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The First Noble Truth

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Teacher: Rodney Smith
Date: 2006-01-17
Venue: Seattle Insight Meditation Center



Be aware of the range and expressions of your suffering. Use the week to focus on the gross and subtle forms of your personal pain as it occurs throughout the day. Each time you find yourself in conflict, ask yourself, “Who is responsible for this?”  Watch your tendency to blame and externalize the causes.

See if you can experience pain and conflict as two separate events. Reacting to an unpleasant painful sensation is suffering. Separate the sensation from the mental reaction. For example, if you hurt your knee or burn your finger, experience the physical pain as an unpleasant sensation. Notice how much reacting to that pain causes fear and anger. Is it possible to release the mental reaction? What happens to the intensity of the pain when you are able to let go of the reactivity?

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