B. Alan Wallace, 27 Aug 2014
We conclude the teachings on the transitional phase of living from the Vajra Essence with a meditation found in the text and a commentary on it. We practice the meditation as an exercise of prospective memory so that after death, in the bardo of becoming, we will recall our backup plan for becoming lucid and attaining enlightenment.
The crossing over practices of Dzogchen are done without visualization, but according to masters who have achieved this stage, primordial consciousness spontaneously appears as the absolute space of the great bliss of Akanistha with five of its aspects manifesting as the five Buddhas.
A primary tenet of Dzogchen is to not look for the Buddha outside yourself. Only when you cut through delusive appearances do you recognize who you are.
Meditation starts at 09:28
Olaso. Let’s go right into the meditation, and for this session you’ll want to be seated for the whole session.
Transcriptionist note: The Seven Line Prayer and Mantras (in Tibetan and English) and Guru Rinpoche Mantras (in Sanskrit) are written below.
The Seven Line Prayer and Mantras
HUNG ORGYEN YUL GYI NUP JANG TSAM HUNG
In the northwest frontier of Oddiyana,
PEMA GE SAR DONG PO LA
In the heart of a lotus
YAM TSEN CHOG GI NGÖ DRUP NYEY
Sits the one renowned as Padmasambhava,
PEMA JUNG NEY ZHEY SU DRAK
Who achieved the wondrous supreme siddhi,
KHOR DU KHAN DRO MANG PÖ KOR
And is surrounded by a host of many dakinis.
KYED KYI JE SU DAK DRUP KYI
Following in your footsteps, I devote myself to practice.
JIN GYI LAP CHIR SHEK SU SÖL
Please come forth and bestow your blessings.
GURU PEMA SIDDHI HUNG
Guru Rinpoche Mantras
OM āḥ hūṃ VAJRA GURU PADMA SIDDHI hūṃ
Oṃ āḥ hūṃ Vajra Guru Padma Tötreng Tsäl vajra
SAmayajaḥ siddhi phala hūṃ
[05:20] Now in order to receive the four empowerments, visualise at the crown of the head of Padmasambhava, the white syllable OM – imagine rays of light, white light emerging from this syllable and meet at the crown of your head, permeating your whole body, receiving the vase empowerment, purifying all negative imprints and obscurations of the body. From the red syllable Ah at the guru’s throat, imaging red rays of light, emerging, striking your own throat, and purifying all negative imprints and obscurations prevailing to speech, receiving the secret empowerment. From the syllable hum, at the guru’s heart emerging blue light rays, emerging from his heart striking your own heart, purifying all negative imprints and obscurations of the mind and receiving the wisdom gnosis empowerment of Padmasambhava. The syllable RI, at the guru’s naval chakra imagine red rays of light emerging striking your own navel chakra, purifying negative imprints and obscurations of body, speech and mind altogether, and receiving the word empowerment. In the future when we do this practice in the morning, you may receive these these four empowerment while you are reciting, the vajra guru mantra. In the conclusion invite the guru, Padmasambhava, indivisible from your own guru, indivisible from the mind of Buddha, your own personal deity or yidam, imagine the guru coming to the crown of your head, diminishing in size, facing the same direction as yourself, blissfully melting into the light and flowing down through the central channel, the avadhuti of your heart, with the guru’s body, speech and mind become indivisible from your own and remain in the state of total ease and relaxation and that awareness of the indivisibility with your own body, speech and mind with that of the guru Padmasambhava.
[9:35] Now we conclude the section on the transitional phase of living, and the Vajra Essence and the meditation shared there by Padmasambhava, by way of Dudjom Lingpa. And it is important that you occasionally train in the path of transference or phowa - the transference of consciousness in the following way: AH, imagine a white syllable ah on the crown of your head. And immeasurable masses of light emanated from it. In the actual self-appearing great buddha view of achinista – vast as the absolute space of phenomena, beautifully arranged and adorned is a great palace. From an AH in its center appears the original ground dharmakaya Samantabhadra, indigo, like a Lapis Lazuli mountain. Naked and unadorned, he sits cross-legged upon a lotus and moon. His hands are in a mudra, in meditative equipoise, and it blazes with the light of the signs and symbols of enlightenment. .
[13:00] The display of myriad of buddhafields are all presented in this kaya, this embodiment of Samantabhadra.
