There are three essentials of zen practice:
First of the Three Essentials is Faith
First we must have faith. Faith that there’s a tremendous potential within us.
We all can feel it. That’s there’s something more to us. That there’s this untapped power inside.
We must believe in this feeling.
We must believe in our own latent capacity to do good.
We must believe that we can change.
We must believe that our story isn’t fixed.
And that no matter how old we get or how terrible we’ve behaved there is still a chance for us to unlock and unfold our own inherent Buddha Nature.
The Buddha embodied and demonstrated it for us.
The lineage masters showed us that it comes in all shapes and sizes.
We may not know it now as we’re wrapped up in greed, hatred and delusion but if you just can believe in your own innate Buddha Nature and start to live from that place of potential a more wise and compassionate stream of energies, actions, words and behaviours will flow and unfold.
And it’s not like we have to create these – all you have to really do is put it all down and open up yourself to the vast illuminating emptiness that is the source spring of suchness from which every good thing arises from. And which is the truth of who you are.
Every human being has Buddha Nature – it’s innate – fundamental. An inherent potential within each and every one of us.
We’re not Buddha’s yet because we haven’t discovered our own Buddha Nature. We haven’t given ourselves the chance to stand in stillness, speak with kindness or reach out with compassionate activity that seeks to benefit all.
We must have faith that this Buddha Nature is within us. That we can discover it. That the potential is there for us to find and use in our own life.
If we don’t believe it. If we don’t have faith that this Buddha energy can flow through our own lives and transform our body, speech and mind we may as well just stop coming to dharma talks and just go back to whatever we we’re doing before.
You must stoke this faith in your own potential.
You must realize it’s your birthright.
You must have a burning desire to know it fully and express it completely in your own life. And that means in your own life as it is right this very moment.
You cultivate it through non-cultivation.
Just stop and put it all down.
You nurture it by not creating or generating concepts around it.
Just stop and put it all down.
You live it by releasing all your should s and shouldn’ts, your rights and wrongs, your wants and don’t wants.
Just stop and put it all down.
You are a Buddha.
Open up to the inherent wisdom and compassion that’s in you and is you right now.
Let go of thoughts of the past.
Leave thoughts of the future alone.
And in this moment don’t try to make anything special whatsoever.
Just let it be for a moment.
Free of your tinkering and tweeking mind.
Take a deep breath in and breath out.
Be presence itself.
To not have a single thought in this moment is such sweet relief.
Then, to turn perception back on itself and look at what’s looking.
You’ll see the simple clarity of awareness.
A radiant clarity and openness that does not fall into categories of coming and going, of birth and death of good and bad.
It’s free from all concepts.
Just a simple lucid clarity.
Put it all down.
And look without looking and you’ll see – you’ll see free of ideas of you and me.
Have the faith.
Get comfortable seeing your first face.
It’s quite ordinary and empty.
Mind wants it to be full of magical and mystical things.
But the truth is so much simpler than that. Mind makes it complicated and hard.
The single word awareness directs our efforts and points us on our way.
What we do next is up to our karmic tendencies.
Some have a hard time abiding in open fresh loving awareness.
Some need a thousand different expedients to help quel the karmic winds of mind.
All roads eventually come to truth.
And that truth is beyond words.
Some people are swift at discovering the wordless way.
Some take a little longer and gobble up a whole sea of concepts before they can rid themselves of their doubts.
But you have to have faith that it is possible. You must have faith in this inherent Buddha Nature.
The masters over time just hold the empty mirror up for you again and again and again knowing that one day you’ll recognize yourself. And on that day we’ll all laugh and sing and dance.
The dharma crown that you’ve been looking for has always been on your head.
Trust your teacher when they say that you are the Buddha.
All of you here have the clear radiant mind of the Buddha already. There’s not one ounce of difference.
You’ve got to finally believe that truth for yourself.
Faith is the first step.
Next is Curiosity
Zen encourages us to investigate and be curious about ourselves and our life.
Zen talks a lot about Buddha Nature, Your True Self, Buddha Mind, Zen Mind, the Dharmakaya, Suchness and all other sorts of crazy things. They all sound very exotic and fascinating.
