Love & Brahmaviharas | Feb 9, 2023 “Meditation Q & A With Wendy Nash” #05

In this fifth installment of the ongoing live series with Wendy Nash inquiring into meditation practice on and off the cushion we explored some of what can skillfully be conveyed about love, and/or more specifically, the four sublime expression of love aka the Brahmaviharas. It is after all February which is often associated with love (or at least the current day commercial holiday Valentines Day). And due to no Q & A in January we’re doing two in February.

We chat about what we’ve picked up from others in addition to our own current understandings, views, practices, and application of these four immeasurables — loving-kindness, compassion, joy/rejoicing/vicarious joy, and equanimity/peace. We also explore related avenues like how the Buddha is said to have taught forrest dwelling monks loving-kindness for protection, (non-)forgiveness, gratitude, hardness, armoring, pitfalls of Valentines Day, how noticing things in others can unveil blindspots in how we view loved ones, etc.

Wendy mentions this movie

*There’s naturally an ongoing open call for meditation (related) questions for the (roughly) monthly “Meditation Q & A” either by the various social media means listed; integratingpresence[at] or just showing up on Insight Timer live or Wisdom App to type/ask live.*

(Or other ways to) join these Q & A’s when they happen live:


Regular, current and past visitors to Integrating Presence may recall the monthly series “Ask Us Anything” I did with Denny K Miu from August 2020 until January 2022 — partially including and continuing on with Lydia Grace as co-host for awhile until March 2022.

For a few months thereafter I did various Insight Timer live events exploring potential new directions and/or a continuation of the Ask Us Anything format while weaving in other related teachings to these events.

Then, after chats with meditation coach Wendy Nash, it became clear to start a new collaboration similar to “Ask Us Anything” simply and clearly called “Meditation Q & A” especially due to the original intent of the Ask Us Anything’s being “discussions about meditation and related topics.”

Past chats with Wendy:

Audio: Love & Brahmaviharas | Feb 9, 2023 “Meditation Q & A With Wendy Nash” #05

The raw unedited YouTube transcription of this podcast:

