my Buddhist bones

A week ago I found a book in my letter box: “Cave in the Snow” by Vicki Mackenzie. It is the true story about the English woman Diane Perry who became a nun within the Tibetan Buddhism lineage of Kargyu, and lived in a cave in the Himalayas for 13 years.

Right now, I feel emerged in the Tibetan Buddhism-field again – and the Kargyu is the lineage I found myself intimately drawn to, when I was still practicing some years ago. It originates from Milarepa, the poet-saint that I already have included in my blog. This time I read about Buddhist practice as an Acim-student – and again, I am rewarded with new clarity about the Course as I read about Tenzin Palmo (Diane Perry’s Buddhist name) and the experiences from her practice.

Here are some highlights that helped me see the Course in a more expanded way than before:

“One evening I looked inside and saw this grasping and attachment and how much suffering it was causing me. Seeing it so nakedly at that moment it all fell away.From that moment on I didn’t need to reach out.”

“The more you realize the more you realize there is nothing to realize”

It’s only when you understand non-duality that you are not overwhelmed by it all and have the genuine ability to help – this reminds me that only when I see my brother as the  Holy Son of God I will not be overwhelmed by illusion and believe in it.

“The nature of the mind—is unconditional, non-dual consciousness. It is Emptiness and bliss. And when it is realized, it isn’t very dramatic at all. There is no cosmic explosion, no fanfare of celestial trumpets. It’s like waking up for the first time – surfacing out of a dream and then realizing that you have been dreaming. That’s why the sages talk about  all things being an illusion. Our normal way of being is muffled – its’ not vivid. It’s like breathing in stale air. Waking up is not sensational. It’s ordinary. But it’s extremely real.”

And this! so helpful to me – “it’s not serious” as the Course says:

“I thought, “Why are you still looking for happiness in Samsara? and my mind just changed around. It was like: That’s right – Samsara is Dukka [the fundamental unsatisfactory nature of life.] It’s OK that it’s snowing. It’s OK that I am sick because that’s the nature of Samsara. There’s nothing to worry about. If it goes well that’s also nice. It doesn’t make any difference.”

For me, it feels like the Course-understanding is being helped and enriched by my old practice, and it feels like being nourished in my very bones.

Very comforting feeling.

P.S I just got permission to print the English translation to the Mahler-song in Softening: very Coursey, it is.

Please note that nothing written here is intended as medical advice. Readers who think that they need help with a physical or psychological condition are advised to seek a qualified opinion.

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