Dealing with Emotions

About this section:
In the course of one day, we experience so many emotions. Some, such as genuine love and compassion, are valuable. Others, such as attachment, anger, closed-mindedness, pride and jealously, disturb our mental peace and lead us to act in ways that hurt ourselves and others. These pieces help us to examine our disturbing attitudes and negative emotions and to explore some antidotes to pacify and transform them.


Emotional Health
© Venerable Thubten Chodron
July 2007
Madison, Wisconsin USA

Venerable Chodron gave two talks at the University of Wisconsin in Madison on Emotional Health in July of 2007

Emotional Health: The Source of Happiness and Problems
6 July 2007
[48 minutes] : Download mp3 file

Ven. Chodron talks about what is real happiness and what is not. She explains how we think that happiness comes from external situations and objects and that we try to manipulate our environment to achieve happiness. She talks about how the source of our happiness and suffering is the mind. Ven. Chodron explains how suffering comes from craving and the self-centered thought and how we can achieve real happiness by switching the focus from self to others.

[33 minutes] : Download mp3 file

  • What are some basic steps to start to take to subdue the craving mind?
  • What can lay people do in their daily life to turn away from the feeling of discontent?
  • The media create an “us and them”, and “they” are bad and we should be afraid of them and attack them.
  • How do you separate negative desires and positive aspirations?
  • How can you cultivate internal happiness without enhancing self-centeredness?
  • Dealing with self-pity.

Emotional Health: How to Handle Tragic Events with Compassion
13 July 2007
[33 minutes] : Download mp3 file

A few days prior to this talk the body of a young woman, a University of Wisconsin student, was found in the woods near where Ven. Chodron and others were staying and attending teachings. The murder of the young woman touched those attending the teachings and others in the community. Ven. Chodron talked about ways to view the victim, family, and perpetrator in such situations and develop compassion for them. She talked about it in the context of the first verse of the Eight Verses of Thought Transformation.

Emotional Health: Rejoicing in the Good Qualities of Others
13 July 2007
[17 minutes] : Download mp3 file

Ven. Chodron talks about emotional health and the second verse of the Eight Verses of Thought Transformation.

[33 minutes] : Download mp3 file

  • What is the line between being naïve and being judgmental?
  • What kind of intervention does Buddhism recommend for drug addiction?
  • How can I deal with an employee of a domestic violence program who is judgmental and uncompassionate?
  • How can you view yourself as the “lowest of all” without slipping into low self-esteem?
  • How do Buddhists view the government, and capital punishment?
  • How can one decrease competitiveness and increase collaboration in the professional work place?


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