Nash with me Wendy how you doing yeah pretty good pretty good I thinkI’ve had fewer changes than you have in the last couple of months so this is fun I do like to say that I’m in Australiaand I’m calling from guppy guppy country and uh you know the thing about aboutbeing in a country which is colonized is to and to recognize that this is Aboriginal country is that there’s ahuge history of Storytelling connection everyone is related to every part everyplace every animal every species and people don’t suddenly pop up out ofnowhere we come from we have a long ancestry and it’s really it’s really Ithink I found it such a beneficial thing for me to think about who are my ancestors and nowthat you’re in a different country and a different Denmark and the historyof the Vikings as well as you know people left and Mark Sweden Norway to gointo Minnesota this huge Swedish population there and yeah so to to kind of look at thehistory of our own countries and also our own personal history and those of our ancestors your your own history soit’s an interesting journey to do so I would encourage you to do that so here we are you have come from somewhere metoo and here we are and let’s see where we are in an hour yes and so just some technical thingshere this is our um roughly monthly meditation q a and this is the fifth one and uh last monthbecause of the big move that I’ve never done anything like that before but couldn’t be more ready and just actuallyactually went really smooth and really look forward to it uh we didn’t have oneso we’re having two this month we’ll have another one later that’s the plan anyway right and uh we thought sincethis is Valentine oh and then welcome to those on wisdom app and then insight timer so inside timer you guys only getto see me so you’re if you want to see Wendy 2 you can catch the replay or you can hop over to YouTube my YouTubechannel and see if you want to see video if you’re into that kind of thing but since the February’s kind of known insome circles for you know Valentine’s Day right and I’m not really actually that familiar with Satan Valentine orthe whole you know the whole Spiel and the the story or whatever and I’ve been jaded in the past from I don’t know nothaving um being in a partnership and just thinking it’s overly commercialized and stuff so but my personal opinions andfeelings aside on that I thought well we could all talk about that to be beneficial and helpful here is uh theBrahma vahara’s and just love in general you know love andum before I say anything much about that you know love you know I love that word obviously but it can also mean to say Ilove ice cream you know and that’s not what we’re talking about here right we’re not talking about amplifying ourpersonal preferences so much but the Brahma vihara’s uh why don’t I just throw it to Wendy and have her um saytalk about the Broadway Hearts instead of me right away oh yeah oh look just before we go there I’ve just had a lookon the YouTube and it says waiting for integrated presence so I’m not I’m not sure what’s happening on YouTube justputting it out there yeah yeah professionalsmoothly it says oops where it seems like one of the streams is having connection issues standby we’re tryingto restore the connection isn’t that interesting I wonder if there’s actually a human being trying to do that I doubtit but we’ll see yeah yeah I don’t think it’s a human I don’t think there’s anybody human in the whole of Googleso you know it’s an interesting thing about love and the Brahma power so let’slet’s talk about the Brahma Harris because there’s four of them uh love compassion joy and peace andI guess there are various translations of them and here we are Valentine’s Day and that’s that’s a big one and manypeople like you said it’s quite difficult I you know romance and youknow feeling like you’re single you’ve been jilted you’ve had a shitty relationshipand I think that when we have our Fam Family histories you knowattachment style that really touches into it people have more connection with a pet often than they do with other members oftheir family but I think that what I have learned with this journey is reallylove for yourself and I that sounds so like I don’t know cringy or somethingbut I the way I see Love Isactually just kindness for yourself because if you’re not very kind to yourself you really you’re no good toanyone if you’re criticizing yourself what you do is criticize everybody else I knew I knew a woman a friend and anacquaintance really and she said I’ve met this new fellow and I said oh great what’s he like ah I can’t fault him Iwas like Wow hard hard did you try please try harder to fault him more you know it’s just such a we we have thisidea that somehow they’ve got to be perfect we’ve got to be perfect and allthis is so all not only unrealistic but unhelpful to to being kind so that’sthat’s the first one so compassion is one which we talk about which is reallyI the way I like to think about it is slightly different I think the DalaiLama has this uh that is more aboutwe are in this together and I guess love is like that too we are in this togetherI’m not helping you you’re not helping me we are just sort of I’m not happy because you’re nothappy but also I’m not able to feel yeah sothere’s something about being really connected in that space joy that was one that I really struggled with I was likewow I that took me a long time to get the hang of and I think with that oneit’s good to ask what stops you feeling joyful in daily life these days you knowat the moment and I felt really guilty because I felt like there’s always you know horrible things on the planet andall of that is true but being a wet blanket is no good to anybody either sofinding that sweet spot between being a Pollyanna cold-hearted Steely person andbeing a miserable gear so that that one there andum and I think Equanimity I think peace spacereally the sense of being in a larger place you know I started off with my uhacknowledgment of country which is saying I come from a larger place I come from a larger spaceand I think that’s a really important thing to acknowledge yeah so that that’s mytake on the front of the I call them the four immeasurable so when I teach peopleI use the four immeasurables because they’re immeasurable in how many timeshow many ways you can practice and how far it spreadsso I like the term immeasurables which is out of the Tibetan rather than Divineabodes because it’s like you know weird and yeah and yes it’s it’s uh it’sa good point I like the sublime abidings that’s one I like the imaginables are great too I keep forgetting that becausethese hard boundless States There’s No Limit right you’re not gonna run out of kindness you don’t have to worry aboutenough going around or stealing someone else’s or I have to get more of this and there’s only a limited Supply like we’reled to believe in life right there’s all these limited resources and we have to be in competition to get them well theseare the exact opposite there is they are immeasurable it’s like the the vast ocean you know I guess maybe someonecould catalog it and but by the time you start cataloging it it’s changed so muchyou know it’s unfathomable it’s it’s it’s really is it’s really hard to measure and so so there is no limit onthese and so I’ll just give my quick rundown and I’m folks have been listening to me before they’ve probably heard a lot of this but these are suchlovely um givers of love too you know if somebody this is what we can talk aboutyou can be more specific and it’s in some regards you know talking