16:Check your progress


This chapter is a questionnaire to test our progress. This will tell us where we stand and where we lack in attaining Nirvana. This is similar to the Graduation system  in chapter 10. In Graduation System we observed our progress step by step. The system is simple and very easy to follow and understand. In this chapter we check our progress in parallel in all the levels discussed in Graduation System. We can observe that the Noble Eight Fold path has eight aspects to a single path and all the aspects are followed in parallel to attain Nirvana. So, those who have thought that ten years to Nirvana mentioned in Graduation System is very difficult or impossible should reconsider it to a far lesser time with proper discipline, understanding and guidance.

So, let us check our progress. Most of the answers are expected in affirmative.

  • Are you free from greed?         Y/N
  • Are you free from anger?         Y/N
  • Are you free from delusion?    Y/N
  • Where do you place yourself in the world system? (You can place yourself in more than one world that dominate most of your life) Gods / Titans/ Human / Animal / Hungry Ghosts / Hell
  • Are you aware of your actions? Y/N
  • Are you aware of your thoughts? Y/N
    • If yes, then Are you able to subdue unhealthy thoughts and develop good thoughts? Y/N
  • Are you aware when your senses have contact with its corresponding objects? Y/N
  • Are you able to control your thoughts that flow when there is sense contact with its sense object? Y/N
  • Are you aware of the impermanence of events, objects around you when you interact with them? Y/N
  • Are you aware of anatta (no permanent soul) when you refer to yourself or think of yourself? Y/N
  • Are you aware of Dukkha associated with attaching to the concept of self and thinking of things as permanent when in fact they are impermanent? Y/N
  • Do you accept the concept of Karma and believe in it? Y/N
  • Do you accept the concept of rebirth? Y/N
  • Do you accept the concept of Dependant Origination? Y/N
  • Do you understand what Nirvana is? Y/N
  • Do you want to attain Nirvana? Y/N
  • If yes,
    • Do you  want to be a monk? Y/N
    • Do you want to remain a layman and enjoy sense pleasures? Y/N
    • Do you want to remain a layman but want to be strict like a monk? Y/N
  • If No, do you want to just be free of Dukkha, but do not want any of the above choices? Y/N
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15: FAQs


  • You are trying to modify the original teachings?

No. The Buddha’s teachings are the same and you can refer any other sources to verify the teachings. We are only trying to make the teachings easy for practice in daily life. This may not be very helpful to Buddhist monks as they already follow the Eight Fold Path and know the Dhamma right. Buddha taught the same teachings to both Monks and Ordinary people, but only making it strict for the monks to follow the teachings, and as guide for ordinary people to reduce their suffering.

  • It is not practical to follow the precepts in our daily life.

You are definitely right. But when are we aware that what we are doing is practical or not. If it is practical to avoid doing an act do we actually avoid it. And it is always practical to follow the precepts in our thoughts. But still we think of killing, stealing, lying, smoking, drinking , etc. Buddha’s teachings were for eradication of sufferings. If we can avoid even one of our evil actions, we our sufferings are reduced to that extent. If we can avoid all our evil action and do good actions on understanding the real nature of sufferings, we will eradicate all sufferings from our life.

  • I do not believe in the different worlds and the chart is mythical.

You do not have to believe in the different worlds for the chart to be practical. There is no doubt that people fall down (are ashamed, disrespected, hated, ignored) engrossed with ignorance, lust and anger and others rise up (are loved, respected) freed from ignorance, lust and anger. Some people like hungry ghosts keep lusting after things and thirst is not quenched even after getting. Some are already wealthy and have power and still fight for more power and wealth for showing their status. Some are content. There should also be no doubt on the twelve links as they are straight forward.

  • I have a different idea, which can make following the Eight Fold path much easier.

You can follow any idea or technique that suits you. You can also share it with others on our website. Our idea of using the palm is that whenever we look at the palm we are reminded of the Eight Fold path and the Dependant Origination. The images are made such that you can easily associate and remember what part of your palm depicts what teaching.

  • Will I really attain nirvana?

Ans. Definitely yes. If it were not possible, then Buddha would not have taught it. Also if it was not possible, there would not have been so many Buddhists and so many opting to become monks leaving a pleasurable layman’s life.

