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Saturday, May 9, 2009

Cultivating New Attitudes (part four)

Traditional Buddhism creates a powerful antidote to help you discover how you are actually alive. The basis for the Mahayana, the path of altruistic compassion teaches that human life needs to have another object other than yourself. By contrast, the suffering ordinary life with the innate base illogical view, is very much dependent upon looking at yourself!

The antidote is the Mahayana view of giving you a change of perceptions to cultivate while encouraging you toward the spontaneous accomplishment of beneficial intention. Perhaps you have read about the bodhisattvas, compassion and heroes, but it will still not touch you until you understand that you are not alive in the way you think you are. Many work hard at being a bodhisattva when it is the actual being's transformation and energetic healing into another form in its evolutionary journey that they need to facilitate instead.

The Mahayana or Greater Vehicle asks us to consider caring for all sentient beings as a valid alternative to trying to gain quality feelings as a goal. All living beings are like ourselves, trying to be happy. Since we have been working on ourselves for a very long time, and still not grasping the happiness we seek, the universal responsibility of ultimate kindness helps us think to benefit others.

Our human life needs to have another object other than ourselves and this needs to be an object that is a valid expression of reality. Almost everyone has experienced removing attachment for themselves and projected it on to another in an intimate relationship and become attached to another person as the object. Very soon, in most cases they find this dynamic is not as wonderful as they had hoped it was going to be and they begin to find unhappiness in their very object of happiness. So, it must be a valid expression of reality in order to be the correct object, such as deity, Buddhas and bodhisattvas or all sentient beings.

Traditional Buddhism has antidotes to help us learn how we are actually alive. We say, from the very beginning of the Path to enlightenment that suffering exists. It exists in manifest forms, it exists in subtler forms, and it exists on the mental level. It also exists on a subtle level connected to an inner perception of momentary change and the suffering of the base illogical view.

The basis of the Mahayana altruism is that suffering exists. You are feeling suffering, and all living beings are feeling suffering as well because the object of their attention is also themselves. The developed stage of this unnecessary attention is called self-cherishing. Not only do living beings stare at themselves, but they also take themselves as the inner object of their attention making their own needs vastly more important than the extreme needs of others. This self-cherishing causes them to take all kinds of wrong actions, for example, wanting to feel happy and inflicting harm on others so that they do not get in the way of that happiness.

Many terrible things have occurred in the human realm due to self-cherishing. On a world level, countries go to war taking over another country because they want to possess the land. The motivation might be to have more land but it is fueled by self-cherishing, which harms others and harms themselves in the future. So, we see that self-cherishing does not end at the personal or interpersonal level.

The reason why the Mahayana teaches to shift attention to all sentient beings is to give you something hold onto while everything is shifting and changing in preparation for transformation. You have to have something to hang onto while all of these changes are happening. Inappropriate feelings such as craving happiness and satisfaction for yourself and inappropriate dialogues with yourself in the form of confused and unaligned inner energies are being washed away or purified. You hang onto the Mahayana and as you practice, self-cherishing becomes much reduced.

We have worked for our own benefit for a very long time and not received the desired result of feeling good. If we work for the benefit of others, we might benefit them and ourselves as well. The teachings of Buddhism encourage us at each stage of development. We are capable of transformation because we are human beings with human minds, and these techniques will definitely bring a good result because they have worked for myriad beings already!

Because the need is so great, the best method among all transitional methods is to make the transformation to the awakened state as soon as possible so that we can be on the healing side and not on the suffering side. It is possible to choose that and create the necessary changes in perceptions to support that decision. Some days, we might hear the correct way to understand, and other days we hear the illogical view. Practitioners often wonder, “Well, who am I? Why is it some days I have such extraordinary abilities, and other days, I might as well go sit among the bums and beggars!“

Advanced practitioners will criticize themselves also, putting pressure on themselves and criticize their negative and illogical view. A nice, peaceful meditator, sitting on their meditation cushion saying to their own delusions, "Shut up! I am not going to listen to that anymore! I am not going to be like that anymore!”

