14th Dalai Lama
In order to train in the path that would allow us to transform death, the intermediate state, and rebirth, we have to practice on three occasions: during the waking state, during the sleeping state, and during the process of death.
I often think that we might not find value and purpose within the life we live with this one body, but we will find it through others and their lives. In this way, other people become the mirror in which we can see our own dignity and value reflected.
I must go there today –
Tomorrow the plum blossoms
Our essential aim in practising the Dharma is to create happiness and inner peace within our minds, and to transform our minds. This goal of transforming our minds lies at the very core of Dharma practice. It is the basic aim and reason for practising the Dharma, and everything else gets taken care of along the way. However, this is not to say that when you practise Dharma you should not engage in any worldly activities, or that there is no need to do so. That is not the case.
Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche
Buddhanature is pure and free from all kinds of compounded phenomena, right from the beginning.
The ultimate true nature is always devoid of anything compounded, so it is said that defilements, karma, and their full ripening are like a cloud, etc. (Uttaratantra Shastra, Stanza 158)
Therefore, buddhanature is free from the three kinds of emotions: desire, aggression, and jealousy. It is free from the emotions of karmic formation, such as virtuous actions and non-virtuous actions. And it is free from the result of emotion, the five aggregates. Therefore, the emotions are like clouds.
The defilements are said to be like clouds, karma is likened to the experience in dreams, and the full ripening of karma and defilements—the aggregates—are likened to conjurations. (Uttaratantra Shastra, Stanza 159)
The nature of beings is primordially pure; that’s why we call it buddhanature. Although emotions are seemingly apparent and seemingly stubborn, seemingly like a second nature, they are never a second nature. They are like clouds—they are adventitious, and not a true part of you. This point is quite important. In Buddhism we always come to the conclusion that these emotions and defilements are temporary. When we’re looking at a gray cloudy sky, we might call it a cloudy sky, but it’s not really a cloudy sky. The clouds are never the sky. The clouds are temporary or adventitious.
When we are with people and feeling bored, can we listen a little more carefully, stepping off the train of our own inner commenting? If we are sitting in meditation and feeling uninterested, can we come in closer to the object, not with force but with gentleness and care? What is this experience we call the breath? If someone were holding your head under water, would the breath be boring? Each breath is actually sustaining our life. Can we be with it fully, just once?
It is said that we must recognize the mind as it is, in other words as completely naked. “Naked” here means that the mind is not covered or obscured by anything. If we can really immerse our self within this original, bare state of mind, we will automatically understand the right view, and everything that is not part of the mind will automatically disappear.