Diamond Like Vision

– Lama Surya Das, Awakening the Buddha Within

“Develop a mind that clings to nothing” is a meditative maxim that comes from the Diamond Sutra, one of the wisdom scriptures of Mahayana Buddhism. The original Sanskrit name for this sutra refers to the diamond that can cut anything but cannot itself be cut. In this case, the word “diamond” refers to the keen discriminating edge of penetrating wisdom.

A large part of clear vision and diamond like wisdom is seeing everything exactly as it is with all its magical but ephemeral beauty. The wise mind understands the limits in hanging on to that which is transient and dreamlike. The awakened mind is free flowing, natural, and well rounded. It’s like Teflon – nothing sticks. On the other hand, the unawakened, ordinary mind is rigid, limited, and sticky like fly paper; the ordinary mind has corners and sharp jagged edges on which ideas get caught, hanging us up. Dualistic thinking is like Velcro; it takes two to tangle. Unitary vision is more like a crystal though which all forms of light can pass unimpeded.

In life this is played out when we find it difficult to shake off our thoughts or worries, as well as unable to get off our fixed positions and entrenched opinions. Even insignificant emotional memories don’t roll off; instead they get attached and stuck; sometimes they fester and rot in place. The unawakened mind tries to grasp and hold on to emotions and things, which by their very nature are fleeting; it’s like trying to grasp water between your hands.

If we understand that the cause of suffering and dissatisfaction is attachment, then it’s obvious that the remedy is simply letting go. This is an absolutely essential ingredient in the Buddhist recipe for wisdom and enlightenment. Why are we afraid to let go and let the natural mind just be as it is, radiant, free, and aware? Why do we hold on to the past and resist the fresh current of newness? Neurotic behavior is sometimes defined as a frozen pattern. It’s very therapeutic to thaw our frozen patterns and develop spontaneity and awareness of “what is” and the joy of the present moment. If you cling to nothing, you can handle anything. This is wisdom. Try to grasp this but lightly.

Let your mind flow, free from attachment to your belongings, ideas, agendas, schedule, passions – your very self identity, and develop the wisdom, self-detachment, and equanimity that realizes that all things are essentially equal. Each of us is unique, but we are not especially special; we are all interconnected notes in the same cosmic symphony. We may be differently shaped clay pots, but we are all made from the same mortal clay. Develop a god’s eye view and appreciate the wisdom of clear vision.


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