Aware, Awake, and Serene
This is called meeting with the Buddha. We stay aware, awake. This is what buddho means: what’s aware, awake, serene. When that’s the case, we’re living with the Buddha. We’ve met with awareness. We’ve met with brightness. We don’t send the mind anywhere else. It gathers in here. We’ve reached our Buddha. Even though he’s already passed away, that was just the body. The real Buddha is awareness that’s serene and bright. When you meet with this, that’s all you have to know. Let everything gather right here.
Let go of everything, leaving just this singular awareness. But don’t get deluded, okay? Don’t lose track. If a vision or a voice arises in the mind, let it go. Leave it be. You don’t need to take hold of anything at all. Just take hold of the awareness. Don’t worry about the future; don’t worry about the past. Stay right here. Ultimately you get so that you can’t say that you’re going forward, you can’t say that you’re going back, you can’t say that you’re staying in place. There’s nothing to be attached to. Why? Because there’s no self there, no you, no yours. It’s all gone.
This is the Buddha’s teaching: He tells us to be “all gone” in this way. He doesn’t have us grab hold of anything. He has us be aware like this — aware and letting go.
Aware and Letting Go
This is your duty right now, yours alone. Try to enter into the Dhamma in this way. This is the path for gaining release from the round of wandering-on. Try to let go, to understand, to set your heart on investigating this.
Don’t be worried about this person or that. Your children, your grandchildren, your relatives, everybody: Don’t be worried about them. Right now they’re fine. In the future they’ll be just like this: like you are right now. Nobody stays on in this world. That’s the way it has to be. This is a condition, a truth, that the Buddha taught. All the things that don’t have any truth to them, he has us leave them be. When you leave them be, you can see the truth.
If you don’t leave them be, you won’t see the truth. That’s the way things are. Everybody in the world has to be this way. So don’t be worried. Don’t fasten onto things.
Thinking with Discernment; Being Aware with Discernment
If the mind is going to think, let it think, but think using discernment. Think with discernment. Don’t think with foolishness. If you think about your grandchildren, think about them with discernment, not with foolishness. Whatever there is, you can think about it, you can be aware of it, but think with discernment, be aware with discernment. If you’re really aware with discernment, you have to let go. You have to leave things be. If you think with discernment and are aware with discernment, there’s no suffering, no stress. There’s just happiness, peace, and respite, all in one. The mind gathers like this. All you need to hold onto in the present is the breath.
This is your duty now. It’s not the duty of anyone else. Leave their duties to them. Your duty is your duty. And your duty right now is to keep your awareness at your mind, making sure it doesn’t get stirred up. Your duty is to know how your mind is doing. Is it worried about anything? Is it concerned about anything? Examine the mind while you’re lying here sick. Don’t take on the duties of your children. Don’t take on the duties of your grandchildren. Don’t take on the duties of anyone else. Don’t take on any outside duties at all. They’re none of your business. Now’s the time for you to let go, to leave things be. When you let go in this way, the mind will be at peace. This is your duty now, right here in the present.