Compassion as Conduct
Compassion –conduct and empathy with others – is our teacher.
Understanding and recognising our true nature is straightforward: we have awareness and that awareness is pure, at its most refined. This is simple and logical. Our only problems in life come from our personal addictions and obsessions, which obscure pure awareness. This is the first half of the equation.
Once we recognise pure awareness (which is normally a moment’s glimpse), it is gradually sustained through the practice of recognition. This is the vital second half of the equation – the sustaining of the recognition – and this is where compassion manifests. It is also where the work takes place.
As with the two ignorances (mistaking our true nature for a mental image of ourselves and then maintaining that image), so too with the two wisdoms of recognising our true nature and sustaining that recognition (sustaining in the sense of allowing it to be, merely recognising, not a “doing activity”).
Compassion is our conduct. Conduct is the continuity, in daily life, of our recognition of our true nature in meditation. Regardless of the situation in which we find ourselves, we can either leave a stain, or liberate through clarity.
Enlightened conduct, or compassion, has four activities which have the effect of taking a situation apart, so revealing its essence:
pacifying (to calm)
magnetising (to welcome)
enriching (to clarify)
destroying (to cut through)
These activities – or enlightened qualities – respond to ego’s games of addictions and obsessions (our clinging concepts), which obscure our, and others’ true nature. This obscuration is why we are always in conflict instead of meeting minds.
Engagement with the four enlightened qualities is the inner teacher, and arises from resting in empty essence. It only exists, through our empathy, for the benefit of others, and thus we sustain pure awareness. Through compassionate conduct we exhaust all karma (the imprints in the mind which are the effects of our previous reactions).
Really be nice!
All methods and practices are merely a reminder of the recognition of pure awareness.