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Buddha Suite Part VIIb - The Waterfall (Reprise) (2nd half)

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Published on Sep 4, 2007

With Mara and his armies gone, Siddhartha meditated without distraction for the rest of the night, and entered into progressively deeper stages of meditation. When his mind became sufficiently concentrated, he attained the Three Knowledges - The Recollection of Past Lives, The Knowledge of The Passing Away & Reappearance of Beings, and The Knowledge of the Ending of Mental Fermentations. The three solos in this piece represent Siddhartha attaining the Three Knowleges. After attaining these knowleges, his "heart, thus knowing, thus seeing, was released" and from this point on he was called "The Buddha" meaning "The Awakened One." The Buddha spent then spent the entire following week meditating on the bliss of enlightenment. I chose to portray Buddha's enlightenment with the same theme as his childhood to express the concept that enlightenment is essentially returning to a state of innocence. Actually, it is said that Buddha's inspiration for finding the "Middle Way" was recalling a moment when - as a child and without any spiritual instruction - he sat under a tree with a calm mind on a pleasant day, the same circumstances under which he attained enlightenment. Every hero must have a homecoming, and while the Buddha did not at this point immediately return to his physical home, he had returned to himself. As one of the Buddha's followers would put it hundreds of years later:

"Before I had studied Zen for thirty years, I saw mountains as mountains, and waters as waters.
When I arrived at a more intimate knowledge, I came to the point
where I saw that mountains are not mountains, and waters are not waters.
But now that I have got its very substance I am at rest.
For it's just that I see mountains once again as mountains, and waters once again as waters."

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