If you are here with us today, you are practicing to move from a life of struggle to a life of peace. In Buddhism, we would say, “moving from self to no-self. To have a sense of self, can simply mean to be self-focused. In other words, we feel a separation or distinction between our outside world and our inside one. This causes confusion in our lives because we sometimes feel this outside world opposing us. It is very hard to drop fear and attachment in this situation.

This is one reason that we practice meditation. To truly know the experience of detachment, it must happen within ourselves first, When we accomplish this internally, then we can be healthy and use this practice in our daily lives.

No-self doesn’t mean disappearing off the face of the earth, or not existing. It means that you are not self-centered or other-centered (codependent) – but just simply, centered. This is the key to understanding.

Yet, the idea of “letting go” brings up anxiety, fear and a strong urge to justify the attachment. (There is an old story about a young boy who climbed too high into a tree and was stuck holding on to a weak tree branch. In his fear, he would not release the branch to let anyone catch him. But when his father arrived and told him to let go of the branch, he gave it all up to trust that his father would indeed catch him safely).

We trust and draw strength from the knowledge that the Buddha (who also lived on this earth) went through this same process, and proved that it works. This path can be difficult at times – you can’t pay money and get it or integrate it after a weekend seminar. It is a process in which we accomplish much, but are constantly given the opportunity to learn more. It is a wonderful way to face our fears and limitations and work through them. Then we can be free, positive and giving.

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