But Zen isn’t about knowing the meanings of these words or memorizing new concepts.
Zen wants you to poke around your life so you can get to the root of your experience.
Like being curious about mind…
We use the word mind a lot but have you ever really looked into the mind?
When you look into mind – I mean really take a look at it – you discover that there appears to be two aspects of mind: A small mind and a BIG mind.
The Small Mind
The small mind is what we know best and causes us the most trouble. This small mind is always changing. Always checking checking checking. Always worrying. Always getting worked up about something. Always getting lost in thoughts. Always thinking about the future or ruminating over the past. The small mind is always obsessed with itself. Or obsessed with what other people think of it. This small mind seems to hold or be the storehouse for memories of events that have passed. It can imagine and dream up all sorts of things.
And hidden within the small mind is that ever elusive and slippery sense of “I am” that sense of a me is tucked away in there too.
Now I think that all of us can agree with this description of the small mind…
We’ve all had these experiences right?
Or we’ve noticed our minds acting in these ways – correct?
The BIG Mind
The BIG mind is very simple and ordinary compared to all the fantastical things that the small mind gets up to.
The BIG mind seems to stand apart from all thoughts, ideas, worries and imaginings like a witness.
It’s as if thoughts, ideas, worries and imaginings arise within the space of the BIG mind.
When we look into this aspect of mind, when we direct the energies of attention to this space where thoughts, ideas and imaginings arise, to this contentless awareness, we discover that it is open, still, clear, and there is a knowingness that is inseparable from this open clear space.
We also discover that this awareness, this openness, this stillness, this knowingness, this space-like nature of mind is always present.
It’s always there.
And it’s always the same all the time. Open. Clear. Still. Knowing.
This open aware space appears to be the same open aware space that was there when we were a child.
It’s the same aware space that was there in our teens, and even our twenties.
And it’s the same aware space that was there at the start of this talk and has been unchanged by all these words I’ve spoken.
This aware space is there whether we’re happy or sad, and is that knowingness that knows or sees that happiness or sadness has arisen.
This aware space appears to be there silently watching all the shenanigans that the small mind gets up to.
Can all of us agree with this experience of the BIG mind?
We’ve all experienced mind like this right?
Had some glimpse of this witnessing awareness that is open and free.
Maybe we’ve experienced it while looking at a sunset, gazing into the face of our beloved, maybe while walking through the forest. This open spacious aspect of mind.
This BIG mind appears to be open and spacious and seems to hold the small mind within its empty space.
Small mind arises within the space of the BIG mind.
Seeing small & BIG mind clearly…
Let’s try this example – close your eyes take a deep breath in and breath out through the nose. Allow the body to settle and now look into your mind.
You’ll just discover an empty void that has no beginning or end.
Everyone can see that…
Now imagine a little puppy.
Imagine a cute little happy puppy.
See it and imagine it as best you can.
Did you see how the puppy appears in the space of the BIG mind?
Now let the image of the puppy go.
Let it fade away and allow that empty void space of mind to be as it is – clear, spacious and free.
Did you see how the thinking and imaginative small mind arose as a puppy within the space of the BIG mind?
Did you see how the BIG mind wasn’t changed at all by the content of the puppy arising within its space?
The BIG mind just allowed and held the energy of the small mind as its creative display.
Pretty cool right?
The BIG mind is always there unchanging.
Small mind is always changing. It’s always arising, abiding, and falling back into the BIG mind.
If you look you look you can’t find and “I”…
If you spend some time looking into the BIG mind, into the empty clear inner space, you’ll discover that you can’t really seem to find anything there.
It’s just empty, perfectly clear, expansive, and there seems to be a knowingness that’s always there.
But no matter how hard we look at and into the BIG mind, into this aware space we cannot find a self. We cannot find a me or “I”.
Resting in the BIG mind and the “I” disappears…
And maybe you’ve also had the experience of resting in the radiance, just abiding in this open space like awareness and that sense or feeling of “self” or “I” just disappears.
