Thoughts are such strange things. Perhaps it’s my own leanings towards the material world, but thoughts seem like almost nothing. Yet, they are so subversive. They put things in motion that will hold us tighter than a vise. All from something no more substantial than smoke.
And if we change a thought around, so much becomes unstuck. Think about the example of “I’m sorry.” We feel so different once we stop rationalizing and just say, “I’m sorry.”
This is also why there’s so much power when we give rise to a positive intention, a positive thought, and entrust it inwardly to our foundation. Now that harmonious energy begins working in the same way. This also applies to finding our own direction, overcoming hardships, and learning what we need to do, as well as any type of investigation or growth.
And, what we can do for ourselves, we can also do for other people. There are some limitations to this because you can’t overrule another person’s own path, and it needs to connect with your foundation. You can, however, give them light and warmth and energy to help find their own way.
When we raise a thought for someone’s well-being, and entrust that to our foundation, that underlying intention never disappears and is never used up. This is different from helping people through material things. This is the unconditional love that Bodhisattvas have for all beings. This mind is the compassion that rises when all beings and myself are one, when the suffering of others is my suffering. This is the power that leads us to the truth.
— Daehaeng Kun Sunim, No River to Cross, page 34