Changes can happen quickly or over a great length of time, depending upon practice done in previous lives. However, once you decide you are going to be on the healing side and no longer are interested in life as an ordinary suffering being, this will cause you to stop looking at yourself. Suffering soon stops and you become transformed easily because you are not struggling with fantasy. You will soon become an enlightened being of the bodhisattva class, the most beneficial class of beings in the entire universe. You will attain the learning path, and become part of that society of bodhisattvas.

Truly, when you are directly addressing the innate view and healing occurs, I hope you will laugh. That is because when you wake up, what holds you into ordinary being is unsnapped, and you are going to really laugh. Your actual being, the real you inside will rejoice. What will happen when the real you inside becomes a bodhisattva? What kind of feelings will you have then? Do not answer in words, feel it. What will it feel like to have the feelings of a bodhisattva?

The end

Friday, May 8, 2009

Cultivating New Attitudes (Part three)

These examples from part two such as sleep, daydreaming and lost in rummaging through past memories you are already familiar. These show that your awareness could be either elsewhere or little aware while the world and activities are going on around you. However, this becomes a habitual method to hold your energy by perceiving your present moment as either in the future or in the past. I gave a teaching focusing on this subject called Cultivating Joy. It is very interesting and also has some meditations to help find the present moment.

Some people use body awareness meditations or techniques in order to control or reduce fascination with mental events that prevent them from experiencing the feeling of being present. There are many body calming or mind calming meditations that will also help us to become more balanced or remain centered. The mind can then find some temporary rest and be aware without dwelling in the past or the future.

Even with techniques to control your reactive behaviors, high quality feelings such as happiness or respect might not be coming and instead something might be preventing you from feeling that. Some say that the behavior of other people, perhaps even members of their family prevents their happiness. That could be so. The behavior of others certainly does affect how we feel, however, if it was really true, it would be true in all cases. Has there ever been a person who lived in a difficult circumstance that experienced happiness in spite of that? Yes, there are many examples of that, so it means that their perception, under identical circumstances, produced a different feeling. So, the actual event for that person was not occurring "out there," no matter how difficult it was, without denying that things out there can be difficult. The actual event for the individual happens in the perceptions that are translating what is happening. Because of the unique view you hold, events and activities feed and validate your perceptions by perceiving it slightly or vastly differently than others.

So, there is something about your current perceptions that is preventing you from experiencing, or feeling what you want to feel. For example, everyone wants to feel good. Everyone wants to feel happy. Of course, everyone wants to feel satisfied, respected, and content in relationships, work, self worth, and love. There could be a larger number of quality important feelings that we wish to be experiencing. We have discussed briefly some of the uncomfortable stretching of awareness toward the past and future that leave the present moment debilitated. These sad states of mind that we are forced to wear as a result of dysfunctional perceptions as well as trusting the base illogical view cause us to suffer needlessly.

People say that Buddhism only talks about suffering, that is all they want to talk about, suffer, suffer, suffer! We are actually not interested in suffering. The Buddhist path talks about the dharma, which is the healing of the problem that has become uncovered, examined, and understood. In this case, we understand that there is something wrong in the way we search for feeling happiness.

Now, what is the model for a fresh outlook? The inner-based view of awakened beings reveals that we are not alive in the way we think we are. We are not even the one that is alive. There is another kind of living being alive on another level of reality, and that is the real one! We are not the real one. This real alive one is not a human being. That living being is an energy-electrical being, and is on an evolutionary journey to perfection that is calling it in a special language that it is responding to by seeking growth and becoming capable of entering perfection. In its present process, it has been given an ability to emanate into the perceptual human realm where it lives a quasi life to increase its value and strength for the journey. We are the result of that process as emanations. This real being does not belong to the illusory person. It does not belong to us. The one we think we are belongs to it.

