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Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche - The Wealth of Being Natural

Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche - The Wealth of Being Natural

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Published by: Memento__Mori on May 14, 2012
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11/09/2012

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In March 1999 Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche gave a weekend teaching at Vajradhara Gonpa about calm abiding or shamatha meditation. Here we present an extract from that teaching.
For those who are completely new, there are going to be a lot of technical terms like yoga,shamatha, etc. Don't worry so much, it's just my habit. I have this habit, we Buddhists havea habit of uttering some of these words. It doesn't mean a lot. But once you experience [it],then maybe some of this can give [you] a lot of meaning. For instance, the word 'yoga'. Ithink for a lot of Byron Bay and Nimbin people [towns in northern New South Wales withalternative populations], 'yoga' just means stretching. Me, I am trained to think in adifferent way. When we say [the word] 'yoga' - in Tibetan 'yoga' is translated as
nal jor 
(
rnal 'byor 
) - it has a very rich meaning.
Nal 
(
rnal 
) actually means 'being natural' and jor (
'byor 
)means 'wealth', 'richness'.So we are talking about the richness or the wealth of being natural. As a human being, weneed to have wealth - mundane, materialistic wealth, and more mental wealth or spiritualwealth, such as love, compassion, knowledge, intelligence, diligence, patience and so on.Then [we need] physical wealth - beauty, attractiveness, majesty, radiance or whatever.But yoga is the richness or the wealth of being natural. In fact, the word 'yogi', or in Tibetannal jor pa, means 'one who has such kind of wealth, the wealth of being natural'. In India or in Tibet, we refer to practitioners, meditators, as yogis, meaning they have this richness or they have this wealth of being natural.The question is, for what should we practise shamatha? To be natural or, in fact, to usemore practical language, to be under the control of oneself. That's it. Most of the time weare not under the control of [ourselves]. Our mind is always attracted or distracted withsomething - our enemies, our lovers, our friends, just everything, hope, fear, jealousy,pride, attachment, aggression, all of this. So, in other words, [it's] the objects, thephenomena, the world, which control our mind; we have no control over it. Maybe we cancontrol [it] a little bit, for a split second; but if you are in an extreme emotional state, you'lllose it.So the purpose of shamatha meditation you can say, therefore, is to actually achieve acertain control over one's own mind. In that case, it can be used for all kinds of mundanepurposes - as mundane as, tomorrow, if you need to go for a job interview, you need tobehave well in front of whoever is the new employer. Your state of mind should be relaxed,you should not cough too much or you should not scratch. You should not do certainthings, otherwise this might make the person who's supposed to give you a job think twice1
THE WEALTH OF BEING NATURAL
 
because you are behaving strangely. So, on every level in our world, we need control andin order to gain such control we do shamatha meditation.Then, of course, for a Buddhist the objective is not just a worldly, mundane, short-termobjective. We are supposedly looking for enlightenment, we are supposedly looking for higher achievement. For that, definitely, we need control over our mind.From the Buddhist point of view, being natural has got a lot to do with [being] unfabricated,unfabricated by all kinds of dualistic references. So, in this sense, for example, the highestvipashyana or insight meditation, such as maha-ati of the Nyingma tradition, emphasises alot not fabricating and remaining in the state of being natural. So I guess for those whohave a long, solid aim to follow this path and gradually practise advanced Buddhistmeditation such as Dzogchen or whatever, they should get used to this term of beingnatural. As a human being, when a problem comes, our immediate habit, our strong habit, is tocounter-attack or to overcome it or try to do something about it. That's the habit that wehave. No one - not many people anyway - can accept that, in fact, the best way to combatthis problem, the best way to overcome it, is by remaining in the state of naturalness.That's kind of difficult because, first of all, we do not know what 'being natural' [is]… And,you see, in the absolute definition, being natural is being free from dualistic references, soyou are going beyond not only aggression, passion and all that, but even [beyond] so-called good thoughts like love and compassion, serenity, sanity, all of that - because allthose are also a bit of an emotion, all of those are also thoughts, concepts.But right now for many of us, if we talk about reaching to a stage where not only [do wenot] have negative emotions but [there are] also no other dualistic thoughts such as loveand compassion and all that, that's beyond our reach. We have a lot of this religious habit,for instance, 'I'm a Buddhist, I should be compassionate.' That's good, there's nothingwrong with that, but there's something that you have to actually add. Not only should onebe compassionate as a Buddhist, but one should actually really try to remain in the state of [naturalness]. That's probably the main aim of the Buddhist teachings.In fact, as you would hear if you received teachings like Mahamudra, if we can remain inthis state of [naturalness], that is referred to as wealth. Why is it wealth? When you havethis ability to remain in the natural state, then you will manage to find all this wealth of loveand compassion automatically. So, in this sense, what I'm saying is that if you doshamatha meditation - just watching the breathing in and out, in and out - when thethoughts come, do not reject them, do not encourage them. That's not what you aresupposed to do. You only watch the breathing, in and out. Slowly, all this fabrication of thoughts becomes less or weak or slow. When that happens, the true colour or the truenature of the mind then has some space to function.Right now we are not giving this mind any opportunity to act like itself. There's just nospace to manifest itself. Then the [next] question - maybe a curious question - is if we let2
 
