‘This is the self before something runs through our consciousness.’ Katagiri RoshiMorning meditation: This is the Self Before.
The Joy of Meeting
The joy of meeting someone you love, the sadness of losing a close friend, the richness of a vivid dream, the serenity of a walk through a garden on a spring day, the total absorption of a deep meditative state – these things and other like them constitute the reality of our experience of consciousness. regardless of the content of any one of these experirences, no one in his or her right mind would doubt their reality. Any experience of consciousness –from the most mundane to the most elevated — has a certain coherence and, at the same time, a high degree of privacy, which means that it always exists from a particular point of view. The experience of consciousness is entirely subjective. The paradox, however, is that despite the indubitable reality of our subjectivity and thousands of years of philosophical examination, there is little consensus on what consciousness is. Science, with its characteristic third-person method – the objective perspective from the outside – has made strikingly little headway in this understanding. ~ The Universe in a Single Atom by His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama
“One who does not exchange his own happiness for the suffering of others surely does not achieve Buddhahood. How could one find happiness even in the cycle of existence?
Not to mention the next life, even in this life, a desired goal of a servant who does not do his work and of a master who does not pay out the wages cannot be accomplished”
~ Pandita Shantideva (From the text Bodhicharyavatara or Introduction to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life)
In the way that a gardener knows how to transform compost into flowers, we can learn the art of transforming anger, depression, and racial discrimination into love and understanding. This is the work of meditation. — Thich Nhat Hanh
Theory of Emptiness
One of the most important philosophical insights in Buddhism comes from what is known as the theory of emptiness. At its heart is the deep recognition that there is a fundamental disparity between the way we perceive the world, including our own existence in it, and the way things actually are. In our day-to-day experience, we tend to relate to the world and to ourselves as if these entities possess self-enclosed, definable, discrete, and enduring reality. For instance, if we examine our own conception of selfhood, we will find that we tend to believe in the presence of an essential core to our being, which characterizes our individuality and identity as a discrete ego, independent of the physical and mental elements that constitute our existence. the philosophy of emptiness reveals that this is not only a fundamental error but also the basis for attachment, clinging, and the development of our numerous prejudices.
~ His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama, The Universe In A Single Atom