This is one of my favourite pieces. I have listened to Pema Chodron’s talk on shenpa and it was truly an aha moment.

Shambhala Blog

Book coverIn Tibetan there is a word that points to the root cause of aggression, the root cause also of craving. It points to a familiar experience that is at the root of all conflict, all cruelty, oppression, and greed. This word is shenpa. The usual translation is ?attachment,? but this doesn?t adequately express the full meaning. I think of shenpa as ?getting hooked.? Another definition, used by Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche, is the ?charge??the charge behind our thoughts and words and actions, the charge behind ?like? and ?don?t like.? Here?s an everyday example: Someone criticizes you. She criticizes your work or your appearance or your child. In moments like that, what is it you feel? It has a familiar taste, a familiar smell. Once you begin to notice it, you feel like this experience has been happening forever. That sticky feeling is shenpa. And it comes along with a…

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