When facing difficulties our automatic response (our egoic response) is get rid of the difficulty. Ego uses defense mechanisms like repression, denial, intellectualizing, reaction formation, projection, acting out, sublimation etc, to distort reality. In contrast, Buddhist and Jungian thought teaches us to turn these difficulties into alchemical gold. They teach us that our wounds that ego is protecting with these defenses are the very pathways to our soul and our highest potential.
In this audio/video I take you through chapter four of A PATH WITH HEART: Necessary Healing by pointing out the four fundamentals of mindfulness: healing the body, healing the heart, healing the mind, and healing through emptiness. I pull from Ken McLeod, Rollo May, and Christine Caldwell to deepen the material.
I took longer than usual to complete this audio blog post because I wanted to make strong distinctions in regards to body, heart or emotions and mind. The very essence of psychological work is in this chapter. An entire book could be written (probably has but I have not read it yet) on the rencontre ado sans inscription Four Foundations of Mindfulness. They are: “awareness of the body and senses, awareness of heart and feelings, awareness of the mind and thoughts, and awareness of the principles that govern life.” Kornfield continues,
The development of awareness in these four areas is the basis for all of the Buddhist practices of insight and awakening.
And I would add it is the basis of psychological insight and awakening.
Here is the visual/audio portion for Chapter 4, Necessary Healing. I had to break it into two parts.