compassion in emptiness

When a friend of his in Gainesville could not afford to pay a debt after an accident with her vehicle, River had Aleka’s Attic play a benefit to raise money for her. Even though he could have easily afforded to just give her the money, he thought first of her self-esteem and took the other route. This shows a generosity and compassion so typical of the millionaire teen actor.
—  Excerpt from John L. Barker’s book ‘Running on Empty.’
I Dare You - Chapter 3 - JohnTen - Mafia Leader x Detective - Soulmate!AU

Chapter 1 - Intro ; Chapter 2 ; Chapter 3 ; Chapter 4 ; Chapter 5 ; Chapter 6

Word Count: 1422

Trigger Warning: Offensive Language, Graphic Descriptions

Genre: Angst, Mafia!AU, Soulmate!AU


Ten lifted his thumb off of his arm, his body numb and his mind reeling.

What the hell had just happened?

This wasn’t what it was like. This wasn’t it at all.

This wasn’t what it usually felt like when he sent the emotions of his raw soul into the mark.

When he did that before, all he would feel afterwards was emptiness. Like all the feelings had gone and left him completely dry and devoid of any hint of compassion.

It left him as empty as an abandoned sea shell washed onto the shore by the grey tides of a storming sea that warned of danger as the clouds in the sky grew as dark as the hole in Ten’s aching heart.

But not this time.

This time was different.

This time, it didn’t feel like he’d screamed into the void. It didn’t feel like even his echo wouldn’t give him the satisfaction of answering his plea.

This time, it hit a wall. A soft, warm, and comforting wall.

It was like his emotions were almost tangible, and the feeling of warmth enveloped him in a small cocoon, wrapping around him, causing Ten to draw in on himself and curl into a fetal position on the couch he was sitting on.

It was like plunging into a bath of lukewarm water he could breathe in; instead of feeling suffocated and claustrophobic, it felt like a safe haven.

It was like constantly screaming at his reflection in the mirror until he punches it and the glass shatters, but instead of getting cuts and bleeding out, he falls through the shards and lands on a mattress that slowly but calmly lulls him to sleep, surrendering into the blissful comfort of its touch.

His tears slowly drying on his cheeks as his body shuddered at the excessive crying and dehydration, Ten’s stinging eyes drooped until he could no longer hold them open, and he drifted off to a dreamless sleep.

——-

Johnny’s sobbing had just subsided, and he hadn’t even realized what he’d done until he felt a surge of warmth come back to him as his hand moved off of the soulmate band on his arm.

He could feel him, and it broke his heart.

It made no sense to him.

All this loneliness, the heartache, the emotional instability and impending insanity, it all came from one person.

How could one person hold so much pain and not break?

How could a single soul bear so much sadness?

And how could someone who bears so much anguish be the leader of the most dreaded mafia?

Who was he after, exactly, and why did this person seem to contradict the very meaning of his current existence?

It made absolutely no sense to Johnny.

He looked down at his arm and traced the soulmate mark, remembering what he’d done just moments before.

He had sent out a hug, as ridiculous as it seemed. He engulfed his soulmate into a hug.

The pain did not just abruptly stop, like it had come to a halt or been yanked out. It had been dulled down to a throbbing until it eventually disappeared.

Was his soulmate okay? What if they’re seriously hurt? he worried.

He was worried about a mafia leader who had murdered his own men and wreacked havoc in the city. What the hell?

Get your shit together, Johnny. Fucking hell, he thought at himself, angrily running his hands through his hair.

He’s a killer, he reminded himself. He doesn’t deserve anyone’s sympathy, pain or no pain, he pushed back in his seat, seething.

His back felt stiff and hurt when he moved. It was now time to lock up and go home.

Yes, home. An empty apartment with no one who gives a shit about me whatsoever. Home.

He glanced at his arm, a little voice in the back of his head pointedly reminding him that he was currently no longer ‘alone’.

He disgustedly told it to shut up, bewildered at even considering the thought of trying to communicate with a low-life like the one he had been fruitlessly chasing for months.

He tidied up his office in a daze, not even paying attention to or remembering how he had done that.

It was dangerous for him to be driving in such a messed up state, but he took his car back home instead of hailing a cab, noiselessly parking in front of his porch and unlocking his front door as the very first rays of light peaked out, signaling dawn.