You’re sitting there in meditation and the sense of “I” just seems to fade away.
And all that’s left is this open full spaciousness.
You and that sense of being a “me” dissolves.
It just disappears.
When we rest in the open radiance of awareness or the BIG mind, one can experience just this very simple and clear, fresh, open and empty field that permeates and penetrates the ten directions.
The ice-cube of “self” dissolves…
This experience can be compared to an ice-cube sitting in a glass of water.
When the ice-cube (which represents the small mind) when that ice-cube melts it returns back to its natural state which is water.
All separation and false identity with being an ice-cube is seen through and dissolved.
Then the ice-cube sees for the first time that it was water all along.
The essence of water is wetness
Rest in the fullness of presence and “self” dissolves…
The same is true when we rest in awareness.
When we sit with eyes open looking without looking.
When we sit in the full presence of the empty clarity of the BIG mind.
The small mind and this idea of a “self” or a “me” dissolves.
No one is there to be present.
Just a fullness of presence remains.
The essence of awareness is just this sheer empty knowingness – this fullness and freedom.
Free of any idea of you or any hard frozen boundaries of an isolated localized self.
That me-my-I ness dissolves.
One is just aware space.
It’s very interesting when you look curiously at mind isn’t it?
So which one of these minds can you take as the true you?
Zen would say to, “Keep a mind that clings to nothing whatsoever.“
Don’t answer that question.
Don’t reify these pointers.
Don’t be so quick to think you know something.
Stay open and unbound in the space of the not knowing mind and look. Look deeper into your own experience.
Zen is beyond words and that question is a trick.
But we need to point to our natural experience to clarify wisdom and dissolve ignorance so Zen would draw your attention to getting acquainted with the BIG mind.
And to be curious as to the differences between these two aspects of mind – BIG and small. To really look into these two very different aspects of mind. And get better at abiding in open loving awareness by not getting swept up in the karmic habit tendencies of the small mind.
Seeing Clearly small vs BIG mind…
When we get more and more comfortable at resting in the radiance or abiding as/in open vast loving awareness we can see that…
Aside from the clear light nature of this BIG mind everything else seems to be always moving.
Changing. Changing. Changing.
There’s nothing stable about this small mind (or life).
Nothing you can really hold to as a secure base.
When you curiously look – it seems like the small mind is always in a state of flux.
One moment it’s happy then the next it’s pissed off, then it changes again and it’s worried about some sort of thing.
Or it gets obsessed over something someone said.
It’s always flipflopping about.
It’s always changing.
And that’s the thing – if it’s changeable it cannot be the “true-self” that you seek.
The small mind is a marvelous trickster. It puts on a convincing show and really makes you feel like an independent inherently existing person but if we look at any of these things that we hold or cling to as a self, we see that all that we hold to be a “me” is always changing. Always in a state of flux. Not stable whatsoever.
And if it is changing it can never give us the freedom that we know is possible for us.
The Buddha asked the monks one day,
“Is that which is inconstant easeful or stressful?“
The monks answered, “Stressful, lord.“
“And is it fitting to regard what is inconstant, stressful, subject to change as: ‘This is mine. This is my self. This is what I am’?“
“No, lord.“Pañcavaggi Sutta: Five Brethren (aka: Anatta-lakkhana Sutta: The Discourse on the Not-self Characteristic)
You have to see this clearly.
If it is changeable or subject to change this can’t be the true-self.
Small mind – always changing
BIG mind – never changes
So if it is changeable and of the nature to change we can ask ourselves the question that the Buddha asked, “Is it fitting to regard what is inconstant, stressful, subject to change as: ‘This is mine. This is my self. This is what I am’?”
The answer is no.
Let’s go have a looksee at some of the things that we cling to as a self…
Things like this body, our feelings, our thoughts and memories…
We usually lump all that stuff together and take them to be a self right?
Let’s curiously look into them to see if they are worthy of our designating them to be a self that we cling to and believe in…
Sit comfortably with your spine straight, keep your eyes slightly open following the slope of the nose, take a deep breath in through the nose and out through the mouth then let breathing be natural and at ease…
Rest there in that openness for a moment.
