It seems many of us experienced consternation with last Thursday's post, "Bring It Forth." I felt it the night before and many of you felt it upon reading the revised post. So I decided to re-create the deleted post, as best as memory and talent would permit, and offer it today.
Within each of us exists a vast and unceasing world of arising and disappearing.
Impulses, thoughts, sensations, and feelings come and go like phantoms. Each arising gives life a certain charge, while each disappearing creates a certain loss.
We rarely attain awareness of these phantoms but we react immediately to their arising and disappearing. The Buddha called these reactions anger, desire and delusion, and our attachment to them shapes our world.
When we settle onto a meditation cushion, however, we can discover these phantoms of mind and see how they control our life.
And, as this process of discovery continues, we can take responsibility for our life for the first time.
Responsibility means bringing forth these phantoms into the world, thus saving not only ourselves but also all beings from the suffering of anger, desire and delusion. This "bringing forth" may simply mean bringing the phenomena into awareness, or it can mean giving voice to our own poisons in a way that dispels their energy.
When we fail to bring forth our inner life, we corrode and corrupt our own well-being, and thus destroy not only ourselves but all beings. Alcoholics Anonymous expresses this truth in the phrase, "You're only as sick as your secrets."
This reality has always been available to those who study the self. In the Gospel of Thomas, Jesus said:
If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you.