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PREMIERE ISSUE

SPRING 2006


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PALYUL CLEAR LIGHT Premiere Issue SPRING 2006

C O N T E N T S

Forward Letter from His Holiness Penor Rinpoche Introduction Letter by Khen Rinpoche Tsewang Gyatso

About the Cover 3, 4

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History

The Story of Shakyamuni Buddha

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The Mother Palyul Monastery

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Dharma Teachings

Hardships in Dharma Practice by His Holiness Penor Rinpoche

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Day-To-Day Buddhism by Khen Rinpoche Tsewang Gyatso

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Practical Instruction

Learning Tibetan: How to Write Tibetan Consonants

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Dharma Numeration: Twos

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India Monastery News

Namdroling Monastery Ngagyur Nyingma Institute Samten Oseling Retreat Center Tsogyal Shedrub Ling Nunnery

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The cover portrays the "Same As Me" statue of Guru Rinpoche, Padmasambhava, in the sky above the Palyul Retreat Center at McDonough, New York. The statue was forged in the 8th Century at Samye Monastery in Tibet. It is said that when Guru Rinpoche saw the statue he said, “It looks like me.” Then he blessed the statue and said, “Now, it's the same as me.” The Palyul Retreat Center, located in upstate New York near Binghamton, is the main seat of His Holiness Penor Rinpoche in the United States, and the site of the annual summer retreat, where, under the guidance of His Holiness, instruction is offered at various levels from the preliminary practices to Dzogchen.

Editors' Note In transcribing and editing the oral teachings of our beloved teachers for publication in this magazine, we have done our best to be true to those teachings and not to add any of our own words or ideas. We have tried to secure as complete a review as possible by our teachers of all the articles published herein. If we have failed to accurately portray any concept or idea, we accept full responsibility and will strive to correct any mistake in a subsequent issue. Published by Palyul Clear Light Publication © 2006. All rights reserved. Palyul Clear Light is published semi-annually in the spring and autumn. Special thanks to everyone who supports

Short Stories

The Wealth of Wisdom

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The Wise Sage’s Payment

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this project, without whose financial and moral support this project would not have materialized. May all beings benefit. Please address all correspondence and donations to: Longchenpa Publication Project, c/o Longchenpa Institute

Palyul Ling

News from the Centers Teaching Schedules

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Palyul Centers Around the World

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P.O. Box 1234, Stafford, VA 22555. The contents of this publication may be considered sacred text and should be treated with respect. Should you wish to dispose of it, please burn it rather than throw it away.


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F O R W A R D by His Holiness Drubwang Pema Norbu Rinpoche

The increase and decrease of wealth and of our world is mainly dependent upon the meritorious virtue of the sentient beings of this world. To obtain liberation and enlightenment, however, depends not only on one's merit. Rather, temporary and ultimate unsurpassable happiness is completely dependent on the practice of the transmission and accomplishment of the teachings taught by the great compassionate and victorious ones in general, and specifically on the most swift path of the secret Vajrayana teachings applied properly in one's being, without being separated from the wisdom of listening, reflecting and meditating, accordingly. Buddhism has flourished in Tibet, the land of snowy mountains, for many thousands of years. The teachings have been transmitted through the ancient Nyingma School lineage masters in general, and specifically through the glorious eastern Palyul lineage masters. These masters achieved high realizations, with the qualities of clairvoyance and miraculous activities. They became liberated in clear light rainbow bodies, many left many different colored relics after their cremation, and some had various signs of accomplishment when they passed away, such as the sky filled with rainbows and so forth. This lineage passes on the blessings of those countless mahasiddhas that arose within the tradition and lineage. These days we have many followers of the Palyul lineage in Asian countries such as India, Nepal, Taiwan, etc., and in the West in America, Canada, Europe and so forth. We are publishing this

Palyul Clear Light magazine to benefit all the students of these established Dharma centers and especial-

ly for those who are interested in Tibetan culture and Tibetan Buddhism, through which you can learn and realize this matter. We especially hope that you can all give rise within your beings to compassion, loving kindness and bodhicitta as the essence of the supreme dharma, that you can gain the proper understanding of these, and with that motivation apply into practice through hearing inseparable from the three wisdoms of listening, contemplation and meditation. These three wisdoms can be an antidote for the ignorant mind of self-grasping, desire and so forth, and all other afflictive emotions.

By this, temporally may all obstructing conditions and obstacles be pacified, may merit, material wealth and longevity of life increase, and with excellent joy and happiness, may all apply into the practice of dharma diligently, that all may realize the secret-most view of the Great Perfection through the path of method or liberation. I have the intention and make the aspirational prayer that all may achieve the stage of the primordially perfect dharmakaya within this lifetime.

Paltrul Pema Norbu

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INTRODUCTION by Khen Rinpoche Tsewang Gyatso

Only through a clear understanding and enough knowledge of the teachings of the Buddha, based on sutra and tantra, and by educating oneself with the commentaries of Indian and Tibetan scholars, can one do a better practice. And one must have a proper practice; it is not enough just having knowledge. As Acharya Vasubhandu said, The teachings of the Buddha consist of two kinds: The scriptural and the realization teachings. The only methods to uphold the doctrine Are to proclaim these teachings and engage in the practice. The cause of happiness within this life and in the future is completely dependent on the right view with good knowledge and right understanding. Proper education in general, and specifically in the spiritual field, is the source of good understanding and great knowledge. Therefore we, with pure intention, want to offer this magazine to educate everyone in these unique fields, to educate and benefit you as well as future generations. This magazine, Palyul Clear Light, has been published to promote information on Tibetan dharma history, as well as Palyul lineage history and teachings. We hope to present all levels of information and teachings, including instruction on writing Tibetan script, and we offer stories to share for fun and knowledge. We plan to publish the magazine semi-annually. Palyul Clear Light is also a publication organization and we intend to publish many books for all who are interested. We plan to publish translations from original Tibetan textbooks, and also to transcribe teachings of His Holiness Penor Rinpoche and of various khenpos in the near future. The mission of the Palyul Clear Light organization is to facilitate the continued existence and spread of the Palyul tradition of Tibetan Buddhism throughout Asia and the West through education and publication. In addition, we want to be able to preserve, through re-publication, ancient Tibetan texts that are in danger of being lost to this world. Our second goal is to foster the continuation of monastic education in India, Tibet and the United States. This support will include scholarships for monastic students in India and Tibet and for academic studies in the West. We also hope to be able to help students who attend three-year retreats. We appreciate your support through donations, which make possible the continuation of this enterprise, and will try to serve you all with our best efforts. We will perform fundraising activities as necessary to complete this dream. We also ask that you, our readers, support us to whatever extent you can. We appreciate any suggestions, as well as your questions and compliments. Yours truly in dharma,

Khenpo Tsewang Gyatso

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The Story of Shakyamuni Buddha

Khen Rinpoche Tsewang Gyatso

T h e

f o u n d e r o f B u d d h i s m is Shakyamuni Buddha. He was born in 623 B.C. in India into the royal family of the Shakyas as Prince Siddhartha. India is a very ancient country, rich with culture, religion, and tradition within the Asian countries. It has a great history, especially for Buddhism. According to Buddhism, this present time is a bright aeon, because there is the light of the Buddha's teachings and because there will appear one thousand and two Buddhas within this aeon. Out of the thousand, the first Buddha was Khorwa Jig and fourth was Shakyamuni Buddha. As of now, four Buddhas have already appeared. Now this is Shakyamuni Buddha's time and his teachings will last for a long time. For countless aeons of lifetimes Shakyamuni Buddha was born as an ordinary sentient being. Then, after developing the thought of attaining enlightenment to benefit all sentient beings and engaging in practice to accumulate merit and wisdom for three countless aeons of lifetimes, the holy Svetaketu, born in heaven as a son of the gods (a Bodhisattva of the tenth level of realization), was bound to take birth once more, and was born as the prince Siddhartha. There are slightly different versions of Shakyamuni's life and how he gained enlightenment, according to the common Mahayana vehicle and according to Vajrayana. But here, without going through those specific details, I want to explain the common life story of Shakyamuni Buddha. Shakyamuni Buddha was in the divine Tushita heaven as the son of the gods before he took birth on this earth. He taught the doctrine to the gods for a while, and dwelt with them. One day, the music of verses spontaneously resounded, inspiring him to fulfill the prophecies of Buddha Dipam Kara. Based on that, his birth on this earth has the great purpose of benefiting many beings. 6

It happened that while Queen Maya Devi was traveling with her entourage to her parents' palace, at Lumbini Garden, she gave birth to this great being. The moment he was born, he walked to the four directions and lotus sprung as he lifted his feet. At that time he expressed, He walked seven steps on this great earth The moment the supreme of the two-legged beings was born, And said, “I will be supreme among worldly beings, I pay homage to the Wise One. Prince Siddhartha already knew that he would be the Supreme Being, who was purposely born to benefit all the sentient beings. The king Sudhodhana, his father, presented him to an astrologer saint, who told the father that this child would become the most wonderful being on this earth. The sage prophesied that he would become either a great ruler or a very great enlightened being. The king was both happy and sad. If the prince remained in the palace he would become the great successor to his father, but then again he might renounce the world and follow his quest for the path to enlightenment. So the king tried from the beginning to offer the prince the best life with all sorts of comfort and luxury. He had summer and winter palaces with beautiful lounges and gardens created, to provide every possibility of joy and happiness. The prince was surrounded by very beautiful maidens, who served him with all kinds of entertainment. The father had every single aspect of enjoyment and luxury prepared for his son. Prosperity was the nature of Prince Siddhartha's life in this kingdom. Prince Siddhartha was very compassionate and loving from his childhood. He never harmed anyone or caused problems even when he was playing with his rela-


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tives and friends. His kind nature brought him a great reputation among his subjects and he was loved by everyone. The prince grew up to be a very handsome and brave young man. He was trained in all sorts of games, archery, horse riding and all other training, without missing any of the things that a prince would ever need. He was most talented and skilled in all fields of training and education. But still he never had any pride or ego. He treated his cousins and friends, every one, equally. One time while he was resting in his garden a swan fell down into the garden, having been wounded with an arrow in her wings. He immediately picked her up very gently and tried to give her some treatment. He felt so sorry and had so much compassion for her. But the next moment, his cousin, Dev Dutta, came running towards him saying, “Give me back the swan. It is mine. I shot her.” The prince slowly looked at him and said, “Look, she is in pain. She needs treatment to heal so that she can live.” But his cousin did not listen and insisted that the prince give him the swan. Then the prince said, “I am not going to give you the swan because it does not belong to you. If you disagree we will go to the king.” So Dev Dutta said, “Okay, we will go to the king.” As they approached the king, Dev Dutta said, “This is my swan and he took it from me. I shot it.” The prince gently said, “Your majesty, who would own the life of this swan, the one who protects her life or the one who takes her life?” The king was amazed at how he put it in that way. “Yes, prince, the one who protects her life.” Prince Siddhartha was not only compassionate, but also endowed with great wisdom. One day the prince thought that he might want to go out of the palace to see the world. So he asked his father's permission. The king was a little worried that

what the sage had predicted may happen. So the king ordered the whole city to keep everything neat and clean, and to make everything look pleasant. He told everyone, “The Prince is paying his first visit to the city.” The whole city was under control of the guards to make sure that everything was well prepared. The next day, the prince left in his beautifully decorated chariot and went into the city. As he went on, he saw a very old man, old just because of aging. Over the next three days he saw, respectively, a sick person, a woman shouting after having just given birth to a child, and then a dead body. This really bothered his mind, as he knew that these things were types of suffering. But then the last day, he saw a monk in robes meditating under a tree. The monk looked very peaceful and it appeared that his mind was calm. The prince started thinking and reflected, “Why is this monk at peace?” That is when Prince Siddhartha realized that there is no real essence in a life of enjoyment within cyclic existence. He saw so many different kinds of suffering in samsara. He saw that everything is impermanent in its nature. He realized that even if we have some happiness, it is so temporary. And the prince knew that these sufferings are not felt only by human beings, but also by all sentient beings, by every being born into the world. The prince contemplated for a long time and finally came to the decision that he must find the way out of this suffering for the benefit of all sentient beings. He believed that there must be a way, because he believed that every single phenomenon arises out of its specific causes and conditions in the relative world.8

