Pray to your Lama and, while praying, blend your mind inseparably with your Lama’s wisdom mind. Having merged inseparably, settle in the state of naturalness, the nature of mind.
To be settled in the state of naturalness, this fresh knowing Uncontrived and unaltered, is luminous naked awareness. When thoughts arise within that nature, Recognize them on arising, and relax within that recognition. Their arising and liberation occur simultaneously, like a drawing on the water’s surface.
When thoughts do not arise, that is non-meditation free from thoughts. Emptiness, beyond meditator and object of meditation, Is called ultimate wisdom present from the beginning. Give up hope and fear; hold to the natural state of awareness.
Thoughts are delusion; stop following after them. Hope and fear are obstacles; don’t go to greet them. If you can rest within the nature that is beyond intellect and activity, You will definitely discover the dharmakaya in your own heart.
People who lack faith are deprived of the good fortune of being able to practice the Dharma, and their not having faith is therefore an immeasurable defect. Just as a rock on the bottom of the ocean will never appear on the surface, without faith it is impossible to reach the dry land of liberation. Just as a ferry without a helmsman will never reach the other shore, without faith it is impossible to traverse the great river of suffering. Without faith, it is as impossible to nurture good qualities in one’s being as it is for someone with no hands to pick up anything even if he were to find himself on an island of gold. Without faith, it is impossible for the shoot of bodhichitta to grow, for nothing can ever sprout from a burned seed. Without faith, one is like a blind person who finds himself in a temple: it is impossible to see the light of the Dharma. Without faith, however clever one is, one is trapped in the deep pit of cyclic existence: everything one does becomes an action that leads to cyclic existence, and it is impossible to ever attain the freedom of enlightenment.
As the Sutra of the Ten Qualities puts it,
“From roasted seeds no greenery will sprout.
In those who have no faith No virtue will appear.”
What are the particular characteristics of having faith?
When one has faith, one is like a fertile field, in which the shoot of bodhichitta will sprout and grow. Faith is like a great ship crossing the river of cyclic existence. It is like a reliable escort protecting us from our enemies, the afflictive emotions. Like a good mount taking us to the land of liberation. Like a wish-fulfilling jewel accomplishing everything we desire. Like a mighty hero annihilating all that is nonvirtuous. Faith is thus a sublime quality, and for this reason it is the first of the seven noble riches.
People who have faith are especially exalted, and yet they are extremely rare, as the Sutra of the Precious Lamp points out:
Faith gives birth to delight in the Buddha’s teaching,
Faith points the way to the city of happiness and excellence.
Faith banishes lack of opportunity, it is the best of all freedoms.
Faith turns one from the path of the demons,
Faith is what makes one attain Buddhahood.
Among the hosts of ordinary beings,
Rare are those who have such faith in the Dharma.