Friends of Godwin Samararatne

Learn to be your best friend and also to be a friend of others. Learn to forgive yourself and others and then heal any wounds that you are carrying.

Month: September, 2019

Without a Model of Perfection


One issue which I have been encountering when working with meditators over the years is the problem of self-hatred, people who don’t seem to like themselves. I’ve often wondered what are the possible reasons why there should be this aspect of not liking oneself. There are two possible reasons for that.

One is that it may be related to our childhood conditioning, where we are given models or ideas as to how we should behave, so there can sometimes be a conflict between what you are and what you should become. And when you are unable to achieve the model that is given to you, it is possible that you can develop hatred towards yourself, to see yourself as a failure.

Another way this self-hatred may arise is again related to the way children are brought up, where sometimes there is a tendency on the part of parents or teachers to point out only the shortcomings and mistakes that one commits. So this may also generate self-hatred and a tendency to disparage oneself. And this can really prevent people from experiencing lightness and joy in their practice.

I use meditation of loving-kindness to work with this condition, where it is psychologically interesting that in this meditation one begins with oneself, learning to be friendly, gentle, tender and kind to oneself, just accepting oneself as one is, without a model of perfection which can be imposed on one.

Very Clearly


When we have strong pre-occupations, when our mind is full of thoughts, we can hardly see anything externally. You might be passing through the most beautiful place but you hardly notice the beauty because your mind is full of these pre-occupations and thoughts.

In the same way we can’t see what is in our own mind because there is no space, there is no clarity. This is why I also gave an exercise of learning to awaken the senses by seeing things very sharply, hearing things very clearly. That can create space in your mind. And then you can learn to see things very sharply, very clearly. You’ll be able to hear things sharply and clearly. You’ll be able to feel things very clearly, and also there’ll be clarity and space in our mind. However much these things are told, they may not make any sense until you have a glimpse, a small experience of these matters. This is the beauty of meditation, you can see for yourself, not because someone says so, or because something is mentioned in the books. So the whole emphasis in meditation is for you to see it,  to experience it for yourself.