A Golden Dream

24 May

HatI just had a wonderful dream last week and fortunately, I could still remember it. In my slumber, I was transported by the power of my dream to a strange place. 

As I tried to orientate myself to the new location, I realised that I was in a sort of waiting lounge of an airport. There were rows of generic benches with some people milling about. Just diagonally towards my right,  I saw Rinpoche seated with his face calm and he seemed to be in a pleasant state of mind. He was clad in maroon and yellow robes but wore no hat. 

As I was observing Rinpoche, an Indian monk came and sat next to Rinpoche and his generous robes seemed to shimmer with a celestial glow of saffron and yellow. His face resembled that of Rinpoche's – broad, generous and striking with a piercing set of eyes. As I continue to admire his robes, I realised that he was crowned with a yellow pandit's hat. I was awe-struck by the spectacle of the brilliant yellow hat. 

I know some of you are wondering what so great about the hat… 

Well, it is only worn by high Lamas on special ceremonial occasions and it denotes the spiritual authority of the Lama. The original pandit's hat were worn by old masters of ancient India who engage in formal debates to win over the faith of the unruly non-Buddhists. Using logic motivated by compassion to subjugate and convert them, the hat had come to symbolise the spiritual might of Buddha's wisdom. The hat was originally red but Lama Tsongkhapa changed it to yellow at the behest of Vajrayogini to reflect his activities of growth and increase of the Dharma. The hat is actually so simple and elegant and yet it can command such powerful significance. 

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