Posted by: Michael Rickicki | 03/30/2018


My mind has been lurching towards negativity in the past few weeks so, on the advice of many great ajahns, I’m trying to right the ship by brightening the mind. The traditional approach of cultivating metta has been a great help but contemplation of celestial Bodhisattas has given me yet another avenue to explore.

I have always been attracted to the six syllable mantra of Avalokiteshvara but could never quite settle upon a perception that would help to cultivate compassion. Luckily, through a kind of involuntary persistence and the teaching of Ajahn Achalo, I have now settled into using the mantra as an aide to devanussati. Ajahn had said that he has spoken with other mahatheras with the divine eye who have personally spoken with Avalokiteshvara. This shouldn’t change the exercise of devanussati but it does for me: I can both reflect on the highly developed compassion and wisdom of such a being and simultaneously try to make a connection and call for help in overcoming my defilements. In a strange way, I now feel less alone and more determined.

May we all practice to free ourselves from the defilements and become less of a burden upon beings.

Om mani padme hum.

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