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Asanga’s Chapter on Ethics

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Ethics is the conscious practice of Esoteric Truth. In fact no other teachings would be needed than Ethics, and ethical awareness grows naturally with deepening understanding. It is the working of the divine/ spiritual Universe itself. Living in Ethics is living in harmony with Nature or the Cosmos, and oneness with God. Ethics is self-existent in buddhi – our intuition which distinguishes unfailingly between the true and the false (i.e. illusionary), but has to be explained for the human mind by means of rules and examples. The mind has created numerous misconceptions due to its ambiguity and speculative nature. Buddhi trains the mind so that we will become Buddhas.

As such, the esoteric way is no other than walking the path of Perfections in Ethics. By this alone one can reach bodhisattvahood and buddhahood. There is no faster and purer path. Skillful means of a high nature will develop naturally.

Nevertheless, those who wish to help others, guide them out of the mire of illusions and show them the way, can do so the better and quicker when they have developed skills. A doctor can heal better than a person who is merely compassionate. Therefore, practical training can be given to those who have reached perfection in Ethics.

The Chapter on Ethics by Asaṅga is perhaps the clearest and best text I have ever read on Ethics. Because of its length we give it in twelve subsequent issues, and will merge these later. It is taken from the printed translation by Mark Tatz © 1986

– Editors DTh