“People usually consider walking on water or in thin air a miracle. But I think the real miracle is not to walk either on water or in thin air, but to walk on earth. Every day we are engaged in a miracle which we don’t even recognize: a blue sky, white clouds, green leaves, the black, curious eyes of a child — our own two eyes. All is a miracle.” -Thich Nhat Hahn
This, to me, demonstrates that Heaven is right here and now if we open ourselves to it.
But I also believe hell is right here also.
It came to my mind this morning, this both exist right here for us every day. It is our view of this world that makes the difference.
If I think about some of the most horrible times in my life, I can clearly see that I felt I was in a living hell. Yet I now know that at those same times, I was surrounded by all of these miracles and beauty.
I am just now seeing that being aware and accepting that both of these exist in every moment, may just be what enlightenment is all about.
If one can see this clearly and not cling to either one, you are at peace. You understand the nature of our existence.
I believe it’s about equanimity (Upekkha). To have a pure mind, without judgment or illusion.
It’s like Bhante Sujatha says on his Meditation CD Putting Out the Fires in Your Mind, he talks about being like an old man sitting by the edge of a Lake. You watch the animals come and go, the large ferocious ones, the small furry ones, the ones that fly, the ones that crawl. You watch them all with equal attention, yet without judgment or expectation. You are simply an observer.
This paints a picture in my mind of what I am referring to here. The large scary animals, and the cute furry ones are all part of our existence. Just as heaven and hell are all present for us each moment of every day.
If we can truly be at peace with that, I think one is very near the summit.
You see Heaven and Hell are right here and right now. And they are both OK. Don’t run for one or the other, and do not cling to one or other. Be a silent observer, be at peace and harmony.
I don’t know what Enlightenment looks like, but I think this may perhaps be a glimpse of what it looks like.
May you each find peace and happiness, and may you all reach Buddhahood (buddhabhāva) in this life.
May you be well, happy and peaceful.