Road to Shambhala (more than just a song)
There are many legends of a mystical place in Buddhist literature about Shambhala, although there have been several historical accounts of expeditions seeking this mythical kingdom, no one has yet to glimpse where it could be. What is Shambhala? Shambhala is the place where special spiritual teachings are kept and where the forces that will overcome these invaders will emerge. In a sense, it’s a pure realm; but it’s a pure realm within the human realm. The people who live there are humans; they’re not something beyond the human level. But the question is: Is it actually a physical place that you could actually go to? And if we look in the Buddhist version of the history, nobody ever got there who tried to get there, and so the conclusion that most people come to is that it is some sort of spiritual realm rather than an actual physical location on this planet. Perhaps, just perhaps Shambhala is Nirvana.
How do we reach Nirvana, by becoming enlightened of course, but how do we go about doing that?
First we should define enlightenment. Let us say for the sake of this lesson there are two main characteristics of the human mind along a continuum. On one end of the scale we have “psychotic” which are people who have lost touch with consensual reality and live in a world of their own. At the other end of the continuum we have individuals we refer to as “enlightened”. Fully enlightened beings have perfect mental health and experience a profound sense of well-being. They have resolved all the issues of their past, have no fears for the future, and are living their lives in the present moment. Pretty much the majority of us, myself included, fall somewhere along the middle of this continuum trying to find ways to reach the goal of inner peace.
But how do we get there? By simply training the mind, over time, much like an athlete trains their body, there is no magical moment of awakening, it is simply a gradual process over time.
In the next blog I shall go more in depth the path one takes to train the mind towards inner peace and enlightenment.