Like your breath, your essential goodness is always with you. To find it, you have to look for it. That impulse that inspires you to look for your goodness is it in action. Basic goodness is our innate inclination to experience peace and happiness and to relieve suffering. It is one of our core qualities. It manifests itself in everything we do as we live our lives trying to experience pleasure and avoid pain. However, when pain and suffering finds us, despite efforts to enjoy ourselves, we lose sight of our good nature and think all kinds of confusing things about ourselves. When we find ourselves feeling bad about who or what we are, it is a good time practice finding our goodness again.
Knowing that your goodness is there is not the same as finding it. Finding it involves feeling it. It involves meeting yourself right where you are. It is dropping all expectations of what you should be or could be and feeling as you feel. Finding your goodness doesn’t even have to feel good. If you look into your suffering to find your goodness, it will feel like suffering, but the courageous act of changing your relationship to your suffering, induced by your good impulse to feel what you feel, without judgement, without blame, will help you feel your goodness. Know that your goodness is there, feel what you are feeling and breathe with it. Breathe with a sense of hope, a sense of kindness, a sense of understanding, a sense of wisdom, and you will find your goodness.
As you practice finding and experiencing your goodness, you will get used to it being there, stop doubting it and use it to create peace and happiness. When you come to know it in yourself, you will see it in others too. Our basic goodness doesn’t change from one person to the next. Our awareness changes, which dramatically alters how our goodness expresses itself. When we regularly practice finding goodness and holding it in our awareness, good things happen. Peace appears.