Unpleasant Emotions

by Friends of Godwin

I think everyone is familiar with other unpleasant emotions like anxiety, fear, sadness, guilt – all these are quite familiar to us. And what normally happens is that when we experience them, we have no way, we have no tools to work with them. So human beings have become helpless victims of these unpleasant emotions which really control us, overwhelm us and affect us. In meditation, there are techniques and ways to work with these unpleasant emotions. In fact there has been a very interesting book, “Emotional Intelligence”. The author, who is a Buddhist, says that human beings are trying to develop more and more high I.Q., but what is more important is to develop an intelligent way of working with emotions. This book has become a best-seller, and there have been lots of workshops on this problem, because in this modern world unpleasant emotions are a real challenge.

So here again, meditation, especially the aspect of awareness, helps us to work with these emotions. One method is not to repress them, not to control them, nor to express them but just to be aware of the emotions when they are there. In fact in meditation there are other tools, techniques, for working with these emotions. We cannot prevent these emotions from arising but what we can learn is how to work with them when they arise rather than continue to suffer as a result of them.