A Book of Dreams: Bardo 2, Conclusion

I believe that the appearance of a “white-dragonfly” beating outside my window the other day is a most auspicious sign indeed; its dominate symbolization in many diverse cultures is one of transformation. Its “white coloration” could also be a signifier that the Clear Light of self-realization is trying to break through. It’s also an interesting synchronicity that this study of Bardo Realm Two began with another symbol of transformation, a butterfly—a cousin of sorts to the dragonfly. This particular Bardo is indeed heavy-laden with symbols of transformation occurring at many levels. Like characters in a dream-play our lives are livid with the changing-tides of emotion and reason—a mad soap-opera filled with love and hate; of fear and resolve; of ignorance and wisdom. Hopefully the pieces of this constantly shifting landscape can eventually come together and awaken one from the dream of samsara into that Clear-Light of self-transformation. One of the other illuminating insights that can be gleamed from all of our bardo-journeys is that we do not travel alone. One of the greatest conceits is that we can somehow procure our much-needed transformation alone, simply via the way of one’s stored merits and personalized efforts. On the Lankavatarian Path the realization dawns that one is not reliant upon the strength of a personal-self (a collection of mere aggregates), but rather upon the intervention and enduring Selfhood of the Tathagatas themselves. What awaits the developing pupa (gotra) once the skandhic-cocoon is dissolved? The following brief, yet poignant, Bodhi-Pearl from Tozen nicely sums-up our time in Bardo Realm Two and offers a glimpse of what this Noble Self-realization reveals.

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