Ultimate stages of the path: Bodhichitta

Bodhichitta is the final mind that emerges from the vast path.  It is a mind that spontaneously wishes to become a Buddha, a being capable of actually removing all of the suffering of all living beings and of bestowing upon them the everlasting happiness of enlightenment.  The primary wish of a Bodhisattva, a being who possesses bodhichitta, is to free all beings.  To fulfill that wish, the Bodhisattva seeks to transform themselves into a Buddha.

The meditation on generating bodhichitta proceeds very simply.  We recall the joy we developed with the meditations on taking and giving and we think to ourselves how wonderful it would be to actually be able to do that.  We then consider how only a fully enlightened Buddha can do this – a being who has removed completely the two obstructions of delusions and contaminated karma, a being with an omniscient mind that realizes directly the ultimate truth of emptiness, a being with an equal love and compassion for all living beings without exception, one that has the skillful means to guide each being on the path of self-enlightenment.  Wanting to do this and seeing only a Buddha can, we naturally arrive at the conclusion, “I must become a Buddha for the benefit of all.”  This is the mind of bodhichitta.  The perfection of this meditation is training in it motivated by a wish to generate bodhichitta which is the substantial cause of the final enlightenment.  The ultimate perfection of this meditation is engaging in the perfection of this motivation combined with an understanding that oneself, the bodhisattva’s deeds, and the final result of full enlightenment for all are all empty creations of mind.

The mind of a Buddha is a mind that creates a pure world which functions to free all living beings.  The mind of a Bodhisattva is a mind that creates a Buddha, namely bodhichitta.   When we realize emptiness with a bodhichitta mind, we develop the power to actually create pure worlds out of emptiness.  This is extremely profound.  Up until now, our mind of self-cherishing has been creating a samsara filled with suffering sentient beings.  Now, our mind of bodhichitta realizing emptiness begins to create a pure world filled with liberated and enlightened beings.  We then train in improving our experience and skill at doing this until we complete our task of attaining enlightenment ourselves.  From one perspective, our enlightenment then gradually radiates out like a giant supernova of purity until our light fills the whole universe, but from another perspective ourselves and all living beings attain enlightenment simultaneously, fully and all at once.  We will have become a Buddha and all of our creation will likewise be Buddhas abiding in pure lands, engaging in pure deeds and enjoying pure enjoyments forever.  We will have collectively transcended grasping at good and bad for its alternative that everything is equally pure.

2 thoughts on “Ultimate stages of the path: Bodhichitta

  1. Sorry, Like is just not good enough…This post moved my mind to a totally different place..”. all are all empty creations of mind”. Reading this my heart burst open, light flew out. Jeez, no words really. Thank you so very much, Kadampa Ryan, Your words sing to me…..

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