This is the beginning of Shakyamuni Buddha's story. It will be continued in the next issue of this magazine. 7


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The Mother Palyul Monastery

excerpt from A Garland of Immortal Wish-fulfilling Trees*

I n

t h e c o o l , h i g h c o u n t r y of Tibet, which is the emanation field of the great Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara, there are three provinces. The first is the upper province of Töd Nga-Ri, which has three inner regions, like lakes of dharma. The second is the central province of Ü Tzang, with four regions, like dharma water canals, and the third is the lower province of Do Kham, having six regions, like vast dharma fields. The mother Palyul monastery is located in the lower province of Do Kham, in the region of Bubor. The dharma lord Tsangtön was known to have said, “I, the Buddhist Dorje Gyaltsen, will be reborn in the region of Bubor.” He was born in Tsamdo, which is within the region of Bubor.1 The Palyul monastery is situated between Pang Kang Chöling monastery, the seat of the Martzang

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Kagyud Lama Rinchen Lingpa and other great lamas, and Drulri Dragmar Dorje Dzong monastery, built by Labtön Namkha Rinchen. Behind the Palyul monastery is the supreme sacred place known as Lhanyen Paldzom Dorje Dradul. Above, to the east, is the place blessed by Garab Dorje, called Dago Odsal Lhari. To the south is the sacred waterfall of Chu Sangwai Drag, a location as sacred as Lho Trag Kharchu, the sacred power spot of Padmasambhava. The Palyul monastery adjoins the place where the great treasure revealers, Sang-ngag Lingpa, Rinchen Lingpa and others revealed profound termas. To the west, the monastery is supported by the sacred practice place of Mugsang Drodul Trinley. When the bodhisattva princess of China, Gyaza Kanjo, was passing through Kham on her way to central Tibet, she inserted a staff into the ground, just below the


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site of the present Palyul monastery. From that spot, a bodhi tree, called changma racho, spontaneously appeared and remains there today. There is also a cave in this area where Lotsawa Berotsana entered into retreat before completing a journey to Gyamo-tsawai Rong (Gyarong). As he passed through the site of the present Palyul monastery, he inserted his staff into the ground and a juniper tree spontaneously appeared, which continues to grow there today. The Palyul monastery is built where the great Lama Kyere Chökyong Wangpo made his spiritual seat. Kyere Chökyong Wangpo was one of the two famous disciples of Lotsawa Ma Rinchew Chög (the other disciple was Tsugma Rinchen), both of whom were renowned practitioners of Maha Yoga. Even today, pilgrims can visit and receive blessings from the stupa erected by Kyere 2 Chökyong Wangpo, as well as his four-activities practice cave, which is located there. A prophecy of the Gyarong Tertön Sang-ngag Lingpa states, “The supreme place of the supreme lamas is found in the direction of Kathog. Through the Drichu River valley lies the sacred place of Vajrapani, known as Palyul. The sky resembles an auspicious silken tent-like umbrella and the earth abounds with auspicious, beautiful foliage. Vajra-like ravines encircle in all directions, the rock mountains are as black as charcoal, and at the base of the central mountain is a rich forest of trees. The rocks clearly display self-originating images of Vajrapani, as well as blue Hung syllables with radiating flames.” Both the unsurpassed practice cave of Yeshe Tsogyal and the Sangdag Secret Accomplishment3 cave of Padmasambhava are located here. The Termas Tempo Dondul Drubtab Kor Sum (The Three Cycle Accomplishment Practice to Subdue Fierce Demonic Forces), the Five Garudas Accomplishment practice, the Condensed Life Story of Padmasambhava, and a statue of Vajrapani and Padmasambhava were all buried here. Inexpressible signs of accomplishment and self-originating phenomena are apparent throughout the area. The unmistaken words of the Vajra prophecy also state, “At Nam-tsong rock (located in front of the Palyul monastery) thirteen secret termas have been concealed.” The mountain upon which the monastery is situated is unusually shaped, like a proud elephant. It is in this excellent place which, according to geomancy, possesses all the essential signs and where countless vidyadharas have blessed the ground with their sacred lotus feet, that the founding father, protector of all beings, Kunzang Sherab made his spiritual seat.8

At age 8, Migyur Dorje wrote a mantra using goat milk, which became etched into a boulder in the vicinity of Palyul monastery. After hundreds of years, it still remains clearly visible.

Notes: 1 Tsamdo is part of Palyul, located in the lower province of Dokham, and is one of the six regions called Bubor. This quote is included to further validate the location of the Palyul monastery in this sacred region. 2 “Four activities practice cave” refers to the place where Kyere Chökyong Wangpo practiced the generation of peaceful, extensive, powerful and wrathful activities, for the sake of developing methods which guide and liberate all sentient beings. 3 The Sangdag secret accomplishment cave is where Padmasambhava performed the secret accomplishment practice of Vajrapani, the keeper of the secret Mantrayana. *Reprinted from A Garland of Immortal Wish-fulfilling Trees, by Ven. Tsering Lama Jampal Zangpo, trans. by Sangye Khandro, pp. 33-34, with permission from Snow Lion Publications, Ithaca, NY, www.snowlionpub.com.

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Hardships in Dharma Practice

His Holiness Penor Rinpoche

I n

o r d e r t o h a v e ultimate realization of

the absolute true nature of mind, Dzogchen, the Great Perfection, one must depend upon the blessing of the lama, the guru. There is no other method. All the teachings given by Shakyamuni Buddha in the three turnings of the wheel of dharma and all the twelve branches of the teachings are mainly for the purpose of realizing the absolute true nature of mind. All of the nine yanas including Vajrayana teachings and all of the 6,400,000 Dzogchen teachings are mainly for the purpose of realizing the absolute true nature of phenomena. All the sutra teachings of the lesser vehicle, which practitioners carry out for three countless aeons of lifetimes, focus on the main point of realizing the absolute true nature of mind. The outer tantra teachings, which take sixteen or seventeen lifetimes of practice, the kriya yogacharya, which takes seven lifetimes of practice, and the upayoga teachings, which take three lifetimes of practice, are all given in order to help us realize the absolute true nature of phenomena, according to the Dzogchen. So by whatever method we choose to study, whether in a very extensive and vast way or in a very condensed way, all these teachings depend upon the establishment and realization of the true nature as the Great Perfection, the Dzogchen. If one studies a lot, one can have many volumes of teachings in one's mind, but if one has not realized the meaning of the Great Perfection, then one still cannot obtain complete enlightenment. The essence of all dharma teachings is concentrated on realizing the ultimate 10

meaning of the Great Perfection, the Dzogchen. One can have the realization of the ultimate, absolute true nature of phenomena, the realization of Dzogchen, through the supplication to one's root guru, whose essence appears as Guru Padmasambhava in the practice of Guru Yoga. Through one's devotion and the blessings of the master being connected together, one can realize the meaning of the Great Perfection. If there are fish in a pond, when we throw a net to catch fish, we can catch them. But if there are no fish in the water, then even though we throw our net, there is no way we can catch even a single fish. Similarly, in the practice of Guru Yoga, if one cannot maintain the words of honor, the samaya, in the proper way, then one cannot receive the lama's blessings. This is the result of the violation of the words of honor, or samaya. Also, if one does not have true devotion, then one cannot receive the blessings and will just continue to wander in samsara. There has never been a single person who has achieved complete enlightenment just by him or her self, not in all the countless aeons of past history. The Pratyekayanas or Pratyekabuddhas, the solitary realizers, lived in times when no Buddha's teaching existed in this world, but because of their insights and attainments in previous lifetimes, their aspiration prayers and their practices, these solitary realizers were able to attain arhat realization through their study and understanding of the twelve nidanas, the twelve links of interdependent origination. Yet even with this arhat realization, they did not fully attain complete enlightenment. Moreover, they can not really benefit other sentient beings much because


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their realization is still far from complete enlightenment. They are not yet able to liberate other beings from the suffering of cyclic existence. Now, about Guru Padmasambhava, I think you already know and understand that he is not just the historical person who once lived in India and Tibet. Guru Padmasambhava existed for many countless aeons before that time and had already attained enlightenment. Guru Padmasambhava is the manifestation of all the completely enlightened Buddhas of the past, present, and future. As the expression of the dharmakaya, sambhogakaya and nirmanakaya, Guru Padmasambhava manifested especially for the purpose of maintaining the dharmakaya teachings that are known as the Dzogchen, the Great Perfection. Shakyamuni Buddha mainly gave the teachings of the Vinaya, Sutra and Abhidharma, which are known as the Tripitaka, the Three Baskets or the Three Canons. When he gave higher tantric teachings or Great Perfection teachings, he had to manifest in the form of deities or herukas, and in this way he gave teachings in many other places also. Aeons ago, the Buddhas of the three times chanted the Seven Line Prayer. Because of that Guru Padmasambhava was born in the lotus and began to benefit sentient beings. Guru Padmasambhava comes to this earth mainly for the purpose of giving the Dzogchen Great Perfection teachings. For this reason he is blessed by all the past, present and future Buddhas. In each and every period of time, whenever there are followers or students for the Dzogchen Great Perfection, then these

Dzogchen teachings will be there for them. Guru Padmasambhava has been benefiting sentient beings in this way for countless aeons. In the period of time twenty-eight years after Shakyamuni Buddha passed into nirvana, countless millions of dakinis chanted the Seven Line Prayer to invoke Guru Padmasambhava. Because of that, Guru Padmasambhava manifested and was born in the lotus in the country called Orgyen. Before Guru Padmasambhava went to Tibet he lived in India for well over a thousand years. During that time, Guru Padmasambhava manifested in more than one form based on the needs of individual beings, and these different forms are known as the Eight Manifestations of Guru Padmasambhava. For example, during that time there were many thousands of great scholars at the famous Nalanda University. Nalanda University had four gates. Many great scholars and realized beings were always teaching and debating at each one. One day some five hundred non-Buddhist scholars came to Nalanda and said, “We want to debate with you. Then, depending on who wins the debate, everyone will have to follow that kind of religion. No one will be allowed to do any other kind of practice of his or her own.� These non-Buddhists were very great scholars and also had many miraculous powers. The Buddhist scholars at Nalanda University thought that they could defeat the non-Buddhists in debate but that they might have some problems in a contest of performing miracles. So the scholars were a bit worried, but one night almost all of them had the same