about lovedoes it a disservice in some senses but now this is actual tangible things wecan put uh words to um which here I’ll take another short tangent because traditional I think it’sin the Greek some of the the ways of love are like a familial love between familyum you know uh the love between a a child and their parents you know then we have romantic love and then we have likea friend a friendly love or you know um friends and then there’s one that’s called like um was it Agape which islike the ultimate or something like that and those are those are I find those somewhat helpful but these are theseactually it’s not necessarily being to being although we do practice towards beingsthis is more um centered on you know the the kind of the the situation and whichone of these is most appropriate for just about every occurrence in life right so we we meet in general folkswith loving kindness or this Unstoppable friendliness I love that translation too it’s well wishing and even at the evenat the base level I think just an absence of ill will that’s like the Baseline of this you know it when illwill is absent then then we’re that’s loving kindness I mean at least in today’s climate I feel too so uh it’snot like it doesn’t have to be this grandiose thing but authenticity is really important when doing formalpractices but we’ll we’ll get to those in a little bit um compassion for me I like this one ofthis is acknowledging pain because no one gets through this human life withoutexperiencing pain it’s the um it’s also usually the psychological things we addon top that cause the suffering is the stress but when we acknowledge our pain in another’s pain that’s that’s a hugestep a lot of people are acting out just to have their pain acknowledged and they they don’t acknowledge it themselvesum and then there’s also uh I’ll uh do the self-kindness self-compassion here buton uh compassion the formal phrases I use uh acknowledging it and then showingcare I care about it because I can acknowledge it just to kind of wanted to get it to go away but when I reallybring whatever care is available I mean maybe I’m too old-fashioned here butmasculine care is it is quite different than a feminine care traditionally right it doesn’t mean we we care more or lessthey exist often times they express in different ways and just whatever careI’m able to bring to it and then a sincere wish for that Pain to End rightand for it to release and for the for who’s going to be free because yes whilewe’re all in it together we need empathy to connect to even recognize and acknowledge that pain but at some pointwhen do I get dragged under by the the pain and now I mean suffering and now there’s two people suffering instead ofone right so and then just as actionable compassion action uh I like I like justgoing up to someone every once in a while and say hey is everything okay can I help it anyway is there anything Ican do so that way it’s not like me forcing some kind of um high and mighty thing on someone elseit’s giving them first is you know just checking in seeing what’s going on withthem and then having them have the idea of how they might need help or something like that and then this the second oneof mudita right this um this is a rejoicing and of course this is the mostchallenging one too maybe you can go into more details about this but I want to I like the the translation rejoicingsome of the other translations for it are altruistic Joy but that oneuh it’s like how can Joy not be altruistic what’s the you know what isum where’s where’s the greedy joy and I guess there is uh getting you know this shot in Freud where you can get joy atother people’s expense that’s not what we’re talking about that’s really distorted but like this vicarious JoyLiving Through you know like the Dalai Lama said something like you know how many billions of people are there so ifI could be happy for their happiness it increases my chance of Happiness by like a bill or however many billion folks aresaying is on the earth now and then the Equanimity this is uh this is like theum the Crown Jewel of the Brahma baharas but it’s also kind of like the underlying and overarching one that goeswith you know um with the other ones and I like this in the grand apparently loveso it’s the ones that kind of seen it all done it all and they want to help orwe want to help out um with the way we can but we also realize that we have to we can’t livesomeone else’s lives for them right um I can’t am I going to be stepping on theirpath and stepping on their Journey sometimes I just have to say you know you have to make your own decisions hereI’m here for you but I can’t be involved in every moment of your life all the timeum you know and it’s not indifference and it’s you uh that’s the near enemy of it so these have near and far enemies wecan we can talk about those as well but uh yeah it’s like this even Keel pieceis a great translation I love that one for it too yeah um so that’s enough to say from my partfor now for these yeah I was I was thinking as you as you were describingthose I was thinking about an Insight I had this week this this this monthI was um I have a difficult relationship with my she’s my mother she’s she’s uhshe says she’s she says a lot of unkind things it’s justyou know her habit um her upbringing and a lack of awareness and lack ofcuriosity about how it arises and she knows it has an impact but she doesn’t have the Curiosity to go maybe I coulddo something about it so it’s quite painful because I’m the receiving end of that and I don’t want to be and I wantto be close to my mother but it’s it’s it’s painful and it’s painful for both of us theother the other day I was uh catching up with friends for coffee on a Sunday morning at the markets and there was anew lady and I was sitting next to her and shemaybe I’m stereotyping so please don’t take it that way but she she’s a whiteSouth African raised on a farm hard really really hard andshe she had had cancer her daughter had been killed Ilater found out that it was to do with the truck driver um crashed into herand she was on life support and the parents had to decide tohad to decide that no more so like they couldn’t go ahead with itso it was completely awful and my my mother’s done the same thing my myyounger sister was born with a terminal illness and 18 months later she died and and they they had to get to a decisionthis is them in the 60s you know to to let her go so it was very interestingtalking with this lady where I just felt this hardness real hardness in the body inthe psyche in the mind the whole body felt incredibly hardand I just left a little bit like ah get me away from that woman you know I justwhat is that and then in the coming day I was like ohmy gosh she’s completely traumatized absolutelyfrom her bones outwards from the marrow outwards deeply traumatized farming lifeis hard it’s really really hard and she says she had to leave South Africa because of her safety because after thetransition from apartheid a lot of South Africans white South Africans have landed up here in Australiaum and so she felt unsafe her daughter had been killed her she had been part of thatprocess for her daughter to die and she had arrived here and her visaconditions don’t allow her to have any Social Security so most Australians havesocial security um but she doesn’t have it and she’s 70 and her husband is dementing and she isthe carer and they have to live kind of week by week really toughand this I just the next day I could feel myself soften into that traumaand it was a very