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Am I still a spiritual person even if I feel anger, irritation, and even hatred? 3 ways to work with “negative” emotions.

January 15, 2024   |   9 Comments

Audio only version is here
Meditation begins at 12:00

Dear wonderful Open Heart Project,

I hope your year is off to a wonderful start and you are able to find peace within and around yourself. 

It’s possible you thought, as did I, that meditation would help you feel…less. Less rage. Less sorrow. I’d have even settled for less crankiness. No such luck–I’m still a human being. I made this video for those of you who fear that anger or other so-called negative emotions mean you are not a spiritual person. YOU ARE!  

Before today’s sit, I offer some thoughts on how to work with our most difficult feelings. Note: none of these suggestions are about becoming anything other than who you are. All of them are about how we can work with anything that arises within us as our path: even rage, bitterness, fear, and heartache, all the things we just wish we did not have to feel. It is all fodder for your awakening. At least that’s what I think.

What do you think? I always love to hear from you. 

With love, Susan

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  • Posted by:  Stefanie Moriarty

    Thank you Susan. The kindness and curiosity in which you present these teachings is inspiring to me! 💜

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      So glad to hear it! <3 S

  • Posted by:  Sue Ellen May

    Perfect teaching for today. Long story short, I spent a weekend with a group of a dozen friends at a fiber retreat that included a gift exchange near the end. It was joyous, warm, all the fuzzy feels. After the gift exchange, I felt horrified, mortified, and ashamed that my gift was insufficient. I cried on my dear friend’s shoulder. I fled and spent the next day at home beating myself up. I have started to realize that most of this angst was really social anxiety, a feeling of being overwhelmed. During the weekend I did connect 1:1 with several friends in quiet spaces, which was lovely. Perhaps I’m a bit on the spectrum, perhaps I get saturated with others’ energies in the emotional chaos of a large group. So all three of the ways of looking at emotions seem to arise. Reflecting on my past, I’m wondering if this budding awareness of intolerance of large groups hasn’t resonated over time and experience. Going on from here, I can embrace the gift of 1:1 connection (as a former therapist, it was my happy place), be more aware in large group settings and allow kindness to myself to pull back a bit as well as showing compassion for others who might be similarly stressed. Thank you as always for your timely and thoughtful instruction.

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      So lovely to read your reflections. As always! Truly, you are making your experience a part of the path. Sending much love.

  • Posted by:  Janet

    Susan, thank you for this. It has led me to begin working more closely with my aversion to so-called negative or unpleasant feelings and to view them from different angles; to contemplate what I can do with them other than dodging, hiding, or being angry because these feelings arise. Maybe they can be used as nourishment for my practice. Like fertilizer for a garden! 🙂

    • Posted by:  Sue Ellen May

      Janet – What a wonderful and rich image – fertilizer for the garden! Thank you for that.

  • Posted by:  Amy Oliff

    Thank you as always Susan, this teaching from you came at just the right time!
    Ahh the space between the stories and the feelings, so essential.
    And…. wow!!! “Your whole life is your path, is your practice”.
    Sending love, space and ease to you….

  • Posted by:  Betsy

    As Amy mentioned, I appreciated your reminder that letting go of the stories provides an essential gap with the feelings. If I understand you, this gap allows for wisdom, compassion and non-aggressive responses to self to arise. And, in the future to provide deep compassion to others who may experience similar feelings. Thank you for your teachings. With great appreciation. Betsy

  • Posted by:  Joanne Gardner

    Thank you Susan always for your wonderful meditation sessions, they help me so much and are making such a difference to the way I handle situations that arise daily. Kindest regards Jo

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