a new post by tara branch appeared on the wildmind blog on practice yesterday. the post dealt with our unkind, harsh treatment of ourselves, and it struck a chord with me. as i've worked to let go of negative emotions, i've found myself more mindful of what's going on in my head. so often these days, i'll realize that i'm experiencing anger or frustration or that i'm silently complaining that life is not as i want it to be. when these thoughts and emotions arise, i am surprised to find another voice speaking to me like a kind friend who says, "i understand how you feel. it's ok to feel that way, but those feelings are arising because life isn't going as you expect it to. this situation isn't permanent; you can deal with it and move on."
what a joy it is to accept those negative feelings that come to us all, to be able to forgive ourselves for feeling them, and to recognize that those feelings aren't "me" or "you." they're just temporary stories we're telling ourselves about how life "should" be. but life happens, and it is possible to deal with its vagaries without allowing our minds to become embroiled in negative feelings about our inability to control the things that life throws at us. how nice it is to have that kind friend that is really our detached, reasonable mind reminding us that we're ok and that we don't have to suffer twice when things don't go our way.
my prayer for each of us is that we will treat ourselves kindly, understanding that the arising of negative feelings are a part of our nature. we can accept them and then let them go, seeing them for what they are: stories that we tell ourselves about impermanent situations that are part of the fabric of life. shalom.