Hail to the Teachings
EQUANIMITY AND COMPASSION
Preliminaries and Dedication
Equanimity: Friend, Stranger and Enemy
Bodhicitta: 7-Point Mind Training
Bodhicitta: 4-Point Mind Training
PRELIMINARIES AND DEDICATION
In order to make the most out of the following analytical meditations, it is
important to realise that one should not only observe the analytical mind, but
also the emotions and feelings that come up.
Iit is strongly advised to start with a good motivation beforehand, to take a few minutes to calm down (doing e.g. a brief breathing meditation is very good) and to dedicate the positive energy afterwards.
For this, the following traditional prayers can be used:
I go for refuge to the Buddha,
I go for refuge to the Dharma,
I go for refuge to the Sangha. (3x)
Setting the Mind to Enlightenment
By virtue of giving and so forth,
may I become a Buddha for the benefit of all sentient beings. (3x)
May all sentient beings have equanimity, free from attachment, aggression
May they be happy, and have the causes for happiness.
May they be free from suffering and causes for suffering.
May they never be separated from the happiness that is free from suffering. (3x)
Respectfully I prostrate with body, speech and mind;
I present clouds of every type of offerings, actual and imagined;
I declare all the negative actions I have done since beginningless time,
and rejoice in the merit of all Aryas and ordinary beings.
Please teacher, remain until cyclic existence ends
and turn the wheel of Dharma for all sentient beings.
I dedicate the virtues of myself and others to the great Enlightenment.
By this virtue may I soon
reach a Guru-Buddha-state,
and lead each and every being
to that state of Buddhahood.
May the precious Bodhicitta
not yet born, arise and grow
may that born have no decline
but increase forever more.
EQUANIMITY: FRIEND, ENEMY, STRANGER
Visualize in front of you three persons: at the left a good friend, in the
middle a stranger, to the right an enemy or someone you cannot stand.
- Concentrate on the friend in front and examine your feelings towards him or her.
- Now concentrate on the stranger and examine your feelings towards him or her.
- Now concentrate on the enemy and examine your feelings towards him or her.
- Return to the stranger and realize that this person can easily become your friend or enemy in the future.
- Next, look at the friend and realize that this person may become your enemy in the future when cheating or hurting you.
- Now, look at the enemy and realize that this person may become your friend in the future when helping you.
- Again look at your friend and try to strongly feel love and appreciation.
- Now try to hold this feeling and look at the enemy; is it really impossible to feel some love and compassion for this person?
- Try to realize that all three, friend, stranger and enemy are completely equal in trying to become happy and trying to avoid suffering.
- Do I want to suffer? Examine your feelings when thinking abour
- Do others want to suffer?
- Do I wish anyone else to suffer?
- What is so special about me, that I protect myself and not others?
- Can I forgive my enemies for being imperfect humans, just like me?
- Compassion is the wish that others have no suffering.
- Do I really want my enemies not to suffer?
- Do I have the courage to help others in need?
- Do I have the courage to relieve the suffering of my enemies?
- Can I make others' wishes more important than my own?
" May I be a bridge and a ship for those who want to cross the water.
May I be an island for those who seek one. and a lamp for those desiring light,
May I be a bed for all who wish to rest, and a hand for those who need a help."
7-POINT MIND TRAINING TO GENERATE BODHICITTA
Note that these 7 steps take a long time, and it may be advisable to just meditate on one step per session in the beginning.
1. Equanimity (one can also use above meditation on friend, enemy and
- Friends may turn into enemies
- Enemies may become friends
- Strangers may become friends or enemies
- Where is the difference between these people but in my own mind?
2. All sentient beings have been my loving mother or a best friend, as I have lived innumerable lives
- Since beginningless time I have been reborn, in each of these lives I needed a mother
- I have lived countless lives, and always had some good friends
- Could not everyone have been my mother or my best friend?
3. Remember the kindness of your mother
- My mother carried me in her body for 9 months
- She fed me, washed me, kept me warm, cared for me when I was ill
- She may not be perfect, but do I never make mistakes?
- She made sure I received an education and taught me to take care of myself
4. Wanting to repay the kindness
- Would it not be great if I could repay her and all previous mothers' kindness?
5. Generate great love
- "May all mother sentient beings have happiness and the causes for happiness."
6. Generate great compassion
- "May all mother sentient beings be free from suffering and the causes for suffering."
7. Generating Bodhicitta
- "Instead of selfishly woring for myself alone, I should work to bring all living beings happiness and release them from their suffering: therefore, may I become an omniscient Buddha, as he is the perfect doctor to cure the suffering of all my mother sentient beings."
4-POINT MIND TRAINING TO GENERATE BODHICITTA
The '4 Point Mind Training' is based on cultivating four realisations:
2. Faults of self-cherishing
Meditate on karma, and the consequence that self-cherishing is the only cause of my problems.
3. Good qualities of cherishing others
Meditate on karma, and the consequence that cherishing others is the cause of all happiness.
4. Exchanging self & others
Being 'intelligently selfish';Equanimity: Friend, Stranger and Enemy
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Last updated: April 11, 2001