Meet everything with awareness.
3. Using Adversity (11-15)
The meaning of this saying is clear as soon as we realize it is in the section called Using Adversity. The meaning of this saying is actually a common theme in the Lojong slogans. A common pitfall is to take an adverse event as a only a setback. It may be a setback, but it is also an opportunity for increased awareness. Often these (so called) adverse events present the best opportunities to develop awareness.
All that occurs is simply what happened, however, we have a tendency to label things as either an adverse event or an advantageous event; or simply labeled either good or bad. Upon only casual inspection we can see that whatever occurs is actually neither good nor bad, but it just is what happened.
Lojong 11 suggests that "adversity" may be a particularly good opportunity to develop awareness, but even those things we label as fortunate or advantageous are also great opportunities for development. And if we take this Lojong to heart we will realize that everything is an opportunity to develop awareness.
Mindfulness is "to be present in this moment". Proper application of meditation to each moment is not contrary to being fully present, but is simply another way to describe being present.
How does one reach a place of equanimity, in which events are neither good nor bad? It is through the process of applying this Lojong: Whatever you encounter, immediately apply it to meditation.
This morning it was raining, so a bunch of leaves fell on my car. I reached over the car to remove them and got a grease spot on my khaki pants. My meditation was similar to the saying of Master Oogway (Kung Fu Panda, 2008), "One often meets his destiny on the path he takes to avoid it."
Thinking of Master Oogway reminded me of another favorite:
Shifu: Master! I have... it's very bad news!
Oogway: Ah, Shifu. There is just news. There is no good or bad.
Shifu: Master, your vision. Your vision was right! Tai-Lung has broken out of prison! He's on his way!
Oogway: That IS bad news.