Who Wants Enlightenment?
Blog Post 12: Who Wants Enlightenment?
"The goal of refuge (in Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha), is to be in touch with all beings and to be awakened so that we can bring about the greatest benefit for all beings."
Most people want to be sincere dharma practitioners, but only if nobody watches over them. If you have a Guru who tells you what to do (and not do), you are actually very fortunate – though you might not realize that. And if all you want to have is good luck, good health, and good family relationships, that's okay. But if you practice correctly and with the right motivation, these things will come naturally to you as a side effect. These days it seems that these side effects – born out of ego – have sadly become our main and only focus.
The reason we cultivate dharma is to defeat our ego-self, not our self-confidence. The ego-self is the self-imputed self-importance that we have created. Nobody gave it to us. Being proud can have two different meanings. One is a sense of pride when you can cherish the skills that you have. The other one is when you have an egoistic pride. The egoistic pride comes from our concepts of the way we think things are. Everybody suffers from this in samsara.
The impediment to spiritual awakening is that drama is replacing dharma. Our mind picks up 'drama' because it takes no effort. It's a karmic affinity thing because the moment you see it, it just clicks. So we must honestly reflect upon what we want in our lives. It is only our ignorance that prevents us from knowing this. With ignorance, we are overcome by our self-made concepts, and we don't want to learn anything new or different from what supports those concepts to protect our ego.
Life coaches have become very popular recently because so many people are looking for someone to admire. But when it comes to a Guru, you need to find a Guru who is not a life coach but an enlightenment coach because even though we are learning dharma, we still don't have the skills or realizations even to guide our current mind.
We take so many of these things for granted. It is challenging to practice dharma in places where you are surrounded by so many people who are only interested in this life's immediate pleasures. If you decide to become awakened, don't continue to give in to your excuses. We may be learning many new things, but that is not awakening.
So who wants enlightenment? Probably not people who are driven by ego and surface values. Perhaps only ones who have undergone deep experience; have used that suffering to strengthen and deepen their practice. They would want enlightenment and awakening.
Dharma Teaching by Singha Rinpoche and Edited by Sandeep Nath
29 Nov 2020