Emotions are a subjective way of experiencing energy flows in the energy body. Water element is dominant on this layer (kosha), so they flow in and out, like waves on the seashore. Deeper, we experience them like waves in the ocean.
Western culture doesn’t teach good energy hygiene. We often grow up learning to repress some emotions rather than learning healthy forms of expression. “Real men don’t cry,” for example. Or “anger isn’t proper for a woman.” We build a backlog of unresolved experiences, another flavour of karma.
For some, we live in our mind, oblivious to how we feel or our energy state. This just feels safer or more comfortable. Others are more emotionally available. Yet when we’re identified with the ego, we treat this content as part of who we are. We say “I AM sad” rather than “I feel sad.” This leads to misery as we’re tossed about by passing waves.
But if we regularly transcend the mind and emotions (samadhi) through things like an effortless meditation, and learn how to be with emotions in healthy ways, we experience and resolve that backlog. The fog on the water lifts and our quality of life improves. Emotions flow in and out of experience with no lasting impressions.
As that fog lifts, the air element also becomes more clear, although many have a protective crust on the heart and fine feelings. With a stable grounding in being, the heart can break open, and feelings like universal love, compassion, and unfettered gratitude can emerge.
Deeper still, the bliss body can leak through and an inner pleasantness becomes our ongoing backdrop, whatever waves are passing on the surface.
Our former selves would find the new daily experience incomprehensible. I can’t overemphasize the richness this brings. However, I fully appreciate this is a major undertaking that takes a good while. We have to relearn how to be with life and our emotions. We have to work through the backlog. But every step of progress brings us closer to bliss, closer to our true nature, closer to home. Yum!