52 Compassion focused on pervasive suffering

26 Sep 2011

Dharma talk on Compassion
Suffering relates to the “conceit of ‘I am’” – the delusion that there is an “I” that exists outside of conceptual constructs.
There is a current trend among some people that one must develop a strong sense of “I am” before one can meditate. However, it is important to develop confidence rather than ego. Confidence and humility along with a sense of gratitude for one’s teachers can be developed simultaneously. Rather than a strong ego, one must have a realistic sense of who you are.
A dream sign to develop (regarding lucid dreaming) is the psychological impulse of “I am.” Develop this in your so-called “waking state.” Observe your reaction when you are either blamed or praised, not given enough respect. There is a surge of emotion. When you experience anger, resentment, fear, anxiety, self-loathing, pride, do a “reality check” (or as is done in developing lucid dreaming, a “state check”). Ask “Is there really somebody here or is it just a thought?”
Meditation (16:00) on all three types of suffering: blatant suffering, the suffering of change, and the suffering that arises due to our vulnerability because of our vision of who we are.
Carrying practice: Throughout the day, when you have a sense of “I am,” do a reality/state check. Just jumping up and down won’t be enough. Go deep into your awareness that is obscured by mental afflictions but is never contaminated by them.

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