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transforming suffering

Transforming Suffering

What can we do to transform our deep-rooted seeds of suffering?
There are three ways to work with them:

1. The first is to focus on sowing and watering our seeds of happiness. We do not work with the seeds of suffering, but instead we allow seeds of happiness to transform them. This is indirect transformation.

2. The second way is to practice mindfulness continuously, so that when seeds of suffering arise, we are able to recognise them. Every time they manifest, we bathe them in the light of mindfulness. Our seeds are a field of energy, and mindfulness is also a field of energy. When the seeds are in contact with mindfulness, they will weaken; mindfulness transforms them.

3. The third way to deal with the afflictions that have been with is since childhood is to deliberately invite them up into our mind consciousness. We invite sadness, despair, regrets, longings that in the past have been difficult for us to touch, and we sit down and talk with them like old friends.

But before we invite them up, we must be sure that the lamp of our mindfulness is lit and that it’s light is steady and strong.

Source: Reconciliation – healing the inner child (Thich Nhat Hanh, 2010)