Divine Abodes, Part 4: Sympathetic Joy

The fourth Divine Abode, or quality of heart and mind that is an important part of our practices of resilience, is “sympathetic joy” (mudita in Pali). Sympathetic joy is our ability to find joy in another person’s joy and good fortune.

Joy can be, and should be contagious. Often, however, when we see other people’s joy, we get caught up in envy and FOMO (fear of missing out.) Instead, we can learn to cultivate our natural ability to feel joy when another is feeling joy.

And joy is embodied. See if when you are feeling joy, you can feel what it’s like in your body. What’s the sensation like? Where do you feel it?

In a trans and gender-expansive context, we can cultivate the joy of seeing other trans and gender-expansive folks following their hearts and finding the joy that comes with living an authentic life, instead of gatekeeping, and deciding for them what’s the right or wrong way to be trans, non-binary, etc.

For this week, which holds the Transgender Day of Visibility, let’s cultivate the joy that comes with more and more of us being able to live our authentic lives, out loud, out proud, and resilient.

May we be happy
May our happiness continue
May we appreciate our joy
May we be happy for each other

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