  • Is there anyone now I can meet who has attained Nirvana?

Ans. There are many monks who have attained Nirvana. But usually no monk speaks of the level of progress they have made, which can lead to false pride. Also there are many sadhus & yogis in India who have got Moksha – Nirvana in Buddhist context, only that their values, principles and path differ from Buddhism.

  • It is very difficult to follow the Eight fold path and to meditate. I also loose interest and do not follow it most of the time.

Ans. It all depends upon the effort one puts on following the path. Putting too much effort gets one disappointed and looses faith. Putting too little effort doesn’t take one anywhere and he too looses faith. One should put right effort enough to remain on the path till one attains Nirvana.

  • Where should I find a guide or right Buddhist teacher?

Ans. No one is perfect until he has achieved Nirvana. But expect every monk to be a right teacher as they are very strict in following the rules of the monastery and usually know the teachings right. Other than monks, those people who are practicing Buddhism should provide you with the necessary teachings of Buddha, practicing meditation, providing guidance, etc. There are lots of books on Buddhism and some of them are even for free distribution that you can refer. Also the internet is full of references on every topic you have doubt for. This website may not be the best reference for the teachings of the Buddha, but it definitely is very good reference for practising and practical way of attaining Nirvana in today’s lifestyle.

14 : Matrix Analogy Revolutions


Unfortunately, no one can be told what the Matrix is. You have to see it for yourself.

–Morpheus


Matrix Analogy | Matrix Analogy Reloaded | Matrix Analogy Revolutions


  • Sati: This is the train station. Neo: This isn’t the Matrix? Sati: That’s where the Train goes. Rama-Kandra: This place is nowhere. It is between your world and our world. . Oracle: He’s trapped in a place between this world and the machine world.

 The Trainman refers to mara and the train station/machine world refers to the intermediate period between one birth and another. One can be reborn immediately or in an indefinite period.

  • Oracle: I expect just what I’ve always expected. For you to make up your own damn mind. Believe me or don’t.

This is as Buddha had said about any religion including Buddhism – Do not believe any religion because someone said so or everyone believes so. Make up your own mind only after studying and analyzing it properly.

  •  Neo: You’re programs. Rama-Kandra: Oh, yes. I’m the power plant systems manager for recycling operations. My wife is an interactive software programmer, she is highly creative.

There is no difference between humans and programs in the matrix. Similarly there are 31 planes of existence. But we are accustomed to just the world of form/physical bodies.

  • Rama-Kandra: That is our karma. Neo: You believe in karma? Rama-Kandra: Karma’s a word. Like ‘love.’ A way of saying ‘what I am here to do.’ I do not resent my karma- I’m grateful for it. Grateful for my wonderful wife, for my beautiful daughter.

It is about the Law of Karma.

  • (Hel Club elevator) Seraph: There are no weapons allowed in the club. (Hel Club entrance) Coat Check Girl: Can I take your… oh my God. {Hel Club shootout} (Hel Club – VIP lounge) Merovingian: .. you have fought through hell to do so, yes?

It is about one of the different planes of existence – Hell.

  •  Merovingian: ..she has the good manners to learn her lesson, and to remember that there is no action without consequence. Merovingian: I have told you before, there’s no escaping the nature of the universe. ..Where some see coincidence, I see consequence.

The Law of dependent origination.

  • Merovingian: It is remarkable how similar the pattern of love is to the pattern of insanity.

Both are Emotions gone to extreme born out of attachment. The link in law of dependent origination.

  • Morpheus: Can’t you see him? Link: No, sir. We were reading something but I couldn’t tell what it was. Neo: I can’t leave yet.

Can’t leave the current planes of existence due to unfinished task.

  • Oracle: Cookies need love like everything does.

Metta an emotion of love towards all beings alike, an unconditional love.

  • Oracle: So, do you recognize me? Neo: A part of you. Oracle: Yeah, that’s how it works. Some bits you lose, some bits you keep. I don’t yet recognize my face in the mirror, but… I still love candy.

Anatta – Impermanence. One of the three universal truth, that every thing is in a state of flux, ever changing, including us.

