The great Buddhist saint Nagarjuna moved around naked except for a loincloth and, incongruously, a golden begging bowl gifted to him by the King, who was his disciple.

One night he was about to lie down to sleep among the ruins of an ancient monastery when he noticed a thief lurking behind one of the columns. “Here, take this,” said Nagarjuna, holding out the begging bowl.

“That way you won’t disturb me once I have fallen asleep.”

The thief eagerly grabbed the bowl and made off – only to return next morning with the bowl and a request. He said, “When you gave away this bowl so freely last night, you made me feel very poor. Teach me how to acquire the riches that make this kind of light-hearted detachment possible.”

Circulate Everything

We keep everything in the warehouse but never want to give, including our thoughts which has helped us to grow. Things which we have not used for so many years but still we are possessive about it.

Ask yourself why? Why we are not ready to give anything and we are always eager to receive. This question will definitely stir inside of you. It will give you a thousand and one answers but all the answers will be just an excuse.

We are not ready to give. The reason behind it is only one that is we are not connected with ourselves.

The difference between us and Nagarjuna is only one he knows himself and we don’t know ourselves.

Keep aside all the scriptures and guidance given by all the Buddhas. Forget about “Who Am I” also. Be with yourself and ask yourself what you have. All the answers you will get will be of objective world and not from your subjectivity.

The moment you will be finished with all your answers and suddenly you will find that there is no answers. Who remains is emptiness. Empty of all thoughts, feelings, judgements, comparison etc. This emptiness is you. You will find everything is there in your emptiness. Suddenly all your possessions will fall apart. You will find freshness and newness from within. As if flower is just bloom.

As soon as this experience will be there you will feel unburden from within. Certain happiness which is not because of the objective world or any achievements it is just your own overflowing energy will be there.

When you were a child. At time your whole focus was on giving and sharing. Say you have only one chocolate in your pocket and you met your friend. Have you thought that I will keep it for myself. No. Even though your friend may not know that you have chocolate in your pocket. But you will give to him. As you know that by giving this chocolate you are not losing anything and for you the love was more important. Also you knew that if this chocolate is finished my parents will give me another one. Because at that time you are connected with your parents.

Similarly when you get connected with your emptiness you will be overflowing with the existential energy. That energy has everything in it whatever you require at this moment.

So when you will start overflowing with the universal energy you will not be possessive. You will be giver and not the receiver. You will receive many things but not to possess anything. You will know how to circulate and grow out of it.

Learning from the story Take This: Circulate Everything

Experience Learning

Remember one who knows how to die he only can circulate everything, transcend everything. He is ready to give everything.

What is death?

When you look at a cloud… and then later the cloud is not there. But, if you look deeply, you can see the cloud in the rain, and that is why it’s impossible for a cloud to die. A cloud can become rain, or snow, or ice, but a cloud cannot become nothing. And that is why the notion of death cannot be applied to reality. There is a transformation, there is a continuation, but you cannot say that there is death. Because in your mind, to die, means you suddenly become nothing. From someone, you suddenly become no one… When you can remove these notions, you are free and you have no fear.

Einstein famously wrote, in The World As I See It (1933): “Enough for me the mystery of the eternity of life, and the inkling of the marvelous structure of reality, together with the single-hearted endeavor to comprehend a portion, be it ever so tiny, of the reason that manifests itself in nature.”

All carbon based life is made up of recycled material. Every atom in the universe is recycled. Nothing is every destroyed. Energy becomes matter becomes energy in an endless cycle. Of course that’s not the same as saying our “consciousness” continues after death, but it’s one reason scientists such as Einstein were supportive of many Buddhist concepts — and not fearful of their own deaths.

A buddha is not in birth and death, a buddha is not deluded by birth and death.

These statements are the essence of the words of the two Zen masters, Jiashan and Dingshan. You should certainly not neglect them, because they are the words of those who attained the way.

Those who want to be free from birth and death should understand the meaning of these words. If you search for a buddha outside birth and death, it will be like trying to go to the southern country of Yue with your spear heading towards the north, or like trying to see the Big Dipper while you are facing south; you will cause yourself to remain all the more in birth and death and lose the way of emancipation.

Just understand that birth-and-death is itself nirvana. There is nothing such as birth and death to be avoided; there is nothing such as nirvana to be sought. Only when you realize this are you free from birth and death.

It is a mistake to suppose that birth turns into death. Birth is a phase that is an entire period of itself, with its own past and future. For this reason, in buddha-dharma birth is understood as no-birth. Death is a phase that is an entire period of itself, with its own past and future. For this reason, death is understood as no-death.

In birth there is nothing but birth and in death there is nothing but death. Accordingly, when birth comes, face and actualize birth, and when death comes, face and actualize death. Do not avoid them or desire them.

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