Awakening Heart”Bodhichitta is a Sanskrit word that means ‘noble or awakened heart.’ Just as butter is inherent in milk and oil is inherent in a sesame seed, the soft spot of bodhichitta is inherent in you and me. It is equated, in part, with our ability to love. No matter how committed we are to unkindness, selfishness, or greed, the genuine heart of bodhicitta cannot be lost. It is here in all that lives, never marred and completely whole. It is said that in difficult times, it is only bodhichitta that heals. When inspiration has become hidden, when we feel ready to give up, this is the time when healing can be found in the tenderness of pain itself.
Bodhichitta is also equated, in part, with compassion – our ability to feel the pain that we share with others. Without realizing it we continually shield ourselves from this pain because it scares us. Based on a deep fear of being hurt, we erect protective walls made out of strategies, opinions, prejudices, and emotions. Yet, just as a jewel that has been buried in the earth for a million years is not discolored or harmed, in the same way this noble heart is not affected by all of the ways we try to protect ourselves from it. The jewel can be brought out into the light at any time, and it will glow as brilliantly as if nothing had ever happened.
This tenderness for life, bodhichitta, awakens when we no longer shield ourselves from the vulnerability of our condition, from the basic fragility of existence. It awakens through kinship with the suffering of others. We train in the bodhichitta practices in order to become so open that we can take the pain of the world in, let it touch our hearts, and turn it into compassion.”
“The ultimate guru is one’s own buddha nature – it’s the nature of the mind, and one has to cultivate being able to be centered within one’s own innate awareness. Because when one is in the nature of the mind, then one is indeed one with the guru. This is why when we do guru yoga we absorb the guru into ourselves – to realize that his/her mind and our own mind have become one. This is very important to realize. The ultimate guru is our own innate wisdom, and if we can access and cultivate that, then the enthusiasm for the Dharma just bubbles up endlessly.”
– Tenzin Palmo:
“We are not onlookers peering into the unified field of separate, objective reality – we are the unified field. We can reach beyond the physical body and extend the influence of intelligence. Every thought you are thinking creates a wave in the unified field. It ripples through all the layers of intellect, mind, senses, and matter, spreading out in wider and wider circles. You are like a light radiating not photons but consciousness. As they radiate, your thoughts have an effect on everything. Your relationship to life is the same as that of one cell to your whole body. One cell can talk to your whole body. One cell can influence your whole body. You can talk to the whole of life – influence the whole of life. The whole of life is as alive as we are. The distinction between ‘in here’ and ‘out there’ is a false one – as if the heart disregarded the skin because it was not on the inside.”
~ Deepak Chopra