[13:30] Like a dream, instantly dissolving into the space of pristine awareness, your appearances and mental processes, being of one taste are indivisibly transferred to the absolute space of the greatest bliss of Akanishta. Before I give a bit of commentary, imagine that your environment are here or wherever you are. Your body, your mind, all of these ordinary appearances that constitute the world with which you are familiar and which we ever so easily reify, as if a dream is coming into an end and the whole dream dissolves right into the space of awareness. Imagine that the dream of this world, empty of inherent nature, dissolves into the appearance of Akanishta, this buddhafield, the field of Samantabhadra. There is none other than the embodiment of your own pristine awareness. In other words imagine this world with which you’re familiar dissolves and and utterly transforms into this pure realm, here and now. With the syllable Ah the three realms of all physical worlds and their sentient inhabitants dissolve into that buddhafield, becoming indivisible with it. Uttering Ah, recognise this and bring it to mind. Uttering Ah, imagine you acquire great confidence. Commentary. The symbol AH is the symbol of negation in all indo european languages, in Sanskrit as well as English and so on. It’s the symbol of negation of inherent nature in this context - emptiness of all phenomena. So mentally recite. “AH” “AH” “AH”, and as you recite this syllable, again imagine this entire universe that you you feel yourself to inhabit, all dissolving into this buddhafield of Akanishta, utterly transmuting the entire universe, all the sentient beings within in it, as well of course as your own self, your body, mind, your very identity.
[17:02] After the text, to the East imagine the vast and spacious buddhafield of Abhirati, filling the entire sky without leaving any space, white and luminous like a full moon-the colour of conch.
Commentary: East is the direction right in front of you. As you are now imagine yourself, to be there in that central buddhafield of Akanishta. Out in this vast space in front of you, to the East. Imagine this derivative of buddhafield of Abhirati-The buddhafield of Akshobhya, this splendidly white, radiant white in colour. With a palace in the center and in the center of the palace – buddha Akshobhya. The embodiment of mirror-like, primordial consciousness. The text - To the south imagine the vast and spacious buddhafield of Shrimat lazing throughout the entire sky, earth and everything in between, like the colour of gold. Commentary: South is the direction to your right. Whatever you are facing, it’s to your right. This vast buddhafield of Shrimat, the buddhafield of Ratnasambhava, the embodiment of primordial consciousness of equality. Again imagine the vastness, golden colour, the palace, the buddha in the center. As vast as you can imagine.
[19:45] The text: To the west imagine the vast and the spacious buddhafield of Sukhavati, red like the colour of ruby. So the west is the direction behind you. This radiant red buddhafield of Sukhavati-the buddhafield of Amitabha. The embodiment of primordial consciousness of discernment. The text: to the north imagine the buddhafield, Karma Pragbhoghana, like the colour of emerald with dimensions equal to the absolute space of phenomena. This buddhafield to your left. The buddhafield of Amoghasiddhi the primordial consciousness - all accomplishing primordial consciousness. The text: imagine yourself as a bodhisattva, imbued with power and might of primordial consciousness. Starting from the east, imagine that you proceed to each of these buddhafields like an arrow shot by a powerful archer. And imagine that you thrice, circumambulate the tathagatas, who are the lords of the buddha families, you made prostrations and immeasurable offerings and you receive empowerments, your teachings and receive oral transmissions and blessings. The commentary: imagine that one by one, to the east, the south, west and north, project yourself as bodhisattva, come into the presence of the Buddha, each of these four realms. Continue the visualisation as just explained.
[25:00] Once you are finished be, imagine as we continue with the text, imagine that you then return to the buddhafield of Ghanavyuna in the centre, another name here for Akanishta. Where the dharmakaya, the buddha of the original ground is present in the space in front of you. So the buddha in the center is according to the commentary of course is Samanthabhadra. Ghanavyuna is the pure realm of Vairocana. The embodiment of the primordial consciousness of the absolute space of phenomena or the dharmadatu. We return to the centre, where too we may offer circumambulations, make offerings and imagine there too that you receive all transmissions, empowerments, teachings. Then release the visualization, and for a moment simply rest in the open expansive of awareness. Awareness illuminating itself, resting in its own place.
[27:57] We conclude with the text. These are the teachings called transfering your own appearance to a buddhafield and entering therein. In the intermediate period, when you have recognised that you have died, simply by bringing this to mind the appearances of the intermediate period will shift to those of buddhafield and you will achieve liberation. That concludes the teachings on the transitional phase of living. Let’s continue practicing quietly just for a few minutes. Resting the awareness in its own place and maintaining the peripheral awareness of the in and out flow of the breath, noting the duration of each one.
