Work with Emotional Patterns-Kleshas using Buddhist Tools and Prajna Teachings

This is what I know and also what I keep forgetting and so need to practice!  Why do I keep forgetting?  How do I keep allowing my… well, what the Buddhist call kleshas to affect me.  What are kleshas?  Essentially we could say emotions or one definition is “mental states that cloud the mind and manifest in unwholesome action”.  In the modern-day world we often hear them called “emotional patterns”.  Your patterns!  Right?  Your customary and habitual emotional responses.  Yeah, new ager’s want to deny those or push them away and not deal with them out in the open like this.  Here’s what I was writing about in the last blog about my “muggle” klesha.  This is from the writing of Lama Zopa Rinposhe; it is expressing what I wrote about–remembering the nature of emptiness and calling upon the praja/wisdom of the  prajnaparamita (emptiness).  Let’s go right to Rinposhe’s words:

Emptiness is a remedy for the foundation of all delusions—ignorance—so all the other delusions will disappear. The minute one meditates on emptiness, anger for example, will stop. Anger arises when you believe in the false I, false object—all this which does not exist. So when one meditates on emptiness of the self and other objects, there is no foundation for anger. This is the most powerful antidote. But if it arises again, it is because there is no continuation of the meditation; the meditation, the mindfulness, has stopped. The problem is to remember the technique. Once you remember the technique, it always works. When you don’t remember the technique, it is delayed and the delusion, anger and so forth, has already arisen and taken you over. — Lama Zopa

Some of our kleshas can be quite clever and convince us that we are justified and even egg us on to find those descriptive words — the one’s I used in my last blog were… well, there you see?  I’m being tested again to go to those words, reproduce them and once again the klesha pattern gets triggered and those old resentments and aversions become alive.  When that happens, I’ve taken many steps backwards or the Buddhist would say it is loosing merit.

What I do is use my blog to create space around the klesha and slow it down so that I have an opportunity to analyze it–dissect it, if you will.  I heard one lama say it is like creating speed bumps for an speeding out of control car (anger) to slow itself down.

Yeah, it can be like that for us—being overcome by emotions that get triggered from those old patterns.  For me it is the muggle who is my blessing because he gives me the opportunity to practice remaining awake and remembering emptiness helps me to diffuse the bomb of my klesha.  I can be quite indignant, irate and outraged by other sentient beings who, in my judgment and opinion, disrespect animals and nature.  Like with any emotional trigger that any of us experience, the pulse races, the face gets flushed and all those other responses happen but the progress that I’ve made over time is that I am able to catch it sooner and analyze myself and the situation and diffuse the bomb or not let the pattern reach bomb stages in the first place.  I let it go much quicker these days.

What helps me is to remember that the muggle in question and his/her actions or attitudes and so forth are simply ignorance, meaning lack of wisdom, knowledge or information.  I say this without being above or feeling superior in any way.  What evens the playing field in working with that type of klesha is to embrace the knowing that what motivates all sentient beings is that they are seeking happiness and trying to avoid their own suffering.

When I remember this, it helps me very much and then I begin to move my attitude toward compassion for the other, the one I name muggle and also for myself I feel compassion and this helps to transcend the experience, bringing me back to who I truly am.

This is the reason that Buddhism helps me, because of the awareness of mind that it encourages us to have–the practical reality of day-to-day living is acknowledged and the teachings are just as real and practical and grounded.

These are a few thoughts about my last blog and my muggle klesha for the record.  Maybe any reader who comes to this could benefit in some way by applying any wisdom found here to their own life–this is the intent.

Givers, Takers and Complainers — How do we deal with people who always want more? The Oracle QUEEN OF WANDS Answers

May the One Light which brings life to us all draw us together in bonds of goodwill and brotherhood/sisterhood and reveal to us our true relationship to Light.  May the power of Divine Love cast out all separation and fill us with perfect compassion.  May the presence of Divine Wisdom dispel all ignorance and fill us with perfect understanding.  May the Divine Light in which we dwell, as individual members of a single body of Light, inspire us to treat one another in with perfect respect. May we respond to this call with good will, tolerance, a sense of unity and the willingness to act as an agent of Light.

I often hear from clients that they feel unappreciated by their co-workers, bosses, clients and others in their work place.  I’ve had my own personal moments in which I, too, have felt that way.  Maybe it is because we conscientious givers attract takers and complainers?  Maybe we are supposed to be learning to appreciate our selves and ignore the takers and complainers?  Maybe we are to turn to our relationship to Light as in the prayer above for consoling at those times. 

This next part is not me ‘tooting my own horn’; I’m only making a point. In my work as a psychic and a teacher, my perception of myself is that I give unreservedly.  In fact this could maybe be fact checked by most clients who will tell you that I go overtime when I do readings– am not a clock watcher.  In my psychic class, I’ve opened to my depth and offered everything that I’ve been taught and all that I know to  help students.   Yet, there are times that I feel under-appreciated and downright resentful by people’s reactions.  That’s rare however—most people are honorable, respectful and kind. 

Maybe I needed another lesson in how it is to feel underappreciated.  I’ve had a number of clients recently indicate that they felt this way in their lives in their workplace–they’ve been saying that their bosses never seem to be happy and that they work long and hard but it never seems to be enough. 

