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Meditation for Working with Difficulties

Lesson 4 Chapter 1

You can use this practice to work with difficult emotions or body sensations
Find a posture that's comfortable to you
And then check inside your body and try to locate a part of your body that feels good to you right now


Pleasant, safe, at ease,
Or at the very least, neutral
You can check out your hands or feet or legs
But let your attention go to this pleasant part of your body


Hands or feet or wherever you've chosen
And let your attention rest there
Feel it
Sense it
Notice what those sensations are


Let your mind relax a bit
Feeling that part of the body
And now if there's something difficult that's happening for you
A difficult emotion, or a physical sensation that's hard
Let your attention go to that


So it may be an aching in your shoulder or back
Or a headache
Or it could be a sense of sadness
Or anxiety
Or anger


Where do you feel that sensation in your body
Where do you feel that emotion in your body
Notice it
Just notice it for one moment
Tap into it
Feel it
Make sure to breathe


And now return your attention back down to that area that feels at ease
Your hands or feet or legs
And just let yourself stay there for a moment
Feeling it sensing it
Relaxing. maintaining the mindfulness


Yet giving yourself a break from what could be potentially overwhelming to feel
And now once again return your attention to that part of the body that feels unpleasant
The body ache or pain
Or the emotion the sensations of the emotion in your body
The vibrations in your chest
Or the clenching in your belly
Or the tightness in your jaw


Just notice
And breathe
And let it be there
Let whatever is there, be there
And then bring your attention again back down to this pleasant or neutral part of the body


Hands, feet, so forth
Relaxing
Staying present and alert
Feeling the safety
The connection in that place
Now let yourself stay connected to this place


But see if you can cast what we might call a sidelong glance at the difficult area in your body
Is it possible to still feel connected to you body in the area that feels good
And yet know there's something going on that feels unpleasant
And just let it be there


Keeping maybe 75% of your attention on the part that feels peaceful and at ease
Still breathing
Casting the side long glance at this difficult area
Noticing what happens to it, is it growing or shrinking
Is it changing, shifting into something else
Becoming aware of whatever it is it's doing
Relaxing, breathing


And now see if you can bring some loving kindness
Just some kindness to yourself for whatever you're feeling right now
Physical pain, emotional pain
Hold yourself with kindness
You're not the only one
So may we all be free from our pain and our suffering
May we all have happiness
[bell rings]

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