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Advice from Zandtaomed
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Zanshadtao



Appendix A Dangers of the Threshold

My path has crossed a threshold that has led me to experiencing egoic dangers. My quest began to cross this threshold when I looked at the second mystery of Eckhart – the evolution of consciousness during path in Viveka-Zandtao (but because of disturbances I associate with these egoic dangers I focussed only on the first mystery). I completely crossed over when I studied Thay’s Awakening of the Heart which Thay talks of as Prajnaparamita. That study of Thay has not finished but it appears to me that Thay’s teachings cope with the threshold – given his personal history it had to.

As soon as I crossed the threshold my engagement with daily life got screwed. I do the best I can but I still have what I call “warts’n’all” – selves and egos that are still a part of my life. With MwB taking me towards atammayata, these attachments are getting less and less, but once I crossed the threshold they exploded. To me this explosion is the danger of crossing the threshold. In Thay’s teaching of “Awakening the Heart” the first sutra is the Diamond Sutra. To me it is the understanding of the Diamond Sutra that you first need to grasp if you are going to risk this threshold. I did not grasp it, and this led to disruptions. Now I grasp it a little, and it is a lifeline for coping with the threshold. “What the Tathagata has called the highest, transcendent understanding is not, in fact, the highest, transcendent understanding. That is why it is truly the highest, transcendent understanding” [Awakening p62%]. Confusing but recognise a “highest transcendent understanding”.

“The fruit of the highest, most fulfilled, awakened mind is realized through the practice of all wholesome actions in the spirit of nonself, non-person, non-living being, and non-life span. Subhuti, what are called wholesome actions are in fact not wholesome actions. That is why they are called wholesome actions” [Awakening p64%] Perform wholesome actions.

“Subhuti, a bodhisattva gives rise to virtue and happiness but is not caught in the idea of virtue and happiness. That is why the Tathagata has said that a bodhisattva does not need to build up virtue and happiness” [Awakening p64% ]. Build up virtue and happiness.

“Subhuti, someone who gives rise to the highest, most fulfilled, awakened mind should know that this is true of all dharmas, should see that all dharmas are like this, should have confidence in the understanding of all dharmas without any conceptions about dharmas. Subhuti, what is called a conception of dharmas, the Tathagata has said is not a conception of dharmas. That is why it is called a conception of dharmas” [Awakening p64% ]. Follow the Dhamma.

Basically whatever we do after crossing this threshold, in daily life our path remains the same – without attaching to the path. Crossing the threshold our path has entered dangers because of daily life. Why bother with daily life when there are these teachings. This is bypassing, and it is not the meaning of the teachings; it is a danger of the teachings. More than ever there is a need for 100% engagement with daily life, this is the teaching and not the teaching. It sounds confusing and contradictory. But after this threshold to develop we reinforce our commitment to engagement with daily life. We teach as the Buddha Taught, we follow our paths as the Buddha Taught, but we can also follow our paths over this threshold. But this subtle distinction is vast but dangerous. With no self there is no danger, but can we ever say there is no self when we are alive? Through the new wisdom, perhaps we can but on the way coping with self is harder. We need to be more committed to the path without any attachment. That sounds awful and comparative but in language that is maybe a way it can be expressed.

Moving across this threshold take the warning of the Diamond Sutra and be as disciplined as possible in holding to your path - for me atammayata.


Zandtao Meditation page Advice from Zandtaomed


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