Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche’s New Year Message. So wise, so concise, so on point.
New Year’s Message 2019
Happy New Year! I will pray that the new year brings you happiness, health, and also that you will develop your spiritual journey, your awareness, compassion, and wisdom.
This is a new year and, of course, we all know that; our life is changing, the environment is changing, the whole world is changing. It is important that we accept that things are changing. We need to really let go of, what I call our “fixed mind:” the mind that creates a prison or a jail for ourselves, layer after layer, with preconceptions and a lot of judgment and lots of ideas. We need to accept these changes. This new year is a big change, is it not? If you can be with what changes, accept that which changes, that will really bring, or it has for me, a new perspective on life that is fresh and really sees things clearly. I become clear about myself, about my life, and in meditation, it really helps me to see my own mind, the natural qualities of my own mind.
You can see things around you, also, being fresh and alive. In a way, we all have this wonderful life, right now. It is amazing! and it is important to appreciate that you are alive, that you are breathing. At the same time, there is a lot of great qualities within us — within me, within you, and in this world. Appreciate that and be with it.
At the same time, practice letting go. Letting go is not giving up. Let go of your fixed mind. After letting go of your fixed mind, you will discover the fresh reality of yourself and the world. That only comes through accepting impermanence, changes.
With this day comes a big change for you and for all of us. It is New Year’s, right? I hope this new year will open new eyes, a new mind, and a new heart for you that is fresh, clear, joyful, and peaceful.
Is it 31 Dec already? I didn’t think I have digested everything that 2018 brought me as yet and time is moving on.
The end of 2018 brought me quite a bit at the last bit——–Lots of everything in life that would have you sit up and stand on your toes. Qinzhi’s seizure was shocking and a big awakening for me. Pretty much like a tsunami that rocked my world. The ishinomaki trip sort of made sense now.
Its a big lesson I received and I believe——-my and my family’s collective doing that brought this to fruition. All of us had a part to play to ring this in this direction. But I believe this is what I and my family need to work on collectively so we can all go to the next level. Together and in unison.
We were not united enough. Our thoughts were not together as a family. The binding was not there.
I looked back at my Goodbye 2017 post, I recounted what I tried my hands on and what I wanted to do in 2018. I said this—-
“In the new 2018 that has just birthed, I would like to:
spend more time with my family, my kids, my husband
spend more time with myself
be more healthy
heal my keloids
do less work
do more holidays with my precious ones!
do 5 min of practice a day
learn to be still , to be quiet
get more creative, intuitive,
be more in touch with myself
do videos that make a difference, write or say things that would inspire, hence express my light and that of others, and be the magic to people around me.
Maybe half of those came true. Was 2018 kind to me? Actually very much so.
I travelled and visited many places, had the privilege to interview and got in touch with many wonderful people. I saw their magic, captured their magic and got them out on videos for the world. It was magical and magic time and again I witnessed and experienced. Thru out it all, I remained true and did not lose myself. I maintained to be me.
I spent great effort at work and invested heavily in getting to know myself better. I imbued my learning and development into my work and created works that had insight and meaning.
But if I could do anything better, I should have put in more for my family. Both quantity and quality wise. I came home to cook for my family and had dinner with them every night. I read storybooks and we chatted at bedtime.
To capture 2018’s magic and lessons would be rounding these points below.
The meaning of life and its purpose. If we are aligned to our life purpose, things flow. For me, the meaning and purpose of life, is to be true and to say it as it is. Like a mirror, nothing more and not less.
Life is transient and impermanent.
What is to listen? How do you listen to another’s soul?
What is to love? What is love if it causes hurt? And if you do not know about loving yourself—-how do you love another?
To be gentle with yourself. Only then can you be gentle to others.
All change with substance comes from within.
What is to trust the process or the divine? How do you apply this understanding to the process?
What is to let go?
What is to offer your presence? And especially, what does it mean to offer your presence to your loved ones?
What is putting others before you?
What is giving when you are not giving to yourself ?
Some things in life cannot be undone.
Old practices, methods, pathways, attitudes, modes have been exhausted and new ones are in need.
No matter what, be grounded be humble be gentle. Our opinions are not the most important.
Learn from children, they are our teachers.
Transform. Transform, TRANSFORM. Use every opportunity to practice this.
Awareness is of utmost importance. Continue to work on Mindfulness.