It was already this late. Or early. Whichever it was anymore, he couldn’t possibly care.

His mind had been blank, forcefully ignoring the thought that kept trying to resurface from the farthest corner in his mind to which he had tried and clearly failed to send it.

He eyed the food he had taken out of the fridge and sickeningly shoved it back into the compartment, dinner clearly off his mind at the moment.

Nothing was making any sense, and it felt too contradictory for Johnny to actually comprehend what was going on.

A criminal with feelings, he sneered uneasily, peeking at his arm.

Yeah, right.

He washed up in the shower, the soulmate mark drawing his full attention because he was not used to it at all. It looked eerily beautiful, but the insignia it bore terrified him more than helped him feel at ease.

What would happen when his coworkers at the station saw it?

Would they want to bring his soulmate in?

Johnny stopped that train of thought, aggitated once again.

This was ridiculous. He was not going to begin giving a shit about someone like that just because fate had fucked up or thought it funny to shove the both of them together.

He dried off and got dressed into his briefs and loose flannel shirt, striding over to his windows in order to shut the blinds until the light of the blaring sun was gone and it looked like midnight inside the confines of his cold and empty room.

What if he reached out to him again in his sleep? Would it wake him up?

You don’t care, he reminded himself sternly, childishly kicking up a fuss with the blanket as he tried and failed to adjust his sleeping position.

Of course he was restless.

He lay in bed for another half hour or so, and just as he was about to get up and do something, he felt a feather-like touch on his forearm, somewhere around the location of his mark.

Like he hadn’t been chastising himself the entire time, he kicked off the bed sheets and jumped over to turn on the lights and grab his glasses, temporarily being blinded by the sudden brightness but immediately looking at his forearm.

In a small yet very clear handwriting was a little note written right underneath the soulmate mark.

Thank you :)

Johnny looked at his arm with a most unemotional expression, yet feeling the urge to scream.

A smiley? A smiley? Was he fucking serious? Was he sure this was the right person and not a completely different human who simply had the chance of carrying the same symbol instead?

He hung his head back, resting it on the wall as he slowly slid his body down to come to rest with the ice cold tiles of the uncarpeted floor.

He could get a pen and write anything on his arm and his soulmate would see it.

I actually do have a soulmate, his heart traitorously leaped, and he kicked at nothing in particular as he banged his head back with the wall once, groaning in anger and frustration.

He wasn’t going to do this. No.

During the time he’d debated whether to answer or not, he felt more feather-like touches on his arm, and he immediately looked down to read the new notes.

I’m terribly sorry for having woken you up, I hope you rest well

Next to the note was a little sketched drawing of a fluffed pillow and a folded blanket.

Johnny’s mind refused to deal with this shit any longer. It went from being angry with the situation to flat out ignoring it altogether, denying that it was happening at all.

Not writing anything back, he got up to switch the lights back off and remove his glasses as he walked over to his wide, empty bed, completely blanking everything out and slipping out of consciousness soon after his head had hit the pillow.

3

Tibetan Buddhist tantric ritual objects in a hermitage near Lhasa, Tibet:

1) A dorje and drilbu: representing the indestructible power of compassion, and the realisation of emptiness. 

2) A mandala offering: representing the universe and the inner mind.

3) A kapaleh: a ritual vessel made of a human skull; a reminder of the impermanence of life. 

November 15th, 2014 - X Marks the Spot

AUTHOR: Anonymous

15th of November, 2014 - X Marks the Spot

“Care for something to drink?” Arthur asked with a casual tone. He gracefully rolled the rum around in his glass, making the ice clink together. The strong taste of the rum would mask the sour taste of the sleeping draught he had poured into the glass earlier.

Alfred looked up from the map and his papers. He removed his glasses with one hand and rubbed his eyes. He gave Arthur a weary smile and accepted the offered rum. “I suppose one glass wouldn’t hurt.”

“That’s the spirit,” Arthur agreed. “So… any luck figuring out this little puzzler?” he asked as he set his glass down on the table and stared at the treasure map, hoping it would reveal its secrets. He knew that the compass in Alfred’s luggage held the necessary clues, but the American wasn’t willing to share. And for good reason; even the naive American could tell that the English con artist couldn’t be trusted. After all, Arthur had stolen Alfred’s wallet the first time they met. He would have gotten away with it too, if it hadn’t been for the other thieves.

