|Photo Credit: Mandala Madness|
He looked like something out of a Santa Claus play or some magical mystery novel.
He had pure white hair and a long grey beard that seemed to extend into the four directions like tiny antennas. He wore an interesting array of clothing that often consisted of bloomers or a lungi, Birkenstock s, long fur lined capes that reached all the way to His ankles, or, when duty called, red robes draped in an extensive white and red hand woven silk shawl.
Chadral Rinpoche, despite being a very venerable Lama, has absolutely no airs whatsoever about Him. He lives, breathes and moves in the ever fresh atmosphere of the present moment. And yes, i use the present tense because He is still alive and well and now crossed the venerable age of 100.
For me, and many others who have had the good fortune to meet Him, He is the living example, par excellence, of a vital awareness that embraces everything, whatever it may be, in a completely spontaneous and un-contrived way.
During the years when I was privileged to live near Him, it never occurred to me to ask Him for formal teachings. I simply felt that every day and moment in His presence was in itself the highest possible teaching.
That ‘teaching’ always points back to the ‘self;’ to the ever present mystery of our ‘awareness,’ of ‘who and what we REALLY are.’
During the years when i could stay nearby, whatever happened in the world around Him, He responded without hesitation and often with great humor and joy from the place of pure ‘now ness.’ Seeing the natural flow of 'awareness' in action one could never for a moment take anything for granted and yet life always appeared to unfold in a completely appropriate way.
We tend to put ‘ourselves’ at the helm of our ship and imagine that we are steering it to some 'place' and that ‘someone’ who we think is 'ourselves' is doing the steering…
If we deeply and sincerely investigate the ‘reality’ of our everyday assumptions about ourselves and our lives, sooner or later we are bound to stumble across the supreme mystery of 'no self.'.
The question that deeply concerns us all is Who and what we really are, not what we ‘think’ we are.
Isn't it extraordinary how we pass through our days, weeks and lives without ever giving even a second thought to the very thing that makes absolutely EVERYTHING possible?
We do not exist because the world exists. The world exists within us, within the unfathomable mystery of our ‘Awareness.’
The only thing that we can ever really, truly ‘know’ is that we exist. Not only do we ‘exist’ but the very fact of our ‘existence’ points towards the ultimate, impenetrable mystery.
In every moment of every day we live, breath and move in this world within the atmosphere of our awareness and every living being; human and otherwise is imbued with ‘that.’
If our lives have become a round of meaningless activities, endless distractions, pointless discussions and fruitless labors, its time to look up and look within.
Everything that we need for happiness, joy and peace is already present within us. It needs only to be recognized.
Joy is a special wisdom which points ceaselessly to the fact that we are Ever Here Now...