PURASATI’S SONG OF REALIZATION

In TANTRIC POETRY by Erik Pema Kunsang

The lady and master, Purasati, yearned to understand the nature of everything. She went to the sage Bhashita, who sang just four lines of instruction, on keeping an open mind, a totally open mind. Now listen here to his simple words which have such depth:

You can realize the greatest knowledge
Within the state of total non-premeditation.
And when there is no thing to which you cling,
Then in the training you have reached perfection.

By merely hearing these four lines, Purasati understood. She then sang this spontaneous song. A song of vastness that is the basic nature of everything we perceive. This nature of vastness is somehow similar to a screen, a screen onto which all of life’s experiences unfold. She also sings of the timelessly awakened Buddha, the Ever-Excellent Samantabhadra, who is the nature of consciousness as the ground of all, and how he is indivisible from basic space, the female Buddha Samantabhadri.

For I the courtesan Purasati,
The elements, all five, are vastness,
The consorts of the five families,
And this vastness is the basic space, Samantabhadri.

The all-ground of the Ever-Excellent,
I see as indivisible from basic space.
Awakened mind now shines
like the sun in the sky.

Purasati became a teacher of Nagarjuna, the renowned master of the Middle Way. Here she instructs him in transcending all philosophical positions and conceptual beliefs.

Nagarjuna17While knowing, you may know that things are empty, yet in delusion.
While holding, you may hold the view, but it is a bind.
While thinking, you may ponder dharmakaya, it’s still a thought.
While meditating, you may nurture nonthought, but still conceptual.

On hearing this, Nagarjuna understood the basic nature of realization.

About the Author
Erik Pema Kunsang

Erik Pema Kunsang

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Translator of ancient Buddhist scriptures, author, bridge-builder to modern life, Buddhist teacher & meditation instructor. Board of director at 84000: Translating the Words of the Buddha. Founder of Rangjung Yeshe Publications and LEVEKUNST art of life. Other LEVEKUNST articles by the same author. Erik's website & retreats.

English translation & vocal: Erik Pema Kunsang. Music & vocal: Tara Trinley Wangmo. (c) 2010 Songs from Sacred Islands. Bamboo flute: Ajith Kodikara. Tabla: Malith Anuradha & Ajith Alosius. Sitar: Deshapriya Mihiripanne. Keyboard: Ranga Jagoda. Sri Lanka. Modified from Wellsprings of the Great Perfection, Erik Pema Kunsang, Rangjung Yeshe Publications.

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