When you realize that your greatest defilement is facing you and there seems no way to get out of it because it’s so big, the instruction is, let go of the story line, let go of the conversation, and own your feeling completely. Let the words go and return to the essential quality of the underlying stuff. That’s the notion of the inbreath, the notion of making friends with ourselves at a profound level. In the process we are making friends with all sentient beings, because that is what life is made of. Working with the greater defilements first is saying that now is the time, and also that our greatest obstacles are our greatest wealth.
—Start Where You Are by Pema Chödrön, page 154–155
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This quote from Start Where You Are is also included in the free ebook compilation, Radical Compassion: Shambhala Publications Authors on the Path of Boundless Love. In addition to an excerpt from Pema, this anthology features some of our most popular authors writing on the topic of compassion, including Chögyam Trungpa, Dzogchen Ponlop, Ken Wilber, and Reggie Ray.