Both – The Principle of the Bodhisattva


Kuan Yin carries many titles because her capacity to respond is unlimited.  She is feminine, the “Mother of all Buddhas”, bringing the power of receptivity into your divining.  She is the receptive factor of concentration.  The capacity to receive completely What Is.

When Avalokitesvara watches, Kuan Yin listens.  Where Avalokitesvara observes experience remaining unchanged by them, Kuan Yin embraces experience in order to be changed.

The receptive factor of concentration absorbs the essence of where the attention is focused.  Think of the times when you have been enthralled by a speaker.  Due to your high level of interest, your capacity to receive what he is saying is quickened.  The interest level depends upon content.  Your capacity to receive depends upon state.  Here, they are both present fulfilling a function that allows you to listen with your Mind as well as hear with your Body’s ears.  You are the observer; you are the listener.  At any given moment, you are “either”.

While Avalokitesvara represents the state of consciousness, Kuan Yin is the content of consciousness.  He affords you the capacity to keep your attention on what the speaker is communicating; she offers permission to reflect upon the meaning of what you are hearing.  Kuan Yin provides the space for your thoughts about what you observe to come forward.  She is a magnet for like thoughts, and for thoughts that seem to be in opposition.  Kuan Yin’s gift is enabling us to realize that agreeing with the speaker is as polarizing as disagreeing.  In the face of every judgement we make, her great love shepherds us to the realization of neutrality.

Avalokitesvara is known as the Bodhisattva of Compassion.  Being in male form, he represents the initiating factor of concentration.  Compassion arises flawlessly in an entrained Mind observing What Is.  Such a one grasps Confucius’ teaching to “do not harm to others that you would not wish to befall yourself”.

This state of mind is one of neutrality, the state of “neither”.  Neutrality says,

I receive


what is before me.  I know that conditions are neutral, neither good nor bad; only my thinking makes it so.  Therefore, I suspend my judgement in the present moment, receiving completely What Is.


Avalokitesvara is this zero point state of mind where you have no thought of your own conscious making.  This state frees you from domination by the brain and its Tomb World, enabling you to “observe the sounds of the world”.  Free of impartiality, you can see the field of your experience.

When we first view the Self, a host of emotions rise to the surface from within.  These are the first waters we cross over in our journey inward.  Grasping is a way we view Self.  It arises from the polarities of ignorance.  Emptiness is the attitude for dealing with that grasping.  It removes ignorance and the waters calm, becoming still.


Communion of Kuan Yin and Avalokitesvara

We are now in the presence of the yin and yang of our existence.  “Both” has a multitude of expressions:  experience and understanding, unconscious and conscious, outer and inner, Body and Mind.  Where any two meet, a whole is created.  Perceiving Truth in your everyday life, gives the state and content of your consciousness context.  Context is the whole picture.

Where Avalokitesvara’s compassion and Kuan Yin’s love meet, perception is born.  This mental perception is the sense the mind uses to receive metaphysical experience in the worlds beyond Tomb World.
Separating from the body is the first bardo, or intermediary state, in crossing over from the physical Tomb World to the spiritual Pure Land.  Most people wait to explore this reality until they face their own mortality.  Those who explore consciousness, inviting the richness of its experience through dreams in the day and in the night, embrace this reality.

Separating from the sensory read of the outside world – eyes closed in meditation, for instance – immediately alters the brain waves because the thinker’s experience is now in the inside world, within.•