The Bodhisattva Cleansed of All Karmic Obstructions arose from his seat in the midst of the assembly, bowed and then prostrated himself at the feet of the Tathagata and then circumambulated about him three times to the right. He then knelt down and with hands clasped in a manner depicting sublime devotion, invoked the Blessed One.
“World Honored One of Great Compassion! You have expounded to us at considerable length concerning the practices of the Mind-ground of all Tathagatas, thus empowering us to clearly see with the eyes of new-found Wisdom. Having now seen the supreme and arduous tasks of the Tathagata throughout the ages, efforts that to him seem but an instance of thought, we Bodhisattvas have been greatly inspired.”
“World Honored One, since the intrinsic nature of the Enlightened Mind is pure, what has caused sentient minds to become diseased and adulterated thus preventing them to enter the innate purity of the Unborn? I humbly implore you to reveal the nature of all dharmas so that this assembly and all sentient beings in the degenerate age may employ your teachings thus guiding us into the unknown future.”
After invoking his pleas in three-fold fashion, he then once again prostrated himself on the ground before the feet of the Blessed One.
Bodhisattva Cleansed of All Karmic Obstructions: this Bodhisattva is in league with those who have reached the level of development that is housed in the Dharma-Cloud (Dharmamegha):
This is the level immediately before Buddhahood in which the last traces of karmic afflictive traces are removed. Their minds are thus cleansed of the subtlest traces of karmic afflictions. They manifest in limitless forms for the benefit of others and transcend ordinary laws of time and space. They are able to place entire world systems into a single pore without diminishing them or increasing the size of the pore. Bodhisattvas on this level receive a form of empowerment from innumerable Buddhas. “The Bodhisattva on the tenth ground receives supreme empowerment by means of great rays of light emitted by the Buddhas of the ten-directions.” This empowerment helps them in removing the remaining (karmic) obstructions to omniscience and gives them added confidence and strength. At the final moment of this stage they enter into a meditative state called the “vajra-like meditative stabilization,” in which the subtlest remaining obstacles to Buddhahood are overcome. When they arise from this concentration, they arise as Buddhas. At this moment the ‘Alterverse’ becomes directly and completely aware of its own ‘empty’ infinite transcendent nondual luminous awareness. (Graham Smetham, Quantum Path to Enlightenment.)
Presently, the World-Honored One addressed the Bodhisattva Cleansed of All Karmic Obstructions, “Most outstanding, most outstanding indeed! Noble One, for the sake of the assembly and sentient beings in the degenerate age you have marvelously enquired from the Tathagata concerning such skillful methods. Listen well, and I shall unfold it all before you.”
Bodhisattva Cleansed of All Karmic Obstructions listened with silent attentiveness with the rest of the assembly.
“Virtuous ones, since time immemorial sentient beings have been attached and dependent upon such notions as a personalized-self and a sentient-lifespan. They take these inverted viewpoints and consider them to be the essence of the *real-self* and in doing so give rise to dualistic mindsets. These dependently false viewpoints give rise to all the illusory paths of karma. Once they are karmic-based they transmigrate from lifetime to lifetime, which leads to the inevitable distaste for samsaric-existence. In so doing they yearn for a false-notion of nirvana and hence are forever prevented from entering the true nirvanic realm of Primordial Enlightenment. It is not enlightenment that rejects those who are capable of realization, rather it is that those who may be capable of entry never awaken. Therefore, whether thought-patterns are agitated or settled-down, both conditions are the result of a self-deluded mindset. And why? Because the self-induced ignorance is perceived to be mind’s master since beginningless time, the result being that sentient beings are unable to give rise to their own wisdom-eye. All the sundry natures of body and its body-consciousness is nothing but avidya. Such minds link to other polluted mindsets and resent all others who contradict their assertions. Such inerrant ones seek to preserve this false ego-mind at all costs. Such nurturance of ignorance prevents one from ever cultivating the Way of the Unborn.”
“Virtuous ones, what are the marks of an ‘ego-mind’? It is the primary experience of sentient beings. It falsely perceives the vainglorious carnal-body to be preeminent in everything, yet when this carcass falls ill and is need of such treatments like acupuncture, the awareness of this all-too-awful weight of the ego-mind returns. Hence, the ego-mind “feels” its awful marks all too readily. Yea, even if this carnal-beast should witness the pure Nirvanic Mind-realm of the Tathagata, it would be just mere mind-prattle of the spoiled ego-mind.”
“Virtuous ones, what are the marks of ‘a person’? It is that which is experienced as real in the ego-mind of sentient beings. Yet, once this ego-mind is cognized as such, it is never recognized in the same fashion again. The same principle applies when cognizing what is considered to be non-self. Hence, this cognition is constitutive of the marks of a purported person. Even if such a mindset approached the noble shores of nirvana, it would be just a false-impression within the ego-mind. This is all indicative of traces of “cognition” that is the mechanism of what constitutes the apparent person.”