Anyway, It has been a long time since I, personally, felt that way.  But then again, I don’t work with groups of other people usually–except for the students when they’re willing to engage in project.  Mostly, I enjoy a fairly solitary existence; but I do remember having felt that sense of not being appreciated a few times in my past.  It had been a long time since I felt this way actually.

Then the other day, I had a similar feeling come up in me that my clients have been expressing about their bosses.  And even now the resentful feeling still lingers just a wee bit.  Sometimes, no matter how much you do, there will be someone who thinks they’re a big cheese and who finds a problem with how much they are getting or they don’t like the way they are getting it.  You know that old saying, “they want egg in their beer!”  The English Idiom Dictionary give a meaning for that egg-in-your-been phrase and says, “This expression dates from about 1940 and became widespread during World War II. The origin is unknown, since adding egg to beer does not improve the taste.”  I believe the expression has to do with people who want more but already have plenty; and that was exactly the experience I was a wee bit miffed about. 

I can now sympathize and relate a lot more with some of my clients who feel that they go above-and-beyond in their work,  are not paid exorbitantly, yet are still pushed by demanding employers to give even more!  Maybe I needed a refresher course in what that felt like?

This is not a big issue for me; something that I am in the process of dismissing and releasing.  I sat with if for a few minutes and knew that the person had a bit of an “egg-in-your-beer’ish attitude”.  Probably that individual relates to everyone this way; it has nothing to do with me personally.  This is just the human game and ego playing out—it is my choice to be offended and in the end, I feel confident and optimistic about the fairness of what I do and what I offer by way of my work and in this case the educational materials. 

The course contains a lot of material but for some reason wanted to complain about the teleconference classes that I have not offered for over a year now.  Not offered!  No longer part of the class!  Egg in the beer?  The lack of teleconference classes does not change the quality of the course–just like egg does not improve the quality and taste of beer.  Besides, some people enjoy complaining and trying to intimidate others—this is the world of ego-consciousness that we live in. Whether the person came from that frame-of-mind doesn’t matter; this is how I perceived it and it is my perceptions that need the attention now.  The same may be true of clients who perceive they are being taken advantage of at work–is it partially true or completely true or not true at all?  It doesn’t matter if that’s how it’s perceived–the same way the egg-in-your-beer person perceives their reality.  They may carry a quality of dissatisfaction and feelings of not being given enough that come from their perception of life.  But the oracle is in this post is addressing the one who is on the receiving end of the complaint–the one who gives and feels unappreciated. 

Anyway, I felt like  writing a blog today while I am between clients so I chose that topic since it’s on my mind and I had to dig a little deep to find a troubling question that I felt may be something others could relate to also.  That so I could draw a tarot card and ask the oracle about it.  And in the process of making this post, I came across the invocation that appears at the top and bottom of this post.  Co-incidentally (?) I came across this while I was typing up this post and knew that it was supposed to be included; and so it is.

So the QUESTION  is:  What advice does the oracle have about those times when we feel under-appreciated and resentful because we believe that people want more than we feel it is fair for us to give?  How do we handle our emotions during times when we perceive that we have given a good deal and others do not seem satisfied? 

I shuffled and drew the QUEEN OF WANDS.  And immediately I liked that because she’s confident and secure in herself and she knows she does her best and does not question it. 

Look at the image; does she look like she cares much what people may say about her world and her work?  Not hardly. My eyes keep going to the pyramids behind her, one green (healing) one gold (strength) and the pyramids make me think of Divine Intelligence.  We even see those green and gold colors replicated in her clothing.    I’ve always liked the Queen of Wands because she exemplifies what I’d like to think is the best part of myself–the part that I strive to awaken and maintain.   Confident and optimistic with a humanitarian view of life—her motivation is to serve and give of herself and she’s too optimistic and compassionate and full of love to be troubled by any little ego minds.  She’s the Queen after all and she rules her own world—but with love and kindness. 

The oracle is saying that we need to draw from that archetype that exists within all of us and remember it whenever we feel that we’ve given with a good heart and still find takers and complainers who want ‘egg in their beer’.   The Queen of Wands gives the utmost in any situation and isn’t easily provoked and has faith in her abilities and that is what the oracle is telling us to do about our feelings of under-appreciation–have faith in our abilities, don’t become easily provoked and respond with love and compassion. 

If you have a boss or clients who you feel do not appreciate you or take and yet still complain, in these types of scenarios, what may help is to remember that it is we who rule our world and much like Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “Nobody can insult you without your permission.”  We must hang tough to the qualities of confidence and optimism first-of-all,  and then look to those others who would always have more from us and find love and compassion within us when we think of them or the pattern of energy within us becomes triggered.  

We must remain confident, hopeful, and tolerant while knowing that we do our best; that’s pretty much the bottom line.  We have to shake it off and move on while embracing the qualities of the Queen of Wands. 

And then we can write down the affirmation that is at the top of this post, put it in a special place (maybe even tuck it in our wallet) and read it over at those times.  Here it is again–

May the One Light which brings life to us all draw us together in bonds of goodwill and brotherhood/sisterhood and reveal to us our true relationship to Light.  May the power of Divine Love cast out all separation and fill us with perfect compassion.  May the presence of Divine Wisdom dispel all ignorance and fill us with perfect understanding.  May the Divine Light in which we dwell, as individual members of a single body of Light, inspire us to treat one another in with perfect respect. May we respond to this call with good will, tolerance, a sense of unity and the willingness to act as an agent of Light.