Bodhicitta is the feeling and connectivity that is generated when we allow ourselves to be compassionate. There are two kinds of bodhicitta: absolute bodhicitta and relative bodhicitta.
Citta means mind and heart, your feelings of this moment. Bodhi means awake or awareness. Therefore bodhicitta is the awareness of the heart of this moment.
When we feel things that we dislike, we try to run away from them. We try to distract ourselves with rationalizations or diversions. Bodhicitta is staying with the feelings that you dislike. Allowing them to be there without running away, you will discover how they change.
Relating to the moment with openness is relative bodhcitta. It means practicing mindfulness and acceptance in this moment, every moment.
Absolute bodhicitta is cultivated through meditation. Absolute bodhicitta is the underlying emptiness of all things that thrums with the love of existence. It is groundlessness and freedom and openness, like a vast sky. By engaging in meditation, you grow to connect with your own nature as being of absolute bodhicitta.
By bringing that flash of absolute bodhicitta into the moment during times of hardship, you create enough space to practice relative bodhicitta mindfulness.
This is the practice of tonglen.
Most of all, bodhicitta is something you discover in your own way through your own experience. Words help to give the impression but it is you who must awaken yourself to your genuine heart.
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