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Buddhadharma : Spring 2008
spring 2008| 48 |buddhadharma This very mind is the root of all bondage, the root of all disaster. When the aorta is cut through, all the senses stop. For one who has understood and practiced this There is no dharma that is not included within it. This mind is the source of everything, and there- fore this mind is the source of all bondage and all disaster. It is this mind that becomes confused through failing to recognize its own nature, and thereafter becomes bound by mental afflictions. The recognition or absence of recognition of the nature of this mind is the deciding factor in whether this mind experiences nirvana (in the case of recog- nition) or samsara (in the absence of recognition). Here Karma Chakme gives an analogy. If you kill someone by cutting their aorta, all their senses stop when they die. In the same way, if you kill the whole process of ignorance by recognizing the mind’s nature—because ignorance is, so to speak, the life force of samsara—all suffering and mental affliction of samsara cease. All dharmas without exception are therefore included in the recognition and the cultivation of the recognition of the nature of your mind. That is the point of all dharma. There is not a hairsbreadth of anything to be meditated on in this. But it is enough to look at the essence without distraction, Without hope for good and fear of the bad, Without thinking what it is or what it isn’t. Whether still or in movement, whether clear or unclear, Whatever arises, look fixedly at its essence. There is no object of meditation because your mind is simply experiencing itself just as it is, in the present moment. It is sufficient here to look at the nature of your mind without distraction. The words look fixedly at are by nature dualistic language, and are misleading in the sense that the mind that is looked at is not something other than the mind that is looking. While doing this, it is unnecessary to hope that things will go well and that you will recognize your mind’s nature, or to fear that things will go poorly and you that will become distracted or lose the rec- ognition. It is unnecessary to think, “Is this it, or is this not it?” It does not matter whether your mind is still or moving. If it is still, it is not going to stay still forever, so it shouldn’t matter anyway. It does not even matter whether your mind is particularly lucid in that moment or for that day. Regardless of what- ever is happening in your mind, simply look with an intense or glaring awareness at the nature of what- ever arises. The term vivid means “one-pointedly without distraction.” This means not allowing the distraction of thoughts to divert you from looking at the nature. That itself is the main practice here. When you are meditating in this way in the main practice, If you are resting blissfully and unwaveringly, that is “stillness.” If you are not resting, but running into the ten directions, that is “movement.” Being aware of whatever appears, whether stillness or movement, that is “awareness.” While doing this, different things can happen. Sometimes when looking at the nature of your mind, your mind does not move; it stays put, evenly, peacefully at rest. That is stillness. At other times it wanders all over the place. That is movement. There is also the faculty of awareness, the recogni- tion of whether the mind is still or moving. Though they appear to be different they are one in essence. Stillness is dharmakaya, movement is nirmanakaya, Awareness is sambhogakaya, and their inseparability is the svabhavikakaya. They are the seed or cause for the accomplishment of the three kayas. (Facing page) Avalokiteshvara – Jinasagara (Ocean of Conquerors) Eastern Tibet, 1800 – 1899 (iTemno.790)ColleCTionofRubinmuseumofART(ACC.#P1998.30.3)