Although we all wish to be happy, again and again we find our attainment of happiness frustrated by obstacles or hindrances – both external and internal. When our mind is filled with negative thoughts and delusions, such as attachment, anger and ignorance, we experience great harm and suffering. They prevent us from maintaining a peaceful mind, and also destroy whatever happiness we may have gained. This practice contains a special method for averting and overcoming hindrances in general and the ‘mara’ or ‘demon’ of delusions in particular that involves the recitation and contemplation of the Essence of Wisdom Sutra, or Heart Sutra, which can be performed either for one’s own sake or for the benefit of others.
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