The purpose of this meditation is to develop a very strong wish to turn to Buddha, Dharma and Sangha as the sources of protection and refuge from samsara’s sufferings, and then to see what this means in light of Bodhichitta.

I began by thinking about the meditation from yesterday, and all the other sufferings of samsara. I then quickly thought about where protection can be found – in Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. I made the commitment to put great effort into this meditation today, so that it would take me closer to gaining the protection I need.

With that thought, I did some breathing meditation, relaxing my body and bringing my mind into my heart. I concentrated on a feeling of clarity, and that my mind was mixing with my Spiritual Guide’s clarity. It felt completely calm and clear, settled and still. I stayed with this stillness for a while.

I then moved on to the main meditation. I rekindled my meditation of yesterday, where I imagined a future life where I was similar to an animal being experimented on in some laboratory. I was experiencing great confusion, pain and fear. There was no help and no respite. Continual suffering. I looked at this for a while and developed sincere dread, because this will definitely happen to me.

I then mentally rewound time, like on a DVD, coming back to today, and this life. My actions now will decide if I end up in that laboratory. I know what I need to do – I need to turn to Buddha, Dharma and Sangha for protection against such a future.

I looked to Buddha, and recognised that I am like a sick man, plagued with the disease of delusions. Buddha is the supreme physician, who knows my disease and knows exactly how to cure me. His Dharma is the medicine for my sickness, and if I turn to him, I can learn and take this medicine. The Sangha are the spiritual community who can help me understand the medicine, and give me practical help. I resolved to turn to the Three Jewels of Buddha, Dharma and Sangha to protect me from the suffering that will definitely happen.

I focused on these thoughts, and it felt like the waves of my faith were washing me into the arms of Buddha. My weak and pathetic body and mind were bourne into his arms, which supported me and protected me from the sufferings of the ocean of samsara. I concentrated on the feeling of being in the arms of Buddha, and being protected by his wisdom and compassion. I focused on this for a long while. It was humbling.

I then turned my thoughts to what this means in terms of Bodhichitta – the wish to become a Buddha for the benefit of all.

I turn to Buddha for protection. What am I doing while in his protection? I am learning to protect myself from suffering – this is the process of becoming a Buddha myself. I turn to Buddha for refuge, and my aim is to become an object of refuge myself. I thought about how wonderful this is, and then returned to the feeling of being protected from suffering by my strong faith and refuge in Buddha, Dharma and Sangha.

Dedication

May all living beings turn to the Three Jewels for protection from samsara’s suffering, and may they become objects of refuge quickly, for the benefit of all.

Practice in the Meditation Break

I will imagine myself in the protection of Buddha, constantly taking the medicine of Dharma, and being helped by my Sangha.