there is a Tibetan Buddhist practice called “lojong” (mind-training) that utilizes little slogans for training in loving-kindness and compassion, in opening the heart.
i have found the one featured in this art, “Drive all blames into one”, to be particularly powerful to work with. the practice isn’t dismissing responsibility or recognition of fault. what is addressing is our tendency to hold on to the blame, to not let go. it can be difficult when we are wounded and hurting, to know what to do with that energy. the energy is uncomfortable and unsettling, so we tend to transmit it by blaming. sometimes the blame is towards the actual individual(s) who’s actions were the catalyst, but often the blame falls on individuals, or actions, or situations that have nothing to do with our wounds. it’s just an attempt to get rid of the uncomfortable energy. however, blaming repeatedly doesn’t actually help to heal, and the process can cause new wounds in others, thereby continuing the cycle – the pattern of suffering. as the saying goes, “hurt people hurt people.”
Pema Chödrön says in her commentary on this slogan, “Everyone is looking for someone to blame and therefore aggression and neurosis keep expanding. Instead, pause and look at what’s happening with you. When you hold on so tightly to your view or what they did, you get hooked. Your own self righteousness causes you to get all worked up and to suffer. So work on cooling that reactivity rather than escalating it. This approach reduce suffering – yours and everyone else’s.”
what we come to find in our practice is that there is really only one blame and that blame is suffering itself, in all of its myriad manifestations, and our inability to let go which keeps the cycle hot and ongoing. rather than clinging to the storyline, we can see our story as a reflection of the story of suffering in everyone, in the world itself. we can take that opportunity when we are suffering, to wish that no one suffers in the same way, and then we can put that motivation into action within our lives to benefit and reduce the suffering in the world. ~j
#lojong #lovingkindness #compassion #meditation #TibetanBuddhism #enso #Zen #JMWart