My Enduring Prayers
There exist an innate potentiality inside each one of us to reach Enlightenment. Within each individual, the Buddha seed is inherent and awaiting the right circumstances and conditions to germinate and be fully awakened from dormancy. The Buddha Nature is within us and we must have faith in our own self that we can reach our flawless True Essence.
Prayers are both the vows we make to our own inner Buddhahood-potential and outer the invocation to the Enlightened Buddhas and the other formless beings on their own path to enlightenment to aid and guide us along our life path to Nirvana. However, we ourselves are responsible for our own self-salvation and self-liberation. It is essential that we have grit and perseverance, so that we shall overcome the inner and outer obstacles to achieve our own Enlightenment. Once Enlightened, we shall exist in Nirvana, while in the midst of the life flow. We become untethered to all Karmic creation and perpetuation. In the here and now, we exist in the life stream innerwardly at peace, in the face of the changing life circumstances.
Prayers are neither meant for materialistic gains nor for us to cheat our Karmic consequences. The Karmic world is a closed system, and while inside it, we shall not escape our doings. We can never have what does not truly belong to us. No external source can grant nor deny us the fruits from the seeds we planted. Alas, I hear people praying for things beyond fate's control and beyond the context of the inevitable consequences. How can we pray to pick an apple from a lemon tree that we had already planted?
In my interpretation, prayers are the articulations and the reflections of the vows we make to ourselves, so that we can advance ourselves through sheer determination and perseverance. The prayers affirm our inner vows, so that can we externalize our dauntlessness to see through our own intentions. We should say the prayers for our Inner Light to grow brighter, so that we can self-illuminate our life path to the Timeless Inner Peace.
When our prayers are sacred and pure, they shall be acknowledged and we shall be aided and guided along our path to Nirvana. Our efforts to reach our full illumination will be subsidized by the universal altruism of the Buddhas and other formless beings who are on their own path to Enlightenment.
It is vital to remember that no external source can grant us our Enlightenment nor sweep away our Karmic consequences. The Enlightened Buddhas and other formless beings who are on their own path to Enlightenment can only help facilitate our path, help us to recognize the way, and guide us in the right direction. We must enter the Zen path and walk the steps. As we comprehend, assimilate, and live in the Teaching we shall experience and witness the Truth for ourselves.
As I light an incense, I pray to freely let-go of all egocentric clingingness and attachments. I pray for liberation from every sense and measurement, so that actuality shall be realized without the reality of the mind’s creation. I reinforce my fortitude to stand steady in the life winds and my determination to see the objectively reality. I vow to be self-vigilant of the mind’s habitual tendencies for bias and subjectivity . I pray that when faced with the ever changing life circumstances, I shall immediately recognize them as they truly are: a ceaseless stream of non-self-originating arising and departing karmic events.
I pray for others to overcome their adverse or unfavorable circumstances and for them to encounter more fortuitous and advantageous conditions, so they too may enter and make progress on the Zen life path.
Prayers also contain our own energy and positive intentions. The sincerity in our prayers give power and contribute to the manifestation of our altruistic aim and aspirations for others.
My prayers are the acknowledgment of the inner murmurs for my spiritual quest to reach Nirvana. I pray that I would be reminded during the challenging times that there is no randomness in life. I pray to recognize each challenge as a learning opportunity and a chance to apply The Teaching within the life stream. The challenging times shall pass. I pray to have the wisdom and compassion to discerningly navigate me onward and forward benevolently from the challenges.
I pray to wholly appreciate the present and take nothing for granted. The good times too are not random. They are the harvest of some previous positive actions. The good times shall too pass. I pray to inwardly remain steady within the ebb and flow that is life. Nothing of this life is enduring. Wisdom and the Inner Light shall guide me through the hurricane from life winds. Prayers shall fortify my determination and help to illuminate my path to the ultimate spiritual destination: Nirvana.