Transcendental Wisdom: The Path to Spiritual Heroism – Part 4

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Read parts 1, 2, and 3 here.

There are two ways to be a Bodhisattva, that is, a being with the intention of benefiting all beings.

You can be:

  1. An aspiring bodhisattva or,
  2. A realized bodhisattva.

The aspiring Bodhisattva is where we all start. Our Dharma practice for the benefit of all beings is imperfect. Our generosity doesn’t let go entirely. Our discipline is faulty, and our patience is sometimes present and, other times, isn’t. Although our intentions are noble, our efforts could be more effective. We unnecessarily waste energy trying to help others, and our help is often annoying. Our meditation practice feels forced, and our conceptual wisdom hasn’t been verified in experience.

The realized Bodhisattva, on the other hand, is the one who has already verified the truth of Dharma in his experience and, therefore, can help others with skill and without effort.

This is not to say that the Bodhisattva has perfected his Dharma practice. On the contrary, after realizing the truth of the Buddha’s teaching, he still has a long way to go. He has to purify his body, speech, and mind of erroneous cognitions. However, because he already understands how the Dharma works, he can begin to hone his virtues more precisely. From that moment on, his wisdom changes from mundane to extraordinary also called Prajñā.

The road to Prajñā

Jñā means to know. Pra is a prefix that, in this case, implies something in front, a main thing, the most distinguished, the best. So in that sense, prajñā is the best knowledge.

Is it easy to achieve Prajñā? No. It’s pretty hard. Although we all have the potential, for many, it is impossible because it requires a lot of study, analysis, and thousands of hours of meditation. But just because it’s hard is no reason not to try. On the contrary, we should all aspire to it. Why? There are many reasons.

When verifying Prajñā:

  • The end of all our harmful habits begins.
  • You manifest spiritual virtues such as patience, humility, discipline, compassion, and honesty.
  • It allows you to help people who are suffering.
  • You enter the path that leads to Buddhahood.

Even if you don’t realize this wisdom, aspiring for it and submitting to the practice makes you a better person.

Once your wisdom is no longer human, you can aspire to Prajñāpāramitā: Transcendental Wisdom.

And what is Prajñāpāramitā?

As I mentioned, Prajñā means extraordinary wisdom, insight, or comprehension. Pāramitā means perfection, although it also means to cross, to reach the other side, that is, to transcend.

Prajñāpāramitā, then is the Perfection of Wisdom or Transcendental Wisdom. Prajñāpāramitā is the main virtue of a high-level Bodhisattva. It is what allows you to act in the most heroic way possible.

This perfect wisdom enables the Bodhisattva to be naturally generous and without attachment. As a result, he becomes surprisingly disciplined and doesn’t lose his temper, even in the face of the sickest beings. The Prajñāpāramitā is the prime mover behind his passionate dedication to the common good. Thanks to it, he can live 24 hours a day in a deep, pure, and clear contemplative state.

It sounds impossible. However, according to the Buddha, we are the species most likely to attain this wisdom out of the Six Realms. According to my first teacher, when you achieve Prajñāpāramitā, the rest of the virtues flourish naturally.

If you want to achieve the Prajñāpāramitā, you have to be a little crazy.

You have to be obsessed. You have to have a fire inside and stubborn perseverance that pushes you to continue practicing, studying, and refining the spiritual qualities of your mind.

You have to read a lot. You have to look for a teacher who understands the Prajñāpāramitā deeply, who has meditated for years, and who you can ask questions until you know the correct meaning of Prajñā. You must read about Buddhist meditation and practice for many hours until you see every aspect of the mind.

Specifically, you have to:

  • Conceptually understand Right View according to Buddhism.
  • Receive instruction on how to meditate according to the Buddha.
  • Sit to practice meditation with Right View and proper instruction to achieve a non-conceptual understanding of Right View.
  • Conceptually understand emptiness according to Mahayana Buddhism.
  • Sit to meditate to understand Emptiness in a non-conceptual way.
  • Cultivate other virtues such as generosity, discipline, patience, humility, vigor, loving-kindness, compassion, empathy, honesty, determination, and equanimity.

The easy part is acquiring knowledge and teachings. But, as is often the case, the hard part is putting the learning into practice.

May you aspire to the realization of Prajñāpāramitā. May you realize it so that you exercise the urgently needed Spiritual Heroism of a Bodhisattva and thus achieve Buddhahood for the benefit of all beings.

This is the last post of the series on The Path to Spiritual Heroism. Please share this with others who are interested.

If you are interested in this path, in 2023, I will give three courses:

  • TRVE DHARMA: An introduction to Cosmic Law.
  • Active Dharma Practice Vol 1: Buddhist training for lay practitioners seeking to purify body and mind of harmful habits. In this training, we mainly focus on developing the Right Perspective according to the Eightfold Path taught by the Buddha.
  • Active Dharma Practice Vol 2: In this training, we continue what was seen in ADP vol 1, but focusing mainly on Mahayana Buddhism, the path of the Bodhisattva, Emptiness, and Prajñāpāramitā. Pre-requisites for this course: TRVE DHARMA and Active Dharma Practice Vol. 1.

More details coming soon.

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