Question: The Dhyana Technique in Shoden Session # 4 has a most unusual name…Yathabhutam Ho…what does this term mean?
Vajragoni: It essentially means “seeing” the nature of Reality AS IT IS (suchness, or tathata), devoid of phenomenal outflows.
Question: Why is the emphasis here on “seeing”…one would think that the methodology of UBLR would be the opposite…that of “not seeing, or not knowing” in order to link up with the True Nature of the Unborn…I believe the proper term here is apophaticism.
Vajragoni: No, employing apophatic techniques would be improper in Light of the Unborn. The apophatic way is one of pure negation…it is the very act of negating itself and therefore when employed what one is actually engaging in is the act of negating “twice”, since the nature of phenomenal outflows are already “empty” and devoid of self-essence.
Question: So what do you mean by “seeing” here?
Vajragoni: One of the Buddha’s greatest axioms is ehipassiko, meaning “come and see”. It’s saying to not believe in anything that your own experience doesn’t confirm…no matter who says it. There’s great wisdom in this as one comes to “know” the Essential Stature of their Self-Nature through trial and effort, i.e., through one’s own experience rather than accepting blindly the dogmatic statements of others who are purportedly “in the know”.
Question: So you’re saying, then, that one needs to come to experience the essential nature of their Being?
Vajragoni: No, the nature of the Unborn has nothing to do with the categories of Being or Non-Being. This would only plunge one into dualism. Rather, the way of the Unborn is about “pure” seeing rather than being…and we’re not trying here to penetrate into some “other” mystical realm…one comes to directly see and know the nature of the Unborn AS IT IS…with no thing arising nor cessating. The “seeing” has to do with the self-realization of Noble Wisdom and so the one who really does the seeing is the Bodhi-child.
Question: Sorry, but you’ve completely lost me here.
Vajragoni: Do you recall that the self-realization of Noble Wisdom is the process wherein Mind awakens to the truth of ITs inner recesses and thus comes to the realization that all that is seen is seen of the Mind ITself?
Question: Vaguely, yes…
Vajragoni: Well, then, your vagueness reveals that you’re still trying to comprehend this with your own sensate faculties, which are composed out of the five Skandhas and hence inadequate to “see” the truth of this Noble self-realization.
Question: Well, then, how will I ever come to see and know the nature of what you’re saying?
Vajragoni: There is no “I” here…When one continually looks at the phenomenal world through the conventional eyes of the “I” one develops the pattern of becoming habitually enslaved to the ongoing phenomena…something known as dependent origination. The “I” or more rightly, the “ego”, mistakenly believes that it is in control of the phenomena when in fact the exact opposite is true: it is dependent upon it for its very illusionary existence. When “I” gets in the way like many floating clouds, the “sky” or your Actual Self (Unborn Mind, Original Nature) is obscured. There is a way, however, to pierce through those clouds…and that is through the Illuminative Light of the Unborn that, in actuality, antecedes all phenomena. Recollect the Sky and try not to focus too much on the clouds; the clouds represent all of those confused thoughts and emotions, which are the offspring of the “I”. The Real and Actual Self is the rightful master, so turn-about and rightfully Recollect It. In this way you will be able to foster Right Mindfulness.
Question: So how do I…err, excuse me…how is Right Mindfulness fostered through the turnabout?
Vajragoni: There is only one way, and that is to become attuned to the very vivifying core of Noble Wisdom’s self-realization…the Bodhi-child…because, as Yathabhutam Ho points out, it is only through the Bodhi-child that the turn-about is initiated through the Unborn Recollective Resolve.
Question: Is that why the Dhyana Technique in this session is about strengthening the awareness muscles, or the Recollective Resolve of the Bodhi-child?
Question: O.K., so what’s actually happening during this technique? I see that you have also involved the Dragon Eye of Tathata Chakra to a great extent.
