Friday, October 22, 2010

Anthem to Meditation 24/40

Thus I had heard, Guatama Buddha was fasting upon one grain of rice a day for six months. He was pushing himself too hard. With great concentration and dedication to his meditative discipline, he became skin and bones. His skull almost protruded from his skin. When doing walking meditation, when trying to cross a tiny stream, he tripped and fell into the water and almost drowned. He struggled hard with his weakened body and finally carried himself to the back to solid ground. Looking at his reflection in the water, he saw that he discipline only carried him closer to physical death. "If I cannot easily cross this tiny stream," he thought to himself, "How can I cross the great of sorrow? How can I help liberate all sentient beings from their all sorrow?" At that moment, relaxed all effort, and in the silence of a receptive mind, the truth of the middle way dawned within his understanding. He saw that renouncing and struggling against all pleasure was not the way. He saw that indulging and trying to have the most pleasure possible was also not the way. He saw that becoming caring to himself and others, being sensitive to what is truly needed and truly nourishes, giving to himself and to others what is needed, no more and no less than what is needed, it was possible to grow beyond the grip of sorrow and attain supreme perfect enlightenment. He further reflected, "I have struggled with all the meditative tools that all my teachers have given me to work with, fighting experience of sorrow every moment, waging war against sorrow, storming its castle, scaling its walls, hammering through each and every barrier it placed in my path, all this effort has only exhausted me and sorrow still reigns upon this world, people are born in pain, experience loss of love, cry in grief when they lose those they love, one by one are killed by death, cry in agony when tortured and hurt, feel pain when harsh words are spoken to them, feel pain when they are deprived food, when they have limbs cut off, when disease befalls them, when wars destroy their villages, when monarchs make them slaves, when wild animals gnaw at their bodies, when robbers plunder their wealth, when earthquakes, floods, and fires wipe out their crops, and when meteors crash and annihilate vast regions of their lands. I realize that I do not even know what this thing called sorrow even is. I have been too busy fighting and resisting sorrow to ever feel what it truly is. What is this thing called sorrow? How does it arise, how does it abide, how does it change, and what makes it finally dissolve? What are the causes and conditions that makes sorrow thrive? What are the causes and conditions that allow sorrow to dissolve? Is sorrow necesary to human life, animal life, and cosmic life? Do all beings experience sorrow? Is it possible to cut the root of sorrow so deeply and so completely that it never arises ever again? Does sorrow serve any useful purpose? Can any positive purpose that sorrow has be replaced by something that does not have strain, agony, or hardship within itself? How can I understand what sorrow is? How can I penetrate its mystery and power to touch its essence?"

As Buddha silently contemplated his question, Tara disguised as the cowgirl Sujata magically appeared carrying rice boiled in sweet milk, a healing remedy, to bring the tired, ill, and worn out Buddha back to life. The Buddha was on the verge of dying, yet whenever anyone is on a sincere quest to find the truth of life, then life itself will bring what is needed, guard against the foolishness of our quest, bring us back on track, and heal us when needed. Tara, one with this wish of life, came to the Buddha, healed him, talked with him, and encouraged him. Fortified by this contact, the Buddha resolved, "I will not stop my meditation upon sorrow until I have attained supreme perfect enlightenment." With this confidence, born of Tara, he sat down in a perfect lotus, formed the mudra of perfect peace, turned his two physical eyes inward to his 3rd eye, and simply watched the movement of sorrow, without clinging or resisting anything, but reflecting everything perfectly, nonreactively, and impartially, like a mirror, curious as a child, as patient as a mature adult, and as sincere as a seeker of truth who knows that he or she does not know, and humble enough to learn.

He simply watched the movement of sorrow, saw the 12 nidanas in action, feeding each other, reinforcing each other. He saw his sense organs contact sense objects, activate samskaras in his subconscious mind, trigger an internal reaction, inspire craving, resistence, and delusion, breeding unconscious activity, giving rise to an isolated sense of self, forming a destiny of struggle, exhausting himself, feeling sickness, old age, death, and rebirth. His memory opened up. He saw lifetime after lifetime of cause and effect, linking all events within his lifestream, propelling him to an unknown future where even more sorrow was guaranteed. Little bursts of joy and hope kept alive his seeking, craving, grasping, possessing, and defending what he had found. Yet these gains were always transitory, were always taken away from him. He found he could not keep the people that he truly loved in his life. Although he would attract them back, lifetime after lifetime, each temporary loss was painful and every temporary meeting, no matter how joyful, had a subtle lining of sorrow because of the unconscious knowing that this joy would end. He saw memories of burying and cremating thousands upon thousands of loved ones, groaning and crying at their passing, and then seeking new loves to replace the old moves, feeling a deep aloneness within himself, wandering in worlds of sorrow, never finding more than temporary solace in the arms of a silently and slowly decaying lover, seeing body after body undergoing decay, death, cremation, wandering through the bardo, seeking rebirth into yet another body that is karmaically destined also to die.

