I just listened to a CD recording to a conference of Center of Mindfulness on self compassion, which explains the mechanism from many scientific researches. I finally have the scientific studies to explain what I have been doing and experiencing all along
The following are a few things from the studies:
1. Self compassion is much more than self esteem.
2. Self compassion is twice better for our well being than the companionship a good friend would provide.
3. High self compassion is associated with low arousal state.
4. Self compassion enables us to see our suffering as a part of connected human experience, realizing that we are not alone. It is the feeling of isolation from the larger part that causes suffering.
What I have experienced is as following:
The ability and the process of getting to self compassion will be the end result of the journey.
We can sit regularly, we can get to the point of stillness, mindfulness, we can be totally relaxed...but nothing is like when we get to self compassion, really experiencing it with every part of our body and soul.
Have enough meditation practice, and explore the route of self exploration enough, and we will have to get to the point of self compassion.
When we sit and try to stay focused and aware, we find that we are going through the process of dealing with the surfacing of body sensation, emotions, thoughts, memory. Deep down underneath all these, there is this true place of zero.
Although we want to stay in that place of zero, somehow all these sensations, emotions, thoughts, memory keep taking us away from it. Sometimes it feels like we are more interested in all the drama above, because the excitements are more interesting than the emptiness and stillness.
But the type of excitements we are used to actually get our stress hormone going, keeping us on the high of whatever drama bring to us, preventing us to really experience the true happiness of zero.
Once we see this hopeless patterns of going around and around enough, we start to see how much suffering and pain this going around has been causing us. We shouldn't need to do anything to be okay. We are always okay all along, but this going around keeps taking us away from it.
Realizing this is not enough to keep us there. Then another layer of realization emerges, that we deserve to be in that place, and that only us are making the choice and have the power to take us away. This is the point where we need the practice to connect our body to be used to the state of zero, with the high regard, respect, compassion toward ourselves.
This rerquires some repetitive immersion in that place and the dealing with our inner struggles. In the process of each practice, we start to feel this is true within every part of our body and our soul.
Once we have no doubt and no barrier toward this zero state and the high respect and compassion toward self, our inner energy gets flowing and flowing to create and maintain such a state everywhere we go.
Here you may share how the words Eckhart Tolle have affected your life.
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