The main point of these methods is to dissolve the dualistic struggle. Our habitual tendency to struggle against what’s happening to us or in us. These methods instruct us to move toward difficulties rather than back away. We don’t get this kind of encouragement very often.
There are three traditional methods for relating directly with difficult circumstances as a path of awakening and joy
- the first method we’ll call NO MORE STRUGGLE.
- the second, USING POISON AS MEDICINE.
- the third, SEEING WHATEVER ARISES AS ENLIGHTENED WISDOM.
These are three techniques for working with chaos, difficulties , and unwanted events in our daily lives.
The first method, NO MORE STRUGGLE.
When we sit down to meditate, whatever arises in our minds we look directly, call it “thinking”, and go back to the simplicity and immediacy of the breath.
MEDITATION PRACTICE IS HOW WE STOP FIGHTING WITH OURSELVES, HOW WE STOP STRUGGLING WITH CIRCUMSTANCES, EMOTIONS, OR MOODS.
Whatever arises, we can look at it with a nonjudgemental attitude.
Whatever or whoever arises, train again and again in looking at it and seeing it for what 0it is without calling it names, without hurling rocks, without averting your eyes. Let all these stories go. THE INNERMOST ESSENCE OF MIND IS WITHOUT BIAS. Things arise and things dissolve forever and ever. That’s just the way it is. We can stop struggling with what occurs and see its true face without calling it the enemy. Stop struggle and relax .
The second method. POISON AS MEDICINE
The three poisons are passion(craving or addiction), aggression and ignorance(denial, shut down and close out). When suffering arises , let the story line go and BREATHE IT IN ---- not jus the anger , resentment , or loneliness that we might be feeling, but the identical pain of others who in this very moment are also feeling rage , bitterness , or isolation.
WE BREATHE IN IT FOR EVERYBODY. This poison is not just our personal misfortune , our fault , our blemish, our shame--- its part of our the human condition.
Instead of pushing it away or running from it, we breathe in and connect with it fully. We do this with the wish that all of us could be free of suffering. Then we breathe out, sending out a sense of big space, a sense of ventilation and freshness.
EVERYTHING THAT OCCURS IS NOT ONLY USABLE AND WORKABLE BUT IS ACTUALLY THE PATH ITSELF. WE CAN USE EVERYTHING THAT HAPPENS TO US AS THE MEANS OF WAKING UP.
Application : as one lojong slogan says” when the world is filled with evil , all mishaps, all difficulties, should be transformed into the path of enlightenment.” Thts the notion engendered here.
- The third method SEEING WHATEVER ARISES AS ENLIGHTENED WISDOM.
We can regard ourselves as already awake; we can regard our world as already sacred. The third method for working with chaos is to regard whatever arises as the manifestation of awakened energy.
Regarding what arises as awakened energy reverses our fundamental habitual pattern of trying to avoid conflict, trying to make ourselves better than we are , trying to smooth things out and pretty them up, trying to prove that pain is a mistake and would not exist in our lives if only we did all the right things. this view turns that particular pattern completely around, encouraging us to become interested in looking at the charnel ground of our lives as the working basis for attaining enlightenment.
Chaos is part of our home ground. Instead of looking for something higher or purer, work with it just as it is. The chaos in here and the chaos out there--- this is basic energy, the play of wisdom. Whether we regard our situation as heaven or as hell depends on our perception.