You’re probably all wondering what this unborn Buddha-mind is like.
The Buddha-mind, unborn and illuminating all things with perfect clarity, is like a mirror, standing clear and spotlessly polished. A mirror, as you know, reflects anything that’s before it. Whatever’s placed in front of it, the shape never fails to be reflected, though the mirror has no idea or intention of doing so. And when the object is taken away, the mirror doesn’t reflect it any longer, though it makes no decision to cease reflecting.
Now that’s just how the unborn Buddha-mind works. You see and hear all things, no matter what they are, although you haven’t generated a single thought to see or hear them, because of the vital working of the unborn Buddha-mind each of you receives at birth.
Once you’ve got the principle of this Unborn fixed in your minds, you’re Unborn whether you’re a man or a woman. You are always unborn. You go along living in the Buddha-mind quite unconscious of being a man or woman.
Although you each have Buddha-minds, you’ve deprived yourselves of them because of the mistaken way that you’ve been brought up. A lifetime of learning the wrong things. You still have a Buddha-mind, for all the bad things you’ve learned and the delusions your thoughts create for you. You can’t possibly lose it. It’s just darkened by the illusions caused by your selfish desires and partiality.
Perhaps a comparison will help make this clear.
The sun shines day after day without fail, yet if clouds appear to make the sky overcast, it can’t be seen. It still comes up in the east every morning and goes down in the west. The only difference is that you can’t see it because it’s hidden behind the clouds. The sun is your Buddha-mind, the clouds are your illusions. You are unaware of your Buddha-minds because they’re covered by illusions and can’t be seen. But you never lose them, not even when you go to sleep.
The unborn Buddha-mind that your mothers have given you is thus always there, wonderfully clear and bright and illuminating.