“No, not yet.” Alfred sighed and sipped the rum. He coughed as the alcohol burned the back of his throat. He frowned at the map, nursing his drink in silence. Alfred wasn’t good at keeping secrets, so Arthur could tell that he was genuinely puzzled by the map and the compass. Eventually Alfred placed his empty glass next to Arthur’s. “I think I have an idea, but it’s too early to tell. I should know more by morning.”

“I’m sure a good night’s sleep will make everything clearer,” Arthur suggested.

“But it’s still early!” Alfred protested, even as he began to yawn. He stretched his arms and blinked tiredly. “Maybe you’re right,” he admitted as he stood up, swaying from side to side. Arthur guided him over to his bed, helping him as he began to stumble.

Alfred sat down heavily and pulled the other man with him. He grabbed Arthur’s wrist and gave him a strange look. “Hey, do you ever feel… kind of odd?”

“What do you mean?” Arthur asked, feigning innocence as he his head to the side. He wondered if he should have added even more sleeping draught to the glass. It was taking Alfred an eternity to fall asleep.

Oblivious to Arthur’s plot, Alfred continued to stare thoughtfully into the distance. Finally, he turned and gave Arthur a hopeless shrug. “Like you’re not the way you’re supposed to be.”

Arthur smirked. “No. I tend not to care much what society thinks of me.”

“Yeah, I like that about you.” Alfred smiled fondly and leaned forward. He stared deeply into Arthur’s eyes and blinked dreamily. “I think I like you.”

His lips gently brushed against Arthur’s, sending a pleasant shock down Arthur’s spine. But before they could even begin a proper kiss, the entire weight of Alfred’s body slumped against the smaller man. Arthur huffed in disappointment. He had been impatiently waiting for the sleeping draught to take effect and now he found himself wishing that it hadn’t. Frowning to himself, he pushed Alfred back onto the bed, guiding the young man’s head down to the pillow and lifting his feet up onto the mattress. He took off Alfred’s shoes and then wondered why he was wasting time.

As he stole away with the map and the compass, Arthur felt a uncomfortable knot start to form in his gut. He hadn’t actually been drinking, so he knew he couldn’t blame the alcohol.

Really, it was for the best that he left. Poor sweet Alfred was reminding him of feelings he hadn’t felt in years, and a con artist couldn’t afford to have a conscience.

Time Flies: A Short Gorillaz Drabble

Summary: Murdoc realizes how fast the years are going by and is feeling quite emotional about it.

Phase: Humanz

Warning: This gets kinda cheesy and cliche. I was bored when I wrote this.

—————————

Murdoc Niccals, the mastermind and creator of the legendary band Gorillaz. Everyone knows him as the evil, demon, bastard bass player who constantly abuses his blue-haired front man and gets naked on stage in front of children (think Dirty Harry), and while that is true, today was not the case. Nope, not today.

For once, he actually felt a little bit of compassion in his nonexistent, black empty hole of a heart. He noticed how his band has grown, how much success they had, and how much they’ve dominated the music world; he smiled at the thought of it, but it didn’t take long for it to fade. The thing he noticed the most was how much his band members have grown….even Face-ache, he hated to admit it, but it was true. The blue dunce managed to somewhat mature over the years and his body is literally turning into just legs and almost no torso. 

Then there was Russel, the chill drummer who had an ear for music. He always liked him, well, except for the times when he punched him in the nose and broke it, but looking back on it now, it was well-needed. Murdoc never really had a problem with Russel, in fact, he kinda admired how laid back and collected he was. The complete opposite of him. He could learn from Russ if he truly wanted to, but it just wasn’t in him.

And who could forget young Noodle? The little Japanese girl who got sent in a Fed-Ex crate and plays the hell out of a guitar. It seemed like it was just yesterday; the famous radio helmet, The Game of Death thing versus Russel, her completely destroying the gorillas in the Clint Eastwood video, all of that was just a blur. Now, here she is, all grown up and in her twenties, smoking cigarettes and sticking her tongue out. Maybe, he influenced her a little too much.

