Posted by: Upāsaka | 04/08/2019

Taking and Giving

We practice taking from two sources: from sentient beings and from the environment they inhabit. First we take three things from sentient beings: suffering; the causes which produce it, disturbing attitudes and karma, which are the deluded obscurations; and the imprints left by the disturbing attitudes, which are the obscurations to omniscience.

Masters often recommend, “Start taking from yourself,” which is a helpful way to become accustomed to taking. In the morning, we take upon ourselves any suffering we might experience later in the day. We think of voluntarily accepting it and experiencing it now. When we are accustomed to this, we take the suffering we will experience tomorrow, then the suffering of the day after, the next month, next year, and gradually our future lives as well. We are taking upon ourselves selves the suffering which is going to be experienced by people in the same continuum as ourselves.

When we are somewhat trained in this meditation, we start to take the suffering of those who are close to us: our parents, siblings, partner, and friends.

Finally, we imagine taking the suffering of all sentient beings in the six realms. All the time, we should think, “Their suffering and negative karma has ripened on me and they are free from suffering and negativities.”

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