this mind perform, what kind of performance does this mind have? What is the true colour [of mind]? This is where the Buddhist answer comes in. Here, the Buddhists [would] ask,'What is the definition of mind?' Luminous. This luminosity has a big definition. It's endless.Most of the Mahayana teachings, all the Vajrayana teachings, are taught in order toexplain what this luminosity means. So it's not something that we can just say in a fewhours. But, generally, in order to encourage practitioners, we usually give beautiful namesto this true nature of mind, this true colour, such as 'buddha nature', 'the buddha within'.Now, as I say this, it sounds a little negative because I'm almost saying we just give this abeautiful label that it actually does not deserve. I'm not [meaning] that. It does deserve [thelabel]. This true nature of mind is given a name 'buddha nature', 'the buddha within', 'basicgoodness', and it really does deserve this name of buddha nature.Why? It's quite difficult to tell you because it's like you don't have eyes on your toes. So if Itell you, 'Imagine how you would see the table through your toe', you cannot imagine [it].You can use the reference of putting your head upside-down and looking at it, but itdoesn't work. It's slightly difficult to imagine. Why? Because right now this mind of ours…Every time we use this mind, we are always using this mind through these emotions,through this fabrication, through these fabricated filters. That's the only reference we have.These emotions, these negative things, like jealousy, pride, that's the only way. That's it.This is why the true colour [of mind] is not manifesting, because that's the only way we canunderstand.Now, if I say, imagine your mind without anger, without aggression, without ignorance,without dullness, without agitation, without references, without knowledge, withouteducation, without a political system, it's quite difficult, isn't it? The Buddhists have decidedto give this beautiful name, 'the buddha within', 'buddha nature', to this true colour [of mind]. And it does really deserve this name because what Buddhists think is this - 'buddha'[means] the awakened one - the true colour, the true nature of the mind is the awakenedstate. The ignorance, the desire, the jealousy, all these are not awakened. So what I'msaying is, the term 'awakened' is used in reference to these emotions. The emotions, thenegative emotions like desire, aggression, they are not awakened. Why are they notawakened?It's easy to know because when you have aggression, you are blind, definitely. On a grosslevel, when you have aggression you only see one thing, what you want to see, what youhave decided to see, what you are taught to see, what you are fixated on seeing. That's it.You don't see the whole picture. You only see that one side of the picture, and even thatone side we don't know whether that is the real one side. It could be just your imagination.That's why it's not awakened; it is totally in a deep sleep. As long as you have thisignorance, these emotions, these things are making us not natural. That's it. Why are wenot natural? Because of these things. We are angry, we lose our naturalness. We are jealous, we lose our [naturalness]. The real mind has none of these.So now, what are we doing? Shamatha is now a big trick. Shamatha does not necessarilygrab this true colour of the mind and say, 'Look, this is what you should be looking at'.That's not shamatha's job. Shamatha knows very well that you are distracted by all this,you are fabricating, you are being not natural because of all these [delusions]. So3

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