Enjoying the Happiness of Others November 11, 2020

This talk reviews mudita, typically translated as sympathetic joy, and represents the ability to emotionally resonate with the happiness of other beings.  Sympathetic joy is a manifestation of lovingkindness and is similar to compassion, as both are ways that the mind can respond skillfully and beneficially to the innate emotional resonance all humans share.  Compassion resonates to the distress and confusion of others, while sympathetic joy resonates to the success and happiness of others.  Peter reviews what are called the “far enemy” and “near enemy” of mudita, emphasizing the importance of persistent cultivation of mindfulness to monitor and balance the empathic attunement process that is manifested.  The review is followed by discussion of the application of mudita among the participants.  This discussion is intended to be accompanied by “Guided Enjoying the Happiness of Others Meditation”, recorded the same night.

Here are the notes prepared for this talk:  Enjoying the Happiness of Others

Next week’s talk will focus on the mind conditioning factor of Wisdom, that is, a correct understanding of how the wholesome mind conditioning factors cooperate and integrate into daily life experience.


Guided Enjoying the Happiness of Others Meditation

This meditation combines mindfulness of breathing meditation with focused attention on the area around the heart for contemplating the joyful feelings that can be realized in witnessing the happiness of others.  Breath awareness stabilizes attention and sets aside the hindrances, while focused attention on the heart invites emotional awareness in the context of celebrating the joy and happiness of others.  During the meditation you can recall experiences when you benefited from the generosity of others and then use that as a model for realizing the benefits of empathically resonating with the success and happiness of people or other beings such as pets.  This meditation is intended to complement the talk entitled “Enjoying the Happiness of Others” recorded on November 11, 2020.