The Mind Illuminated archive

Tonglen Meditation – 17 Jan 2010


Full talk with introduction on Tonglen:

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Culadasa: [00:00:00] I was like Connie. D did you have a project failure with, did you want

Student: to do a particular meditation?

Culadasa: Oh to to do an introduction, explaining people what, this is, what we're trying to do, and maybe we can talk a little bit about how it works

Student: and why we're doing it. Okay. Yes. And then if you want to have your questions and your usual thing after that, this long take a long time.

The meditation, but low Jong actually means developing the good heart and it's cause everybody can hear me even and seeing all of this suffering that's going on in Hayden is it's what we see in the desire realm, all of this. We S we've seen it with it. Tsunamis. We've seen it with new Orleans.

We've seen it, it just keeps coming and coming. And that's the desire realm that we live in. And we see all this suffering of suffering, even though. We may feel are our own lives are beautiful. And most of us, I think, feel that we have beautiful and bountiful lives.

There's still the suffering of the sickness, old age and death, but that we all have to go through. So the Lojong and the Tom Lynn practices which have been developed. R to develop compassion and love for the fact that we're all in the same boat, we're all the same. We're all going to suffer in some way or another.

And it's to help us understand that. What we see in our world is all coming from our own minds, from our own projections. And that there's this other dementia of this other world where everything is pure and perfect. And we just are not able to see it. I know all of, all of this, but what I, when I do this meditation, this taking on the suffering of others, it's not that, it's what I feel a lot of joy because I feel.

I'm taking that projection out there of all that suffering into my own heart, opening my heart, instead of closing it, I can't stand to see these things. That's the way we often do. When we see homeless, hungry people, we often close our hearts and turn away. We don't really want to see it. We really don't want to see.

What's on television or it's, it scares us. And we shrink because we don't want it. We want to deny it. I live in a good place and I'm glad I'm not there. That kind of thing. I hope it doesn't come to me, but we don't. We forget that it's us. It's all us. That we're all in this.

Both together and we all have to reach this pure realm together. So I feel it's a great joy to take this suffering into myself and change it into something else and to make it, to send it out as something else to send it out into rebuild. And to send it out, into creating the world that we want to see and that we know exists if we can, if we could see it.

So that's the introduction and Connie is a wonderful Lord young teacher and it could lead us into the meditation. I should also ask if there were any questions about that.

Culadasa: Could you explain a little more, I want to do what we're actually going to do and why we're doing it.

Student: If you'd like to like her I'll do it.

So as a Laker said, And John had said two weeks ago and we have a, our minds, it's like a bubble. We have a, of what we can see of the entire one, what is reality? And if we're seeing pain and suffering, that's part of our reality. And it's, we have seeds for that. We have seeds for destroying the land and causing harm to others and seeds for greed that we just need to get rid of.

If we can get rid of those. We can start to perfect the world. We do it just simply here on the cushion in our meditation. It started this whole thing started with [00:05:00] Mary Beth, doing it on the cushion and wanting to do it with more people that smile steel can, everybody can learn in life speaking too quietly.

So Mary Beth started with doing a Tong line practice and felt that. Just out of that timeline, Pratt practice felt she wanted to move to something bigger. And that's the seed that you plant in doing this kind of meditation. It moves you to action. It moves you to perfect your world. It moves you to reach a place where you never want to do anything to harm anybody else, which also feeds back into your meditation practice, where you are able to reach stillness better, where you're actually able to see emptiness directly because of the fact that your compassion and your open heart has brought joy and then bliss to your being, which gets you to that place where you can see.

The ultimate reality. So this practice is really pertinent to being able to get to stillness and being able to change the environment around you. Even though it's just done here on the cushion, as you, as I said, Mary Beth had one meditation, she said something to her friend Alegra and then it happened that everybody hears coming to meditate and try to remove the suffering that we're seeing in our world.

So the practice itself is John said, it's, this one is called Tomlin. And it's part of a greater practice, a group of practices called , which are mine training. Getting your mind used to having an open heart. And these practices all historically in, they came from the Kadaba was in Tibet around, I think it was around about 900.

