and how we feel.
Visualize freedom and compassion.
Patterns of thought that are negative can be so harmful, worry, greed, self loathing.
And a part of us knows those thoughts are not true.
We can become marked by our past experiences by destructive thoughts.
We can mentally isolate those thoughts,
we can reduce them,
we can stop them.
When happiness arises we can chose
that those destructive states have no valid foundation.
We can choose happiness.
In High Tide in Tucson, novelist Barbara Kingsolver
talks about how this transformation is possible,
even when our old life in in ruins:
"Every one of us is called upon, probably many times, to start a new life.
A frightening diagnosis, a marriage, a move,
loss of a job or a limb or a loved one, a graduation, bring a new baby home.
It is impossible to think at first how this all will be possible.
Eventually, what movies it all forward is the ebb and flow
of being alive among the living.
In my own worst seasons I have come back from the colorless world of despair
by forcing myself to look hard, for a long time,
at a single glorious thing:
a flame of a red carnation outside my bedroom window.
And then another: my daughter in a yellow dress.
And another: the perfect outline of a full, dark sphere behind the crescent moon.
Until I learned to be in love with my life again.
Like a stroke victim restraining new parts of the brain to grasp lost skills,
I have taught myself joy,
over and over and over again."