[34:12] Oh la so. In the practice of lucid dreaming, which has a lot in common with but certainly is not identical with dream yoga, kind of an elementary dream yoga. Uh, the core ability that has to be cultivated, otherwise you really can’t do it is what I call prospective memory or resolve, future oriented resolve, and that is as you are falling asleep, you develop the strong resolve to remember something in the future. And for example, I’ll try to be brief our time here is very short, but you look for anomalies, as you’re falling asleep, you look for anomalies that tonight after I’ve fallen asleep if I see anything out of the ordinary like maybe I’m not in Phuket, if you’re here, I’m someplace else. Or anything else, you see people flying or anything like that, or if you see one of your dream signs. You look, you look to see if, you know, for a sign that you might in fact be dreaming, and then you do a state check. We’ll talk about this later, but you do a state check to determine with certainty whether or not you’re dreaming. And then once you have recognized that you’re dreaming, oh then you start dream yoga, or you start a secular practice of exploring the world of lucid dreaming, which is of course utterly fascinating. But it’s all about prospective memory, and when in speaking a bit poetically or how do you, metaphorically, when as you are falling asleep, when you’ve died from the waking state, from being in this physical world of Phuket or wherever people in the podcast are listening from, you know, speaking just loosely, when you’ve died from this realm and you’ve been reborn, a very brief rebirth, in a dream, right? Because that’s kind of what it’s like you don’t even have your same body anymore. You don’t even necessarily look the same. You don’t even have necessarily the same gender, there’s no you’ll even be a human being in your dream, right. I mean really you kind of died from this physical corporeal existence. And now you’re in this other realm, right? This dream realm, this dream reality. So the first thing is to recognise that you have shifted the domain of reality that you are experiencing. Recognizing that, and then, then start your practice, right?
[36:28] Well, in a very, very similar way, when we do, literally die from this world, the continuum of conscious continues on, and we find ourselves in this bardo of becoming, this intermediate period or intermediate state. The first thing in that bardo of becoming, transitional phase of becoming, the most important thing first of all is to recognise that you are dead. Uh, that’s not necessarily so obvious, right? Uh it apparently happens many many times, that during the early period, the early phase of this bardo, you think you are still alive. And you may actually see people that you knew in your past life, and as in the movie “The Sixth Sense” you may sit down and have conversations with people, and they don’t answer. They’re so rude. And then you see them maybe even talking about your death and you find - “Wait, wait, wait, wait, I’m here, I’m here, I’m here, .” and they all ignore you. And so it gets more and more disconcerting. Until finally sooner or later, better sooner than later, you recognize, “Ah ha, uh, I’m dead.” And this has to be the bardo.
[37:40] And so as the text said there, as soon as you recognize you’re dead then you have this as a possibility, this is your backup plan, right? Rather than just kind just cruising through and being lucid in the bardo, which is enormously comparable or analogous to being lucid in a dream. In fact, in traditional dream yoga practice, this is the primary reason we’re practicing dream yoga. It’s a dress rehearsal for being dead and utterly transmuting your whole experience in the bardo to your great advantage, and achieving liberation in the bardo. And so here is a very very simple practice - once you’ve recognised that you’re dead, then recognise that your existence there in the bardo, it’s not material, your body, you seem to have a body, you can touch it and so forth in the bardo, but your body has no materiality to it right? It has no molecules to it. And so you’re in a different dimension of existence, which is malleable, which is malleable like a dream. This waking experience for us until you enter into relativistic psychology, you know, as long as you have a pretty ordinary mind, this reality is not very malleable, right? If you’d like it to be sunny right now, well, good luck with that, you know. Probably can’t do anything at all. And that’s just true for many things.You can’t shift your health, you can’t just say “I’m tired of being sick, be gone.” you know. So this is the disempowered mind, the non-relativistic mind, with no Samadhi, then we’re kind of stuck with what we’ve got. And we try to manage it here and there, here and there, but there’s not a whole lot we can do, right?
