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Thread: Some thoughts on fear and compassion

  1. #1
    Senior Member Amelia's Avatar
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    Some thoughts on fear and compassion

    http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showt...056#post132056

    I was going to post in the above thread, but I didn't want to go off-topic.

    I used to be very anxious if anyone I cared for was in pain, emotional and/ or physical. I would appear withdrawn and sometimes say inappropriate things because of the stress. Sometimes, I still do. I caught myself going into old bad habits last night as I was comforting a friend who has lost a pet cat.

    However, I have noticed a change in my self-talk when these situations occur. Actually, the change is more like a lack of self-talk. I am learning to be still and compassionate with people in these types of situations now, which is comforting. I have learned that I used to fear bad things happening not only because of the obvious, but also because I was afraid of how I would react. Now that I have started to react less from within myself, I have a less fear.

    I'm pretty sure this is practice at work, so I bow to you all.

    Gassho and metta
    迎 Geika

  2. #2
    Thank you, Amelia. Your presence is very much appreciated here and everywhere.

    Kind regards. /\
    _/_
    Rich
    MUHYO
    無 (MU, Emptiness) and 氷 (HYO, Ice) ... Emptiness Ice ...

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Rich View Post
    Thank you, Amelia. Your presence is very much appreciated here and everywhere.

    Kind regards. /\
    I agree with Rich here ... I too am thankful for your presence Amelia, thank you for your post. =)

    Gassho
    Shingen
    倫道 真現

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Heishu's Avatar
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    Amelia, I return the bow to you, as has already been said by Rich and Shingen, I too am humbled by your presence and your practice. Each of us learn something everyday from our sangha.

    Gassho,
    Heishu


    “Blessed are the flexible, for they never get bent out of shape." Author Unknown

  5. #5
    Senior Member Joyo's Avatar
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    That is great, Amelia, so glad this practice is helping you, and that you are part of our sangha!!!

    Gassho,
    Joyo

  6. #6
    I am learning to be still and compassionate with people in these types of situations now, which is comforting. I have learned that I used to fear bad things happening not only because of the obvious, but also because I was afraid of how I would react. Now that I have started to react less from within myself, I have a less fear.

    I'm pretty sure this is practice at work, so I bow to you all.
    Hi Amelia,

    wow, that is deep, and reminds me of what Kokuu was saying elsewhere about developing intimacy with ourselves. Sounds like... is it learning to have trust in yourself? That's something I struggle with. Your post makes me happy. Thank you for sharing your insight

    Gassho
    Lisa

  7. #7
    Senior Member Amelia's Avatar
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    Thank you all. I am so grateful to the Sangha.

    Lisa, if I think about it, yes, I am learning to trust myself. I was thinking before about how it is a trust in the Dharma, but really there's no separation. Thanks for reminding me of that.

    Gassho
    迎 Geika

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Amelia View Post
    I am learning to trust myself
    Just these few words are a beautiful and valuable teaching. =)

    Gassho
    Shingen
    倫道 真現

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.

  9. #9
    Gratitude.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

    #SAT TODAY!

  10. #10
    Deep bows Amelia,



    Willow

  11. #11
    Hi Amelia. I can relate to what you are saying. Less fear. I can't think of any fruit of practice more liberating. I remember a childhood and early adult life lived in a pervasive atmosphere of anxiety and fear. It was so pervasive it was normal, almost invisible, as if that was how life is supposed to be. I think maybe that is typical.

    I still get anxious or restless, but it is circumstantial, and it passes. When pushed, there are some karmic buttons that trigger a deep reaction, and I get swept up in thinking and imagined scenarios, but they also pass. I can sit. I can sit on a cushion and just sit there. It is wonderful, and it is Sangha support that is so essential. Good teachers and friends.

    BTW I feel like I've known you for years... in the air of Indra's Buddha net.

    Gassho
    Daizan
    大山

  12. #12
    Senior Member KellyRok's Avatar
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    Hello Amelia and all,

    Thank you for sharing your experience with us Amelia! I relate so much with what you've shared. Personal fears can be such a powerful force if we let them be; and just realizing this fact, is showing compassion towards ourselves. Which of course, allows us to share that compassion with others.

    So many beautiful comments here...I'm grateful that we have this space to share and grow together.

    humble bows back to you Amelia,
    Kelly/Jinmei

  13. #13
    Senior Member Myosha's Avatar
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    Hello,

    ". . .this is practice at work. . ."