So, the question becomes, after we have been seeking happiness, seeking satisfaction, respect, control, and all of the other issues that plague us, the actual questions has not been addressed yet. In reality, if we are not alive in the way we believe we are, and not even the one who is alive, no wonder it has been so hard to find perfection here! So, what is it that the real one, what I call your actual being, needs and wants? Those unmet needs for transformation expressed in the human realm as the many unhappy states of mind is the basis for our dissatisfaction. It is thwarted and unable to express its needs because you continue to believe that you are the primary reason you are alive. To be continued…

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Cultivating New Attitudes (part two)

Yesterday there was much discussion about what feelings we wanted to be experiencing. Instead of having the feelings that you want, you have to endure feelings that are something else, not pleasant or not to your liking. However, we note here that the “something else” that you receive in place of what you want, is not necessarily the opposite of the pleasant you desire to feel. For example, you could answer that question of not feeling happy without saying or meaning “I feel unhappy””. Just because you are not happy or more specifically, not experiencing the feeling of happiness, does not mean that you are unhappy.

Using informal unexamined logic; most people assume that if something is true, its opposite is false. If you are not this, then you are definitely its opposite. It might be the case where you are simply not experiencing happiness, and rather than experiencing unhappiness; you might feel like you are under some kind of anesthetic. In fact, when we talk about feelings, often people find themselves suffering because they are incapable of feeling.

The structure for a balanced outlook is complex. We can be shaken from balance, where natural happiness and peace are normal easily by inner and outer events including natural evolutionary awakening. In a deep place inside, everyone who is not awakened is spontaneously using a base illogical view regarding how they perceive they are alive from which extends many other wrong perceptions that produce suffering. In Buddhism, we call this fundamental illogic, your innate view. That is why the transformation into the enlightened state in your interior creates such a tremendous change. That programming of the innate inner view is gone. The continuous infusion of the illogical view dream state and all of its ramifications in perception is destroyed at the time of awakening.

Until that awakening, the perceptions, feelings, and resulting emotions are important indications of success as a human being. Experiencing high quality feelings becomes a goal for many seeking gratification of desires, not of material objects but now of positive emotions. Therefore, it becomes vitally important to gain skill and understanding in what prevents the quality feelings from being experienced. What prevents some from feeling love toward others becomes mixed with a fear that others are going to find out that they do not feel that genuine love. Trying to love, but not feeling love, but also being afraid that others will find that out can act as a further obstacle to producing that love. So, what else prevents you from feeling? What prevents you from feeling happy? What prevents you from feeling respected?

Some say there is a model somewhere out there, let us say of happy and its feeling or sensations of well-being. Someday we will have to discuss philosophical universals a bit more and the issues raised by Buddhists regarding universals. That is an interesting philosophical problem with universals, but let us just suppose for our informal logical discussion here that there is a model of happy out there, which is like a universal standard. You might have expectations of how you well you match that model of happy.

What prevents you from feeling satisfied with life? Perhaps the punishing distorted view of not seeing things as they are justifies and holds unhappy states of mind. However, if we see beneath the intricacies there is an important dynamic that prevents you from feeling by not allowing you to be here in the present moment. Yes, we see your body, yes we can hear your voice, but where are you? You are not here. You are not centered here in the present moment. The human mind has a very interesting permutation where you can be in your physical body right here, and your mind is either in the future or in the past.

Very often, when people live too much in the past reviewing memories and experiences as the method to understand their world and their place in it, they are never actually alive in the present moment. They are not connecting with the energy of the world and because they are not aligned with their energy to the world around them, they often say that they cannot feel anything.

Now, I know it is not easy to understand how someone could be physically present, but not actually here in their awareness. However, the dream and sleep states are examples of awareness that has gone somewhere else. When you are asleep, the you is not here but still people can see your body, isn't that so? However, at that time, you have no awareness of body or hearing, depending upon the depth of your sleep.

A partial departure would be like someone who is daydreaming. They can hear you, their eyes may be open, and yet their awareness is nowhere near that place, is that so? You can talk to them, and they may not hear you, or they may hear you and answer in a very dream-like state, and suddenly, they shake themselves, and say, "Oh, I must have been daydreaming." Like that, there are degrees and variations of physical presence and lack of awareness presence. Living in the past and too much fear for the future strains awareness and causes lack of orientation, anger, frustration and stated even more simply, lack of alignment with the energy of the world.

