Life, suffering, and the cessation of suffering

Life, suffering, and the cessation of suffering

HH Dilgo Khyentse

We are flawed, led by desire,  quick change, running headlong in pursuit of what we think brings us happiness while forgetting that our true source of happiness is already present inside each of us.

Yours truly is a special case for this and therefore all too often finds himself stuck.  Do you find yourself stuck in habitual behavior patterns that bring you to eventual servitude, misery, and pain? A very wise Yoga/meditation instructor had a routine statement to begin our Shivasana practice, “if you want to know who you’re placing your loyalty with check your credit card statements.”

Is there a cure?  Thankfully so many leaders, past and present, already walked (tread) this path for us. This is an argument for seeking a qualified teacher, wisdom leader when you start any spiritual journey.  A fool’s journey may lead you to eventual wisdom, but the road is rough and strewn with thorns.

How to begin when you find yourself stuck:

First, recognize, forgive and accept your circumstances. Eventually, through meditation and experience, you will recognize the triggers that tempt you away from a state of equilibrium and respond appropriately rather than react unconsciously.

Remember your circumstances however miserable are better than some and worse than others.   The Buddha taught us in the (essential teachings) 4 Noble truths that life is suffering, there are causes of suffering (dukhas or dissatisfaction with what is), there is a cessation of suffering and it begins with satisfaction (appreciation) with what is.  Practice gratitude for the small blessings that come each and every day.  Be mindful of others discomfort and help in any way possible to alleviate their suffering.  Open the door for others and help when someone is experiencing difficulty walking, opening a door, trouble with their vehicle.  Comfort when someone is expressing worry, fear, anxiety over real or imagined losses.  It is remarkable how when we help another our individual suffering seems less important or is alleviated.

Suffering is very real for those in the midst of suffering.  Physical and the resulting emotional pain is very difficult to experience.  Mere words will not help yet the aforementioned teachings and practices may lead to a cessation of the causes of suffering and thus minimize the results.