  • Neo: Then why didn’t you tell me about the Architect? Why didn’t you tell me about Zion, the Ones before me – why didn’t you tell me the truth? Oracle: Because it wasn’t time for you to know. Neo: Who decided it wasn’t time? Oracle: You know who. *She points at the Temet Nosce sign above the door* Neo: I did.

Buddha was particular when to teach the truth he learned and to whom. The truth should be told only at the appropriate time, when the listener is ready.

  • Neo: Tell me how I separated my mind from my body without jacking in. Tell me how I stopped four sentinels by thinking it. Tell me just what the hell is happening to me. Oracle: The power of the One extends beyond this world. It reaches from here all the way back to where it came from. Neo: Where? Oracle: The Source. That’s what you felt when you touched those Sentinels. But you weren’t ready for it.

The abilities of a Buddha far extend beyond the abilities of a normal man and even more than an enlightened man – Arahat (One who has attained Nirvana). A Buddha is the one who has perfected himself birth after birth avoiding Nirvana to attain the supreme perfection.

  • Oracle: Please… You and I may not be able to see beyond our own choices, but that man can’t see past any choices. Neo: Why not? Oracle: He doesn’t understand them -he can’t. To him they are variables in an equation. One at a time each variable must be solved and countered. That’s his purpose: to balance an equation.

It is about God – The Architect. He made this universe and living beings and all the laws, but leaves the choices to living beings. In Buddhism, the God is not considered the creator of the universe. The universe already exist with all it’s laws like Newton’s laws. Gods and all beings exist in one of the 31 planes of existence, all governed by the laws of the universe.

  • Oracle: Everything that has a beginning has an end.

Anatta – Impermanence, One of the universal truth

  • Oracle: Very soon he’s going to have the power to destroy this world, but I believe he won’t stop there; he can’t. He won’t stop until there’s nothing left at all. Neo: What is he? Oracle: He is you. Your opposite, your negative, the result of the equation trying to balance itself out.

We learn evil easily and we don’t stop, we can’t. The good and evil (opposites) exist within us. We need to develop and maintain good intentions and actions consciously, and evil intentions and actions need to be subdued and kept out consciously.

  • Roland: You’ll never make it. hundred years no ship has gone within a hundred kilometers of it, you’ll never make it. Neo: I have to try. Morpheus: Is this what the Oracle told you? Neo: No.

Buddha before attaining Nirvana, had left home in search of the truth – to find an end to suffering in life. He found many teachers but none could lead him to the answer. So he went on his own way to find the end to suffering – Nirvana.

  • Neo: Trinity… There’s something I have to say. Something you need to understand. I know I’m supposed to go. But beyond that – I don’t know…

This is probably what Buddha had thought before leaving his wife and new born child in search of Nirvana.

  • (Logos: main deck) Bane: Mr. Anderson. I see you’re as predictable in this world as you are in the other.

Nature of existence in all planes of existence remains the same.

  • Bane: Still don’t recognize me? I admit, it is difficult to think, encased in this rotting piece of meat. The stink of it filling every breath, a suffocating cloud you can’t escape.*spits blood* Disgusting! Look at how pathetically fragile it is. Nothing this weak is meant to survive.

We must realize that our body is full of disgust – blood, urine, skin, hair, nails, saliva, puss, etc. After death the body is rotten and infested with worms. Contemplation on the disgusting nature of body and contemplation on death are an important form of meditation practised in Buddhism to develop detachment from body/physical form.

  • Neo: Over there. There’s our path. Can you see it? Three lines. Trinity: Power lines. Neo: Follow them.

The eight fold path, leading to Nirvana, divided into 3 sections – sila (morality), samadhi (mental culture), panna (wisdom).

  •  Smith/Oracle: I really should thank you for it, after all, it was your life that taught me the purpose of all life. The purpose of life is to end.

Everything has an end including life – Impermanence – Anatta.

  •  Smith/Oracle: Why, Mr. Anderson, why? Why, why do you do it? Why, why get up? Why keep fighting? Do you believe you’re fighting for something, for more than your survival? Can you tell me what it is, do you even know? Is it freedom or truth, perhaps peace – could it be for love? Illusions, Mr. Anderson, vagaries of perception. Temporary constructs of a feeble human intellect trying desperately to justify an existence that is without meaning or purpose. And all of them as artificial as the Matrix itself. Although, only a human mind could invent something as insipid as love. You must be able to see it, Mr. Anderson, you must know it by now! You can’t win, it’s pointless to keep fighting! Why, Mr. Anderson, why, why do you persist? Neo: Because I choose to.

