A Lotus For You, A Buddha To Be

July 8, 2012

In his short book of mindfulness phrases, Thich Nhat Hanh suggests that when greeting people you should think the phrase, “A Lotus for you, a Buddha to be.” When I do this, I always visualize having a large flower in my hands, and offering it to the other person.

For some reason my meditation skills (and accompanying lucid dreams and OBEs) have returned during the last week. Yesterday afternoon, a day after a friend came to visit and we went up to the mountains, I basically woke up in an altered state, and stayed that way for many hours. I decided to take a short nap, which turned out to be about six hours, and during this time, I kept practicing this phrase over and over again.

I first imagined greeting some people I don't particularly like, and said out loud in the dream, “A Lotus for you, a Buddha to be,” holding out a large flower as I spoke this. For some reason the dream morphed into people killing me in a variety of ways, stabbing my body, or shooting me, and only thinking, “A Lotus for you, a Buddha to be.” I continued imagining them doing all sorts of horrible things to me and to friends and family members and thinking only that phrase.

Imagining things like this that haven’t happened like that are one thing, but they still aren’t as real as things that have happened, so I thought of things from my own past that have happened, including business partners who did wrongful things, friends who I felt may have done something against me, and so on, and just repeated this phrase with deep, heartfelt sincerity, “A Lotus for you, a Buddha to be.”

It’s hard to describe my current mental state, but right now this is very easy. I found it to be a powerful way of offering forgiveness, and also recognizing the dreamlike quality of life: “In this realm, you can kill, defile, and mutilate this body, you can commit all sorts of harmful acts against this being, but you aren’t doing anything at all to affect the true me.”

(The “realm” reference comes from watching Thor last night. :)

I’m out of time for writing today, so I’ll leave you with a quote I’ve shared here before from the book, Life In Relation To Death: “In enlightenment, death has no relevance to one's state of being.”

Follow Up

I ended up writing a friend about yesterday’s long “altered state” experience, and wrote this:

“I spent about six hours yesterday in an altered state, and experienced an overpowering form of love. In vision after vision, people killed me in many different ways, and I just kept forgiving them ... I felt very strongly that what they were doing wasn’t important (for lack of better words), that they were only killing the ‘physical me,’ they felt they had their reasons for doing it, and I forgave them each time, like they were children making a mistake. I don’t have the vocabulary to do it justice, but I think the basic feelings were forgiveness and compassion, and it felt like a very true form of love.”

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