[39:13] Whereas in a dream once you become lucid, well, the limits are only the limits of your imagination. Those are the only limits-on your ability to transmute, to transform the dream including just making it vanish like - Poof! You know, and just having it dissolves into the substrate. Really the only limits are your own imagination, right? And so, comparably, when you’re in the bardo, in this non-material realm of the bardo, this intermediate phase that hasn’t locked into it, almost like a stem cell, the whole existence there, is like a stem cell, it hasn’t muted, it hasn’t gotten configured, to be a human realm or deva realm, or Preta realm or anything else, it’s a floater. It’s waiting, like in Chinese checkers,you remember where kind of the ball rolls around and then falls into a hole? You’ve all seen that, right? Well you’re kind of rolling around waiting to fall into a hall. “Oh! Gonna be human.” “Oh you are going to be animal.” “Oh you are going to be deva, whatever." But you’re none of the above, right now. You’re in flux. This is really a transitional phase. Because you actually don’t belong right now in any of the six realms of existence, which means, potentially you can go anywhere. You can just going to drop into, propelled by, your karma, you can drop in anywhere, right? Or you can become lucid and say - I don’t think I want to drop in at all. And he just gave you the key. Imagine dissolving, you’re in the bardo. Imagine then dissolving, everything there in the bardo into emptiness, and then transmuting it. You can do this if you’re lucid. There is no reason objectively why you can’t do that, right? Then just transmute, your whole experience there in the bardo by the power of your imagination, which you remember while you’re still alive on this state. Remember that, and then transmute it. And just transmute where you are into this Akanishta-this pure realm of Samantabhadra, and then each of the ones to the east, south, the west, the north. And then perform these practices. He said and then you may be liberated right there. You have actually shifted your whole local , your environment into a buddhafield. And then you may become enlightened right there.
[41:32] So, even if one doesn’t have full confidence in this, like total belief - I absolutely believe it, why not try it? What have you got to lose? Why not give the benefit of the doubt why not say “Hey, I don’t know”. The scientists sure as heck don’t know. If you are in the bardo, and you did have a cell phone, that could phone your nearest scientist and say “What do I do now?” They’ll say “Oh! Shit! We didn’t see that coming. Find somebody else, wrong number. And don’t call again, we didn’t want to hear this.” [laugher] You know, so you called the wrong number, they are not going to help you out there.
[42:13] But for people who’ve explored the bardo in detail, come back and reported on it, in detail, and there are many, they just don’t happen to be scientists. If you want to know about molecules, DNAs, cells, asteroids, galactic clusters, supernovae, photosynthesis and so forth , don’t ask a buddhist. Unless it’s a buddhist who happens to be a botanist, zoologist, and so forth and so on. Don’t ask, you’re going in the wrong place. If you have a problem with your teeth, don’t got to a lama. Probably they will say “ What are you coming to me for? Wrong number. The dentist is down there, that’s where I go. I take refuge in the local dentist right there, why don’t you, you know, screw your head on tight and go to the dentist, you idiot. What do you come here to for a lama for? And don’t ask me to do a moe”. Oh man! People over using moes big time I think. Oh! Lama, what dentist shall I go to? For my tooth. Oh!” Get a grip! So final point before we break, something I found quite fascinating, I have received on a number of occasions teachings on the final phase of Dzogchen called the direct crossing over into spontaneous actualization. I won’t speak about it in any length at all, I will simply say this, that the practice entails no visualisation, anymore than Trekcho -the cutting through to the original purity of pristine awareness, there’s no visualization there, at all. It’s just being present, right. So you don’t visualise rigpa and then somehow by visualising rigpa have a placebo effect and realise rigpa. That’s not the way it is. Rigpa is not some little fabrication of your intellect, right, then you somehow realise by believing it. It’s beyond all. Rigpa, pristine awareness is beyond all conceptual frameworks. So you can’t be tricky and imagine it and then you know realize what you’ve imagined. . But what’s quite interesting about the thogyal this thogyal of the direct crossing over, is once again. There is no visualisation. Uh, as such you’d have to say really there’s nothing really buddhist about the practice. That is you look, what are you doing? I mean, okay there’s postures and gazes but you can put, anybody can do these postures.
It’s not really a buddhist posture. The gaze is not a buddhist gaze. And then you do the practice. And there’s really, just no, there’s no element of culture in it. Like oh - this is 15th century India, oh this is 19th century Tibet, oh this is whatever. There’s no culture in it, at all. Zero.
[44:42] You’re not visualizing anything, so then you’re not really putting anything into it. It is simply, it is being attentive and seeing what comes to mind. And what comes to mind, are these spontaneous displays of the 5 buddhafields and 5 buddhas. I’ll say that much. I think I haven’t broken my Samaya. But what I find so remarkable about this, is they’re coming up spontaneously, not because you are a buddhist and you’ve learned all the different colours and hand movements and so forth and so on. They’re just coming up spontaneously, right. That really does seem to be about these five buddhafields and each one of them of course is a archetypal embodiment of the corresponding facet. It’s the best term I think. Facet of primordial consciousness. So primordial consciousness is not by nature in englobials. That’s why I don’t really like primordial wisdom or 5 primordial consciousnesses as if they are different things like five people in a room. There’s primordial consciousness, that’s Yeshe, right. Then we do see plus five facets of primordial consciousness. I will say very similarly to white light that goes through a prism. There are some facets of the one light that is there manifesting as mirror like primordial consciousness, like Akshobhya to the East.
