I’ve been slipping in and out of depression recently. And my Critical Voice has worked overtime at spewing out negativity in my mind about other people and about me. I could not shut it up. Awful!
I’ve also been spending far less time doing EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) Tapping recently. Often one round only before going to sleep and the same upon waking in the morning. Yet last Saturday morning, after I did a good long session I had a great day. Time to make some changes!
I have a whole bunch of tapping meditations I’ve purchased from The Tapping Solution. So four days ago I tapped for 14 minutes at night about my Critical Voice, and the same the following morning. A bit later when I did my morning Buddhist prayers and chanted for a half-hour about transforming myself, I saw the suffering I’ve been undergoing in a totally different and infinitely more positive light.
I saw that the pain and existential dilemma of the depressive bouts I’ve had… serve a purpose. They are my karmic retribution. They enable me to pay off my karmic debt. Truly, nothing is wasted when one chants Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!
That half-hour of chanting flew by. I was in the zone. Towards the end, I thought about three of my colleagues in a certain department at work, and how hard they work, under constant pressure. Thoughts about as far away from being critical as you can get.
When I arrived at 9 to find them all present at their desks I just had to tell them of my appreciation. It naturally flowed from my lips. They were bowled over. Later in the morning I had a lovely conversation with another colleague my Critical Voice had been internally criticising. I discovered facets to his character so praiseworthy he filled me with admiration.
I watched an old 1970s documentary about the great psychiatrist and humanist Carl Jung on YouTube yesterday. Jung taught the importance of integrating the “shadow self” into one’s being. Not ignoring it or trying to annihilate it, but healing it because it too has something to offer.
This is strikingly similar to both EFT and Nichiren Buddhism.
EFT is a process of naming, declaring, the negative thoughts one has while tapping on meridian (energy) points on the body. This removes the negative charge and allows space to tap in more positive, life-affirming thoughts. It can also lead to great AHA! moments. I’m using this healing modality to detach with love from my Critical Voice and to attach my attention to my Compassionate Voice.
Nichiren Buddhism, meanwhile, teaches the inseparability of good and evil – the “oneness of good and evil.”
Good means the fundamental nature of enlightenment, or absolute freedom and happiness. Evil indicates the fundamental darkness, or life’s innate delusion, which negates or denies the potential of enlightenment and causes suffering for oneself and others. My Critical Voice, for example.
In his book, Buddhism in A New Light, Shin Yatomi ably explains:.
“This inner darkness echoes with the despair that our lives are ugly and meaningless; it drives a wedge of fear that splits the hearts of people into “us” and “them.” The Daishonin’s concept of good and evil, in this sense, may be better understood as the dynamic, innate workings of life that become manifest or dormant, rather than the external moral codes determined by cultural and social conditions.”
“A Buddha is someone who has the courage to acknowledge those two fundamental aspects of life. … Buddhas accept their innate goodness without arrogance because they know all people share the same Buddha nature. Buddhas also recognize their innate evil without despair because they know they have the strength to overcome and control their negativity. Buddhas understand the hearts of people in myriad conditions and circumstances. Buddhas are capable of guiding others to their own awakening. This is because Buddhas share the same conditions as others, yet have the strength and wisdom to control their own evil.”
How beautiful! And all the more so for being true. 🙂