We are conditioned to think some things are true and some are false, but your ideas about what is arising are ALWAYS a projection. When anger starts to arise, if you add any kind of story at all, you perpetuate the negativity. If you believe something is true you validate it. If you disbelieve it, you are trying to get rid of what is arising. You don’t have to believe or disbelieve anything. This path is about being genuine.
When it comes to investigating negativity, trust yourself. Use whatever investigations draw you in. There are lots of ways of looking at the mind to investigate the contents, but if you look for a source of negativity, you won’t find it.
It seems to be necessary to include the practice of being with your negativity rather than trying to get rid of it. Sit down and practice just observing negativity arise without doing anything with it. Do a lot of it. This is the start of compassion.
Redundant negativity Is like getting mad at being mad. It is thinking there is something to do about negativity when it arises so we justify it, or push it down or ignore it. This tends to just add to the suffering. Practice holding still and observe the original negativity without adding anything to it. Let it do what it needs to do.
Dana, the Sanskrit word generosity, is the practice of giving your attention and receiving what arises. When thoughts arise in the mind or with what others are saying to you, give it your attention and just receive, even if it is in the form of negativity. The way we work with that is in the negativity itself, not separate. It takes some courage to just receive and not create the one who is against or wants to fix the negativity. If your awareness is powerful, you my watch yourself hold still or you may go into action without an agenda. No one is wrong that needs to be corrected. This is the practice of generosity.
Sokuzan talks about the practice of “Tonglen”, or sending out positivity and receiving negativity while riding the breath, reversing the tendency of ego. He suggests that without a strong awareness practice, taking in negativity may cause more difficulty and instead recommends the practice of “Maitri Bhavana” or extending the intent of loving kindness to others.