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Saturday, July 29, 2006

One Essence

The mind is not just 'oneness' or a singular entity because it manifests in manifold ways. It is not a plurality or many things, either, because these numerous manifestations all have one essence. No one can describe its nature saying, "It is exactly like this!" It is indescribable, unutterable, inconceivable, nonarising, unceasing, and nondwelling, like the essence of space. Mind nature is discovered within the experience of awareness and is cognized individually.

-Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche, "Union of Mahamudra and Dzogchen"

James: This reminds me of the beautiful, "Heart Sutra." Namo Avalokiteshvara Bodhisattva!!! Om Mani Padme Hum!!!

~Peace to all beings~

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alwaysdare said...

Reading that just makes you wonder what the mind really is.

Whatever it is, it sure is special and very powerful. It's a good thing that we can cultivate and improve it :)

M.D. Shellhammer said...

Thanks James,this is right on time. In meditation this morning the idea of unanswerable and unanswered came to mind. The Buddha posited ten undeterminded ideas. The problem is that many people see the unknowable as so much hogwash, never seeing that it is only the mode of cognization that prevents liberation. Like Prometheus we attempt to steal fire from heaven and pay the price of imprisonment metaphorically speaking. Instead of trying to "pull down" the heavens into the limited modality of "describing" "reasoning" "arguing" or "naming" we need a greater way of experiencing whatever reality happens to be. Even to say "sunyata" is somewhat limiting I think.

dragonflyfilly said...

Hi James,
could you please describe the phonetic way to say the Heart Sutra?

Thanks for this post,
love and light,

dragonflyfilly said...

some one called me from Colorado on the 13th of July but i was not here. i tried to phone back today but received a voicemail telling me the mailbox of Product Development Corporation was full, so i could not leave them a message, but i am curious about who they are. Could you look them up in your yellow pages and let me know if you find anything?

thanks in advance,
cheers for now,

dragonflyfilly said...

thanks Mark, for reminding me about "slow, press, roll" and target fixation, in connection with life goals etc.

tried to post a comment at your site but did not realize it is restricted to members only. oh well,

cheers for now,

M.D. Shellhammer said...

Thanks Dragonfly, I didn't realize that was so, so it has been fixed. feel free to post as you like.


"James" said...


Yes, I see the mind as fire. Which if channeled in the right direction can be very beneficial. However, if not channeled correctly is power and energy can destroy everything it comes into contact with.


Indeed. "Oneness" can only be experienced.


I apologize for my confusion. However, could you please clarify what you mean in asking to describe phonetically, "The Heart Sutra?" :) Thanks and you're more then welcome. However, the thanks really goes to the Rinpoche.

As for the Project Development Corp., I looked online and they appear to be all over Colorado in 3 different cities. So, I'm not sure what kind of company it is as I can not find a website or any info. on them. Sorry. :(

dragonflyfilly said...

what i mean by the phonetic way to say the Heart Sutra is like this, say for instance i want to tell someone how to say Philistine i would say "fillis tyne", so i want to know the correct way to say out loud: "Namo Avalokitshvara Bodhisattva" actually, i know how to pronounce Bodhisattva, (well, at least i think i do = Bodice sat va) its just the rest of the phrase i don't, and if one is going to use it, then once should use it correctly, you know what i mean?

"James" said...


Gotcha. Namo=honored, or honored one. Nah moe, Ah vah low kee tesh var ra. :)

However, Avalokiteshvara is not the name of the heart sutra itself. Rather it is the name of the Bodhisattva of Compassion who spoke the Heart Sutra.

"The Heart Sutra is": Prajnaparamita Hridaya Sutra.

Pronounciation: Prahj naw par rah meetah hree dah yah. Sometimes Maha (mah hah) is at the beginning meaning, "great." Thus, Maha prajnaparamita Hridaya Sutra.

Maha=(Great) Prajna=(wisdom) paramita=(beyond) hridaya=(heart, core or essence)


Pronounciation: Om gah teh, gah teh, par rah gah teh, par rah sahm gah teh, bodee svah hah.

Gone, gone
gone beyond
completely gone beyond
Englightenment, svaha!

In other words, it means: Form is emptiness and emptiness is form.

Hope this helps. :)

rama said...

Dear Sir, greetings from Calcutta. I'm very happy to have discovered this blog and look forward to going through the archive. Best regards, rama

"James" said...

Dear Rama,

I welcome you to this humble corner of the internet. May your time here always bring you peace, tranquility and happiness.

A smile and lotus to you. :)

taza said...

hi james!

many thanks for your heart sutra translation!

i am currently on the road, and at home my computer has been on the blink, so blogging is hit-or-miss right now--but wanted to say Hi and Thank You!


"James" said...



You are most welcome dear one. The Heart Sutra is a gem of a teaching. One that explains the essence of Buddhism in my humble opinion.

dragonflyfilly said...

Got it, thanks James,


dragonflyfilly said...

P.S. thanks James, the photo is one that i got when i bought some "pasties" at a craft market....and i added the heart to it for this post...


i have decided to "embrace" my broken-heartedness...maybe then it will begin to heal, (i have been bleeding, metaphorically speaking, for too long now...time to "get over it", hah hah!


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