Mahamudra Tantra is a simple and profound practice that leads to peace and awakening. By the rigorous practice of Mahamudra, we are able to leave behind what does not constitute us and lay bare our essential self.
Mahamudra is a collection of teachings found in many Tibetan Buddhist schools including Kagyu, Sakya, and Gelug that contain methods to truly understand the nature of our mind, which leads us to enlightenment. Different schools may offer a slightly different approach to achieve this goal, but no matter what is followed, working to know the true nature of our minds is a way to make our lives truly meaningful.
The essence of Buddha’s teachings is contained in Mahamudra which is a Sanskrit term. ‘Maha’ which means great and ‘Mudra’ conveys seal. Mahamudra thus means ‘great seal.’
The Mahamudra Tantra is defined as the pure spirit of shining light that experiences great bliss and realizes emptiness. The true Mahamudra is necessarily the realization of the ultimate truth.
Mahamudra Tantra is a mind that is made of both bliss and wisdom – it experiences great bliss and directly understands the emptiness.
When we train using meditations from Mahamudra Tantra, we transform our body and mind into the being of Buddha nature. Mahamudra Tantra thus gives our life an unimaginable meaning.
How to Practice Mahamudra Meditation?
Realizing the true nature of our mind is not just by chance or use of willpower. We need help and must trust the essential instructions contained in Mahamudra provided to us by an experienced teacher.
The Mahamudra tradition is a collection of skilful methods to reveal the true nature of the mind. If we can receive these instructions and with sincerity want to work with them, we have a good chance to understand and understand the wisdom of Mahamudra.
Mahamudra teaches us many special techniques to look at our mind and see its true nature. When we look inside ourselves the mind we see is transparent and without blemish. It feels like something is there, but when you look for it, you cannot find anything. Our thoughts and emotions are clear, but we cannot catch them. They melt as soon as we notice them. Even images and sounds that seem to be separate real beings escape us when we look for their true identity. When we recognize the soft, open and spacious quality of all our experiences even for a moment, we attain wisdom.
Sit in your meditation cushion in an upright position. Relax your body but do not droop. Keep the spine straight but not stiff. Take some time to feel or scan your body and be aware of it. Focus on your breath – breather in slowly and breathe out slowly. Shift your attention on the region above your lips and find the feeling of breath. If your mind drifts away to any wandering thought do not fight it but gently bring it back to the breath. After a few minutes, you will feel calmer and your mind will begin to settle down.
Now bring your awareness from your nose and breathing to your eyes. Look ahead but do not focus your eyes on any particular object. Pay full attention to relaxing your mind. Like leaves falling from tree thoughts and emotions will come up. But as each thought appears they will also disappear. Do not judge the thoughts as pleasant or unpleasant. Just regard them as a neutral observer. Observe your mind at work. Reflect on the three marks of existence – impermanence, suffering, and non-self.
Firstly, there’s a sense of concentrating on the space, and yet on the other hand, there’s no special spot to focus on. The gaze is like space itself, broad and spacious.
Whatever pops in your head, whether a thought, an emotion, or a perception, welcome it without any judgement or pre conceived notions. Rest the mind in that very activity, whether you see it as good or bad, happy or unhappy. It is absolutely not required to modify or improve it or look for a better place to rest. Rest the mind just the way it is at that time.
Rest your mind.Release the feeling of hope and fear and just feel yourself. Rest the gaze in the open space in front. Bring our mind into the present moment and relax, simply experiencing the quality of awareness. Then release that too and relax without any emotions and thoughts. Now bring yourself back into the present moment. Relax and experience this empty and luminous mind.
We can after some practice begin to understand the vastness of our mind. The mind has no boundary and stretches endlessly. It has no characteristic, no color, shape, size or form. Mahamudra Tantra will allow us to find deep inside ourselves the luminous nature or our mind i.e. our innate Buddha nature.
Not only is the mind vast, but it is also clear. From this clarity, arises wisdom and with this wisdom, we set ourselves free. Let go of any expectations, hope or fear and looking into the mind will be like staring into a bottomless void. Relax and lower your consciousness slowly into the emptiness of your mind. Experience of this expanded mind is the path to achieving the Buddha nature.