There is something that is becoming painfully obvious to me on this path of contemplation. It seems that all past conditioning was in pursuit of an illusive sense of security and happiness. In contemplation these old, habitual ways of being are falling away and it seems to mean for me becoming increasingly vulnerable to the pain and suffering of the world. This realization of truth in the past was denied or ignored as a result of its ability to obstruct the pursuit of happiness. In those earlier days I would have been totally unprepared and possibly crushed by the awareness of such suffering. These days I am more ready to relinquish the security of a sleepwalking existence and to accept what may come from my exposure to the world’s suffering. There is something more that the realization of vulnerability and death brings to us on the path in terms of transcendence. Is this the freedom from suffering that the Buddha talked about? Is it realized in this way?