Jack Kornfield – Heart Wisdom – Ep. 8 – Transforming Darkness


Transforming Darkness: In attempting to draw light into our lives, we inevitably encounter the intrinsic darkness that surrounds our existence. Our task, as honorable beings, is to avoid letting the ignorant darkness take over our hearts, while simultaneously not averting our gaze. In meditation, we confront the full spectrum of experience, acknowledging these darker forces, and discovering the capacity to respond from a place of loving awareness. It will require the courage to act, but as the Buddha said, “If you can learn to dwell in your heart, offering love to all beings, that will be protection wherever you go.”

Episode Outline:

  • 2 Kinds of Darkness – Fertile (From which all things arise – contains the potential of creation) and Blind/Unconscious (Operates below our basic level of awareness, often requires uncovering/recognition)
  • Practice – When we honor our meditation practice, we see everything – the full spectrum of our experience
  • Our Task – As honorable beings, we mustn’t let the outer (ignorant) darkness consume our hearts, while, simultaneously, not averting our eyes.
  • Violence – Has almost always been a part of our culture – What are the causes and conditions that create these negative aspects? We have to mourn tragedy, but also stand up for a different world. The darkness must be met with an equal force of love and courage
  • Dwell in the Heart – Never cease to offer love to all beings

Stuff from this episode:

Books –

Jack Kornfield – The Wise Heart: A Guide to the Universal Teachings of Buddhist Psychology

Jack Kornfield – Meditation for Beginners

Jack Kornfield – A Path with Heart: A Guide Through the Perils and Promises of Spiritual Life

Jack Kornfield – A Lamp in the Darkness: Illuminating the Path Through Difficult Times

Jack Kornfield – Bringing Home the Dharma: Awakening Right Where You Are



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