And they were wandering yogis who they weren't great teachers in S in the sense that they wrote an awful lot of books or anything like that, they just went and practiced. And they did this to the point. And then these things were passed down, usually mouth to ear and not really written down.

So this is one of the practices today that one of my teachers over at diamond mountain head has taught me and I've had passing on to her Laker. So first of all, You have to open your heart. It's like you're said you can't hide away from it. So what you want to do first, what we really want to do is go in and pull up every picture that we have seen in our minds about that suffering in Haiti or, and we can also, you could do it for Afghanistan.

And those are man created disasters and Iraq or. Haiti right now is at the forefront, but you go in and you open your mind up to every bit of suffering that you can imagine is happening there. Every bit of it. And then you're just, you take that away. You pull it away in the form of black smoke into yourself.

But the very first thing you could do to make yourself even more powerful, you take on the form of a very holy being someone that is very like your holy teacher. And that, that adds power to your being somebody that's already, that you see as already being pure. And when you take that in, you burn it away and then we begin to give back everything.

We give away everything so that in the end, literally there is no self left. Okay. So if you'd like, or if you have more questions, we can begin. Are you going to read it? I'll lead it. Yeah. It's a led meditation. There's only way to do it

Culadasa: a little bit and say the same thing that Connie said. It was a little different where it's, so that connected with some of the things that we talked about before.

You all have the Buddha nature in you. That's what you're trying to reveal and bringing

Student: out. And for this practice,

Culadasa: what you're imagining that you are a Buddha, the Buddha nature is already come forward

Student: right now

Culadasa: to the extent that you know that you're still. The person that you normally thank yourself of yourself.

Abs remember we're all interconnected, every single thought and every single intention that you have as unforeseeable consequences, what we're going to do here is more powerful than most of our ordinary thoughts and intentions. And it's fine to have consequences. You can't predict them. You can imagine what form it's going to take.

But we're all connected, so it can't not have a result. And so become that Buddha that you already are. And the Buddha nature is going to verify this suffering. It's like a loving mother takes in the pain of the child and converts it into love and gives it.[00:10:00]

Student: Yeah,

the disc

that works. Okay. All right. So bring your awareness or just get yourself comfortable. And bring your awareness to the tip of your nose and watch the air, the sensation at the tip of the nose as the air moves out. And then back in.

Carefully see yourself as a Buddha inside you have a body that's like a rainbow. And insight is just pure light, pure, beautiful mind,

expensive.

Feel it with the ultimate company.

Ultimate love

starting at the area between your eyebrows and about an inch behind them. Channel that runs and it is just exquisitely illuminated it, the color of red gold. And that channel is about the size of a drinking straw or a straw that you'd get from Donald's.

It runs up to the crown of your head and inside the outline of your body.

At about the place where your heart would be various, a beautiful rose.

It is that compassion you have

within the roses.

Wisdom.

The island of Haiti. Port-au-Prince

you see the buildings decimated,

People crushed beneath them.

You see a child crying for.

And you see a mother who's lost her children.

You see the kindness of all the beings who are trying to get supplies to those who need them.

You see the broken bone.

You feel the thirst,

you feel the laughs

home, any structure government last, a friend.[00:15:00]

Lots of food,

lots of dreams and hopes.

Husbands desperately trying to find their families. Through our lives beneath the rebel.

People sitting at the side of the road in shock.

You see the supplies that have been flown in to the generosity of other countries that are sitting there going to waste because they can't get to the people who need.

You see the exhaustion on the faces at the doctors and nurses in the hospitals that can't do what they need to do because they haven't got any supplies,

not even have a building around.

You hear the cries people in other countries who have lost loved ones down there. And there's from Canada just arrived

and crushed beneath.

The family bewildered we lost, you can,

and you see the one Reese filthy. There's just nothing to be had. And people running to grab whatever they can possibly take. That's not theirs.

And you'd start to see that. Just so oily black smoke and begin to draw it away from that island. With every breath that you take, you draw all that pain and all that suffering towards your beautiful Buddha nature. To hear incredibly open, compassionate, loving, kindness, your heart.

