My main job is to build my pure land, to literally transform myself into Keajra. A qualified self-generation is not just a picture, but is rather a feeling of being Heruka engaging in Heruka’s actions in Keajra, his pure land, for the benefit of all living beings.
The first thing is there is no feeling or trace whatsoever of our ordinary self. To the extent to which there is is the extent to which our self-generation is not qualified.
The following is what each aspect of the mandala feels like.
1. The nature of the mandala. The nature of the mandala is the clear light Dharmakaya. It feels like my mind is one giant Dharmakaya play-dough which can be shaped in any shape. The clear appearance is the aspect or shape, but the thing itself is my mind of great bliss appearing in this aspect to accomplish the function of leading all beings from the deepest hell to the highest enlightenment. It feels like I am a source of light and the clear appearance is a translucence through which I shine wisdom light.
2. The nada. The nada feels simultaneously like the synthesis or condensation of the entire mandala and the doorway through which we directly absorb into the Dharmakaya. It is like the singularity of the big bang from which all things pure emerge. It is like my root mind, or the mental engine powering the entire mandala.
3. Lama Tsongkhapa. It feels like I am the supreme Kadampa Spiritual Guide for the entire universe. I guide each and every being along the path from the deepest hell to the highest enlightenment. I emanate everything else. It is like the story of the person who mistakenly prostrated to his Yidam and not to his Spiritual Guide who was emanating it all. It feels like the condensation of all of Great Treasury of Merit. It feels like being Resident Teacher for a universal Dharma center. All of my experience of having been RT of Atisha center, this is what it feels like.
4. Heruka Father and Mother. Heruka is the Spiritual Father of all beings. He cares for them, provides for them, protects them, sets a good example for them, leads them along correct paths. All of my experience of being a father is aimed at helping me gain the feeling of what it is like to be Father Heruka.
5. Heruka, the Chakravatin King. Heruka is the Chakravatin king of the entire universe/pure land. He is a good king who dedicates himself to serving and empowering his people. All of my experience that I will gain as a diplomat is aimed at helping me gain this feeling of what it is like to be a benevolent Chakravatin King. Keajra is my realm, and I use my power and abilities for the benefit of my people.
6. Heruka, the indestructible drop. Heruka Father and Mother are by nature the indestructible drop. The goal is to gather all winds into this drop where they can be completely purified. The drop feels like a purifying spa for all impure winds.
7. Heruka, the principal of the body mandala. This has a feeling of being the supreme spiritual doctor/surgeon who, with the help of the nurses of the other deities of the body mandala, is moment by moment healing the subtle body of all beings. All physical illness comes from mental illness, all mental illness comes from delusions, all delusions come from imbalances or illness within the subtle body. Heruka and the Body Mandala function to heal all imperfections within the subtle body. So it feels like I am healing and repairing the subtle bodies of all living beings so that their winds can flow effortlessly into the indestructible drop (see #6).
8. The Great Bliss Wheel. This has two aspects, the deities and the objects of offering. The deities function principally to balance the four inner elements. Most illness comes from imbalance, and these deities do the final balancing of the four inner elements, giving rise to a feeling of full healthfulness (spiritual, mental, physical, etc.). The objects of offering represent the five completely purified objects of desire which I offer freely like a blissful banquet to all living beings.
9. The deities of the Mind, Speech and Body wheels. While by nature aspects of my Dharmakaya mind, and so therefore part of me, they feel like two main things: first, they are my spiritual nurses who each specialize in healing a specific aspect of the subtle bodies of all living beings. It feels like we are in the process of healing all of their subtle bodies. They are also the supreme Sangha friends. Again, the feeling of Atisha center. We had a feeling of being a real family and true friends of one another. All of the body mandala feels like a good Dr.’s office where the doctor and all of the staff are focused sincerely and single-pointedly on taking good care of all the patients. Imagine what a good Dr.’s office should be like, and this is what it is like. All of my experience with my father’s office helps me get a feeling for what it feels like.
10. The deities of the commitment wheel. They represent principally the sense doors of all living beings, they function to purify their sense doors so that everything they perceive is the completely pure mandala. It feels like I am bestowing upon them this sight, this perception, this point of view. It is like an eye surgeon or somebody who provides people with new, pure, sense powers through which they can forever perceive only the purity of Keajra.
11. The Celestial Mansion. This feels like the temple at Manjushri, only more transluscent and stupendeous. It is a school, a temple, in which I teach to all living beings the Kadampa path. At the summit of the temple within the Vajra are the essence of Joyful Path and Essence of Vajrayana, the victory and other banners represent Understanding the Mind, Ocean of Nectar and Great Treasury of Merit, the offering goddeses around represent Meaningful to Behold, etc.
12. Mount Meru. This feels like a series of different levels of pure land that I am emanating for living beings of different capacities and levels of attainment. Within these pure lands are all of the other pure lands of all of the other Buddhas. It also feels like the hill upon which the celestial castle sits from which the lord of the land is able to see his entire realm that he cares for.