[46:06] Primordial consciousness of equality Ratnasambhava. To the south, primordial consciousness with discernment. And Sukhavati, Amitabha, to the west, the all accomplishing primordial consciousness of Omoghasiddhi, emerald green in colour. These are archetypal but really seem to be, I mean, I’m convinced, you don’t have to be but I am convinced, these are transcultural, archetypal, transcendent embodiments or personifications of these facets, of the one central, primordial consciousness of the absolute space of phenomena, dharmadatu. So there is one, but the manifestations, the effulgences, the derivative effulgences in these four Facets coming out of the white in the center. And so he’s having is visualize here, if not, frankly I’m just going to say it, you don’t have to believe anything I say. I am going to say it. This is not a Tibetan Buddhist visualization. Tibetan Buddhist means it’s Tibetan, and it’s Buddhist. And Tibet was not always Buddhist, and Buddhism wasn’t always Tibetan. It became Tibetan Buddhism when it went to Indian and got acculturated right? Then it became Tibetan Buddhism, like Zen Buddhism, Chinese Buddhism, Thai Buddhism. Buddhism came and then assimilated and took on a Thai aspect, which is perfect.
[47:39] And now Buddhism in various ways is taking on a certain modern aspect, as well it should do. So it feels at home. But this is not a Tibetan Buddhist visualization, I will say. There’s something deeper, it’s transcultural. It transtime and space. It really does seem to be utterly primordial. So final point in this regard, I spoke at quite some length about faith yesterday and I made only a brief edition today. And that is when we look at religious faith, whether it’s Christian, or it’s Hindu, Buddhist and so forth. When we look at religious faith, over all, primarily I think, and I am a religious scholar so I want to be careful, not make silly oversimplifications. But the faith does tend to be in something other. And Jesus, if you are a Christian, you are not Jesus, but you have faith in Jesus, you have faith in the trinity—Father, son and Holy Ghost. They’re not you; you’re not the trinity. You’re not Jesus. You’re not Abraham, you have faith in prophets as well. You’re not them, they’re someone else. And heaven is not you, heaven is a place you hope to go to in the future. You have faith in that, you have faith in many things that are outside of you. Right? And there’s nothing wrong with that, I don’t disparage that whatsoever.
[48:57] So people have different faiths, different religions. Have different faiths, they envision the deity, heaven, the afterlife and so forth in various ways, but it’s faith. It’s something outside of themselves and the information comes from outside. From a prophet, from the son of god, from the Bible, from the Koran, from the Bhagavad Gita or what have you. And of course, same thing occurs in the Buddhism. People read the sutras they hear teachings from their lamas. And they hear about Sukhavati, they hear about this, they hear about that. And it can really be very very similar. Very, very similar. Religious faith can look a lot, very similar, from Christianity to Buddhism to Hinduism to even Taoism, and so on.. So there is that type of faith. And likewise in science, not the same, but not entirely different. Once again you’re having a faith in someone else that is you have confidence in the last, let’s say last 400 years of rigorous scientific research and the many textbooks that have come of that of consensual knowledge, about geology, about astronomy, DNA and so forth and so on. Do you have some confidence in these people? You weren’t there, you didn’t do it. These are other people. But do you think they are just a bunch of bozos, coming out and just coming up with one crazy idea after another and they all agreeing because they’re stupid? Or do you feel they did really rigorous research with good technology, a lot level of high level peer review and came out with consensual knowledge that’s worthy of deep respect? Well, you know where I stand, I have a lot of respect for science. Like the scientists themselves, I do not believe it’s infallible knowledge but I think there’s a great deal of very valuable knowledge there that deserves respect. And so then likewise faith in your professors, your universities, your laboratories and so forth. So these are all again, confidence in something outside of yourself. Outside of yourself.
