From Thich Nhat Hanh’s The Heart of Buddha’s Teaching: “The Seventh Factor of Awakening is equanimity, or letting go (upeksha). Equanimity is an aspect of true love. It is far from indifference. Practicing equanimity, we love everyone equally. … To be a disciple of the Buddha, your heart must bear no hatred, you must utter no unkind words, you must remain compassionate, with no hostility or ill-will.” As a young monk, I memorized these words and even put them to music. This teaching touches our most noble intention, but it is the opposite of our strong habit energies. To transform these habit energies and realize our noblest intention, the Buddha and the Venerable Shariputra taught us: (1) to practice equanimity in the face of harsh words; (2) to learn not to feel annoyance, bitterness, or dejection; and (3) not to feel elated when praised, because we know that any praise is not for us as an individual, but for many beings, including our parents, teachers, friends, and all forms of life.”


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