“It was Ralph Waldo Emerson who said, “Don’t be pushed by your problems. Be led by your dreams.” For those who apply the Buddha’s timeless teachings to their lives, achieving the goal laid out by Emerson can become a reality. It is possible to turn the tide, to resist being pushed by problems and circumstances. To live our dreams in the waking reality of the workplace”.
We are constantly creating the life we are experiencing. A certain principle in a Buddhist tradition refers to this as ‘oneness of self and the environment’. It is akin to watching our mirrored image. When we raise our hand in anger, the image reflects that right back at us. When we bow with respect, the image has no choice but to bow back with respect.
If we are constantly creating the life we are experiencing, why then you ask, is so much of it unhappy or dissatisfying or frustrating? Because we have yet to learn the right attitude and the right approach to creating that life that we truly desire.
We may ‘wish’ for happiness, even long for it but not have the know how to create the happy life. There are intervening and underlying beliefs. “Oh, life is a struggle” could be the subconscious guiding belief. Or, “Life is a series of problems”. Or the most dangerous (dis)belief of them all – “It is too good to be true”. Equally damaging is the popular sentiment that “ you don’t get everything in life”. I cannot recall Our emotional life with its own heavy burden of anger, doubt, disappointment weighs us down.
Buddha At Work provides practical ways and means of transforming the inner so that the outside changes and transforms.
There are truly transformational tools which are neither strenuous nor time consuming. Our lives today cannot, simply cannot absorb more time robbers. It would be pointless to say that life will transform if we meditate for two hours a day. Or to repeat a mantra for several hours a day. I know I cannot do it. I guess you may not be able to make the time for it as well. I will never be able to sustain a two hour daily model.
And so I was able to craft and share techniques which are practical with our daily life and its busyness. The key lies in doing these exercises with sincerity and consistency. I have been able to transform my life with these approaches and exercises. And have seen many others do the same.
To learn to let go of the anger we hold is crucial. Anger against others, anger at oneself and anger against life. It stems from the attitude that somehow others are responsible for the right gone wrong, the missed opportunity, the never again moment. All because of someone else. Sometime even because I didn’t know better.
As Gautam says, “Blaming others means that you are not taking responsibility for your own life… It is your approach, your attitude and your behavior along that determines your happiness or unhappiness”.
From owning our own life, the next logical step is learning to let go. Forgiveness or letting go or healing our life. All are the same. To not keep recreating the same negativity by holding on. The word ‘resent’, as in ‘resentment’ refers to its persistence. About reliving the hurt or slight, again and again. When we do this, we create and recreate the negative repeatedly.
This is how you can break the pattern.
The Calming Meditation is a vital step in accepting responsibility for your own life and for forgiving those who have hurt you or harmed you.
Follow these steps:
- Sit easy and straight in a quiet place
- Breathe in and out gently a few times
- Consciously breathe out ONE negative emotion (stress or anger or frustration or lack of confidence or the feeling of being unfulfilled) that you have identified in yourself.
- As you breathe out your negative emotion, visualize it leaving your body and mind in a dark stream. Choose a dark or black colour. Moving out. Moving out of your body, mind, heart and spirit. Leaving your life. Observe this stream leaving you. Repeat a few times till you begin to feel lighter.
- Having done this (Step 4), you can choose to breathe in ONE positive emotion of your choice (calmness or poise or confidence or completion)
- As you breathe in your positive emotion, visualize it entering your body and mind in a colourful stream of light. A radiant stream of light. Calmly receive this radiant light through your breath into your body, into your mind, into your heart and spirit. Into your life.
Consistent practice for just 5 minutes a day is transformational. But you have to make those 5 minutes. There is a positive result by doing this in the morning and setting the intent for the day. Else you can do this at night (just before sleep) and powerfully influence your subconscious. Entirely your choice.
For it is as Gautam says, “You alone can help yourself, because you are the one who creates the life you lead.” (Excerpted with permission of Hachette India from Buddha at Work: Finding Balance, Purpose and Happiness at Your Workplace by Geetanjali Pandit. Click to read Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4 of this series.)