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Lions Roar : July 2010
z o C/) C/) ::s o f-< >L1 2 :Q >-< o f-< o :r:: p..., suffering of war, you can recognize the value of peace. Otherwise, you don't ap- preciate peace, and you want to make war. So your experience of the suffering of war serves as the background for your happi- ness about peace. Therefore, to have some suffering is very important. You learn from suffering, and against that background, you can recognize happiness. There is a deep tendency in us to seek pleasure and avoid suffering. It is rooted in the store consciousness, called manas in Sanskrit. Manas is always seeking pleasure and trying to avoid pain and suffering. Manas isn't aware of the danger of plea- sure-seeking because there is ignorance in manas. It is like a fish who is about to bite the bait and does not know that inside of the bait there is a hook. Manas isn't aware of the danger of pleasure and does not know that suffering has its own goodness. It is good to experience some suffering, because when you suffer you develop compassion and understanding. Because it ignores the dangers of plea- sure and the goodness of suffering, we have to transfer the insight we develop in our meditation practice to the store con- sciousness. That is because the thinking of mind consciousness alone is not enough to transform ourselves at the base. What mind consciousness can do is meditate, develop insight, and then download the insight to the store consciousness, and the first insight to be emphasized is that pleasure-seeking is dangerous and avoiding suffering is not wise, because suffering has its own good- ness. When you have mindfulness, when you have enough courage to go back to yourself and embrace the suffering in you, you learn a lot. By doing so, you transform your suf- fering. If you're always trying to run away from your suffering, you have no chance to do that. That is why the Buddha told us to recognize the first noble truth, the truth of suffering, and to look deeply in order to discover the second noble truth, the cause of suffering. That is the only way the fourth noble truth, the path to transform suffering into happiness, can reveal itself. So we have to emphasize the role of suffering. If we are too afraid of suffering, we have no chance. I think all of us feel true love toward some- body in our lives, someone whose suffering we would gladly take on ourselves and to whom we would gladly give all our happi- ness. To expand that kind of love to more people, ultimately to all people, would be the best thing we could ever do. It would transform our world. How do we take the love that each of us has within us and ex- pand it to a wider circle? vive unless there is someone taking care of you. When you hear the steps of your mother coming, you recognize them as the person who will take care of you, and you are happy. You spend all of your time waiting for that sound, because when that person comes, there will be milk, there will be warmth, there will be everything. That is when the first fear and the first desire are born, and when you grow up, Insight and love, they are the same. Insight brings love, and love is not possible without insight. At the moment you were born you began to experience fear, original fear, because you risked death in that very crucial moment. You just got out from a very comfortable place, the uterus of your mother, and they have cut the umbilical cord. Now you have to breathe by yourself, and there is liquid in your lungs. You have to evacuate that liquid in order to take your first in-breath, and if you cannot do that, you will die. So the first experience of fear takes place at that moment, and the original desire, the desire to survive, is also born in that moment. As a baby, you learn that you are helpless. You know you cannot sur- your desire to have a partner is only the continuation of that. You feel that you need someone to take care of you be- cause you are helpless, you are vulner- able, you cannot do it by yourself. You need another. So if you are eager to look for a partner, that means your first, origi- nal desire is still present, that you do not feel safe when someone is not there. So your partner, your lover, may be a con- tinuation of mommy or daddy. You are peaceful because you feel, "I'm okay now, mommy is there, daddy is there:' It is not the true presence of the other person that brings you this relaxation. It is your idea SHAMBHALA SUN JULY 2010 47