Breath flowing naturally – releasing the grip of attention into the space of the room around you.
Now let’s curiously look at these things we cling to as a self:
This body – you’re having an experience of this body – but is the body stable or is it constantly changing? If we really look we’ll see that it’s constantly changing. From the rise and fall of the breath. To the blood that’s flowing through your veins right now. To the thousands upon thousands of skin cells that have just died in this moment. When we honestly look at the body we see that even though the body seems stable it’s actually changing changing changing. It’s changing all the time. Then with that wisdom we can start to release our belief and grasp on the body as self. If it’s changing and inconstant we can let it go and say to ourselves, “This is not mine, this is not me, this is not my self.”
Feelings – are they stable or changing? Are feelings always the same or are they constantly changing? Is the feeling you’re experiencing now the same feeling you had when we started our meeting today? Is it the same feeling you had when you woke up? When you had lunch? When we honestly look we see that feelings are always changing changing changing. Even this feeling right now is new and different from just a couple of minutes ago. Then with that wisdom we can start to release our belief and grasp on feelings as self. If it’s changing and inconstant we can let feelings go and say to ourselves, “This is not mine, this is not me, this is not my self.”
Thoughts – are thoughts stable or changing? Are you experiencing the same thoughts now as you had earlier in the day? Are you having the same thoughts now as you had when we first started this dharma talk? When we honestly look we see that thoughts, ideas, memories, worries all this mind stuff is constantly changing changing changing. Then with that wisdom we can start to release our belief and grasp on thoughts, memories all this mind stuff that is constantly changing, we can release our notions that these thoughts, memories and ideas are a self. If they’re changing and inconstant we can let them go and say to ourselves, “This is not mine, this is not me, this is not my self.”
I amness -What about the sense of this elusive and slippery feeling of “I am”? Is that sense of being an “I” stable or changing? Maybe even in this moment that sense of being an “I” has softened or even disappeared completely compared to when we first started this curious looking. So we can see that even this faint feeling of being an “I” is fleeting and constantly changing. One moment it’s very solid and the next moment it’s barely there or gone completely. Then with that wisdom we can start to release our belief and grasp on this sense of being an “I” this “I amness” we can let go of our ideas that this “I amness” is a self. If it’s changing and inconstant we can let it go and say to ourselves, “This is not mine, this is not me, this is not my self.”
If all these things that I take to be a self are not me then what am I?
You see this is the trick question of the small mind.
It needs answers.
It wants a stable ground to stand on because everything about it is constantly changing.
And the small mind loves to get all wrapped up in itself.
It binds boundlessness.
We need to become free of all conditioned things.
Free of thoughts, ideas and concepts.
Look curiously at your experience…
When we put down this body, feelings, thoughts and all this mind stuff we notice that there is something left – that empty aware space.
The BIG mind that we discovered earlier.
This empty aware space that is left has been there the whole time watching and waiting patiently for us to realize it, to dissolve into it and then to actualize it in our very lives.
What is this bright open knowingness that sees the ever changing nature of body, feelings and thoughts?
Be curious and look.
If it is changing or of the nature to change then we can say as the Buddha said, “This is not mine, this is not me, this is not my self.”
You can do this with all the myriad things of life. It’s easy.
And once you’ve stripped it all bare – all that’s left is clear empty knowingness.
Zen says “The Single word Awareness is the gateway to all mysteries.”
The Buddha after going through this process of stripping the mind bare said,
“There remains only consciousness: pure & bright. There remains only equanimity: pure & bright, pliant, malleable, & luminous.”Dhatu-vibhanga Sutta: An Analysis of the Properties
Maybe you felt or experienced that sense for yourself as we went through this practice.
After we stripped everything off all that remained was this pure and bright, stable and still, empty and clear consciousness.
Ever fresh. Unchanging. Awareness.
You can easily verify this for yourself by resting in the radiance of intrinsic awareness even for just a brief moment.
The empty mirror like nature of mind is already yours so why do you keep on seeking it elsewhere?
