This past weekend, Khandro-la gave a commentary on Machik's Five Slogans and what I most appreciated is how she broke down the five slogans within the three classifications of charnel grounds - outer, inner, and secret. The charnel ground we find ourself in is where the dakini arises and the five Dakinis weave in and out of all three. She dances in her different energies to the background music of our damaru and bell as our demons join her. It's all the same to a Dakini.
We in the nirmanakaya too weave in and out of all three charnel grounds - the outer is where we physically find an ideal environment with adverse conditions to plant our feet for divine tantric practice, the inner is where our landscape darkly shifts to fear and we dance with it instead of leaving our footing, and the secret is where when the demons sing songs of forgetting who and what we are, we divinely belly laugh alongside the dakini.
Samsara ... nirvana ... it's all the same to a Dakini. Machik Labdron was the Dakini who taught us the path of severance through her wisdom of Cho practice. Cho is cultivating the path of letting go of things that are good, bad, and ugly - it's all the same just by another name. It's about finding a different approach to how you live your life through working with your demons and seeing them as a support, a strength, and a way to transform them into awakened energies. Khandro-la called that "wisdom in disguise".
Within this world of the five slogans for cho practitioners, the summation is that we are never alone in our striving for severance from self-cherishing and self-grasping. The fifth slogan is, "Go to the places that scare you," and that reveals to us the three charnel grounds. Those hold the other slogans of giving what we are attached to, confessing faults, helping where we don't think we can help, and embracing what is repulsive. Cho practice allows us to embody the greatness of it all as the dakini walks with us fiercely, alluringly, and lovingly in all our charnel grounds!