A preview of the upcoming audio/video teaching series on the Shurangama Sutra.
When obscured by the Five Aggregates, the sky of the essence of nirvana is like that of a darkened horizon on a foggy night. When the first three aggregates terminate, it is daybreak but light is not yet dawn. Once the volition aggregate ceases, only one aggregate remains submerged. The enlightenment of daylight is on the rise. With the six senses quieted, that which listens and that which is heard are no more, sense data and sense faculties merge into one luminous radiance.
The primary objectives for sharing these strange and fascinating possible meditation states are twofold. One, so that more people know about the experiences in deepening practice. Two, so that more people know not to be led astray by their experiences as their practice deepens.
When your feeling aggregate disintegrates, your mind is freed from its container, like a bird freed from a cage. When you are working on thought aggregate, it is as if you talking in your sleep; while you aren’t fully cognizant, your thoughts have become words verbalized so that others hear them.
To reach enlightenment, your meditation practice will, and must, lead you down a path where you wrestle with physicality, feeling, thought, volition, and consciousness. Only when you have become increasingly unattached to each of these aggregates do you reach the ultimate source of courage, compassion, and wisdom.
Along your path of practice, you will encounter some interesting physical, mental, and spiritual phenomena. In meditation, you may feel parts of your body shake uncontrollably, you may sense heat circulate through or grow in parts of you, you may have visions, you may hear voices, you may be one with the world. Know that even more meditation experiences await you as you deepen your regular practice. You must also remember that these states of being are transitory signs pointing to an intensive and advancing practice, not ultimate enlightenment. Hence for each experience the same refrain about being relentless with continued awareness, avoiding the derailing belief that you are now awakened, a sage. Here is List I of 10 states associated with the form aggregate among the 50 for the 5 aggregates.
Listening by contemplating on the source of the ear organ is the recommended practice for this era because only sound can be heard through walls and all around. You can practice all hours of the day; even while you’re asleep or deep in a dream, you can hear sounds, including the sound of silence. The sound of silence is a sound with a source in you who hear. You first notice sounds in movement and stillness, then you realize that the object of sound neither comes into being nor ceases. Instead of listening to the wisdom of others, why not listen to that which listens? Contemplate: who is it that listens? Listen until even listening ceases.