Growing Lotus from the Mud of Suffering | Dharma Talk by Br Pháp Lai, 2017.07.14We all want “lotuses” in our lives. It may be happiness, love, harmony, peace …… We do not want the “mud” – anger, grief, jealousy…… We do not want to believe that mud and lotus inter-are. One cannot be without the other. We do not see the goodness of suffering. It is not that we need more suffering. But how to make good use of the suffering.
A seed of lotus feels at home in the squishy mud. It simply needs to be open and growth naturally occurs. Likewise, the wisdom to transform suffering is already in us, waiting for the right conditions.
A lotus seed needs conditions other than mud. Our growth and healing need conditions such as a peaceful environment, which may be our family, school, a spiritual community etc. It also helps to have the right teachings, for example, the practices of mindfulness.
Even when the conditions are there, we may still be reluctant to turn towards the suffering and delve into the mud. It is up to us to try it. I offer you the R.A.I.N. acronym to help you try:
R = recognise, merely recognise whatever is arising. No need to overanalyse, to drown in the stories.
A = accept and embrace
I = investigate, be curious, look deeply
N = non-identification. It is not personal, but merely a coming together of causes and conditions.
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