Lojong 32: Boddhisattva Vow

I’ve studied through the slogans a dozen times in my life;
these are my musings on the slogan currently, not a formal interpretation.
For that reason they are less about straight Buddhist teachings,
and I think able to be shared with most practitioners of other faiths or no faith
(unless yours doesn’t allow you to read any other tradition.) 

If you have time and the inclination, I published the WHOLE  thang here!


This week when I opened to the next slogan, I was transported back in time.


I was in my twenties, at the Boddhi Tree on Melrose (RIP Boddhi Tree).
I was thumbing through Buddhist and Taoist books as I often did late at night,
And I came upon the Refuge Vow.


Reading it stirred my heart.
I had a feeling I was coming home.
The vow felt so right, as we are all in this craziness together.
No person left behind, eradicating suffering…
I sat and took the vow by myself, to myself.
It took that first time.
Keeping the refuge vow has been confusing at times,
because sometimes it mean doing nothing, so to do no harm.
That has been the hardest.
And frankly, I don’t know why they call it the “Refuge Vow” —
I call it the Boddhisattva Vow.

And it was what made me want to start Tonglen.  The practice of sending and taking wiht the breath has been my main and best practice, even better than sitting zazen.

A decade later I would take refuge formally with Chagdud Rinpoche,
but I know when I really took the Boddhisattva Vow — alone that night at the Boddhi Tree.

Next week I will talk about the other two of the “three basic principles,”
Being that this slogan is such a pithy one for me!

Okina Journal, with pen and ink, and water…
Diamine Ancient Copper ink.

About dkatiepowellart

hollywood baby turned beach gurl turned steel&glass city gurl turned cowgurl turned herb gurl turned green city gurl. . . artist writer photographer. . . cat lover but misses our big dogs, gone to heaven. . . buddhist and interested in the study of spiritual traditions. . . foodie, organic, lover of all things mik, partner in conservation business mpfconservation, consummate blogger, making a dream happen, insomniac who is either reading buddhist teachings or not-so-bloody mysteries or autobio journal thangs early in the morning when i can't sleep
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