Becoming our own best friend

Warm greetings to you!  I have a simple thought I would like to share with you.

It comes from the former monk, Cory Muscara, bestselling author of Stop Missing Your Life and host of Practicing Human podcast.

Cory knows what happens when you spend 6 months meditating in silence with only bare necessities on hand.

“It was the hardest experience of my life. And by far, the most rewarding.”

Hard and rewarding is a powerful combination! This is the cornerstone of a sophisticated philosophy. It’s the opposite of simple pleasure-seeking, which is only full of flashes of satisfaction and leaves one with an unquenched deeper thirst. Thank you for that, Cory!

What did Cory learn during his time of intense meditation training? What did it boil down to for him?

“I became my own best friend. It’s as simple as that. And it has made EVERYTHING in my life easier, especially the hard times. I feel like I have a constant inner companion rooting me on, reassuring me, and reminding me of what’s possible. It’s like an inner coziness. I’m so grateful for it.”

This is profound. Life doesn’t have to be complex. This is my simple Friday message today. Self-love is a huge answer to life’s questions. And it becomes reality not through the knowledge of it, but through action: repeated action, known as practice. Go on, Cory. Tell us how it happens.

“I’ll share how it happens in meditation. When you meditate, you intentionally turn toward your experience with presence and compassion. You choose to meet whatever arises–difficult thoughts, negative emotions, painful sensations — with curious, loving awareness. You learn to be with, relax into, and show steadiness toward all aspects of yourself.

You replace judgment with understanding.
Hatred with compassion.
And tension with ease.”

What is more important than sinking into loving contact with ourselves? I’ll take this one: NOTHING! It’s foundational for mental health which is foundational for physical health. And no shortcuts will do. It’s about creating a daily habit in support of self care. What are the main prerequisites? I would say the intention to do it and regular quiet time. Love takes time. Cory?

“Over time, you develop a deep self-respect because you see just how messy and confusing this human experience is, and what it takes to keep showing up for it. The inner friendship grows organically.

There is no room for perfectionism; it doesn’t fit. Practice meeting whatever arises with curious, loving attention. It’s a simple and clear direction.

And I can’t think of any greater gift we can offer ourselves in this life, because at the end of the day, we have to go through this life alone.”

No one can fill you with self-love but you. We have to confront our whole selves to get there.

The initial course in life is to look externally for answers. Subsequently, we can start the process, through stillness, to a different approach. We can look internally for answers. With loving, curious attention, we can be filled with self-love and then give that to the world. Thanks, Cory.

“Let this be the beginning of a new relationship with yourself.”

Agreed! And thankfully we have each other for support as we find our way together.