“Whatever arises in your mind, if you don’t provoke or follow it—if you simply let it be—it will automatically dissolve into the dharmakaya state. This is known as the “guru of self-liberating awareness,” which is none other than Guru Padmasambhava.
This stanza is referring not only to the negative emotions, but to positive, virtuous thoughts as well. Thoughts of loving-kindness, compassion, appreciation, devotion, and joy—if you look into the heart of any of these you see that they also do not substantially exist. Therefore, even though these are beautiful thoughts, if you grasp and cling to them you are creating obstacles for yourself on the path to buddhahood. Furthermore, your ability to help others is extremely limited if you are attached to and believe in the solidity of your beautiful thoughts. The teachings say that when we fail to see the emptiness of negative thoughts we bind ourselves with chains of hemp; when we fail to see the emptiness of positive thoughts we bind ourselves with chains of gold. The material of the chains is different, but the bondage is the same.
Beautiful thoughts are compassion. Compassion is emptiness. Compassion and emptiness are inseparable. This is what we need to realize. Here Karma Chagme teaches that beautiful thoughts, or compassion—also known as “skillful means”—are the tools we use to help all beings. These tools become truly powerful only when we realize they are emptiness. The realization of emptiness is also known as “wisdom.” Realizing the union of skillful means and wisdom is the true cause and condition that brings all beings to the enduring happiness of buddhahood.”
Venerable Khenpo Rinpoches
2010 PSL One Month Dzogchen Retreat on Guru Padmasambhava’s Seven Chapter Prayer
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