The following is an excerpt from an article written for 8 Limbs Yoga Centers.
It’s been said that when the Buddha was asked what the difference was between folks on the path of waking up, and those not on the path, the Buddha first shared what everyone has in common – we all get hit by “first arrows”. That is, everyone gets hurt from time to time. This, he explained, is part of being human. The difference, he went on to say, lies in whether or not we fire a “second arrow”. Do we react by hurting others or ourselves (shaming, punishing, threatening, exerting physical violence etc.)? Or, do we treat the experience as an opportunity to continue awakening? Do we respond compassionately by tending to the hurt? Do we proceed with care and wisdom?
Here is a recorded, guided 10-minute meditation to help us proceed with care. Often referred to by its acronym, RAIN, this powerful practice can support us along on the path of awakening, serving as a tool for tending to the hurts caused by life’s arrows. (Click here for the full article that includes written meditation instructions.)