Imprints. There are too many imprints in each and everyone of us. We live in our reality projected from these lived past that we do not have enough awareness about and reacts from these past circumstances.
Healing and breaking through to stop repeating cycles.
In spite of it all, I am immensely thankful and in awe of 2018 and its teachings. If I ever veered off, all of the teachings above helped set priorities in place, humbling you in the process of it all and calling out a deepest reverence for life and to honour and believe its processes.
And with this, with the brand new 2019, I sincerely ask for courage, patience, wisdom, creativity and a solid good heart of gold filled with a lot of love, that will be with me every moment of the way, so as to support me in arriving at novel and never before perspectives, create new attitudes and habits, creative modes and a new order or new systems that will provide a safe nurturing loving space for everyone to co-create and experience freedom———-so as to express their light. And in there, realise the magic they are.
May we be always always protected, healed, helped and richly blessed and guided by our light, by our guardian angels and the divine.
Thank you for all you have brought me 2018. As I read my previous posts, I get inspirations all over again—- such as:
-Every step is a step forwards,
-We have the power to change the story we tell ourselves by acknowledging that in the past, we did our best, and we exhibited many positive qualities, and had many fine moments on our path to the present moment. We can also recognize that we have learned from our experiences, and that this will help us with our current choices. When we do this kind of work on how we view our past self, we make it possible for the future to be based on a positive self-assessment. This inner shift may allow us to get out of the cycle we’ve been in that’s been keeping us stuck.
-calm mind: The dalai lama says that inner peace n calm is the key to a healthy body. He drew a parallel between calmness immunity. If u r calm n had this inner peace, nothing could rock u however big or small.
– life is more of an improvisation than it is like a play whose lines have already been written, whose end is already known. Like an improviser, we have choices to make and the more we embrace the illusionary quality of the performance, the lighter we can be on the planet, on others, and on ourselves.
-When you go with the ride, accepting what you cannot control, freedom and joy will inevitably arise. We can also cultivate this awareness in ourselves gently, by simply making surrender a daily practice. At the end of our meditation, we might bow, saying, “I surrender to this life.” We can give in to our fear and anxiety, or we can surrender to this great mystery with courage.
–It is our response to those circumstances that will dictate the nature of our experiences. At the heart of every transformation, no matter how chaotic, there is substance. When we no longer resist change and instead regard it as an opportunity to grow, we find that we are far from helpless in the face of it. Our role as masters of our own destinies is cemented when we choose to make change work in our favor. Yet before we can truly internalize this power, we must accept that we cannot hide from the changes taking place all around us. To make change work for you, look constructively at your situation and ask yourself how you can benefit from the transformation that has taken place. As threatening as change can seem, it is often a sign that a new era of your life has begun. If you reevaluate your plans and goals in the days or weeks following a major change, you will discover that you can adapt your ambition to the circumstances before you and even capitalize on these changes. Optimism, enthusiasm, and flexibility will aid you greatly
As we move towards a new beginning, I give thanks for the opportunity to welcome this new dawn and the times it will bring me.
I have no doubt that this in itself is already a blessing. We have to do our best to make good this opportunity. Breathe well, eat well, keep well, feel well be well. And use every opportunity to practise the dharma and its teachings.
I thank all my guardian angels who have helped me reach here, including my teacher who has always listened and supported with kind advice.
May all sentient beings be well and happy. May all sentient beings have happiness and its causes. May all sentient beings be free from suffering and its causes. May all sentient beings never be separated from sorrow less bliss. May all sentient beings abide in equanimity, be free from anger, hatred and share compassion for all other beings.
May the new beginning inspire us with lots of light and love. Let there be creativity, open mindedness, magnanimity, flexibility, optimism, may we all have boundless courage to pursue what we believe in, may there be favourable conditions to support our healing and development. May we all experience pure joy, wonder, freedom, happiness, wherever you are. May 2019 be magic.
我看到我写，“Dear Qinzhi，Do not forget how special u r. When u were as young as 26 mths n attended kindermusik , u were always non conforming like other children. You would not sit with mummy or daddy whilst other children did. You always had a mind of your mind. Bravely go for what you want. What do you want? Remember not to give those up easily, because you r so so special.”
