The eternal dance

The eternal dance

I often find myself thinking about enlightenment… wondering what it would feel like. For most of us maybe we don’t really even understand what it means and may wonder ‘just what is enlightenment?’

Sometimes I like to think of it as a beautiful dance. Ordinary life is filled with so much pain and self concern, but for enlightened beings that no longer exists. They’ve seen through the illusion of possessions, concern for how others perceive them, ordinary comforts and so forth

At some point they realised all their happiness and suffering depended on their mind and made a decision to take personal responsibility. Then beyond that, having developed the most exquisite and beautiful minds of love and compassion, they took personal responsibility for the welfare and happiness of all living beings. How wonderful!

The eternal dance

The eternal dance through time

So back to the dance….. and this is what I imagine it must feel like. The most beautiful and care free, the selfless beyond self… the most blissful and graceful dance. I imagine I’m dancing with all living beings, sending out my emanations to care for and protect them with impartiality. Gradually guiding them along meaningful and pain-free paths

Of course they don’t realise they’re even in the dance. They’re caught up in day dreams, constantly chasing mirages out of unknowing and confusion. Those same things the Buddhas already let go of long ago, but somehow we continue to think and believe they’re all so important

And so we dance….. this dance is endless and its very nature gives rise to unimaginable waves of bliss. Although most living beings aren’t even aware of me and this dance, we’re all inextricably bound up in it. I know that one day, hopefully very soon, they’ll wake up and realise how much fun there is to have and how the mind truly is a true source of limitless joy and peace

When we wake up we’ll realise how easy it was ‘oh I only needed to let go of that…. stop worrying about this. Turn my attention to that, care for them, leave all concern behind me. Wow, it feels so good. If I’d known it would be so easy and feel so great I would have done it aeons ago!’ Of course in hindsight it will be easy to see this, but it’s not always so easy to see when you’re in the midst of it

And so the Buddhas dance with us, care free and at peace. The dance has been going on since beginningless time, but all that time we’ve been suffering, unaware…. unaware of what we need to do to join them, to be free, and actually how little it would take

Do we believe we can actually attain enlightenment?

Can we progress on the path to enlightenment?

This reminds me of the movie I watched for, I think my 5th birthday party. Mum and Dad hired a video recorder and got The Neverending Story. Wow, it was so cool,. Really magical and reflecting on it, I think there’s a lot to be learnt from it

Remember the boy who was reading the book… Bastian (wow I actually remembered!). Well he was engrossed in the amazing adventure and didn’t even realise he himself had become part of the story. Maybe similar to how you didn’t know you were involved in the dance

Eventually it gets to a point where the whole world is being destroyed, in the book that is, and they need his help. But he doesn’t realise he’s involved or that he even can help. As it begins to dawn on him he still can’t believe he has the power to help them. He simply can’t believe or comprehend that he’s so significant ‘what me?’ he thinks, ‘how can I change anything, how can I help?’

All he had to do was realise he could help and then develop the wish to do so. Maybe our task isn’t quite as easy and straight forward as naming the princess. But I also think it’s nowhere near as difficult as we sometimes make it out to be

Even Ven. Geshe Kelsang Gyatso once said something along the lines of ‘attaining enlightenment is easier and takes less effort than buying a house’. And maybe he also means owning it outright (surely that would be too easy otherwise right!)

The dance of enlightenment

And so we dance, unaware. I love to imagine this dance. It’s the most beautiful and magical dance conceivable. It’s soooo much fun… the steps flow effortlessly and with every step the most amazing bliss pervades my entire being… pervades all worlds and all beings, blessing their minds and gradually drawing them closer to me

The awareness of every step, every breath, every moment is visceral…. every movement giving rise to a great stillness and an all pervading love. I imagine that, as I dance, the space between the steps feels almost infinite now, and within that infinite space, boundless peace and love emanates from every pore of my being

In that enlightened state we find ourself in an endless continuum of love. A boundless universe and finally we come to understand our true purpose, like it could have ever been anything else. Our only function, to unconditionally care for and benefit every living being without exception

This world, it’s not a physical world, it’s beyond the physical world as we know it, with all its busyness and chaos. In this world none of that exists. In this world there is no hatred, no arguing or fighting, no wars or disagreements, no jealousy or greed. In this world only love abounds, and only a deep caring and wishing for all living beings to be completely free arises from it

Sometimes this is what I think enlightenment might be like. I hope to arrive there soon. To finally become aware of this infinite dance I’ve been in since the beginning of time. To attain the state of definite emergence and propel to the state of all-knowing omniscience

And then, when the true nature of my mind is revealed, I’ll experience directly how it pervades the entire universe…. with love and peace, a deep and eternal caring for all. Who knows, maybe I’ll see you there too and we can dance together will all living beings in this eternal and most beautiful dance. The state in which all beings finally experience a true cessation of suffering and experience eternal bliss and peace

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