Still, this was his band. They went through a lot together and he was pretty sure there was more to come. The adventure wasn’t over yet, it was just beginning and boy, he couldn’t imagine the hell that was awaiting them in the future. More memes, 2D’s body turning into 100% leg and 1% head, Russel having a REAL appetite, Noodle getting attacked by tentacle monsters, visiting more haunted houses, flying around Saturnz Barz naked, being featured in amazing commercials, scaring the children, working Damon’s nerves—

Wait a minute…that isn’t hell. Hell is getting constantly spooked by the Boogeyman every single second on Plastic Beach.

This right here? This is what they did best and regardless of all the rough times and trials, they still had fun along the way.

And with that, he couldn’t, and wouldn’t, wish for anything better.

The End 

“Call me wild, drinking up the sunshine…”

A modern mix for Lily Evans: (listen)


East of Eden - Zella Day // Say It, Just Say It - The Mowgli’s // Kink’s Shirt - Matt Nathanson // Kaleidoscope - Joe Brooks // Strange Girl - The Zolas // Sloom - Of Monsters and Men // Dreams - Gabrielle Aplin and Bastille // I Found - Amber Run // Compass - Zella Day // Team - Lorde // Empty Gold - Halsey // We Are the Hearts - EXGF

baemisuser  asked:

Vlad accepts Dani as his heir instead of shunning her.

(on fanfiction)

Daydreaming

It was a worse than useless habit to have, imagining Daniel living here with him willingly as his son and going about his day in the castle… only to turn and find all of the rooms and hallways empty.

Compass

Something inside of Vlad, something he had tried to bury so deep inside him that it would never resurface long enough to whisper doubts in his ear, told him that this was crossing a line that even a half ghost should not defy… that this was wrong.

Compulsory

Vlad fiddled around with the permutations of the last three readouts, stepping back to look at every capsule containing the beginnings of a clone; one of them would have to be just like Daniel… one of them would have to work.

Compartment

Steam hissed out of each module as he pressed the button that slid the doors open to reveal two rows of clones, perfectly modeled and adequately incubated; now it was time to see how accurately they mirrored the boy he would have as his son one way or another.

Damage

The entire batch was an unmitigated disaster, full of melted puddles of goop, skeletons, hulks, midgets, and by some strange stroke of misfortune, a female version of the son he yearned for.

Dismal

Vlad stared morosely into his fireplace, wondering not for the first time how he had gotten here and how everything always managed to go so completely and utterly wrong.

Compete

The clones all vied for his attention and affection, but how could any of them compare to the original none of them could ever hope to be?

Accident

He never meant for them to be unstable, but he didn’t realize just how fragile they were until they tried to prove their worth to him and simply fell apart as he watched them trying to prove which one could fly faster or go intangible longer.

Coughing

He avoided the basement after that, leaving his misbegotten children to their own devices, only checking up on them in person long enough to give them food and take yet another reduced tally of which ones were left, which had melted, and which were in the process of literally hacking up a lung.

Remind

The girl stared up at him with Daniel’s eyes every time he brought down a simple tray of food, adoration and worship he had never earned from anyone gleaming in the blue depths for no other reason than he had created her and she owed him everything.

Tea

On those days when he saw the clones, he abandoned his beloved soothing teas for a much stronger drink.

Difference

Days and nights passed as he poured over his notes and calculations, trying to figure out some way he could go about this differently, some way that he could create what he actually wanted, could take Daniel’s eyes and soul and make sure they were part of a body that didn’t destroy itself as he looked on in horror.

Nothing

When his perfect model was exposed to the air and dissolved slowly, conscious of his melting body throughout the entire ordeal, Vlad realized that nothing would work; even if he could find the missing piece of the cloning process, he couldn’t go through that again, couldn’t watch any version of Daniel die so horribly at his hand when all he wanted was for the boy to be here, happily beside him.

Forward

So he gave up his cloning attempts, shutting up his lab, and waiting with morbid fascination to see which of the clones would be the last one to dissolve and leave him alone again except for a cat and a hologram that shared a name.

Summer

Weeks passed and the girl was the only one left.

