Day 85 – Intentions


Zencast 84 – The Bodhisattva Path

Anybody who has a notion of difficulty, is not a Bodhisattva. – The Buddha

When I hear about the Bodhisattva path I get overwhelmed. I wonder how anyone can take the vows and then continue to function as a person when there are so many people out there in the world to help and liberate. I get tired just thinking about it.

Yet, I am continually inspired by those whose intention in life is to not only liberate themselves, but also help liberate others and alleviate them from suffering. I guess this is ultimately what I hope to do in some small way with the book I want to write. Therefore, ultimately, one of my intentions is to move towards this Bodhisattva path with my own practice.

Gil says that working with mindfulness is one of the ways we can integrate the Bodhisattva path into our lives without realizing we are doing so. It will help the path to become something we naturally do without thought before hand. With mindfulness, serving and helping others will no longer be our intention, it will simply be our path.

I am inspired continually by many of the Bodhisattva’s we have in this day and age, who themselves don’t get the ‘screen’ time they deserve. It’s so sad that for the most part our culture favors sensationalism and controversy over those who choose instead to dedicate their lives to helping others.

Here are some of the Bodhisattvas who inspire me:

Where I am in my practice right now dictates how selfish I must be in order to become stronger and more dedicated in my intentions and path. I’m really still only on the starting block when it comes to my Buddhist practice, so there are still years to go before I believe I will be able to forego my own practice in order to aid others in theirs. It may take a long time to get there, but I’m hoping that one day I can work towards the Bodhisattva ideals and live a life that is less about me and more about us all. Until then, this is the best I can do. And that is enough.
Insight Meditation Center has just started the process of requesting danas (donations) for their new retreat center. Please consider visiting the Zencast site to donate. From what I’ve read on the website, their retreats are free of charge, so if you donate you could always consider it a pre-payment for a retreat if you fancy visiting California!

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