Minds, minds, minds-they represent the whole of life and human history. It is the mind that creates individual destinies of fortune and misfortune, calamity and happiness, and it is the mind that creates the world’s history of rising and falling, prosperity and decline. The mind has been the protagonist of the history of human civilization, of everything save the events of nature. Even the materialist and scientific perspectives that reject the existence of the mind are its products. If there is a creator behind the phenomena of nature, then it is the mind that has produced all the phenomena of human civilization.
Yet we human beings are wanting not only in our understanding of the mind but also in our efforts to delve deeply into it. Our attention to the mind is sadly lacking.
Reams of scholarship have been devoted to the various objective things existing in this world. People specialize in their different areas, which have become further and further specialized to allow for a closer approach. Study of and attention to the subjective mind, however, is not only minimal but forever prone to being neglected. And with the arrival of a materialistic society in recent years, the situation can only be said to be growing ever more serious.
The only fields of scholarship that focus on the mind today are psychology and epistemology (which focus on knowledge among philosophy’s three core issues of existence, knowledge, and values), along with the study of the Way in the East. And even these fields now find themselves off in a lonely corner, struggling against the pressures of materialistic thought.
My response to this is the book that you are holding now, a kind of “commentary on the mind” that arose from an acute sense of the need nay, desperate urgency-for knowledge of the mind, for understanding and managing it for what it is. I hope that it may offer at least a small light in the darkness for a mind-world that is becoming ever more bruised and battered.
These days, we can see the effects of mind-practice everywhere in educational institutions, workplaces, and families, and this in spite of the fact that its use is still very basic and untested. If a more concrete approach can be developed and adopted widely, this will be a great cause for celebration for the future of ourselves and the worlds.
The books consists of three sections.
Part One includes an articulation of the principles of the mind. In it, I give an introduction to the mind and describe its aspects, contents, and scope
Part Two offers a description of the principles of cultivation. In it, I pose the question (hwadu) of what kind of object the mind is and present issues for our cultivation to discipline the mind.
Part Three focuses on practical matters in our cultivation. In it, I discuss the way in which we plan our cultivation, our vow and repentance for the sake of cultivation, our mindfulness and one-mindedness, things that hinder our cultivation, our cultivation diaries, and the stages of practice.
I have also appended reference materials to aid our cultivation.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chwasan previously served as the fourth Prime Dharma Master of Won Buddhism. He is a practical seeker of truth, using the wisdom attained through mind-practice as a basis for providing specific solutions on everything from matters of persona l health to politics, business, and everyday living. Having suffered the loss of half his liver from cirrhosis in his twenties and developed diabetes in his forties, Chwasan has been at the crossroads of life and death on numerous occasions. Today, however, he remains as healthy in his late seventies as a man in his forties or fifties, thanks to rules of good health obtained through mind cultivation and Sasang typology. Since stepping down as Prime Dharma Master in 2006, he has lived on the foothills of Mt. Mireuksan in Iksan, North Jeolla Province, practicing and exerting himself based on three vows: world peace, reunification of South and North Korea, and healing the mind of the modern individual.
Part I. Principles of the Mind
Chapter 1. Introduction to the Mind
The Principles of the Mind
The Reality of the Neglected Mind
The Works of the Mind
Chapter 2. Aspects of the Mind
The Mind’s Ordinary Aspect
The Mind’s Linear Aspect
The Mind’s Planar Aspect
The Mind’s Solid Aspect
The Content of the Mind
The Mind’s Root and Base, Stem and Branches
Chapter 3. The Mind’s Content and Scope
Truth, Nature, Knowledge, Feeling, Intention, and More
Spirit, Energy, Substance, and the Mind
Principles of the Soul and Body
The Mind and the Workings of Cause and Effect
The Mind, Karma, and Samsara
The Mind and Paths of Progression and Regression
The Mind and Self-Cultivation, Household Affairs,
Governing Countries, and Keeping the World in Peace
The Mind and Health
Defilements and Supreme Enlightenment
Part II. Principles of Cultivation
Chapter 4. What Kind of Object Is the Mind?
Something to Be Sought
Something to Be Guarded
Something to Be Illuminated
Something .to Be Straightened
Something to Be Tamed
Something to Be Cultivated
Something to Be Filled
Something to Be Harnessed
Something to Be Purified
Something to Be Emptied
Chapter 5. Practice to Cultivate the Mind
Reason and Practice
The Possibilities of Mind Cultivation
The Mind and Sensory Conditions
The Resources of Mind-Practice
Threefold Study: The Three Elements of the Mind’s Life
Nine Paths for Daily Cultivation
The Quickest Expedient to Attain the Three Great Powers in Action and Rest
Overcoming Difficult Hurdles
Part III. The Reality of Cultivation
Chapter 6. Our Cultivation Plan
Chapter 7. Our Vow and Repentance
Our Vow and Repentance
Chapter 8. Mindfulness and One-Mindedness
Mindfulness and One-Mindedness
Chapter 9. What Stops Us from Reaching the Realm of True Cultivation
What Stops Us from Reaching the Realm of True Cultivation
Chapter 10. Our Cultivation Diaries
Our Cultivation Diaries
The Dharma of Daily Diary-Keeping
The Dharma of Fixed-Term Diaπ-Keeping
Chapter 11. The Stages of Mind-Practice
The Four Stages of the Mind
The Three Grades and Three Statuses
The Equation of the Unequaled Realm
The Six Stages of Practice with the Il-Won-Sang Transmission Verse
The Pinnacle of Practice
A Final Word
The Dharma of Seated Meditation in The Principal Book of Won-Buddhism
Stages and Standards for Major Areas
Stages of the Threefold Study by Dharma Rank
Dharma and Standards of Status Examination