I have speculated for some time about the inportance of the magik number 3 and now feel that this number is essential to our understanding of, who we really are.
Many from a Christian-based culture will immediately make the link to the 3 aspects of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Those drawn to eastern mysticism will perhaps think of Brahma the creator, Vishnu the preserver and Shiva the destroyer/transformer.
But it is really through the teachings of Tibettan Lamas that I have started to understand the true importance of the 3 "bodies" (kaya in Sanskrit). The Lamas describe the 3 bodies of a fully enlightened Buddha as Dharmakaya - the body of truth, Sambohdakaya - the body of enjoyment or pleasure, Nirmanakaya - the body of manifestation.
Body of Truth.
The ultimate true nature, not only of a fully enlightened Buddha, but of everyone - we others just haven't realised it yet! This is the clear light stillness which we occasionally experience in deep meditation, a feeling of being totally at one with Source. In western mysticism it is sometimes refered to as "I AM presence", and more recently the word "Monad" or "monadic presence" has been used, and may be something similar."I AM presence" is often described as the part of us which is always withGod.
Body of Enjoyment.
This is the form which one often sees in Buddhist art where the aspect of the Enlightened mind is seen wearing beautiful silk robes, jewelled ornaments and sometimes embracing a consort in tantric bliss. Could this be our Higher self? It is often said that our soul only incarnates a percentage of our soul energy while on earth. Is our Higher self enjoying bliss in heaven just waiting for the death of ego so we can also enjoy bliss on earth? Some spiritual authors also suggest that the Highest self is carrying out wonderful service work on a higher level while the lower self is engaged in service here on Earth.
Body of Manifestation.
This is the body which an Enlightened one manifests on Earth (or other planets) in order to connect with us ordinary mortals to teach and guide us. The Lord Gautama Buddha was the prime example, but other such bodies on Earth ionclude H.H. Delai Lama, a manifestation of Chenrezig, Boddhisattva of Compassion. It is their unlimited compassion for all living beings which propells the Boddhisattva to incarnate, solely motivated to help others, as they are already free from the wheel of karma. We ordinary people also have a body manifest on Earth. Howerver, although we may have a Soul mission to fulfill regarding serving others or serving Mother Earth, we also have karma to be balanced. Most of us also lack the incredible drive and the belief in the wholeness of their mission which the Buddhas and Boddhisattvas have.
What about the Christian Father, Son and Holy Ghost?
If there is some correlation, the Son is clearly similar to a manifestation of Divine Mind in physical form, similar to the Body of Manifestation of a Buddha. In fact, some have suggested that the story of the 3 wise men using astrology to find the Christ baby has remarkable similarities to the seach conducted by a Lama's closest students after the death of their master.
The Holy Spirit seems to have the non-physicality of the Body of Truth and the feeling of very deep meditation, formless.
Could it be that the old artists depicting the Father as a man dressed in flowing robes up in heaven had seen a glimpse of the Body of Enjoyment? Or perhaps that the Body of Enjoyment of an Enlightened One mirrors the Heavenly body of the Father. After all, biblical sources tell us that we were "created" in His image.
Not long ago, I had a deep experience of all three levels at the same time. I was swimming across a lake in Baveria, swimming breaststroke, and started to visualise myself sending love out from my heart with the rythmic co-ordination of my breath and the strokes as I swam. I visualised the love flowing through the water,filling it with beautiful clean-clear Christ energy, to all the life in the water, and to all the people, animals and plants around the lake.
I started to receive impressions, first of my Highest self, spreading love to the entire planet and beyond to our solar system And finally my Monadic Presence similarly doing service work at a galactic and pan-galactic level.
A wonderful experience, although it did take me rather longer than nornal to get from one end of the lake and back again tan when I have swam that lake before!