I want to be a loving, open person.

Then judgmental thoughts, resentments, complaints arise.

Followed by a barrage of more judgments and disappointments at myself for thinking that way.

The habit of trying to hate myself into being a better person.

And then a miracle thought came: there’s room in love for this.


Yup, there’s room in love for all the hateful thoughts, the inner whining and yelling and tantrums.

Nirmala tells the story of a spiritual master putting a portion of salt in a glass of water and asking his disciple to drink it, and then putting that same amount of salt in a lake and drinking from that:

“The pain of life is pure salt, no more, no less. The amount of pain in life remains the same, exactly the same. But the amount of bitterness we taste depends on the container we put the pain in. So when you are in pain, the only thing you can do is to enlarge your sense of things... Stop being a glass. Become a lake.”

Nirmala. Meeting the Mystery: Exploring the Aware Presence at the Heart of All Life

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