The idea behind this commissioned artwork is to peacefully illuminate a calligraphy of ‘Peaceful Abiding’ – ཞི་གནས་ – as if piercing through clouds of ignorance, with much space and lightness to the composition.
Created in delicate washes as watercolour pigment over the calligraphy applied with latex masking fluid. The small line of calligraphy below translates as ‘cultivating (meditating on or resting in) peace’.
The foundation of meditation is to be at peace, a practice of remaining silent, relaxed without a conceptual object.
There are in fact two primary aspects to meditation:
First and most fundamental is to be calm. This is called śamatha, in Tibetan ཞི་གནས་ – shyiné which literally translates as peacefully remaining or calm abiding.
Once well practiced with a ground of tranquillity meditation – shyiné, allows undistracted clarity – the second primary aspects to meditation called vipaśyanā, in Tibetan ལྷག་མཐོང་ – lhaktong. This translates as ‘clear seeing’ or ‘insight’ meditation.
First shamatha allows us to settle and stabilise the mind, then vipashyana allows us to gain insight into the true nature of all phenomena.
As the mind stream of thoughts are never ceasing, we need to simply rest in calm clarity, allowing the thoughts to come and go like passing clouds, with undistracted awareness, without rejecting and holding onto opinions of the thoughts, which are seen as being born out of space and dissolve back into nothingness.