May the divine and my guardian angels, support me greatly and guide me each and every step of the way. May we all receive healing and love, May the creative spark be always with me to intuitively create new possibilities and a new tender loving energy. For myself, my kids, my family and the world.
And one more thing———–Be happy! Because all this, life, is so precious.
,it is part of u. u think abt your body naturally and u grow into it.
on her teacher joseph pilates, she says he has this doggedness, that is awe inspiring. from 1926 to 1967, he repeated the same thing, day after day. he has this resolve to make the whole world healthier, he wanted to let the world know about pilates. he had a singular focus, and he didnt care about anything else.
i havent known any man who was like that in my life.
in a sentence, pilates is a way of relating to the body that embraces the whole body at once and encourages strengthening of flexibility, addressing symmetry.in the right structure, there will not be problems and aches in the body. and pilates adds alignment more than any other excercise. in every excercise, whole body is involved, toes knows, whole body knows, head knows, everything is v integrated.
people use too little of the body. you need to open up the range in your body, there should be a lifelong commitment to the health of your body.
there is so much more endurance and flexibility in my body now.
deepest goal in my psyche is to journey to the bottom of my own consciousness.that place is the most important place.
i was someone who didnt know how to sit down, i was totally active, so i learned to sit down and to be quiet.
to be passive is to be female. to be active is to b male.
and the truth is, we have a male consciousness in us females, that is why we are so much more hyperactive than males. there’ll be a big fight because if you do not let that, than u diminish the female side. its hard to tame that.
so when u learn to do nothing, you are more yourself.
the body led me into the depth of my journey, body was the teacher, everything becomes lighter in nature.
its not true that with age, everything shrinks. when i was 75, the spine was taking over most of the work, and as i watched it go far out, i realise, that’s the cat! i released the spine.we have that capacity! we can go very long if we get out of the head and let the body show us. that means a lot of life!
it is a life adventure to work with the body, all parts of it, its the way to grow yourself and grow instinctively. theres so much value in it. and go as deep as can u can go,
its not about the ego running a show, go further by inviting the body to open.
on the breath:
best breath is the yawn, its whole , superior and natural.
in my 30s, i spend 3hrs infront of a mirror and i couldnt yawn, later on, i realised that its the release in the body that produces the yawn. then i started to learn to breathe. and never stop it. dont cover it, in fact u need to advertise it. we are not doing enough!
it unlocks the tension in the body.
half of my life, i held my breath.
sometimes u think you conk out and its unfair,. so i always look for the next something, dont box yourself in.
but the next thing to happen is to die.
and it will be the new thing for each of us. that made peace with me.
steve jobs was the one who dies totally conscious. and the only 2 words he said as he approched death was,
and i thought, thats not bad, thats not bad at all.
philosophy of life
1)ground your whole body. when u r tired, u tend to sink and u dont feel well.then get your body in a lift.
lighten up by pulling yourself up, lift, and feel light to be right
you want to be in your core, because thats the engine that will keep you light.
2)flex your little toes, focus, try.
3)Sit on the edge of the chair
4)horse neighs on the inhale but we speak on the exhale, if you learn to neigh like the horse,
its so deep that it lifts you up and brings you up, all through the trunk. and all done on air.
5)talk to the body to work with it, the conscious is part of it, u cant be here to do without it, there has to be gratitude to the body, in terms of mindset and attitude, you learn how to make your body better.
start by moving anywhere you like, when somewhere hurts, you got a problem, explore what makes it not hurt.
6)cat poses in bed to relax spine
7)lying in bed, pull kness to chest
8)look right n left to release stiffness in head
10)get your body to stretch
stretches are wonderful, do all sorts of things to open up your body and the sides
climb up the wall with your fingers, go up on your toes,
why not use them?
dont make anything happen, dont try to make it happen. allow it to happen.
There’s something in the body, its looking within yourself to find yourself when you work with your consciousness. And after 56 years of having the mind with the body, i m still constantly checking myself.
keep developing yourself in what you choose to do, you will be a gift to the world .its not how much money you make,
Teacher specially made time for me even if it were a last minute call to him. And I understood why. I cannot say how miraculous it was but he told me it was because he had been through my path.
