The following meditation is led by Tara Brach. To access more of my meditations or join my email list, please visit TaraBrach.com.
This is a meditation using the acronym rain. Recognize, allow, investigate and nurture bringing mindfulness and compassion to an area of difficulty in our life.
So I invite you to begin by paying attention to the movement of the breath. And sensing the possibility of relaxing with the breath.
You might send see in breath, being like an balloon that's inflating just filling yourself receiving a healing prana life they outbreath are releasing, letting go.
As you breathe, you might sense that there are areas in your body that are wanting to let go. That naturally can release right now.
Perhaps letting go on the shoulders, softening the hands, relaxing the belly, relaxing the heart. Continuing to relax with the movement of the breath. The mind drifts with thoughts. And you notice that just relaxing open. Your senses be awake and gently landing resting again with the breath.
It's from this wakeful presence that you can scan your life now and sense of there's a place of difficulty that's bringing up challenging emotions may be an illness or something going on in a relationship conflict and addictive behavior something going on at work that is triggering feelings of fear or hurt or shame, sadness.
Bring to mind a situation that in some way brings up reactive emotion that you'd like to find more balance in the midst It won't serve so well to bring up the situation of it feels like it evokes trauma.
Pick something that or there's a charged reaction, but not something that feels overwhelming.
And let yourself bring to mind the situation that really exemplifies where this gets triggered. Might be a situation with somebody else where you're seeing what their face looks like, and the words are speaking, right at the moment where you get triggered, or might be a situation where you're alone, but in some way, behaving in an addictive way that is upsetting to sensing the room you're in.
Like watching a movie, go to the frame where you feel most emotionally reactive. Allow yourself to freeze the frame.
Sense what's triggering you and we begin RAIN.
The R of rain is to recognize by recognizing whatever's most predominant, that's going on inside you might be feeling anger, or hurt.
Or maybe you feel totally frozen with some sort of stuck in tension, unable to do anything. Else with anxiety, just naming for yourself. whatever it is you're most aware of.
Recognize goes with Allow the A of rain, which is just to let it be there right now.
With allow we we pause and we make space for what's here.
Allow doesn't mean you like it, it means that you're acknowledging that this is the life of the moment. You're letting it be there.
By allowing, you're able to then begin to deepen your attention.
The I of RAIN is investigate. You might begin by asking what most wants attention. What's the most difficult part of this?
With Investigate, you're feeling into your body. Feeling into the place of failure or shame or judgment or dislike or fear.
It can sometimes help to ask yourself, What am I believing when this is happening?
Am I believing that? Somebody feels like that I'm not special? Do I feel or believe that I'm not understood? That I'm invisible. That I'm a failure that I'm unlovable. sensitive, there's a belief going to I believe that I'm disrespected.
But most importantly, common to the body and sense how whatever you're believing is felt in the body.
Pay attention to your throat, your heart, your belly. What emotion might be there? What's the felt sense? Sort of feeling of clench or wrongness or aching squeezed.
You can investigate more fully if you assume the facial expression of what you're feeling.
Don't be inhibited. Go ahead and just let your face take on the expression of whatever is really being triggered.
And you can even change your body posture, you may end up feeling like you're on a raise or hunched your shoulders, maybe your hands want to come into fists, whatever it is, but allow your body and your face to express what might be going on inside you.
That's a part of investigating and fully contacting the experience. What do you notice? Where do you feel most vulnerable in your body? Where does vulnerability live right now? And if that vulnerable place and you could communicate, why would it want you to know?
Maybe there's words maybe there's a stronger feeling heart damage.
The investigate begins to move towards nurturing.
When you asked that vulnerable place, how do you want me to be with you? You might ask What is this place most need right now? What is it most need? does it want to trust something or to feel something in particular, to know something?
Asking, investigating and begin to sense now the possibility of responding to this place inside you from the most loving and wise part of you. And as a way of getting in touch with that you might take a few full breaths and maybe find yourself adjusting your posture a little. Even assuming the facial expression that most allows you to inhabit your high self or what some people call their future self who were really evolving into the most awakened heart. But staying in contact with the vulnerability, listening, feeling.
What is this place most need calling on your wisdom and your love now, sense that you can offer to this vulnerability you can nurture this vulnerability by offering what's needed. You might begin by sensing where it lives in your body and gently bringing a hand perhaps to your heart or your belly. As if you're most wise and loving part of your being could offer a tender touch. Letting energy start flowing into the place of vulnerability.
If you haven't done this before, if you put your hand on your heart and rivairy the touch until it feels tender. That's the beginning of a radical shift where we start to regard with compassion, our inner life.
What words or message to this part most need to hear? Can you offer that? It might be something as simple as I'm sorry, and I love you. Or I care about the suffering. Or I'm not leaving. You belong. You're a part of this life.
It feels difficult to offer compassion from your own high self, you might invoke or invite, some being that represents compassion and love. Just call on that be, could be a person, teacher healer that you know someone living or dead. A relative. A child could be the Buddha or Jesus or great mother.
It could be the love and the wisdom that fills this universe and let it flow through your hands. flow into your heart and into where the vulnerability laughs Rumi says don't turn away.
Keep your gaze on the bandage place. That's where the light enters you. explore what it means to really let in love.
But inhaling being the holder and the hell we follow rain.
Recognize, allow, investigate and nurture with what's called after the rain, some moments of resting in the heart space and presence sits here. As relax and let it fill you. You've been just dissolved into it.
Be aware of the quality of presence that's here. What's it like?
What's the sense of your own being who you are right now?
How is this shifted from when you began the meditation. sensing the heart space that's here. Interesting.
This is more the truth of who you are and then any story you could ever tell about yourself. Trusting in and resting in the present that is your true home.