I began the meditation by reviewing the disadvantages of self-cherishing. This mind which holds my own happiness and importance as supreme seems to be to my advantage. But with a little examination it quickly becomes clear that it causes problems. Whenever I see an attractive object, I want it for myself. It makes me feel uncomfortable. It makes me want to stop other people obtaining the object, and reluctant to share it. I am uneasy when I have the object for fear of losing it. And when I am away from the object, I long for it. All these moods and emotions are unpeaceful, and they lead me to commit selfish, harmful actions.
I thought about how if would be if I did not have this self-cherishing in my mind. It would be lovely and peaceful. I would not be drawn to objects just because of their appearance. I would not get upset about getting hold of them, and keeping them. I would not get envious or jealous.
I would only need to make sure I had enough resources to practice Dharma – any more is not necessary, and there is no need to become concerned by its absence. And even if I cannot obtain the resources fo practice Dharma, there is no need to worry, because all things change, and soon I will find a way to obtain them (or they will find me).
I felt that without self-cherishing in my mind, my life would be clear, calm and peaceful. I will have no problems. I imagined what this would be like, and it felt beautifully calm and clear. Life would be easy and simple – joyous and open.
I stayed with this feeling and recognised it as the result of removing my self cherishing. I brought in the idea of removing my self-cherishing, and stayed with these thoughts, all rolled up into one feeling.
How different this meditation was from the last time! My last meditation on this was full of energy and the almost violent wish to destroy self-cherishing. This time it seemed just SO simple to drop it out of my mind and enjoy a peaceful undisturbed life. By using these different approaches, may I eventually eliminate self-cherishing, for the benefit of all.