11 Aug 2015
Alan explains the purpose of cultivating divine pride and merging our awareness with the mind of the guru. Divine pride is a fabrication, but a better one than we currently have. Low self esteem or high self esteem are both constructions. In this practice we “un-construct” the fabrication by melting it into emptiness, then we imagine our mind stream indivisible with the Buddha. This is the swift path but it’s slender and very subtle. We seek to dissolve not only the reified notion of self but to arise from emptiness with the identity of Padmasambhava. It’s like a holographic image. It can move and it has causal efficacy but it’s not there from its own side. Hold it with the lightness of a feather. You imagine like this until the reality bursts through and like a seed sprouting, the husk falls into the soil. Then pristine awareness manifests!
The meditation is on Settling the Mind.
After the meditation Alan added a footnote regarding the hierarchy of the three modes of knowledge in epistemology. First there’s knowledge based on authority, which is belief and better if it’s in accordance with reality! But in Buddhism even if you have studied, how much has that purified your mind? In science it’s enough for us to rely on knowledge based on authority, but in Buddhism we have to probe more deeply so we really know for ourselves. As we’re investing everything in the refuge of Dharma, it’s like investing in gold. We need to make sure it’s solid gold. Even if you ascertain knowledge through reason it’s not enough. You have to know for yourself. That’s the highest form of knowledge. That is realisation. And even beyond that, there’s acquired confidence which he likened to countersinking a nail that’s already flush.
Meditation starts at 15:55
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