After all these years of meditation (30!), I keep catching my conditioned mind affirming for me that ease and wellbeing depend on external circumstances. Like, I might have to be in Italy enjoying a drink on a balcony. Not too sunny, please. And dear Lord, there must be no smokers nearby. Also, I'll need a lot of cash, because, you know, Italy. Shopping. Thank you. Yes, I think I could feel easy under those circumstances.
Or ones like them. I’m exaggerating about the Italy part; more often, my requirements are around the behavior of others: friends, family, and the people on the other side of the townhouse wall.
It's such a perfect recipe for dissatisfaction and misery. The very definition of suffering: If only this, if only that. Aaargh!
Lately I have been trying to remember Lord Nelson: “Never mind about maneuvers - just go straight at them.” Naturally, my Zen teacher says something quite similar.
So, do I want ease? If I can imagine feeling ease in Italy, I can imagine feeling ease.
If I can imagine feeling ease, I’m feeling ease.
And if I can feel ease, I can feel ease. It's really available anytime. I just have to remind myself.