Something more than survival, Nirvana. Illusions of perception borne out of limited senses. Our existence is as artificial as the matrix. You can choose to stay with the illusions of (im)permanent world, walk the path towards Nirvana.

  •  Smith/Oracle: Wait… I’ve seen this. This is it, this is the end. … I’m supposed to say something.I say… Everything that has a beginning has an end, Neo.

Matrix Analogy | Matrix Analogy Reloaded | Matrix Analogy Revolutions


13: Matrix Analogy Reloaded


Unfortunately, no one can be told what the Matrix is. You have to see it for yourself.

–Morpheus


Matrix Analogy | Matrix Analogy Reloaded | Matrix Analogy Revolutions


  • Wurm: How did you know someone was here?
  • Link: He’s doing his Superman thing.
  • Trinity: How does he always know?

These are some of the powers of the One – Neo that he gains through understanding of the Matrix. These are also some of the powers that are gained through meditation. These are usually distractions from the goal of Nirvana. You will observe that Neo shows no pride for these powers and they are never used unless necessary.

  • Neo: I told you, Kid, you found me, I didn’t find you… You saved yourself.

 

Here you can see that a person is responsible for his own karma and only by his own effort can a person be liberated from his suffering. No one, not even a Buddha, can liberate anyone from his suffering unless he puts his own efforts.

  • Councillor Hamann: I suppose we do, but down here sometimes I think about all those people still plugged into the Matrix.

Councillor Hamann who has speaks of all the people still suffering engrossed (plugged) in the world of samsara.

  • The Oracle: He’s being held prisoner by a very dangerous program one of the oldest of us. He is called the Merovingian, and he will not let him go willingly.

Neo: What does he want?

The  Oracle: What do all men with power want? More power.

Titans are one of the oldest from the world systems. Humans appeared later have limited life span. They have power but still want more power and fight amongst themselves and even with the Gods for power.

  • Merovingian: You see, there is only one constant, one universal, it is the only real truth: causality. Action. Reaction. Cause and effect.

About Dependent Origination. Cause and effect leading to the never ending cycle of samsara.

  • Merovingian: Causality. There is no escape from it, we are forever slaves to it. Our only hope, our only peace is to understand it, to understand the `why.’ …. Another link in the chain.

Causality – Cause and effect – Dependent Origination – There is no escape from it. Only hope is to understand ‘why’ we suffer, why can’t the chain of dependent origination be broken easily, By Understanding the ‘why’ of suffering we remove our ignorance regarding dukkha, impermance and ‘anatta’ and can break the link in the chain.

  • This level is filled with doors. These doors lead to many places, hidden places, but one door is special. One door leads to the Source. This building is protected by a very secure system.

Keymaker: But like all systems it has a weakness. The system is   based on the rules of a building. One system built on another.

The door to Nirvana leads to the source, to liberation from suffering, to the disintegration into the component parts that of earth, water, fire and air and the five skandas of feelings, consciousness, thought, contact, etc. System is built one system on another, body on mind, mind on body.

The Architect Dialogue

  • Architect: Hello, Neo.

Neo: Who are you?

Architect: I am the Architect. I created the Matrix. I’ve been waiting for you. You have many questions, and though the process has altered your consciousness, you remain irrevocably human. Ergo some of my answers you will understand, and some of them you will not. Concordantly, while your first question may be the most pertinent, you may or may not realize it is also the most irrelevant.

God created the world. Neo has still not attained Nirvana and hence he is still a Human, but the process has altered his consciousness. (After attaining Nirvana though a person remains physically human till death, he rises above all the world systems and free from any form of suffering).

  • Neo: Why am I here?

Architect: Your life is the sum of a remainder of an unbalanced equation inherent to the programming of the Matrix. You are the eventuality of an anomaly, which, despite my sincerest efforts, I have been unable to eliminate from what is otherwise a harmony of mathematical precision. While it remains a burden assiduously avoided, it is not unexpected, and thus not beyond a measure of control. Which has led you, inexorably… here.

