Posted by: Upāsaka | 10/26/2017

Tonglen and a Planet-sized Nebula of Suffering

This morning, after my half hour of zazen I turned to the brahmaviharas. After chuckling through a handful of people I ended up easing into tonglen. At first I was breathing in the suffering of individuals and sending them ease and light, then I began to turn to areas like my apartment. Before I knew it I was breathing in the sufferings of all beings obviously the planet.

Initially, there was a ton of fear and trepidation: how could one small being like myself take over the suffering of billions of beings? The insects dying by the millions as a result of mass produced poisons, the millions of children dying from cholera and famine, the fish and marine life suffocating in the ever-growing hypoxic zones of the oceans. I felt as though I was being crushed under it all. But, somewhere a voice told me to keep going. The conviction to just stick with it arose. And I did.

What happened next wasn’t extraordinary but the pain began to ease and, as I exhaled light and metta, I gained a confidence that, regardless of how small I was, I could still help. The amazing thing was simply that the sense of futility and hopelessness had gone. Sabbe satta sabba dukkha pamuccantu!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Categories

Daily Dhamma Study Group

Teachings of Lord Buddha in the Pali Canon

Buddha's Brain

"Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without." ~ Buddha

Upāsakatta

———————————————————

rationaldhamma

about buddhist teachings

Cattāri Brahmavihārā

Practicing the Dhamma-vinaya in the context of a full-blown lay life.