Not so well known to some traditions, Tara came to him, made love to him five times. First through earth element love, grounding him in the simple essence of a humble earth life that could accept and live with transitoriness, accepting the Earthy humble woman who would be a devoted friend, taking refuge in each other, and being with each other. Then as a water element lover, playful, flowing, dancing, gently moving to tidal rhythms, ebbing and flowing with the moon, feeling harmony, flowing together. Then appearing as a fire element lover, passionate, intense, exciting, and electric, each surrendering to powerful intensity and letting each other be fully and totally overwhelmed, riding the energy wave into the unknown, so fully in present time and passion to not care where life was taking them, then exploding into the air element, expanding into joy, moaning, sounding, crying, moving this way and that, throbbing. Then as space element lovers, resting simply in snuggle space, feeling borderless warmth, being motionless, and simply being. In this fivefold element love dance, Tara initiated him, completed him, and lead him into the childhood sorrow of having lost his mother in her birthing of him. He deeply and fully cried, ended the cravings that emerged from his heart, sunk into the Earth, was held, and ended all separation from life. He no longer gave rise to any sense of separate self and all its dilemas of seeking. Tara kissed him and left him on his final day, blessed him as a spiritual teacher of humans, animals, hungry ghosts, asuras, and angels. He moved deeply into the depths of silence and emptiness within him, fell into the luminous levels of bliss, moved beyond all the worlds of form and formlessness, and found a deep and abiding sense of inner peace, beyond change and changelessness. When morning dawned in the 41st day, the planet Venus arose as the morning star, pulling him back out in the ordinary world of humans and animals, forests, oceans, and trees. Touching the morning star with his three eyes fully opened, he realized that he had attained supreme perfect enlightenment, and would soon contemplate how to serve, heal, and teach the human world, how to guide all sentient beings beyond sorrow. His body radiated a blessing energy into the world and was already inspiring people to move beyond their sorrows, a silent teaching vibrating within the sound of "ah", inviting people to let go, let go, truly let go, completely let go, letting go without strain or struggle, fall into their wounds, allowing life to fully heal all wounds, and then to awaken and rejoice in the wonder of being alive.

In deep meditation for 24 hours per day for 40 days, not wasting energy and so not needing to sleep for that time, not lost in thoughts and thought conflicts that would drain energy, having done karma mudra early in his life with Yasodhara, Jnana Mudra with White Tara, transmuting emotions through visionary elemental lovemaking, fear into wisdom (tram), sadness into compassion (hreeh), anger into creativity (ahh), jealousy into surrender (hung), and arrogance into enlightenment (ohm), and then eventually reaching mahamudra with the formless universe (ohm-ah-hung), Buddha awakens and abides in intuitive wisdom (ah), ever resting in the unborn, the unchanging, and the undying, maturing to show the 32 marks of perfect male and female hormonal balance, and eventually ending aging and death in his body (and then sacrificing his physical body to burn away a portion of the planetary karma and recreating another body, a light body, from the universal prana, and then guiding the healing of this planet from Mount of the Holy Vulture). The Buddha then starts his role as world teacher.

1 comment:

  1. Footnote1: The book SEXUAL SECRETS: THE ALCHEMY OF ECSTASY by Nik Douglas and Penny Slinger, Destiny Books ISBN 0-89281-011-4, pages 152-153, contains a condensed form of the five dakini initiations that Buddha received during his 40 day meditation, though with separate dakinis each having their turn, rather than Tara appearing in the form of each of them. This book quotes the Guhyasmaja Tantra as the source for this event and has this final paragraph: "Realizing that all these mystic forms of the Mother-goddess have come to aid him in his search for Liberation from the endless cycle of births and deaths, the Buddha enters the Samadhi state known as 'Diamond Glory Partaking of All Desires' and makes love with all of them simultaneously, practicing the arts of love he had perfected during his youthful years in his father's palace, the Buddha fulfills the desires of each of the Dakinis and they bring him to completion. Ascending in a five colored rainbow of effulgent light, they are transported to another realm." I have placed some seed mantra sounds near each of the emotional alchemies related to the element love dances. Tram is Earth, Hreeh is fire, Ahh is water, Hung is air, and Ohm is space. The seed mantras are those needed to transmute the corresponding emotional energy. The heaviness of sadness is lifted by hreeh fire. The fixating quality of anger is relaxed by ahh. The controlling seductive energy of jealousy is grounded by hung. The controlled fire of tram stimulates and grounds fear into a kind of trusting life. The impersonality of ohm dissolves the subtle separate ego sense back into natural mind.

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