The Internal Minefield

If you regularly read this blog you know that I post weekly each Monday on our mutual quest for happiness and then occasionally bring in other small posts particularly from the Dalai Lama or Deng Ming-Dao.  As it happened today I experienced a small piece of synchronicity as I encountered a new statement from his holiness that matched up very well with today’s daily meditation by Deng Ming-Dao, so I thought I would provide them both together. 

Both are expression of acceptance of what is inside each of us, the good and the bad.  The Dalai Lama asks us to eliminate the negative. Deng Ming-Dao guides us just a bit further by explaining that we must express the negative to remove it.  I will humbly add my own advice to this esteemed company and talk a little bit about how to do that. 

First the Dalai Lama:

True happiness comes from having a sense of inner peace and contentment, which in turn must be achieved by cultivating altruism, love and compassion, and by eliminating anger, selfishness and greed. ~Dalai Lama

 

Now Deng Ming-Dao from Daily Meditations: The 365 Day Tao

Express yourself
That is meaning

Ask yourself each day, “What remains unexpressed within me?”

Whatever it is, bring it out.  But be judicious.  The rantings of mad people do not yield greater freedom.  Those who are with Tao use expression to find greater understanding of themselves and so find liberation from ignorance and circumstance.

All that is good and unique in you should be brought out.  If you do not do this, you will be stunted.  Never hold back, thinking that you will wait for a better time.  The good in you is like the water in a well:  The more you draw from it, the more fresh water will seep in.  If you don’t draw from it, the water will only become stagnant.

What is dark, perhaps even evil, inside you must be expressed in a proper way too.  Lust, hatred, cruelty, and resentment – these must all be carefully taken out of yourself, like finding a bomb and taking it to be detonated harmlessly.  Your heart may be quite a mine field, but you must persevere in clearing if you are to plant crops and frolic without concern.

Ask yourself each day, “What remains unexpressed within me?”  Unless you can express it, you will not clarify your inner nature.

And finally me:

I love the daily meditation above, but it raises an immediate question, how do I do this?  How do I take those negative and frightening things out of myself like the bombs that they are and diffuse them?  For me there have always been two mechanisms, fantasy and writing.  First I think it’s ok to allow the negative within you to be expressed in your mind, fantasizing about screaming at your boss or the rude waiter is ok, this is particularly good for those things that may be considered evil within you.  As long as it doesn’t transition from fantasizing to planning.

A more effective way for me is writing, many writers explain that when you write you remove the energy behind what you write as you lay it down on paper.  It is similar for me, when I put my thoughts, this energy down on paper it gives me the chance to rethink it, analyze my emotions and come to a better understanding.  This is what works for me but there are many ways to deal with the negative; some remove this energy by being physical, through exercise or recreation; others through meditation, tai chi or yoga; and finally many others through art.  The method is irrelevant, what is important is to find a method by which you can express yourself, that also allows you while in the process, to find the mental space to consider your thoughts and come to a happier place.   Of utmost importance is that you come to know what is within you, cultivate that which is good, and work to remove that which is not.  Have a great day.

About Michael Kane

Michael Kane is a writer, photographer, educator, speaker, adventurer and a general sampler of life. His books on hiking and poetry are available in soft cover and Kindle on Amazon.
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