The empty mirror like nature of mind has been revealed to you so why do you think reading another book is going to help you more than looking at mind?
The empty still clarity is always there.
Give yourself more and more chances to rest in open intrinsic awareness…
You start to see that empty still clarity (of BIG mind) more and more clearly the more you clearly give yourself the chance to see it and know it completely.
The more you rest in the radiance.
The more you chew the koan.
The more you stop making waves and instead flow with circumstances.
Hui-k’o, Bodhidharma’s student stared at a wall for years until the karmic winds of his mind settled down.
Then the crystal clarity of radiant awareness was self-evident.
There was no denying this innate clarity then.
He no longer was caught up and bound by the creative displays of the small mind.
And he could see clearly for himself now how amazing it was to live in open thought-free awareness.
You too will see more and more clearly the perfectly still clarity that is your very own unborn Buddha Nature.
Then against that empty mirror like stillness all that moves and changes within the empty space of the mirror like Buddha Mind is no longer grasped at and clung to as a self.
No longer grasped at with the hopes that it will give you happiness because now you know that it is fleeting, always changing and will just lead to more and more stress.
You’ll start to see more and more quickly the arising, the abiding, and dissolving of all things within the space of the BIG mind.
And then you’ll see how even this recognition and labelling of movement is the subtle motions of the small mind and is to be let go of too.
Keep a mind that alights on nothing whatsoever…
What is this one bright clarity that is beyond all these movements?
Zen invites you to look and see for yourself.
Sit back. Be still. And look.
Start to live from that place.
Start to be BIG MIND.
The whole world seems to arise, stay for a while and then disappear.
But that sky-like empty and clear mind is always there.
It illuminates all these changing things. But it itself is beyond all the change.
All things rise and fall but it itself is beyond rising and falling.
Compared to the empty sky-like nature of mind everything is coming and going.
Even though empty and beyond all coming and going – thousands of functions arise to meet conditions.
It is a great show. So why cling? Why grasp at flowers in the sky?
Why make such a big deal about all these temporary and impermanent things?
Your life may seem like a catastrophe right now but it will change. All things aside from the clear light nature of mind are subject to the laws of change and impermanence.
Stay in the clarity of unchanging awareness.
Abiding in that space gives one the subtle power to not be triggered or stirred up so quickly by the arising and falling of the 10,000 things.
A new found spaciousness emerges within oneself. It’s as if sights and sounds move through your location and you have the time and emotional capacity to see each moment with wonder, ease and wisdom.
Knowing well that there is “no-self” there aside from this radiant awareness watching the show, feeling the sensations, experiencing these thoughts.
When the show of sensations, feelings and thoughts dissolve the clear knowing nature of mind remains. It was there while all of that was going on too. The light of awareness always shines brightly.
As the Buddha said, “You are consciousness – stillness: pure & bright.”
We get curious about ourselves…
A new found curiosity arises as we bear witness to the karmic patterns of habit energies that flow through this empty space.
We become curious to the reactions and responses that arise:
We hold ourselves tenderly…
Why did I do that?
Why did I say that?
Why am I thinking this way?
We’ll start to see the locus of all the trouble – our self-clinging self referential mind.
And we start to know ever more deeply that this self-referential mind is nothing but a smoke show anyways so why get so caught up in it all.
Then you stop feeding the small mind. We can stop given it the power.
We take our power back.
In our tradition we do this by chewing our mind-meal – the Koan Atha.
Remember – If it’s changeable then this cannot be the true me. It’s just a fleeting apparition. Like a bubble of foam. Appearing for the briefest of moments from a sea of causes and conditions and those causes and conditions arise from mind. So why are you taking all of this so personal when there is no person to be found?
Sit back and watch all the madness.
As the Buddha said, “You are consciousness – stillness: pure & bright.”
Come back home to your true self.
Look how all the things pass through and cover over the illuminating wisdom of Suchness.
Don’t grab. Don’t grasp. Don’t be dragged off your dharma throne of radiant awareness by the karmic winds of mind.
