Nurturing Insight

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Insight Program: Audio CD by N/A

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If you’ve had some experience with insights, you know they can’t be called up on command. The best we can do to encourage the arising of insight is to create hospitable conditions. Reflecting, meditating, journaling, attending a silent retreat and walking meditation are some activities that are frequently associated with the arising of insight. Our relationships, too, are rich sources of insight. Once an insight sprouts up, we do have a wonderful opportunity to nurture its potential to create positive change.

Insights come in many varieties. One insight might invite us to alter our behavior or adopt a more compassionate attitude, while another may encourage us to view our past from a fresh new perspective. More rare is the insight that shifts our entire take on reality, like when Krishna revealed his true identity to Arjuna in the Bhagavad Gita. Whether heart opening or mind blowing, an insight is a precious gift that springs from our own deep wisdom. How can we honor this offering? How do we nurture this seed of wisdom into a full flowering so that it serves the highest good?

Sometimes an insight is such a strong experience of knowing in every cell of our body that it doesn’t require much cultivation. This happened to me once when I was practicing walking meditation on a silent retreat. The insight—about the negative way I was occasionally communicating with my partner—was such a complete body-mind experience that tears sprang to my eyes before my brain fully understood why. My knees felt like they might buckle under the intensity of this sudden revelation of the harm I could be causing. After I returned home, I completely abandoned that hurtful behavior and it was almost effortless to do so. I have heard Phillip compare this kind of dramatic insight to the experience of picking up a pot that is too hot. Our entire being knows that we need to set it down.

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~ by desertrose on December 1, 2015.

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