Obstacles Are The Path.
The path of meditation is a path that co-emerges with the path of suffering. This is why a study of the first two noble truths are so important. Not a conceptual study, but a realistic examination of our own lives. We must conduct a fearless and thorough investigation into our own suffering, and the causes and conditions that give rise to our dissatisfaction. It is the discovery of our neurosis, and our willingness to relate with it- to see its pattern- that enables us to walk the spiritual path.
Meditation is essentially walking backwards down the path that gives rise to suffering. Therefore, it is our discontentment, our own neurotic energy, that serves as the material we have to work with in meditation. So, the situations we generally refer to as hardships or obstacles are in fact the texture of the path.
H.H. the Dalai Lama has said, "If you want to cultivate generosity you cannot view a beggar as an obstacle." Well, in the same way an obnoxious co-worker is not a hindrance to the practice of patience, but an opportunity to discover your natural capacity to be patient. Furthermore, an attachment to a painful relationship or unhealthy situation is not preventing you from learning how to let go. This attachment is an invitation to let go.
Insanity is sanity... just misunderstood. Basically, insanity is when thought becomes divorced from reality on the pretense of a false assumption. In relating to our neurotic energy, to our insanity, we see it for what it is, and insight resolves all confusion. This is the restoration of sanity.
Before we can ever hope to relate with our insanity we have to be willing to accept our neurotic tendencies. That is, we have to quit blaming our problems on others. We have to quit blaming our insanity on the past. We also have to stop rejecting ourselves, or saying, "This is silly. I shouldn't be angry." You are angry. So, stop and listen. Observe. This is the path and it starts right now. It doesn't matter if right now is filled with a pristine awareness of life's grandeur, or neurotically preoccupied with trying to manipulate someone into fulfilling some selfish need.
Right now is all we have to work with, and trying to work with anything else is a game...
Take all obstacles to the path!