Lessons from a Banyon Tree

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[This graphic is from Krishna Das’ upcoming Kirtan Wallah tour, which will be with us in Halifax for two days, July 18 and 19. It seems that Krishna Das and I getting and giving the same messages these days.]

You must understand that you already possess within you the power to become a buddha. You must know with absolute certainty within your being that you are a buddha. You don’t need empowerments, you don’t need gurus, you don’t need special retreats or courses or instructions. You don’t need confirmation or approval from your friends in the sangha. You must understand within your very being that you already posses everything that is necessary to become a buddha, that you lack nothing. If you don’t know this now, you will never become a buddha. To become buddha is to understand that you already posses the capacity and power to become a buddha RIGHT NOW! that you already are a buddha. Until you know this with absolute certainty, you will never become one. You will always be looking outside yourself for permission to be a buddha, for confirmation of buddhahood. You will always be going to the next retreat, the next lama, the next ritual or empowerment. You will always be trying to buy buddhahood, to consume buddhahood. Keep doing that and you will never find it because you will never understand that you already possess buddhahood within you, that you lack nothing. You will always be giving away the power that you already posses to someone or something else, a teacher, a community, a spiritual system. If you keep looking outside yourself for buddhahood, you will never find it. The Buddha did not need anyone to tell him that he was awakened, to tell him that he was a Buddha. When asked about the truth of his enlightenment, he touched the earth. The earth itself was his witness. I believe what he was saying that he was a human being of this earth, and that was proof enough. Buddhanature is inherent in all phenomena, and it was already his natural state as a human being. Stop giving your power away. Find the power to become a buddha within yourself.

—Shaun Bartone

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