Guarding knowledge is not a good way to understand. Understanding means to throw away your knowledge. You have to be able to transcend your knowledge the way people climb a ladder. If you are on the fifth step of a ladder and think that you are very high, there is no hope for you to climb to the sixth.
The Buddha said, 'Nothing can survive without food.' This is a very simple and very deep truth. Love and hate are both living phenomena. If we do not nourish our love, it will die and may turn into hate. If we want love to last, we have to nurture it and give it food every day. Hate is the same; if we don't feed it, it cannot survive.
Breathe in deeply to bring your mind home to your body. Then look at, or think of, the person triggering this emotion: With mindfulness, you can see that she is unhappy, that she is suffering. You can see her wrong perceptions. You can see that she is not beautiful when she says things that are unkind.
We are determined not to take as the aim of our life fame, profit, wealth, or sensual pleasure, nor to accumulate wealth while millions are hungry and dying. We are committed to living simply and sharing our time, energy, and material resources with those who are in need.
When we speak, we want to say something sweet, but we don't say something sweet because something is ordering us from deep down to say something unkind. We want to open our hearts to people, but we can't do it, because we are being ordered around by the sufferings we have concealed deep in our consciousness.
It's like a mother, when the baby is crying, she picks up the baby and she holds the baby tenderly in her arms. Your pain, your anxiety is your baby. You have to take care of it. You have to go back to yourself, to recognize the suffering in you, embrace the suffering, and you get a relief.
There is a story in Zen circles about a man and a horse. The horse is galloping quickly, and it appears that the man on the horse is going somewhere important. Another man standing alongside the road, shouts, «Where are you going?» and the first man replies, «I don't know! Ask the horse!» This is also our story. We are riding a horse, and we don't know where we are going and we can't stop. The horse is our habit energy pulling us along, and we are powerless.
The essence of love and compassion is understanding, the ability to recognize the physical, material, and psychological suffering of others, to put ourselves "inside the skin" of the other. We "go inside" their body, feelings, and mental formations, and witness for ourselves their suffering. Shallow observation as an outsider is not enough to see their suffering. We must become one with the subject of our observation. When we are in contact with another's suffering, a feeling of compassion is born in us. Compassion means, literally, "to suffer with."
Love doesn't have any color. Other people may discriminate against us, but what is more important is whether we discriminate against them. If we don't do that, we are a happier person, and as a happier person, we are in a position to help. And anger, this is not a help.
I am inviting you to go deeper, to learn and to practice so that you become someone who has a great capacity for being solid, calm, and without fear, because our society needs people like you who have these qualities, and your children, our children, need people like you, in order to go on, in order to become solid, and calm, and without fear.
Breathing in, I am aware that I am breathing in. Breathing out, I am aware that I am breathing out. Breathing in, I am grateful for this moment. Breathing out, I smile. Breathing in, I am aware of the preciousness of this day. Breathing out, I vow to live deeply in this day.