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kind of dream in which a dakini appeared and said, “You alone cannot defeat them. But if you will invite my great uncle who is in the charnel grounds of Jalandhara, he can help you to defeat them.” This charnel ground was a very scary place and there were no proper roads leading to it, so again the scholars became worried as to how they could go to invite the uncle. The dakini then said, “You can invite him by preparing a ganachakra puja offering and reciting the Seven Line Prayer.” So they piled up all different kinds of precious offerings for a ganachakra puja according to the instructions of the dakini, and started accumulating the Seven Line Prayer with full devotion, and after a while Guru Padmasambhava appeared. Guru Padmasambhava said, “You have called me here. Now what do you have to tell me?” They explained to him about the great debate that was going on between the Buddhists and nonBuddhists and that they had called him because they were not going to be able to win the contest by their own powers. The debate began and the Buddhist scholars carried through very well until the non-Buddhists began to perform their miracles, such as flying up into the sky and then sitting there doing all kinds of extraordinary activities. But Guru Padmasambhava also performed miracles, and his were much faster, greater and more powerful. In the end the non-Buddhists lost the debate and so they all became Buddhists. If Guru Padmasambhava had not been invited to Tibet it would have been very difficult for the Buddhadharma to flourish there. This was because in Tibet there were many local gods and spirits who were very powerful and who could do lots of miraculous and magical activities. When Guru Padmasambhava came, he challenged these local gods and spirits and overcame their powers and miracles, subduing each and every one of them. Then he gave them teachings and empowerment. They all offered themselves to Guru Padmasambhava and so became oath-bound to protect all the dharmas. The places where Guru Padmasambhava challenged the local gods and spirits and performed miracles can still be seen in Tibet. Another problem in Tibet at that time was that many of the king's ministers were Bonpos who did not like Buddhism. Guru Padmasambhava, by his power and his miracles and his teachings, was able to slowly convert these ministers so that they all became Buddhist followers. 12

Before the Dharma kings Songtsen Gampo and Trisong Detsen, there was a slight flourishing of Buddhadharma, but these local gods and spirits and negative ministers somehow kept it from being firmly established in Tibet. However, although there have been certain times of a slight degeneration of the dharma in Tibet, because Guru Padmasambhava's establishment of the dharma there was so complete, from the time Guru Padmasambhava arrived in Tibet and subdued all the negative forces so that everyone could follow the right Buddhadharma teachings until now, the Buddhadharma has never been destroyed in Tibet. So, although Guru Padmasambhava appears to us as having been born as a human being who then went around giving teachings, his true nature is beyond any birth and death. There are some people in Taiwan who say that they have some of Guru Padmasambhava's relics, but I don't think this is true because Guru Padmasambhava did not die. Instead, he flew from the mountain in Tibet known as Gungthangla to the CopperColored Mountain. And it is not as if only one or two people saw him leave in that way, either. The Tibetan king, his queens and ministers and multitudes of his subjects had all gone there to say farewell to Guru Padmasambhava, and they all saw him fly away to the Copper-Colored Mountain. There are relics of Guru Padmasambhava's clothes, however. Also, a great terton revealed some of Guru Padmasambhava's hair, which is in very small pieces shining with the five different rainbow colors of light. But most people cannot see this hair as it can only be seen through revelation. When one looks at Guru Padmasambhava, he appears to have a physical body, but in reality he does not have a solid, concrete body like ours. Until the Maitreya Buddha comes on this earth and until all of the one thousand Buddhas have come, Guru Padmasambhava will continue to appear and benefit each and every being who has karmic connections with him. There are those who have very negative karma who cannot understand or believe in the existence of Guru Padmasambhava at all, and there are also those few who say, “Oh, Guru Padmasambhava didn't really exist in that way.” We as practitioners must cultivate true belief and devotion by seeing our root guru in the aspect or form of Guru Padmasambhava, and then carry through chanting all the Guru Yoga prayers. If one has very strong devotion and perseveres with the practice of Guru Yoga, there are many who can,


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through this practice, achieve the realization of the absolute true nature of mind. That is why you need to carry through the practice of the Seven Line Prayer and Guru Yoga constantly and continually. We have this retreat for the practices of ngondro, tsa lung and Dzogchen, but every day we will do this Guru Yoga practice together and you should all do it in the proper way. Though right now you may be having some difficulty in carrying through these practices, you must understand that whatever difficulties or hardships you may have in practicing dharma are definitely purifying your obscurations and are therefore meaningful. Think of Jetsun Milarepa and how many hardships he went through for dharma practice. He endured those hardships for the purpose of realizing the absolute true nature of phenomena. The great Dzogchen master Longchen Rabjam also went through many hardships in his practices in order to have that realization. When he was receiving teachings from his master, the Kumaraja, the only thing Longchen Rabjam owned was a woolen sack. This sack served as his cushion, his clothing, his blanket, his bed and his shelter. He also had very little

food. Yet even living like this, he carried through with his practice in order to have mahasiddha realization. When one reads about how Longchen Rabjam lived in a tent and wrote all his many teachings, it may seem like he was enjoying some kind of luxury, but it was not really that way. The “tent” was that same woolen sack, into which he would crawl when he wrote all those teachings. In Tibet those woolen sacks are called “lawa” and in them we usually carry grain or other things. So Longchen Rabjam had only this one sack which served as both his tent and his clothing. In a similar way, all the past great vidyadharas and masters and practitioners went through many kinds of hardships in order to have great accomplishment. So if you have a little bit of difficulty or go through some hardships in your practice, don't think, “Oh, this is so difficult. I cannot really do this.” Don't think in that way; just try to have more diligence. Remember that what we really need to obtain is that ultimate result, Buddhahood. Without achieving this, we will not get beyond the endless suffering of samsara, or cyclic existence. All of these dharma teachings that you are receiv-

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ing are based on the Great Perfection, the Dzogchen, and they carry tremendous blessings. So carry through your practices properly, sincerely and with diligence, whether you are studying ngondro or tsa lung or the Dzogchen practices of thödgyal and tregchöd. Then you will not just continue wandering in samsara again and again, but will achieve the ultimate happiness, which is enlightenment. There is no real benefit in having so much grasping for and attachment to the many kinds of material things and pleasures of this world. You will never feel that your wishes are fulfilled in this way because worldly things can never satisfy you. For those of you who are practicing the tsa lung trulkhor exercise, there are many conditions as to whether your body can do it or not, but if you practice slowly, then slowly you will get better. Through consistent study and practice there is nothing you cannot accomplish. It is difficult to become perfected immediately, of course, so you just have to practice slowly and steadily. Don't think that you have to understand or achieve everything in your studies and practices right now. Instead try to be more far-sighted and slowly you will get better. The accomplishment of dharma practice does not happen within just a month or two, though of course it would be great if one could do that! But it is not so simple, and so one has to have lots of diligence to carry on. Remember that all the great masters and realized beings of the past spent their whole lifetimes carrying through their practices in order to have this kind of realization, so you should understand that having some realization within a few months or even a few years is very rare. If you think, “Oh, I want to do everything very fast and accomplish all these practices very quickly,” then you will push yourself too hard and you will create obstacles for yourself. Your body will resist and your mind will become completely tired. Then you may start to think, “Oh, this dharma teaching does not have any power and there is no real benefit from it,” so you decide to give up on everything, but then you will only have many more problems. That is why it's important to relax a bit and just have the perseverance to carry through the practices with diligence and continuity. Always it is most important that you watch your thoughts and examine your mind. All these dharma teachings we are giving are not as important as just looking into yourself, examining your mind, watching what your mind is thinking and what you are doing. It is more important for you to turn inward, to examine your mind and see what negative thoughts are arising, what virtuous 14

thoughts are arising, and with what volition they are arising, and then to correct yourself. As regards your dharma practice, the most important point is to become master of yourself, to tame your own mind, and to really subdue it. You cannot accomplish the dharma by looking at other worldly people and saying, “Oh, this person is doing this and that person is doing that, and this is right and that is wrong.” That kind of thinking is just the nature of our ordinary worldly mind. If instead we turn inward and watch what we ourselves are thinking and what we ourselves are doing, and if we continue examining in that way until our minds become pure and devoted and sincere, then we will be having some real dharma practice. I am always saying to you that for the dharma you need to have devotion, inclination and faith, and that you should get rid of wrong views, hesitations and doubts. It is also important to try to slow down and subdue whatever kinds of afflictions arise in your mind. You cannot do this if, when you give rise to any kind of afflicted mind or negative emotion, you just let it happen without applying an antidote. From beginningless time until now we have been overpowered by the afflicted mind and that is how we came to be wandering in this cyclic existence. So when you examine your mind and see that these negative emotions are arising, and you realize what the result of that is, then you have to try to subdue the afflicted mind by seeing that it is just emptiness. For example, if you give rise to a strong desire, then you need to examine the nature of that desire, to examine the mind itself in which that desire is arising, and also to examine the external object that is giving rise to that desire. If you examine and analyze these in a proper way, then everything can be established into emptiness. Hatred and anger and all the other afflictive emotions are the same. When you look and see the nature of afflicted mind, then you can subdue it and get rid of these negative emotions. Otherwise these negative emotions and the afflicted mind will just continue to be the cause to wander endlessly in samsara. Likewise, no matter how we may accumulate all kinds of material belongings, as long as we have that grasping kind of need in our minds we will never find satisfaction. Mind itself is emptiness and there is not anything there that can be filled up. If mind was a kind of matter or physical object, then it could be filled up. If it was, for example, like our temple here, then if we started


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putting more and more stuff here and there, after some time it would become completely full and then we would have to keep some things outside! But the mind is emptiness, so no matter how we may try, there is no way it can be filled up like that. That is why it is important to develop a sense of contentment or satisfaction in life. There is a story about the Sakya Pandita when he traveled to China to teach the emperor there. The Chinese emperor asked him, “Who is the richest person in your country? Who has the most bravery in fighting against enemies? And who has the most powerful skills in speech?” The Sakya Pandita replied that the bravest person in fighting against enemies was known as Milarepa. This was because Milarepa had completely subdued the inner enemy, which is the afflicted mind, and had realized that there was no outer enemy. Then the Sakya Pandita said that the richest per-

son in Tibet was known as Kharag Gomchung. This master, Kharag Gomchung, had just a small bag of tsampa (barley flour), but he would insist, “Oh, I am very rich. I have lots of tsampa, so now I am completely satisfied,” and then he would just carry on constantly with his practice. Since he had that sense of satisfaction, he didn't have any need for anything more. He had no intention or inclination to try to accumulate things or fill things up. When you have that kind of satisfaction or contentment then you are really the richest person, and if you don't have that kind of satisfaction then you will always be poor. It is very important to develop that kind of satisfaction in your minds and to be content. Lastly, the Sakya Pandita said that the one with the most skillful speech was himself. This was because the Sakya Pandita knew all the sutras and tantras and dharma teachings.8

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Day-To-Day Buddhism Khen Rinpoche Tsewang Gyatso

