Gate of sweet nectar

“Calling out to hungry hearts Everywhere through endless time You who wander, you who thirst I offer you this Bodhi Mind. Calling all you hungry spirits Everywhere through endless time Calling all you hungry hearts All those left behind Gather round and share this meal Your joy and sorrow I make it mine.” We are being one with the Buddha’s in the ten directions We are being one with the Dharma in the ten directions We are being one with the Sangha in the ten directions Being one with all the formless forms throughout space and time Being one with great wisdom Being one with great compassion Being one with great action Being one with Prajna Paramita, the mother of all perfection Being one with the unconditioned Being one with the boundless Being one with the inconceivable May I extend all my love to my own being, friends, enemies, family, community and all creations for so much done on my behalf May all those who practice continue to empower, enrich and enjoy May all creations receive loving benefactors May we always have the courage to bear witness, to see ourselves as Other and Other as ourselves....

Facing Cancer with an Attitude

  It’s been over thirteen years since I was diagnosed with a stage four transitional cell carcinoma and was given four months to live. Often people ask what factors do I attribute to recovering from cancer. I am not sure as to what determinants were effective, there were probably as many as there are variables for so many of us being diagnosed with the big C. One assumption, funda-mentally, I dare say, has lot to do with attitude. What I mean by that is that there are correlations and cause and effect between the mind, the body and the immune system and how they function or become dysfunctional. We all have cancer cells in our body. The questions then become: which particular people have cells that become malignant, what gives the impetus for those to propagate and how do they vanish or come back with a mission after remission? Edwin Friedman in his book “A Failure of Nerve” explains that normal cells have a specific identity and gravitate towards other cells that have similar functions; they specialize in order to contribute to the overall functioning of the larger body. They communicate with other cells in a mutually reciprocal network that regulate each other’s growth and behavior and they become cooperative. They know when to quit and have a gene for self destruction when they are dangerous to the host, which is a formidable altruistic phenomenon, build in bodhisattva cells! Malignant cells differ from normal cells in all the respects mentioned and they lose their capacity for self definition, they are un-self regulating, reproduce uncontrollably, compete and instead of self...

Everyday DZOGCHEN practice, part 1, Dilgo Khyentse

“The everyday practice is simply to develop a complete carefree acceptance, an openness to al situations without limit. We should realize openness as the playground of our emotions and relate to people without artificiality, manipulation or strategy. We can experience everything totally, never withdrawing into ourselves as an rodent hides in its hole. This practice releases tremendous energy which is usually constricted by the process of maintaining fixed reference points. Referentiality is the process by which we retreat from the direct experience of everyday life. Being present in the moment may initially trigger fear. But by welcoming the sensation of fear with complete openness, we cut through the barriers created by habitual emotional patterns. When we engage in the practice of discovering space, we should develop the feeling of opening ourselves out completely to he entire universe. We should open ourselves with absolute simplicity and nakedness of mind. This is the powerful and ordinary practice of dropping the mask of self protection. We shouldn’t make a division in our meditation between perception and the field of perception. We shouldn’t become like a cat watching a mouse. We should realize that the purpose of meditation is not to go deeply into ourselves or withdraw from the world. Practice should be free and non conceptual, un-constrained by introspection and concentration. Vast un originated self luminous wisdom space is the ground of being, the beginning and the end of confusion. The presence of awareness in the primordial space has no bias toward enlightenment or non enlightenment. The ground of being which is known as pure or original mind is the source from...

Everyday DZOGCHEN ,part 2 from Dilgo Khyentse

  This is the dance of the 5 elements in which matter is a symbol of energy and energy a symbol of emptiness. We are symbol of our own enlightenment. With no effort or practice whatsoever, liberation or enlightenment is already there. The everyday practice of DZOGCHEN is just everyday life itself. Since the undeveloped state doesn’t exist, there is no need to behave in any special way or attempt to attain anything above and beyond what you actually are. There should be no feeling of striving to reach some amazing goal or advanced state. To strive for such a state is a neurosis which only conditions us and serves to obstruct the flow of the Mind. We should also avoid thinking of ourselves as worthless persons-we are naturally free and unconditioned. We are intrinsically enlightened and lack nothing. When engaging in meditation practice, we should feel it to be as natural as eating, breathing and defecating. It should not become a specialized or formal event, bloated with seriousness and solemnity. We should realize that meditation transcends effort, practice, aims, goals and the duality of liberation and non liberation. Meditation is always ideal: there is no need to correct anything. Since what arises is simply the play of the mind as such, there is no unsatisfactory meditation and no need to judge thoughts as good or bad. Therefore we should simply sit. Simply stay in your own place, in your own condition just as it is. Forgetting self conscious feelings we do not have to think “I am meditating”. Our practice should be without effort, strain or attempt to...

Settling the Mind in its Natural State

This practice has been emphasized in the Mahayana tradition before spreading to Nepal and Tibet. It means that we steadily observe virtuous and non virtuous thoughts arising in the mind without desire or aversion, letting thoughts subside of their own accord and awareness arise without any object other than itself. Chokyi Gyaltsen explained it this way: “Whatever sort of thoughts arise, without suppressing them, recognize what they emerge from and what they dissolve into; stay focused while you observe their nature. By doing so , eventually the motion of thoughts ceases and there is stillness…each time you observe the nature of any thoughts that arise they will vanish by themselves, following which, a vacuity appears. Likewise, if you examine the mind when it remains without movement, you will see an unobscured, clear and vivid vacuity. That is called the union of stillness and motion”. Dudjom Lingpa said; “Eventually all coarse and subtle thoughts will be calmed in the empty expanse of the essential nature of your mind and consciousness comes to rest in its own natural, unmodified state. That experience is soothing, gentle, clear , limpid consciousness that is neither benefited nor harmed by thoughts, and you experience a remarkable sense of stillness without needing to modify, reject or embrace anything.” Settling the mind in its natural state is an effective way of knowing the mind and healing the mind. We can remove mental habits by realizing : That thinking the thoughts and images we experience don’t exist outside of our own mind, That compulsively responding to mental events with craving and aversion are not intrinsically pleasant or unpleasant...