To begin with, in meditation we can notice how emotions and moods are connected with having lost or gained something, having been praised or blamed, and so forth. We can notice how what begins as a simple thought, a simple quality of energy, quickly blossoms into full-blown pleasure and pain. We have to have a certain amount of fearlessness, of course, because we like it all to come out on the pleasure/praise/fame/gain side. We like to ensure that everything will come out in our favor. But when we really look, we’re going to see that we have no control over what occurs at all. We have all kinds of mood swings and emotional reactions. They just come and go endlessly.
Sometimes we’re going to find ourselves completely caught up in a drama. We’re going to be just as angry as if someone had just walked into the room and slapped us in the face. Then it might occur to us: ‘Wait a minute -what’s going on here?’ We look into it and are able to see that, out of nowhere, we feel that we have lost something or been insulted. Where this thought came from we don’t know, but here we are, hooked again…Right then, we can feel that energy, and give ourselves a break. Beyond all that fuss and bother is a big sky. Right there in the middle of the tempest, we can drop it and relax.
from the book When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times
Read a random quote or see all quotes by Pema Chödron.
Further quotes from the book When Things Fall Apart:
- Finding out what is true
- Flooding the world with your kindness
- Become Familiar with Fear
- Exposing ourselves to annihilation
- Only in our own experience
- Until we got it
- Don’t Set Out to Save the World
- Fully alive
- No fresh air
- Becoming unstuck
- Abandoning hope
- Drive all blames into oneself
- What is in front of us right in the moment
- It’s just like that
- How are you
- Just being here again and again and again
- Cultivating Peace
- Undoing of old ways of seeing
- Moving closer to the truth