A few unkind words from loved one, that's all it had taken for me to go down the unhappy path, again.
In my head, I knew better than to blame, and complain. The last round had me convinced, the real problem was inside.
Why then the mind's reluctance to actually forgive, and forego? Thoughts about the offense, and lingering pain in the heart, kept on spoiling new moments.
Old habits die hard, it is said. Once deluded mind had been programmed to hang on to the suffering of bruised ego.
But wait, this did not make any sense. Why be so unkind, to myself? Loved one had long forgotten about our exchange. I, on the other hand, continued to stir the wound.
Reading Ayya Khema, I found the words I had been looking for:
"We let the mind get burned, scratched, and abraded by its ego assertions and reactions, and afflicted with worldly considerations of like and dislike, anger and rejection. These ideas scratch at the pure texture of the mind. If we wound the mind often enough - and nobody's immune from that - scratches become deep scars, difficult to heal. These scars are our limitations. The mind is a jewel, beautiful in its purity. Scarring and scratching brings unhappiness. Only we can protect the mind. Only we can prevent the negative thoughts that scratch the jewel of the mind. When we truly work for our inner purification, we need no longer blame outside conditions for our reactions. We are the guardians and cultivators of the mind." ~ from, Be an Island ~
With even greater clarity, I could see: to restore pure mind, or to continue the scratching, the choice was up to me. I loved myself too much to suffer any longer.