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First Person, Second Person
14m

First Person, Second Person

Pray like a Buddhist and a Christian.

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[Thomas McConkie, Mindfulness Teacher] In Gospel Meets Dharma, I've talked about prayer as second person, spiritual practice. I'm relating to a being greater than I am, more powerful. In Buddhist meditation, usually, habitually, it's not relating to another being, it's relating to beingness, I amness, it's in and of itself. In this practice, I'd like to blend the two. It's not something that we're necessarily taught to do in either school. But I think there's a unique opportunity here to kind of play with first and second person orientations in a contemplative practice like really notice the flavors and how they work together, hang together, or don't. Start by bringing awareness to the physical posture, sitting up in a way that you feel stable, supported, relaxed, and awake. Feel the body breathing the flow of sensation moment to moment, grounding, grounding, grounding. And allow awareness to open up here, to become very spacious, no boundaries, no borders. Release yourself as awareness into the infinite expanse. Absolutely everything happening, unfolding, manifesting moment to moment to moment, manifesting through you, as you, rising in and through your infinite spaciousness. It's all you. Just relax into the part of you that knows this. Feel how big you are, how spacious, how free. There's nothing to move towards, nothing to avoid. You're just sitting as non-seeking, non-grasping mind. No problems to solve, no need to effort or struggle. You simply are as you are, and not. Now want you to locate within your infinite expansiveness, the unique self, the self you follow around so intimately, whose contours you know from the inside out, this uniquely personal self. I want you to let go of your identity as the infinite expanse for just a moment and really focus on this quality of the uniquely personal. You are a unique being with a particular kind of body, a heart, a mind, a soul, a spirit, you have unique life experience, and you have hope in your heart. As this unique self, I want you to sense into this hope, your desires, not desires in the negative sense of attachments that cause suffering, but the righteous desires, the good which you hope for, the good which you give yourself to. And as this unique self, I invite you to have a relationship with what you hold to be ultimate, infinite, absolute, higher, whether to ultimate reality is God, universe, higher self, whatever you can relate to, whatever you can put trust in and commune with. Wanna invite you to simply engage in a relationship with this greater power. And as you engage, you know that you're known, you know that you're known and you feel that you're felt, and that the desires of your heart really matter. This infinite being is attuned to you, cares about how you feel, what you think, what you hope for. You know you have faith, that your hopes, your prayers are not in vain, but in some very meaningful way are imbued with power, and intention and are supported by this ultimate reality. In fact, you feel as you come into relationship with ultimate reality and formulate your thoughts, your intents, your desires, that this ultimate reality, this greater power instantaneously organizes around you to support you, conspires to help you. You feel yourself in deep communion and you trust what unfolds, what unfolds might not be what the personality wants or asked for, but at the deepest level of your truest self, you know there's an intelligence that animates you, supports you, and responds to you. And this intelligence is none other than your truest self. You are this intelligence and you participate in its very nature. Feel your flexibility, feel your creativity, in a given moment, you can stand as the ultimate, give yourself to the flow, the activity of source of divine nature. You are infinite. In another moment, you can pick up the identity of the finite, the unique self, and feel power raining down from on high. Not only raining down, but raining up, percolating up through the earth herself from the ground beneath you, from the 10 directions, utterly held, blessed and supported.

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