13. The continents. These feel like the completely purified versions of the three thousand worlds. It feels like the pure village and community surrounding the celestial castle. All living beings may abide there, within complete purity. It is like the pure abodes for all beings, the universal city of enlightenment.
14. The protection circle. This is like the protective community walls, within which everything is pure and safe. It is like the border of Keajra itself, where everything inside is pure. Nothing impure can even enter. It is like a purifying force field that purifies everything that passes through it. It feels like a giant sphere of transluscent wisdom fire that surrounds everything described so far.
15. The Charnel Grounds. These feel like the surrounding communities outside the castle walls. They are still within the influence and control of Heruka, but they are a bit more wild country. They feel like training grounds emanated by the Chakravatin King and the Supreme Spiritual Guide for the inhabitants of Keajra to go out and train in the path. It is like a simulated samsara where they can practice training their mind in lamrim, lojong, clear appearance and pure conceptions. Everything within them is by nature Dharmakaya Heruka, but their function is to provide situations for training in the path. My ordinary world should feel like this. When I go out into my ordinary world I should correctly see it as the Charnel Grounds. I never leave the pure land, rather I am just in a different part of the pure realm for a different purpose.
16. The realsm of samsara. From the perspective of ordinary living beings, they see the charnel grounds as the six realms of samsara, but I know better. I know they are just seeing things incorrectly and in reality they are the Charnel Grounds. It feels like I am emanating countless emanations into the realms of samsara, but they do not see me as who I really am, they see me as other ordinary beings. But I see how their perception is mistaken. The beings they see appear according to their karmic dispositions, they are like my emanation bodies appearing within their minds/worlds. The literal translation of Avatar is emanation body of God. They are my Avatars through which I lead each and every being towards the center of the mandala from wherever they are, even the pits of the deepest hell.
17. Dorje Shugden’s protection circle and Dorje Shugden himself. Dorje Shugden is like the Prime Minister for the entire pure land. He emanates and organizes everything. He manifests all situations and pervades every apsect of everything. He arranges everything so that it is all perfect for the swiftest possible enlightenment of each and every living being. The Chakravatin King provides the policy, but it is the Prime Minister of Dorje Shugden that implements it in the daily lives of everyone. Everything is emanated for everyone for their enlightenment, he arranges everything so that it is perfect for training our mind and advancing along the path (not perfect for our laziness and attachment!).
18. The space like Dharmaka. All of Keajra floats within the clear light Dharmaka like an infinite space of clear light. It is simultaneously within the Dharmakaya and the nature of the Dharmakaya. Everything else is completely ‘still’ at peace, reverberating great bliss.
10 thoughts on “What it feels like to be Heruka in Keajra”
Sounds ace! It’s good to the have the picture in mind, the concepts mapped out.
I find that HYT practice works a billion times better when i practice the lower Tantras; Action tantra is the best thing EVER!
Action Tantra is the best thing, EVER!
Sorry, that darn echo, must be the cave i’m in.
I’m a big fan of Action Tantra as well.
The echo did a good job emphasising how good it is it there ;~)
Just wanted to reiterate your excellent focal point actually:
“It feels like”
Is it denial to feel bad about some things but refuse to feel that way and say, “no, i choose to feel good about this”. I don’t think so. I think it’s an honest way of accepting the reality and making the most out of the situation.
I get extremely depressed sometimes and i love nothing more than finding the bliss. It’s there. It’s at the bottom. Deep within. We don’t necessarily choose our circumstances but we can always choose to believe and feel differently.
I choose to feel bliss,i choose to feel joy. It’s who i am, it’s my centre, it’s what radiates everywhere. I choose to recognize it!
Happy Heruka Day all 🙂
I like where this article is coming from, and have just shared it on Cosmic Loti’s FB page.
Was wondering though, why does being Heruka feel “like the story of the person who mistakenly prostrated to his Yidam and not to his Spiritual Guide who was emanating it all.”?…
When we engage in our Heruka practice, we first dissolve the guru in the heart. The entire mandala should correctly be viewed as emanated by the Spiritual Guide. This is an essential recognition of our practice.
Yes, but why does it feel like a mistake?
Sorry to be slow getting the point.
[…] Kadampa Ryan gives some good insights into the practice of Heruka on his blog. Image Credits: Heruka Chakrasambava by Robert Beer Avalokiteshvara from Tharpa Publications […]
What we “feel” is the product of our past actions, in this case the holding on to wrong views. So everytime you “feel” that it is not right, identify this as a wrong view that you need to abandon, and re-double your efforts to understand the whole thing is emanated by the guru. If it helps you, you can imagine Je Tsongkhapa at your heart as Heruka and understand him to be your Spiritual Guide emanating everything. With training, this will come to feel entirely natural.
[…] For myself, I recite the Single-Pointed request with these recognitions day and night as I go about my day. It is my daily mantra, and with every recitation, it draws me closer to Heruka. In my meditation itself, I try to gain experience for what it feels like to be Heruka in Keajra. […]