Joanna Macy Talks about The Kingdom of Shambhala

In this lovely video, Joanna Macy talks about The Kingdom of Shambhala as related to her by Choegyal Rinpoche from the Kalachakra Tantra. This talk was recorded at Spirit Rock Meditation Center on January 28, 2014.

The teaching she is talking about is the emergence of the Kingdom of Shambhala. She talks about the Shambhala warriors, which she says is a metaphor for the bhodhisattva. The teaching goes like this:

There comes a time when all life on Earth is in danger. In this time great powers have arisen – Barbarian powers and although they waste their wealth and preparations to annihilate each other they have much in common. And among the things they have in common are weapons of unfathomable death and devastation, and technologies that lay waste the world. And it is just in this time when the future of all beings seems to hang by the frailest of threads that the Kingdom Shambhala emerges.

Now you can’t go there because it’s not a place. It exists in the hearts and minds have the Shambhala warriors. And actually you can’t tell us Shambhala warrior by looking at her are him because there are no uniforms, no insignia, no banners to declare what side you are on. No barricades behind which you can rest and regroup, or stand to threaten the enemy. Not even any home turf because always and ever you just have the terrain of the Barbarian powers to move across.

Now the time has come he said when great courage is required of the  Shambhala warriors – moral courage and physical courage – because they’re going to be going into is the very center on the Barbarian powers to dismantle their web.

All the dangers and weapons of the Barbarians are mind-made, so they can be destroyed by the mind. Now is the time for the Shambhala warriors to go into training. The weapons are compassion and the radical insight of interbeing, the radical insight of the interdependence of all phenomena.

Normally, we hear about the interplay of wisdom and compassion when it comes to the teachings of Tibetan Buddhism. But this time the wisdom part is in the insight of interbeing, which, in itself, is quite powerful.

If you are reading this, you probably are a Shambhala warrior. You practice compassion and you have experienced the insight of interbeing. Now, how will you proceed to disarm the Barbarians?

Books by Joanna Macy

Active Hope: How to Face the Mess We’re in without Going Crazy

Joanna Macy
Chris Johnstone

The challenges we face can be difficult even to think about. Climate change, the depletion of oil, economic upheaval, and mass extinction together create a planetary emergency of overwhelming proportions. Active Hope shows us how to strengthen our capacity to face this crisis so that we … [Read More…]

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