Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Yet More from My Reading on Holy Isle

p. 83 If while we practice we are not aware that the world is suffering, that children are dying of hunger, that social injustice is going on everywhere, we are not practicing mindfulness. We are just trying to escape. But anger is not enough. Jesus told us to love our enemy. “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” This teaching helps us know how to look at the person we consider to be the cause of our suffering. If we practice looking deeply into his situation and the causes of how he came to be the way he is now, and if we visualize ourselves as being born in his condition, we may see that we could have become exactly like him. When we do that, compassion arises in us naturally, and we see that the other person is to e helped and not punished. In that moment, our anger transforms itself into the energy of compassion. Suddenly, the one we have been calling our enemy becomes our brother or sister.

p. 84 Buddhist meditation—stopping, calming, and looking deeply—is to help us understand better. In each of us is a seed of understanding. That seed is God. It is also the Buddha. If you doubt the existence of that seed of understanding, you doubt God and you doubt the Buddha.

p. 85 To “love our enemy” is impossible, because the moment we love him, he is no longer our enemy.

p. 88 Many of our young people are uprooted. They no longer believe in the traditions of their parents and grandparents, and they have not found anything else to replace them. Spiritual healers need to address this very real issue, but most simply do not know what to do. They have not been able to transmit the deepest values of their traditions, perhaps because they themselves have not fully understood or experienced them. When a priest does not embody the living values of a tradition, he or see cannot transmit them to the next generation. He can only wear the outer garments and pass along the superficial forms. When the living values are absent, rituals and dogmas are lifeless, rigid, and even oppressive. Combined with a lack of understanding of people’s real needs and a general lack of tolerance, it is little wonder that the young feel alienated within these institutions.

p.89  When young people come to Plum Village, I always encourage them to practice in a way that will help them go back to their own tradition and get rerooted. If they succeed at becoming reintegrated, they will be an important instrument in transforming and renewing their tradition.


From Words of My Perfect Teacher by Patrul Rinpoche translated by the Padmakara Translation Group with a foreword by the Dalai Lama, Yale 2011 p. 105  In particular, lamas and monks these days see no harm or wrong in doing business; indeed they spend their whole lives at it, and feel rather proud of their prowess. However, nothing debilitates a lama or monk’s mind more than business. Engrossed in his transactions, he feels little inclination to pursue his studies or tow work at purifying his obscurations—and anyway there is no time left for such things. All his waking hours until he lies down to sleep at night are spent poring over hi accounts. Any idea of devotion, renunciation or compassion is eradicated and constant delusion overpowers him. [plus ça change…]

p. 107 Phoney lama’s lies. These are all untrue claims to possess such qualities and abilities as, for example, to have attained the Bodhidattva levels, or to have powers of clairvoyance. Imposters nowadays have more success than true masters, and everyone’s thoughts and actions are easy to influence. So some people declare themselves masters or siddhas in an effort to deceive others. They have had a vision of a certain deity and made thanksgiving offerings to him, they claim, or they have seen a spirit and chastised it. For the most part these are just phoney lamas lies, so be [108] careful not to believe such cheats and charlatans blindly. Affecting as it does both this life and the next, it is important to place your trust in a Dharma practitioner whom you know well, who is humble and whose inner nature and outer behavior correspond.


Anonymous Wendy said...

Thank you for these posts of readings from these profound writers. Lots to sit with in silence. And to live.
Maggie do you have any idea when your second volume of "Silence:A User's Guide" will be published?

12:34 pm, July 28, 2015  
Blogger Maggie Ross said...

Thanks for your comment, Wendy. I don't know when vol 2 will be ready; I'm working on it. I was delayed by being away and then by being sick. Much better now.

3:19 pm, July 28, 2015  

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