T h e

g e n e r a l B u d d h i s t teaching on practice in our day-to-day life is very profound and also very vast. We have many different levels of practice, as taught in the scriptures of Shakyamuni Buddha and all the great scholars and masters of India and Tibet who composed all the treatises on practice. We will now condense how we should follow these practices in a gross way. How the path, or the practice, is followed can be divided, based on vows, into three. And the highest of these three practices can be divided into two. The actual practice is based on the vows: how you make a vow, how you can really be committed, and, on making a commitment that you want to do a practice, how to do that practice. Buddhism, the practice itself, has as its basis mind training, that is, how to train your mind and, at the same time, verbally and physically discipline yourself. So, in one way, the whole, complete practice is condensed into two parts: how to have the proper mind training, and how to discipline your speech and your physical body according to that mind training. In that way the whole, complete practice follows. When one has mind training, one becomes serious enough to take a vow. According to that vow, you can discipline yourself to carry through the practice with your verbal actions and your physical actions. Concerning the vows then, first there are the pratimoksha vows according to the lesser vehicle, the Hinayana. Then there are the bodhisattva vows according to the greater vehicle, the Mahayana. And third there are the Vajrayana vows according to the tantric practice. Within the tantra, there

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are the outer tantra and the inner tantra; based on that, there can be inner tantric vows and outer tantric vows. So one can commit to following an actual, serious practice based on these three vows, and one can train oneself based on the view. The complete practice can be condensed into intention, view, meditation, and behavior. First is the intention. The intention includes your motivation and your attitude towards all these spiritual practices, an attitude of compassion towards all beings and renunciation towards cyclic existence. It is upon this that you should base your intention. Second is the view: how you can understand the nature of cyclic existence, that is, the nature of the external world and of internal living beings, and how you can obtain that right view. With that view, the practice follows according to how you can do proper meditation, and whether you can maintain the view with a fully concentrated mind through the meditation practice. That is how one can get actualized with mind training and the discipline of verbal and physical actions. The third component of practice is meditation. And after meditation comes behavior, or discipline. Discipline includes three types of discipline: discipline of the mind, discipline of the speech and discipline of the physical body. Whatever practice we do, whatever sorts of actions we do in this world, everything is based on one's body, speech and mind. The way that we will explain discipline or behavior here is how, as a spiritual practice and path, we can discipline our body, speech and mind in our day-to-day life.


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As one follows a basic practice, one's intention, view, meditation, and behavior or discipline are called the causes and conditions. All sorts of phenomena, whatever we produce, whatever arises or exists, all have to depend on their own specific causes and conditions. When causes and conditions are assembled properly, one can definitely have fruition, a result that one can experience. To follow the complete practice based on the lesser vehicle, you must engage in these four actions: you must involve your intention, view, meditation and discipline. The result will be your fruition. According to the Mahayana, the greater vehicle, you must also watch the nature of your intention in your day-to-day life. You need to have a pure intention by generating Bodhicitta, and the view as ground to establish an emptiness nature. Your practice through the path of meditation and right discipline will lead to fruition. In Vajrayana practice, first you receive the Vajrayana vows, which are divided into four according to the four major divisions of tantra. The first three are outer tantras and the last one is the inner tantra. According to these tantras, the practice of the path involves the establishment of the view, the manner of the practice of the path through meditation, and in what way one maintains the discipline to actualize the fruition. In that way, we carry through practice in our day-to-day lives. With each of these, with intention, view, meditation and discipline and also with fruition, there are a lot of detailed explanations. In the Hinayana, the lesser vehicle, there are lots of things to study and to understand in order to really follow the path. It is the same with the

Mahayana and the Vajrayana teachings and explanations and instructions: these are very vast and very profound. But here I will explain them in a more condensed way so we can get into the complete teaching, however vast and profound it is. The purpose of condensing these four divisions is so that we can do the practice in our day-to-day lives. In relation with this, we have these four paths to follow: the lesser vehicle, the Mahayana, the Vajrayana outer tantra, and the inner tantra paths. It is not necessary to do all four practices of the four levels to become liberated or to attain enlightenment. One's practices are based on one's own internal causes and conditions, on one's potential, and on what sorts of individual capability one has based on this relative life. Ultimately, every single sentient being has the right potential. Everyone has that Buddha nature, or that Christ nature; basically, there is no difference. Everybody can follow the path and anyone can attain enlightenment if one just follows the path seriously and continuously and with diligence and perseverance. If one continues to do the practices, it is certain that anyone can attain enlightenment. But, based on these four vows and practices and within this lifetime, what sorts of potential one has or what level of mind one has or what kind of faculty is within one's self determines one's practice, for instance, whether one has a very sharp faculty, a medium faculty, a lower faculty, or the lowest faculty. At the same time, you practice naturally based on how your mind fits into these practices, and which sorts of practice you would like. One thing to remember is that not everyone

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needs to start with a certain practice. For example, one might follow only the Hinayana path. Still, each of these vows and practices has the complete causes and conditions and the whole complete path that can liberate one from the suffering of cyclic existence. Every single path has that. In a way, all human beings are looking for some kind of spiritual practice, some kind of spiritual support. That is why we follow all kinds of prayers and worship and practices. Why do we have to look into a spiritual path? And why do we follow a religion? It is mainly because each of us, every sentient being or practitioner, every human being, somehow wants to get rid of every kind of suffering. We all want to get rid of suffering and wish to obtain real happiness. We do not want to experience any sort of suffering, pain, problems, emotions or depressions. We want to be always very happy, peaceful and prosperous, to live in luxury and be healthy. As regards that intention or motivation, there is no difference among sentient beings. And this is true not only for human beings. Even the insects, cockroaches and mosquitoes, and all these scary animals like poisonous snakes and tigers are all the same. Even these animals, like tigers that kill deer and so forth, do not want to have the suffering of starving to death. They want to have more food and they want to be healthy and happy, whatever their life spans are. They want to enjoy their lives. They do not want to experience any sorts of suffering, such as hunger and so forth. All sentient beings, all human beings, whatever sorts of culture, religion, faith, tradition or customs we may have, and wherever we may have been born, in whatever parts of the world, everybody in his or her own way in that respect is the same. For that reason, just to experience and to have a very, very enjoyable life, and to experience peace and happiness and to get rid of all this suffering and pain and so forth, for that purpose everybody is really looking for a spiritual practice. For that we try to believe in a religion. For that we try to follow a path. For that purpose we try to do all these prayers, worshiping, meditation and so forth. Not only that, but we do other sorts of exercise, such as all kinds of yoga exercises, thinking, “Oh, I may have better health or strength and a healthier life.” And then we go to all sorts of gyms for training. By doing this our intention is to have a better body, like a body builder, and to be healthier and better looking. But also we are just looking for some kind of happiness, to experience some kind of joy and peace. It is the same for whatever sorts of sports or education or trainings in songs and dances we 18

may participate in. This also includes our day-to-day jobs; why we are so busy is only to experience happiness and peace, a good life, and to experience some kind of freedom. No single person wants to experience any sorts of pain or suffering. That is not why we stay so busy, but it is the whole reason why we are so busy in our daily life. Sometimes we do not even have time to eat properly; that is how busy we make ourselves. So, anyhow, our whole intention is to answer the question, “How can we liberate ourselves from the suffering of cyclic existence?” In cyclic existence, or samsara, if such things exist that we call suffering, pain, problems or depression, then we might think we want to be liberated from them. It is for that purpose that one must follow a spiritual practice. But as we follow a spiritual practice, it must be something based on reality; whatever sort of path it is, it has to be in accordance with reality. In reality one must understand how things can change, how things can develop and can get better with any kind of spiritual path or practice. A path must be based on valid cognition by which one can know in a logical way, according to reality and the nature of truth, the nature of the path itself, which must be in accordance with the truth. We can only liberate through spiritual practice, because that is the only truth. According to the Hinayana path, one's first intention is to understand the suffering of cyclic existence, the experience of all sorts of suffering. The moment we know how much suffering there is, we want to be liberated from it. That motivation results in renunciation of this world because you see there is so much suffering, so many problems and so much difficulty that you say, “I don't even want to be in this kind of world and I don't want to be reborn again in this world.” One must have a renounced mind through which one can completely dedicate to and concentrate on practice, so that one can be really liberated. The intention is not so much involved with benefiting all sentient beings. “At least I want to be liberated from this suffering. Besides that, I might possibly benefit my family, or my neighbors, or my community,” or whomever else one might want to help. But, because there is no strong involvement in the greater intention to benefit all sentient beings, it is very limited. In this case, one's compassion is not necessarily great; it is a limited compassion, a limited loving-kindness. But still, based on that, one has an intention to be liberated, and to benefit others. So, starting with that intention, the real practice is based on the view. View is the crucial point of all the


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teachings and is based on the nature of reality, on truth, and especially on the “absolute truth.” The absolute truth is always more difficult to understand, difficult to believe and difficult to actualize on a particular path. But that does not mean that we cannot realize it. The view, according to the Hinayana path, is realizing the emptiness of self. It is called “emptiness of self” because the whole problem of suffering, however we might experience it in our daily life, is due to attachment and self-cherishing. We are so attached to our own selves; we are always so concerned about ourselves, and because of that we concentrate on cherishing ourselves, rather than even our own family, friends, relatives or any other person. That is the main cause of our rebirth in samsara and at the same time, it is why we experience all these kinds of problems and suffering. That is the main reason. So it is upon this that one must study: Why is self-cherishing, or self-attachment, the cause of suffering? Why? There are very detailed explanations of this, and until you really understand it exactly according to the true nature, until then, Buddhist teachings never stop. Whatever sorts of questions arise in relation to that, there is an answer that makes you understand. It is not some kind of dictatorship or a command that you have to believe this. No one is saying, “You better believe this.” It is not like that. Rather it lets you understand. It explains everything to you. You have your own mind to judge it. Examine, analyze, and get into a kind of study of these questions: How is it that self-cherishing or self-attachment in our daily life is the cause of suffering? And how does it cause rebirth in samsara? One can examine this, and when one understands it, when it is clear to oneself, then one can accept that it is true. One needs a valid logic, a valid cognition. It is not like you must believe what Buddha taught. It is not necessary to believe in that way. You just need to use your whole, complete intellect, your wisdom, and whatever skills or methods you have to examine it. When you understand that the cause of all these problems is self-attachment, then, how do you get rid of it? The only antidote is to realize the emptiness of self. Again, this too, the emptiness of self, is explained. There are complete teachings and explanations with many different reasons and examples. It becomes very clear with these explanations. And so, emptiness of self is the view. Having that view, you apply it as a practice with meditation. You concentrate your mind on the emptiness of self. As you continue with that meditation practice, as your meditation

comes along and becomes more effective and you practice continually with diligence and perseverance, then one day you will have the direct perception and the direct experience of the emptiness of self, or selflessness. You will really have that realization. And the moment you have that realization, then the concepts and afflicted mind and negative emotions and attachment to the self will be instantly gone. The whole concept or thought of grasping at self will just disappear. It is like when there is light, the darkness is gone. Darkness has no strength or power to stay there. That way you purify or abandon ignorance and you gain wisdom, that sense of insight, that sense of enlightening in relation with the true nature of self. When you accomplish that practice, then naturally all afflicted minds are also purified so there is no way you could do any sort of negative action. You are not going to accumulate any sorts of karma. That is the view and meditation. While you are carrying through this meditation practice, until you reach that realization, what you have to follow as your discipline or behavior is simply to understand of the law of karma. However, the understanding of the law of karma in all its complexity is, again, so vast. Karma is related to all phenomena. Wherever you go, wherever you stay, whatever you do, even if you are here, you have karma related with this place. Say you move from here to California, that you are involved with that kind of karma. When you are in California, whatever sort of environment that exists is karma, including the weather, and including your friends and neighbors. Sometimes there are all kinds of problems. You do not do anything wrong to anyone, but people do not like you, it seems for no reason. All this has to do with karma, one's own karma. Why, if you are in California and there are all these people with whom somehow you are not getting along, did you have to move there in the first place? Why did you move there? Why didn't you stay here where you have a better place? It is your karma. When it ripens, it makes you move there. There are certain conditions arising: you get a job, or you like it there, or you have some problem or do not like it here, or something else happens, and then you move to California. And then you are there and you are involved with all these kinds of karma. That is how it ripens. And then after a while you think, “Oh, California, is not so good. Maybe I'll just move to Hawaii. I hear good things about Hawaii. It must be better for me. It must be a very beautiful place. I will try to get a job there and I will get connected somewhere there.” Then, your intention, motivation, and your 19


