Better the devil you know
Better the devil you know,
than the devil you don’t.
Better to train the devil.
Better to tame the devil.
Best to know that the devil
because the devil is a confidence trick!
Let’s expose this trickery! The devil is the mind – the distracted mind. We need to know this mind, train this mind, tame the mind, know that this mind only exists on a relative level and realise that it plays confidence tricks on us. The devil mind goes by many names: Jinn, Archons, Demons, Fallen angels, Mara…the know-all next door 😉 ! This is all mind activity.
So, better the mind you know, than the mind you don’t!
There is no devil. There has never been a devil, and never will be a devil. However, as sentient beings, if we do not practise, we are part of this so-called demon activity. Demon activity is merely a grasping mind – a mind that grasps at an ‘imagined self identity’.
Being entrapped by an ‘imagined self identity’, we are subject to likes and dislikes: we become defensive and so we attack others…causing harm.
Being entrapped by an ‘imagined self identity’, we are subject to a lack of confidence: we become tricked by our own mind….causing harm/suffering to ourselves, which creates confusion.
So, how do we tame this devil-mind?
There are two aspects to this: personal/inner and others/outer – or we could say, our demons and others’ demons. Incidentally, there are times when we are those outer demons to others! How often have we gossiped and criticised others? How often, when someone is talking from an absolute point of view, do we want to bring the discussion down to the conventional? And the opposite, when someone insists in talking at an inappropriate level that is superior and too scholastic, so causing harm through confusion. These are all Mara activity. This is on an earthly human level: there are also external, formless Mara.
If selfishness is so intense in the form realm (from our point of view, the human realm), then at death, these intensely selfish humans become stuck in the formless realms, becoming mara demons.
This is a difficult subject to get one’s head around, and so we must empathise with how it might feel – being little devils ourselves! 🙂 Compassion is so important: all – all – sentient beings want to be happy, but some do not know how. We certainly know how that feels, don’t we?!
Demon mind also wants to be happy, but is stuck in the realm of negativity. If we do not react to negative forces, and merely offer peace by remaining in empty essence, then it has a sense of relief (whether it is aware of this or not). If we have the desire to “do good”, this is a slight embellishment of the practice, and is thus tainted: others pick this up, and find it annoying. Likewise, if we have a desire to reject negative intent, this will cause a further reaction of feeling unwanted…just as we would. Both of these exaggerations are upsetting: we know all this through our human interactions on a day to day level. Merely resting in the practice is all that is necessary.
This is advanced stuff:
gaining real confidence,
seeing through the illusion
taking the suffering seriously,
but not the delusion.
When we arrive at true confidence,
not taking mind games seriously.
Joy arises…and a sense of humour…
…a light heart!
This is the enlightened activity of
pacifying, magnetising, enriching and destroying.
The devil-mind takes what it needs and moves on.
We have absolutely no expectation.
Now everything is merely a play,
and an expression of love!
The only thing to fear is fear itself.
It’s all in the mind.