Lojong Slogan 27 ~ Work with the Greatest Defilements First
This is part 27 of my series on Lojong- a Buddhist Mind Training exercise
What are defilements you ask? According to this slogan they are those thoughts, habits and emotions that keep us from tapping in to our inner knowing, our deep compassion, the core of who we truly are. It's about tackling head on the things that we ordinarily put off until a tomorrow that never seems to come. It's about digging deep to discover what is really holding you back from finding the loving-kindness and compassion that exist within you. What is it that holds you back from being the absolute best version of yourself?
For many, I suspect that fear is involved. Fear of not fitting in with others when the gossip starts; fear of losing some part of ourselves that we think we need for protection in this crazy world; fear of others seeing you as odd or different. I know for me this is a challenge that I seek to overcome. How do I fit into the world, but still hold myself apart from it? How do I work in the world, but remain a detached observer? How do I respond to aggression and disrespect with compassion and loving-kindness? That's the hardest one for me. I know in my heart that how I respond to every situation is the key to my journey. I know in my heart that when I am able to stay true to myself- to my belief system of a world that can be more compassionate and kind- that I am acting in a way that is in harmony with my true nature. I know this, and yet even after all the work I've done for myself, the fear creeps up. But it doesn't feel like fear, it feels like frustration, anger, and sadness. I have to trust in my ability to love more than others ability to hate. So today, I will meditate on fear. Dig deep and expose the truth of it; that at the end of the day letting go of fear is letting more love and light into my heart.