On “needing” … needing ‘anything’!

There is not a creature whose life is not afflicted by need. And why does my hands tremble and tremor now, had it been not for my severe malnutrition; the weariness of the muscles of my arms having carried an alms bowl full of rice across the village! The body alone, needs. Death and decay is constantly upon it. It feeds, only to avoid death. The bitter taste of decay and repugnant smell of decomposition, is in the chewed food. Then it trembles. It cannot sustain itself. But it brings the mind down. It is the consciousness that faints. The psyche will not die; it never does – but it is reborn. Alas.

What one needs is what one suffers. Nothing is freer, nothing is purer, than needlessness. Freedom and cleanliness together are in the situation of needlessness, total and complete. Imagine him who is thus free and clean; he is one who has no needs anymore. It is so, because this is how the world gets you; it finds what you need, what you ‘think’ you cannot live without, and then enslave you with it. And what is the “world”? It is “others”, those who have what you need; those who can and do give it to you – whatever it is, whomever they are.  They know that you need, they know that you will suffer without having what you need, they know that they can hurt you by denying you of it, they know that you fear losing it, they know that you fear losing them, they know that you fear them. This whole world and everything in it is governed in this way. This is what needing begets; the opposite of freedom and purity: fear.

And for the people, there is a million need: needing pleasure, excitement, stimulation, and companionship; this is at the core. And so there is a million fear: fearing pain, boredom, restlessness, and loneliness; this too is at the core.

But they say: a “bhikkhu”, that is, a “mendicant”, a “son of Buddha”, one who has “gone forth”; gone forth where?!

The body won’t sustain the mind without nutriments and oxygen circulating continuously in the blood stream. Otherwise the consciousness faints. It really faints; I know that for certain! So the problem is not one of pain; pain is welcome; pain is a servant of the noble heart. But for the consciousness to live one and to be used for the sake of transcending its own conditioned existence, the body needs food and safety. So there is also safety: that it is not bleeding, that it is not seriously ill and exhausted, that it is healthy, at least enough, for the task at hand and which is now, Lo, the only one which gives any meaning and value and purpose of life.  If we add to this that going about naked is likely to expose one to manifold forms of violence, then there is need also for clothes to cover the body.

Food, physical safety, and clothes; narrowing it all down to three needs, offers a glimpse at freedom and cleanliness, yet involves also a great deal of fear. For food, perhaps comes about more easily, but not so with clothes, and certainly hardly with safety! There are many reasons for this: the “people” are not benevolent or malevolent; they are all conditioned; and nothing stimulates the impulse of cruelty and violence more than the appearance of weakness and helplessness! Men abuse women, women abuse children, children abuse animals, and all abuse the lone, wandering, silent mendicant! [Despite of the tremendous power residing within his heart, invisible, unseen to others]. A bare skeleton walking about is a ghost that scares people to death; but a skeleton covered with but a tiny sheet of flesh and fabric; that is a fragile human, one which provokes either reverence, or cruelty.

Then there is need and needing, and the suffering, enslavement, servitude, fear, and self-contempt, of need and needing. And I long to needlessness; I long to the freedom and cleanliness of needlessness; I long yet to more aloneness, more seclusion, more poverty, more relinquishment, and more renunciation. This is the right way, this is the fateful way. I long to go forth, even after having gone forth! I long to live the going forth, more fully, more earnestly, more deeply; this is the right way, this is the fateful way. For pain is welcome; pain is a servant of the noble heart.

Suddhāvāsa (In The Pure Abodes)

 ____________________________

 

We will all meet again,
at last,
upon returning to our pure being.
There in the Pure Abodes,
we will all find each other once more.
Remembering the countless past-lives
when our radiance was yet veiled
by the darkness of desire,
blindness,
and suffering.
But we will understand one another,
with boundless
infinite forgiveness.
And we will celebrate our graceful memories
of one another,
when despite of our bodies,
despite of our physical form,
and despite of the world,
we yet amounted to the purities of the Pure Abodes.
Thus will we remind each other:

“Remember when you returned no aversion to me even though I was cruel to you?!
“Remember the life when you awakened every day before dawn to make bread for me?!
“Remember when I was in great distress and pain and you helped me without asking for anything in return?!
“Remember when even though your heart was aching, you nevertheless carried my burden for me in silence?!
“Remember when I appeared at your doorstep in the early morning, holding my empty bowl in modesty, and you gave me with a contented blissful heart the best of the little that you had?!
“Remember when I begged you for an undeserved forgiveness and you immediately gave it to me?!
“Remember when I lived for so long as an angry fool in the warmth of your patience and tolerance?!
“Remember when you advanced to the threshold of danger only because it was there that you could save others from it?!
“Remember how you remained humble despite of others’ glorification of you?!
“Remember how you remained kind despite of the injustices done to you?!
“Remember how you remained open-hearted despite of the evil surrounding you?!
“Remember how you remained compassionate despite of the power that grew in you?!
“Remember how you once gave away everything you have to dwell in the pure freedom and release of the heart of non-possession and homelessness?!”

And so
the radiant gods of the Pure Abodes
will sing their collective song:

“Oh that was you?!”
“Yes that was me!”
“Yes that my heart remembers!”
“Oh that now does make me laugh!”
“And that no longer brings tears and sadness in me!”
“For that I venerate you!”
“For this I thank you!”
“It has never been you and me!
“It has always been the human being!”
“I have forgotten everything about my sorrowful human past!”
“But I remember everything about your benevolent human past!”
“How foolish it all was!”
“What a tremendous battle of the heart!”
“The vanity is over!”
“Gone now is all delusion!”
“The light is indescribable!”
“The bliss, eternal.”
“It is over!”
“It is all over.”

Thus,
my friends,
will we celebrate together
our ultimate radiant freedom,
in the Pure Abodes.
Remembering and smiling
at many thousands and thousands of lives,
that we spent prisoners,
in a realm of perpetual suffering,
a realm of form and desire,
attachment and clinging,
yearning without ending,
seeking but never finding,
losing after gaining,
grieving after delighting,
and death,
after birth.

Thus we all of us,
every single one of us,
will finally meet again.
There in the Pure Abodes,
shall we celebrate together,
our final freedom,
from ignorance,
from delusion,
from desire and aversion,
from all anguish,
envy and hate.
There in the Pure Abodes,
there shall be no more you and I,
there shall only be deathlessness,
a blissful radiance that sweeps every space,
with imperturbable peace,
transcendent presence,
and unconditional compassion.

What Samsara …

The food chain!
Multiplied by
Procreation.
Fear & lust,
And bhava
At the foundation and core.

 

Adoration to the Saint

A Saint would be in no need to hide anything; none of his private actions, feelings, or thoughts, are harmful, resentful, aversive, or desirous. Nothing arises in his heart that can possibly be shameful, reactionary, confused, or uncertain. Imagine what it takes! Imagine what it takes!

Adoration to the Saint.

All the Buddha’s Teaching (Dhamma-Magga-Phala)

The Heart that does not Blame

Like the bare soles of a wandering mendicant,
Or the experienced hands of an aged farmer;
Callous,
Insensitive to the touch,
Unaffected by hardship –
So grows the heart
That blames none for its suffering.

Like the faring of a caterpillar,
Or the flight of a butterfly;
Delicate,
Free of cruelty,
Incapable of hurt –
So grows the heart
That blames none for their suffering.