Developing the mind of a Hero
How to become a Hero... This was the topis of a Saturday seminar at the Hamilton Samudra Kadampa Buddhist Centre. Unfortunately there was no gamma radiation, no radioactive spiders, and the bald guy that lead the seminar couldn't even control people or things with his mind - BORING!
Haha ok, different kind of hero. According to these Buddhist teachings, a hero is completely selfless. A hero has no self-interest, everything is done for the good of others. A hero has what they call "universal love" - equanimity, compassion, wisdom, and empathy. These powerful and important traits take time and diligence to develop.
Before we can grow these traits, our first task is in becoming more and more selfless. We must learn to exist as consciousness alone, letting go of the "body" and the "mind". We do not intend to create some "new" reality, rather opening our eyes to the fake reality and accept the true reality. Meditation is a must. We should meditate on subjects such as emptiness/detachment, death and karma.
Meditation on emptiness. Detachment of the body from the mind, and the mind from the consciousness. Our bodies are impure. If we can detach from them, shift priorities away from merely survival, we will immediately be able to create a higher level of selflessness. As with our body, our minds do not encompass all of who/what we are either. Our consciousness (or spirit/soul if you prefer) travels beyond a single lifespan, it moves along time from one self to the next. Death only leads to an end of self, our consciousness continues to "live" on. Karma however does not end with death. The karma we accumulate in one lifetime will follow our consciousness to the next life.
Death is the end of self. Meditation on death can help us embrace self's end, in turn we become more selfless. Karma is attached to our consciousness, it follows each self to the next, constantly accumulating. Due to this accumulation of karma it is imperative that we move the focus from our current life to our future ones. Meditation on karma brings us to terms with the fact that the actions of others' to us is our own doing - we do not get to pass the blame. This will lead us to less self-interest by creating a greater inclination towards selfless actions whereby creating the causes for and gathering positive karma.
Every cause creates an effect. The greater the cause, the greater the effect. Ignorance is the root of all evil, the root of all suffering. It is the ignorance of karma which creates a great effect on our own suffering. People are completely ignorant to the effects of daily lying, cheating and killing. We are lucky however in that negative karma can be purified - although this does not mean you should build negative karma with the intention to "purify later". Stop being ignorant - realize how your thoughts and actions effect those around you. Start putting in work - create the causes for positive karma, create them often, and create them in powerful quantities.