too keen too vulnerable


Buddhists look at strong emotions through the lens of buddhist psychological theory: aversion and craving.

The stronger a person’s desire for an object, the stronger the craving for more once that desire is temporarily satisfied. In parallel, the person also experiences a great fear of losing the object. This fear of loss translates easily into the desire to control the object.

In situations where control is not possible, suffering can then lead to the mirror image of the desire which is an aversion of the object. The stronger the craving, the stronger the aversion. However, as both craving and aversion have the same root cause, aversion is not a stable state and soon changes back into craving.

The unfortunate person caught in this cycle of aversion and craving can be said to be experiencing dukkha. The seed behind the desire that starts this cycle is attachement.

In the last few months of being single, I’d forgotten about dukkha and how vulnerable i am to it and the entire cycle i listed above when i am attached. If rindu has a sense of irony and indulgence, dukkha (which is also a malay word duka of pretty much the same basic meaning) does not. I am particularly susceptible to fearing loss and see hints and signs of it too easily. Previous neutral signs or indications can too easily be re-interpreted negatively. Hence, dukkha.

I do not have a lot of options. The first is to seek reasonable amounts of reassurance although this is tricky as ”reasonable” is so subjective. The second is the tried and true buddhist method of liberation from suffering: meditation. There is a third option of running for the hills, an unhealthy permanent aversion option, but i’ve promised myself not to do this.

So it looks like meditation.

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