“Did you ever wonder about supernatural powers,” Sarva asked? We’re on a Monday morning 15K walk. Sarva always does long walks on Monday mornings and he typically does Dharma talks as we travel through the beach towns along the promenade. He continued, “While we sit in meditation, practice walking meditation, and at every opportunity when we train our mind to be fully present we are using supernatural powers. The untrained mind naturally wanders through its pretending and make believe worlds. It may busy itself with repetitive song, or playing out some conversation that never happened — but practices over and over again to be ready just in case our spouse ever tees it up. Over the first several years of Mahayana meditation practice we learn many techniques to help us train the mind to leave it’s pretend world to instead be part of reality. Each time you bring your mind back to reality you are performing a supernatural power.
Power is cool
The definition of supernatural power according to wikipedia, ‘Powers that are supernatural, relating to, or being above or beyond what is natural; unexplainable by natural law or phenomena; abnormal.’ As such, the normal state of mind is untrained, and undisciplined. The normal mind daydreams, ruminates, and spends all of its energy in a world of make believe. Our continuous efforts to stop the mind from these normal activities, is by definition, the practice and development of supernatural powers. I’m not trying to be funny or to make a play on words. I’m quite serious, what you and I are doing in the practice is learning to use supernatural powers. This should not be taken lightly and you have to take responsibility for the Karma because it is yours.”
Walks with Sarva
Sarva is always upbeat and even when the Dharma talk gets heavy, as this one is, there is always a smile. Also, the generous laugh here and there through the talk helps to keep a sense of gratitude for the learning. Mysticism is the last vesel for talks of the supernatural. Even religions, once steeped in the supernatural have dropped the emphasis on these states of mind. Sarva has a way of adding the science to the Dharma and the talks always provide the means to make the wisdom self evident. If you can see it for yourself it’s always more believable. I do see these supernatural powers myself. I’m constantly catching my mind wandering off in thoughts. It loves to go over the same story lines again and again, the past, the future, the what-ifs, etc. Before you know it, 20 minutes, even half the day can be spent in these make believe, pretend world and the present moment has been totally ignored. Then again, on the best days, when my supernatural or magical powers are strong, I catch the mind drifting and bring it back to “just this.” No thinking or concentrated thinking. Abracadabra… Poof! I alter the natural state of the mind.