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whole energy are toward moving. And then you move to Hawaii, and Hawaii seems okay. You think, “Oh, this is better than California. It seems that people are nicer, better, people are good to me. I like it here.” You may like it. That is also your karma. It is not that people are good in some places and bad in other places. It is not like that. Your karma determines how you are involved. Your karma determines how you move from place to place. Some people think, “Oh, I have been here twenty years. 20

Now I really wish to go somewhere else. I really wish to move somewhere else, like Colorado. There's snow, and there are mountains; it seems like it is good. I think I want to go.” But when your karma is not ripened, then you never move. Whether you believe it or not, whether you understand it or not, karma is such a thing. It is a kind of reality, a kind of nature. Whatever we do has its own consequences. And all those consequences and all those


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results are not all ripening at the same time. Some ripen at this time, some ripen a few years later, some ripen many years later, some ripen in the next life, and some ripen in several lifetimes. In that way, there are all kinds of causes and conditions. According to how we accumulate them and how we assemble them, they bear all kinds of fruit. That is why discipline, or behavior, what you do, follows the law of karma. In consideration of the law of karma, you try to avoid any harmful deeds, any sorts of negative deeds. Try to abandon those, and maintain anything that is virtuous whenever possible. So it is condensed into virtue and non-virtue. Virtue and non-virtue are not only physical things. Virtuous actions occur in relation to your body, speech and mind. And at the same time, non-virtuous things also occur in relation to your body, speech and mind. Whatever sorts of actions we do will be something. Some are virtuous, some are non-virtuous, some just neutral. Neutral action is okay. It does not have any kind of consequences. The only thing is that it more or less wastes time. It does not bring any kind of fruition or result. But anything that is virtuous or non-virtuous has its own consequences. Virtue has the consequence of something positive, such as happiness, prosperity or something that we like. Non-virtuous consequences are always something negative, like suffering, problems, difficulties, emotions, depression, and all sorts of negative things. That is why, as a discipline or behavior, in your day-to-day life, you can maintain mindfulness to not create any sorts of harmful deeds based on mental, verbal and physical actions. Try to concentrate on mindfulness. And you should try to accumulate virtuous things, positive things, through your thoughts and your verbal and physical actions. In that way one tries to discipline oneself. In the beginning, of course, it is not easy for any one of us to always concentrate on doing something virtuous. It is difficult because we are not trained in that way. We do not have that kind of long term practice. We do not have the habitual tendency to naturally do something virtuous. We do not have that, and that is why we need to work hard on it. So how can we act in a more virtuous way? For that, first one must have a sense of mindfulness in one's day-to-day life. Whatever you do, including working at your job or driving your car, you have to be mindful. If you are driving and you are not mindful, and somebody cuts in front of you, then something bad can happen. So, mindfulness training is very important. It is

not necessarily a kind of meditation, rather a sense of awareness. Whatever you are doing, you need to have awareness at that moment. Mindfulness, or awareness, is not just something that you have to take care of for a long time. It is not that complicated a thing. It is just in the present moment. In the present moment, whatever you are doing, you must be mindful and have awareness. For example, if you are cooking and cutting vegetables, you have to be mindful, or otherwise you will cut your finger. You must have mindfulness at that moment. Sometimes you may be cutting vegetables and thinking about something else and, when there is no mindfulness, you do something wrong. Then you cut your finger, and of course you have some pain. You get so frustrated and so angry; you start throwing everything, and then you start yelling at your family. You say, “I'm not going to cook. This is always a problem.” You burst into anger and then there is no way you can experience something good. So mindfulness is necessary in the present moment. When you are doing practice, you have to have mindfulness as well. When you are doing practice, you are thinking, “Oh, I have to go shopping at Wal-Mart. I need to buy this. I need to get that for my, oh, birthday celebration, something for that or something for the weekend.” And then? You are sitting there but your mind is wandering into those malls. Then there is no real practice. Your mind is in those malls, sometimes you even see your friends, and you are just talking there. Your mind is getting afflicted there. So, however much you think you're doing, “OM AH HUNG, Om Ah Hung, om ah hung…,” after some time you start thinking about all of these other things. And then, no matter how many mantras you chant, it is not effective or useful. It is just wandering. When you are doing meditation practice, you have to have your mind there. When you are working, you have to have your mind there. Whatever you do in your day-to-day life, you must have that mindfulness in the beginning. With mindfulness, what you watch is your body, speech and mind. There are not a million things you have to watch at the same time, only your body, speech and mind, things that are within yourself. It is not like your body is in California, your mind is in New York, and your speech is somewhere in Maryland. If that were so, then you would be right to ask, “How can I possibly do this? In these different places? It is such a problem. How can I take care of that?” But your mind and body are not somewhere else. They are always with you. And you are the only one who can really watch yourself, and watch 21


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whether you are doing something right or wrong. Not even the teachers, not even enlightened beings can be there every moment, saying, “Oh, now you're thinking wrong. You should not do that. Oh, now you're saying something non-virtuous. Oh, now you're doing something wrong.” That is not possible. Even though these enlightened being are there, we cannot communicate with them because of our obscurations. So, you yourself have the whole responsibility for whether you have a better world or a better life or not. It is within yourself. At the same time, when one becomes more perfected, one has the responsibility to make things more happy and peaceful for one's family, friends, neighbors and colleagues, and the community and so forth. When there is one good person in a society, it can really help to guide everything, saying, “Oh, we don't think in this way. We're trying to do something beneficial.” That way, people can understand and there is a sense of following something better, something more positive and virtuous. And when there is one, single bad guy, then that disturbs the whole community, even the whole nation. That is just reality. We Buddhists are not making this up. It is not just something that we believe. It is the reality as we have seen throughout history. When there is somebody who is very capable, positive, and virtuous, for example, a kind and compassionate king, then there is always prosperity and happiness. And when there is a bad person ruling, then there are problems. Similarly, in a small group, or in a family, each and every individual being is responsible for our own life and world. So, based on mindfulness, on watching one's body, speech, mind whenever possible, try to avoid negativities and do what is virtuous. Whatever is worthwhile, useful, and beneficial to all sentient beings is what we must bring into our practice. You have to understand that all sentient beings are the same as yourself. That is taught in Buddhism, and in many other religions. In the Bible it says the same thing. We can understand the essence of all religions, based on its reality, based on its truth, and based on its nature. So, the intention in Mahayana is based on how we can always train our mind. There are a lot of types of mind training. We know compassion is good, and that loving-kindness is good, and we want to be practicing that way; we want to be like that. But if we do not have mind training, it does not happen in that way. Mind training is just thinking, “Oh, all sentient beings are the same as myself and when they have problems, suffering and pain, they do not like it. And it is the same with myself. When 22

I treat them with loving kindness, they like it. And it is the same with me. Whatever I wish is the same thing that all sentient beings wish.” In that way we train to generate compassion and loving kindness all the time; we have that intention. The training comes from having that intention, contemplating on it, meditating on it, practicing on it, and applying those reasonings on how important it is to always generate compassion and loving-kindness. We also need to have awareness. It is through awareness that we can carry that practice in our day-to-day lives, and how we can see others with a sense of love and compassion, nicely, how we can talk with compassion and loving kindness, how we can act with compassion and loving kindness, how we can feel with compassion and loving kindness, and how we can maintain them in our day-to-day lives. There are certain moments when anyone can be in a bad mood because of some problems. Then this person might yell at you, criticize you, be angry at you, or ignore you. Instantly, according to the Bodhicaryavatara (The Bodhisattva Way of Life) teachings, you have to understand that this person has a problem. “That is why he's angry or frustrated or ignoring me.” We should not just blame him. “Oh, I'm being nice and compassionate and this person doesn't even notice my compassion, doesn't even say, 'Hi,' and he's ignoring me. Well, if you don't care, I don't care.” When it's like that, there is no practice. So, we should subdue our ego. Because, based on reality, ego is a problem. Pride is a problem. None of the great beings have that ego. You can also train yourself to be very humble, noble and kind, however much you can subdue your ego. But when you develop your ego, your pride, when you think you are great, then you are creating many problems. When you show your ego, even your family does not like it. Even your children do not like it because there is some kind of negative energy. Ego is something negative. And then the other person also has that ego, and the two egos become stronger and stronger. When both egos clash with each other, it becomes a big problem. Nothing good can happen from that. But when one tries to be more humble and nice and tries to subdue one's ego, even a stranger would like it. Even if he does not know anything about you, he will like it. It has that kind of quality. So we should subdue our ego and only generate compassion and loving kindness based on that intention. This intention, according to Mahayana, is very


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important…very important. We should live with this practice in our day-to-day lives. If you have compassion and loving kindness, and, based on that, your body, speech and mind are governed by compassion and loving kindness, then you are always going to have some kind of positive results and all the consequences will be something good. In this lifetime, even in this present moment, you may not be appreciated, or you may not be thanked for being compassionate and loving. But you will get a good result from the good things you do. You will get those kinds of consequences whether somebody appreciates you or not. No matter whether somebody feels grateful to you or not, your result, something positive, something virtuous, will always be there, based on the law of karma. No one can destroy that. No one can steal it. No one can exchange it. No one can do anything to it. The result will be that one day you will gain that result. That is how in reality or in nature things are working. But we do not always know that. Since we do not have a deeper understanding about it, then when somebody shows us anger, we also show anger. And this causes a problem. When you mix anger with anger, there is no way anything can be pacified. When anger and anger attack each other, the result is always something destructive. But when someone has anger and you have compassion, then there is a way that you can subdue that person's anger. When somebody is negative and you are more positive, then there is a way you can pacify things. When positive and negative are put together, they become more harmonious. Two negatives or two positives, like an electrical charge, burst apart by their nature. Something is wrong in that situation. Anger, hatred, jealousy, impatience and whatever other sorts of negative emotions that may arise from any side can only be pacified through generating compassion and loving-kindness. This is true especially in our worldly life, like between husband and wife. From both sides, how can we understand this Buddhist teaching and apply it into practice? When the husband is angry, the wife has to be more patient, more loving, more compassionate, and take everything. Just be patient and in that way you can help pacify your husband's anger. Similarly, when the wife is angry, so frustrated, agitated, and bursting into so many things, yelling at you, then you must be compassionate. Just be patient. “Okay, today you have a problem. I don't mind. You yelled at me, but it's fine, okay?” Still, generate compassion and loving kindness, being nicer. You say, “Oh, Honey, you have a problem. Okay, this is fine, you know? I will help you. Whatever I can do, I will help you.

