Tonglen by Pema Chödrön

 

 

So begin with just a śamatha vipassana.

 

Begin with just — listen to the gong and let your mind rest in this sense of openness and stillness.

Begin to breathe in. Completely and fully.

Taking in dark, heavy, hot feeling of claustrophobia.

Just taking it completely into your being.

Breathing out — light, cool, and refreshing.

 

Radiating it out throughout this whole room.

Across the mountains.

Letting it dissolve out all over the world.

And breathing in and out again.

Dark, heavy and hot.

 

Taking it in completely.

Breathing out light, cool, and refreshing.

Radiating it out.

360 degrees.

 

Do this until it really feels synchronized with the breath.

Heaviness, darkness coming in.

The freshness, lightness going out.

 

Take a very deep in-breath.

Relax —- an expansive out-breath.

 

Opening your being to the dark, and heavy, and painful — as you breathe in.

Just open to it as you breath in.

Then just let go and send out a sense of freshness, light.

 

Then when you feel ready, move onto a very real situation

Begin to do Tonglen for another person.

Suggesting that you do it for someone very close to you.

 

Particularly a family member.

Breathing in — with the wish that they be free of suffering — and sending them out — the wish that they have happiness and whatever would make them happy.

Breathing in— with the wish that they be free of suffering — taking in their suffering — sending out the sense of relief, spaciousness, happiness to them.

 

And then as soon as possible

Extend that further to all the people who are in the same situation as your family member.

 

If something gets in the way and this isn’t possible.

Keep this practice real by just shifting the attention and doing Tonglen with the feeling that’s blocking you.

And just breathe that in and own that feeling completely for yourself and all the other people in the same boat as you.

And breathe out relief for yourself and all the others.

 

Have a feeling of completely opening your heart and mind when you breathe in.

There’s no place for anything to get stuck.

You just open so wide as you breathe in that there’s no place for anything to get stuck.

And then just send that same openness outward.

Send it out to them.

 

 

Say this person’s name.

Visualize their face if that helps to make it more real and bring up the feelings more strongly.

 

When you hear this gong then slowly move back tośamatha vipassana,

 

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