Luminous Mind Compilation | From the Buddha & the Dalai Lama
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AN 1.31-40 PTS: A i 5
Adanta Suttas: Untamed (excerpt) | The Buddha
31. I know not of any other single thing so intractable as the untamed mind. The untamed mind is indeed a thing untractable.
32. I know not of any other thing so tractable as the tamed mind. The tamed mind is indeed a thing tractable.
33. I know not of any other single thing so conducive to great loss as the untamed mind. The untamed mind indeed conduces to great loss.
34. I know not of any other single thing so conducive to great profit as the tamed mind. The tamed mind indeed conduces to great profit.
39. I know not of any other single thing that brings such woe as the mind that is untamed, uncontrolled, unguarded and unrestrained. Such a mind indeed brings great woe.
40. I know not of any other single thing that brings such bliss as the mind that is tamed, controlled, guarded and restrained. Such a mind indeed brings great bliss.”
AN 1.49-52 PTS: A i 10
Pabhassara Sutta: Luminous | The Buddha
Translation: Thanissaro Bhikkhu
“Luminous is the mind!
When it is clouded by incoming defilements,
the ordinary person doesn’t discern this
as it actually is— present.
That is why I tell you
— for the ordinary person,
there is no development of the luminouis mind.”
“Luminous is the mind!
When it is cleared from incoming defilements,
the well-instructed contemplative person discerns this as it actually is present.
That is why I tell you
— for the well-instructed comtemplative person.
there is development of the luminous mind.”
Mind precedes all mental states. Mind is their chief; they are all mind-wrought. If with an impure mind a person speaks or acts suffering follows him like the wheel that follows the foot of the ox. (Verse 1)
-Translator: Acharya Buddharakkhita
Phenomena are preceded by the heart, ruled by the heart, made of the heart. If you speak or act with a corrupted heart, then suffering follows you — as the wheel of the cart, the track of the ox that pulls it.
-Translator: Thanissaro Bhikkhu
AN 3.100 (xi-xv) PTS: A i 255
Nimitta Sutta: Themes | The Buddha
One intent on luminous mind should attend periodically to three themes:
1. One should attend periodically to the theme of concentration;
2. One should attend periodically to the theme of uplifted energy;
3. One should attend periodically to the theme of equanimity.
If one intent on heightened mind were to attend solely to the theme of concentration, it is possible that his mind would tend to laziness.
If he were to attend solely to the theme of uplifted energy, it is possible that his mind would tend to restlessness.
If he were to attend solely to the theme of equanimity, it is possible that his mind would not be rightly concentrated for the ending of the mental agitations.
But when he attends periodically to the theme of concentration, attends periodically to the theme of uplifted energy, attends periodically to the theme of equanimity, his mind is pliant, malleable, luminous, & not brittle. It is rightly centered for the stopping of the fermentations.
Luminosity of the Mind
– HH Dalai Lama
In relation to the nature of mind, what is luminosity? In this respect it might be interesting to reflect on a passage which one finds in certain texts which says that ‘between the arisal of different instances of conceptual thought, the clear light nature of mind arises uninterruptedly’.
Say you look at an object which doesn’t have bright colours but is rather subdued in colour and not very attractive. And you look at it for a while. Then, while looking at this object, you make the determination: ‘I shall retain my concentration in order to focus my attention upon my own perception, upon my own experience. And I shall not allow myself to be distracted by other objects, external or internal.’ With such mindfulness you will be able to recognize the very moment your mind is distracted. For example, you hear a beautiful tune and you are distracted by it, but you immediately realise you are distracted, reinforce your mindfulness, and withdraw from it. Similarly, if you recollect past events, you will immediately realise that you have become distracted. Or if you have preconceptions of the future, you will also be able to identify that your mind has become distracted.
So, normally, it is these types of thoughts which come into being at any given moment and which obscure the essential nature of our minds. When this technique of mindfulness is utilised, therefore, of maintaining attention on the perception of the object in front of us, as and when a distraction arises, we are able to identify it and to withdraw from such distractions. Thus, eventually all these conceptual events, the cognitive processes that obscure the natural state of the mind, will be cleared away. And the result will be a very stable and lucid state of mind.
The mind is an affirmative phenomenon, but on the ordinary level it is obscured by concepts, different states of thinking and preconceptions, and so on. In order to recognize the essential nature of the mind, therefore, we have to peel off these different layers and clear away these obscurations. Then we shall see the true face of our own minds.
If you undertake such practices, such experiments, when you say ‘consciousness’, it will not be a mere word. You will be able to understand what it is. Consciousness is a phenomenon that is nonobstructive; it is nonphysical and has the quality of luminosity. It is analogous to a crystal. If a crystal is placed on a coloured surface, the real clarity of that crystal will not be seen. If it is removed from anything coloured, however, then its real form will be seen.
The luminosity of the mind, the nature of clarity of the mind, is something that I cannot simply explain in words to you. But if you undertake this kind of experiment on your own, you will begin to understand,’ Ah, that’s the luminosity of the mind!’