HOW TO GROW A LOTUS BLOSSOM: Reflections in a Disciple's Life

by Rev. Koshin Schomberg

Section XII
Tools for the Journey

Now you must set to work on the meritorious practice of meditation
And carefully, diligently and full of attention
Entrust yourself to the Imperial Mother.


Everything Given

In the course of my retreat in 1998-99, I was shown again and again that everything that I would need would be provided by the Eternal.

And this was how it went. When deep meditation was needed, I was drawn within. When guidance was needed, teaching was given. When human help was needed, human help was available.

In the first days of the retreat, I was given teaching that helped me as I crawled, and then walked, through a great spiritual darkness.

Nothing Matters

The following excerpt from my diary is dated May 26, 1998, the fourth day of the retreat:

"As I meditated mid-morning, a flood of darkness arose. The words came into my mind, "Just be led." I let the darkness fill me. Then came the words, "Nothing matters." It was like being slammed against a great wall of polished black marble, and then sliding slowly down it spread-eagled. There was neither love nor lack of love, neither need nor desire. It was very still. Then I knew that He is present even in the darkest place. Gradually the meditation brightened. Yet that dark wall can be returned to; it is the place of complete surrender."

"Nothing Matters" can also be expressed as "Let go of externals and hold fast to the Eternal." This is the full religious meaning of meditation. In this experience I was being given the essential principle of training that I would need to return to again and again in the difficult months to come.

The teaching "Nothing Matters" was given to Rev. Master at the gateway to the most difficult part of her great retreat and kensho in 1976 (Plates V-IX; first edition, Plate V of How to Grow a Lotus Blossom). It was given to me in a different form as I entered the most difficult months of my life. This teaching is not just for Rev. Master or for me. It is for all who need it.

Trust the Process

Later the same morning I was given the experience of the process of conversion that would be happening during the retreat. I believe that I was given such a clear experience of it at this point so that I would understand that even in the darkest and most difficult times, the essential spiritual work is taking place. I would not always see this clearly. I would need to trust the process. Here is an excerpt from my diary describing that experience:

"[Later] the Water of the Spirit was thrilling in my body. The words came into my mind, "He is all of me." This was accompanied by deep gratitude. My hara [roughly, the abdominal area] felt full, round and golden. I felt that darkness in the lower hara was rising into the upper hara, changing to golden Light, and then streaming up and out. This afternoon I had peaceful meditations with a sense of lightness and brightness."

The Zero Reset Button

Whenever I put gas in my car, I press the little button on the odometer that resets the odometer to "zero." I came to think of the choice to return to the "Nothing Matters," letting go of worries about externals and looking up in trust, as "pressing the zero reset button."

No matter how many "spiritual miles" have been logged, at any point we can press the spiritual zero reset button and return to pure meditation.--Stepping into the unknown one step at a time; leaving the past behind, even the past of one moment ago; not looking to the future; not clinging to the present; allowing everything to dissolve away from moment to moment; looking up, trusting the Lord of the House.


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