The Aura of Wisdom 

By Living Buddha Sheng-yen Lu
Translated by True Buddha Foundation Translation Team (Cheng Yew Chung, Victor Hazen, Dance Smith)

This was translated from Grandmaster Lu's 154th book, 智慧的光環.

CHAPTER 48 - The Secret of Contemplating on Emptiness

I have discovered a little secret which highlights the importance of contemplating on emptiness before a Tantric practitioner begins his or her cultivation practice. As long as you still your thoughts and empty them, absorbed in this state for one split moment, the spiritual current from the Cosmic Consciousness shall empower you, flowing into your body and mind.

My personal experience on the procedure of this practice goes like this. I first imagine myself sitting on an eight-petalled lotus throne and a luminous moon disc appears before me. Following this, I recite the Contemplation of Emptiness Mantra (the Purification of Three karmas Mantra):

OM SOBHAWA SHUDDHA SARWA DHARMA SOBHAWA SHUDDHO HAM (Recite 5 times) Visualize the moon disc expanding until it is immeasurably massive. I am merged with the pure moon disc. Everything becomes emptiness.

At this moment of emptiness, the spiritual light current flows into my body and mind, filling my being, which at once responds with the eight sensations:

A tinkling sensation - The body experiences a tinkling sensation. An itchy sensation - It feels like having insects crawling all over one's body, resulting in an itchy feeling. A light sensation - The body feels as light as a moving cloud. A heavy sensation - The body weighs like an immovable mountain. A cold sensation - the body feels as cold as water, yet as refreshing as ice. A warm sensation - The body feels like it is on fire, yet it is comfortably warm. A rigid sensation - The body firms up like wooden planks. A slippery sensation - The body feels as slippery as grease.

This is why, when I say that when you cultivate one session of practice, it is as good as receiving an empowerment from the pure spiritual current of the universe. This is tantamount to having a union with the spiritual current where you merge into it and kindle an exchange and interaction with the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas.

This Contemplation of Emptiness is the first secret of Yoga Tantra.

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01 - Spiritual Conviction
02 - Vanity
03 - Adopting a Monistic Life
04 - Manifestations
05 - Spiritual Response
06 - Purification of One's Mind
07 - Right View
08 - The True Acharya
09 - Self Importance
10 - The Four Levels of Empowerment
11 - Making Offerings
12 - Making Offerings (2)
13 - Spiritual Authentication
14 - Keeping the Codes and Precepts
15 - The Spirit of Upholding the Precepts
16 - The True Buddha School
17 - True Practice
18 - Respect the Guru
19 - The Most Comprehensive System of Buddhist Practice
20 - Do Not Slander the Tantric Teachings
21 - Ignorance
22 - Liberal Authentication
23 - The Sutra and Tantra Traditions
24 - Dharma Epithet
25 - The Secret Referred to in the Secret Teachings
26 - Mahabodhicitta, the Mind of Perfect Enlightenment
27 - Perfect Penetration of the Sutra and Tantra Teachings
28 - The Mandala
29 - Attaining Budddhahood in this Very Body
30 - Refrain from Killing
31 - Taking Meat or Vegetarian Meals
32 - Offering Wine and Meat to the Buddha
33 - Why Practice Buddhism and Do Cultivation?
34 - The Guru's Power of Blessing
35 - The Precious Teachings of Tantric Buddhism
36 - The Jambhala or Wealth Deity Practice
37 - The Wrathful Guardian Deities
38 - Yab-Yum, the Consort Practice
39 - Fundamental Rationale of Tantric Buddhism
40 - The Heart Essence and the Orally Transmitted Secrets
41 - Cultivating with Contemplation and Visualization
42 - Aijikan, the Visualization of the Seed Syllable AH
43 - Choosing One`s Principal Deity (Yidam)
44 - The Fourfold and Sixfold Refuge
45 - Radiating Light Blessing
46 - Radiating Light Invocation
47 - The Importance of the Four Preliminaries
48 - The Secret of Contemplating on Emptiness
49 - Elucidation on the Three Powers
50 - Reverence for the High King Sutra
51 - A Buddha Manifestation of Great Authority
52 - Merging as One
53 - The Key Instructions of Entering, Abiding and Absorbing
54 - Seen in the Context of Heresy
55 - The Importance of Cultivating Chi