Vows, commitments and modern life:  Being inseparable from virtue

Possess the three inseparables. 

This precept advises us that our body, speech, and mind should be inseparable from virtue.

How can we keep our body inseparable from virtue.  For me, the best way is to constantly remind myself that I have given my body away to all living beings as a servant.  Everything I do with my body, I try do for others.  We can use our body to help others in many ways, for example we can use our body to cook dinner for others at home, do our jobs at work, or even type something nice on a computer.  We do not have to actually help people with our body to keep in inseparable from virtue, it suffices to not harm any living thing with it.  For example, we can be careful to avoid stepping on insects or drive carefully in a car.  The best way we can keep our body inseparable from virtue is to view it as our emanation sent into this world to benefit living beings.  We are actually the guru deity, and our ordinary self is our first emanation in this world.  Likewise, we can generate the guru deity’s body inside our body, so that when others interact with us they are actually in the presence of the living Heruka.

With our speech, we can adopt a policy of “never saying anything bad about anyone ever.”  Such a policy alone is an all-day endeavor.  The speech of most people most of the time is negative, constantly criticizing others, talking behind their backs, etc.  In today’s world, especially on the internet, it is not at all uncommon for people to be incredibly mean with their words.  Since everyone else is doing it, it is very easy for us to start doing so as well.  When we do speak, we should be very vigilant to have everything we say help the situation in some way.  Since conflict abounds, instead of taking sides, try point out the common ground.  When somebody is being verbally attacked by somebody else, try calm the situation down.  When somebody does something good, make a point of praising it.    It is said that the tone with which we say something often conveys more than the content of our words, so we should always be mindful to speak kindly.  If we have the opportunity to give Dharma teachings or provide others with practical advice, we should do so.  The best way we can keep our speech inseparable from virtue is to always imagine that our speech is mounted on the mantras of our highest yoga tantra deity.  We imagine that as our words enter the other person’s ears, the mantra enters their heart.  And while we may be talking about sports or politics, because our words are mounted on the mantra, we imagine that the meaning understood by the other person is perfect explanations of Dharma.

We generally can keep our mind inseparable from virtue by thinking about the Dharma all of the time.  When we first start practicing, it feels as if the Dharma is on one side and our life is on the other.  To overcome this, when we practice we should use the examples from our own life to demonstrate the truth of Dharma; and during the meditation break we should take the Dharma we have learned and apply it as the solution to our daily problems.  If we practice in this way, the gap between our life and our practice will gradually close until eventually no matter what we encounter and what we do during the day, mentally we are thinking about Dharma all of the time.  The best way we can keep our mind inseparable from virtue is to maintain the recognition that everything that arises is a mere karmic appearance of mind arising from our clear light mind.  All things are equally empty, and emptiness is unchanging, so our mind can be constantly mixed with emptiness while we go about our day.  If we train in this way, soon the appearance of our day will come to resemble karmic clouds passing through the space of our mind.  We will stop getting caught up in samsaric dramas and instead stay focused on responding with wisdom and virtue.

Finally, we can learn to train in Tantric pure view, viewing all forms as manifestations of Buddha’s form body, all sounds as the mantra calling us home to the pure land, and all thoughts as manifestations of clear light Dharmakaya.

5 thoughts on “Vows, commitments and modern life:  Being inseparable from virtue

  1. Body, speech, mind, where do they arise from?
    It’s easier for Tantric practitioners practicing Mahamudra.

    Keep it simple. There is a pure source. The Guru-deity. When all things arise from this, eveything is pure.

    “May all my actions of body arise from the gur-deity”
    “May all the actions of my speech arise from the guru-deity”
    “May all actions of mind arise from the mind of great bliss of the guru-deity”

    Cherish the guru-deity in everything you do.
    Never walk in samsara alone. Walk in the shoes of the guru-deity.

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