NEW MOON – Release

Relinquish anger. 
Let go of conceit. 
Release yourself from all that binds you. 
The pure-hearted who cling neither to body nor mind 
do not fall prey to suffering. 

Dhammapada v. 221

When we feel beset with difficulties, we readily look outside of ourselves for the causes. Certainly, the causes of the painful feelings that we experience could lie on the outside. But our Dhamma teachers point to another set of causes: those which turn natural painful feelings into suffering. Those causes lie on the inside. All beings, even the Buddha in his last life, experience pleasant and painful feelings. If awakened beings eat bad food, they are liable to develop a stomach ache. If they are surrounded by unruly, badly behaved disciples, they are likely to find that disagreeable. However, they don’t add that extra ingredient which turns painful feelings into suffering. Because of their clarity of mind, anger and conceit do not arise. Having freed their hearts from all habits of clinging to the body/mind, they no longer fall prey to suffering.

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