Lion's Roar

3. BUDDHANATURE: YOU’RE PERFECT AS YOU ARE

THE MODERN WORLD HAS BECOME infatuated with the practice of meditation. Smiling meditators grace the covers of magazines. CEOs are bringing mindfulness into the workplace. We’re even teaching children to meditate at school. Seeing all the images and hearing the stories, it would be easy to think that the point of meditation is simply to sit in a certain posture following a certain technique.

But the real power of meditation isn’t in the method. It’s in shifting our perspective. In Mahayana Buddhism, we call this “the view.” The view is not a technique. It’s how we see ourselves and how we relate to our own thoughts and emotions. Without a shift in our view, even the most powerful meditation techniques will just reinforce old patterns and habits.

The essential view of buddhanature is as profound as it is simple: You are perfect, just as you are, in this very moment.

The problem with this view is that it doesn’t feel real to us. Focusing on the negativities that obscure our buddhanature, we can’t seem to experience it for ourselves.

I couldn’t.

I grew up in the middle of the Himalayas, right at the foot of Mount Manaslu, the eighth-highest mountain, when I was just a few years old. I was born into a fairy tale.

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