The world of samsara is perfect and the cycle of samsara continues forever and ever without breaking for all the beings in all the world systems alike. The cycle of happiness and suffering continues in harmony. Due to the anomaly in the system – that of endless suffering due to ignorance to see the world as it is – Buddha, who sees the world as it is i.e. impermanent, not self and full of suffering, comes into being for the total eradication of suffering.

  • Neo: You haven’t answered my question.

Architect: Quite right. Interesting. That was quicker than the others.

TV Neos: Others? How many others? What others? Answer my question!

Architect: The Matrix is older than you know. I prefer counting from the emergence of one integral anomaly to the emergence of the next, in which case this is the 6th version.

TV Neos: 5 `One’s before me? 4 3 2 What are you talking about?

Neo: There are only two possible explanations, either no one told me, or no one knows.

Architect: Precisely. As you are undoubtedly gathering, the anomaly is systemic – creating fluctuations in even the most simplistic equations.

Here they are speaking of the other Buddhas who existed before the present one that we know of. Buddha spoke of Buddhas who existed before him from a definite time period before him as there is infinite past and there is no beginning or an end of the Universe.

  • Architect: The first Matrix I designed was quite naturally perfect, it was a work of art – flawless, sublime. A triumph equalled only by its monumental failure. The inevitability of its doom is apparent to me now as a consequence of the imperfection inherent in every human being. Thus, I redesigned it based on your history to more accurately reflect the varying grotesqueries of your nature. However, I was again frustrated by failure. I have since come to understand that the answer eluded me because it required a lesser mind, or perhaps a mind less bound by the parameters of perfection. Thus the answer was stumbled upon by another – an intuitive program, initially created to investigate certain aspects of the human psyche. If I am the father of the matrix, she would undoubtedly be its mother.

Neo: The Oracle.

Here the Architect speaks of the creation and destruction of the world many times. Our world that of humans too has similarly been created and destroyed many times.

  • Architect: Please. As I was saying, she stumbled upon a solution whereby nearly 99% of all test subjects accepted the program, as long as they were given a choice, even if they were only aware of the choice at a near unconscious level. While this answer functioned, it was obviously fundamentally flawed, thus creating the otherwise contradictory systemic anomaly, that if left unchecked might threaten the system itself. Ergo those that refused the program, while a minority, if unchecked, would constitute an escalating probablility of disaster.

Neo: This is about Zion.

Most of us accept the world as we see it (99% for the Matrix), which is ofcourse the false view. Those who see the right view (the dhamma – Buddha’s teaching – anicca, anatta and dukkha)  forming the Sanga (Zion in Matrix).

  • Architect: You are here because Zion is about to be destroyed – its every living inhabitant terminated, its entire existence eradicated.

Neo: Bullshit.

TV Neos: Bullshit!

Architect: Denial is the most predictable of all human responses, but rest assured, this will be the sixth time we have destroyed it, and we have become exceedingly efficient at it.

Architect: The function of the One is now to return to the Source, allowing a temporary dissemination of the code you carry, reinserting the prime program. After which, you will be required to select from the Matrix 23 individuals – 16 female, 7 male – to rebuild   Zion.

Failure to comply with this process will result in a cataclysmic system crash, killing everyone connected to the Matrix, which, coupled with the extermination of Zion, will ultimately result in the extinction of the entire human race.

Our Earth has been created and destroyed many times earlier. After the death of the Buddha there is no further rebirth as both the body and mind (consciousness) decompose into its component parts i.e. return to its source.

  • Neo: You won’t let it happen. You can’t. You need human beings to survive.

Architect: There are levels of survival we are prepared to accept. However, the relevant issue is whether or not you are ready to accept the responsibility of the death of every human being on this world.

It is interesting, reading your reactions. Your 5 predecessors were, by design, based on a similar predication – a contingent affirmation that was meant to create a profound attachment to the rest of your species, facilitating the function of the One. While the others experienced this in a very general way, your experience is far more specific – vis a vis love.

Neo: Trinity.  …..the cost of her own.

Neo: No.

Profound love towards all living beings (Metta) one of the four Brahma Viharas (Heavenly States of mind) were present in all previous Buddhas, but is very specific in the future Buddha i.e. Maitreya Buddha who has incomparable love to all living beings (Metta).