Believe

It surprised him, but then, Daniel was always surprising him, so it made sense that even when he woke every day expecting a fresh puddle of green slime coating his lab walls, the clone greeted him at the bottom of the stairs with a brilliant smile.

Questions

As he looked into those deep blue eyes, grateful for no reason and excited when he’d locked the girl down here as her brothers died around her, he asked himself why he had ignored what had been here this entire time instead of chasing after dreams that he now knew he could never achieve.

Worth

The girl was here and she still existed- no matter that she wasn’t Daniel because she was close enough and, for some unfathomable reason, she loved him like the father he’d always wanted to be.

Concern

She was tougher than he had given her credit for, that he could see just by the fact that she was still holding together in one piece, but it quickly became evident from the slightly green footprints left on his carpets once he invited her upstairs to share the large empty mansion with him, that she was not undamaged.

Taught

But if there was one thing Vlad had learned about himself, it was that he did not give in and he found a solution to anything he pursued long enough, so he frantically poured over all of the copious notes he had taken from the cloning process to see if there wasn’t a way to stabilize the remaining survivor before he ran out of time.

 Ring

As the phone rang repeatedly, Vlad had just enough time to wonder if this was actually a good idea, but then his public relations manager picked up and he found himself saying, “I have an announcement that I’d like to make.”

Press

Newspapers dropped everything as soon as they learned that billionaire Vladimir Masters had decided to adopt a little blue-eyed girl and make her heir to his vast and ever-growing fortune.

The deepest feeling of a compassion that does not seek to alter anything, paradoxically, alters everything. When you touch inside yourself that which is not seeking to alter anything, you’ve touched upon absolute nonresistance, and this alters your perception of everything. When your conditioning touches that inside, which is unconditioned, it alters your conditioning irrevocably. That is the sacred alchemy, and that is compassion.
—  Adyashanti, Emptiness Dancing

PLEASE stop taking your children to aquariums, zoos, circuses that use animals, and places like Sea World. And PLEASE stop telling your children how happy these animals are, because they are NOT. Would you be happy if you had to spend the rest of your life in a small cage or a bath tub? I don’t think so. ….Take them to a farm sanctuary instead, teach them love, compassion and kindness to animals. Not cruelty, captivity, and slavery.

Compassion hurts. When you feel connected to everything, you also feel responsible for everything. And you cannot turn away. Your destiny is bound with the destinies of others. You must either learn to carry the Universe or be crushed by it. You must grow strong enough to love the world, yet empty enough to sit down at the same table with its worst horrors.
—  Andrew Boyd
Realizing Our Nature as Both Emptiness and Love

‘In Mahayana Buddhism, the open, wakeful emptiness of awareness is our absolute nature. Our original nature is changeless, unconditioned, timeless and pure. When we bring this awareness to the relative world of form, love awakens. We meet the ever-changing stream of life - this living, dying, breathing world - with accepting presence and our hearts invariably open. What our mind recognizes as empty awareness, our heart experiences as love.

Our being resides in both the unmanifest and the manifest, the absolute and the relative. This truth, embodied in the Heart Sutra, is a considered gem of Mahayana teachings. As the sutra says: “Form is emptiness, emptiness is also form. Emptiness is not other than form, form is no other than emptiness.” The formless ocean of awareness gives rise to the varying and endless waves of life: emotions, trees, people, stars. Seeing that all life springs from one awareness, we realize our connectedness and feel the fullness of love. In cherishing all living beings with compassion, we recognize the empty, wakeful awareness that is our common source.

Loving life and realizing our essence as formless awareness cannot be separated from each other. As a Japanese proverb expresses, “Seeing pure awareness without engaging lovingly with our life is a daydream. Living in this relative world without vision is a nightmare.” We can be tempted, sometimes in pursuit of nonattachment, to distance ourselves from the messy wildness of our bodies and emotions, and from our relationships with each other. This pulling away leaves us in a disembodied daydream that is not grounded in awareness of our living world. On the other hand, if we immerse ourselves in the mental dramas and changing emotions of our lives without remembering the empty, wakeful awareness that is our original nature, we get lost in the nightmare of identifying as a separate, suffering self.’

