How do we get used to remaining in the nature of the mind?
When thoughts come while you are meditating, let them come; there’s no need to regard them as your enemies. When they arise, relax in their arising. On the other hand, if they don’t arise, don’t be nervously wondering whether or not they will. Just rest in their absence. If big, well-defined thoughts suddenly appear during your meditation, it is easy to recognize them. But when slight, subtle movements occur, it is hard to realize that they are there until much later. This is what we call namtok wogyu, the undercurrent of mental wandering. This is the thief of your meditation, so it is important for you to keep a close watch. If you can be constantly mindful, both in meditation and afterward, when you are eating, sleeping, walking, or sitting, that’s it – you’ve got it right!
The great master Guru Rinpoche has said:
“A hundred things may be explained, a thousand told,
But one thing only should you grasp.
Know one thing and everything is freed-
Remain within your inner nature, your awareness!”
It is also said that if you do not meditate, you will not gain certainty: if you do, you will. But what sort of certainty? If you meditate with a strong, joyful endeavor, signs will appear showing that you have become used to staying in your nature. The fierce, tight clinging that you have to dualistically experienced phenomena will gradually loosen up, and your obsession with happiness and suffering, hopes and fears, and so on, will slowly weaken. Your devotion to the teacher and your sincere trust in his instructions will grow. After a time, your tense, dualistic attitudes will evaporate and you will get to the point where gold and pebbles, food and filth, gods and demons, virtue and non-virtue, are all the same for you-you’ll be at a loss to choose between paradise and hell! But until you reach that point (while you are still caught in the experiences of dualistic perception), virtue and non-virtue, buddha-fields and hells, happiness and pain, actions and their results – all this is reality for you.
As the Great Guru has said,
“My view is higher than the sky, but my attention to actions and their results is finer than flour.”
So don’t go around claiming to be some great Dzogchen meditator when in fact you are nothing but a farting lout, stinking of alcohol and rank with lust!
It is essential for you to have a stable foundation of pure devotion and samaya, together with a strong, joyful endeavor that is well balanced, neither too tense nor too loose. If you are able to meditate, completely turning aside from the activities and concerns of this life, it is certain that you will gain the extraordinary qualities of the profound path of Dzogchen. Why wait for future lives? You can capture the primordial citadel right now, in the present.
“This advice is the very blood of my heart. Hold it close and never let it go!”