Verse 8 of Eight Verses for Training the Mind

Having a Greater Vision . . . 

May I keep all of these practices undefiled by stains of the eight worldly concerns (gain/loss, pleasure/pain, praise/blame, fame/dishonor), and by recognizing the emptiness and illusory nature of all existing things, may I be liberated from the bondage of attachment and mistaken views of reality.  

It is essential that our spiritual practice not be defiled or stained by the eight worldly concerns.  

For example, engaging in these practices hoping to be recognized or praised as an excellent dharma practitioner is not the right motivation. Nor should we practice with expectations of gaining something special or pleasurable for ourselves.  

Our motivation for practice must not become polluted or obscured by worldly concerns and attachment.  

The right motivation is to act exclusively and compassionately for the benefit of other beings.  

Our mind training practice must also be unified with our direct perception of ultimate truth—emptiness. As we gain realization of ultimate truth, we understand the empty, illusory, and impermanent nature of all existing things.  

With this realization, grasping or clinging to external appearances, or being deceived by them, diminishes, and we gain liberation from the bondage of attachment and mistaken views of reality. 

 

Source: Used with permission from Neil Cohen at Naljor Prison Dharma Service, PO Box 1177, Mount Shasta CA 96067.

Photo Credit: Intellimon Ltd.