21 May 2010
As you can probably tell by the title, today’s practice was not you regular 4I practice. Sure, it did start out with a regular equanimity/Tonglen practice but this time we had the option of going deeper, down to pristine awareness. Rather than “Boundless” Compassion or Loving Kindness, today we had the option to cultivate “Great” (Maha) Compassion/Loving Kindness. Although “boundless” sounds quite more grandiloquent, cultivating Mahakarunā or Mahamettā is something that has to be yearned at our deepest level of existance for it not to be just utterly hilarous or megalomaniacal. Alan gives a great introduction on how to see this from a non-megalomaniacal point of view, and explains taking on the task of “making it so” for all sentient beings and arousing our deepest motivation for it. I won’t pollute it further with my words, listen to Alan!
After the session, Alan spontaneously said one of the classic (beautiful) dedications of merit, and gave an English translation. We then went into some questions about Conciousness, the brain, scientific materialism, the problems with the current status quo, etc. At the very end Alan answered a question about doubt, grasping, noting the grasping, labeling, and commenting in regards to tje practice of Settling the Mind in its Natural State.
I just took this photo of a rainbow which was waiting for us across the sky as we left the teaching hall. It doesn’t do it much justice since the rainbow covered most of the sky, so someone will probably give me a better picture soon! This is what happens when you practice Mahakaruna ;)
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