Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Developing Balanced Sensitivity – Practical Buddhist Exercises for Daily Life by Alexander Berzin

Achieving emotional balance, for example, or maintaining healthy relationships is never easy. We make these challenges even more difficult than is necessary, however, for a variety of reasons. Among them are lacking sensitivity in certain situations and overreacting in others. Although Buddha taught many methods for over-coming hardships in life, traditional Indian and Tibetan Buddhist texts do not explicitly address the topic of sensitivity. This is because the Sanskrit and Tibetan languages lack equivalent terms for insensitivity and hypersensitivity. This does not mean that people from these cultures do not suffer from these two problems: they merely do not organize the various manifestations of them under two general terms. In adapting Buddha’s methods for self-improvement to the modern Western context, however, it is necessary to address these issues as formulated in a Western idiom.

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