If we can turn our minds away from all the blaming and making enemies out of everything all the time, then we can see through our confusion and see what’s really going on.

 

By Daniel Scharpenburg

This means we have to turn our minds, to adjust our understanding of our ordinary confused way of seeing the world.

We want to change our relationship to our confusion, suffering, fears, etc. Rather than trying to make these emotions go away, we want to look deeper to see the reality underneath.

If we can turn our minds away from all the blaming and making enemies out of everything all the time, then we can see through our confusion and see what’s really going on. If we can do that, then we can experience the world in a new context, and can have a broader field of vision. Then, our problems won’t tear us down so much and we’ll be able to overcome a lot of our weaknesses.

As we continue to practice mindfulness and awareness, we move away from the confusion and wildness in our minds. We start to cut through all of the delusions that guide us. This is important because then we start to realize that the truth was there all the time.

This is about carrying everything with us onto the Bodhisattva path. Right now we often see our delusions and weaknesses as burdens. They certainly seem that way. Ultimately our confusion, our frustrations, our fears, are all empty.

I can get frustrated by having to solve a difficult task at work. I can struggle and get confused and have a really hard time. But ultimately that struggle is empty, just like everything else.

Different people have different aspects of the path that they have trouble understanding. Some people struggle with understanding that all things are impermanent. Some people have trouble understanding that what they think of as “ME” is really just a combination of things. Some people struggle with understanding that there sure is a lot of suffering in the world.

This slogan is meant to help those that struggle with something else. This is for the people that understand “Okay, the self is empty,” but still hold onto thinking that their confusion is somehow real and important.

Our confusion is empty and that’s why it can be part of the path.

 

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Daniel Scharpenburg

Daniel lives in Kansas City. He runs Fountain City Zen. Daniel is a Zen Priest and Meditation Teacher. He believes that meditation teachings can be shared with a little more simplicity and humility than we often see. He has been called "A great everyman teacher" and "Really down-to-earth." Daniel is affiliated with the Dharma Winds Zen Sangha, where he received ordination in 2018.

Find out more about Daniel here and connect with him on Facebook
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