There is a famous story about one of the earlier Dalai Lamas; I will say the fifth Dalai Lama, a long time ago. One famous realized yogi of Tibet came to visit him. He was ushered into his presence, and this yogi began to chastise the Dalai Lama to the surprise of others. "You pretend to be here! You pretend to be right here in front of me, but actually you are down in the market buying curtains." The Dalai Lama erupted into laughter and said, "Exactly so. You are exactly right. I was not present." To be continued…

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Cultivating New Attitudes (part one)

I taught on wisdom in general recently, and we established many different terms regarding this wisdom word that is thrown about so casually. You know, you can probably buy wisdom tea, and perhaps it comes in little organic bags; wisdom tea or wisdom soap. I bet someone makes wisdom soap. You could also find a cotton shirt made of wisdom cotton. So, if you attach the word wisdom to anything, there will be a certain number of people who will rush out and buy it! I am just joking. That is not exactly true, but perhaps.

Now we take time so that we can use established methods by which students or you and I can dialogue regarding different kinds of wisdom so that we mutually understand what valuation we are applying. An important aspect of this includes gaining confidence in your ability to manipulate Buddhist concepts. Just because various deeper or more subtle wisdoms exist, are described as important dynamics, and are acknowledged as the basis for transformative experience, it is not good to disrespect your own education.

A true path incorporates your experiences, your common sense, your thinking ability, and your logic as your present basis for growth. Meanwhile, we study in order to be able to understand that there are other kinds of wisdoms, including some very honorary degrees of wisdom, which are bestowed upon people both in the east and the west as skill levels. Your knowledge gained from that teaching might make you valuable and more confident in a discussion about the nature of reality and Buddhism. We continue to establish the meanings and discussion parameters of wisdom and inner healing so we can converse intelligently about deep subjects.

As part of that introduction to an education about establishing meanings, today we begin defining the idea of new attitudes. In order to understand that concept, however, that means there must be some attitude that you would like to possess that you do not now have. There would be no need to cultivate a new attitude or perception if you were already in full possession of all of the careful attitudes that you always wanted to hold in your nature. Obviously, there would be no need to cultivate something that you already possessed as part of your working personality and inner attitudes. New perceptions or alternatively, new attitudes, have an energetic configuration associated with the perceptions that is called a feeling.

Any intelligent person would work at cultivating new attitudes toward psychological well-being and higher ethical standards their entire lifetime, isn't that so? Some western philosopher said, "An unexamined life is not worth living." We will attribute it to Thoreau because it would be like something he might say.

Your perceptions are not just something like an old-fashioned ticker tape machine. The perceptions are not shooting out this little dry piece of paper filled with punches that express data. There is an energetic process that occurs because your perceptions are moving that causes something else to happen and what is associated with that is called a feeling or state of mind. I do not think there is any way to separate perception from feeling. However, you cannot change your feeling, but you can change your perceptions. That gives us a broader spectrum, an objective lifted view, like taking a picture of your house from outer space in order to be able to work carefully with changes. This is done while an engorged active state of feelings is not present, as that tends to overwhelm careful changes we want to incorporate into our skillful nature.

So, what is it that you want that you are not feeling? What is it that you want to be feeling that you are not feeling? Perhaps you want to feel clearer or you want to feel more confidence, something that you are not able to generate with your present perceptions. Someone told me that they wanted to feel in control, however, to say in control, does not really grasp the problem. It is far too complex a dynamic. You know, this is very typical of western culture and people who have education, to try to rise to a complex dynamic to be able to describe what it is that they want, so much so, that they cannot separate the elements in order to work with them carefully. Instead, we need to look at subjective feelings that are more simple.

You want to feel better, you want to feel whole are also too complex to work. I choose happy. Excuse me; I am going to go stand at the back of the class because I am giving an answer that I thought would be first on your list. What is it that you want that you are not feeling? Happy. To me, it is very clean. Some other answers make me dizzy. What are you feeling without displaying complexities? Someone wants to feel natural. I like it. You want to feel natural, which is a little bit complex, but not so much. What are some other easy answers? Peaceful! There is something that I want that I am not feeling. I am not feeling peaceful. Perhaps you are not feeling safe. These are examples of possibilities. What about missing the feeling of being joyful and free or satisfied with life?

Many people suffer because they are not feeling loving toward everyone and at the same time fearful that others will find that out! We want to have a spontaneous feeling that is loving and that is genuine. We want to have compassion and love toward everyone but we also want to feel that compassion and love coming from ourselves toward others. You definitely want that feeling to be genuine before others find out that you do not possess that, because then they are not going to like you, and then you have other issues.