Got closer to you.

You couldn't take it inside you. And when it touches your wisdom, your diamond, you're just going to burn it up. You have that.

Hold it beneath your nostrils is a tar Lark or a black ball initially. And then with the intention to stri all the suffering

and it's grilled and the intention to take all living beings to a place beyond pain. Drive in and have it touch the diamond and burn it up completely so that there's nothing

left,

Student: but pure white smoke.

And now you're going to give back every one of your pure element, the earth element within you. The element of hardness begin by giving them. Out of that element of hardness, you give them smoother roads. You give them trucks, you'd give them food, you killed them, hospitals. It gives them gurneys to give them pets.

How did that element do you give them someplace? A roof over their heads,

your kids I'm loving arms for the channel that has no parents

putting our homes to tow us. Who've lost sons and daughters and husbands and wives.

Do you [00:20:00] have need their bones

with your element Oscars?

You gives some cool trees, shade.

You're kicking beautiful temples in churches, in places to pray

and give them beautiful homes better than they ever had.

Oh, with your perfect element department. Element of earth.

And with your element of water liquidity, you give them pure water.

Cubism clean water life with you, give blood supplies and any liquid that they need to nourish their body.

And then with your element is fire your fire.

You give them what they need. Cook with sheep to come. Energy, they need to cool themselves with,

can we get to run review? To hear music

was your windmill. I mean that pure Buddha wind element,

you're giving them more of movement. So things get to where they need to.

You give them thoughts of loving kindness.

You give power to those who would be leaders to rise up and be leaders for them.

Do you give power to those who would be teachers to rise up and be teaching?

Maybe it would be spirit spiritual God's to rise up and be spiritual guides.

You give your calming wind element to those who are anxious

and give it to those who are feeling.

You take away all of their anger

and fills them with compassion

and the desire to help each other.

Palm trees, right? Growing food crowing in the hillsides.

It's at paradise. Now

children have teachers,

families have meaningful work.

There are spiritual guides. There's leisure time. There's. There is music. Here's dance,

they're friends, dares house,

and now you give them your flesh.[00:25:00]

Just keep. It's every kind being has ever given us much to eat. Give them arc flash street.

Can I get your skin?

Make clothing for them?

And 58 in the Springs, but there's nothing but sure. Beautiful Buddha, mark.


Automated transcription

I was like, Connie did... Did you have a a particular? Did you want to do a particular meditation? Yeah well, to to to do in the introduction explaining people, what this is what we're going to do yeah. And maybe we can talk a little bit about how it works. Know why we're reject. Okay. Yes. Yeah. And then if you if you want to have your questions and and your usual thing after that. This won't take a long time to the meditation. But low jong actually means developing the good heart. And it's because everybody can hear me.

And seeing all of this suffering that's going on in haiti is it's like what we see in the desire realm all the time. We we've seeded that with its tsunami, we've seen it with New Orleans. We've seen it. It just keeps coming and coming and coming and that's the desire realm that we live in and we see all this suffering of suffering suffering suffering. Even though we may feel our our own lives are are beautiful and most of us, I think feel that we have beautiful and powerful lives. There's still the suffering of the sickness old age and death that we all have to go through.

So the lo in the Tong Practices which have been developed are to develop compassion and love for the fact that we're all in the same boat. We're all the same we're all going to suffer in some way or another. And it's to help us understand that what what we see in our world is is all coming from our own minds from our own projections. And that there's this other other dimension of this other world where everything is pure and perfect, and we just are not able to see it. I know all of you know all of this, but what what I when I do this meditation this taking on the suffering of others, it's not that what I I feel a lot of joy because I feel I'm taking that projection out there of all that suffering.

Into my own heart, opening my heart instead of closing it I can't stand to see these things. That's the way we often do when we see homeless hungry people we. Often close our hearts and and turn away. We don't really want to see it. We really don't wanna see what's on television. Or it it's it scares us and we shrink because we don't want to we want to deny it. Well, I live in a good place, and I'm glad I'm not there. You know, sort of that kind of thing. I hope it doesn't come to me. But we don't we forget that it's us it it's all us that we're all we're all in this boat together, and we all have to reach this pure together.

