(Wisdom Quarterly) Ven. Pema Chodron -- American Tibetan Buddhist nun, prolific Shambhala author, and star student of controversial "cult" leader Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche -- talks about challenging ourselves rather than always trying to smooth things out.
Meditation blossoms in a serene environment utterly free of internal irritation. Life, unlike meditation, is full of rough going. The way to freedom is not always through making the external environment exactly as we would like it. Wanting it a certain way will aggravate us whenever circumstances do not seem to cooperate.
Seeing things in this way, we can experience rapid growth towards the good. Mind and body come together again in harmony. After all, as IQ meditation founder George Quant says, "The brain is just a switching station for consciousness."
"Why I became a Buddhist"
(SoundsTrueVideos) Pema Chödrön reveals the time-tested Buddhist antidote to suffering and shows how to apply it in one's own life. The simple and elegant meditation practice known as tonglen ["giving and receiving"], she teaches, is the perfect medicine for "ordinary people like ourselves." Through tonglen, we can use life's difficulties as a way to befriend ourselves, accept the past we have rejected, and widen our circle of compassion (Good Medicine).