interesting experience because then I was like oh my mother is actually just reallytraumatized and I’ve never thought you know I’ve done a lot of therapy I’ve done a lot of meditation practice lovingkindness for difficult people is huge huge part of my practice and so it was very interesting to go Ifinally have compassion for my mother I’m 56. but it’s very hard because she says somany horrible things and and I just thought wow she wouldn’t allow herself to have anysoftness because she doesn’t have that she hasn’t got that training but it was like sitting next to thiswoman whose body was so hard I knew I was familiar with that hardnessthen I could open to their love that I have for my motherbecause I saw that actually I had an extra bit of information about the levelof trauma that this woman had experienced and my mother too has experienced that I’m sure she had mymother has complex PTSD and I’m sure this woman did too soum yeah it was a very interesting this was interesting to explore that in this and I hadn’t I hadn’t got to bring it untiljust now it was an interesting umpoint of clarity we we can think that we have to try to lovebut in some way I had to stop trying to love and just allow myself to receivethis other woman first before I could kind of move moveover into the other space this is an interesting Journey because it did andthat’s a different form of love and a different form of compassion it really is and this this teachings ofthese mirrors I’ve had this happen before those of us who are you know fairly empathic and sensitive uh it’sreally challenging to be around this right because as we meditate more and more our sensitivity level increasesright and so what once was no big deal to us now it can really seep in deep andwe can feel the pain deeply of others and and then sometimes there are certainthings that we don’t see in others too sometimes the closer we are to people the harder it is to see so when we cankind of get some distance and then you actually I I do this a lot of times I see different traits of other people ofsomeone and someone else and then these connections come like that that’s it’s really amazing and umyeah a lot of times too um what’s helped me is knowing thathowever I want to relate or not the other person it’s it’s it’s theirJourney right it shows us where they’re at on uh their journey in no matter how much I want to um be able to relate orbring what I want to a relationship a lot of times you know it’s justum yeah I don’t know how to put that it uh these practices help it that’s themain thing they’re they’re for us individually the most and Wendy talked about at the very beginning howum you know self-love and yeah and at a certain time it does seem like cringing or even a consolation prize at best butwe cannot really um express love to another in the ways that we want unlesswe have it for ourselves right we what is this saying that we can all um others can only relate to us as deeply asthey’ve met themselves you know so if someone hasn’t met themselves deeply they’re not going to be able to meet uson the same level that that we’ve met ourselves at too yeah that’s a really good point that’spretty cool we’ve got some people listening in so a couple of things on the technical YouTube still isn’t up sojust giving you a heads up that might that might be because I changed my password so hopefully that is so that’swhat’s coming to mind and that’s my bet on that so we’ll see okay and so that’sone and the other is we have some people listening I don’t know how many people we’ve got 24 meditators here so to uhyou if you are listening or you are listening or you’ve certainly got the icon on uh please ask us a questionbecause it’s really nice to have some engagement from people who are just hanging in there and no one will crowdyour space because we hardly ever get questions so trust me it’ll be fine yes and uh if you just put a note in thereif you don’t want us to use your name or anything like that and maybe some ideas for some questions and actually I don’tknow about the YouTube thing that could be wrong too we’ll we’ll figure it out there I’ll figure it out laterum so the Bravo viharas yeah what what do you guys do you have any uh you know questions about love it it seems itseems uh kind of funny but I mean like um maybe like how do people know theirtheir being love how do they know how do how does one know that they’re showing themselves adequate love and you knowthis thing about um we find we’re blaming others are we’reblaming ourselves and then we find out we shouldn’t blame ourselves so then we blame ourselves for blaming ourselves right this this stack upon stack and Iwant to go back to safety though after you say what you want to say Wendy because that is not only for just abouteverybody especially those in a spiritual path a lot of our practices and all this is for safety so and thatcomes into all the trauma and stuff as well but you were you were getting ready to say yeah I was I think what I hadn’trealized for a long time so I always thought that I had to love others so itwas me to another and then I realized actually the thebest form of love is noticing what the acts of kindness and care that othershave for me whether it’s opening a door making a cup of teaum just even you know your girlfriend buys food in the the I mean you’re inDenmark now so she’s doing a huge amount for you she’s she she can read the food labels in the supermarket and you can’tdo that yet so and some of the the pronunciation of Danish is very sort ofunfamiliar it’s it’s difficult to distinguish sometimes because it’s a such a natural languageum and by I I think one of the the easiest waysto love someone is to receive their acts of kindnessto acknowledge it so things like my part we have breakfast downstairs in the it’ssummer for us so at downstairs in the garden and we take the trade down and I thenstart watering the garden and he goes upstairs and depending on how much time he’s got he might only havetime to do one dish or maybe not even do a dish before he has to rush out the door but the fact that he even took thetray upstairs is an act of love and it’s an it’s something to appreciate becauseotherwise I’ve got to do it and I’ve come from this very critical family systemand so to feel to for me to look forkindness in others helps me feel it’s like training my mindin love so we we have a little tropical Loveland kind of thing and that ABBA song is oneof my favorites I was eight in 1974 so I just always loved that little songand um a 1974 was the Heyday of ever soum and I think it really creates this amazing thing because when we when weum when we say something when we point out the fault of another actually it makesus unsafe so you wanted to talk about safety and I used to think that getting angry and speaking my mind was going tomake me safe because that was an act of kind of self-preservation but what I what I did at one point is I actuallynoticed how seldom it made me safe and how frequently it made me unsafe sothat’s my little segue over to safety Josh yes and the armoring you talked about the the farmer gal put on before alot of people think that armoring is and it does it sometimes but then nothing else can get through you know love andkindness and one of these things I’ve noticed is um uh it it calms the nervoussystem it allows it to unwind and relax and feel how it feels in the body andthese other two points I think if there’s if there were to be two more Brahma viharas I would say yes thisgratitude uh and that’s what when he’s talking about she’s grateful