So I feel it's a great joy to take this suffering into myself and change it into something else. And to to make it to send it out as something else to send it out into rebuilding. And to send it out into creating the world that we want to see. And that we know exists if we can if we could see it. So that's that's sort of the introduction. And Connie is is a wonderful lord John teacher and what could lead us in into the meditation. But I should also ask there were any questions about that. Could you explain a little more I wanna do what we're actually going to do and why we're doing it?

If you'd like a like or, I'll do it. So as lakers said, and John had said two weeks ago, and we have a our minds, it's like a bubble. We have a what we can see of the entire... What what is reality And if we're seeing pain and suffering, that's part of our reality. And it's... We have seeds for that. We have seeds for destroying the land and and and causing harm to others and seeds for greed that we just need to get rid of. If we can get rid of those, we can start to perfect the world. We do it just simply here on the cushion in our meditation.

It started this whole thing started with Mary Beth doing it on the cushion and wanting to do it with more people. That small steve, can even anybody hear sorry I speaking to quietly? So Mary D started with doing a a Tong practice and felt that she just out of that Tong practice felt she wanted to move to something bigger, and that's the seat that you plant in doing this kind of meditation. It moves you to action. It moves you to perfect your world. It moves you to to reach a place where you never wanna do anything to harm anybody else.

Which also feeds back into your meditation practice where you are able to reach stillness better where you're actually able to see emptiness directly because of the fact that your compassion and your open heart has brought joy and then bliss to your being, which gets you to that place where you can see the ultimate reality. So this practice is really pertinent to being able to get to stillness and being able to change the environment around you. Even though it's just done here on the cushion. As as I said, Mary Beth had one meditation she said something to her friend leg.

And then it happened that everybody hears is coming to meditate and try to to remove the suffering that we're seeing in our world. So the practice itself, is John said it's this one is called Tong, and it's part of a greater group of practices called Lo, which are mind training, getting your mind used to having an open heart. And these practices all historically, they came from the Into bats around I think it was around about nine hundred. And they were wandering Y who they weren't great teachers in in the sense that they wrote an awful a lot of books or anything like that.

They just went in practice. And they did this to the point and then these things were passed down. Usually, you know, mouth to ear and not really written down. So this is one of the practices today that one of my teachers over Diamond Mountain had has taught me and i passing on to An. So first of all, You have to open your heart. You like said, you can't hide away from it. So what you want to do first, what we really want to do is go in and pull up every picture that we have seen in our minds about that suffering in haiti, or and we can also you could do it for Afghanistan and you...

I mean, those are man created disasters and Iraq or you know... But haiti right now is at the forefront, but you go in and you open your mind up to every bit of suffering that you can imagine is happening there. Every bit of it. And then you're just you take that away. You pull it away in the form of black smoking to yourself. But the very first thing you could do to make yourself even more powerful, you take on the form of a very holy being, someone that is very, like your holy teacher. And that that adds power to your being.

Somebody that's already that you see is already being pure. And when you take that in, you burn it away, and then we begin to give back everything. We give away everything so that in the end, literally, there is no self left. Okay. So if if you'd like or if you have more questions, we can begin. We're gonna read it. I'll lead it. Yeah. It's a lab meditation. There's that it's only way to do it. And it just add a little bit and say the same thing that Connie said in little different words so that connected with some of the things that we talked about with work.

You all have the buddha nature in you that's what you're trying to reveal and bring out. And for this practice. What you're I imagine that you... You you are Buddha that that buddha nature has already come forward. Right? Now to the extent that you know that you're still the person that you normally think yourself of yourself have. Remember we're all interconnected every single thought and every single intention that you have as un consequences. What we're gonna do here is more powerful than most of our ordinary thoughts and intentions and it's fine to have consequences you can't predict them.

