Miriam Hitchcock
Miriam Hitchcock

WHEN WE RAISE a thought for someone’s well-being, and entrust that to our foundation, that underlying mind—Juingong—never disappears and is never used up. This is different from helping people through material things. This is the unconditional love that bodhisattvas have for all beings. This mind is the compassion that rises when all beings and myself are one, when the suffering of others is my suffering. This is the power that leads us to the truth.

Raising a thought from the foundation is not the same as generating a thought with your intellect. A thought from the foundation is naturally free of any sense of the notion “I raised a thought.” When you are able to raise this kind of thought, you never lose sight of Juingong, your foundation, for even an instant. Moreover, while letting go and returning to your foundation every kind of suffering and hardship you encounter, you are aware that even letting go is being done by Juingong. When you have this kind of very deep faith, that even the things “you” are doing are actually being done by Juingong, then it can be said that your foundation has come out in front. Thus, the thoughts you give rise to while firmly gripping your foundation will be completely free of concepts like “I did….” However, if you try to raise thoughts from your intellect, you will find your progress blocked.

A thought raised from your foundation is like a middleman: it connects your flesh with your inherent nature. In an instant it can reach anywhere in the universe and the dharma realm. In an instant it can reach the future and the past, and even the realms beyond life. It moves faster than light, so distances of “near” and “far” are meaningless.

People are often careless about the thoughts they give rise to, assuming that once they forget about a thought, that thought is finished. This is not true. Once you give rise to a thought, it keeps functioning, and eventually its consequences return to you. It’s an automatic process.

Entrusting everything to Juingong, that is, letting go and resting, means returning to your true foundation. Because all things, visible and invisible, come from there, if you return to that foundation and raise a thought, then that thought will manifest in the world. A thought at that moment is like pushing a button that starts everything operating automatically. This is because all things begin with thoughts that have arisen from the foundation. When you entrust everything to the foundation, with a single thought you can go a thousand miles. Raise thoughts from the place that does not stand still. If you raise thoughts from a place that stands still, that is, from your fixed concepts and ideas, then you will be caught by outside things and you will be a slave to the material world. On the other hand, if you think that you have to ignore outside things, then you have already raised thoughts from a place that stands still, and so you will become a slave to the nonmaterial world. If you sincerely believe in your eternal friend, your Buddha-nature, you will know where you have to raise thoughts from.

The moment negative thoughts arise, strike back. At that moment, change that thought into something positive. “Of course this is possible! Juingong is taking care of it.” While observing how what you entrusted to your foundation, to Juingong, turns out, you will come to understand the ability of mind, and how profound and mysterious it is.

A single misguided thought can cause people to ruin their bodies and destroy their families. Furthermore, it can also ruin communities, nations, the Earth, and even the whole universe. All beings are one body, one family, one community, one universe. The universe, the Earth, Buddha, and all principles and laws that govern this world are contained within our minds. We have to raise thoughts such that all of the lives within our body function together harmoniously as one. Then the unenlightened lives within our bodies become bodhisattvas, and our bodies become healthy.

Money coming or going, harmony, wisdom, and health can all turn upon a single thought. With a single thought, poverty can be overcome; with a single thought, disease can be cured; with a single thought, you can embrace and help others. Because mind is infinite, it can embrace the universe and still have room left over. Thus, if you understand the truth of nonduality, you can completely embrace everything. If you raise one thought that is calm, noble, and humble, and do so without any trace of like or dislike, or of “I,” then that thought begins to manifest in the world and becomes medicine for all suffering. All energy will follow and work together with this kind of thought.

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