When we look around us, we can see that nothing exists in isolation, which is another way of saying that everything is interdependent. Everything depends upon an infinite number of causes and conditions to come into being, arise, and fall away moment by moment. Because they are interdependent, things don’t possess a true existence of their own. For instance, how could we separate a flower from the many causes and conditions that produce it —water, soil, sun, air, seed, and so forth? Can we find a flower that exists independently from these causes and conditions? Everything is so intricately connected, it is hard to point to where one thing starts and another ends. This is what is meant by the illusory or empty nature of phenomena.
Dzigar Kongtrül Rinpoche, “The Theater of Reflection”
‘We’re in This Together
People need to see that if you hurt another person, you hurt yourself, and if you hurt yourself, you’re hurting another person. And then to begin to see that we are not in this alone. We are in this together. For me, that’s where the true morality comes from. ~ Pema Chödrön, “No Right, No Wrong”
Learning to care for ourselves and understanding that we are really in this together will help not only us but our world. It is my heart-felt wish that the worlds have peace. And this can only happen when we recognize that we are ALL in this together…Pema does such a great job in this article…please read it ..you will be happy you did!
May all sentient beings have happiness …always. _/!_
Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.~ Jung
As I have just finished reading a translation of ‘The Bodhicaryavatara’ by Santideva (Shantideva), I wondered, ‘how will I retain all this great wisdom?’ . For me, re-reading a book will give me more insight…for invariably I will have pass over some of this and some of that….but also…at times my mind is not ready to understand the full depth of a verse or a passage…and then the next time I read it …a light goes off…’Ah! Now I see better’.
From the back cover of this edition:
‘Written in India in the early eighth century AD, Santideva’s Bodhicaryavatara became one of the more popular accounts of the Buddhist spiritual path.’ One could ask ‘why this writing is so popular?’
Here my dear reader is an example: Perfection of Meditative Absorption, verse 135 – ‘If one does not let go of self one cannot let go of suffering, as one who does no let go of fire cannot let go of burning.’ With this single verse…if our mindstream is ready…we can make a direct connection between burning and suffering. but if you are me….it will take many more readings and many meditations to fully release.
So do I suggest this book to read? Yes. Make that a large caps Yes. 🙂 I had borrowed the book from our Monastery library…loved it so much bought my own copy from a used book store.
A last bit from the back cover: ‘Important as a manual of training among Mahayana Buddhists, especially in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, the Bodhicaryavatara is still used by modern Buddhist teachers.’ I agree. This book is a manual and that is how I read it. It is not always pleasant to read …some verses are grisly…’meat from skeleton’ …yet it is meant to be an awakening…to how reality is…not how we perceive it.
Enjoy! ~ Debra Saturday
People may look at you and feel that your way of life, your interest in dharma, makes no sense. Others may say that if you want to practice dharma, you ought to ordain. Ordaining or not ordaining isn’t the crucial point. It’s how you practice. ~ Ajahn Chah
Praise of Awakening Mind, verse 1 (24 seconds long)
I am testing a new type of post (for TBLC): an Audio post. This idea has been tumbling around in my mind for a few weeks.
‘The Bodhicaryavatara’ by Santideva (Shantideva) is a most wonderful jewel. I hope to write a review in the next few weeks, but for now….I can only hope my voice does some justice to this treasure.
Om Mani Padme Hum
From you Tube: ‘Sources describe this practice as if the adept is offering the flesh of his body to be cut to pieces and devoured by the gods, demonic forces etc. The ritual reminds the initiation of a shaman though the attributed meaning is different (as stated above). This particular type of meditation is believed to be extremely mentaly challenging and can be dangerous if not handled appropriately
The founder of the practice of Chöd was in The XII Century by Machig Labdrön, the consort of Padampa Sangye.’
*I found her voice to be beautiful, haunting, and elegant. And I wanted to share 🙂 *