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Milarepa's Song to the Rock Demoness

by Ivy Hsu
April, 1997

This is a part of a song that Milarepa sang in his conversations with the Rock Demoness of Ling-Ba [1]:

River, ripples, and waves, these three,
When emerging, arise from the ocean itself.
When disappearing, they disappear into the ocean itself.

Habitual thinking, love, and possessiveness, these three,
When arising, arise from the alaya1 consciousness itself.
When disappearing, they disappear into the alaya consciousness itself.

Self-awareness, self-illumination, self-liberation, these three,
When arising, arise from the mind itself.
When disappearing, they disappear into the mind itself.

The unborn, unceasing, and unexpressed, these three,
When emerging, arise from the nature of being itself.
When disappearing, they disappear into the nature of being itself.

The visions of demons, clinging to demons, and thoughts of demons,
When arising, arise from the Yogin himself.
When disappearing, they disappear into the Yogin himself.

Since demons are the phantoms of the mind,
If it is not understood by the Yogin that they are empty appearances,
And even if he thinks they are real, meditation is confused.

But the root of the delusion is in his own mind.
By observation of the nature of manifestations,
He realizes the identity of manifestation and void,
And by understanding, he knows that the two are not different.

Meditation and not meditation are not two but one,
The cause of all errors is to look upon the two things as different.
From the ultimate point of view, there is no view.

If you make comparison between the nature of the mind
And the nature of the heavens,
Then the true nature of being itself is penetrated.

See, now, that you look into the true meaning which is beyond thought.
Arrange to enter into undisturbed meditation.
And be mindful of the Unceasing Intuitive Sensation!


Footnotes

  1. alaya consciousness: fundamental consciousness


References

  1. "The Hundred Thousand Songs - Selections from Milarepa, Poet-Saint of Tibet", translated by Antoinette K. Gordon.