“Virtuous ones, what are the marks of a ‘sentient being’? It is the experience beyond self-witnessing and is limited by the cognizing ego-mind. Take for instance the example of one who says, “I am a sentient being”. What is referred here in this instance as ‘sentient being’ in actuality does not indicate a person or another sentient-presence. Why so? Since this sentient being is a concretized-creation, it does not indicate another apparent self. Thus, all experiences of apparent awakening are mere shadow reflections of the ego-mind and an ostensible other. Thus the faulty-awareness of having realized an apparent something refers to the marks of a sentient being.”
“Virtuous ones, what are the marks of a ‘lifespan’? It is the ego-mindset of sentient beings attempting to shed light in an illuminative-fashion of what they have apparently realized. Hence, karmic-consciousness and wisdom cannot rightly perceive themselves. This is comparable to the jaundiced root of life. It is analogous to hot water melting ice. After the ice melts in the liquid, there is no longer any concretized-ice that is aware of the melting process. Hence, the non-existence of a false-self and the apparent awareness of such a self is just like this.”
“Virtuous ones, if sentient beings in the degenerate age do not comprehend this makeup of the “four characteristics” of an ego-mind, even after attempting to cultivate the path after many eons of lifetimes it still remains the “mark of attachment” to false notions. They are thus forever prevented from enjoying the fruits of cultivated sagehood. Why? Because they falsely assume these degenerate aspects of the ego-self for the Nirvanic-mind and their false-awakenings for spiritual accomplishments. It can be likened to a man who falsely mistakes a thief for his son. Thus, his wealth will never increase. Why? Because the lover of a false self also loves a phantasmagoric nirvana. Likewise, one who hates the ego-mind will also bear an extreme hatred for samsara. Not realizing that one’s attachments are representations of the samsaric-mind, one merely singles out life and death by calling it non-liberation.”
“How, then, does one recognize the dharma of non-liberation? If sentient beings practicing apparent Bodhi come to regard their own ego-mind as their own source of purity, they will never be empowered to penetrate to the root of this false-self mechanism. If someone were to praise this degenerate-dharma, the worldling celebrates with great joy and immediately attempts to lead them down this false-path. Yet, if someone criticizes their false-attainment, the worldling becomes filled with great anger and resentment.”
“Hence, one can discern the mark of the false self-hood. For this beast is imprisoned in the storehouse consciousness forevermore.”
“Virtuous ones, if these aspiring practitioners do not erase the marks of the ego-mind they will be unable to enter into the Pure Mind-realm of Primordial Enlightenment. Virtuous ones, if emptiness of self is known, then there is no one there to eradicate the false self beast. By continually clinging to this no-self while at the same time claiming to proclaim the Holy Dharma, it is resultant of being unable to quieten the fiend. The same holds true for sentient being and lifespan.”
“Virtuous ones, such damaged sentient minds of the degenerate age consider their own illness to be the practice of the Holy Dharma. They are the most pitiable of creatures. Even though they attempt to struggle through, they merely exacerbate their wretched condition and will never enter into the hallowed halls of the Unborn.”
“Virtuous ones, since sentient beings of the Dharma-ending age do not recognize these four false signs of the degenerate-self, they erroneously conclude that they are somehow still in league with the practice of the Tathagata. Some assert to have actually achieved attainments when the opposite is true. When they see others clearly advancing along the hallowed path of the Unborn, they become jealous and unruly. This is the result of not sanitizing their polluted ego-mind, thereby prohibiting themselves from ever becoming awakened to Primordial Enlightenment.”
“Virtuous ones, sentient beings of the degenerate age who wish to enter the Right Path, yet never exert themselves to fully awaken in mind and spirit, merely extend surface-level intellectualizations thereby strengthening the viewpoint of the false-self. Rather, they should strive diligently to alleviate their vexations! Under all circumstances they should always strive to never give rise to craving, hatred, greed, attached love, arrogance, flattery, evilness of intent, envy and jealousy. In such manner will the infernal grasping and wrong affection for the false-self beast and others be quenched. Whenever this is faithfully done, the Buddha assures them that they will gradually reach spiritual accomplishment. Additionally, they should always seek-out Genuine Teachers of the Buddhadharma, thus preventing them from ever falling into erroneous viewpoints. However, should hatred and envy enter their minds during the process of finding a suitable teacher, they will never enter into the Oceanic Mind of Primordial Enlightenment.”
In order to reinforce this Mind-teaching, the World-Honored One spoke thus in verse:
Cleansed of All Karmic Obstructions,
you should know that because of love and attachment to
this false-self, sentient beings have been bound to transmigration
since beginningless time.
Being unable to thus sever the four marks of this no-self beast,
the Blessed Bodhimind will never be realized.
Minds harboring such demons as attached love and hatred,
perversion of thought and evil intent,
such confused harbingers of these hellions will never
enter into the unsoiled citadel of the Unborn Mind.
To enter the Realm of the Enlightened,
all desire, fear, and delusion must first be extinguished.
When all attachments, even to the Enlightened Dharma Realms
is no longer present in the mind,
one can then gradually approach Primordial Enlightenment.
The false ego-self does not exist.
If one diligently seeks out a Genuine Teacher,
such a one will never fall into perverted views.
Yet if just the mere semblance of “something-separate” arises,
then there never will be consummation with the Enlightened Mind.