for these these these acts of kindness and that’salso you know are the mindfulness comes hand in hand with that because sometimes we don’t even notice you know with themindfulness practice we can notice more and more and so instead of looking at the world from a default of oh crap notthis again or just defaulting to negativity all the time which I’m not saying blow off negativity all the timethey can do the opposite where we don’t want to see anything negative whatsoever there’s that type of person too but Iknow for me I was jaded and before I started these practices I mean I was shut down too and then I would lash outum but it was just this default of uh and it’s just amazing how much I’ve changed it’s just these people arestupid uh this is my default Outlook that these people are stupid doesn’t matter that Ilive in the states either so that they’re um they’re doing it wrongand why are they doing that and I’m just this sets the superiority I had sometimes right I mean it seems soridiculous now because it was to think of that but that actually came from a deep sense of pain right that thatprojection of that out there um so now in kind of it it can changeour view of the world it’s a more skillful and wise view like we yes weall are suffering including me well suffering might be a strong word but we all experience stress and we all want tobe happy so these other two so that’s um one that really helped me though and it draggedme out of holes was forgiveness because um you know we can’t force forgiveness it will come when it when it comes youknow but there there are formal practices for forgiveness too um you know three-way like askinganother for forgiveness whether they’re there or not um asking them to forgive me and thenforgiving myself you know being raised in a Christian background it was always had the Forgiveness had to come fromoutside myself well that’s great too but there’s also an option to forgive myself let me balance that with with theresolve not to do it again the unwholesome unskillful unwise acts that I’mum that harm me and harmed others to yes get forgiveness but then resolve that okay I know where that leads it’s notgoing to help me or anybody else yes okay can I can I put in something about forgiveness because I think it’sokay so the word I the Ken McLeod did a really fantastic do you subscribe totricycle no I I may read articles here and there for them sure yeah okay theyhave I really like it it gives you one free one movie a month and you get I think it’s like I can’t remember howmuch it is it’s like 60 U.S a year and I get one free movie a month which Ireally like um and all sorts of different aspects of Buddhism so it’s quite it’s quite niceto read all that until the Articles sometimes are really amazing and you get a little daily snippet I’m I probablyshouldn’t be promoting tricycle but I really like it oh it is in their archives online are really goodI mean especially for people starting out very clear very straightforward but not shallow either so yeah and they haveamazing teachers so um but Ken McLeod who’s a very seniorTibetan Buddhist um translator and he who said forgiveness in the Buddhist sense is notthe same as forgiveness in the Christian sense andforgiveness so if you know like the word inEnglish Danish German French so in French it’s bardonyyou know so for give in Swedish it’sso it’s to give so it’s the same yeahum and I’ve checked with Danish and people it’s exactly the same in Dutch and other places in Germanand it’s actually to do with indebtedness so it’s quite a different structure all together so whatforgiveness is about is saying you have wronged me and I have a right to claimpunishment for that and forgiveness is saying I forgo thatright to punish you so that’s what forgiveness meansactually and and when I when that happened it’s like okay and that’s notthe same as saying I resent that you hurt me which is and I’m angry and I’mhurt you know like that’s a different thing and then you have to go into the resentment so it’s quite a differentthing I’ve had I’ve been working with forgiveness you know because my mum’s so difficult and other family members aswell and lots of other difficult painful situations in my life and and the thing about forgivenessthat I saw a movie and it was actually a Christian woman and it was actually about South Africa it was to do withpost-apartheid South Africa and if you’re aware of South African politics there’s the Truth and ReconciliationCommission which was put into place after Nelson Mandela stepped up and he wanted to createamnesty for a few people so after in post-apartheid South Africa there was ablack man who blew up the pub where a white woman’s daughter was drinking andthe daughter was killed and she she was clearly very distressed andshe said I want to know who this person was who created that anyway so there wasthis whole legal thing and he said II I will come forward and meet you as a person away from the media I’ll comeforward and actually she wanted to know his perspective and he said I did itbecause that I felt that there hadn’t been enough um recognition of the harm and I peoplewere using amnesty to not take responsibility it was like a skirtingout and the white generals the white police were had been brutal and theydidn’t own up to that and he said I was just really angry that these generals got away withit and she said this is really important she saidI had wondered about that so he had come forwardshe had she had said I want to meet him he had come forward she had gone yeahthat’s right I had wondered about that and then he came came forward and I metand then she said do you have are you Christian and he said I’m not Christian but I am spiritual and they met and nowthey work together on reconciliation and forgiveness around the world with Palestinian Israel all that sort ofstuff but I don’t believe that you can do forgiveness unless both parties arecoming together and she she for went if that’s a word the right for him to bepunished so he didn’t go into jail um they instead work together onforgiveness around the world so that’s a kind of a roundabout kind of way but Ithink it’s a really important thing to talk about with forgiveness because we can think that it’s not about resentmentand I’ve I see so much spiritual bypassing about forgiveness and peoplesaying oh you know I I came to terms with my father you know he behaved badlywhen I was a child and you it’s it’s like so thick with bypassing and denialyou can really feel that rig and basically what she’s saying is I’m still really pissed off and resentful of mydad died and I’m not going to give up my right to be resentful so sorry about that long no description this is areally important topic I feel because I’ve I’ve come into different aspects ofthis including that as well and I thank you so much for the etymology of thisword too because um yeah I guess people don’t and I didn’t really even realize theunderlying so if it’s like that first if that word was created for that intent then that’s going to follow that word atleast you know or subconsciously unconsciously throughout it and it just goes to show how much of a debt-basedsociety we are how many people are in debt but this is a different type of debt we’re talking about and then whenmost people maybe there’s a cognitive dissonance here because most people don’t think of it like that obviouslyright and so the resentment thing I think that’s what we’re focusing on here so maybe we need to come up with abetter English word for what we’re talking about here but yeah the resentment