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Enlightening the mind

india Updated: May 13, 2010 01:39 IST
HH Tai Situpa

The mind can be enlightened because the essence of it is the same as the dharmakaya of the Buddha. The problem is that we fail to recognise it. When we get to recognise it and realise it, then we become the Buddha.

Unlike our body and its parts, our mind has no limitations. Our thoughts, our speech and everything else have limitations. The mind is not a composition of anything, so it is free from all limitations. But it is so close and so simple that we do not realise it. A lot of purification and effort is needed to acquire the qualification to realise the Buddha within.

Our minds are not enlightened because we perceive the limitless nature of the mind as the limited nature of ‘I’. Since we don’t recognise its limitlessness, it becomes the most limited. The ‘I’ actually manifests attachment, anger, jealousy, pride and all other kinds of defilements. Thus we become the servant of our bodies and our speech. And our bodies and speech become the servants of our defilements.

In other words, our mind, which is the Buddha in its essence, becomes the servant of our defilements. This is the definition of samsara.

A simple example will clear confusion. Take anger, instead of doing anything about it, just look and ponder over it. It is not there, and hence it is emptiness.

We have become slaves to our anger, and hundreds are killed just because we are unable to use the wisdom of our mind.

They entangle us in a cycle of hatred and killings, and the mind is defiled and you are placed farthest from its wisdom. But in case you leave it alone, then you can realise the real essence of it, and it comes out with its perfect nature. This essence is in ultimate harmony with everything, at all times.

(Edited extracts from the author’s book, Nectar of Dharma: The Sacred Advice,Volume I)