Cultivating the Mind of Compassion in a Crazy World: Step 1

January 24, 2022   |   18 Comments

Audio-only version is here.
Meditation practice begins at 14:43.

Dear Open Heart Project,

It is an honor to send you this first of four videos in a series called “Cultivating the Mind of Compassion in a Crazy World.”

Is it possible to do this? Is it even desirable? You have to figure out your own answers. I hope these videos will assist you in that regard.

I decided to create this series a few weeks ago and it turns out that the first video comes just days after the passing of Thich Nhat Hanh who was (and is) the most extraordinary advocate for and teacher of compassion. He taught that love, whether sweet or fierce, was always possible, even in the most dire of circumstances. I feel that in some small way, to examine how to cultivate the mind of compassion is a tribute to him.

In the Buddhist view that I have studied, the mind of compassion arises under four circumstances:

Affection for the World (discussed today)

Faith in the Right Situations (Feb 7)

Warmth for Sentient Beings (Feb 21)

Bravery (Mar 7)

I look forward to exploring it all with you.

As you know, this series is free, so please forward to anyone you think might be interested. They can sign up for the series here.

With love, Susan

Announcing Four Classes to Explore the Five Buddha Wisdoms with Kevin Townley

February 10 @ 6:00 pm7:30 pm ET

Additional Event Dates: February 17, 24, March 3

Please join writer and art savant Kevin Townley to hear his unique insights into the Five Buddha Wisdoms. Starting February 10th, Kevin will draw from his wide-ranging body of knowledge to teach how the tantric Buddhist view is reflected in the work of secular artists. Material will be drawn from his upcoming book, Look, Look, Look, Look, Look Again: Buddhist Wisdom Reflected in 26 Artists. You can find all of the details here. This program is $54 or free for Open Heart Project Sangha members.

You can join the Sangha here.

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  • Posted by:  Miles D. Kessler

    “Bad-Ass Looking Black Eye” for a bad-ass Buddhist teacher! Sending a Medicine Buddha chant to you, the great TNH, and all living beings!


    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      Thank you, dear Miles!! I really appreciate this. Hope you are well and thriving. With love, Susan

  • Posted by:  Karen

    thank you, Susan – it’s a tall order to keep that mind camera off and to simply see/hear/feel without my own projections. it makes it more interesting/compelling when I remind myself that my experience can be a lot more spacious and enjoyable when I do! I’m glad your black-eye incident wasn’t any worse than it was… love, Karen

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      Yes, the tallest order, I think! I appreciate you for investigating it all. And the black eye looks worse than it feels… Sending love, Susan

  • Posted by:  April D Allen

    Dear Susan,
    What a wonderful start to what I know will be a very helpful series. I fell on the ice myself yesterday, so I could relate (but then I always relate to your words and wisdom)! Thank you so very much for this lesson – you have a way of making a difficult subject astonishingly clear. Be well and heal quickly! 🙂 <3

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      Happy you can relate to this teaching–but not the ice tripping! Hope you didn’t hurt yourself? And many thanks for your kind words. With love, Susan

  • Posted by:  Catherine Lethbridge

    Dear Susan,
    I’m traveling with my family now and the luxury of being able to tune in and be in tune with you always sets my day, no matter where I am or who I’m with.
    Thanks Katie

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      Katie, what a lovely, lovely message. Thank you so much for taking the time to send. Enjoy your travels! With love, Susan

  • Posted by:  Donna

    I managed to hear your words despite relating to my falling on ice here. Best to you! And, feel better soon.

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      Thanks! I totally feel fine and hope you do too…

  • Posted by:  Wini

    Thank you Susan. Opening up in me these words, “Compassion begins with turning the projector off”. wowsa a game changer to feel into this — this place of seeing my meaning-my critiques or my projections on everything is a form of aggression.,. 🤷 Who knew 😂 and the power, the heart of meeting what is.

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      Your heart shines through in every word, every moment. <3 S

  • Posted by:  jane muddiman-fox

    Thank you so much. How lovely to sit together.

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      Yes! I too am happy we can practice together. With love, Susan

  • Posted by:  Shayna Casey

    Thanks so much for this teaching. I found the comparison of a musician doing scales to a person practicing meditation so useful. I am grateful that I was introduced to your work, Susan, because it always helps me see things in a new way.

    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      So great to hear this, Shayna. With love, S

  • Posted by:  Sharron

    “Affection for the world is more being with than feeling kindly towards.” My AHA from today 🙂 And it’s good to be reminded about “my projector” lol. Thank you, Susan.


    • Posted by:  Susan Piver

      You are so welcome. Much love, S

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