You can imagine what form that's gonna take. But we're all connected. So it can't not have a result. And so become that buddha that you already are. And the buddha nature is going to to this suffering. You know, It's like a loving mother takes in the pain of the child and converts it into love and gives it back. Okay. That worked. Alright. So bring you're awareness or just get yourself comfortable. Could bring your awareness to the tip of your nose and watch the air, the sensation at the tip of the nose is the air.

Moves out and then back in. Carefully see yourself as a buddha. Inside have a body that's like a rainbow and inside it's just pure light. Pure beautiful mind. Expensive field with ultimate compassion. With ultimate love. Starting at the area between your eyebrows and about an inch behind there channel that runs and it is just exquisite illuminated with the color of red gold. And that channel is about the size of a drinking straw. Or a straw that you'd get from mcdonald's. It runs up to the crown of your head and inside.

Tail of your body. At about the place where your heart would be. There is a piece rooms. It is that compassion. What compassion you have. Seen the rows as a diamond. Wisdom. Buddha, Uc The island of Haiti, you see porta prince. You see the buildings Decimated. You see people crushed beneath them? You see a child crying for its mother? You see a mother who's lost her children? You see the kindness of all beings we're trying to get supplies. To those who need. You see the broken bones. You feel the first you feel their loves.

And I'm so home. Lives of any structure or government, Loss of friends, Food. Lots of dreams and hopes. Qc see husband's desperately trying to find their families your lives but beneath the rubble. You see people sitting at the side of the road in shock. You see the supplies we've been flown in. To the generosity of other countries that are sitting there going to waste because they can't get to the people who need them. You see the exhaustion on the faces. The doctors and nurses in the hospitals that can't do.

What they need to do because they haven't got any supplies. You should not even have a building or no plugged. You hear the crowds? People in other countries who have lost loved ones down there, and there's from Canada. Just arrived. And crash beneath the building. Oil last you can. You see laundry There's just nothing to be had and you see people running to grab whatever they can possibly take. It's not theirs. And you'd start to see that is just so oily black, small begin to draw it away from that island.

With every breath that you take you draw all that pain and all that suffering. Don't lord your beautiful buddha nature? To your incredibly open compassionate loving kindness of your heart? Draw closer to you. You're gonna take it inside you And when it touches your wisdom your diamond, you just gonna burn it up. You have that power. Hold it beneath your nostrils is a tart. Or black ball initially. And then with the intention destroy all the suffering. In it's world and the intention to take all living beings, to place beyond pain, draw in and have it touch the diamond.

And burn it up completely so that there's nothing left but pure white smoke. And now you're going to give back one of your pure pure element. The earth element virginia, the eleventh of hardness. Begin by getting that, out of that element of hardness you give them smooth roads. And give them trucks. You're give them food. You give them hospitals. You give some journeys, you give them dead. Out of that element. You give them some place to sit a roof over their heads. You chiefs some loving arms. For the child that has parent.

Putting arms. To those who lost sons and daughters and husbands and locked. You your. With your element. You give them cool trees, shade to sit under. You're two beautiful temples and churches. In places to pray. And give them beautiful homes better than they ever had. All with your perfect element to partners. Element of earth. And then with your element of water. Liquidity. You give them pure water to drink. Clean blood supplies. And any liquid that they need to nourish their bodies. And then with your element fire, you're draw element the fire.

To give them what they need cook with keep the come with. Energy they need to cool themselves with. Light. You run? To hear me music. Was your wing element? Picture buddha winged element. You give a moment. So things get to where they need to go. You give them thoughts of loving kindness. You give power to those who would be leaders to rise up and be leaders for them. To give power to those who would be teachers to rise up and be teachers. Verizon spiritual guides. You give your calming wind element to those who are anxious.

And give it to those who are fearful. You take away all of their anger. And fills with compassion. And the desire to help each other. You see Palm trees rising. Growing, fluid crow in the hillside. It's a paradise now. Children have teachers families have meaningful work. There spiritual guides, There's leisure time. There's joy. There music. There's dance. Their friends and dare house. And now you give them your flesh. Just give it away, is every kind being has ever given us much to eat. Give him mark flash.

Take your skin. Make clothing for them.

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