Just don't worry. Just relax.” She may say, “This is all your fault. You did everything and that is why I'm having all this trouble.” But, still, you take it: “Okay, it's my fault. I'm the cause of this problem. That's fine.” That way you can subdue your ego. Just say, “It's fine. It's my problem. I'm sorry. I apologize. I want to ask forgiveness. I will not make this mistake again. So now you can relax and not be so angry.” And when you apologize and ask for forgiveness, when you say you are really sorry and take all the blame for yourself, then, of course, there is no choice but to be relaxed. That way you can understand and practice, and also help others. If you say, “I didn't do any kind of wrong thing. I am correct and I'm only doing the right thing. This is not my fault. I didn't ask you to do this. I didn't… This is what you created.” Then there is no way. When somebody is shouting at you and you shout back, when somebody shows anger and you show anger, then it bursts into all kinds of destruction. Then you say, “If you don't care, I don't care,” and then you bang the door and just go. You say, “Oh, it seems like we're not going to get along. Okay, that's fine! If you don't care for me, I don't care for you, and we'll just get a divorce.” And then there are all these divorce problems. That is how it happens, by not understanding each other's problems. How can we live harmoniously even as only two persons? We can, just by being loving, being kind, and being nice. Just take the thought, “This is my husband,” or “This is my wife.” Take it as something that is yours. That way you can take care of each other in a better way. That way, you will naturally have a more happy life. That is how we can follow this kind of practice. However much we study and know, if we do not apply these practices even within the family, or if we cannot take the anger of only one person, how can we take the anger of all sentient beings? It is just impossible. In this way, we can train our minds so that when somebody is going through problems, one can take it easy, and be patient, compassionate and loving. It is the same between parents and children. How can they understand each other? You need a sense of being truly loving as a parent and as a child, not just showing your egos to each other. How can you really understand that, when your parents are yelling at you? You should think that these are people who want to benefit you, who want to help you, and who want to correct you. So that way, you understand, “Oh, my parents are saying something for my own benefit.” Whether it is really for your benefit or not, if you understand that it is 23


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intended for your benefit, then you can generate more compassion and loving kindness. Then there is a way for parents to become more compassionate and more loving to you. It is the same when children yell at their parents. Also, parents, for that moment, just take it. It is okay, whether the parent has done anything wrong or not. However blame comes, just take it. Be patient. Just think, “Anyhow, this is my child. This is my child, my son or my daughter. I have this relationship so I must take care of it.� When you really love somebody and you have a problem with him or her, it is okay to just take all the blame. Just be compassionate and loving. Just showing a sense of love and loving is how you can really care for somebody's problems and how you can be there to help that person and understand his or her problems. That is the way it must be between children and parents, between sisters and brothers, between friends and between neighbors. When that kind of practice is developed within one's mind, then with any other person, any other being, one can also be more compassionate and more loving. One's mind, having that kind of training, naturally becomes more virtuous, more compassionate, more loving and more kind. This naturally develops. When it develops to a greater degree, one can naturally take any sort of problem with a very broad mind, not a narrow mind or small mind with which it is so difficult to take even a small problem. One's mind will become a very big mind, a very broad mind that can handle anything. That is what we have to learn through all this practice. It is not that the practice is there and our day-today lives are somewhere else. That way will not work. To develop that practice in our day-to-day lives, we need this training. It takes sitting down and thinking about compassion and loving kindness toward all beings, and then in relation with that, what kind of specific practices one can do that will help to make oneself stronger and stabilize one's compassion and loving kindness. Within that practice, all practices are condensed. It is something that is always virtuous. When you are being compassionate and loving, then you are naturally virtuous. You are not creating any kind of negative karma. Then the view is something more profound and more difficult. This is the Mahayana view, which tells us how to view all phenomena and how to understand the existence of this whole universe. The view is how one understands the true nature of phenomena. It is the nonduality of interdependent origination with emptiness. All phenomena, everything, whatever exists in this whole world, even one elemental particle, are dependent. 24

Everything is interrelated. Everything is dependently originated. There is no phenomenon that is inherently independent or inherently existing. No single phenomenon. Everything is dependent by its nature. That view is very vast, relating to the whole of phenomena, and at the same time it is so subtle and profound. That is the truth. That is reality. The more you examine interdependent origination, the deeper it will become and it will make more and more sense. That way, you will really open your nature of mind. You will develop your wisdom. You will develop your intellect. You will develop your experience and perception relating to all phenomena. Interdependence is like your web site. Your web site is interconnected with web sites in all parts of the world, and your e-mail messages travel all over the world through the Internet. They are interconnected and dependent. Similarly, relative phenomena, whatever exists and appears, arise from an interdependent origination. Even the most recent discoveries or inventions also depend on interdependent origination. In a thousand million billion years, if anything still exists, it will also have an interdependent origination. So, whatever happens is based on interdependent origination. There is no way anyone can argue that the reality of phenomena is not based on interdependent origination. No one can say this is not right, because it is reality. It is the nature of relative phenomena, that everything is dependent in that way. We have to understand and perceive phenomena in that way; all phenomena are dependent on their certain causes and conditions, they are dependently arising. There is no single phenomena, no entity that exists with inherent true nature, that exists independently. There is no such phenomenon in this whole universe, including our minds, sensations, our body and the external world‌ everything. The true nature of phenomena is that of emptiness. Its nature is emptiness because it does not have an inherent existence or any independently existing entity. Because it has the nature of emptiness, it is interdependently originated. That is why all relative phenomena arise from interdependent origination but at the same time have the nature of emptiness. Because everything is empty in nature, there is no single phenomenon existing with true nature, or independent existence. That is why everything is emptiness. Emptiness and interdependent origination do not contradict; they are not opposite things. They are very harmonious, not only harmonious but so close that they are actually inseparable in nature, indivisible in nature. That is the view. That is how we view


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and think, “Oh, this is all arising through interdependent origination but still its nature is emptiness.” That is how we can view the relative world as an illusion. When anything does not have true existence, then it is something like an illusion. With that view, then even if good things happen or bad things happen, you do not get too excited or too depressed, because regardless of how it appears, it is illusory in its nature. There is a sense of relaxing yourself. Even if somebody insults you, what does it really matter when it is just illusion? And when somebody praises you, “Oh, you are just great,” or “You're enlightened,” or “You are just perfect,” even then, what does it really matter when someone praises you so much, because it is still an illusion? That way, when somebody praises you, you do not get so excited. And when somebody insults you, you do not get depressed. You can just abide in the middle. Then, based on your intention, whatever kind of benefit you can do, whatever help you can give, still generating compassion and loving-kindness and being nice to all beings, there is the practice. With non-duality of interdependent origination and emptiness as the view, then there is the discipline: the six perfections as the Mahayana practice. Based on your intention, you can be generous with

whatever is needed by anybody. But it is also based on whether you are capable to be generous in that way or not. That is something that you have to understand. Sometimes practitioners fall into an extreme: “Oh, we are taught to be very generous, so I have to just offer this, offer that, or offer this.” And then finally one has nothing left, and after some time one needs something and one does not have it. And other people are supposed to also be practicing the same thing, being generous and giving you something, but maybe they do not do it, and one gets confused. “What is happening here? We all are supposed to be generous and all are supposed to be good to everybody. I did everything I could do and shared everything, but these guys are not taking care of me.” You see, there is not an immediate result from being generous, so then one has regret. “Oh, I should not have been doing that. I should not have taken it so literally. Now I have a problem. It is better to just find a job and take care of myself instead of taking care of all these beings. It doesn't seem that this is working.” Then one cannot understand. So do not fall into any extreme. Just do whatever is in your capability. Just do as much as you can do. That way you can develop slowly, slowly, slowly until you reach a certain kind of perfection. Being generous, one may not have instant results. One should not be jumping like that with25


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out having a clear understanding or one may get so tired and worn out that one cannot move ahead at all. It is not like that with generosity. Next there is the practice of moral conduct. In our day-to-day lives what is our moral conduct? Moral conduct is following whatever sorts of vows one has received, like pratimoksha vows, bodhisattva vows, Vajrayana vows, or inner Vajrayana vows. Whatever one has received is what one needs to maintain, what one needs to abandon, and what one needs to practice. The third is patience, which is part of one's behavior in one's day-to-day life. Whenever any sort of problem or difficulty arises, how can one be patient and relaxed and try to handle things slowly? That is the way we can get success. Being impatient, we really do not get anywhere and we do not get better results. That is the practice on patience. Fourth is diligence and perseverance toward all positive things. Sometimes we want to do practice but we do not have diligence. We do not have perseverance. We feel lazy. Then we say, “Oh, today I'm really tired. I'll do practice tomorrow. Or next weekend.” And then we say, “Maybe I'll practice next month. This month is so busy, you know, I have to handle…” In that way we become lazy 26

and there is no diligence or perseverance into our practices. And then we do not have the training to become stronger in our practices, even those that we can carry into our day-to-day lives. That explains diligence and perseverance. With one's behavior, one cannot necessarily get perfected in the beginning with all these six perfections. First we just enter into the six perfections. We do whatever we can do and train however we can train. That way we slowly, slowly get better. In this relative world, like children, we start with kindergarten, then progress to first grade, and then second grade, and so forth. From the beginning you do not study in the university. That is impossible, even for the enlightened Buddhas. Do you think that from the very beginning, from the moment Buddha started to practice, he got enlightened? No, it is not like that. Shakyamuni Buddha took three countless eons of lifetimes to have enough accumulations of merit and wisdom as the real cause and condition for his enlightenment. These accumulations of merit and wisdom were accumulated through the practice of six perfections, which he continued through all of those three countless eons of lifetimes. It did not happen just within that one lifetime; it took three countless eons. With that


