This is another important Mahayana teaching.
Samsara and Nirvana seem to be polar opposites. Samsara is said to be the cycle of birth, death and rebirth. It is the realm of suffering. While Nirvana is liberation from rebirth, ignorance and suffering! So it is very surprising to hear that Samsara is Nirvana, how can that be true?
Samsara and Nirvana are two ways of looking at the Universe, two different perspectives, two points of view.
For the unenlightened person whose heart and mind are full of delusions, greed and hatred the Universe is a place of suffering. This is because the universe does not conform itself to their desires, thing don’t happen they way they want, things don’t go as they had planned. Hence they are frustrated and suffer.
But enlightened persons whose hearts and minds are purified and free from desire and ignorance are able to accept and enjoy the Universe as it is. They are at peace with the Universe and not frustrated by it. For them the Universe is the Pure Land and Nirvana, and the way the universe evolves is the Dao.
The problem with Samsara does not actually lie with Samsara itself, but with us! It is in fact our problem. It comes from us not seeing clearly and appreciating the Universe as it is, all because of our ignorance and delusional thinking.
When freed from such afflictions we can appreciate the Universe and are immediately ‘reborn in the Pure Land’ of Nirvana.