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Lions Roar : July 2011
SHAMBHALA SUN JULY 2011 18 heading into life. Being hesitant—standing still or looking back- ward instead of forward—creates an immediate ripple effect. Life buckles behind us and builds up pressure, blasting us forward. We are then coerced into dealing with issues at an accelerated rate, beyond what is comfortable or convenient. Such hesitancy, which is a form of cowardice, stems from doubt in relation to our basic goodness. The bravery of the Great Eastern Sun indicates that the warrior has abruptly come to this conclusion: life is a forward-moving endeavor. Closing our eyes to this fact is like shutting them to oncoming traffic: we are simply afraid to deal with life’s imme- diacy and brilliance. The reason we maintain a regular medita- tion practice is to open our eyes and have forward vision. Once we have confidence in the basic nature of things, we are more immediate in our life. Having the vision that engages life with forwardness does not mean we swallow virtue and nonvirtue indiscriminately. If we engage in nonvirtue because we think engaging in life with forward vision means doing what is right in front of us, that is incorrect. Engaging in nonvirtue is putting on the brakes and grinding our gears into reverse. Great Eastern Sun vision is based on engaging in virtue. We understand that virtue is synonymous with the word forward. Forward is East; East is richness; richness is virtue. The words Great, Eastern, and Sun hold all the golden virtues. Virtue helps us move forward, whether it manifests outwardly as generosity, or inwardly as patience. In the tremendous heat of the sun, non- virtue withers and melts. The path of the warrior is paved with virtue, and what allows us to follow it is the spontaneous insight of the Great Eastern Sun. This “brings about the understanding of what should be avoided and cultivated,” said my father, Chögyam Trungpa, who introduced these teachings to the West, “from how to brew tea to how to preside over a nation.” In this way our mind is both pragmatic and visionary. Thus the Great Eastern Sun shines and influences both the emotional and intellectual workings of the mind. Intellectually we engage in East. Emotionally we engage in Sun. Thus we be- come Great. Ultimately this visionary principle gives us tremen- dous energy—a battery that does not need recharging. This vision occurs for three reasons. First, we are confident and free from aggression and the self- Life is perpetual motion. We can’t just turn on the slow-motion feature, or push the “save” button and deal with it later.