“When we feel down and sad, the Buddhist teaching that we have everything we need, and that we are already perfect as we are, can be hard to swallow. To think that we are already Buddha, already enlightened, already who and where we need to be, seems a cruel joke. If this is so, why do we not feel enlightened? Why do we suffer? Why must we work to uncover this enlightenment?
Yet even in the midst of these feelings and questions, it is possible to find the seed of our awakening, the seed of our Buddha nature within. We see it in our not giving up, in seeking after truth, in offering our unhesitating help to a friend. Like a seed in the soil, this one is buried deep within us, far from light, and it needs nourishment in order to grow and come forth.
Meditation is one way of nourishing this seed. Other ways include laughter, and working with others, and making our best effort in each moment. Also acting in a way that acknowledges our connections with others, and the sacred nature of all beings.
In these times, and in this culture, it is not surprising that so many of us see ourselves as valueless. Many of us have been raised to believe in an innate sinfulness in each of us. In addition, in north America we believe in the supremacy of the individual, that all of us can achieve anything we want to – and that if we don’t, it is because there is something lacking in us. New Age thought further encourages us to think that everything that happens to us is due to our thoughts, dreams, and beliefs. And even north American Buddhism has taken the concepts of karma and reincarnation and wrongly distilled them into a Buddhist Puritanism, where our joy or sorrow in the present moment is supposedly the result of whether we have been good or bad in the past.”
Philip Martin – Zen Path Through Depression
Now, have another look at the above quotes.
“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”
Find your religion.