- Tara Brach, Radical Acceptance, Awakening the Love that Heals Fear and Shame Within Us.

preguntar  asked:

I've have really tried to focus on my tonglen practice as of late due to the great amount of suffering that is enfolding in our world. I broke down and cried as I sat and felt the pain of those who are suffering overseas. What is your experience with tonglen and do you have any suggestions? The pain almost felt unbearable for me to handle. I felt so useless and vulnerable as I sent all my love and compassion to those around the world. But it didn't feel enough....

Too much Everything and not enough Emptiness. It is important to remember that Tonglen has two elements: Ultimate and Relative. 

Ultimately there is no suffering, only openness and freedom. The basic nature of existence is that of stainless and radiant bliss. Daily meditation is an important practice that introduces you to this infinite and eternal aspect of your existence. 

You cannot give others peace if you have none within yourself. Daily meditation helps you to recognize and meet your primordial and ultimate nature as that limitless space of peace. 

This has nothing to do with the happenings of the world or even your own life. It is a rediscovery of the reality behind consciousness itself. 

At the same time, as you say, there is much pain and suffering occurring all over the world. It is a privilege to have the opportunity to sit and meditate. Not only should that encourage us to persist in our daily meditation practices, but it should also encourage us to make room for others to do so as well. 

The relative aspect of Tonglen recognizes that although our basic and changeless nature is perfect and free, others like ourselves still experience suffering and its causes. Therefore we can help others and even grow ourselves by embracing that suffering and transforming it. 

The practice of Tonglen is simple: You inhale suffering and you exhale compassion. You inhale the fear, stuckness, and confusion, and you exhale spaciousness, love, and ease. 

This is impossible to do if you are not in touch with your empty and limitless essence. That is why every Tonglen session begins and ends with emptiness meditation. A Tonglen session goes as follows:

1. Emptiness/Openness. You take a moment to forget the world and forget your personality. You sit in radiant open communion with existence. You meditate on emptiness, as emptiness. 

Visualization can help you here. Sometimes I imagine the feeling I get when standing on a beach shore looking out at the ocean. It is expansive and open but loving and happy. Let this feeling become strong in you. 

2. Tonglen Breathing. Start the inhaling/exhaling process. When you inhale, visualize suffering as best suits you. I visualize it as a tar-like and disease-ridden smog. I inhale it into myself, into that endless and infinite field of radiance. It dissipates into nothingness. Then I exhale the love, peace, and compassion of that ocean-like emptiness from within. I visualize this as silvery and soothing mist. 

3. The Work. Once you’ve gotten the hang of remaining in touch with your boundless nature while inhaling suffering and exhaling compassion, you then actively visualize the subject of your Tonglen meditation. This can be a circumstance for yourself or for others. In your example, you can think on the attacks and atrocities committed out of ignorance around the world. 

When you inhale, visualize yourself taking in some of their suffering. When you exhale, visualize your exhalation nourishing and caring for them. 

As you grow more confident and capable in your Tonglen practice, you can extend this even to the murderers themselves. You will inhale their suffering and exhale your compassion. You will remember that if they too did not suffer from illusion, such acts would not have been committed. 

4. Close. Once you have had enough of the session, return your breathing to normal and let go of your visualizations. Come back in touch with your essence as the empty and infinite field of peace. Sit and let everything else go. 

All of this is very different from the type of breathing meditation taught in yoga classes in which we inhale happiness and exhale suffering. Tonglen is a very brave and difficult practice that challenges us to face the things that make us cringe and grow beyond them. 

The point of Tonglen is for you to discover how much space you have within to take on and dissipate the suffering around you, as well as how much compassion and love you have to give. It also cultivates a more fearless form of compassion in which you are not directed by fear or sadness but awareness and love. 

Take heart and keep at it, but don’t forget the balance between Ultimate and Relative. 

Namaste :) Much love. 

Tara (Sanskrit: तारा, tārā; Tib. སྒྲོལ་མ, Dölma) or Ārya Tārā, also known as Jetsun Dölma (Tibetan language:rje btsun sgrol ma) in Tibetan Buddhism, is a female Bodhisattva in Mahayana Buddhism who appears as a female Buddha in Vajrayana Buddhism. She is known as the “mother of liberation”, and represents the virtues of success in work and achievements. In Japan she is known as Tara Bosatsu (多羅菩薩), and little-known as Duōluó Púsà (多羅菩薩) in Chinese Buddhism.[1]

Tara is a tantric meditation deity whose practice is used by practitioners of the Tibetan branch of Vajrayana Buddhism to develop certain inner qualities and understand outer, inner and secret teachings about compassion and emptiness. Tara is actually the generic name for a set of Buddhas or bodhisattvas of similar aspect. These may more properly be understood as different aspects of the same quality, as bodhisattvas are often considered metaphors for Buddhist virtues.