Vajragoni: Yes, and that’s why the hand positions are as such. The lower hand on the Dantian represents the connection to the Primordial Child of Light while the upper hand on the forehead (Dragon Eye of Tathata) opens up the mystical eye of perception that empowers the Bodhi-child to “see”, meaning Recollect the Shining Essential Stature of the Unborn Mind. Now, perception here does not mean conventional perception in the fashion of knowing through the senses; rather, it’s a transcendental perception or “awareness” (Vidyaa) that is free from all subject–object duality. So, the process of Recollection is not attainable through ordinary cognitive processes, but through a radical turn-about (paravrtti) in the deepest seat of consciousness (Amala-vijnana) that penetrates to the core (true nature) of the Unborn; thus, “True Seeing” is initiated through Tathatic Unborn Reikian Light. In time, through consistent practice of this dhyana technique, the UBLR adept will become infused with the self-realization of Noble Wisdom and will come to “see” the nature of Reality (Dharmadhatu) through the Unborn Eyes of the Bodhi-child.
Question: So, from what you’ve just said, does the placing of the upper hand on the Dragon Eye of Tathata down to the one resting on the Dantian at the conclusion of the technique mean that the process of “true seeing” is in effect sealed?
Vajragoni: Indeed, one intuitively now “sees” the difference between truth and illusion.
Question: Hmmm…so, the Bodhi-child is actually one’s “intuition”?
Vajragoni: In a manner of speaking, yes…although it’s a highly refined intuition that is instilled with heightened Vidyaa and not one’s conventional intuition that is still perfumed with traces of avidya.
Vajragoni: Yes, much like a piece of fabric that is soiled with certain substances that leave a lingering trace, so does one’s conditioned habit energy leave lingering traces within the conventional mind as defiled seeds from within the Alaya- vijnana become activated through avidya (ignorance, or not-knowing due to the habitual clinging to samsaric experiencing).
Shoden Session #4: Yathabhutam Ho
Empowering the Bodhi-child to Recollect ITs Primordial Stature: The process in which the Bodhi-child recollects its rightful Unborn home is called yathabhutam; in essence this is learning to see with Unborn Eyes the very vivifying Nature of the Source ITself. It’s only through the Power of Bodhi that one can learn to deconstruct (prapancopasama) all those unruly animations (prapanca) that cloud the clarity of Unborn Light; hence one will discover that it is only through the Bodhi-child that the “turn-about” is initiated through Unborn Recollective Resolve.
Dhyana Technique: In order to strengthen the awareness muscles (Recollective Resolve) of the Bodhi-Child practice the following:
Yathabhutam Ho: This technique purifies the meridians of the rupakaya thus empowering the True Light of Tathata. The hand on the Dantian (or Bodhi Chakra) represents a connection with the Primordial Child of Light; the upper hand on the forehead (or the Dragon Eye of Tathata Chakra) opens up the mystical inner-eye of perception. When you lower the hand from the Dragon Eye of Tathata down to join the hand at the Dantian, you are awakening and empowering the hidden Dharma-child to Recollect ITs shining essential and primordial nature; thus, True Seeing is initiated through Tathatic Unborn Reikian Light.
- Sit and gassho. This helps to focus the mind and awaken the Recollective Resolve. Gently close your eyes.
- Place one hand on the Dantian and the other hand on the forehead.
- Connect with the energy of the Dragon Eye of Tathata at the forehead. Remain in this position for 5 minutes.
- Remove your hand from the Dragon Eye of Tathata and place it on top of the hand that is resting on the Dantian. Remain in this position for 25 minutes.
- Gassho: Give thanks to your Unborn Spirit.
*As a footnote, the following quote is worth pondering in reference to this technique and series as a whole:
To see Yathābhūtam is to at once recognize all as Mind itself; the Solitary.
Sho-Fu. Yathabhutam: The Convergence of the Eastern Esoteric Traditions (Kindle Locations 114-115). Wingspan Press. Kindle Edition.—well worth the read.