Swampland to Heartfield
Once one has lived and tasted deeply of life’s bitterness it seems virtually inconceivable that this imperfect body in all its threatenedness could ever be revealed to be the body of the Buddha . . . and the world with all its painful ordeals and mortal threats could ever be revealed as a shining heartfield.
And yet this is the evidence – not just of the realizers – but of our very own intuition.
Don’t we intuit that it should be possible to come to a place of peace and love and serenity? Don’t we deep down dream of ‘arriving’ in such a place?
Perhaps it is not a ‘place’ . . . a Shangri-la to be attained . . . a Heaven . . . a Buddha’s Western Paradise . . .
Perhaps it is satchitananda . . . perhaps it is our own true nature projected forward as a vision in space/time . . . a mirage . . .
If so it is a lot closer than the future . . . If so it is realizable right now, even in this place of mortal threat.
Perhaps this is what is meant when the Buddhists say ‘Nirvana is Samsara’ . . .
And when Jesus says, ‘The Kingdom of Heaven lies spread out on the earth, and men do not see it’.
Let’s face it, this realm in which we live and breathe can truly be a soul-sucking swamp . . . and at times it can also be like a heartfield.
And if it can show us both these faces . . . what then is it really?
If we are continually moving through these ‘realms’, what is it altogether?
This is the work of sadhana, the work of spiritual realization, to awaken to what this place is . . .
And then, once we recognize the place, we can convert it from a swampland to a heartfield. . .
‘If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.‘ – Henry David Thoreau