  • Architect: Which brings us at last to the moment of truth, wherein the fundamental flaw is ultimately expressed, and the anomaly revealed as both beginning and end. There are two doors. The door to your right leads to the Source, and the salvation of Zion. The door to your left leads back to the Matrix, to her and to the end of your species. As you adequately put, the problem is choice. But we already know what you are going to do, don’t we? Already, I can see the chain reaction – the chemical precursors that signal the onset of an emotion, designed specifically to overwhelm logic and reason – an emotion that is already blinding you from the  simple and obvious truth. She is going to die, and there is nothing you can do to stop it.

Architect: Hope. It is the quintessential human delusion, simultaneously the source of your greatest strength and your greatest weakness.

Neo: If I were you, I would hope that we don’t meet again.

Architect: We won’t.

The fundamental flaw of Samsara – Anomaly – annica, anatta and dukkha – as both the beginning and end of suffering.

As Neo is still a human during the dialogue and not gained complete understanding of Matrix (attained Nirvana) he is still affected by blinding emotion of human beings.


Matrix Analogy | Matrix Analogy Reloaded | Matrix Analogy Revolutions


12: Matrix Analogy


Unfortunately, no one can be told what the Matrix is. You have to see it for yourself.

–Morpheus


Matrix Analogy | Matrix Analogy Reloaded | Matrix Analogy Revolutions


The Matrix – a Hollywood movie released with two sequels as Matrix Reloaded and Matrix Revolutions together called the Matrix Trilogy is a very good movie and there is no doubt about it. But what one doesn’t know or was purposefully left by the directors of the movie was the hidden meaning behind the Movie. After watching the movie, most people are left with intriguing questions and some left with their own meaning of what the Matrix is. But why am I discussing a movie in this book/ Does it have anything to do with attaining Nirvana? Does it have anything to do with Buddhism? The answer is a definite yes. The movie is a good blend of Buddhist teachings and Computer concepts and a story of its own.

A disclaimer here – The views and interpretation of the Movie is of the author alone and are not expected to match the view of the directors or any other person, though it is a good analogy for Buddhist teachings.

Concept:

The two worlds dominating the movie are the Matrix and the Zion.

Matrix: The Matrix is a software world, powered by human beings, who are used as batteries to run the Matrix. All the human senses are emulated by the software called Matrix, which makes them feel the virtual world is real. Everything in the Matrix is a program. The birds (all animals), all events, the environment, etc are all programmed software.

The Matrix represents our world of sense pleasures. Our world like the Matrix is bound by Ignorance. We like the people in Matrix are unable to see the reality as it is. Our world like the Matrix is conditioned, conditioned by the mind to be real and permanent, which in reality is impermanent, and lacking in substantialness and bound to deliver Dukkha.

Zion: The real world (in the movie Matrix). The human beings trapped in the Matrix are freed by the residents of Zion. Morpheus rescues Neo from the Matrix as he believes that Neo will be able to rescue all the people from the Matrix.

The Zion represents the Community of Monks/Buddhists called Sangha. The Arahants and the members of the Sangha try to liberate the laymen with Buddha’s Teachings (Dhamma), from the world of sense pleasures which is bound by dukkha.

Neo: An Acronym for The ‘One’ who will free all the people from the Matrix. Mr. Anderson in Matrix and called Neo in Zion. He is a Hacker in Matrix with inquisitive mind and encouraged by Morpheus to understand the Matrix. He gains understanding of the Matrix, which gives him more control and power in Matrix and he is even able to fly freely in Matrix.

Neo is an analogy for the Buddha [The Enlightened/Awakened ‘One’]. Buddha understood the world of Samsara, the Dukkha and became free from the world of Samsara to attain Nirvana. It can be observed that Neo represents the future Buddha – Maitreya.

Morpheus: Morpheus is a resident of Zion with very strong beliefs. He believes that Neo can saves the lives of those in Matrix. He is ready to give is life and limb to save Neo so the all the people in the Matrix can be freed.

Here Morpheus represents a Bodhisattva, who is ready to give his life and limb for the benefit of others. Also Morpheus is bald which shows his  association with Buddhist monks.