My last answer, but certainly not the least of choices of what we might miss feeling, would be not feeling respected. Now, these are some very common issues that are played like notes on a dysfunctional piano: Not happy, not satisfied with life, not loved, not respected, ba bum, ja bum, ja dee, da da, one after the other. To be continued…..

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Recipe for Enlightenment (part five)

For the benefit of the meditators development, energy needs to be transmuted into another kind of usable source of energy more suitable for the inner environment. Even the energy of high thinking and disciplined smooth, yogic energies, will have to be transmuted into another form in the interior in order to be used for the transformative event of enlightenment. What to say about the rough and unstable energies of a proud and angry meditator?

Aberrant energies will disrupt a careful recipe like someone stamping around the kitchen while there is a soufflé in the oven. We must be gentle with our minds so that we do not encourage rough thoughts that will invite their rowdy companions. These rough companions of rough thoughts, such as blame and shame, competitiveness, and more, will spoil the inner nutrition process because these elements begin to interact with each other very much like talking to each other, and the noise is terrible inside.

This is another piece of the careful meditation puzzle. When I say to my students, “You are talking to yourself,” this partly refers to how the perceptions are interacting with each other, drawing pseudo-spiritual sustenance from each other in ways that they feel justified to be angry. “This is wrong, and this should not be this way, and that person did this, and this person did that.” Experiencing this becomes uncomfortable and noisy inside without the conscious mind even becoming aware. When inner noise and inner rough dialogue are interacting in a certain inner location; it does not require very much for the actual inner teachings to be drowned out by this static.

Another issue that faces meditators in their practice is the equivalent of adding too much sugar or too much salt to food. That means, some people are so attracted to or craving happy states of mind they will find it difficult to gain realizations regarding the nature of suffering. Being afraid of death and dying themselves, they also do not want to think that anyone near or dear to them is going to die. They are very attracted to only the sweet ideas. "It is okay because nobody actually dies. Everyone lives forever, so this is good. I will meditate now."

However, they miss an important ingredient or dynamic they need that destroys a special kind of fantasy that holds them to the circling of births and deaths. The very thing that they fear and do not want to think about, they cover up with happy thoughts without examining their own mind and uprooting fear. The destruction of fantasy does not make you hard and severe, it makes you free. There is also a relationship between the destruction of fantasy and the reduction and eventual elimination of confused perceptions talking to each other.

Too much salt is the practitioner who becomes numb and dried out in another kind of meditational error. Some lose compassion perspective in their practice as they "get realistic" about the nature of suffering and the hardships of this world. They do not care about themselves, and in addition, they find it hard to understand other peoples' viewpoints and so, might lack compassion for others as well. They feel that they are hard-nosed practical about spiritual development and how to go about it. Very often, they are ones who can recite many scriptures. The problem is that they often cannot feel anything! The healing or remedy is to enter into genuine happiness of being alive and feel lucky again.

Now we need to place these ingredient states of mind prepared by cogitation meditation described in earlier columns, into a special way of saving so they can be recalled at the correct time. The receptacle of the inner process is prepared to receive the carefully gathered elements of inner work by the structure of the sadhana. The meditator who facilitates the meditation of the inner being with great care, the actual being, will receive signs of success. These might include extraordinary dreams and understandings of reality, as well as valuable insights into human problems. Getting along with others becomes enjoyable, and the meditator feels strong liking toward others. Quality meditators become inspired around others and equally enjoy solitude to listen to the inner process.

A well thought out recipe and careful preparation produces a result that is a delight to share with others. In the same way, the Great Ones of Buddhism have shared their recipe freely to anyone, isn't that so? You can sense this if you read between the lines in the teachings of Je Pabonkha Rinpoche and Je Tsongkhapa, for example, among others. Their delight and glee, "Ha ha, you think you know chocolate chips cookies? You just listen to this!" Je Pabonkha Rinpoche might have said, "You do not know chocolate chip cookies at all! If you try these chocolate chip cookies, you will be famous too!"

