The following is a summary of a teaching I gave at Dinh Quang Buddhist Temple in response to the question of how to sustain our daily practice during the pandemic.
The first part of the practice is just this: giving a compassionate, honest look at what we’re actually experiencing. A pandemic is something that brings us into contact with suffering, especially kinds of suffering we often avoid as a culture. And we also experience this suffering more frequently and intensely, and that’s something that deserves our kind attention. In Thich Nhat Hanh’s metaphor, we should be taking care of our suffering like we would a little baby.