[50:47] The same thing of course can occur in Buddhism. My lama’s over there, the teaching, there’s the texts there. There’s the, there, there, there. All of that has its place, but what I find enormously interesting and I mean, really, it’s more than interesting. That’s a very weak adjective. Um, profoundly compelling, and that’s still too weak. Is when we come to Dzogchen, clearly there can be faith in one’s lama, there’s a rule for that, and that lama is somebody else, than you, it’s that person over there is maybe a Tibetan, maybe a Mongolian, maybe Canadian, whatever. So that’s someone else, so and you’re are reading the Dzogchen so clearly there’s something outside there. But the core faith, the core faith in Dzogchen practice, is not in someone outside of you. In fact when we received the empowerment from Ganden Tulku Rinpoche, just few weeks ago, you were there, yeah? He said here’s your one samaya, people wanting, all, a lot of people were writing - if i come, what’s the commitment? What’s the commitment? I don’t want to take on more commitments you know. Freaking out, ring a bell? And so they didn’t want to get in over their head, which we totally respected. And so what’s the commitment now that we have received the empowerment? He said “OK. One samaya. Right, Jennie? One samaya. Don’t look for Buddhas outside of yourself. ” The only samaya. So where’s your faith then? In the guru? Maybe different gender, same gender, older, younger than yourself? Or somebody from Bhutan. Then you are looking outside of yourself. Tsah! You just broke your samaya. [laughter]
[52:27] Your faith has to be in yourself. And so when we hear these teachings, on Samanthabhadra, we hear the teaching on pristine awareness, these buddhafields, they’re talking about ourselves. They are telling us something about ourselves that we may not have known. So where does the faith come from? Because of the charisma, the purity, the compassion, the wisdom of the lama you see over there? You can if you like, but that’s not the faith of Dzogchen. The faith in Dzogchen is really fundamentally -the faith is coming from the depths of your own existence. And it’s faith in itself. It’s the faith stemming from pristine awareness, affirming its own existence and it’s own effulgences, effulgences, it’s own displays. So the faith in Dzogchen is autobiographical. It’s self referential. And I have some experience of it. Really because this is what triggered me and many of you know this story . and I will make it really short, we’re out of time. But the first book I have ever read, I ever encountered on Tibetan Buddhism was on Dzogchen. 20 years old, had virtually no background in buddhism. Picked up the Tibetan book on the Great Liberation, teaching by Padmasambhava. Read through it. Understood almost nothing. Really, just totally over my head. And by the time I finished reading the book, I thought that’s what I wanted to dedicate the rest of my life to. At least. This life, future lives whatever, but that’s it. That’s it. Now that was not coming out of my intellect. Because that would just have been stupid blind faith. And I don’t think I’m stupid and I just don’t have much ability for blind faith. It wasn’t that that I found - Oh, this is so compelling, this is really interesting, yes I definitely want to follow it. It wasn’t. It was just it spoke to it resonated with something inside me. It was just beyond intellect, but it was deeper than the intellect. Philosophers change their views. Hilary Putnam adopted one view then another view in the latter part of life. Wittgenstein, one view than later Wittgenstein. Scientists shift, you know, perspective. Einstein’s first paper was that his undergraduate thesis, it was on a way of measuring the ether. That was his first research project. How to measure the ether? He’s most famous for completely demolishing any notion of the ether with his special relativity theory. So, yeah, everybody believed in the ether when he was finishing his undergraduate degree. And in 1905 he blew it out of the water, it was - no survivors. You know. The ether was completely blown away by him, but he started by “here is how you can measure the ether.” You know. So scientists change, philosophers change and so forth. Because their faith, their object of faith differs. But here, the origin of the faith, the object of the faith are the same. And it’s outside of time, it’s outside of culture. So that’s the type of faith. It’s faith in yourself. That there’s more to you that meets the eye. More to you than your gender, your personal history, your personality. There is more to you than that. That’s not insignificant, but there’s more to you than that. There’s more to you than the substrate consciousness. And you haven’t known yourself, that you cut through, hunh, let alone your body and ordinary mind.
[56:10] Cut through the substrate consciousness. It’s only when you’ve cut through that, that you actually come to know who you are and always have been. It’s not somebody you become. Always have been. So therefore it’s said, there’s one fundamental difference between Buddha’s and sentient beings, unenlightened sentient beings, right? Buddhas know who they are and sentient beings don’t. So it’s really all about knowing who we are. It’s that simple. And having faith. But the faith doesn’t come from intellect, it doesn’t come from learning. This type of faith. It’s not like the ordinary religious faith, it’s certainly not like scientific faith. Not religious, nor scientific, nor philosophical. Something transcending all of. So there we are, something like that. So let’s continue practicing.
Transcribed by Kaye Yuan
Revised by Cheri Langston
Final edition by Rafael Carlos Giusti