#12: Hallebuddhaya: The cure and the medicine

1 April 2010 - 4:34am Comments Off

For those who have been following this series so far, we have reached a milestone here which can be considered momentous – depending on one’s decision, it can end countless lifetimes of ignorance and suffering and herald the beginning of a career which not only brings one permanent happiness but also equips one to help others achieve the same.

First however, let us get our priorities right. Do we want an end to all our problems and miseries, and to follow in the footsteps of the saints and Enlightened ones who have gone beyond? Or do we throw away the opportunity, chicken out and succumb to our old habituated views and ways to remain stuck in this unending cycle of unsatisfactoriness?

What is this 2500-year old cure which can transcend all our sufferings? It is the attainment of this state of mind which is free from the three poisons of ignorance, desirous attachment and hatred.

In Buddhism we call it nirvana. In practical terms, it is a state of inner peace and bliss that arises from a mind that has been calmed and made immune to external and internal disturbances. No, it is not the same as being stoned or spaced out.

When one’s mind is in such a state of perfect purity, one’s awareness is said to be super sharp and so clear that one can see things as they are, in their own nature – that is, without adding anything to it or subtracting from it. The masters said it is so cool, ordinary words cannot describe it adequately. That’s the secret of a Buddha’s smile! Apparently, if it can be described, it is not the real thing. Sorry, it looks like you got to attain it yourself and then be happily quiet about it, just like a Buddha!

At this juncture, if you are yearning for freedom and ready to take the medicine you have two exciting options. It depends on how much your heart is moved by the prospect of knowing you can be cured of all your neuroses.

One option is just to take the plain medicine, free yourself and be satisfied with that, period. You disappear from samsara for good and live happily ever after in nirvanaland without a care in the world. No one needs to care about you and you don’t care for no one. Does this option sound meaningful?

What about your loved ones, family members, anyone who means anything to you, who are still suffering? Don’t you want to share the cure with them? How many of us would keep quiet after having eaten at a place which serves great food at bargain prices? It seems almost unnatural and selfish that we can just delight in something and keep it to ourselves. It would be alright if no one had the same wish to be free, or shared the need for such a cure. However, I don’t think there is anyone in this universe who does not share this wish.

It is amazing how humans have the capacity to develop such a virtuous quality like compassion – the wish for others to be free from suffering.

If your heart moves you in the direction of this compassionate wish, if you find this other option to help others overcome their miseries much more meaningful, you have the opportunity to take a giant leap in your spirituality and go beyond the outer limits of nirvanaland into the limitless realm of the Bodhisattvas and Buddhas.

With such an altruistic motivation, you skip the plain medicine that takes you to nirvanaland and advance to GO. Go take the medicine flavoured with compassion and wisdom that will not only free us, but will fortify us with skills and knowledge that can help everyone that is out there suffering.

Is there any other career that is more meaningful and fulfilling? Who else can do it but us? Thanks to our merits, we have found this mother-of-all medicine, we gotta take it. If not now, WHEN?

 

NEXT: The Road to Perfection

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