Even today, the perfume of the teachings is still being carried on the winds all around the world, yes? The blessed exhalations of the Great Ones that spoke the transformative teachings are still in the air that we breathe today. Did you know that? Even scientifically, they can prove it, like that…. So, I breathe in with special intention……
These are the exhalations of the teachings still alive in the air that we breathe….It almost makes me dizzy with happiness. Do try this meditation. Enjoy, I think I will go meditate and breathe for a while. The end.

Zum Wohle des Meditierenden Entwicklung, Energie muss in eine andere Art von nutzbaren Energiequelle besser geeignet für die innere Umwelt verwandelt werden. Auch die Energie der hohen Denken und diszipliniert glatt, yogische Energien, müssen in einer anderen Form in den Innenraum verwandelt werden, um für die transformative Veranstaltung der Aufklärung verwendet werden. Was Sie über die raue und instabilen Energien eines stolzen und wütend Meditierende sagen?

Abweichende Energien stören eine sorgfältige Rezeptur wie jemand, Stanzen in der Küche herum, während es ist ein Soufflé im Ofen. Wir müssen mit unserem Geist sanft, so dass wir nicht fördern grobe Gedanken, dass ihre Gefährten rowdy einlädt. Diese rauhen Gesellen der rauhen Gedanken, wie Schuld und Scham, Wettbewerbsfähigkeit und mehr, wird die innere Ernährung Prozess verderben, weil diese Elemente miteinander zu interagieren, wie sehr viel miteinander zu reden, und der Lärm im Inneren beginnen ist schrecklich.

Dies ist ein weiteres Stück des Puzzles sorgfältige Meditation. Wenn ich sage meinen Studenten, " Sie sind sich selbst reden, " Dies bezieht sich teilweise auf, wie die Wahrnehmungen mit einander interagieren, Zeichnung, pseudo-geistige Nahrung von einander in einer Weise, dass sie berechtigt fühlen, verärgert zu sein. " Das ist falsch, und dies sollte nicht so sein, und diese Person tat dies, und dieser Mensch war, dass .", Bei denen dieses ist unbequem und laut innen ohne das Bewußtsein überhaupt bemerken. Wenn inneren Lärm und groben inneren Dialog sind in eine gewisse innere Lage interagieren, es erfordert nicht sehr viel für den eigentlichen inneren Lehren, die von dieser statischen ertränkt werden.

Ein weiteres Problem, dass Meditierende Gesichter in ihrer Praxis ist das Äquivalent der Zugabe zu viel Zucker oder zu viel Salz zu Lebensmitteln. Das bedeutet, dass es einige Leute so glücklich oder Begierde Zustände des Geistes zog sie finden es schwierig, Erkenntnisse über die Natur des Leidens zu gewinnen. Angst vor Tod und Sterben selbst, sie will auch nicht zu denken, dass jemand in der Nähe oder ihnen lieb ist, zu sterben. Sie sind sehr süß, nur die Ideen angezogen. " Es ist okay, weil niemand wirklich stirbt. Jeder lebt für immer, so ist dies gut. Ich werde jetzt zu meditieren. "

Allerdings vermisse sie eine wichtige Zutat oder dynamischen sie brauchen, dass zerstört eine besondere Art von Phantasie, die sie hält sich an die kreisenden von Geburten und Todesfällen. Gerade das, dass sie Angst und will nicht darüber nachdenken, decken sie sich mit glücklichen Gedanken, ohne Prüfung ihres eigenen Geistes und Entwurzelung Angst. Die Zerstörung der Phantasie macht nicht hart und streng, macht es euch frei machen. Es gibt auch einen Zusammenhang zwischen der Zerstörung der Phantasie und der Verringerung und späteren Unterbindung der verworrenen Vorstellungen miteinander zu reden.