A new sense of grounded power begins to emerge the more we rest in the radiance. The more that we see into the clear emptiness of mind that all things appear in and to.
Just like a mirror is unaffected by whatever appears in it. You too have the ability to not be tossed and triggered by the images that arise in the clarity of mind.
Sit back and watch.
Be like aware space.
All things move through it easily if we don’t cling and grab at the clouds moving through the sky like nature of mind.
If the mind kicks up another duststorm of thoughts…
Just sit still.
Watch and wait.
Enjoy the show.
Let all the lights and sounds dissolve back into source.
Don’t be tricked into saying or doing something that you’ll regret later.
Be curious. Look into this so called self.
It’s quite the show arising in the mirror like nature of mind.
You’ll have a good laugh at all the shenanigans your mind gets up to.
You’re a wiley trickster and have pulled the wool over your own eyes.
Don’t take my word for it. Go! Look and see for yourself what a magical display it all is.
Be curious. Sit back and watch. Be like aware space.
Curiously look out upon the creative display of mind.
The Next is Determination
Calm. Kind. Clear.
These are three qualities that all people can agree to that emerge from meditation.
This type of determination when it comes to our practice is obvious. This is what you expect a teacher to talk about. That we will be determined to dedicate some time each day to practice. This is why you’re called practitioners.
It’s expected that you’ll be determined to carve out time from your day to practice.
This can be a big challenge for a lot of people.
It’s like trying to reign in a wild horse when we first try to work with mind through the practices that our teacher gives us.
And on top of that realization of how wild and distracted our karmic energies are we have to contend with how busy our lives can get. There’s deadlines at work, bills to pay, meals to cook, loved ones to care for, the house to clean, etc.
Somehow we get it in our mind that the events and movements of our everyday lives are not the practice. We get this idea in our minds that our practice gets interrupted by the busyness of life.
But we must dissolve those barriers and embrace all aspects of our lives.
Our lives unfold our karma in every moment. This is your story. You’re at the centre of the mandala of your life. You are the creator and created experience of whatever appears.
Yes, if you want to minimize your unskillful karma then you must find time to sit in meditation every day, no excuse, even just a couple minutes a day, you must be determined to take your medicine. To calm the energies of the body. To still the currents of the mind. To chew the koan and rest in the radiance.
This is just the way it is.
But we also must be determined to take the medicine that our life is bringing to us in the form of so-called everyday situations and adversity.
Any time that you encounter any weirdness in your life, any adversity and struggle, you must keep in mind that these experiences are nothing other than our energies from our past mind states, words and actions finally catching up to us in the present.
Don’t be surprised. Don’t reject. Don’t make a big fuss about anything.
Just embrace each moment of your Karma with Calmness, Kindness, Clearness.
It’s all a great show.
A creative display of sights and sounds that continually tests you to see if you’re expressing your Buddha Nature naturally in that moment.
Are you being calm, kind and clear?
All of it is just your own creative display.
So we must do our best, each day, in each moment to try and be calm, kind and clear.
We must do our best to bring those essential, fundamental, natural qualities out at all times.
To express them in each moment of our lives.
Our everyday lives are the actualization and expression of our seated practice.
Can you maintain your practice while moving through your life?
We must see that all of our life is an opportunity for practice.
All of it.
All of it is for you.
To see yourself and to be your true self.
Practice doesn’t only happen on the cushion or while listening to a Dharma talk. It happens all the time in our own lives. There’s no other place for us to actualize our Buddhahood. It has to be right here right now. It has to unfold right in that moment when your life is going off the rails.
That’s the perfect time to unfold your Buddhahood.
Stuck in traffic, ordering coffee, making dinner, having a conversation with an angry customer.
All of our life is practice.
All of our life is the great opportunity.
All of our life is it.
All of our life can be infused with our innate Buddha wisdom, insight and compassion.
Every moment gives you this opportunity – to be calm, kind and clear.
To reach out and embrace each experience with the fullness of your being.
Whatever conditions arise they arise for you. They are nothing other than your karma unfolding so just do yourself the favour and be determined to embrace every adversity as it arises right then and there and be done with it – calmly, kindly and clearly.
