Sometimes, The Words Run Out
Some feelings or experiences cannot be expressed in words
There is a longing within us all for clarity, unity and love. We can either sit in silence and rest in these qualities, or use sound – or rather, mantra, where there is silence within the sound.
There are two approaches to the method of using sound. One is where we invoke an outside source that we regard as being more powerful than us, and the other is to invoke our own inner essence. Within those two methods, there are another two: one is audible speech and other is repetition in the mind. Both of these methods start out with a feeling of something ‘other’, which reduces to being what we seek.
The problem with devotion arises when we see others displaying their devotion, and thinking we should be like them. Devotion is a private, individual process so don’t be put off.
Traditionally, we call on the lama/teacher/guru from afar; this could be a name, a lineage, or a deity-attitribute. Mantras are usually sounded in Sanskrit as they carry ancient, enlightened qualities; all mantras have a meaning, but getting the gist – the essence, the substance – is enough. This process could said to be psychological, but is nonetheless beneficial, depending on how a person approaches it.
To repeat, this is not merely mechanical chanting to an outer source (although for some, this approach is satisfying enough) This is a short cut to non-duality.
We call for ‘blessings’ – “Teacher bless me. Lama bless me. Guru bless me.” It is heard because essence hears it. We are renouncing our own limited, intellectual understanding and have entered longing, ecstasy, delight, joyousness, bliss. This is the opposite to misery! We are not asking for something from someone else: devotion is a matter of opening up to our own innate qualities.
It is rapture, in the sense of expressions of intense inspiration.
This is what Guru Yoga is all about. This is what Tantra/Vajrayana is all about. It’s what Tibetan Buddhism is all about. In fact, isn’t it also what theism is all about? … “God bless me.”
It’s nice when the words run out.
That perfect silence.
It may be just for a moment,
and during that moment,
we no longer have to hold it all together.
We can let go … totally.