When we do daily prayers or meditations or engaging into six
perfections, one must include three things. i.e.
(1) Proper Motivation
(2) Proper Action
(3) Proper Dedication
Only then your prayers and any virtuous action is complete.
1. Proper Motivation: It depends on each individual.
Normally divide into three different kinds of motivation. i.e.
A: Least motivation.
One can generate motivation just to be able to be reborn into another
fortunate rebirth so that one can continue our practice in our next
life. Because if we fall into an unfortunate rebirth like Hell, Hungry
Ghost and Animal life then we have no way to practice, but instead we
have to suffer more and more. Therefore with this concern if you
Practice of Dharma with this motivation is known as least motivation.
B: Medium Motivation.
Even if I am born in human rebirth or higher like Demi God, and God
realm, I still have to face all kind of suffering such as birth, aging
sickness and death. These are the major forms of suffering which I
cannot escape from cyclic existence of samsara. Wherever I may be born I
am forced to be born in Samsara by the force of my own negative karmic
actions. Therefore, I must come out of cyclic existence of Samsara and
must achieve Nirvana or Self Realization, so that I don't have to be
born with the force of my negative karmic action. Practice of Dharma
with this motivation is known as Medium Motivation.
C: Highest Motivation.
Just achieving Nirvana or Self Realization for myself alone is not
enough as all the mother sentient beings still remain in Samsara. I just
cannot be a selfish Dharma practitioner. Therefore, I must practice
Dharma to free all the mother sentient beings from their suffering and
achieve ultimate happiness. Generate Bodhicitta or Mind of Enlightenment
for the welfare of all mother sentient beings and practice dharma with
this motivation is known as Highest motivation.
The Highest Motivation had two divisions:
(1) Causal Perfection Vehicle and Resultant Tantric Vehicle.
In your Dharma practice if your motivation is any one of these three
then your practice is true Dharma practice, though the first two
Small/Least Motivation and Medium Motivation are for Hinayana Vehicle.
If your concern of practicing Dharma is only for the achievement for
this current life, then your practice is call Worldly Dharma. That means
it is not true Dharma at all. Therefore make sure when you generate
Motivation it must be at least any of these three but better still,
strive with the Highest Motivation.
Now the second part is
Here any Dharma practice like, recitation mantras, reading Dharma text,
Meditation on any dharma topic, practicing in Six Perfections, doing any
virtuous work, right action, and right speech, right thought. Any
virtuous Actions are Proper Action.
(3) And finally Proper Dedication: Right after finishing doing
Proper Action one must dedicate properly. One can dedicate according to
how one has generated one’s motivation at the beginning. Most of us fail
in this part. We never do proper dedication. Most of our Merit is burned
down before we dedicate by the 3 poisons of greed, hatred and ignorance
in us. These delusions are the one who burn our Merit and create all
kind of unwanted suffering. Therefore, immediately after finishing
Dharma or Proper Action, one must dedicate immediately before those
negative emotion arise. Without dedication would be like putting so much
effort to obtain a drop of water and waste it by letting it drop onto
dry sand. With proper dedication is like storing this very drop of water
in the ocean, and it will remain there until the ocean is dry.
Similarly in our practice of dharma without proper dedication, the drop
of merit we create will be burned by our own negative delusions.
Therefore, we must pour the drop of Merit into the ocean of merit and
the merit will remain until we achieve Buddhahood.
Otherwise, you may have doubt as to why you don't feel the difference in
your Dharma practice. As we all know we try our best to do good actions.
But we never feel the difference in our practice. Why? Simple answer is
that we did not do our practice properly i.e. without all the 3 parts.
For some High Masters, we feel the energy and the power of their
practice. Because their practice always complete with these three parts.
That is why their merit is stored without damage or burn down by their
fire of delusion. If we do the same then for sure we will feel the
energy and finally achieve Buddhahood.