Emptiness and Protecting Our Love

Part 1 Experience in mind training such as putting into practice the aphorisms of the seven points made you more capable and qualified to enter into the study of the nature of emptiness. Then the powerful teachings on lack of inherent existence and the wonderful simplicity of the explanation of emptiness can cause a sudden shift inside that is a sign of meaningful changes. The preparation and cogitation accomplished on the deep inquiry and analysis of the twenty emptinesses of Chandrakirti also gives you permission to enter into cultivated inner dynamics described in the treatise and commentary. Long-time, skillful meditators will deliberately enter into the state without foundation three or four times a day in order to prepare their mind for the actual transformation event.

For helper beings such as learner bodhisattvas, in their quest for perfection in their own being by being of benefit to others, rest their minds in a careful place away from the confusion of the sense bases of the meditator in order to be of most benefit. Since the meditator is in active transition, there is cleansing and purification of clutter and dust accumulated that inner bodhisattva does not need to experience. However, as soon as the meditator is capable, he or she is expected to be meditating in the higher-level practice, accomplishing purifications and moving into a place without foundation without being overly fascinated with it. These step-by-step processes will eventually recreate the meditator into someone who is capable or receiving high teachings on the actual interior without the confusion of the ordinary senses.

In that way, I hope this commentary on Chandrakirti's Twenty Emptiness will be a valuable resource for you to review and put into practice. Even if you should be in conversation with someone who has been Buddhist for 20 or 30 years, do not feel that you do not have the correct information or that something was missing in the explanation. Many believe that the study of emptiness is far more complicated than is actually is. It is hoped, that by the explanations given, you will have what you need to be able to discuss these concepts intelligently with anyone. You are capable of understanding and applying your strong mental force against the disfigurements of this world and feel victorious.

Those who are adept in this process always feel that this world is not so complicated, and they do not enter into the suffering dynamics that ordinary people do. Whether you are sick or well, whether good luck is coming or bad luck is coming, whether you are getting what you want or you are not getting what you want; there should be no reason that you mind should ever be disturbed again. Not only is this a sign of putting mind training into practice, but it is also a sign of having the view that understands that this state without foundation is the careful resting place of the mind. One reason it is called emptiness is because it is devoid of the very characteristics that cause ordinary human mind and human consciousness suffering. It is a dispersal of ordinary mind.

However, for those entering this state and are familiar with this resting place, it is simply an anteroom to a more careful way of being. This washing away of all perceptions acts like a membrane that holds ordinary beings away from interacting with enlightened society with the insanity of ordinary mind. However, if one has damaged this membrane between their outer and inner minds by drugs, machines now built to bypass this membrane such as automatic meditation devices or misusing the mind, they literally could be accessing what they should not know, do not have permission to know and are not prepared to know yet.

The information on compassion of the wisdom Bodhisattvas gives you tools that should be integrated into practice so that it produces the powerful transformative effect. One important point that should be remembered is do not disturb your own mind and further do not distract inner process from preparation for transformation. Over a very, very long time, you have become so accustomed to annoying yourself it feels normal and that needs to change.

Life is like scents wafting on the breeze. In the countryside you can smell the cows, and then a moment later the breeze shifts and you can no longer smell the cows and now it smells like hay. Soon your attention notices that from over there comes the smell of fresh bread. In that way, your attention is drawn to a continuous circulation of different kinds of energies. If we tried to prevent smelling the cow by doing something to the cow or retard the hay's ability to produce an odor, we would be like ordinary people who only want to experience nice smells or happiness. The demands ordinary people place on God and higher being to fix everything that bothers them is not an effective use of spiritual connections. The general duty of the inner wisdom bodhisattva is facilitating in many different ways the return to alignment with perfection.

So, we need to take responsibility and mature by reducing the delusions and grasping after ephemeral happiness. Wisdom, emptiness and the nature of the bodhisattvas open up pathways to higher development and higher training toward perfection. We need to strengthen our spiritual muscles, discrimination, and understanding of the larger process toward transformation without entering fantasy of too much evanescent mental wanderings. Stabilized in knowledge of how things actually exist should cause us to feel empowered to deal with difficulties that act as real obstacles to development and not waste our lives in trying to fix what is so ephemeral such as the stench of cows and hay wafting across the fields. As we take more personal responsibility for caring about what is really important, we begin to come alive in higher development.

Understanding and meditating on the dynamics of love as well as the bestowal of precious human life makes us capable of the unusual attitude brought to spiritual development, deriving pleasure from not knowing. This love dynamic that we feel toward study, our buddhist practice and even love toward our prayer beads helps our progress. This ability to fall in love with meditation, the Buddha, and practice has been given to you in lieu of the correct inner sense of fully developed compassion-love of the mature Bodhisattva. This is a correct transitional stage of development because your potential for love is tremendous.

For young people, the discovery of the potential for love and care in the form of an actual physical component almost takes away their ability to see. The strong inward gaze of the physiological interest or obsession as well as nervous system arousal, combined with a feeling that every part of the body is alive with this gripping wanting to know, is directed toward efforts to possess the object of that love.

This powerful, driving force of obsession and curiosity looking at itself is also a tremendous source of creativity, art, and poetry. Many important elements of human life are established in this bestowal of ability to love in its many forms, binding others to yourself as part of your human identity. There is also the potential of damaging your ability to love. Some will substitute other damaged emotions for a kind of clear human potential for love. Denying themselves the preparations for more mature and then higher love, some develop instead a kind of mistrust and distrust. If it is not healed, it turns to fear, and then an unknown cascade of negative emotions can arise, damaging further the precious human life possibilities for preparation for enlightenment.

Disappointments in love should not be allowed to damage your ability to love, and yet we feel that that is the natural reaction and that we should be very careful with everyone because we have been disappointed. Our object has not accepted us as subject, and we feel pain and disappointment while continuing to love after the object has departed. This needs to be healed by authentic practice with valid love objects such as the Buddha, the teachings toward perfection and the body of enlightened companions who have been through what you have and are healed and ready to assist you. To be continued….

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