The most widely known forms of Tārā are:

  • Green Tārā, (Syamatara) known as the Buddha of enlightened activity
  • White Tārā, (Sitatara) also known for compassion, long life, healing and serenity; also known as The Wish-fulfilling Wheel, or Cintachakra
  • Red Tārā, (Kurukulla) of fierce aspect associated with magnetizing all good things
  • Black Tārā, associated with power
  • Yellow Tārā, (Bhrikuti) associated with wealth and prosperity
  • Blue Tārā, associated with transmutation of anger
  • Cittamani Tārā, a form of Tārā widely practiced at the level of Highest Yoga Tantra in the Gelug School of Tibetan Buddhism, portrayed as green and often conflated with Green Tārā
  • Khadiravani Tārā (Tārā of the acacia forest), who appeared to Nagarjuna in the Khadiravani forest of South India and who is sometimes referred to as the “22nd Tārā”
Meditation Reveals and Heals

‘Sitting in mindfulness, both our bodies and mind can be at peace and totally relaxed. But this state of peace and relaxation differs fundamentally from the lazy, semi-conscious state of mind that one gets while resting and dozing. Sitting in such lazy semi-consciousness, far from being mindfulness, is like sitting in a dark cave. In mindfulness one is not only restful and happy, but alert and wake. Meditation is not evasion; it is a serene encounter with reality. The person who practices mindfulness should be no less awake that the driver of a car; if the practitioner isn’t awake he will be possessed by dispersion and forgetfulness, just as the drowsy driver is likely to cause a grave accident. Be as awake as a person walking on high stilts - any mis-step could cause the walker to fall. Be like a medieval knight walking weaponless in a forest of swords. Be like a lion, going forward with slow, gentle and firm steps. Only with this kind of vigilance can you realize total awakening.

For beginners, I recommend the method of pure recognition: recognition without judgment. Feelings, whether of compassion or irritation, should be welcomes, recognized, and treated on an absolutely equal basis; because both are ourselves. The tangerine I am eating is me. I plant with all my heart and mind. I clean this teapot with the kind attention I would have were I giving the baby Buddha or Jesus a bath. Nothing should be treated more carefully than anything else. In mindfulness, compassion, irritation, mustard green plant, and teapot are all sacred.

When possessed by a sadness, an anxiety, a hatred, or a passion or whatever, the method of pure observation and recognition may seem difficult to practice. If so, turn to meditation on a fixed object, using your own state of mind as meditation’s subject. Such meditation reveals and heals. The sadness or anxiety, hatred or passion, under the gaze of concentration and meditation reveals its own nature - a revelation that leads naturally to healing and emancipation. The sadness (or whatever has caused the pain) can be used as a means of liberation from torment and suffering, like using a thorn to remove a thorn. We should treat our anxiety, our pain, our hatred and passion gently, respecting, not resisting it, but living with it, making peace with it, penetrating into its nature by meditation on interdependence. One quickly learns how to select subjects of meditation that fit the situation. Subjects of meditation - like interdependence, compassion, self, emptiness, non-attachment - all these belong to the categories of meditation which have the power to reveal and heal.

Meditation on these subjects, however, can only be successful if we have built up a certain power of concentration, a power achieved by the practice of mindfulness in everyday life, in the observation and recognition of all that is going on. But the objects of meditation must be realities that have real roots in yourselves - not just subjects of philosophical speculation. Each should be like a kind of food that must be cooked for a long time over a hot fire. The pot is ourselves and the heat used to cook is the power of concentration. The fuel comes from the continuous practice of mindfulness. Without enough heat the food will never be cooked. But once cooked, the food reveals its true nature and helps lead us to liberation.’

- Thich Nhat Hanh, The Miracle of Mindfulness.