So You Just Want to be Happy…

Cast member, Cara Mía Theatre Company.

By Megan Bauer

Now, that you recognize that you spend your days constantly meditating on “What about me?” and that when you do this, you are trapped in the painful loop of hope and fear, what do you do next?

Well, there are few things.

First, begin a consistent daily practice of meditation.  You only need to spend ten minutes in the morning and ten minutes at night meditating to begin to see dramatic benefits in your life.

Through the practice of meditation, we practice staying in our bodies and staying in the present moment.  Our thoughts intrude, and we return to our breath and our body.  The intruding thoughts, when you step back after a month or longer, you begin to realize are the “me plan.” You can probably take any thought that arises and trace it back to one of the Eight Worldly Dharmas and then further down into hope or fear.

Through meditation you begin to see clearly the “me” plan. You begin to see when you are getting caught up in hope and fear, and wanting pleasure, fame, gain and praise or when you are fearing their opposites.

When you begin a regular daily practice of meditation, you step out of being inside the “me plan”and become an observer of it instead. You begin to see it in action.  You see when you get hooked by wanting the fame or the praise and not wanting someone else to have it.  You begin to see when you get hooked because you aren’t getting what you want.  Then, you see what you do when you don’t get what you want.

Meditation is like taking a front row seat to the movie of your mind.   When you take your posture and set aside that time to practice meditation, pop your popcorn and get ready for the show.

And try to remember that who we are when we are in the “me plan,” is not who we are in our truest form.  It is just us amidst the confusion that comes from ignorance. With that in mind, remember to watch without judgment.  You do not take the front row seat to your mind to then beat yourself up for what you see there. When you do that, that it more of the “me plan.”

Eventually, through meditation the mind does slowly become more stable.  When that happens, the Sakyong says in Ruling Your World, “we begin to see how me is just thoughts, feelings and emotions made solid.” He also says that through meditation we begin to see “the currency of life is all a display of the mind.” What that means is that we begin to see clearly how our mind interprets the world and how that interpretation is not necessarily the truth of the world or of the situation.

More tools for getting off the “me plan” to follow in a few days…


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