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I lived less than a hundred meters away from an old village cremation ground and witnessed the unceasing flow of processions, sometimes weekly, sometimes monthly. The solemn groups of family, friends and community members who carried the deceased on their final journey to fires of dissolution all passed by my small abode.
No one was more observant, aware and dynamically present than the Maharshi. He missed nothing. From the tremendous power of his inner stillness and outer simplicity, he was far more present and vitally alive than most could ever imagine.
In the midst of a happy life are we likely to stop and ask ourselves; what is this all about?’ But when sorrows blight our existence nothing is more natural than that we should step back and question our existence. We need not shun our mind or our emotions, because, in time, they can become our greatest motivators and our staunchest allies.
Life is indeed dreamlike. So dreamlike that we often cruise through our days barely aware of what is really going on. Then suddenly someone we knew, someone we loved or hated or acknowledged at least, as existing, even if only on the fringes of our world is gone. They are no more; phoof!
I had heard the day before that Tulku Urgyen, a great Dzogchen master, would be offering a special long life empowerment to Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, a contemporary and also a great Dzogchen practitioner, who had not been well for some time.
Giving our attention to this huge unknown, which we call death can help us to open another door into the even greater mysterious cavern of, what we call, our life. Which in turn, can point us at last, towards the greatest of all mysteries; that of our awareness.
We are not only fed a multitude of reasons as to why we need to be fearful but because we believe that what we think we know and what we perceive with our senses is true and real we become entangled. The whole spiral of delusory perceptions spins around relentlessly due to the momentum of these inherently faulty beliefs.
We get so caught up in the little dramas going on in our lives and in our minds; that we take them to be true and real. But if we stop for a moment and look up into the sky, be it day or night and let that vision touch us in that secret, silent place beyond thoughts and words, something can happen.
We have the power to turn our mind to whatever we choose, whenever we choose. This kind of freedom is something that we normally take completely for granted and yet so very much depends upon it and upon the knowing of it.
A hundred and four years is a long time to be alive in the world. Rinpoche met and influenced so many people; he saved countless lives and lived out his term without compromising his convictions in any way. His life was one of simplicity and integrity and stands as a testament and shining example for all.
When I was growing up in New Zealand there was a motorcycle advertisement that used to be played a lot on the radio. It was before the days of compulsory helmets for motorbikes and bicycles. I can still remember the tune so clearly and the feeling which it used to evoke.
A personal account centered around the remarkable Buddhist master Fish Guru, as he is known around Kolkata, who bought millions of live fish to release into the sacred Indian river Ganges.
Zombiism is a word that encapsulates the rise of a modern trend; the age of the living dead. When having too much of everything has simply overwhelmed the senses and left an awful lot of people in a semi-conscious state.
Large tears began to roll down his cheeks as he looked at me steadily. It was the more heart-wrenching because he did not try to play up his situation in any way. He was simply acknowledging what his life had become.
We are endlessly distracted and preoccupied with things which are not intrinsically important to our inner well being. In fact our educational system is founded upon the very principles that remove us from the sacred inner knowledge which lies at the very heart of our existence.
It is amazing just how much of our lives is held to ransom by passing emotional infatuations. Life slips by, unnoticed, because we are so continuously mentally and emotionally busy with the things that appear to be happening to us and around us; to say nothing of our private mental preoccupations.
The Tibetans have a saying; You will have to stand for a very long time with your mouth wide open before a roasted partridge will fly into it. It is a rather droll way of expressing high levels of improbability.
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