Do not pursue the past. Do not lose yourself in the future. The past no longer is. The future has yet to come. Look deeply at life as it is in the very here and now. The wise person knows how to live in mindfulness day and night.
Yab-Yum. Mother-father. Yin-yang. The mystical union of the active force (masculine) with wisdom (prajna or the feminine force). A fusion that is necessary to overcome the false duality of appearances in the striving toward spiritual enlightenment.
Twelve Links in the Chain of Interdependent Co-Arising
Six sense organs (Eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body, mind)
Coming to be, being, becoming
Old age (decay) and death
Each link contains the other links. All teachings of Buddhism are based on interdependent co-arising. If a teaching is not in accord with interdependent co-arising it is not the teaching of the Buddha. Buddha taught that everything is both cause and effect. Interdependent co-arising goes beyond our concepts of time and space. The one contains all.
The presence of light means the absence of dark. The presence of day means the absence of night. The presence of ignorance means the absence of understanding. The Buddha said, “When ignorance comes to an end, understanding arises.”
“At least once every 15 minutes, we need to practice letting go. Bear in your heart no hatred, utter no unkind words, remain always compassionate, with no hostility or ill will. The Seven Factors of Awakening are the practices of love.” – Thich Nhat Hahn
A human being is composed of Five aggregates (skandas): form, feelings, perception, mental formations, and consciousness.
Form – Means our body including the five sense organs and our nervous system.
Feelings – There is a river of feelings inside of us. Our feelings are formations, impermanent and without substance.
Perceptions – Noticing, naming, conceptualizing, perceiver and perceived. All suffering is born from wrong perceptions. Understanding, the fruit of meditation, can dissolve our wrong perceptions and liberate us. “Where there is perception, there is deception.” -Diamond Sutra.
Mental Formations – There are 51 mental formations present in our store consciousness in the form of seeds. Every time a seed is touched it manifests on the upper level of our consciousness as a mental formation. With daily practice we are able to nourish and develop wholesome mental formations and transform unhealthy ones. Freedom, non-fear, and peace are the result of this practice.
Consciousness – Consciousness in this context means store consciousness, which is the basis of everything that we are, the ground of all our mental formations. Consciousness contains all other aggregates and is the basis of their existence. Consciousness is simultaneously both collective and individual.
The five aggregates are interconnected or as Thich Nhat Hahn says, “Inter-are.”