    Great!


    Gassho,
    Myosha
    Practice with humility, respect all beings, avoid attachments, give rise to prajña from your own awareness, put an end to delusions - Hui-neng

  14. #14
    Senior Member Joyo's Avatar
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    What Shingen said... beautiful Amelia, very glad you have shared here.

    I too lived with fear and anxiety as a child, it was just an acceptable way to live, as there was so much to fear---the end times, stamp of the beast (666), hell, my dad, etc. etc. When I was around age 9 I had a complete mental breakdown because of it. I slowly crawled myself out, but still, never trusted myself. I was taught not too, because humans are wicked. I am very, very grateful to the dharma, Treeleaf for helping with such fear and anxiety, as now, as a Buddhist, I no longer have them.

    Gassho,
    Joyo
    Last edited by Joyo; 07-19-2014 at 06:39 PM.

  15. #15
    Senior Member Shawn's Avatar
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    Thank you for sharing this Amelia.

    Gassho, Shawn
    I am relatively new to zen. Please keep that in mind and take what I say with a truck load of salt.

  16. #16
    Thank you, Amelia
    Last edited by Kaishin; 07-20-2014 at 05:24 PM.
    Gassho,
    Kaishin

  17. #17
    Senior Member Heisoku's Avatar
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    Thank you Amelia for your open heartedness. Gassho.
    In his book on Training the Mind (in compassion), which I am reading after Norman Fischer's book on Mind Training, Trungpa is suggesting that the closer we get to our buddhanature the more we have to face the turmoil of irritability, anger and fear. He even uses an analogy that Jundo has used, in that we need to go through the blender in order to process ourselves. I guess we really just sit through the blending and let the fears we have arise, see them for what they are, before being able to let them go.
    You have let go and have allowed yourself to trust your true heart. Thank you for your example. Gassho.
    Heisoku
    平 息

  18. #18
    Senior Member TimF's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amelia View Post
    http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showt...056#post132056

    I was going to post in the above thread, but I didn't want to go off-topic.

    I used to be very anxious if anyone I cared for was in pain, emotional and/ or physical. I would appear withdrawn and sometimes say inappropriate things because of the stress. Sometimes, I still do. I caught myself going into old bad habits last night as I was comforting a friend who has lost a pet cat.

    However, I have noticed a change in my self-talk when these situations occur. Actually, the change is more like a lack of self-talk. I am learning to be still and compassionate with people in these types of situations now, which is comforting. I have learned that I used to fear bad things happening not only because of the obvious, but also because I was afraid of how I would react. Now that I have started to react less from within myself, I have a less fear.

    I'm pretty sure this is practice at work, so I bow to you all.

    Gassho and metta
    Thank you for posting this, Amelia. During my time spent with my father this last week (referring to the thread link you posted), I felt anger and helplessness...and this led me to be a bit "short" with my family members, including my dad. I felt as if I was back-tracking in my practice of compassion, until I took stock and realized that I was merely expressing human emotion to a stressful environment, which led me to eventually smile, take a deep breath, and realize that I was not a heartless jerk, but rather a human who wears his emotions on his sleeves . And you know what? My family didn't get made at me for my short fuse, but rather patted me on the back, gave me some hugs, and let me know that we all felt the same about the situation.

    Again, thanks for posting this! It helps for me to know that I am never alone when stress, fear, and anger encourages me to say inappropriate things.

    Gassho,
    Tim
    "The moment has priority". ~ Bon Haeng

  19. #19
    Senior Member Amelia's Avatar
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    I will echo Daizan and say also that I feel like I've known many of you for years, and for most of you, I think that is so.

    Thank you all for posting.

    Bows.
    迎 Geika

  20. #20
    Thank you so much for sharing this, Amelia. It is wonderful to read the fruit of your practice. I echo the others in saying that your presence here is greatly appreciated.

    I wonder if reduced fear partly comes from caring more about others than ourselves? I notice within myself that if I go into a situation wondering what I can do for the benefit of others rather than myself (or at least making the encounter good for them rather than me) I am less worried about how it will go.

    With gratitude and deep bows

    Andy

  21. #21
    Member Jamie's Avatar
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    Bows back to you Amelia.
    Kokuu, your suggestion is intriguing to me, I am going to sit with this awhile.
    Gassho
    Jamie

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