In the last post we examined the mistake of basing our confidence on something external to ourselves – namely other’s opinion of us or what we do, the mistake of basing our confidence on our contaminated aggregates – our ordinary body and mind, and who we really are and what we are capable of. We ended with the question of how do we gain the power right now to be able to engage in any of the pure deeds of a Buddha. In this post, I will explain a magical method for unlocking the limitless power of our true selves.
What is the most important question – the question that if answered would answer all your other questions? When we were kids, we would ask each other questions like: if you had three wishes, what would you wish for. Eventually we figured out that the best thing we could wish for was more wishes. In that way, we could accomplish all our wishes. Along exactly the same lines, the most important question we can ask is: “what do I need to do to be able to make internal requests to you and receive perfectly reliable responses every time?” I had this question in my heart for years, saving it for whenever I would hope to have a meeting with Geshe-la. But he answered it through the teacher of the Summer International Teacher Training Program without my ever asking it!
The teacher said, “Geshe-la handed me a strange note. It says, some of you might be wondering how to make requests and receive perfectly reliable responses every time. So here is Geshe-la’s answer: ‘It is important to develop a good heart, a Buddhist intention, a beneficial intention, day and night, even during our sleep. We will perceive a special idea, a mental image or plan as our intention is maintained. Through blessings, imprints, receiving teachings and so forth, a special understanding or idea will develop. Then our teachings will be perfect. If we follow the writings alone, we will maintain just an intellectual understanding. It is most important that we improve our motivation.’”
The ITTP then discussed this in great detail about what it means and how we practice it. I could write endlessly on just this advice, but here are the main ideas.
- First we dissolve everything into the Dharmakaya. This eliminates all the interference from our ordinary mind.
- We then align our motivation with that of the Spiritual Guide. His final intention for everyone is the Dharmakaya, so this is an additional value of dissolving everything into the Dharmakaya. We generate a specific beneficial motivation with respect to the specific request we have for specific people by asking ourselves the question: “what does Geshe-la want for this person/these people?”
- With strong faith that he is there and that he has the power to respond, we make our request.
- We then wait, maintaining our pure motivation for wanting a response to our request.
- Through this, a special image or plan will appear to our mind which will be the perfectly reliable answer to our request.
- This likewise works when invoking the Buddhas to accomplish their function for ourselves or for others.
How does this work? We can understand this by an analogy. Dissolving everything into the Dharmakaya is like having a clear space within which to project an image. Aligning our motivation with that of the Spiritual Guide is like aligning the crystals of our karma with the direction of the light of our Spiritual Guide. The crystals themselves are our own karmic potentialities which when a special light is shined through them they project, like a hologram, the future experiences they hold or what is possible. These are created through our practice, study, etc. The more faith we have that our Spiritual Guide is there the more it opens the blinds in our mind by purifying the obstructions of his presence being manifest in our mind. The more faith we have that he has the power to respond to our request, the greater the power is the source of light. Our request creates the cause for him to actually shine the light through our karmic potentialities. The special idea that arises is the reflection of the light through the crystals that reflects the constellation of our karma. This is our perfect response individually tailored to our karma.
Through mastering this technique, we can receive perfect inner guidance from our spiritual guide at any moment, and always know what to do. With this ability, we will have nothing to fear and have infinite self-confidence.