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The purpose of this mediation was to generate the very strong wish to use my current opportunity to travel on and complete the spiritual path, and then to meditate on this wish in light of the dangers of self-cherishing.
I began the meditation by dissolving the world around me into emptiness. I started with the world outside my room dissolving away, then the room dissolved away, just leaving my body. Then I dissolved my body away into emptiness one part at a time -first my legs, then my arms, then my head, then my trunk, leaving just my spiritual heart. I placed my mind in my heart and kept it there, imagining it being very focused and stable. I developed a very calm and clear feeling which was very pleasant, and I stayed with that feeling for a while.
I then moved on to the main meditation topic.
I thought about the Queen. There have been some jubilee celebrations this weekend in the UK because our Queen has been so designated for 50 years. How did she become Queen, and have so many privileges and advantages? Because she happened to be born in a particular body to particular parents. How did that happen? Because in a previous moment of her mental continuum she created the cause to experience this appearance of being a Queen by practising giving – a huge amount of giving.
Then I thought about my life – I currently have an appearance of being a father and husband who has access to Dharma. I have perfect conditions to learn about Dharma and practice the path to enlightenment. How did that happen? Because in a previous moment in my mental continuum I created the causes to experience this appearance by practising stainless prayer and pure moral discipline.
Although the Queen has far better material circumstances at the moment, spiritually she appears to be in poverty. She will use up all her karmic positivity in this life and fall back to lower realms when she dies. The same will happen to me if I do not take the opportunity to use my precious human life to travel on the spiritual path.
I developed the strong wish to seize the opportunity and use all my time to either study or practise Dharma. I imagined always having a Dharma book in my hand. Always being mindful of Dharma and practising it in every circumstance.
I imagined seizing the opportunity provided by every moment of every precious day.
I focused on this feeling – initially it felt like I was clawing my way through time, trying to engage with my spiritual life rather than letting it slip by. After a while I felt like I HAD engaged with my spiritual life, and I was using it meaningfully, to practise Dharma purely. It felt marvellous and meaningful. I focused on this feeling for a long while, before moving on.
I then thought about what this means in terms of the dangers of self-cherishing.
Self-cherishing poisons my mind, and stops me practising Dharma purely by making me solely concerned with my own transient pleasures and happiness. I identified self-cherishing as my main enemy, which will prevent me making the best use of my precious human life.
I took a mental step back and ‘saw’ the contradiction between seizing the essence of my precious human life and self-cherishing. I mentally abandoned self-cherishing and excluded it from my mind. I then returned to the feeling of joyous effort of using my precious human life to travel the spiritual path to enlightenment. It felt very wonderful and meaningful, and I felt that this was a wonderful use of my time. I felt very happy. I stayed with this feeling for the rest of this beautiful meditation.
Through the virtues I have gathered here, my I and all living beings seize the essence of their precious human life and experience the true inner peace of full enlightenment for the benefit of all.
Practice in the Meditation Break
I will try to always have a Dharma book within arm’s reach, and whenever I get the urge to engage in some frivolous activity, read Dharma instead.
Today is my precious Spiritual Guide’s birthday. Happy Birthday Geshe-la, my closest friend and helper – may you continue to give holy Dharma appropriate to the people of this world, bless them so that they may find true meaning in their lives, and may you live for a very long time. Thank you for your kindness. All my love – Vide.