There Is No Suffering 43

We can also speak of the suffering caused by the five skandhas, in that they are the matrix of suffering. In other words, as long as we are comprised of the skandhas (have a body and a mind), and are not liberated, we will suffer, life after life. However, if we can directly perceive the emptiness of the skandhas, we also perceive the emptiness of suffering. This is wisdom.

When suffering is transcended does danger still exist? There are numerous stories from the Jatakas,24 about shakyamuni’s previous incarnations as a bodhisattva. He often sacrificed his life for the sake of other beings, or to learn the Dharma. In none of these stories did he consider such actions to be dangerous or a cause of suffering.

For one who sees the emptiness of the five skandhas, there is no danger or suffering. It does not mean that there is no body, no environment, and no pains. That is why I tell you to forget your bodies when you meditate. If you can forget your discomfort, you will have fewer vexations. If you can give up creating afflictions in your mind, it would even be better! But it is a step-by-step process. The body comes first because it is easier to deal with, after which comes the mind. It is good practice when you can see your problems as illusions. You may not become enlightened, but you will certainly experience dhyana joy and Dharma happiness.