Notes toward an essay on responsibility, part 6: Equanimity
Everyone is exactly the same in wanting happiness and not desiring suffering. The extremes of tremendous attachment to pleasures and tremendous aversion to the pains create imbalance, then disorder, then insanity, then death. Examing these factors carefully easily keeps your mind balanced and healthy.
Here's how: memorise the following:
Pleasure equals attachment.
Pain equals anger.
Neutral equal ignorance.
When you have a feeling of being caged or imprisoned by pain, pleasure, and neutrality, then it's working. It needs to be revisited sometimes. Knowing that equanimity takes practice and careful forethought is already a big advance over the normal run of humans.
In the final sections of these notes I will discuss the three paths of practice which support responsibility. They are what is known as initiatoric paths, in that they are not for the faint hearted, nor are they easily gained except through daily practice. Such daily practice presupposes the equanimity to be dedicated and persistent.