Tag Archives: relationships

equanimity-love and compassion

I’ve encountered this idea of “equanimity” “being equanimous” etc. recently a lot. The idea is pretty simple at first thought. Treat everyone equally, and then you won’t create any extra “baggage” with them or their soul, which is ultimately a good thing.

Upon further thinking on this idea, I realized how much harder it actually is in real life. To not react with like or dislike. To not react with your ego attached to your emotions. To not be attached to your reaction, the individual, the end result. This is really hard when you start thinking about it. And personally, something I’m going through right now.

And then I started thinking, if I should be treating everyone equally (equanimously), then in theory I should be treating my family the same way I treat classmates, peers, even strangers. For some reason that didn’t sit well with me. I don’t want to treat my parents, husband, family, the same way I treat the cashier at Target. Did I just create a hierarchy? Yeah, pretty much. I realized that I just created a system in my head where I placed my family on a higher rank of “people” then the people that cross my path once or twice. And here I am touting about how everyone deserve to be treated equally. Hello hypocrite!

What does that mean to treat someone with equanimity? In one of my classes yesterday, some students were saying things that I didn’t agree with. The first thing that popped in my head was rebuttals to their arguments. The second thing that popped into my head was that I should just let it go. It is what it is. They feel the way they do, and I can’t change it. I’m treating them with equanimity right? Wrong, because for a split second I thought that non-reaction is better than reaction. I talked to Nandan about this, and essentially the conversation lead to the conclusion that it’s not about inaction or not reacting. It’s about not having that attachment, which eventually leads to a pure love and compassion for everyone.

That’s the whole point of being equanimous (at least in our thought process). To treat everyone, spouse, parents, siblings, friends, strangers, peers, whoever with love and compassion. And that love and compassion should be the same for everyone. There is no hierarchy when it comes to who gets more compassion from you.

One of our classmates had invited the Drepung Monks to her house for a blessing, which was just so beautiful. But, after one of the monks lead a question and answer for a little while. He started talking about duality, and how everything has an opposite. The opposite of love is hate. The opposite of compassion is ill-will. The part that really stood out to me, was when he said that you can’t have both feelings in your mind at the same time. If your mind and heart are filled with hate, there is no room for love. If your mind is filled with ill-will, there’s no room for compassion. Which, then leads to un-equanimity! But, if your mind and heart is filled with love and compassion, there’s no room for hate or ill-will, and then you can act and talk from a true place of equanimity.

That was just so profound to me. We are so caught up in all these feelings of revenge and annoyance and frustration, that we literally have taken over our minds with negative emotions, that there’s no room for the positive and beautiful ones! Instead of focusing on why that person annoys you or irritates you or makes you so angry, why don’t we start thinking about how that person is just another person that deserves our love and respect? Because we let our ego get in the way, for one. But, in general it’s just too hard to love the other person, right? We’re a society of easy-way-out. However, I don’t think this method will work in the long-run.

Having love and compassion for even one person is hard, let alone the rest of the world! There are always going to be things that your friends and family do that just annoy you or put you over the edge. If we start thinking outside of our own self, and the idea that they are effecting me, my ego, we can start acting in different situations in equanimous ways, which will then leak into other realms of our life. Even the cashier at Target will feel your love and compassion!

Love and compassion are the way to go people! And what better time of year than right now to start practicing?

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frustration

It’s been so long since my last blog post, and to be honest with you, I don’t have a lot to say. Life is busy and hard right now. I’m at a point where there are a million things that I need to get done, and that to-do list isn’t getting any shorter and time soon. I had it coming though. Everything was too easy to last as long as it did. But, that’s the beauty of life. There really aren’t any shortcuts and it’s not smooth-sailing 100% of the time.

Lately, I’ve been praying for strength to face life. Ironically, I just ran into this quote, “When I Asked God for Strength, He Gave Me Difficult Situations to Face.” I can’t say that the situations I’m facing are difficult, but they are definitely challenging. They are frustrating. They are annoying and never-ending. Yeah, I guess you can say that they are difficult.

This little quote was such a huge reminder to me, that I am given everything I asked for. Anyone that crosses my path, anything that comes my way are all things that I need at that point in my life. I am creating every moment in my own life. There’s no reason to deflect my frustration or anger or annoyance on anyone else or any other thing.

It’s true, I have been really frustrated and annoyed here and there lately. And, when I look at myself in the mirror, I see nothing wrong. Sometimes, it takes someone else to show me that I’m straying from my true self. Maybe I don’t want to admit it. But, if you’re lucky, you have really awesome friends who will look at you and say, dude, you’re wrong. The only reason I am frustrated is because I allow myself to be frustrated.

