At the level of absolute truth, there is no reason to suffer. But at the relative level, we’re all in considerable pain. The cause of our discontent is our mistaken feeling of separateness. This isn’t based on anything tangible. It’s based on beliefs and concepts. The duality of subject and object, self and other, is an illusion imputed by the mind.
This absolute understanding is arrived at through the practice of letting go. Meanwhile, we can work at the level of everyday pain and treat other people’s suffering as our own.
from the book No Time to Lose: A Timely Guide to the Way of the Bodhisattva
Read a random quote or see all quotes by Pema Chödron.
Further quotes from the book No Time to Lose:
- Our true nature
- Heroic perseverance
- Our capacity for love and tenderness
- Three attitudes
- The cause of our enlightenment
- Connect with Groundlessness
- Three bite practice
- Benefits of pain
- Our pain is self-inflicted
- Any Encounter Offers Us a Choice