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Lions Roar : November 2011
SHAMBHALA SUN NOVEMBER 2011 18 Hiding creates private havens for many of our personal habits. We hunch when we drink our coffee. We are unable to look our spouse in the eye. We fidget as we meditate. We pursue entertain- ment constantly. Socially we are threatened, thus we lack vision. We fear change. We actually feel comforted by the lack of syn- chronicity between our mind and body. Because we are hiding, and therefore sheepish in our mental and physical behavior, it is hard to embody a sense of splendidness. This lack of splendidness becomes a magnet for negativity, attracting like-minded individu- als. “Not hiding anywhere” means we have reduced and lightened our embedded habits and tendencies, which allows us to shine. As spiritual practitioners in this materialistic and prideful age, we might associate shininess with worldliness, and feel that we should abandon anything shiny. However, the Shambhala teach- ings present goodness as our base, and splendidness as the natural state of being. It is neither spiritual nor worldly, but inherent— there to be uncovered. Although it may be easiest to access in the stillness of meditation, the glow of splendidness is present always and everywhere. Connecting to our splendidness is connecting to the ground of goodness. We are not abandoning the world; rather, with splendidness we use the full spectrum of our mind and our emotions. Nor does splendidness mean that every day is sunny. It means that goodness is our ground—as we cry and as we laugh. That is a basic sense of splendidness. The word “sense” indicates contact that has transmuted into feeling. We have learned to bring ourselves into the moment by opening our sense perceptions. Our sense perceptions non- conceptually touch our basic goodness. Touching the primor- dial ember of basic goodness, we feel. When we truly feel, each moment feels fresh: we have touched the beginning of time. We have heard about basic goodness, and after this visceral encoun- ter, we feel that it is true. Such bravery is simply the beauty of recognizing that we are alive. It is the constant interplay between perception and per- ceiver being in utter harmony and synchronicity. There is gaiety and inquisitiveness. Because we are not hiding, we are able to relate to any aspect of our lives. As written in the Tao Te Ching, “In family life, be completely present.” The quality of splendidness is perfectly embodied in the myth- ical snow lion of Tibet, which moves with grace and power, exud- ing bravery. The light sparkling off its luscious coat captures the delight in its eyes. As it prances, dances, and preens, it is frolicking in its own splendidness. Just as this allows the snow lion to leap suddenly and splendidly from one mountain to another, a sense of splendidness allows us to move from one situation to another, not losing any dignity as we traverse life’s landscape, always touching the heart of now. This snow lion level of splendidness brings good fortune and success. Feeling such splendidness is synonymous with feeling our goodness. We are not getting close to goodness; rather, that splen- didness is the visceral sense of goodness itself. We encapsulate it by leading a life that is brilliant, manifesting strong windhorse—life- force energy—in all that we do. Splendidness shows that we have