Before completing my training in Mexico at the end of last year, Sahajananda (the main founder of Hridaya Yoga) affirmed the importance of perseverance. Below we have a short story about Milarepa and his foremost disciple, Gampopa where a similar message was conveyed. I have included a few more quotes as well, to consolidate this essential attitude for any spiritual aspirant.
One day, Milarepa warned Gampopa that the time had come for him to depart.
He told Gampopa, “You have received the entire transmission. I have given you all the teachings, as if pouring water from one vase into another. Only 1 pith instruction remains that I haven’t taught you. It’s very secret.”
He then accompanied Gampopa to a river, where they were to part. Gampopa made prostrations to take his leave and started across. But Milarepa called him back: “You are a really good disciple. Anyway I will give you this last teaching.”
Overjoyed, Gampopa prostrated 9 times, then waited for the instructions. Milarepa proceeded to turn around, pull up his robe, showing Gampopa his bottom. “Do you see?”
And Gampopa said, “Uh…yes…”
“Do you really see?”
Gampopa was not sure what he was supposed to see. Milarepa had calluses on his buttocks; they looked as though they were half flesh and half stone.
“You see, this is how I reached enlightenment: sitting and meditating. If you want to reach it in this life, make the same effort. This is my final teaching. I have nothing more to add.”
His buttocks have been an inspiration against my own self-cherishing ego ever since.
His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama
Never give up.
No matter what is going on, never give up.
Develop the heart.
Too much energy in your country is spent developing the mind instead of the heart.
Not just to your friends, but to everyone.
Work for peace; in your heart and in the world.
Work for peace, and I say again, never give up.
No matter what is going on around you…
NEVER give up.
A.A. Milne, Winnie-The-Pooh
‘Rivers know this: There is no hurry. We shall get there some day.’
‘Do not entertain hopes for realisation, but practice all your life.’