Pure Qualities of the Wisdom Dakini
Yesterday Jetsunma Ahkön Lhamo gave a superb teaching (or tweeching, if you prefer) on Twitter about how to learn and practice forgiveness. You can read it for yourself on her blog, Tibetan Buddhist Altar. This teaching, particularly in view of the tremendous attacks she has been under for the last several years, is particularly profound and demonstrates the pure qualities of an enlightened mind that refuses to bow to threats and attacks of any sort and still has enough compassion to forgive the attacker or the cyberstalker. As she says in her teaching, to forgive is not easy and takes true courage. To attack someone behind the curtain of anonymity offered by the internet, on the other hand, takes no courage whatsoever and is indeed the very essence of cowardice. It is a symptom of a dysfunctional mind rather than an act of bravery.
To live compassion, one has to understand the nature of that which we call “enemy”. To do that is in itself an act of compassion because you are putting yourself in the shoes of another, trying to understand what makes him or her tick. She teaches that to react to their attacks in kind would be neither compassionate nor useful. Rather, it would just keep the whole thing going. She goes on to say that eventually rage will take over completely and you will become obsessed with it. You will soon go totally out of control. Thus it is much wiser to practice compassion, for your own benefit and that of the attacker.
It is the function of a dakini to cut through the obstacles that prevent us from realizing our own true nature, our Buddhanature. Her only purpose in life is to guide sentient beings to realization so that their suffering is brought to an end forever. This teaching by Jetsunma is a perfect example of this purpose. She teaches us how to turn away from our habitual tendency to protect ourselves by fighting back when attacked and opens our minds to a very different alternative, love.
The dakini is associated with space, as is reflected in the Tibetan word for dakini, khandro, which literally means sky (or space) walker. This concept of space is symbolic of the ability to give birth or to actualize the full range of potential, the space of becoming where the four enlightened activities of pacifying, enriching, magnetizing and destroying can be fully actualized. Jetsunma embodies these qualities in her life and teaching and empowers us to actualize them as well through teachings such as this one on forgiveness.
As sentient beings who wander lost in samsara, our only way to find the way out of suffering, the end to samsara, is through a guide such as Jetsunma, one who can teach us the way to change our way of relating to the world and to ourselves. When one can tame the enemy within, then no external enemy will ever threaten us.
We offer our thanks to Jetsunma for her kindness in offering this teaching to all who wish to partake of it.