The Architect: The Matrix is programmed by the Architect, who in turn is also a software program and part of Matrix.

The Architect represents the world of Gods  – the great architect of the Universe.

The Oracle: The Oracle also represents Deva Loka. She knows the future and understands the Matrix and its workings, but doesn’t have much control on it.

Merovingian: Merovingian is a person with huge amount of money and power. He trades in information. Even though he has a lot of money and power he wants more money and more power.

Merovingian represents the world of Titans who fight with each other and the Gods for more power and status.

The Twins: Has the ability to pass through Material Objects.

They represents the world of Hungry Ghosts.

Birds : The birds in Matrix are programs similar to programs written for sunrise and sunset ….

The birds in Matrix represents the animal world. They have consciousness, but lack understanding and knowledge.

Lets us review the dialogues of the Matrix Triology

The Matrix

  • Morpheus: The Matrix is everywhere. It is all around us, even now in this very room. You can see it when you look out your window or when you turn on your television. You can feel it when you go to work, when you go to church, when you pay your taxes. It is the world that has been pulled over your eyes to blind you from the truth.

Here Morpheus refers to the nature of Samsara or the world of sense pleasures, that blinds us from observing the truth.

  • Morpheus: Unfortunately, no one can be told what the Matrix is. You have to see it for yourself.

Morpheus here speaks of Nirvana. It is very difficult to explain Nirvana. You have to experience it yourself.

  • Morpheus: Is it really so hard to believe? Your clothes are different. The plugs in your arms and head are gone. Your hair has changed. Your appearance now is what we call residual self image. It is the mental projection of your digital self.

Here Morpheus speaks of the mind and body duality, we saw in the chapter Dependent Origination.

  • Morpheus:What is real? How do you define real? If you’re talking about what you can feel, what you can smell, what you can taste and see, then real is simply electrical signals interpreted by your brain. This is the world that you know…. You’ve been living in a dream world, Neo.

Here again Morpheus speaks of the nature of Samsara, the world as we see with our limited faculties of senses – the Six Senses  and interpreting it as real or permanent. 

  • Morpheus : When the Matrix was first built, there was a man born inside who had the ability to change whatever he wanted, to remake the Matrix as he saw fit. It was he who freed the first of us, taught us the truth: ‘As long as the Matrix exists the human race will never be free.’ After he died the Oracle prophesied his return and that his coming would hail the destruction of the Matrix…. That is why there are those of us who have spent our entire lives searching the Matrix looking for him.

Here Morpheus refers to Gautama, the Buddha, who freed the first of us from suffering, from dukkha. The Buddha taught us the Four Noble truth. After his death it is prophesied that a future Buddha, Maitreya, having deep compassion and incomparable love for all living beings would come into existence.  A lot of Buddhist countries are searching for Maitreya – The future Buddha.

  • Morpheus: I’m trying to free your mind, Neo, but I can only show you the door, you’re the one that has to walk through it.…. You have to let it all go, Neo, fear, doubt, and disbelief. Free your mind.

Here Morpheus speaks of the Noble Eight Fold path, that has to be followed by each one for himself. He also speaks of freeing our mind through meditation and awareness.

  • Morpheus: The Matrix is a system, Neo. That system is our enemy. But when you’re inside, you look around. What do you see? Business people, teachers, lawyers, carpenters. The very minds of the people we are trying to save. But until we do, these people are still a part of that system, and that makes them our enemy. You have to understand, most of these people are not ready to be unplugged. And many of them are so inert, so hopelessly dependent on the system that they will fight to protect it.

Until people are aware of Nirvana, aware of the three universal truth of impermanence, not self and Dukkha, they are inert and do not want to be unplugged or want to remain in the world of sense pleasures. They also expect you to enjoy the world of sense pleasures. Thus, they will prevent you from attaining Nirvana.

  • Cypher: You know, I know this steak doesn’t exist. I know that when I put it in my mouth, the Matrix is telling my brain that it is juicy and delicious. After nine years, you know what I realize? Ignorance is bliss.

Even those who know the Buddha’s teachings are so attracted to sense pleasures that they don not want to leave it. They would prefer to remain ignorant and remain in the endless cycle of Samsara.

