Hold The Center
You always want to be strong down the middle. This is true in sports. In baseball you want a good catcher, pitcher, middle infield, and center fielder. If you are a boxer you want to have a strong core be able to take and deal out punishment to the body. In our own physicality we want to have a strong core. In keeping physical balance it is important to come from inside out -- not over extending yourself. You must come from the gut to be strong and balanced physically.
This is also true in our relationship to the world and ourselves. We cannot look to our loved ones for our essential sense of self and well being. Their opinion may be important and worthy of our respect, but in the end we must answer our own existential question. Why am I here? What is the life of integrity? You must have your foundation built from the inside out to be strong and balanced emotionally.
By recognizing that there is some base to ourselves below the threshold of emotion we find purpose completely subtle -- the space that emotion writes itself on, the very presence of our being. We must be cognizant of our very being, consciously aware that we exist. In the midst of intensity we become what we most identify with.
This is the danger of identifying with hatred because we become hate. In truth, when we identify with any emotion, we become that emotion. It begins to calcify and we are that. It is the reason that as we go deeper in practice we focus on love, joy, and gratitude. These emotional experiences are higher up the scale of light and easier to let go of. The heavy emotions, hatred, depression, fear are all very challenging and dense -- like a neutron star with a gravitational pull to match.
To lose our center is to be convinced of the world of us versus them. It is a world of vulnerability and conflict. To stay present to this very moment is to be at peace. To hold the center is to be right here, right now.