Zu viel Salz ist der Praktiker, der taub wird und in eine andere Form des meditativen Fehler getrocknet. Einige verlieren Mitgefühl Perspektive in ihrer Praxis, wie sie "" get realistisch "über die Natur des Leidens und der Entbehrungen dieser Welt. Es kümmert sie nicht über sich selbst und darüber hinaus, sie finden es schwer, anderen Völkern" Sichtweisen und so zu verstehen, könnten mangelnde Mitgefühl für andere als gut. Sie fühlen, dass sie hartgesottene praktischen Über spirituelle Entwicklung sind und wie man darüber. Sehr oft gehen, sind sie diejenigen, die viele Schriften rezitieren kann. Das Problem ist, dass sie oft kann nichts fühlen! Die Heilung oder zu beseitigen, ist in echt Glück, lebendig zu geben und das Gefühl wieder Glück.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Recipe for Enlightenment (Part four)

The Tibetan tradition is quite powerful and has trained countless practitioners how to become respectful enough to receive the extraordinary blessings that are features of the Vajrayana path to enlightenment. It is reported often that even those in training to become teachers and come from long and famous reincarnation lineages experience some anxiety when in the presence of their own teacher. I also in my before had this experience, when I was in my study time, with my knees shaking, and my heart pounding in the presence of my guru. Others have also said this, sometimes they cannot even speak. Sometimes, we felt like we wanted to run away but we did not! This actually is what happens when the lama is showing them reality from the inside and their inner mind is receiving guidance.

This is not baby Buddhism, we are not talking about baby food nutrition in this recipe for enlightenment! I have talked occasionally to students who have experienced something strong coming from inside themselves, and they have interpreted it as being something that is to be afraid of. Even the Great Ones, very often felt the strain of the difference between their state of mind and the correct state of mind being modeled by their lama without a word being spoken! It is so interesting. As I said in a previous column, this inappropriate fear is not a tool or any accurate guide to understand what is happening. It is not a protection device and we endured the inner touch of our guru by developing a special mental support of our faith and reliance.

We should feel that we are learning something important about the next stage of evolutionary development. However, that is not going to come on top of everything that you are and everything that you believe, all of your education, possessions, and all of your ideas. It will not be something added to that. There will be something that needs to be removed in order for you to move to the next stage of evolutionary development.

Like that, there are processes and energetic dynamics that you are holding now that you do not need anymore. When we feel a vibration inside, it should not become a cause for a cascade of emotions. In the yogic process and in the work that we need to do, we train ourselves to hold steady while inner meditation is going on. I hope you are not confused by thinking that meditation is the time when you just let everything go, and flow like a reed or seaweed with the underwater current, no. You are holding steady, maintaining an energetic integrity, which will support the inner meditation.

In that way, you will train your mind to be able to tolerate the touch of your own inner mind as that matures in meditation. Right now, most meditators do not know what it feels like to know themselves. Perhaps you cannot tolerate the touch of your own inner mind, which is why there are barriers, veils, and often a poor relationship between you and yourself.

Since it is likely that you do not know yourself yet, it might seem as if something unusual is happening in occasional meditations, however, you are probably okay! Especially if you have a close relationship with your lama who is guiding your progress. Please remember we are talking about inappropriate fear as described earlier. The unusual things that happen are the very things that are part of the changes on your way to enlightenment. There are very special, unusual, and extraordinary experiences that will happen! To be continued…

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Recipe for Enlightenment (part three)

We continue the discussion on cogitation meditation from yesterday. This meditation technique and energetic is like an enfoldment or unfolding of thinking. Rather than looking, thinking, adding more ideas to the thought, you are waiting in encouragement while this enfoldment is drawing forth elements that need to be viewed and understood. This ability only comes with steady practice so not much more needs to be said about this for now.

The cogitation meditation results are gathered into realizations. These minor breakthroughs are characterized by the arisal of a new state of mind or new thought patterns. These minor breakthroughs and new states of mind could also be attained by removal of a difficult state of mind or difficult dynamic. With that removal, a careful ingredient that was previously hidden from the meditator becomes exposed. Something you might have already developed in a previous time; this life or another life was hidden by another dynamic. For example, this becomes apparent when the removal of anger in the interior that is facilitated by the meditator uncovers some very nice dynamics such as a refreshed sense of caring for others.