thing if that’s a key elementof this as well and I just want to say that sometimes I mean you know when wetalk about perpetrators too in in this case um there’s not so much resentment it’sjust just kind of um well there’s these two protectors here in octopus right theGuardians of the world well there’s this deep sense of Shame and regret for my uh one’s actions that they done sometimesright so that’s where you have to reach out to someone to ask them to forgive the me because they’ve come to wake upor just I’m just using me right because it’s not necessarily I’ve been the victim I’ve been the victimizer and thenwe get these cycles of victim victimizer where one will get victimized and then turn on to be the victimizer and justgoes on and on and on so this is what I’m trying to address here with this and it’s kind of a beautiful happy ending orconsolation that the story you mentioned I’ve heard similar stories where you know someone shot their their um theirum their their stuff their offspring right and it’s it’s coming to court and somebody might know the exact story I’mtalking about but instead of wanting you know full Justice to to have them locked away like people are really and theyhave every right to be right but this woman she she wanted to get to know the one that killed her son and I forget allthe different kind of stories that went on like how she got to know him and stuff like that and the the guy thatkilled her son or whoever it was was really taken aback that she would want to do something like this and it wasjust really profound to hear this story um a few other things here with this is yes this is really important that thisdoes not excuse their actions so if there’s abuse just because we forgivesomeone or ask for forgiveness that’s the main takeaway here before and also Idid a talk about this earlier allowing yourself not to forgive so those on the spiritual journey could beat themselvesup oh I should forgive this person you know but but no you you don’t you don’thave you don’t have to you know it needs to be authentic it and it’ll come at the right time when it’s ready so no need tobeat yourself up if you can’t forgive and it does not excuse the action because if it did well then that’s notgoing to stop these cycles of victim victim victimizer cycles that go on and on and onyeah so I the the I was thinking about something that Elizabeth matters namgalwho’s uh in Colorado and she umshe was married to a Tibetan Master uh to get control andshe just says sometimes my heart is likea dry seed and she says that you know and if yousee the Dalai Lama when he’s talking with the local Tibetans he’s like come on it’s gonna be so stupid get get youract together and he’s really like with the western season I was like this lovely Grandpa figure but with thelocals he’s like completely come on hurry up so you know he’s impatient and mean soI mean I don’t speak to it and I don’t know what he’s saying so yeah well that’s that’s right it’s just like someum guys and their buddies too like they’re they’re close buddies they you know don’t give them a lot of slack butthen they can be really kind to you know um newcomers or things like this too soyeah it’s it’s really interesting but were you going somewhere with that um Iguess I’m missing the disconnect between how the Dalai Lama treats uh thattreatment and then and then also the dry seed so I guess I’m missing something here with that so so you said you knowdon’t give yourself a hard time for the fact that you can’t forgive sometimesyour heart is like a dry seed and that is just the reality I just had a clientbefore here and he’s about to go overseas and he’s going I’m seeing all my friends and I’m catching up witheverybody before I head over to Europe for a you know a month or something and I’m just not really present I was likeyeah of course you’re not present because you’ve got a million things on your mind and you’re not give yourselfsome slack and I think there is like I was we were so we’ve got here next to onthe screen we’ve got the uh kaliana mitasuta which is about youknow that we were practicing before and I was looking at that and I felt really burdened by the intensity of it and howyou know you’re supposed to be like this and you’re you know this is what should be done by a skilled who’s skilled ingoodness and I’m thinking well either I’m good or I’m horrible because like I I don’t fit all that all the timeyou know and so does that make me a really bad person or whatever soit’s a good point Wendy I like to look at it as like an aspiration okay I’mnowhere near the Buddha but I can be inspired by this right this is a andthen there’s practices you know it’s not like well I don’t I could never see myself getting anywhere close to this soI just need to throw it all away and just oh that’s a nice poem or something like that which it is it’s such a lovelylanguage to me but knowing that yeah when I’m comparing myself to the Buddha and you know I’m not going to be thereright away this is going to take a time in practice and it can be I look at it as more like an inspiration but that’sright I mean yeah this stuff we’ll see how kind of beautiful and heart-wrenching and intense and but alsoat the same time relaxing and relieving it’s only two short paragraphs but would you like me to read the first one orwould you like yeah yeah let’s let’s do it we’ve talked about we’ve got 40 we’ve got 40 people online now and please feelwelcome to post a question I can’t see anything I don’t know either Josh you’ve got anything on your side but I can’tsee anything I haven’t seen any questions either and and one of the things is I’m not present on the insighttimer screen I’m looking at Wendy on another screen so I apologize if there’s some kind of weird disconnect with me oninsight timer and then people hearing Wendy’s like disembodied voice on minered microphone through my laptop speaker so it’s not ideal but I’m glad you guysare here and listening um so this is um translated by the um amaravati Sanghaand um yeah anyway so I this is one of my favorite translations of this and Ithink Spirit Rock put this out on a mailer uh that they did umI’m gonna post it in the in the um yeah if anybody wants to read it you caneither say it along as you want to go yeah good idea oh damn I can’t oh that’s not gonna login so I do it right now okay I may as well log inwell I’ve got it there so that’s the link if it shows up in the link sometimes yeah insight timer blockslinks so let me see if I can get around that really briefly here by doing a herewe’ve done it I’ve done it I’ve done it okay so showing up does anybody see the link inthe chat I can see that it is in the chat okay and by the way you’re completely Frozenon screen so oh no okay okay all right YouTube up and running Csays well good okay and so hopefully the Link’s in there you guys can follow along or you can just go to insighttimer I’m sorry um access to and type in uhI think meant to suit or just searches yeahyeah so see if you have a question post it and then we’ll respond to that after we’ve read the verses yes anything itdoesn’t even have to be on topic it can be about your meditation practice whatever you’d like any kind of questionokay so this is the um the metasuta the Buddhist words on loving kindness thisis an English translation obviously this is what should be done by one whois skilled in goodness and who knows the path of peace let them be able and uprightstraightforward and gentle in speech humble and not conceited contented andeasily satisfied unburdened with duties and Frugal