Question: What is the Buddha nature?
Answer from the Ascended Master Gautama Buddha through Kim Michaels. This answer was given at a conference in Holland in 2019.
Well, the Buddha nature that can be described in words is just a concept. You have that wonderful opening of the Tao-Te-Ching, that the Tao that can be explained this in words is not the real Tao. And the same with the Buddha nature. It is as you discussed earlier, and as we have talked about before, that enlightenment is a concept. People are in ignorance, they’re suffering. And we need to show them that there’s a way out of their suffering. So we need to give them some kind of goal and say: “This is what you can achieve when you overcome ignorance.” But as we have said, enlightenment is just a concept. And if you use the dualistic mind to formulate an elaborate idea of what enlightenment is, you are pushing enlightenment away from you because enlightenment is when you stop looking at life through the dualistic mind.
What is the Buddha nature? Well, it is a concept I have expressed in words. And the purpose of it really was to, to do several things: first of all, to say that all people have the potential to rise out of ignorance. When I gave my teaching so long ago, the fallen beings had not developed the concept of original sin. So there was no concept that you are created as flawed beings that need an external Savior. When I said that, everyone has the Buddha nature within them. It demonstrates that no matter what level of consciousness you are at on Earth, you have the potential to reconnect to the Buddha nature and therefore rise above ignorance. But more than that, the purpose was also to show people that all people have the Buddha nature within them.
And it is when you reconnect to your Buddha nature individually, that you can truly connect to someone else. And the only way to develop the Sangha of the Buddha is that you have individuals who have reconnected to the Buddha nature within themselves. And when you see it in yourself, you see it in others. And when many individuals have connected to the Buddha nature, then they can connect to each other at a higher level and achieve a higher degree of oneness. And that’s how you form the true Sangha of the Buddha, which is not really just a physical community where people live together and study the same teachings and give the same prayers.
It is a connection in consciousness, first of all. And then of course, in an even broader sense, everything is the Buddha nature, which indicates that the entire material universe sprang out of the Buddha nature, which again, helps you overcome that sense of separation, where you sense that you are separated from the material universe.
And when you feel that, you can very easily go into this trap of feeling, as I experienced myself in my younger years with the asceticism, that the physical octave, the matter universe is an enemy of your spiritual growth, and your body is an enemy of your growth and that’s why you need to put it through these extreme practices. And many spiritual people have gone into this blind alley of trying to resist living in the physical octave while they are living in the physical octave. And they think that by resisting the physical octave, they will go into the spiritual realm—into Nirvana, into enlightenment.
But you cannot go into enlightenment by resisting, because that only keeps you in duality, keeps you in ignorance, keeps you trapped in the pairs, as I expressed in the Dhammapada. When you recognize that the physical universe also is the Buddha nature, you can stop resisting it, you can embrace life, you can embrace being in a physical body, It is only by embracing the opportunity that you have in a physical body on earth, that you become free to move on from earth, because before you have fully embraced it, you cannot really move on.
Copyright © 2019 Kim Michaels