Ups and downs

in #thoughts6 months ago (edited)

So, the other day I was listening to a talk given by Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, when he said this:

If you want to go to - in Tibet - from eastern Tibet to Lhasa, you know?... Tibet is a land of mountains, you have to go a lot of up and down, so... you have big pass, then you've got down deep, then you've got another cross, another mountain, so up and down, so up is getting close to Lhasa, down is also getting close to Lhasa, this up and down is the part of the journey, both is good.

He was referring to meditation, and how "good" experiences (ups), and "bad" experiences (downs) are both parts of the journey. One might think that the ups are when one is going in the right direction, and the downs are when one is not making much progress, however, this would not be accurate. Both with good experiences, as well as bad ones, we move forward. Both are part of the journey. Even when one seems to be stuck, as long as one persists, one keeps moving forward.

This is not obvious at all, especially when one is on the downhills. It is easy then to get carried away by frustration, hopelessness and meaninglessness. When I first heard the talk a few weeks ago, I actually believed not only that I was not making any progress with my meditation, but I also believed that I was getting worse. Therefore, when I heard his words, the metaphor came to me as a present.

Actually, we should not aim for the ups, as if they were the objective. The goal, in fact, is to move forward, and we do that with the downhills as well. No matter how far one goes down, that is also to advance. Both ups and downs move us forward.

The only way not to move forward is not to try. It's a matter of not giving up. If you've practiced something for long enough, you've probably had a similar experience. It's like in school, I remember one time in school, they lowered my grades because I missed a lot of classes. Just for showing up, just for going there, they gave points.

But, of course, I'm not talking only about meditation here. I was pondering to myself how everything resembles the path he describes. Whatever you do there will be ups and downs along the way. But this is fine, downhills are also a natural part of the path, and also, going up is not exclusively the same as moving forward.

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@vieira, You have said the truth; we should make continuous efforts to move forward. There will be ups and downs. We get experience from that. And one has to learn from it and move forward. Very good. Thank you.

So is. And thanks to you for stopping by.