Psychology tells us that we supposed to learn from what others do to us, and if it's bad, to see "our part" and do forgiveness practices. However, it doesn't seem to come with the equally valid point that sometimes we are acted upon by others of no good intention, that someone else's free will has just jammed our gears. Then it would seem useless to overanalyze "our part" beyond knowing we just didn't need to go there, and probably won't ever again.
We can learn from our experience to use our imagination creatively, and this alone can prevent the recurrence of many old karmas. We can always learn more skills of how to move through this ever-changing reality, but must first train our mind to interpret our experience, what our 5 senses bring us, so that we can know the unreal from the real, darkness from light, the impermanent and the permanent, and acquire coping skills that can help us feel more competent in the future through knowledge of how to respond accordingly.
There are a lot of rumors, hopes, and dreams about the coming of "the New Age," and how much things will be different. Still, as long as there are humans, there will be lessons of learning and teaching detachment, dispassion, discrimination, and how to generate good will, or "bodhichitta," as it is termed. With a little effort and mindfulness, we can learn to regard all that comes and goes as part of a greater experience, not take any of it personally, and know the place and function of what presents itself.
When we are able to practice these virtues at will and couple them with a genuine willingness to generate positivity in every moment, whether we're presented with harmony or disharmony, then we will be able to maintain our equilibrium, our perspective, our sense of humor, and our strength and clarity of higher intention despite all the glancing blows of passing fortune. We can get free of the traps of feeling bad, or helpless, or discouraged by the passing parade, and even in the worst of times, be a light in our world, breaking the link between pain and suffering.
© Copyright 2006 Robert Wilkinson
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