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same farsightedness, we vow, “Until I attain enlightenment, I will never ever give up these practices. No matter if it takes a million lifetimes or a billion lifetimes.” With that kind of farsighted attitude, we should think, “Still I want to benefit all sentient beings, no matter whether they appreciate it or not, no matter whether they feel grateful or not. Still, I want to benefit these sentient beings because with these sentient beings, I can accumulate merit.” However much you think you are benefiting sentient beings, that is how much they are benefiting you. If there was no sentient being, then toward whom could you generate compassion? There would be no object toward which you could generate compassion. When there is no sentient being, then to whom will you generate loving kindness? And when one does not have those compassion and loving kindness trainings, then oneself cannot attain enlightenment, and one cannot attain liberation. So if these sentient beings, who are sometimes mean to you, were not there, then how can you possibly do your practice of patience? When somebody is always nice to you, there is not any practice of patience. Patience practice takes place when somebody is causing you problems. When somebody is doing something negative to you, insulting, criticizing, harming or saying something bad about you, behind your back or even in front of you, then you can say, “Oh, this is for me to practice on patience.” That is how you can understand how important these people are to you for your practice of patience. That is the bodhisattva path as explained in the Bodhicaryavatara. In all the sutras, it is explained in that way. In this way you can view all sentient beings as being the same as your teacher. They are examining how much patience you have. In this way one can carry through the behavior or discipline training of the six perfections, with that discipline and accumulation of merit and with the intention of being compassionate and loving and with that view based on reality. And then there is meditation. The actual meditation practice that you do is on the view, on emptiness and on interdependent origination. You meditate until you realize these and then the behavior follows. With this meditation you will accumulate merit and wisdom through which you can attain enlightenment. According to inner tantric practices, one also generates compassion, loving kindness and bodhicitta to attain enlightenment for the benefit of all sentient beings. For that purpose, whatever one does, one applies practice

based on the tantric view. Now the views are getting higher and clearer and more profound. Now you view all sentient beings as deities. Try to have that pure perception. All sentient beings are like deities and samsara is like a Buddhafield. You are also one of those deities. Try to have the intention of a deity, to perceive as a deity, act as a deity, behave as a deity, meditate as a deity and do all things as a deity. There is no way an enlightened deity can do anything negative, or can harm anybody, or can have any kind of negative projection toward anybody. You cultivate that kind of pure perception: that everything is pure by its nature. Based on that, practice the view that all phenomena in the relative world, all things, are by their nature pure enlightened beings. According to their true nature, again, their nature is that of emptiness. That is why non-duality of awareness and emptiness is one's view. You need to have awareness of perceiving everything as pure and perfect and having been accomplished as a deity. For that purpose, your actual meditation practice in Vajrayana consists of concentrating on the generation stage of the deity and completion stage of the deity. You accumulate the mantras, concentrating on oneself as a deity, and then you project everything as the deity, all appearances as the deity, all sounds as deity mantras, and all thoughts as being of the enlightened deity's mind. So, when you view, and meditate, and concentrate, and have that kind of mindfulness, or awareness in your day-to-day life, that is the way one can carry through the practice. When somebody is yelling at you, you just think, “This is a deity. Maybe this deity is a little bit wrathful, manifesting something wrathful. Still, it is just a display.” Don't think, “Oh, how can I perceive this guy who is so mean, so bad and so cunning as a deity?” That is afflicted mind. That is how we conceptualize things according to our own thoughts. Then, if we meet with something enlightened, we make it ordinary. Then, if it is ordinary it has ordinary qualities and ordinary characteristics, and it is not of much value. That is how to practice according to Vajrayana, with that view. There is not much taught about needing to stay away from something. The view is to maintain the present moment. It is how, in every present moment, you can view, how you can concentrate, and how you can have that kind of awareness. Every present moment, whatever things happen, still you have to insist to yourself that you believe in that way. Still you need more courage to follow in that way. You have to pursue your path in that way. As you carry through the practice with diligence 27


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and continuity, and practice more seriously, then after some time you have the realization that things are pure in their nature. Once you have that realization, you will never project anything ordinary like ordinary sentient beings. You will project all beings as enlightened. At that time, you not only have pure perception, but also you have realized pure perception. You really experience it. You have that kind of real practice. That is why you will never see any negative thing or any negative action. Even if, on another level of mind, ordinary beings exist and are trying to harm you, there is literally no way they could really harm you because you are enlightened. Just as, when Shakyamuni Buddha was in his meditation of loving kindness, all the maras tried to attack him, but nothing happened. There are many stories like that. Whatever they may throw, whatever kind of weapons, they cannot physically affect you. Verbally, whatever they say, there is nothing. All the insults someone may throw at you are like an echo, like an illusion. Nothing really makes you feel bad, because you do not have that conceptual thought to see that this is negative and this is good. Your conceptual thoughts, those kind of negative discriminating thoughts, are purified, abandoned. In reality, no being can harm you. In that way, one can maintain Vajrayana practices. The complete cycle of Buddhist teachings is condensed into your view and behavior. The view is how, at best, you can perceive others as deities. If one cannot understand in that way, at least understand that their nature is that of emptiness. At the same time, they are appearing because of interdependent origination. That way one can understand. One needs practice to actualize that view. One needs at least some time in one's day-today life doing practice to develop oneself to experience that view. And then there is your behavior, or discipline, based on your body, speech and mind. Even if you cannot help beings, at least do not harm them. If you are more capable, then do not harm them consciously at all. Above that, how much can you benefit all beings? But, even if you cannot benefit or be a help to others, at least do not consciously harm them. We can make a commitment to ourselves to follow these practices in our day-to-day lives: “Okay, whatever may happen, I don't want to harm any sentient being, even if I can't benefit or help.” Then, as one becomes more capable, then one may say, “Besides that, I will try in whatever way I can to help or benefit whenever there is any opportunity. I am going to do that.” That way, one can live one's daily life with that commit28

ment. Based on that, one generates compassion and loving kindness and bodhicitta, training in that way. To really actualize all the perfections, though, one must attain enlightenment. When one attains enlightenment, then one can manifest in many different ways to benefit sentient beings. One knows each and every sentient being, their wishes, their needs, their capabilities and faculties and levels of mind. According to that, one can appear to benefit all sentient beings. So that is the practice. The whole message is how to train ourselves to generate compassion and loving kindness in our day-to-day lives. Besides that, take whatever possibility for practice of the six perfections or the deity practices, like Avalokitesvara practice, the compassionate deity practice. Even if you cannot do a specific practice with generation stage and completion stage, still, accumulate the mantras in your daily life. At any moment, any time, just accumulate mantras, any mantra, Tara, or Guru Padmasambhava, Vajrasattwa, Amitaba, Shakyamuni Buddha. There are so many Buddhas and deities. If one can chant many different mantras, that is good. But if one cannot chant many mantras, just concentrate on one mantra, like OM MANI PEDME HUNG. Every now and then, say, “OM MANI PEDME HUNG.” If you accumulate millions of them, you will definitely see some changes within yourself, which will help purify your obscurations, and that develops your qualities like wisdom, and also stabilizes your compassion and loving kindness. You can really experience it. If you do a few million of this one mantra, then, even if death happens, you will have no fear. “Oh, I have this deity who will help me because I have been doing all this practice.” And because of that accumulation of mantra, there is some kind of blessing that dissolves into one's mind stream. Certain sorts of negativities get purified. That is why there is more enlightening, more of a sense of peace and happiness. At the same time, one will never feel guilty. So, with one's body, speech, and mind, with that intention, with that mindfulness, and with that awareness, that is how we understand these teachings and carry them into our day-to-day lives as part of that practice.8


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“O h, my child, we are not bound by the appearances of samsaric phenomena, but by the grasping. Abandon the attachment.� - Tilopa to Naropa


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LEARNING TIBETAN: KA

TA

KHA

THA

GA

DA

NGA

NA

CA

CHA

JA

NYA

30

PA

PHA

BA

MA


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How to Write Tibetan Consonants TSA

RA

TSHA

LA

DZA

SHA

WA

SA

SHA

ZA

HA

A

窶連

YA

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Dharma Numeration: Twos T h e r e a r e m a n y enumerated lists of concepts, actions, things, etc. in Buddhism. In this issue we will focus on items that come in groups of two. TWO LOGICS: Direct Perception Logic and Inferential Logic 1. Direct perception logic is related to having direct perception of sense objects; for example, seeing a flower, hearing music, or having direct perception of absolute nature. 2. Inferential logic is related to an ability to derive or logically understand something based on a sign or an indication. For instance, if you see smoke, you can infer that there is a fire burning somewhere. TWO TRUTHS: Relative Truth and Absolute Truth 1. Relative truth is our perception of phenomena that appear and function as real in the relative sense, for example, a car, a pizza, a fire, anger, and so forth. 2. Absolute truth is our perception of phenomena, which do not have inherent existence or true nature, phenomena whose nature dissolves into emptiness when it is investigated via proper logical reasoning. TWO ACCUMULATIONS: Conceptual Accumulation of Merit and Non-Conceptual Accumulation of Wisdom 1. Conceptual accumulation of merit is a notion that when any virtuous action (such as generosity and so forth) is performed with a very positive pure intention to benefit others, it will accumulate merit. 2. Non-conceptual accumulation of wisdom comprises actions such as listening to dharma teachings, contemplating the meaning of these teachings, and concentrating on the unelaborated emptiness of nature in meditation equipoise without conceptual thoughts. TWO BODHICHITTAS: Relative Bodhichitta and Absolute Bodhichitta 1. Relative bodhichitta is a pure intention to attain enlightenment in order to benefit all sentient beings and liberate them from the suffering of samsara. 2. Absolute bodhichitta is the actual realization of emptiness when you have a direct perception of absolute truth. TWO RELATIVE BODHICHITTAS: Aspiration Bodhichitta and Application Bodhichitta 1. Aspiration bodhichitta is an intention of aspiring to attain 32

enlightenment in order to benefit all sentient beings. 2. Application bodhichitta is engaging in the actual practice of the six perfections, such as generosity and so forth. TWO YANAS: Hinayana (the Lesser Vehicle) and Mahayana (the Greater Vehicle) 1. Hinayana is mainly centered around the pratimoksha vow, a focus on individual liberation guided by renunciation of the world, achieved by realizing the sixteen aspects of the Four Noble Truths (such as impermanence and so forth). Hinayana practitioners attain the Arhat stage. 2. Mahayana is centered around the bodhisattva vow, a vow to benefit and liberate all parently sentient beings from the suffering of samsara and lead them to complete enlightenment, achieved by practicing the six perfections with meditation on the emptiness of all phenomena. TWO OBSCURATIONS: Obscuration of Afflictive Emotion and Obscuration of the Knowable 1. An afflictive emotion is that which obscures one from achieving nirvana (or liberation from samsara). Afflictive emotions are ignorance, desire, hatred, jealousy and pride. They are the cause of the suffering of samsara. 2. The obscuration of the knowable is that which obscures one from attaining complete enlightenment due to the presence of three spheres of conceptual thought: subject, object and action. TWO STAGES: Generation Stage and Completion Stage 1. The generation stage is the creation of the deity, its appearance, color, and specific hand emblems, through visualization. 2. The completion stage is the dissolution of the deity into emptiness as the true nature of the deity. TWO WISDOMS: The Enlightened Mind that Knows Suchness and The Enlightened Mind that Knows All Existing Phenomena. TWO KAYAS: Dharmakaya (Absolute Perfect Form) and Rupakaya (Pure Form of Appearance) 1. Dharmakaya is the ultimate state of the enlightened form. It is the source of all kayas and the base of all undefiled qualities. 2. Rupakaya is the ultimate pure form of appearance. It consists of sambhogakaya and nirmanakaya.8


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“discipline is like a safety belt.

A little bit of uneasiness can save your life from the three lower realms.

