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Cutting Away the Old

by Abhaya

Another strong talk by Abhaya. Swords - lots of swords - as he explores the deep significance of Manjughosha/Manjushri and the blade he uses to cut deep into ignorance and the suffering it leads us into. Zorro makes an appearance, and so does Gandalf! Then there's Plotinus, Michelangelo, and a whole host of cultural and artistic reference points to inspire us to pick up our subtle spiritual weapons and go fight some demons... Sparkling stuff in places, and pretty funny too.

Talk given at Padmaloka Retreat Centre, 2003

Please note that some small noise artefacts can be heard occasionally on this talk due to a poor original recording.

Tracks (click play to listen)

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1. Manjughosha's (Manjushri's) book and sword; Zorro; sword fights in films; Excalibur; visualizing the symbols; the jewelled hilt (6:33) 
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2. Cutting away and revealing; eternal youth - the golden light; destruction and creation - the subtle knife and new worlds; things that hold us back (4:50) 
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3. The Lord of the Rings - Theoden, King of the Golden Hall; Gandalf's Staff; removing the effects of the reactive mind; quelling the demon (6:07) 
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4. A magic sword; quote from 'The Flower Ornament Scripture' - Entering the Realm of Reality; Bodhichitta as higher nature; decapitation; resentment - quote from Hamlet; cutting off the sprout (6:56) 
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5. Armour - conceit and ignorance; razor sharp, white hot; compulsive propensities; vigilance at the gates of the mind (6:08) 
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6. The spiritual friend as surgeon; klesha and jneya - two 'veils' (varanas) or 'afflictions', emotional and cognitive; a demon in meditation (5:13) 
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7. Keeping the sword to hand; sword as spade; the treasure of Manjughosha (3:49) 
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8. Plotinus and Neoplatonism; sword as chisel - removing what conceals; sculpture as metaphor; going to Florence - Hitler's watercolours (4:45) 
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9. Michelangelo's 'Four Prisoners' - 'The Youthful Prisoner'; 'Atlantis' - Atlas and Perseus; being turned to stone; the old as the way we define ourselves (3:40) 
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10. Being stale; a flow of becoming; work in progress - the eternal quest (3:21) 


Total running time: 51:22