Friday, February 8, 2013

Unconditional Presence, Grounded in Humanness, Willingness to Feel, Wallowing

     "JW: The word 'com-passion' literally means 'feeling with.' You can’t have compassion unless you’re first willing to feel what you feel. This opens up a certain rawness and tenderness— what Trungpa Rinpoche spoke of as the 'soft spot,' which is the seed of bodhicitta.

     TF: It’s vulnerable.

     JW: Yes. That’s the sign that you’re getting close to bodhicitta. That rawness is also quite humbling. Even if we’ve been doing spiritual practice for decades, we still find these big, raw, messy feelings coming up --- maybe a deep reservoir of sorrow or helplessness. But if we can acknowledge these feelings, and open ourselves nakedly to them, we’re moving toward greater openness, in a way that is grounded in our humanness. We ripen into a genuine person through learning to make room for the full range of experiences we go through.

      TF: How do you know when you’re indulging or wallowing in feelings?

     JW: That question always comes up. Wallowing in feelings is being stuck in fixation fed by going over and over stories in your mind. Unconditional presence, on the other hand, is about opening nakedly to a feeling instead of becoming caught up in stories about the feeling."

        HUMAN NATURE, BUDDHA NATURE. On Spiritual Bypassing, Relationship, and the Dharma: An interview with John Welwood by Tina Fossella

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