What The Buddha Moon Taught Me

The Wesak or “Buddha” moon (first Full moon of May,)  is one of the most spiritually powerful of the year. Based on the history and legend, it is when the two streams of consciousness represented by Master Jesus Christ and Lord Buddha, come together to illuminate the Earth and all sentient beings upon her (if they would so receive the blessing.) Wesak this year is Saturday, 5.5.12 at 8:35 pm PDT.

Currently (I am writing this on May 2, 2012) we are in the week leading up to this powerful moon and its transformational qualities are already starting to be felt. The astrological dynamics are that of Taurus (Sun) and Scorpio (moon) which have to do with what we value and what is our deepest truth and integrity, respectively.

Let me back up and say that I am coming off of what has been two of the most difficult, yet spiritually rewarding weeks I’ve had in some time. Two weeks ago (in perfect, dynamic Wesak moon style,) I went to a public teaching with His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Long Beach. I consider His Holiness one of my root teachers so it is always a very potent and transformative experience when I see him. I was joking with a friend that last week was the “Heaven & Hell” tour, as I went from a very blissful, high spiritual experience to the pit of 3D reality complete with egos all over the place, lots of projection and even people cursing at and insulting me! Talk about disorienting and confusing! I was also joking that I was in a Bardo, and now that I am on the other side of it, I truly think that I was. I believe we have these moments at times in our lives and we don’t have to be dead or otherwise out-of-body to experience them either. It’s as if the Universe says, “Hey you, you’re going to be working with *this* for awhile.” 

The Tibetan word bardo means literally “intermediate state” – also translated as “transitional state” or “in-between state” or “liminal state”. In Sanskrit the concept has the name antarabh?va. It is a concept which arose soon after the Buddha’s passing, with a number of earlier Buddhist groups accepting the existence of such an intermediate state, while other schools rejected it.

Used loosely, the term “bardo” refers to the state of existence intermediate between two lives on earth. According to Tibetan tradition, after death and before one’s next birth, when one’s consciousness is not connected with a physical body, one experiences a variety of phenomena. These usually follow a particular sequence of degeneration from, just after death, the clearest experiences of reality of which one is spiritually capable, and then proceeding to terrifying hallucinations that arise from the impulses of one’s previous unskillful actions. For the prepared and appropriately trained individuals the bardo offers a state of great opportunity for liberation, since transcendental insight may arise with the direct experience of reality, while for others it can become a place of danger as the karmically created hallucinations can impel one into a less than desirable rebirth.

The term bardo can also be used metaphorically to describe times when our usual way of life becomes suspended, as, for example, during a period of illness or during a meditation retreat. Such times can prove fruitful for spiritual progress because external constraints diminish. However, they can also present challenges because our less skillful impulses may come to the foreground, just as in the sidpa bardo.  ~ Wikipedia

If I don’t explain what you ought to know, you can tell me all about it on the next Bardo. ~ David Bowie, “Quicksand”

Needless to say, no one likes to be insulted, especially a 100% Empath and Highly Sensitive Person like me. I became very hurt and angry over my recent experiences which then made their way to a pretty black depression for a couple of days. Without going into too much backstory here, the folks doing the insulting ran anywhere from a stranger at a restaurant, to a member of my own family of origin, so the Universe made sure to get all the bases covered. In the bath tonight (where I often do my best thinking!) it all started to become clear as crystal. I mean really lovely, like something out of Obi Wan Kenobi’s Jedi brain. We can all have these moments of course, and often when we are the most defeated and deflated is when the clarity comes in.

There is a lot I could say about it, but I’m going to give you my best Cliff Notes version so I can still keep your attention and don’t give myself a hand cramp. The gist of what I received can easily be summed up in the points below, and also asks the question as my former teacher used to say, “Just who do you THINK you ARE, anyway?”

1) Love your neighbor as yourself. Love your enemies and pray for those that hurt you. ~ Jesus Christ

2) If it is not truthful and not helpful, don’t say it. If it is truthful and helpful, wait for the right time. ~ Buddha

3) If you are willing to look at another person’s behavior toward you as a reflection of the state of their relationship with themselves rather than a statement about your value as a person, then you will, over a period of time cease to react at all. ~ Yogi Bhajan

There my friends, is the beautiful crystal ray of wisdom that led finally led me out of the dark Bardo contained in these simple, but very powerful statements. It is also helpful to ask the question, “Just WHO is it that gets hurt?” If we can get to that truth dear readers, we are truly free.

Happy Buddha Moon to all! 

May you be well.

May you be at peace.

May you be filled with loving-kindness.

Rev. Irma Kaye Sawyer

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Rev. Irma Kaye Sawyer

Rev. Irma Kaye Sawyer is an akashic records reader, interfaith minister, intuitive counselor, energy healing practitioner and writer. She currently resides in Laguna Hills, California. Irma has been involved in the holistic healing arts community as a practitioner and teacher since 1992.

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