Fear is a natural and universal part of our incarnation, and, when it goes on overdrive, we get imprisoned in the suffering of separation. These two talks explore how the RAIN meditation can help us face fear, and discover the boundless loving awareness that includes but is not contracted by currents of fear.
This meditation establishes a kind attention by bringing the imagery and felt sense of a smile into the body scan and then, with the breath as a home base, opens the attention to changing experience. We end with a brief loving kindness reflection.
This talk provides an overview of the Four Noble Truths, with primary focus on the Noble Truth of Dukkha and the Noble Truth of the Cause of Dukkha. Mindfulness of death is reviewed as a support for practice.
As we further open our hearts to include even difficult people, it is very helpful to learn how to practice forgiveness. Often when deeply hurt our hearts hold resentments and yearn for accountability before it would be willing to risk opening again. And yet when others feel out resentment, judgment and the need for accountability they too shut down defensively.
Starting with a good friend whom you have a history of love and trust, or even your companion animals, you can build a path of forgiveness. Some times we will never get full accountability, yet we can move beyond the pain of resentment to heal ourselves here and now.