The purpose of this meditation is to generate a heartfelt wish to be free of the torment of samsara, and then to consider what this means in terms of reliance upon a Spiritual Guide.

I began by making the preparations for meditation, and then started by thinking about how samsara’s pleasures give no contentment, only torment.

We grumble to ourselves about how it would be so much better if our partner was different in some way, or our job was different in some way, or our car, house, neighbours, country etc. etc. was different. We feel that if these things were different, as we wish, we would be happy. But if these changes did come about, we would find that we are just as discontent. Before long we would want something else from our partner – perhaps even wanting the ‘old’ one back!

If we fulfilled all our samsaric wishes, we would still experience torment.

cloud likeI thought about how we are like people who gaze at the sky, and grasp at clouds, thinking that they can satisfy their needs. Such a thought is crazy, but we are the same, thinking that samaric pleasures can satisfy our needs. They only lead to torment.

I thought about these points, and developed a very tranquil mind that felt like all my normal objects of desire were like clouds – insubstantial and incapable of providing the satisfaction I wish for in my heart of hearts. After a while I saw clearly that they could not give me happiness, because they were cloud-like, and I felt a lovely tranquil feeling of wishing to abandon them in favour of the contentment of a tanquil mind. I saw samsara’s inability to satisfy me, and abandoned it. I focused on this feeling for a while.

I then thought about what this means in terms of reliance upon a Spiritual Guide. The fact of the matter is that I would never have identified objects of desire as cloud-like without the help of my Spiritual Guide. Without him, I would have struggled throughout my life to attain more and more objects or experiences in the belief that ‘the next one’ will be the one which gives me satisfaction. But with his wisdom to guide me, I can turn away from samsara, and find true contentment.

I combined this feeling of reliance upon by Spiritual Guide and the tranquillity of abandoning samsara into one feeling, which was beautifully peaceful, tranquil and meaningful. I remained in the truly wonderful feeling for the rest of the meditation.


May all living beings come to see that samsara’s pleasures are like clouds, and abandon them as sources of contentment, as any sensible person does not rely on mere clouds for happiness.

Practice in the Meditation Break

I will try to maintain the view that samsaric things are cloud-like, and remember that my tranquillity of mind is the actual source of happiness.