Thick clouds do not allow us to see the vast sky. So it is with some mental states such as anxiety, fear, anger, jealousy, envy, desire, and depression: they act like clouds in the mind. Not only they limit — and even at times totally obstruct our views — but they also bring about unwholesome words and actions, which engender negative consequences in our lives and the lives of others.
The three roots of all defilements, and the causes of the majority of human suffering, are attachment, aversion, and ignorance. Attachment is experienced as desire, greed, covetousness, and craving, which bring about the vain attempts to hold on, cling, and grasp a reality that is always changing. Aversion brings with it anger, hatred, ill-will, and even cruelty. Finally ignorance, or delusion, produce wrong perceptions that destabilize the peace of mind and result in hurtful actions.
Mindfulness practice allows us to notice the disturbances created by our attachments, aversions, and ignorance. Diligent observation allows us to realize how much of our life energy is spent trying to reel in what we want and push away what we don’t want, while ignoring that it’s impossible to to get all we want to the total exclusion of what we don’t want. It becomes clear to us how much this pulling and pushing throw us out of balance. But once we acknowledge the presence of greed in our lives, its power over us subsides, and then renunciation, relinquishing, and generosity are revealed. And once we acknowledge our aversions, resistance subsides and a calm acceptance, not resignation, settles in.
So, the suggestion for increasing the quality of life is to notice the pulling and pushing forces at work, while investigating and getting clear about our attachments, aversions, and ignorance.
Piero Falci is an author and educator who believes that the inner work that leads to personal awakening and transformation is indispensable to create a wholesome world. He is an explorer of the mysteries of life who loves to observe, reflect and write, and who not only aspires to live a life that matters, but also hopes to inspire others to do the same. He is a promoter of peace who believes in advancing the idea that Heaven is here if we want it to be. He teaches Mindfulness Meditation and Mindful Living, and the acclaimed Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program as taught at the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Healthcare, and Society of the University of Massachusetts Medical School. He leads mindfulness silent retreats and organizes Silent Peace Walks. He lives in Florida, USA. Join his Mindfulness Meditation and Mindfulness Living sessions at Yoga Source in Coral Springs (Sundays at 9:00 AM) and at Shiwa Yoga in Deerfield Beach (Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6:30 AM)
Take a look at these books at the Peaceful Ways online store
– “Peaceful Ways – The Power of Making Your Wishes Come True”
– “Pay Attention! Be Alert! Discovering Your Route to Happiness”
– “Silent Peace Walk”