Thread: Five ways of getting rid of resentment

  1. #1
    Technical Administrator woodscooter's Avatar
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    Five ways of getting rid of resentment

    The Aghatavinaya Sutta: Subduing Hatred


    https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipi....161.nymo.html


    https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipi....161.than.html



    The Buddha gave five techniques to deal with resentment, or annoyance, or hatred, depending on how the word is translated. I think that this sutta is attributed to Sariputta, giving a sermon on the teaching of the Buddha.


    In a close community such as a monks live in, it’s certain that small irritations can easily grow into more serious problems. In the Western world, we still have the same difficulty in accepting everybody’s different ways.


    The Buddha recommended five alternatives to change ones own attitude. I don’t know if they were supposed to be tried one at a time, or all together. Perhaps it doesn’t much matter, it’s the outcome that’s really important.


    The first thing is to practice loving-kindness (metta) towards the source of irritation. I can say from my personal experience that it works, even if you don’t believe it will. Not as an instant fix, it needs to be maintained for a while.


    The next advice is to cultivate compassion towards the source of annoyance. It seems to me that if you can develop compassion towards another person, resentment cannot exist at the same time.


    Then to focus on equanimity. That would be development of a peaceful mind, undisturbed by what the other person is saying or doing.


    The fourth technique is a little different. If someone is irritating you, you are constantly thinking about being irritated. The solution here is to develop a lack of awareness of the other person, and to give them no attention. Perhaps that is a little easier said than done, but it’s all to do with being in command of one’s own thought processes.


    Fifthly, think about that person’s kamma. That person is solely responsible for his actions and whatever he does, good or bad, he will inherit that. In other words, that person is not your responsibility, there’s no reason to be resentful.


    This seems like such good advice from the Buddha, and I feel that it is every bit as applicable in today’s world as it was all that time ago. Many of the Buddha’s teachings combine wisdom with simplicity in this way.


    Any comments?

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    Global Moderator Esho's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by woodscooter View Post
    Then to focus on equanimity. That would be development of a peaceful mind, undisturbed by what the other person is saying or doing.
    The development of a peaceful mind is central to subdue Hatred. If you are at ease in the presence of a difficult person or situation there is enough room to develop a compassionate disposition with a warm heart toward him, her or them; that is, loving kindness. The problem I see is that the development of such kind of mental state takes some time which for most practitioners is difficult to undertake. Many wants results immediately and because such mind is developed just through meditation I think this will not be the most popular one, but indeed it is the most powerful.

    Last edited by Esho; 19 May 21 at 10:23.

  3. #3
    Technical Administrator woodscooter's Avatar
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    Thank you Esho. It does take time, certainly.

    I think you could start with any of the five, and switch about between them until something works. The best technique will be different, depending on the difficult person and depending on one's self too.

    But it's true that a peaceful mind is a powerful tool.

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