Thursday, March 27, 2014



Ratnasambhava is one of the Five Family Buddhas.

His pure land is Gunavyuha, the Array of Qualities, representing the wealth of complete and perfect buddhahood.  His color is yellow, representing the activity of enriching and increasing, like the bountiful increase in crops just before the summer harvest.  His right hand is in the mudra of supreme generosity, completely purifying egotism into the wisdom of equality, equalness.  His left hand holds a precious jewel- radiating peace, prosperity and fulfilling his own benefit and the benefit of countless others. 

He rides a precious horse possessed with all the major and minor marks.  The horse is fearless, never startled.  His composure is perfect with a soft mane and flowing tail.  His tireless hooves are silent, light and unfaltering.  The horse rides on the wind, the natural vehicle of movement and change.  In Tibet, it is believed that prayers are carried on the wind.  Prayer flags are often known as the 'wind-horse', and making aspirational prayers and prayers of dedication give energy to that horse.

In regard to our own mind and self, Ratnasambhava represents the aggregate of vedana, which is often translated as sensation.  But sensation here really refers to how we experience the world and mental events.  In the Abhidharma-samuccaya:

What is the absolutely specific characteristic of vedana? It is to experience.

So the way in which we determine our experience (or our life) as being positive, negative or neutral is the aggregate of vedana.  We are presented with a situation and we determine it is positive while someone else might determine it is negative.  Who is correct?

When we deeply contemplate and integrate the wisdom and symbolism of Ratnasambhava, we can learn how to transmute any situation into one of great wealth and purpose.  Whatever we are presented with, if we meet the situation with the mudra of generosity we can overcome the narrow confines of our ego.  We can approach the world with openness and tenderness.  We can transmute selfishness into the wisdom of equality.  That precious jewel you are holding in your left hand, that is bodhicitta, the intention to awaken from your own darkness and delusion in order to benefit others.

So you ride your horse, you train in fearlessness (which doesn't mean there is no fear).  You train in composure, in honesty and integrity.  You ride the wind by making heartfelt aspiration and dedication prayers.  Give voice to the wishes of others.  Give voice to your own wishes. 

If you practice in this way, you will come to experience the wealth of Ratnasambhava.  Summer is coming.  Are you ready?  

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