Buddhists have cherished White Tara practice as a prayer for world peace and healing.
Tara is also a symbol of compassionate action.Tara’s legend is that of a Buddha who resolved to take birth in female form in order to demonstrate that Buddha nature occurs in every form, male, female, black, white (or green! Tara comes in many colors, what timely symbol).
Some might think that compassionate action and silent meditation are opposites, however meditation leads to compassionate action. That is the major principle of Mahayana Buddhism and the Bodhisattva path, our meditation and work with our own mind has the natural result of wanting to relieve the suffering of others, help others and uplift our world. When we go inward, we also connect more every one else, since those artificial boundaries dissolve.
Likewise, skillful action requires meditation and vigorous inspection of our own mind, motives and ways of being. We can not act skillfully to address the world problems unless we have a firm connection with our basic wisdom and goodness, our Buddha-nature.
The story of Tara reminds me of Buddhism’s potent method of activism, to devote our lives to becoming what we seek to see in the world, love, mercy, peace and social equality for all. How this plays out in each one of our lives is varied, but we are all called to clarify, strengthen and act on our enlightened intentions. For me whenever I encounter racism, sexism or bigotry, I ask myself what I can do. This always puts me deeper in Buddhist philosophy because I realize that underlying racism, sexism and bigotry there is ignorance. Every person wants to be free from suffering. Every person wants happiness. Developing greater awareness and understanding of our own minds is the foundation of other standing others.
– Pema Khandro