I love to help people but why do I have aversion also?

May 16, 2022



Dear Venerable Robina, 


Thank you very much for your kind teaching last night. I hope you had a good evening and a good night’s sleep.


I work as a psychotherapist and have always had a strong impulse to help people. I tend to feel overly responsible though and find myself being easily exhausted, mentally but also physically, getting migraines and being worn out. Especially then I struggle with my work and patients, have a great longing for my own space and quiet, and a lot of aversion towards my work and any people wanting something from me. It doesn’t come out in words, I keep it within myself, but I tend to for example postpone answering messages. And most of all my mind gets annoyed and irritated and I really don’t feel good with this anger and aversion in my mind. I’d be very grateful if you had some advice on how to deal with the aversion and the situation. 


Thank you very much. 

Much love to you 

A xx



Happy to hear from you, A!


When we understand clearly the Buddhist model of the mind, we’ll know that the main reason we suffer, get exhausted, sick and the rest is 1. because of past karma and 2. because of our delusioxns.


Moment by moment we are driven by our attachment — it’s so subtle, so pervasive, so very hard to see; we just take it for granted. Mainly it craves for everything to be nice; it can’t stand problems.


So there you are with your compassion and kindness, your wish to help others — marvelous! That’s virtue! — but it’s dragged down by, polluted by, limited by your attachment. So the moment attachment meets what it doesn’t want, the unnice things, specifically the other people’s problems, aversion arises. And then there’s the wish to make it all go away, so it causes you to overly take responsibility, to take it upon yourself, as if it’s your job to fix it all. 


Do you recognize this process?


In other words, we don’t suffer because of other people’s problems; we suffer because of our attachment to having everything nice and then the aversion when it doesn’t get it.


Compassion can never cause us suffering. It’s a virtue.


That’s the analysis. Something like that! 


Of course, it’s totally appropriate to take time for rest, to give yourself space. But the crucial thing is the mind.


What do you think?






Dear Venerable Robina, 


I hope my email finds you well. Thank you so much for your kind words and your spot-on analysis. This is exactly what happens. It helps me very much to realise, that – of course – it is attachment wanting the situation to be nice, which is behind my taking responsibility and exhausting myself. I had missed that point. 


I think it does help me knowing and being aware of this to be able to step back and hold the situation so to speak in kind awareness with all the triggered emotions and impulses. I would very much like to do one further step to calm my own emotions but most of all do something compassionate for the other person without engaging too much and getting sucked up in the same circle again. 


I feel very close to Tara and try to weave in bits into my practice, especially the prayer “A Song of Longing to Tara the Infallible” by Lama Lobsang Tenpey Gyaltsen, translated by Lama Yeshe.


So, would it be okay to then, as a further step in trying situations, call upon Tara for help? And if so, is there a specific way to do that?


Thank you so much for your support and guidance. 


I am sending you much love, have a good day and evening. 




For sure, dearest A! Rely on Mother Tara from the bottom of your heart!


Much love,



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