Joy and Suffering in Meditation


Meditation is all about integrating yourself into reality in a completely fundamental way. As repeated practice continually refines your sense of awareness, your joy becomes clearer – your suffering becomes clearer.

Through this heightened clarity, both our suffering and joy is heightened. They are not lost, transcended, escaped, or destroyed; rather, whole new dimensions of reality are added to them. Two-dimensional joy becomes quantum joy, unfolding and overlapping into increasingly vast panels of existence. Selfish suffering transforms into selfless suffering – an awareness of the incredible fragility of everything we touch and co-exist with.

This sensitivity changes how we respond to reality. Deepening the realms of our joy, we become more intimate, caring, and friendly – every moment, no matter how chaotic, confusing or challenging, becomes an opportunity to love, to learn, to understand, and, most crucially, an opportunity to be truly naked in the presence of all beings and experience, without contrivance or adornment.

Deepening our suffering, we no longer grasp at it as something endemic to us, but recognize it as something intensely personal to every living being. Whatever sadness or sorrows I feel, you will also one day feel, and vice versa – how could such a knowing not breed empathy, compassion, and Bodhicitta? Being aware of this engenders an authentic tenderness in us – a wish that this weren’t so – a wish to cradle all beings from their unceasing afflictions, and to try make life as smooth and as real as it can be.

Your joy and suffering are not obstacles to the path – they are the path. They are the intertwined and indivisible staircases that we use to ascend to the heaven of non-duality – the twin-breasts that nourish us with the milk of oceanic compassion.

Keep adding new dimensions to everything in your life through daily determined meditation. Eventually, once all walls have been broken down, and all untruth stripped away, Dharmadatu can be attained.



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