Practicing with power: Engaging in Mahamudra meditation

After engaging in mantra recitation, in many of our sadhanas we then have the opportunity to engage in Mahamudra meditations.  The entire Kadampa path to enlightenment can be summed up in one phrase:  “relying upon Guru, Yidam and Protector, I travel the path of Lamrim, Lojong and Vajrayana Mahamudra.”  What does this mean?  Guru is the spiritual guide who explains to us what we need to do.  Yidam is who we are trying to become.  Protector is our personal spiritual trainer who provides us with all of the conditions necessary to travel the path and become the Yidam according to the Guru’s instructions.  What is the path for becoming the Yidam?  It is Lamrim, Lojong and Vajrayana Mahamudra.  The main function of Lamrim is to make our desires spiritual, and in particular to give us the most powerful of all desires bodhichitta – the wish to become a Buddha for the sake of all living beings.  Lojong teaches us how to transform the experience of unpleasant feelings into the enlightened qualities of a Buddha, and Vajrayana Mahamudra teaches us to how to transform the experience of pleasant feelings into the enlightened qualities of a Buddha. Of all the pleasant feelings possible, none is more pleasant than the clear light mind of great bliss.  In reality, our practice of self-generation is really a preliminary practice for our main practice of Vajrayana Mahamudra.

We can engage in meditation on Vajrayana Mahamudra by thinking as follows:

1.  My mind is nothing other than a synthetic reflection of the minds of all living beings.  In this context, because we are engaging in this meditation from the perspective of exchanging self with others, we are viewing ‘our’ mind as the synthesis of ‘others minds’, so we are meditating on the emptiness of the very subtle mind of all living beings.  The ultimate nature of my mind is without form, like an infinite vast universe of immaculate clear light.

2.  Our mind has an absence of form.  We imagine that all conventional forms have dissolved, and the only thing appearing is the clear light Dharmakaya.  Mentally, it is very calm and silent, like a tranquil and transparent pond at dawn.  Our mind has an absence of ordinary mental activity.  There is no mental activity whatsoever of our ordinary mind.  We ‘listen to the silence of our ordinary mind.’

3.  My mind is completely empty of inherent existence, like a drop of water that has mixed inseparably with the ocean of great bliss.  Our mind has an absence of inherent existence.  We view this clear light as our very subtle mind, and we consider its lack of inherent existence.  We feel as if we are ‘underneath’ the conventional, very subtle mind inside its emptiness.

4.  Realizing the complete purity of my mind functions to purify all of my contaminated karma, which is like a holographic film which gives rise to the appearance of a world of suffering and all of the suffering beings who inhabit that world.  This has the effect of completely purifying my contaminated dream of samsara so that it finally ceases altogether.  Not only am I freed into the clear light, all the beings who I had previously imprisoned in my contaminated dream of samsara are now free.  When we meditate on the emptiness of our very subtle mind, it functions to purify our mind of the two obstructions, so we can purify all contaminated karma from our mind.  Therefore, this meditation functions to purify the contaminated karma on the minds of all living beings.  Karma is like holographic film, when we shine the mind through it, it reflects a being. So we should feel like moment by moment our concentration on this clear light functions to free all living beings from the samsaric dream we have created for them. When we become distracted, we feel as if you have accidentally re-imprisoned them in contaminated appearance, and so out of compassion we re-dissolve everything into the clear light and free them once more.

5.  On the feeling of doing all of this, we think, I am the Dharmakaya guru deity.  On the basis of accomplishing this function, we impute our I.

The benefits of this meditation are countless:  We directly bless the minds of all living beings.  Wherever you imagine a Buddha, a Buddha actually goes.  In this case, we bestow upon them the spiritual power of the guru deity and bestow upon them the realization of the union of great bliss and emptiness.  We create an indestructible karmic link between ourself, all living beings, and definitive guru deity, which will ripen in the future in the form of having these beings as our disciples for the practice of whatever deity we are practicing.  By meditating in this way, we will karmically reconstruct all the beings of our dream into Buddhas.  Imagining that they are perceiving directly the Dharmakaya karmically reconstructs them to do so in the future.  When we meditate in this way, we create infinite karma for ourself to receive all of this benefit as a karmic echo of our own actions.

Is there any point doing anything else with our life?

2 thoughts on “Practicing with power: Engaging in Mahamudra meditation

  1. Cher Ryan,
    Je suis tellement heureux et fortuné d’avoir retrouvé le chemin de tes enseignements.
    Je pensais te voir au fall festival, mais je suis encore plus heureux de trouver tes conseils précieux sous cette forme.
    J’espère que toutes la famille se porte bien et j’aurais grand plaisir à vous revoir à l’ocasion.
    Beaucoup de choses se sont également passées dans ma vie et je suis très content de ma pratique.
    Serait-il bienvenue de poser des questions sur ce blog ou ce n’est pas le but ni l’endroit.
    Bien à toi
    Dominique (de Paris)

    • How nice to hear from you! Unfortunately, I couldn’t make it to Portugal (physically, at least). Glad to hear you are doing well. Of course, feel free to ask questions. You can ask in French if you prefer, but I will answer in English. Glad to be back in touch,


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