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Primary vs. Secondary Pain

Cory Muscara






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Primary vs. Secondary Pain

In this meditation, we'll explore how to be with pain in a new way that doesn't create more tension and suffering.

So let's find a comfortable posture, which

could be sitting, lying down or standing.

If it's comfortable to do

so, you can close your eyes.

And we'll start by taking

a deep breath together.

In through the nose.

And slowly out through the mouth.

Inviting the jaw to relax and soften.

Letting the shoulders be at ease.

As well as the hands and the belly.

And as the body starts to settle, let the

breath fall back into its natural rhythm.

And just spend some time focusing

your attention at your breath.

Remember this isn't an

imagining of the breath.

It's not thinking about the breath.

Instead we're feeling

it from the inside out.

Sometimes it can be helpful to

place a hand on the belly to feel

it a little more vividly, if you

have trouble feeling it otherwise.

And enjoy the peace and simplicity

of not having to do anything other

than just feel your body breathing,

the gift and the privilege of that.

So much of our tension and suffering

isn't coming from difficult experiences,

but rather the thoughts and the emotions

that we cake on top of those experiences.

In meditation, as we're doing right

now, we practice dropping beneath that

internal narrative, the judgements and

the ideas, and experience something

at its most basic simple form.

So we'll continue practicing

this with the breath as it's a

preparation for other things that

we might experience in our day.

So continue to feel the body breathing.

Particularly feeling the belly as

it inflates like a balloon on the

inhale and deflates on an exhale.

Anchoring your attention at that

very simple movement and experience.

Regardless of how the breath is

for you, if it's long, short,

shallow, deep, there's nothing

intrinsically right or wrong about it.

It just is how it is.

But practice viewing

the breath in that way.

Just with curiosity of, Oh, what is

it like to breathe in this moment?

As if you were getting to know

the breath as a long lost friend.

If ideas, thoughts, judgments arise, just

deepen the presence back to the breath.

Nothing you need to fix or make better.

Dropping beneath the judgmental mind and

into the bare experience of breathing.

Let's take one more deep breath together.

In through the nose.

And out through the mouth.

Great job.

As you go about your day today,

notice when your mind gets caught

up in secondary pain, thoughts,

emotions, judgments, all the things

we cake on top of our experience,

especially the difficult experiences.

Primary pain, the normal pains

of life that's going to be there.

But secondary pain, we

have some choice around.

And in this meditation, we're practicing

dropping beneath the secondary pain

and just into the raw experience.

Great job.

Thank you for your practice.

Until then, take care.

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