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Buddhadharma : Winter 2010
47 winter 2 01 0 buddhadharma: the practitioner’s quarterly turmoil, we’re prob- ably going to make the situation worse, not better. It’s important to go through what- ever it takes to get to the point where we can speak clearly and calmly, and not defensively. However, it can be hard to get to the point where that’s possible. Buddhadharma: It sounds like you almost have to don a suit of armor as you prepare to speak out. Lama PaLden droLma: I don’t think that’s true. It’s more about being centered and grounded, and, like Rita was saying, hav- ing worked through our emotional reactivity around it so we can be heard more clearly. We can also model how to rest in the realization of the emptiness of self, and be assertive and clear and step forward simultaneously. rita Gross: For me, what it took was seeing that my violent, angry, emotional outbursts were polarizing the situation. They might have provided a temporary relief for me, but they weren’t doing anything to help anybody. Christina FeLdman: If women speak from a sense of need— needing approval or needing to belong—it’s never from a sense of sufficiency. The more that women find that sufficiency within their practice, within themselves, they’re not speaking from a place of need and therefore there doesn’t need to be anger, there doesn’t need to be armor. There’s no need to be defensive, because sufficiency is not reliant upon approval or belonging or acceptance. GraCe sChireson: Still, even if we come from a place of suf- ficiency, and even if we’re grounded in the realization of self- lessness while we’re being assertive, we’re likely to encounter some reactivity in our audience. I think we need to be prepared for that. Whether you call it armoring photos clockwise from left: StePh wenderSki; a. JeSSe Jiryu daviS; elizabeth vigeon; unknown ➤ continued page 90