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Buddhadharma : Summer 2015
summer 2 0 1 5 buddhadharma: the practitioner’s quarterly 33 The practices of the night lead us to this uni- fied field and awaken us to the universality of the human condition. For you see, when you go to sleep you’re actually going to meet me, and every other sentient being on this planet, at this deepest possible level. We’re going to sleep together and rest in the same luxurious bed of the primal mind. Our job, when we arise each morning, is not to forget this nightly reunion. Rumi put it this way: Out beyond ideas of wrong-doing and right-doing there is a field. I’ll meet you there. When the soul lies down in that grass, the world is too full to talk about. Ideas, language, even the phrase each other doesn’t make any sense. So the next time you see me, or anyone else, remember that we’ve met before. Remember that at this most fundamental level of being, we’re still together. It’s time to wake up to that truth. uNifYiNG humaNitY Sleep is a unifying factor of humanity. Everybody sleeps and dreams. This biological camaraderie is just the outer level of a deeper spiritual union and points to one of the greatest benefits of the night- time yogas: their ability to yoke us to all sentient beings. When we fall asleep, we drop below the dualistic ego, where difference is synonymous with division, and discrimination, strife, and warfare are sparked by the illusion of separateness. We temporarily disconnect from the superficial layers of mind and connect to our shared awakened nature—our col- lective buddhanature. As dream researchers Jayne Gackenbach and Harry Hunt assert, “The further down the rabbit hole you go, the more collective the experience becomes.” We may not be awake to it yet, but this is where we go every single night. At this ground zero of being, ignorance is replaced with insight, multiplic- ity is supplanted by unity, and duality melts back into nonduality. So at our core, below any surface language, race, color, or creed, we are absolutely all the same. When we fall asleep, we drop below the dualistic ego. We temporarily disconnect from the superficial layers of mind and connect to our shared awakened nature—our collective buddhanature. PHOTO | marta greber