Three new texts about anxiety

These three texts, Anxiety and Doubt, On Anxiety, and Anxiety Awareness Ease, support and complement each other.

All beings in samsara have their functional root in ignorance and their intrinsic root in unborn awareness. Ignorance is inseparable from anxiety although ignorance generates our ego-self which is endlessly pretending to be confident and free of anxiety. Through understanding anxiety as it permeates our perceptions and choices moment by moment we can find ourself present at the very arising of ignorance and by non-involvement find liberation.

In the tradition we are encouraged to approach our dharma life through three linked stages: study, reflection, meditation. We should study attentively, with recollection and without mixing non-dharma with dharma. This provides a good basis for reflective consideration, walking around what we have studied as if it were a statue. New aspects of the teaching are revealed and each needs to be reflected on in relation to our own life experience. Do not let dharma become abstract. Apply what you learn to everything that occurs so that it becomes alive in you as a concrete approach to knowing.

We are not concerned with introjecting a dogmatic truth but with practising how to see by utilising the illuminating power of the manifold dharma of the Buddha. Following the Middle Way, we avoid the extremes of rigid dogma or anything goes. Although dharma teaching is manifold the aim is always our awakening and liberation.

So, if you are interested, you can read these three texts and use their different flavours to help you explore your own personal lived experience of anxiety. You can also reflect on anxiety in your family, relationships, work and the wider world. Reflection helps to massage the elixir of dharma into the tough skin of our defended ego so that we can soften, become pliable, sensitive and responsive.

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