Funeral Rites, and Rights
As I approached the church, there was love and peace was flowing from heart, along with connection and good thoughts of my friend. Very quickly however, thoughts like “Maybe I should not be smiling so much here,” arose, and I began to contain it, and began to slip-out of the Now. Old mind began to arise as the casket was wheeled in. It was definitely a familiar feeling dredged-up from past sufferings at funerals.
Yet the watching consciousness knew this was an old habit, and began to bring me back into the present, until I saw her son, and the old mind, which had been given some space to exist said “He must have had a hard time at his father’s funeral.” Instantly my throat constricted and tears began to well. I have not felt pain or suffering for myself arise since learning to seek joy, however I just learned it can try to slip in under the guise of compassion. Immediately, I did the practice and asked myself what I wanted, “To know his son was peaceful,” and I began to feel how his son being peaceful feels.
Compassion is not feeling other people’s pain, even if we could. It is the wish for others to feel good, and feeling that wish does not mean suffering. After all, I did not know his state, and we cannot feel stressed or peaceful for anyone else. We are feeling our feeling. We are feeling our suffering, or feeling our peace. Looking at the pain and not becoming it, and seeking a better feeling Now, the light of Now burned out the funeral-suffering habit of the past, and peace returned.
It returned me to a place where I can offer love and peace to his son, and his mother. For the first time ever, I walked-out behind the procession without crying, and with a deep and pleasant sense of loving compassion for and unity with all.