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We need you to occupy the world that you are in.

We need you to figure out how to be present in that world. We need you to do the inner work necessary so that you can participate in that world with kindness, compassion and generosity. We need you to learn how to use resistance, hesitation and fear as a call to be deeply present in a world of chaos.

That world doesn't need to be big. It doesn't need to be the whole world. Matter of fact, it shouldn't be the whole world and it can't be the whole world. It is best to start small, the smaller the better.

Occupy your home with presence and contribute generously to the well-being and happiness of your family or friends. If your home is too big of a space and there is too much going on, choose one relationship to occupy with full presence and kindness, maybe with a teacher or partner. If that is too big of a space, choose to occupy yourself with presence and kindness. Learn to sit on your own meditation seat with honesty, kindness and openness. Learn to be understanding and receptive to your own suffering and discontentment.

When you learn to occupy your smallest world with compassion, kindness and generosity, gradually that world will start to expand and widen. You'll step into a larger world having already established a ground of presence. Gradually, walls will fall, doors will open and your vision will expand.

This applies to your relationships and your work. When you learn to be open and honest with yourself, you can be understanding and receptive to others. When we can be fully present and engaged with our friends and family, we can carry that presence into our communities when dealing with strangers. Gradually, we can learn to work with difficult situations and people who are creating problems for us along the way.

If you cannot handle your present environment, assuming a larger space will not make things easier or better. When you can learn to fully occupy your present space, your world will naturally widen and you will see where you can contribute to that larger world.

It all starts with presence. Learn to occupy the smallest space with presence and generosity. That probably means starting with your meditation cushion. As your practice deepens and you gain confidence, you will naturally be more present and be able to participate fully in the world at large.

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