As is. Behind the fear,
Sadness, then compassion
And behind that the vast sky.
“Real fearlessness is the product of tenderness. It comes from letting the world tickle your heart, your raw and beautiful heart. You are willing to open up, without resistance or shyness, and face the world. You are willing to share your heart with others.”
Like spring unfolding across the palette of April and May, our world slowly greens and blooms. What was tan, stark, and frigid, slowly brightens, softens and warms. At a point we notice: It's different now than it was before.
At other times, insight and healing emerge like a bolt of lightning!
Sometimes bursting forth with a torrential downpour of tears, sometimes not, a Grand Gestalt crystallizes in a heartbeat. In a flash, in an instant, we really get It! Or perhaps -- more accurately-- It gets us. It's different now than it was before.
The Genuine Heart of Sadness
Awhile ago, I had the good fortunate to stop by Himalayan Views, a nearby spiritual gift shop/bookstore, to hear a woman describe one of those moments. She was sitting in the back reading area of the store, and as is often the case, I found myself chatting with her about the book she was reading, and comparing notes on our lives and spiritual practice.
Her eyes were clear, her voice gentle yet strong as she shared her story. In her mid-thirties at the time of her awakening, suffering from what had been diagnosed as "clinical depression" since adolescence, she had come across a book of Pema Chodron's teachings. When she read of what Pema's teacher, Chogyam Trungpa had called "the genuine heart of sadness, her life was transformed.
As the woman read that passage that day, the awakening had come in a flash. Reality asserted itself. At that very moment, She knew.