in their wayspeaceful and calm and wise and skillfulnot proud or demanding in nature let them not do the slightest thing that thewise would later reprove wishing in gladness and in safety may all beings beat ease whether living being whatever living beings there may be whether theyare weak or strong emitting none the great or the mighty medium short orsmall the scene and the Unseen those living near and far away those born andto be born May all beings be at ease but I’ll go on my bit so Maya’s likeyeah so be be comfortable with the fact that you are not able to do that there you go so here’s the second verse letnone deceive another or despise any being in any statelet none through anger or ill will wish harm upon anothereven as a child protects with her life her child her only childso with a boundless heart should one cherish all living beingsradiating kindness all over the entire world spreading upwards to the skies anddownwards to the depths outwards and unbounded free from hatred and ill will whetherstanding or walking seated or lying down free from drowsinessone should sustain this recollection this is said to be the sublime abidingby not holding to fixed views the pure-hearted one having Clarity ofvision being freed from all sense desires is not born again into thisworld so it’s so beautiful and to pick up where Ium we were talking about safety and so this is a little background here there was one point in the sutas where theBuddha the historical Buddha there was these monks practicing or maybe even told them to go practice in thisWilderness Area but they were getting assailed with these you know these um different spirits and tree spirits andall these different beings and stuff and so they couldn’t stay on their meditation uh and and the Buddha camealong and said well they feel threatened you’re in their space you know you’re invading their territory basically andyou’re not really giving them um they’re they’re kind of scared of you they’re trying to chase you off and hehe supposedly gave them this so This predates the Buddha I guess he learned this some other time is what it’s itsaid right and he told them to to practice this and my phrases areum when I well if anyone doesn’t know one of the traditional ways to do this is you bring a being to mind and then animage in one’s mind in practice and then you kind of tap into the emotions or how you feel the the felt sense of it andthen repeat phrases so mine are may you be safe internally and externallyso yes this wishing in gladness and in safety that line there right and thenthis notion of um may you be happy and joyful it’s wellwishing maybe um healthy and strong so this is youknow uh this it’s it’s not kind of like a lip dishrag here you also want to be healthy and strong because you’re you’rewanting the best for your your child your only child I mean and then um may you live with ease that’s the big oneright it’s repeated twice here uh that you don’t have to you know worry about this armoring that you can relax and bein your own skin and let your nervous system um you know unwind and the safety is toothis is also known as a protective meditation because other beings can sense that we’re not a threat to themthey don’t have to be on guard they can sense that we have their best interest in mind right and we’re not we’re notdoing this for selfish purposes ideally right and then the notion of may you umrealize Awakening and be free that’s another one of my phrases and so that goes towards the end here well this isnot just you know kind of lovey-dovey um you know feel good kind of Buddhistthing no this is this supports full Awakening it full releaseLiberation you know freedom from suffering freedom from stress so yeah it’s such a I I look at more asan inspiration instead of I’m falling short of it right because yes obviously we all we’re all falling falling shortof it but yeah it’s this lovely thing here you see that probably says somethingabout the difference of it you you kind of are going well that’d be a nice idea I’ll that’s the time that’s the goalwhereas I go well that just seems so impossible I’ll just give up now and Iguess you know I’m sort of looking at it I’m thinking oh I feel so like we’re you know whydon’t they say something like yeah um about speech that you see that life isfunny and ludicrous that you have a lightness that you are joyful in your heart like that’s not there so I that’syou know that’s that’s the only one thing that’s a really good question yeah um let’s seewhat where how can I I um so well if you if you cherish all livingbeings kindness all over the world I think yeah the light-heartedness would to be people to put them at ease I thinkthat’s where the lightheartedness comes so if that’s the best way to put myself and others at ease I think that’s greatbecause you we all know how humor and you know and laughter it just cuts through everything and it kind of breaksup this dense energy right and at the same time humor often the good stuff points to something is true thatnobody’s really said before but it it points out the truth in a way that’s not really super intense it’s something thateverybody can relate to right and on all different levels so I think humor is a great way to to put people at ease youknow and even small talk you know sometimes I you know there’s this frivolous talk but sometimes you knowsmall talks needed to to kind of cut that tension in the air for a little bit puts put people at ease yeah and like Isay this is uh as far as being too daunting too much to live up to just an absence of ill will I mean that’sas long as we have an absence of ill will and not only you know this even before that probably I would be safe toGuess that most everybody here hasn’t killed another human being today but not everybody on Earth can say that and howmany times do we take that for granted right you know yeah it’s interesting you knowlike about killing killing people in love have you seen the movie The work where there’s there’s these uh laypeople guys going to Folsom Prison so there are a whole lot of prisoners whoare kind of in these I guess self-help groups in in Folsom Prison and there’sthe lay Community who kind of come in and they do it I guess every year every second year yes I work with a buddy ofmy Denny was in a group in San Francisco right is it Folsom in San Francisco or which one am I yes with the big Zenpractitioners oh yes it’s a um all the lovely things I hear out there please continue yeah so they did there’s amovie you can watch about it’s called the work and there are these like biglies you know and the love that they have I mean they’d be really scary if Imet them I’d be like completely you know scared um run the other waybut they were just right first Wendy at first I think you were yeah I mean I’dwant to have context around it let me put it that way you know I mean you know there’s a lot of things that I cross thestreet I will cross the street if there’s a man walking on the same side of the footpath I will cross the streetit’s nothing to do with anyone’s color I just always cross the street that’s my personal safety pin well yeah thesidewalks really aren’t that wide so but I do that sometimes with both genders by the way sir whatever gender we want tosign so because I know that’s a topic but um souh what was I think these these guys are really able to meet so it’s a movie andthere was this one guy and he kind of didn’t have any big issuesand he was like a normal white middle-class kid who just had a bit ofdad’s stuff you know guys they they’re always wanting approval