The Master Bodhidharma called it the practice of accepting adversity.
“What is the practice of accepting adversity?
When you feel like you’re suffering and you’ve encountered adversity and hardship a practitioner of the Way should reflect:
“For innumerable lifetimes, I have pursued the trivial instead of the essential, drifted through all spheres of existence, created so much animosity and hatred, hurt and harmed others endlessly.
Even though now I have done no wrong that I can see, I am reaping the karmic consequences of past transgressions. I am being punished by my past. This is something that neither gods nor men can foresee or impose upon me. Therefore I will accept it willingly, open-heartedly, without any resentment or objection.”
The sutras says, “When you meet with hardships and adversities don’t get upset.”
How can you do that? With this insight. With this understanding in mind, you’re in harmony with the Principle, advancing on the path through the experience of adversity. Using the experience of your life. This is called the practice of accepting adversity.”
Stop resisting it. Stop complaining about it. Stop getting mad at it. Just allow it to be free of what your “me” wants it to be and embrace it calmly, kindly and clearly.
This is just the truth of the law of karma unfolding so why do you continue to get upset and create more karma?
Why do you make such a big fuss?
It is what it is – so be done with all your bellyaching and just embrace your karma as it arises.
Be determined to embrace and accept whatever is arising as your own karma.
Then the mind stops making waves.
Mind stops making more karma.
Want to stop making more karma?
Then embrace what is arising free from any should’s or should nots.
Calm. Kind. Clear.
It is what it is. So let it be. Then in that freedom the truth will be revealed so easy to see. Function arises naturally in that moment as an expression of your essential nature.
Dishes are dirty – we clean them. Simple. Don’t make any more stories. The body gets sick – no problem this is my karma. Accept it and move on with new behaviours that match the moment free of your expectations of what you want it to be.
Accept fully and deeply this and every moment. Let it flow through you and don’t have any rough places where it can get stuck. Don’t grasp. Don’t cling to how you think or want it to be. See it clearly for what it is right now.
Then to prevent more waves of karmic mind from arising take a deep breath in and breathe out then silently say to yourself,
“This is my karma. I embrace it with calmness, kindness and clarity.”
Yes we need to make time every day to rest in the radiance and chew the koan.
But we always must be determined to create some space and to not react in unskillful ways to what is arising in this moment.
Each moment is for you to actualize your Buddhahood.
Calm. Kind. Clear.
If you sincerely practiced accepting adversity as it arises you would float effortlessly on the heart waves of life. New directions will arise and loving skillful actions would emerge on their own. People would think you were a saint as you sail effortlessly through life with grace and joy.
Like floating downstream while poised effortlessly on a stalk of bamboo.
Be sensitive to the ever changing movements of each moment. And have fun.
Allow your meditation to be in motion. Moving freely through the ever changing currents of your life.
Let go of your expectations of everything or be dragged around by them. Like being caught in an undertow of rough waters.
Let go and allow. Rest in the open spaciousness of this moment with wide open arms embracing your karma as it arises.
Calm. Kind. Clear.
Be determined to embrace all things just as your own awareness allows all things to be.
Sick – embrace it.
Car breaks down – embrace it.
You’re marriage falls apart – embrace it.
This is just your karma unfolding. Don’t make more problems by rejecting what’s trying to get worked out in this moment for you right now.
Just rest and be open and free.
In that space of open effortless ease – awakened actions arise to meet conditions magically and naturally. Words emerge that are just right. Hands reach out at just the right moment and all circumstances are transformed from burdens into blessings.
Embrace and don’t create more karma
Accept adversity and be at ease with whatever arises
Still the currents of your karma creating mind with the koan
Abide in the radiance of awakened awareness and harmony abounds in all times
This is not hard work. But we make it hard when we think we know something. When we bring thoughts and ideas into the mix we become trapped and stop the flow of the way.
Just put it all down.
Let be what is.
Drop your stories and just embrace this – whatever this may be.
Calm. Kind. Clear.