A great spiritual teacher can wait for her students to mature. She feels no need to boast of or prove her enlightenment. She neither imposes her teachings nor asks students to follow her exclusively. She lets her students be so they can grow on their own. When a deep, honest conversation makes us feel connected to someone, we become very happy. The same deep connection with ourselves is possible by wholly accepting who we are and realizing the enlightened nature of ourselves. This, too, is a source of incomparable happiness and freedom.
What to do when you are feeling low? Quietly observe the feeling without trying to change it. It will change on its own. As if gazing at a tree in the backyard, as if sitting by a river and watching the water flow by, quietly observe your feelings as if they are external to you. If you observe your feelings in this way for just three minutes, you will notice their energy and texture slowly changing. Feelings are often born from a matrix of conditions beyond your control. Just like you can’t control the weather, or your boss’s mood, you can’t control the feelings in your body. They are just passing through, like clouds in the sky. They, too, dissipate on their own.
But if you take them too seriously and start internalizing them as part of your identity, then you will resuscitate them every time you think about the past. Remember that you are neither your feelings nor the story your mind tells about you to make sense of them. You are the vast silence that knows of their emergence and their disappearance.
Excerpt From: Haemin Sunim. “The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down: How to Be Calm and Mindful in a Fast-Paced World”.