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bravery of the Great Eastern Sun indicates that the warrior has
abruptly come to this conclusion: life is a forward-moving endeavor.
Closing our eyes to this fact is like shutting them to oncoming traffic:
we are simply afraid to deal with life’s immediacy and brilliance. The
reason we maintain a regular meditation practice is to open our eyes and
have forward vision. Once we have confidence in the basic nature of
things, we are more immediate in our life.
the vision that engages life with forwardness does not mean we swallow
virtue and nonvirtue indiscriminately. If we engage in nonvirtue because
we think engaging in life with forward vision means doing what is right
in front of us, that is incorrect. Engaging in nonvirtue is putting on
the brakes and grinding our gears into reverse. Great Eastern Sun vision
is based on engaging in virtue. We understand that virtue is synonymous
with the word forward.
is East; East is richness; richness is virtue. The words Great,
Eastern, and Sun hold all the golden virtues. Virtue helps us move
forward, whether it manifests outwardly as generosity, or inwardly as
patience. In the tremendous heat of the sun, nonvirtue withers and
path of the warrior is paved with virtue, and what allows us to follow
it is the spontaneous insight of the Great Eastern Sun. This “brings
about the understanding of what should be avoided and cultivated,” said
my father, Chögyam Trungpa, who introduced these teachings to the West,
“from how to brew tea to how to preside over a nation.” In this way our
mind is both pragmatic and visionary.
the Great Eastern Sun shines and influences both the emotional and
intellectual workings of the mind. Intellectually we engage in East.
Emotionally we engage in Sun. Thus we become Great. Ultimately this
visionary principle gives us tremendous energy—a battery that does not
This vision occurs for three reasons.
we are confident and free from aggression and the self-centered
struggle. That allows us to have spontaneous insight, which demonstrates
itself as bravery in the form of gentle and unwavering steadiness. We
become like a tiger, tantalized by every blade of grass, and by the
dewdrop on each blade. Because we are not preoccupied with our
self-centered doubts, life feels strong and full of possibility.
engaging in life as a visionary eradicates confusion. We are no longer
imprisoned by petty mind and cowardice. Because we are not hiding behind
the veils of vacillation, we are not confined by narrow vision.
Therefore we know clearly where we are: in the lineage of warriorship.
the combination of steadiness, fortitude, and gentleness; the absence
of petty mind; and the knowledge of what to cultivate and what to
discard, allow us to unite the world of heaven, the world of earth, and
the world of humanity. From resting in the primordial space of basic
goodness to relating to our domestic world, our intention and activity
are united and synchronized. This synchronicity increases our confidence
notion of uniting heaven, earth, and humanity directly correlates to
being brave in mind, body, and livelihood. The vision that arises when
we engage in bravery allows us to have mastery over our minds—which
should be doubtless; our bodies—which should be unwavering; and our
livelihood—which should be free of cowardice. In this way, the Great
Eastern Sun shines over us, allowing us to be brave in every realm and
rule over our world.
our original ground of basic goodness, the Great Eastern Sun appears.
With basic goodness in our heart, we have a fresh start. Because we
understand our ancestral heritage from beginningless time, this vision
arises, which is Great—we are in a perpetual state of inspiration. Thus
the Eastern Sun shines, a result of both logic and heart, perpetually
allowing us to be warriors with vision.