His daughter suffered from epilepsy at 4, he quit his job and went on to discover for himself all sorts of healing methods he could apply for his precious one. He says, “My daughter is my teacher and the reason why I m here today. In this healing practice, because as I worked on her, i discovered and began to work this on more people. She had a big attack at age 4, then alls good for one year. Then another one one year later, then it became more frequent. But the medication had a lot of side effects so i took a bolder way, she did not use medications, but by age 8 she was doing well and now she’s recovered.”
I have seen him for 55 sessions, is that the reason why I have been seeing him.
Like a bigger hand that has a plan and is guiding me to it? Or, was I the planner——-How did everything get its place? How did i come to this position, or how did my family members and love ones find theirs in the now?
We approach not knowing.
I told teacher about Qinzhi’s seizure, and the big one she had on 27th December when we were holidaying. She woke up really angry and having mood swings. I handed her ningxia red and got her to drink, and she got really sore and let out, “why every morning like that?”
We asked her about this. Like what? we probed. Her brother was clearer, “Mommy, you always ask us what we want, but in the end, you gave us what you want.” But Qinzhi chose to keep quiet. She didn’t say or couldn’t say. She was struggling emotionally and she could not handle and the big seizure happened. I find her at the toilet dazed and not responding. We carried her to the bed. She vomitted out all the things she drank and remained to have impaired awareness not responding to us. Her dad cried and she could still wipe a tear off his face. But still remains in her world. I did not find this right and he carried her down and we drove sent her to the nearest hospital 20 min away. In the car, we kept rubbing her toes and talking to her, i sprayed mist on her and she responded, her hair fell and she responded. But she just did not say.
Did not say anything. Pinched her and got her round, she said ouch and gradually came to. But was afraid knowing we are sending her to hospital.
I told teacher about all this.
I told teacher Qinzhi was what Daddy and myself had after a 10 year relationship , after mom, uncle, his mom, passed away all in a very dramatic way. Through those years, we were together learning to patch our life back using what little mindfulness we had, we fumbled and made our way—on hindsight, really with blessings from above. Then we applied and got our house, and planned for marriage, that was when we discovered we had Qinzhi, after a korea trip —-some 5 months before before the day we were suppose to get married.
With a marriage certificate.
I was fixated on steps. I was educated to. You had to do this before you do that. You had to follow this and definitely DO something before you could arrive at that.
You had to get a marriage certificate before you are legally married and have a baby.
It was societal. If you did not follow, you were sort of the lesser crowd. AT that time. Also my tribe was big, my extended family was a big one and everyone was about getting things right. If not it was frowned upon and discussed on the side. If not, you risk the criticism and disfavour of grandmother.
It was like that.
And I had been a good student obeying all the rules all the while.
Only this time.
Yet Qinzhi is letting me discover the wonder of joy and magic in life. Of a blossoming. Of all the little and big things in life. Qinzhi led me on to wonders after wonders, morphing me into completeness along the way.
Now i look back, it was after giving birth to Qinzhi, that i started my healing journey. I blossomed I morphed.
But i was not able to cross that point when i conceived, not knowing what to do, who to turn to, i didnt knew how to take this news, Mom was already not here then. It was my nanny who knew first and started cooking for me.
Teacher listened and said, “So now can you already accept this?”
I honestly still feel that I have not resolved this, logically it looks really silly how these norms and watertight rules should override the precious magic of life. Silly, laughable, ignorance.
But truly i was under the spell of this.
And now I m writing, perhaps this was my way of rejecting or refusing and rebutting of those “norms” I was subconsciously not agreeable to. I wanted to challenge those. So I went against the tide having Qinzhi.
Teacher says, “Qinzhi can feel all this. Being not welcomed enough. For beings who feel this way, they become closed up in their own system and their own world. Like a defence mechanism.”
I asked what I can do about this.
Strangely I been having this feeling about reading my blog to her. When I discovered my pregnancy.
Teacher suggested this method called metamorphosis. Its putting your hands into a butterfly shape, recounting the time i was pregnant and moving and working with the pulsations at the points the fingers connected. Working on this for 10 days, 1 day represents one month.
Very nicely, he says that I can let him know when i start so he can support me.
I told him, Qinzhi has been a guiding teacher in my life. She kickstarted me to adulthood and my learning journey as a person. When I had panic attacks, and had to bring her to the music lessons, it was her hand that held on to mine to give me energy. But now, her hands are cold and limp. Her hands were always warm and full of energy. But in return for giving, we scolded her badly.
