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Satipatthana Sutta, Third Foundation: Division Through Worry

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Teacher: Rodney Smith
Date: 2011-05-24
Venue: Seattle Insight Meditation Center



Worry attempts to protect us from every contingency. It becomes a pattern and view of life where I am the guardian and protector of my security. Worry is actually a process of  self-affirmation because we keep affirming our power over what life brings forth. If I let down my guard, life would be chaotic and out of control, and therefore I need to worry to have everything turn out as I wish.  Worry and planning elevates us to the status of a god while we are actually being controlled by fear.


Worry is restless uncertainty about a future that cannot be known. We think that if we just put enough psychic energy into the future, the future will somehow move in alignment with our desire. Does the future need your involvement? Test this speculation and surrendering your worry by saying, “ Let this be as it will.” It may or may not turn out as you wish. Either way, you can work with the results. One understanding that separates a spiritual life from a worldly life is the faith that life works toward its own advantage, not necessarily our personal benefit.


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