She was born 1936 in New York. Pema Chödrön is well known as a buddhistic nun and writer. She was the first American who became a leader of a tibetan-buddhistic monastery in Canada.
Pema Chödrön gives courses and retreats around the world. She always tries to show the buddhistic teaching based on everyday situations. She is the author of many well known books and the founder of the Pema Chodron foundation.
One tip of her is for example to integrate mindfulness in your everyday life. You wake up – take three conscious breaths, you go to the subway – take three conscious breaths, you cook in the kitchen – take three conscious breaths. You can step out of your mind cinema and step into the reality with three conscious breaths.
Another simple tip from her is about meditating. It may happen often that your mind wanders and it’s difficult to relax and to be aware of yourself and the environment. In this moments just say to yourself ”Stay!”.
”Aching knees and throbbing back? Stay! What’s for lunch? Stay! What am I doing here? Stay! I can’t stand this another minute! Stay!” (Pema Chödrön)
She says that meditation requires patience and maitri. Maitri means unconditional friendliness and compassion to ourselves.
An important teaching from her ist that everything in the universe is moving towards chaos. There won’t come a time where everything is normal. You have to be aware that everything is transforming every minute. That’s not a depressing message because it can be liberating to know:
“We think that the point is to pass the test or overcome the problem, but the truth is that things don’t really get solved. They come together and they fall apart. Then they come together again and fall apart again. It’s just like that. The healing comes from letting there be room for all of this to happen: room for grief, for relief, for misery, for joy. ”
”To be fully alive, fully human, and completely awake is to be continually thrown out of the nest. To live fully is to be always in no-man’s-land, to experience each moment as completely new and fresh. To live is to be willing to die over and over again.
“Each moment is an opportunity to make a fresh start.”
Here are some more of my favourite quotes of her:
”Nothing ever goes away until it has thaught us what we need to know.”
“The most difficult times for many of us are the ones we give ourselves.”
”You are the sky. Everything else – it’s just the weather.”
“… the life span of any particular emotion is only one and a half minutes. After that we have to revive the emotion and get it going again.”
”We’re here to get to know and study ourselves. The path, the way to do that, our main vehicle, is going to be meditation, and some sense of general wakefulness.”
”It may be hard to remember at first, but once you start doing it, pausing becomes something that nurtures you”
“There’s a common misunderstanding among all the human beings who have ever been born on the earth that the best way to live is to try to avoid pain and just try to get comfortable.”
“Live your life as an experiment.”
More parts of this series:
Part 1: Thich Nhat Han
Part 2: Tenzin Gyatso
Part 3: Sakyong Mipham
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