How to Cultivate the Buddha’s Laughter, by Parvati Devi
Love, the force of the universe, is ever flowing, eternally present, continually effervescent, whether or not we choose to perceive it. Many of us can be like the child who plays hide and seek with his caretakers. When covering his eyes, he believes that because he cannot see his environment, no one can see him.
We laugh in delight at such innocence when we see a child doing it. We forgive his ignorance because we understand that he does not clearly see the limits of his perception. When you feel that life is happening “to you”, you are perceiving the moment through the lens of your ego.
The ego has a tendency to inflate painful feelings, such as “I am sad about a breakup”, into absolutes, such as “I will never find love”. It is as though sweeping statements along the lines of “I am a failure” or “I am unloved” actually satisfy the ego in some way. When we are triggered, we move away from the present moment. Why do we do this, when it leaves us feeling more alone, unloved and disconnected? Our ego’s drama becomes a way to hide from something in this moment that we fear is too painful to handle.
Starting with honest articulation of uncomfortable feelings helps to keep you from blowing up painful feelings into devastating absolutes. Such honesty brings with it the light of empowering clarity that fuels true personal growth and freedom.
If you are willing to rest in the love that is here right now, you will find the courage to open and meet this moment with honesty. When you notice that your ego is triggered and magnifying a situation into devastating absolutes, you may wish to ask yourself, “Is this thought true?” and “What is so threatening or uncomfortable to my ego in this moment that I would rather react to it than be present for it?”
Challenging the internal voices that keep you feeling disconnected is a powerful way to rest in the love that already is. You see that the things you thought were so solid and all-pervasive are, in fact, just a passing attachment, something you have bought into. The great news about realizing that your attachments are just things you have bought into, is that it means you can let them go. How exciting and empowering! If your ego’s voices come up and say otherwise, go back to questioning them until you feel a total yes! in letting them go. Once you completely understand that they are illusions, you will no longer feel that the limiting thoughts have value. You will find yourself automatically releasing them.
When you understand that the twists and turns of your ego are not real, you can see them as a cosmic trickster that keeps you feeling small, separate from the love that already is. Then the giggle that echoes in the Buddha’s belly grows in yours too. You know that these thoughts are not real and they only bring you suffering. You can witness your ego at play. You can watch it do its desiring, inflated dance, without attachment, reaction, narration, or judgement. You feel loved. You know you are love. You are the love that already is.
Parvati Devi is an award-winning musician (“I Am Light”, “Electro Yog”, “Yoga In The Nightclub”), yogini (YEM: Yoga as Energy Medicine), author (“The Grace Mindset”, “Aonani of Avalon”, “The Three Supreme Secrets for Lasting Happiness”) and founder of the not-for-profit Parvati.org. All her work is dedicated to protecting all life on Earth by establishing the Marine Arctic Peace Sanctuary (MAPS). More info: parvati.tv and parvati.org.