We gave her what she didnt want. We gave her what we want. We did not listen to her. We did not hear. We did not take heed and take care of her. We could not appreciate her heart and the voice there. We did not respond to her. Her pleas or her refusals to follow us. She just continued to take that. We did not see her at all. And now in her seizures she doesn’t listen or respond to us.
And I know realise this LACK OF RESPONSE IS HER LOUDEST RESPONSE.
Teacher explained Qinzhi’s epilepsy to me, “because she said and you did not take heed, you did not hear. So Qinzhi has chosen this path to make you listen.”
“She has chosen this pathway to subject herself to this to make you sit up and listen. You can not ignore this or subject her to hurt anymore. Help her find her light and become the light and wonder she wants. Not what you want.”
Teacher also cautioned us on a few things. That when the seizure happened, adults are in shock too.
“And so we need to take cake of this as well. When adults are worried about the next attack—-you portray and create an energy field and more often then not, it leads to the subsequent attacks.”
“We have to be very mindful about this and there are things we can do.”
“Turning eyeballs. Rightwards 3 times and leftwards many times. Rightwards you times, imagine yourself in a time machine, and pushing a button gets you back in time to the time the seizure happens. When you are there, the eyeballs go leftwards. To release the energy of the incident.
Be creative about this. You can change things by changing or breaking the energy pattern in the fifth dimension. Now that you are in a safe position and turning your eyeballs leftwards, you can see clearly the situation then. How would you react? Visualise and use your imagination. Would you react the same way? Or would you give Qinzhi a gentle hug? You will see her eyes shine. Or if your husband and son is there, all of you can hug her. Doing this is creating a new pattern a new energy and this will impact the energy now and here.”
There is a lot of comfort you find in —-being able to address something which has passed. Like the least and at the same time the most you can do.
Teacher also taught about the helpfulness on massaging the spine to remove blockages in there which could affect clarity and our nervous system.
Teacher also cautioned us that we should not quarrel in front of kids because they do not know how to handle and process. “Like Qinzhi says, when she’s going to have seizure she feels like she cannot handle it. Kids cannot handle. So you and and your husband has to have a contract, how do you handle or manage differences? You have to sort that out. But NO—not infront of kids.”
“For every child, he or she looks for a nurturing mother and a protective father. When you had panic attacks, you had to be away, Qinzhi has to find protection in her father too to establish close relationships with you, and subsequently this will affect her as she starts to establish her relationship with the world.”
He also encourages us to look deep within —-in fact the first step would be exploring and putting in place and moulding our relationship as husband and wife, to achieve to sense of deeper bonding and understanding, a better cohesion of our relationship and changing things from within before we can address and make changes to our relationship with Qinzhi.
I told Teacher that I was trying to digest this along the way.
That day in Tasmania, it was winter solstice. That day i saw a FB post on one of my friend’s page and it read—-Read that Winter Solstice is a reminder to let everything go and begin again. Not just on 22 Dec but on any given day, any given moment. Winter Solstice is both the darkest day and the return of light. It is when things are darkest that light is about to return. It is the deepest part of night that the new day begins.
How poetic how right. No wonder the old folks always say, winter solstice is like the new year and we have the tradition of eating tangyuan or circle shaped dumplings on Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year.
Everyday in Tasmania, we drove past majestic mountains and land masses which opened up to the sun. That winter solstice day in Tasmania, as the kids slept in the car, I looked at the sheer vastness, the mountains the trees the openness and the tears just flow.
Life is so big.
The understanding is a bit different now. Its not that of having to succumb but that of reverence, respect and a humbling that comes with this new understanding of life that sent these tears of appreciation. It’s realisation and perception, a very powerful one. Seeing this allows you to put alot of things in pespective and to trust the process. Its not letting go but trusting the work and the underlying hand. And that’s when we can rest with the flow, ride with it and COCREATE.
I also thought about transformation. And using this as an opportunity to change and alter deep seated arrangements and practices, melting away things thoughts attitudes feelings emotions ways of life that do not work anymore.
Seeing this is amazing, its the practice that Mingyur Rinpoche, Tsoknyi Rinpoche has put in place these few years.
I also see the transient nature of life. In our last session, I remember telling Teacher that we can prepare for certain things. But apparently, not at much as we would like to.
