Saturday, March 10, 2007

Dharma Quote: Primordial State

Snow Lion Publications' Dharma Quote of the Week
An inexpressible, self-arisen expanse
Without the names "samsara" and "nirvana."

Here, "self-arisen" means the primordial state. It is not something we can fully express with words or concepts. It's beyond words or concepts. The nature of all is not biased; it is not restricted to one or another. The nature of all exists in one identical state. That ground, that nature, does not have any name such as samsara or nirvana. That is the foundation, that is the ground. It is beyond samsara and nirvana. Not knowing the ground means wandering in samsara. If you recognize this ground, if you truly experience this ground, buddhahood is attained. That is the fruition. That is the result of our practice and our path.

...The ground, that fundamental state of simplicity, is the origin of all elaborations. This pure basic state is like a simple artist's canvas. We paint different images on this canvas. We can paint the image of a buddha, and it becomes very pure, beautiful, and inspiring to look at. We can also paint a devil on the same canvas, which can create our fundamental suffering, our basic pain. However, the basis of both is the same simple state of canvas that is completely pure and totally free from the images we project on it. It is totally free, whether that image is a buddha or a devil. That is the origin.

~ From Penetrating Wisdom: The Aspiration of Samantabhadra by the Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche, published by Snow Lion Publications.

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