from their dads you know that it just is such a bigthing and and Men somehow for some reason fathers don’t want to tell theirsons gee I’m proud of you or I really approve of the way that you do things for some reasonguys just don’t go there I’m not sure what that is andum but these guys who had dealt with huge amounts of abuse and violence wereable to meet this guy this white guy in the middle class background and justreally be with him it was really beautiful Act of love and it’s aninteresting film because they’re people who are working through stuff andand the love that the black guys or the I think they’re all black not all ofthem the prisoners have for the lay people is really is really beautiful tosee so that’s quite a nice rich way of looking at loveit is and I just like in general the um prison as a metaphor for you know thethe we’ve got the inmates who you know who are on in the inside and that whole culture but in a way aren’t we allprisoners to something right until we’re completely awakened like what what arethe things that we beat ourselves up for that wish you know that we’re clinging to you know the the things where wedon’t have freedom from suffering yet in a way we’re we’re a prisoner in a sense to those of course metaphorically andit’s not to say that you know well you know what they’re so not for another notcomparable exactly yeah but it’s just like in a way we all have something we’re working on right and it’sdefinitely not to the same extent as what they’re doing there and then not to downsize it at all and um actuallythere’s so much inspiration that can be drawn from those those stories the San Francisco Zen Center I know is reallyinvolved in in that in that type of Outreach work and it’s amazing the things I hear it’s gonna beyeah so we’re we’re coming up to the end Josh soum I wanted to say thanks to C for keeping an eye out on the I.T stuff and it’s working and the suggestions and Ididn’t go exit and log in and log out I just felt like I ran out of time but Iwill think about doing that next time thank you very much for your suggestion um what would closing words for the sortof like the next few minutes what what do you how what’s you’re in this newrelationship in Denmark in a new country there’s a lot of new things happeningyes and I guess weekends since I’m on and go ahead and you were saying yeah soin terms of love compassion joy and and equanimityyou know how are you applying that In This Very two very new situationsdisorientating so juicy right people love talking aboutrelationships and uh I know so maybe we’ll save that for the next time because I really want to kind of sitwith that and know what’s appropriate and not to say about that uh when it comes to anotherum but for myself yeah it’s um you know what I I think I and then I think I’mgonna just delay this because I can’t plug my next insight timer event where I’m going to go into this and talk aboutjust for the short amount of time I’ve been here you know two weeks or so of the things I’ve noticed uh in Denmark uhin general about all the things which is probably premature and I reserve the right to change those later right butthen how to apply those to the meditation practice so it’s just not my travel log which was it’s it’s it’s okayenough right but if I can use those as qualities to boost and enhance our ownmeditation practice I want to look at it from that and then once I explore that then I think I’ll have a better groundand once I sit with this of how to explore these more in relationship andwhat Wendy said in the context of you know putting all my stuff into storage and not having a place to go when I comeback and um but I think we’ll pick this up again uh next month with loving the Brahma ofthe hearts because it’s it’s a huge um topic and I love how Wendy broughtum kind of uh personal antidotes here in her own practice into it as well as these inspiring real life stories whichI know people can really connect to and I can too I just happen to not be able to relate them as nowhere near as asgood as windy so we make this good uh Coast host and co-host or dual co-hosting this so yeah yep but I guessto recap some of the things you know safety forgiveness gratitude the for Brahma the horrorsum kind of our own um our Wendy’s experience with with her mom and how this is practice and some of some of myrelations of you know how I viewed how I used to view the world as well so yeahso if you guys have any experiences to share with this too it doesn’t necessarily have to be questions that you totally forget to tell people tofree feel free to just chat amongst yourselves right in in the chat room and we can draw on that too sharingexperiences too it doesn’t necessarily have to be questions you know or or I can frame them in questions for Wendyand I too from just how you you all would like to share um your experiences with love and theBrahma baharas and Beyond well we had 68 meditators at one pointit’s now gone down 64 because I guess it’s dinner time maybe it’s Australia yeah because it’s dinner time here it’sin in Queensland where I am it’s it’s uh well and it’s seven o’clock we have a guestwaiting I just now noticed that do we want to take it do we no let’s take it we I can I can I can go over I can goover oh the guest is left my bad so anyway so false alarm um but if you wantto join just uh you’ll you’ll see if you can go to insight timer live or my website integrating presents you canlook and join next time and ask and we can take calls from wisdom app too and we had 10 or so people joined fromwisdom map too so all right guys um and you’re welcome to reach out ahead of time and ask questions too or shareanything you’d like with Wendy or I for the next one coming up um it’ll be up I’ll announce it soon soyeah and I want to say for if you are lonely at on Valentine’s Day and youfeel a bit about being single I spend a lot of time being single so I totally get it and it’s a it’s a shittytime you know it’s the biggest high suicide rate um is one of the high suicide rates daysdefinitely so be kind to yourself um you know just if you can’t loveanybody else just love yourself yes and I mean if we bring a little bit of wisdom realize it is a commercialholiday or at least it has been commercialized so it’s there’s a lot of money involved and that’s to me I meanthat’s that’s great if that’s there but that’s not what this is all about you know commercializing it right in myopinion yeah that’s what I feel it was just it was a card you know it’s uh it’s an it’s an Irish thing I think and it’sjust it was a cow it was a very sweet gesture to say oh you know I like this person and um yeah it wasn’t amultimedia and Rose month million dollar Rose industry that it’s become Ishouldn’t think that we’ll do anything in fact I have a feeling I’m getting up at seven o’clock to do a podcastinterview and I’m probably going to go to bed at eight o’clock so you know I it doesn’tmatter whether I’m in a relationship or not but I just kind of don’t really celebrate it so there you goall right well I’m gonna I’m gonna go because um It’s Time yep all right well thanksWendy and thank you all for listening in and joining and um all the all the best to you and uhencouragement for your probably heart practice and we can Aspire at least toless ill will practical steps and practicing yep yep for ourselves andothers yep absolutely all right bye nowbye everyone

Published by josh dippold

One thought on “Love & Brahmaviharas | Feb 9, 2023 “Meditation Q & A With Wendy Nash” #05

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