This is all a very reflective blog post. These feelings are being unfolded as I type this. It’s amazing what a little introspection can do for you. We have to have awareness of ourselves, and be mindful of what we are exuding to the people and things that surround us every day.

Are you sending positive or negative vibes? You have that power in your own hands. You have the ability to be a source of good energy. I have the power to be a source of good energy for anyone that crosses my path. All humans are inherently good, and all of us can be a fountain of positivity if we aren’t afraid to.

Here’s to hopefully a less frustrated week, and more understanding of the feelings of my own creation.

just keep your heart open

In the beginning of February (it’s really weird to say that by the way, considering that this Friday will be March 1), I went to an Ayurveda seminar in New Mexico on spiritual healing through Vedic rituals. There was a lot I came back with after that weekend, and I could literally go on for a few posts about it. But that’s not what I want to do in this particular post.

In one of the first few sessions we had, Dr. Lad said something that caught my attention. And the reason I’m bringing it up now, is because I was going through my notes, and I saw it written down and underlined, highlighted, all caps, whatever, and it re-caught my attention, and brought back the things I was feeling and thinking at that moment.

“JUST KEEP YOUR HEART OPEN” (not read in a scream-like way, but in the sweetest, old man, loving, and sincere way). And, something about this just really resonated in me. I feel as though this journey I’m taking in life can be perfectly summed up into these 5 words. Everything that I’ve been experiencing these past 10-11, maybe even more, months was perfectly stated in these 5 words. It was as though these words, “just keep your heart open”, were meant for my ears, and quite seriously, my heart.

I can’t recall right now, any other sets of words that have moved me so much, that have really hit a chord for me. Just keep your heart open.

Just keep your heart open, and let the love that surrounds you to fill you. Let the positivity of this universe permeate your being, your essence. Just keep your heart open.

Just keep your heart open and let life happen. Don’t worry about the past or future, just be. Let your faith in whatever you have faith in take over, and truly surrender yourself to the will of the Ultimate.

It’s so hard to do just that though. To not keep a guard up, to not worry, to not micro and macro manage. For me it is at least. I have a problem with living in the moment. I have a problem of worrying too much, of trying to control everything in my life. But, I’m becoming more confident in myself and braver in who I am to witness these things happening, and not be ashamed or scared.

I feel as though you can truly live life to its fullest if we understand this idea of keeping our heart open. Be a lover, a dreamer, a well-wisher, a believer, and just keep your heart open. I think I’ve found my new mantra.

relationships

One of the most important things that goes on in India is visiting family. I haven’t seen a lot of them in 7 years, and a lot of family I’m meeting for the first time! I really didn’t realize how big my family was, until I for real thought about it, while I was at my mom’s mom’s house in the village. There were new relationships and connections with my family every day. It was pretty cool, and way more than I can remember

I started thinking about all of the relationships I have in my life: friendships, personal relationships, family, co-workers, my relationship with my community, and yes, even my Facebook friends. Each one of those relationships play a very crucial role in my spiritual development.

A real relationship is where you are really truly developing into a better version of yourself, ultimately bringing you closer to the Ultimate. Just recently, my best friend and I were talking about how after our friendship rekindled essentially, we’ve been more confident in ourselves, are more optimistic, and are really just happier. This is what a true relationship is about. I think to my friends from college, Bridge Builders, youth camp, whatever situation, and how blessed I am to have found people in whom I can grow closer with the Supreme.

“The true soulmates, those who are really meant for you, they always show up, at the right time, and at the right places. You can’t search for these friendships, they just happen. A real friendship consists of more than social exchange and emotional support. In a real friendship, one plus one always exceeds two. Such friendships need hard work. You can’t plan on coming across such friends; you have to leave the start of such friendships to the chances”

This quote is from a book I just finished reading, “The Alchemy of Well-Being” by Indrajit Garai, and I think it sums up pretty well the essence of a relationship. People come into your life at exactly the right time, when you need them the most. And if they leave, then they’ve played the part they need to make you a better person. This last part is sometimes hard for me to grasp and understand. Why do friendships end? Why do I stop talking to people I once was so close to? Everyone who you cross paths with has a role they play in your life, whether it be to be your best friend, hurt you so that you are able to learn from the experience later on, encourage you to achieve your ultimate goal, to love, whatever. But, not everyone is meant to stay in our life forever. We can learn something about who we are from each encounter.

A relationship should be a mirror reflecting the image of who you really are, and helping you turn your flaws into perfections. Something that I’ve begun to think about is if I’m being a true good friend to those around me. I’m glad that I have so many relationships that really reflect the person I am, and friends who have my back, encourage me in all that I want to accomplish, and tell me when I’m being unrealistic or just dumb.

So, whoever you consider family or friend, love that person/group. They’re here for your personal growth!

“In a real friendship, one plus one always exceeds two.”

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