I have never felt life so precious in a long while. Or appreciate its fleeting nature so greatly. The last was probably mom’s, uncle’s, auntie’s death as it loomed.
We forgot about appreciating the idea of impermanence in life, even if it was so true so real.
And I shared with Teacher that I also see this as a blossom or a ripening of sorts. That when conditions are present, or ripe, a fruit and flower blossoms. And learning to embrace this and letting down our preconceived notions about what should or should not why this and why not.
More importantly, the change has to come from within. He says, “For Qinzhi who is closed up, how do you breakthrough that? You have to address the close systems within you, you have to open up and change within yourself your old ways, so that she can see this happening to you to inspire her change and transformation.”
Teacher also shared about sharing important information with kids when they are most relaxed. That is when you are about to drift into sleep and the subconscious mind comes up to receive information. Understanding this can let us better use this precious time to transmit and send information to our kids.
“Look at this positively, and you can use this opportunity to transform.”
I asked Teacher how do i say goodbye to 2018?
He thought for a while, “by letting everything go back to Mother Earth, this grounding sense of energy, and renewing with her in her presence. When you let go, there is renewing of energy.”
And welcoming the new 2019?
“Welcoming Qinzhi back into your life and welcoming 2019 can be in tandem. If I were you, I will give her a big hug and say to her, how how how precious she is to you and the family.”
I told Teacher, if this is the time I should stop my work and come back to my family, it seemed to be the thing to do, to make myself feel better. But i also thought i want to put up a fight for this, to continue my work but adjust my time so that i show up for my kids at home when they are back from school. Teacher ‘s advice is, “Your work is your life, its how you concrete and gets inspired by life and inspire. I certainly do not see that quitting is the appropriate thing to do. But SURELY, showing up and listening to your kids and seeing who they are and changing within you to break down old systems and modes.”
I cannot say how powerful this teaching —-this teaching of life is. The work i have done in my professional field has been preparing for me to address my own. When i offer myself to the interview, to the newsmaker, to the chefs, i listen intently and with all of my heart. And I find out their light and put it in videos.
But I haven’t really offered my presence to my Qinzhi, the one who has taught me so much and kickstarted my healing journey to understanding life.
How can my works be sincere if I do not show up for Qinzhi and listen to her being.
And all these healing sessions, these 55 sessions of them, is truly powerful because I unlocked so much and found so many messages that gave me deep insightful understanding of how life works.
Most of all, teacher taught me about listening and offering his presence to me. Or to my soul development. And I think this is truly truly valuable truly precious. He taught by way of example. And I m very inspired to take the cue and do this for my Qinzhi.
To myself and my life, to truly listen to voices and let it shine.
皓皓看到mommy教姐姐angles，似乎也学会一点。皓皓就是有这点小聪明，而且懂得聆听。其实聆听是非常重要的本领。是人生当中很需要的。懂得聆听自己，才能聆听他人。聆听生命。一次皓皓看见Mommy教沁芝数学，皓皓提醒：“mommy it may be easy to u but it’s not easy for others！” 比如皓皓看mommy教姐姐，教到自己好气，问皓皓——is mommy upset? 皓皓点点头。问他为什么？他说：“because you are worried about my face and 姐姐 ‘s study。” 皓皓都看在眼里，听进去了。
看着这些想起考试的时候如何和沁芝做功课，很懊恼、悔恨。沁芝考试的时候，没有按照约定做温习，晚上下班回来，mommy生气说：“沁芝why do you do this to me?” 带皓皓去看中医，结果也在那里教沁芝做补充。就是在公公的车上，mommy也竭斯底里。
沁芝会这样想吗？what did i do to mommy?i only loved her. Yongjuan阿姨说：“Just my personal opinion, Could be too much of suppression , or too much of worries n thinking , or running away from certain thing in life n manifest in such way “ mind going blank “”
他说：“I m v sad but I know she’s going to say me last”
他说：“I will protect you , daddy will also protect you”
The holiday season is a time for joy, generosity, and connecting with family and friends. However, the holidays aren’t always so merry. Life unfolds in ways we don’t expect, or don’t want, and we might experience stress, sadness, or any range of difficult emotions.
This needn’t be cause for alarm. As practitioners, difficult situations can be our greatest opportunity for practice. By cultivating appreciation and gratitude, difficult situations can become the means by which we recognize the natural openness and compassion that exist within us.