YOUR MIGHTY MIND
From small to big, there
is nothing your mind can't do. Seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, touching, thinking,
all into your mind's capabilities. Fixing a meal to entertain an old friend recently
met, your mind plans what delicacy will be cooked, what to buy, when to offer
the treat. Building a larger house to accommodate your growing family, your mind
looks at the money in the saving account, how much to borrow from the bank, how
large the lot should be, the number of rooms, the place to be dedicated as a small
Someone says, "I am too busy to go to the Temple. I can as
well stay home and cultivate my mind." That's good. It's hoped that the man
has enough good roots, has practiced for many lives; therefore, he can now cultivate
without a teacher like the Great Knight Tue Trung of the Tran Dynasty, or Bang
Cong Uan of the Tang Dynasty. But, if it were only a pretext to drop his wife
in front of the temple's gate, then his Excellency The Husband drives around to
smoke his cigarettes or visit a pal to do some idle talks, that's another thing.
come to the Temple. It is called "the empty door." Provisionally understand
"empty" here as No Fighting, No Greed, No Seeking, No Selfishness, No
Self-Benefiting, No Lying. Do not show off yourself by loud talk, discussing right
and wrong, bragging your enormous "self." Do not take anything belonging
to the Permanently Dwelling [Triple Jewel] without permission, because of your
wrong interpretation of the commonly used phrase "of the pagoda." It's
not so. The story goes about a shramanera who stole a cake from the altar: he
fell for five hundred lives in the animal realm as a blind crow. That's what the
scriptures teach. At the Temple, your mind holds the precepts and is detached
from worldly pursuits.
The Temple is the place where you cultivate your blessings.
You work for it, like the couple who immanquably comes to the temple every week
to do the clean-up, dust the altars, polish the brass urns, regularly, patiently,
silently. Like the ladies who cut vegetables; like the big cook... they do work
for the temple as for their own homes. But more important, the Temple is a treasure
from which you should draw gold, silver and pearls. Those precious jewels are
your own peace and happiness, your purity, your rebirth in the Pure Land of Amitaba
Buddha, your liberation from recurrent cycles of births and deaths. The temple
is the place where you come back to your own eternal bright mind source which
is called the Buddha Nature, the True Mind.
Nowadays, science has discovered
many wonderful things concerning your mind. It is shouldered by your brain in
an extraordinary manner. Each cell in the brain contains from one thousand to
five hundred thousand tentacles to transmit and receive information, and the whole
brain has numberless tentacles like such. (1) Your mind and your brain can produce
approximately 60 different chemicals; each thought of your draws along one of
them. (2) Mind is body and body is mind: this is a way to say form is emptiness,
emptiness is form. If you were to harbor more restlessness and anxiety, your body
and mind secrete more toxins that cause sicknesses. It is said that the death
rate caused by cancer and heart diseases, two of the most ravaging illnesses in
the West, is higher in people in high sp6schological distress; and lower among
those who have a strong sense of purpose and well-being.
If you are at ease
and happy, cultivating the way, regularly practicing meditation, you will be surpassed
with your ability to communicate with plants and animals. In Hayward, California,
a certain person possesses an old orange tree, its sour fruits littering the ground.
One day this dharma friend of mine gave rise to the thought of speaking to it.
He did it. "O! Orange tree, be kind enough to give me sweet fruits so that
I can offer them to the Buddhas!" He did it many times, while putting fertilizers,
pulling the weeds, watering the tree. The following year, the tree was blooming
profusely, and from then on, its fruits turned sweet. This writer has sampled
one of those. At the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas, someone is capable of talking
to the peacock who leads her chicks to the search for food. He watched mother
peacock and her four chicks not long after they had hatched until their maturity.
The little ones were trained to fly up to a low bough to sleep for the night,
then to higher and higher branches. When called, mother and chicks would immediately
approach. Your mighty mind can speak to plants and trees and animals.
have a sick organ in your body, still your mind, contemplate it, and speak to
it. "O! [Cancerous] growth! I know that because my karma is very heavy and
that's why thou come I'm paying back my karmic retribution. But with sincerity,
I ask thee to go away, in order that I may continue to help the poor and the sick..."
Hold the Great Compassion Mantra, and with utmost sincerity, pray Kuan Yin Bodhisattva
for quelling disasters and healing your illness. If your mind is sincere, you
can evoke a response from Buddhas and Bodhisattvas and Heaven and Earth.
this New Year and with the coming of spring, bring forth a great vow: I shall
lean on my mighty mind to cultivate diligently, overcome sicknesses, my heart
always looking at the Triple Jewel, nurturing my kindness and compassion, and
allowing my wisdom to grow.
Your Maximum Mind, Herbert Benson, M.D., Avon
Books, New York, 1987. This book says that the totality of tentacles numbers 25
followed by 30 zeros.
Angeles body, Timeless Mind, Deepak Chopra, M.D., Harmony
Books, New York, 1993.