Q. Hi Tom, thank you so much for sharing your experiences through your blog. It’s very helpful. In my journey I have learned a lot from the folks you have read Ramana Maharshi, Kirshnamurti, etc. I have experienced the sense of oneness almost like a peaceful black hole, and this feeling is now always accessible to me, although the strength of it varies. This access has changed how I experience life and a lot of suffering has diminished.
However I have a pretty intense, stressful leadership job and I find that my reactions to some people that I think are not being effective in my jobs is just as intense as it used to be before I found this state. I find myself suffering in navigating these situations, but I have to address these types of problems as a natural part of my job responsibilities.
Is there some guidance you can share that might nudge me to navigate this differently? I really suffer every time I confront this situation, and I have found myself making good decisions but causing pain to both myself and the people who are impacted by this decision. I know you are busy, but anything you can nudge me on would be helpful. I want to stay in the world and be effective in whatever role I am playing at the time, but want to not cause suffering to me or others in my path.
Tom: Thank you for your kind words and sorry it has taken me some time to respond. It’s great that your suffering has reduced and that you have instant access to that state of peace whenever you need to take shelter there.
I think I understand what you mean by the situation you face at work. As you know, I also have a job and family life and am in some ways very much in the world.
With these kinds of issues, there is no one fixed solution that works for everyone. I can give you some suggestions, but it is for you to experiment and find what works for you.
My recommendation is to start the day with a sense of gratitude, perhaps even a formal ‘giving thanks’ meditation session/puja in the morning to start the day.
Thereafter try to love everything that happens to you. This sadhana is described here in more detail: Start the day with love, fill the day with love, end the day with love
Thanks again for writing to me, best wishes and let me know how it all goes