In our wonderful recipe for enlightenment, some ingredient states of mind need to be fresh, fresh, fresh in the alive present moment, such as Bodhichitta, the altruistic mind. To only remember your good deeds done for others and enter that remembrance into the equation of the gathering of states of mind is to be meditating in a second-hand way. It is stale. It is not fresh. Bodhichitta must be in the alive present moment in order to be bodhichitta. The alive experience of high thinking altruism causes the meditator to become visible where life actually exists in the interior that can be experienced by the actual being.

A student once told me that the saying for beginners should be “You fake it 'til you make it.” For that to work you need get some idea of what altruism is, what it means to you, and remember how it feels to be caring for others. You then hold these ideas together for a while because it feels good. Then, you slowly add to that more memories of producing altruism in your mind. Then another an instance of altruism, and secure that by also remembering how good that felt. For example, thinking, "You know, I am a really good person. I have done many good things for people. Look at how well my children do in school. They have many friends. We have family picnics and I remember old aunt Martha, who is 82 years old, came up to me, and said 'You are so sweet, kind and dear to me,' and she is right, you know. Even when I go down the street, cats and dogs come up to me to be petted, they must sense that I am not going to hurt them."

You can spend a lot of time remembering these truly nice things,and if by remembering you can actually feel the alive in your present moment, this is good. The sooner you get the idea of combining the feeling of the present moment with even more altruistic thinking on a broader scale, that Ah Ha of the present moment is dramatic! The first time it happens could be so big that you might faint! With further development and practice, some practitioners might even lose consciousness when their mind and the alive touch in a concentration state called samadhi.

Now we understand that the earlier view of being a nice person was a transitional development toward a higher view of what compassion and altruism means. Even if you might have built a hospital wing, that is a lower altruism than the state being discussed. The alive state is here, right now, but when that comes together in a certain combination, just like finally getting the last wire on that electric plug, and this one has to be screwed in just so here, the connections are all careful. The alive begins to flow, and something happens energetically in you, and in your actual being, the real you inside. The inner light turns on in a special way, which makes your actual being inside visible to real life.

Part of the Buddhist teachings that have been in the West for a very long time and taught in the Orient, of course, is that this world is like a dream and that this world is illusory. However, it seems like when everything is going well, job is going well, relationships are going well and you have everything that you want, somehow the fact that life is illusory is not very interesting. However, wait for a short time, the weather will change, and you will experience disappointment, and suffering comes like a rat scratching and chewing inside the wall. When it changes, you will not get something that you want, and a relationship will not go the way that you want it to, and then you are ripe to hear that life is just a dream; it is just an illusion. Actually neither one of these positions is very careful but very real to the ordinary mind. I personally do not think it is very nice to use Buddhist practice to beat yourself and others up regarding the nature of reality depending upon which way the wind is blowing!

For the skillful meditator, while preparation of various states of mind are being held energetically within the deeper mind, certain ways that you act and react to stimuli must be dried up in order for the correct combination to arise. You know, there are certain kinds of cogitations that move from your outer awareness mind into an energetic kind of thinking that is thinking, but not thinking. This happens in your subtle minds, which are connected and stimulated by the thinking that you have been doing on the outside to a certain degree. These energetic states of mind, as they pass from your care, go into another form interior, and become another kind of thinking, only this time they are not held in the method of words or mental pictures. They are held energetically and the preparation at those levels must go on carefully in order for the actual state of mind to arrive.

While those states of mind are happening inside, you need to understand better that you have certain spontaneous methods consistently used to receive stimuli from subtler minds, or inner minds, coming toward you from the interior. You have unhappy, habitual patterns or filters and ways that you have reacted when these inner processes and inner thinking are happening. They move to your outer mind, and when higher thinking arrives, these wrong reactions must be dried up so that you get the desired result. For example, mental excitement can push the meditator away from delicate and important nuances, like too much chili.

Too much excitement might be a usual reaction. The very excitement that you are experiencing causes you to lose your meditation. Your meditation is gone and all of the delicate nuances have disappeared. This excitement reflex must be dried up carefully. Otherwise, it comes like too much chili pepper, and the recipe it is not going to turn out well. The excitement is just too strong.

Other emotional reactions to inner stimuli can be inappropriate fear where there is nothing to fear. This needs to be dried up also and this time disappeared into nothing. This is nothing useful to use at all. This inappropriate fear is not a tool or a protective device. To be continued…