The entire universe and everything within it are one single entity – my mind. It is like a giant play dough that assumes different aspects in dependence upon which karma is ripening. Samsara is uncontrolled rebirth in an uncontrolled world. Why is the world and our rebirth uncontrolled? Because our mind is uncontrolled. Since the world is the nature of our mind, if our mind is uncontrolled our world and rebirth are uncontolled because these are one and the same thing. Because my mind twists and contorts in deluded and contaminated ways, the world, which is the same entity as this mind, also twists and contorts in an uncontrolled and contaminated way.
If I bring my mind under control, then the world will also come under control, again because the world and my mind are the same entity, like two names for the same thing. The Lamrim cycle is like the ultimate anti-delusion mental multi-vitamin. Directly or indirectly all delusions find their opponent in the lamrim. A systematic, daily practice of the lamrim carried out over the course of a lifetime will gradually pacify all delusions and bring our mind (and by extension our world) under control. There may be times when we need to pay particular attention to applying more direct opponents to specific delusions which are arising, but our main emphasis for our whole life is a systematic practice of the lamrim.
Within the context of our tantric practice, we try gain expereince of the recognition that the nature of the world is our mind, but the nature of our mind is the ocean of bliss and emptiness. The world is the bliss and emptiness of our mind assuming the shape or appearing in the aspect of the world. Our job is to transform through our generation stage practice the shape of the ocean of our mind of bliss and emptiness into a Keajra. We transform all the beings of our world, who are likewise aspects or waves or parts of the same entity of our mind of bliss and emptiness into pure beings abiding in this pure world. To get some feeling for this, the key recognition is to feel like our mind of bliss and emptiness is like the ‘land’ in Pure Land. In this sense, pure land and pure mind are synonyms, or even two different names for the same thing. It is not enough to just intellectually understand this, but try to experience your world in this way.
One thing that can easily give rise to doubts about the relationship between our mind and the world is it seems like we can change our mind, but the world remains exactly as it was before. In other words, by changing our mind we change nothing. We observe this and then falsely conclude that changing our mind changes nothing or that there is no relationship between the world and our mind. The answer to this doubt is to understand karmic inertia. Once a karmic seed has ripened, it cannot be stopped until it has run its course. Every karmic seed when ripened creates effects for a certain duration of time. The world as we know it is the collective effect of countless karmic seeds that have ripened. Each one of these seeds will have a certain duration to them, and no matter how I change my mind, those seeds will still need to run their course and I need to accept this. But, if starting now I create new karmic seeds and I activate new karmic seeds, then gradually the karmic inertia can shift in new directions. I create new karmic seeds by engaging in new actions, and I ripen these seeds through creating a hospitable environment for virtuous seeds to ripen (I make my mind rich in virtue through generating and maintaining virtuous minds). If I do these two things, together with rely completely upon Dorje Shugden, then gradually the karmic inertia within my mind can and will shift – oftentimes quite quickly and dramatically once the old karma has burned itself off and once the new kamra has reached a critical mass creating a ‘tipping point.’
We engage in our generation stage practice of generating a pure land and then believing that we are abiding within it not because it is objectively true or our living expeirence, but because generating and believing in the pure land is a virtuous action which then plants new karmic seeds on our mind which when they ripen will be as we imagined. Further, the generation stage environment is a virtuous environment that is propitious for virtuous and pure seeds to ripen, so it accomplishes both of the conditions necessary for changing our karmic inertia. If we do these things with sufficient quantity of seeds and over a sufficiently long period of time, our karma can and will shift, bringing about the new world which is reflective of the nature of our mind. Our mind is like an enormous mass whose outer aspect may currently be in the shape of a samsara, but if deep within this mass we are generating and pushing outwards new shapes, it will eventually start to reshape even the outer aspect of our mind (the world).
Your turn: Take the biggest problem in your life – now realize that this problem is the nature of your own mind. How does this change your perspective on the situation?