We Are All Buddhas
We are all Buddhas; we are all blessed with deep inner wisdom and
compassion. Our personal meditation practice enables us to access our own
inherent goodness, peace and joy. This truth is the wonderful realization
we derive from regular meditation practice.
We Are All Buddhas: The Story
It had been announced by the head monk that the Buddha would be
arriving at the monastery this particular day to deliver a special message on
the topic of enlightenment. Like rivulets of water into a thirsty garden,
devotees from far and wide began streaming into the temple grounds from
It was early morning when the air was still cool that they first began to
arrive, and by noon as the sun burned off that morning's chill, the
monastery's public grounds had become filled with hundreds of truth-
seeking pilgrims. From a distance, they appeared like a vast sea of flowing
orange coloured-robes, all waiting for the enlightened one to surface. The
large group of monks and truth-seekers seemed indistinguishable from one
another. Men and women alike seated with excited intention yet in
dedicated stillness, with hearts open and heads all slightly bowed in
Later that afternoon, all who desired to attend seemed to be there. The
tranquil silence and peace that pervaded from the devotees’ meditation
covered the grounds like a warm blanket as their meditation grew deeper
and the day progressed into early evening. Their bodies, like vehicles of
peace, emanated throughout the surrounding world in a state of reflection,
pure tranquility and repose.
The monks had been seated in the silence of their meditation all day and
into the evening without interruption. It was then, in the midst of this
ocean of stillness, that it suddenly occurred.
A young indiscreet monk sitting in the centre of this calm quiet pool of
humanity abruptly arose as if he were a wave stirred up from the the
oceans depths, and with appreciative joy and the sincerest of intentions,
announced to all in attendance, “I HAVE ARRIVED!”
Divine Truth Is In Our Hearts
We are all Buddhas; we all carry the internal spark of divine truth in our
hearts that is just waiting to be realized. While in our meditation practice,
we are abiding in stillness, in silence, waiting to kindle the flames of our
own enlightenment. We are all just like that monk in our story, a wave
upon the sea of humanity, waiting to be realized.
Regular meditation practice cultivates our inner landscape so that our
personal growth and transformation will naturally occur. That is what our
little story and our practice is all about. Each and every day we use our
practice to fulfill our fullest spiritual potential. In this way we are all
Buddhas, always awakening, always growing, always realizing our spiritual
This is what the Buddha himself taught; that his own enlightenment would
simply be an example for what we ourselves might attain: our own
awakened insight and consciousness.
Ego vs. Sense Of Self
Spiritual practice sometimes seems paradoxical. In one sense we seek to
cultivate an egoless - selfless state of being, while at the same time, we seek
to realize our truest sense of self and authentic state of being. Through
consistent meditative practice, we eventually realize that we need to fully
understand both sides of this paradox in order to fully realize our own
Cleaning Up Our Act
After we begin meditating there comes a point, or dare I say there should
come a point, where we realize the need to do what the spiritual teacher
Ram Dass describes as “cleaning up our act”. As we meditate, possibly
engaging in a serious yoga practice, an analytic meditation, a spiritual
study, or in any of the other spiritual arts, we begin to seek out the fire of
spiritual purification in our life. That’s when it gets very interesting for us
because we begin to witness our own transformation.
We want our lives to change and transform and we begin looking for ways
to make that happen. That is when you begin to take a more serious look at
the roles you play in your incarnation. You may re-examine your
responsibilities to your partner, parents, children, country, religion,
friends, yourself – and begin to work on ways of bringing them into
harmony with your deeper being, your more authentic sense of self.
The development of the self. The discovery of the true self. The realization
of the Buddha within. This is the discovery of what is already present
within each one of us; all the positive qualities of character that we work so
hard to cultivate in our spiritual life.
Care Of The Body / Care Of The Soul
Caring for your soul or spirit is caring for your body as well. Part of your
relationship with yourself is taking responsibility for the care of your body
and doing the things that promote good health.
Many of the great spiritual traditions teach us that the body is the temple
of the spirit. It is the vehicle for you to exist in this incarnation and become
fully awakened, realized, and at one with God. By the very nature of your
practice you should begin to have the desire to “honor” your body and your
life. Thus caring for the body is, in its essence, caring for the soul.
From personal experience, I must say that as a young man failing to realize
the significance of the preciousness of this body, I abused it. Looking back,
I can clearly see that I paid a very high price for that abuse in many ways.
It was spiritual practice that brought me back to good health physically,
emotionally and spiritually. Of all the spiritual practices I’ve engaged in
throughout the years, it has been meditation in all its various forms that
has had the deepest, most long lasting transformative impact on my life.
Listening To Your Body And Emotions
I’ve realized that as you quiet your mind, you begin to see clearly all the
various components of who you are and how you live your life. You begin to
realize which aspects of yourself are out of harmony and lacking balance.
For example, through meditation practice, you may at times begin to feel
that your body is out of sync, that you are experiencing a physical
imbalance and it is draining your energy in some way. You may feel that
your muscles need strengthening or relaxing in a specific area of your body.
You may begin to focus in on the areas in your body where you store stress
and where you find peace.
Meditation is the practice of honing in on yourself, paying attention to all
the components of what makes you - you. It enables you to bring balance to
your emotional and spiritual energy and connect you with the path to the
Yoga asana, when practiced correctly, can do the same thing. The ancient
Hindus believed that an asana was a way of talking to God, that the human
body is a manifestation of God and must be honoured as such. Yoga asana,
in its inception was designed to make that connection, to which meditation
and the focus on the breath were central. There is an excellent
documentary called Breath Of The Gods that talks about this.
Meditation is a continuous reminder that your body is the temple of your
spirit. Over time, you realize the need to care for it, work with it. In doing
so, you realign yourself with your ground of being and find your own inner
sense of balance. Through regular practice you yourself can actually
balance your own energy, and recover good health and happiness.
According to the Buddha, this is how we “become the path”. Through
meditation, you examine all the areas of your life and you bring them into
harmony with your ground of being.
The Buddha tells us “You cannot travel on the path until you become the
path - Every human being is the author of their own health or disease - No
one saves us but ourselves. No one can - and no one may. We ourselves
must walk the path”.
We - each one of us - We are all Buddhas.