Abbot’s Commentary: Suffering is Not Inherent

by | Nov 4, 2023 | Buddhism for All

I tell people that the world isn’t trustworthy, that if you depend on anything external, you will find that it is unreliable and unfulfilling, and if you grasp to it, you will get hurt. I tell people that their inner world isn’t trustworthy either, that whether you depend on intelligent thoughts or powerful emotions, you will find that they are unreliable and unfulfilling, and if you grasp to them, you will get hurt. They often think I’m pessimistic, maybe even mean.  In reality, this is optimistic, because I’m telling people that when they stop grasping, they find freedom from suffering. They find a true happiness that doesn’t depend on anything.  It’s not just optimistic, it’s uplifting.

It also says something wonderful about you personally.  If suffering is not inherent, you are not inherently flawed.  You are not fundamentally broken.  Suffering is not necessary.  Suffering is not you.

Since it’s not you, you can do something about it. What is to be done about suffering?  It is to be resolved.  See this clearly, and it will change your life.  Every time suffering arises, you will feel exhilarated, because you know what to do now: resolve it!  And you’ll feel confident, because you know that it can be resolved.  You can always do that which must be done. Buddhism offers the instructions on how to do it.


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Soryu Forall

After 10 years of monastic training in Asia, Soryu founded the Monastic Academy and spent his life working to create just societies through teaching the Dharma. He has taught thousands of meditators one-on-one in intensive practice. He guides global leaders to conquer their minds. (Read Soryu's story)

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