  • Spoon boy: Do not try and bend the spoon. That’s impossible. Instead only try to realize the truth….Then you’ll see that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself.

You need to realize the three universal truth of impermanence, not self and dukkha. We see unsatisfactoriness or suffering in the world, while unsatisfactoriness exists within ourselves by not realizing the truth.

  • Morpheus: Neo, sooner or later you’re going to realize, just as I did, that there’s a difference between knowing the path and walking the path.

Here Morpheus speaks of following the Eight Fold Path. While most people know the Eight Fold Path and some are even experts in Buddhist philosophies, very few actually follow the path. Only by following the path can Nirvana be attained.


Matrix Analogy | Matrix Analogy Reloaded | Matrix Analogy Revolutions


11: Graduation System


What is the graduation System? Why was it needed?

We found after 4 years of practicing Buddhism, that we were unable to judge the progress we made in these years. We found our education system very effective in telling our progress and also motivating us for further progress.

The graduation System that we devised to judge our progress is similar to our educational system. This will help us to measure our progress and also motivate us. But there is a difference. Here we will have to judge our progress for ourselves as no one else can know what progress we have made. This chapter provides us the necessary progress guidelines.

Practice

Level 1(1 yr): We are aware of all our actions and are able to avoid breaking any of the precepts in action.

Level 2(2 yr): We are aware of our speech in addition to our actions and are able to avoid breaking any of the precepts in action and speech.

Level 3(3 yr): We have achieved above level and are aware of all our thoughts and are able to avoid breaking any of the precepts in thoughts.

Level 4(4 yr): We are aware of all our thoughts, speech and actions through the day and are able to avoid breaking any of the precepts in action, speech and thought. We maintain awareness all the time.

Level 5(5 yr): We have achieved above levels and are able to meditate properly and for at-least 1 hour per day for at least 4 days per week. We now understand the importance, benefits and procedure for meditation.

Insight

Level 6(6 yr): We have achieved above levels and are free from greed, anger and ignorance. Ignorance in the sense that we now that all things in this universe are impermanent, that there is no permanent entity as soul and there is dukkha in attaching to things conditioned by impermanence and concept of permanent soul

Level 7(7 yr): We have achieved above levels. We understand the cycle of karma better. We understand karma better, i.e. we are aware our such and such an action will bear good or bad or no future implications.

Level 8(8 yr): We have achieved the above levels. We understand the different world systems, that of humans, gods, demons, hell, animals and hungry ghosts. We know what kind of action brings one to a particular world system. We understand the impermanent nature of all the world systems. We can empathize with the sufferings of each world system. We are thus motivated to grow above these world systems to be free from sufferings.

Level 9(9 yr): We have achieved the above levels. We know all the 12 links of dependent origination. We know which cause has which effect. We are able to intercept on at least one of the links and are able to break the cyclic cause and effect relationship and thus are very near to achieving Nirvana. Thus we know and act such that all your actions, speech and thought are free from cause and effect. All our karmas are now non-volitional i.e. not involving desire or craving.

Level 10(10 yr): We have achieved the above levels. We have now attained Nirvana and can see the world as it is. The world as impermanent, with no concept of self and the world full of sufferings caused due to ignorance to see the truth. Thus free from ignorance all actions, speech and thoughts are perfected. We are now an Arahant. But wait! Be cautious! We may not have achieved Nirvana and will be lethargic and can drift back from this stage. So we must maintain our awareness and maintain the state where all our sufferings have ended because of our wholesome acts or acts not involving desire. We may still have to suffer physical pain as our human body has a tendency to decay, old age and death. We may also have to suffer for our bad karma in the past but no new karma is created.

The years mentioned against each level is to give an idea of the amount of effort one needs to put at each level to attain Nirvana. Thus with proper efforts we can achieve Nirvana in 10 years or less or more depending on our efforts and grasping of insight and acting upon it and also on the level and effort in meditation. We may not achieve complete perfection in each level unless we go to the next level. E.g. our actions and speech will not be perfect unless we reach level 3 where our thoughts are purified. Our thoughts will not be pure unless we are totally aware all the time of all our thoughts in level 4, which will not be perfected unless in level 5 our meditation is perfected and we have trained our mind to monitor itself.