path

path

Okay, now path. Now we should talk about the path. The Buddhist philosophy or the view of non duality is not just an intellectual exercise that is written somewhere, so that you can read for your intellectual satisfaction and put it back on the bookshelf. The fundamental Buddhist view is something that can be realized and actualized. Let’s go back to the dream again. Let’s say that you are dreaming, having a nightmare. Nightmare of falling from a cliff. In the middle of, as you are falling, in the middle, you realize you have been dreaming. What will you do? Actually, you don’t have to do anything. You might even want to enjoy because you know that this is not really happening but at the same time it’s happening. So you know normally you cannot fly. But in the dream you also know how to fly. So taking advantage of that. Because you know, ultimately you are not going to get hurt. Ultimately there is no such thing as cliff. When you can do that, it’s called liberation. In other words, nirvana. So as you know, as you can see, the Buddhist concept of something like a heaven or the nirvana is really freedom from obsession to this dualistic phenomena. Going back to the dream again. When you dream that you are falling from a cliff. If you dream, that you are falling from a cliff, you know very well, before you dreamed there was no cliff. Before you even sleep, you know there is no cliff. And during the sleep and during the dream, during the nightmare, is there really a cliff? No. Lastly, when you wake up from the nightmare, you have this amazing relief that you have never had a cliff and falling. Even the relief is fake because you have never been falling from the cliff. So how can you feel relieved from not falling. That is nirvana. And that is something that we can achieve. It is not something that you read and put it on the bookshelf. It is something that you can achieve. Okay now here comes the big question. In order to achieve this then we have all the practices. And all this practices they appear to be very dualistic. Why is that? Because if you are already dreaming, you cannot really sort of – okay if you are already having a nightmare, only way to wake up from that nightmare is going through the nightmare isn’t it. You cannot sort of wake up from that nightmare and then have a liberation of the nightmare that doesn’t exist. So the concept of waking up from a nightmare does exist because there is a nightmare exist. Let me explain this. This is a little bit twisting here. If you are having a nightmare like falling from the cliff, bucket of cold water at you by somebody helps, because you wake up. But is the bucket of the water making the cliff disappear? No. Why? Because the cliff does not exist. So the bucket of cold water is not destroying any problems. But still the bucket of cold water relatively speaking woke you up. So in Buddhism we have lots of bucket water. Shaving head is one of those bucket water. Going to the caves and do like retreats, that is another bucket water. Prayers, meditations, incense sticks, lamp offerings, statue buildings, stupa circumambulation, all of these is like bucket of water.

Fundamental View of Buddhism, Moscow 2010

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