Boundless equanimity

  • Boundless Equanimity

Boundless equanimity means wishing that all sentient beings live in equanimity, free from all attachment and aversion. This  means the abandonment of all hatred and resentment, all love, along with attachment to all our close ones. This implies that there is equal affinity between all sentient beings, with love that increases and treats everybody equally. This is a mind that is very vast and includes everything, without being mixed with personal prejudice. It is the basis for the practice of compassion.

Since beginningless time, due to our ignorant and confused way of thinking, we have mistakenly believed that the self and the external world truly exist. This has given rise to our attachment and self-cherishing. We have become very skilled in developing attachment to the people and things that we like. We hate and distance ourselves from the people and things we dislike. We are indifferent to the people and things we do not know. Due to this self-cherishing attitude, we view sentient beings with very strong personal prejudice. Our mind is very narrow and has become separated from reality. Once we clearly see the disadvantages of this way of thinking, we should then do our utmost to overcome it. We need to treat every person and phenomena far and wide without any discrimination, abandoning the differentiation between those we love and those we hate. However, if we treat every sentient being whom we love, hate, or are neutral towards, without any compassion or anger, just in an indifferent, ignorant state of mind, then this is not what constitutes boundless equanimity. We should treat every being equally like the way we are hospitable towards guests, just as enlightened ones treat all guests equally, with a warm hearted reception. Boundless equanimity means to treat all sentient beings in all of space with equal loving-kindness.

This chapter is part of: Introduction Course - Part 2: Bodhichitta