�

- Khenpo tenzin Norgey Rinpoche


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N AMDROLING MONASTER Y in India

D u r i n g t h e s e d a y s of the spreading of the five degenerations, His Holiness Penor Rinpoche probably would have preferred to do solitary meditation in retreat for the rest of his life. Yet he could not bear to see the situation of the Buddha's teachings in general and the Nyingma teachings in particular greatly degenerating and precariously remaining like an ephemeral rainbow in the sky. Moreover there was nobody from whom he could seek advice to prevent the grim situation from getting worse, as most of the noble scholars and masters of Tibet were unable to move to India. Eventually, as he felt that the responsibility to preserve the teachings fell on his shoulders, he adorned himself with the armor of unflinching determination and resolved to uphold the teachings through the three means of study, practice, and activity. As a result of his willpower and courage, having only 300 rupees and a handful of monks, on the auspicious tenth day of the sixth month of the Tibetan calendar, amidst the sandal grove of the Mysore region, he laid the 34

foundation stone of the three-storied main temple that covers an area of 80 feet square. His Holiness the Dalai Lama consecrated the spot and bequeathed the name “Namdroling Monastery.� Due to lack of funds, H.H. Penor Rinpoche faced many tremendous hardships, yet, for the sake of upholding the teachings and to benefit sentient beings, he set all hardships aside, and by relying on the meager offerings of his faithful devotees, construction of the monastery was begun. People around him did not have the vision that he had and therefore insisted that Rinpoche reduce the size of the planned monastery. At that time, there were only a handful of monks. When today's monks cram into the monastery by the hundreds and find no place to sit, one can only wonder at the foresight that Penor Rinpoche had over three decades ago. Few masters of Penor Rinpoche's status would have undergone the hardships that he went through. During the construction, Penor Rinpoche personally participated in the manual labour and suffered multiple blisters and wounds on his hands


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which would be perhaps unbearable to many. He tolerated these adversities bravely without the slightest sign of despair, which demonstrates the ongoing manifestation of the Primordial Protector Samantabhadra in human form. Through his impeccable aspiration and unwavering resolution, the new temple was completed and fully furnished with many images of Buddhas and Bodhisattavas. Four smaller temples were also built for the deities of Vajrakilaya (Phurba), Tara (Drolma), and deities from the Eight Pronouncements of Guru Rinpoche (Ka Gyed), and The Sutra Integrating Essential Thoughts (Gongdu). In addition, three temples of Dharma Protectors, one library, nine prayer wheels of varying sizes, a stupa that holds the relics of Terton Migyur Dorje, eight stupas of the Tathagata, five hundred rooms for monks, a meeting hall for the primary school, three hundred rooms for the primary students, an office, a modern fully furnished kitchen for the monks, residence for attendants, a guest house, two hospitals, and a home for aged people were also constructed. He also commissioned the construction of two bridges and paved roads to allow for motor transportation. At Namdroling Monastery food, clothes and education are provided free of charge to one thousand five hundred monks in the lower and primary schools alone. The youngsters are taught to read and write Tibetan and are taught fundamental texts of philosophy such as Shantideva's Bodhisattava's Way of Life, A Letter to a Friend by Nagarjuna, and Ngulchu Thogmed Sangpo's Thirtyseven Practices of Bodhisattava. Tantric rites and rituals and the arts of making sand mandalas, ritual cakes, and butter sculptures are also taught extensively. A modern education is provided up to eighth standard by the senior students of Nyingma Institute and examinations are conducted annually. Health education is also taught and strongly encouraged for personal hygiene and community health. Establishing Namdroling Monastery is the first great achievement of His Holiness Penor Rinpoche. Homage Glorious Guru Padma Norbu! From the ocean of your teaching, meditation, and 000enlightened activity, You send forth the rivers of sutra and tantra teachings 000in the ten directions, Quenching the thirst of countless beings of these 000degenerate times. O! Glorious Guru Pema Norbu, may you live long for 0000tthe sake of all.

NGAGYUR NYINGMA INSTITUTE According to Vasubandhu's Abhidharmakosha, the teachings of Buddha consist of two kinds: The scriptural and realization teachings. The only methods to uphold the doctrine Are to proclaim these teachings and engage in 000the practice. Thus Vasubandhu confirms that the only way to uphold and spread the Buddhadharma is through teaching and practicing. Keeping that in mind, H.H. Penor Rinpoche established the Ngagyur Nyingma Institute for Higher Buddhist studies. Class rooms, living quarters for the students, a library, an office, a kitchen, and a dining hall were constructed, and on the auspicious day of February 17, 1978, Ngagyur Nyingma Institute (NNI) was inaugurated. Later a three-storied temple, fully furnished with Dharma statues and images, was built adjoining the Institute to serve as a place of prayer and study. Since its establishment as a small center of learning, NNI has developed quickly, making swift progress both in academic and administrative aspects. Through the indomitable will and unwavering selfless effort of H.H. Penor Rinpoche and the service rendered by its industrious staff members, NNI ranks among the premier Buddhist centers of learning in the world. It is currently the largest Tibetan monastic center of Buddhist education administered as a regular college. Due to its growing reputation as an up-to-date and lively school of advanced Buddhist studies and Tibetan literature, the Institute is attracting hundreds of scholars from many Buddhist countries every year. H.H. the Dalai Lama also blesses NNI with occasional visits when he comes to Bylakuppe. During past visits he graciously consented to witness the display of Dharma discourses, debates, and compositions written by the students. H.H. the Dalai Lama highly appreciated the performance of NNI and thanked H.H. Penor Rinpoche for his unflinching enterprise and dedication to bring the Institute up to its present form. His compliments here and elsewhere have helped the Institute earn much popularity among the Tibetan community. All the students receive a complete set of monk's robes once a year and food is provided free of charge. To help offset the student's various personal expenses, a small allowance is given monthly to each NNI student. In 35


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order to maintain the high quality of education, students must adhere to easy-to-follow rules which avoid the extremes of strictness and laxity. The nine-year course of study includes the root texts and commentaries of Vinaya, Abhidharma, Madhyamika, Pramana, three vows of Pratimoksha, Bodhisattava, and Vajrayana, five treatises of Maitreya, and the inner tantras of Mahayoga, Anuyoga, and Atiyoga. In short, all subjects ranging from basic sutra teachings to the highest secret mantra teachings of Dzogchen are extensively studied, researched, and debated under the supreme tutelage of Khenpo Pema Sherab, Khenpo Namdrol, and Khenpo Tsewang Gyatso. In addition, common fields of study including Tibetan grammar, poetry, and political and religious history are also studied. After the completion of the fourth year, successful students are conferred the title of Thadrel Mawai Wangchug, “Master of Madhyamika Philosophy.” The students who finish the sixth year are awarded with the title of Pharchin Rabjampa, “Master of Paramitayana.” And upon completion of the ninth year, the title of Ngesang Legshed Dzod Chang, “Holder of the Secret Treasure and Ultimate Teachings of Mantrayana,” is conferred. Upon completing all nine years, interested students may do research for three years, and if they are successful, the title of Dogyud Ngedon Legshed Dzod Chang, “Illuminator of the Sutra and Tantra Treasury,” is awarded. After this conferral, if the candidate possesses outstanding personal qualities and teaching abilities, H.H. Penor Rinpoche will personally confer the highest degree

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of Khenpo, and bequeath the honorary hat of the pandita. In 1989, amidst a magnificent assembly of scholars from the four schools of Tibetan Buddhism and thousands of monks, the first convocation was held with great celebration in which the first batch of nine candidates was conferred with the Khenpo degree. In 1994 and 1999, the second and third batches of five and ten successful candidates were bestowed with Khenpo degrees. To date, out of total of 153 graduates from NNI, 24 have been bestowed with the title of Khenpo. Currently, the alumni of NNI are rendering religious service in Nyingma monasteries and Dharma centers throughout the world, bringing Dharma to Asian villages and foreign lands where previously there were no qualified teachers. Their tireless efforts benefit innumerable sentient beings and, by keeping the teachings vibrant and active, the tradition is kept alive to serve long into the future. The establishment of NNI is the third great achievement of H.H. Penor Rinpoche. Situated in the southern region of India, The Nyingma Institute is like a fertile field for monks to 000cultivate their minds in the five major fields of study. Through its outstanding activities of teaching, debating, 000and composing, NNI has become a beautiful garden for the world. By the graduates spreading the teachings in the ten 000directions, All sentient beings reap the bountiful harvest.


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S A M T E N O S E L I N G R E T R E AT C E N T E R The mother Palyul monastery in Tibet produced countless renowned scholars and adepts in both sutra and tantra as well as in the common fields of study, such as poetry, Tibetan grammar, medicine, astrology, etc. Keeping the preciousness and uniqueness of Dzogchen in mind, great emphasis was put on safeguarding and disseminating the Dzogchen teachings. In order to swiftly attain the common and supreme siddhis (accomplishment), strict observance of the three vows of Pratimoksha (self liberation), Bodhisattva vows (the noble beings), and Vajrayana (the tantric) was considered vital. An individual possessing the three vows was qualified to enroll in the retreat center where three years and three months' time was provided to accomplish the meditational training and recitations of the three roots of lama, yidam, and dakini. One must first understand the transmitted meditation instructions and thereafter practice was stressed. To accomplish the highest completionstage yoga with and without signs—the union of Mahamudra and Dzogchen—the practices ranging from the preliminary practices of Ngondro to the completion stage practices of Tregchöd and Thödgyal were undertaken. Thereafter, examinations of realizations and spiritual experiences were conducted from which the outstanding practitioners were awarded the title of Vajra Acharya and the special Hat of the Vajra Lopon was bestowed. To preserve and propagate the unbroken lineage of Dzogchen practice in modern times, H.H. Penor

Rinpoche established the retreat center Samten Oseling, which was inaugurated on the auspicious full moon day of the fourth Tibetan month in 1985. The practices undertaken in the retreat center are from the former Drubwang Rinpoche's practices based on the texts Nyingthig Tsasum (the three roots), Railing Tsedrup (the longevity practice), Vajrakilaya, Shitro (hundred deities), and others. Since the retreat center's inception, sixty practitioners have successfully completed the three year, three month retreat and have been honored with the Vajra Acharya title and presented with the Hat of the Vajra Lopon. They are currently working as abbots and teachers in various Dharma centers throughout the world. In 1997 the retreat center was moved to a newly constructed, larger facility with accommodation for thirty practitioners, a prayer hall, kitchen, and storeroom. The current group of retreatants is rigorously training day and night without distraction. The establishment of Samten Oseling Retreat Center is the fourth great achievement of H.H. Penor Rinpoche. By viewing all phenomena as primordially pure, And meditating on the inherent pristine clear light of 0000one's mind, And by beseeching the lama, yidam and dakini through 0000vajra songs, One creates the base for attaining the auspicious 0000Rainbow Body in this very lifetime.

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T S O G YA L S H E D R U B L I N G N U N N E R Y Through the inception of Namdroling monastery, monks were given the precious opportunity to receive the supreme nectar of Dharma. But it was deeply felt that their female counterparts were deprived of this golden possibility. In modem times there have been an increasing number of women interested in deeply studying and practicing the Dharma. In addition, Nyingma nuns who escaped Tibet were usually left in dire straits without any suitable place to study and practice religion. In an effort to help these women, overcoming many hardships and obstacles, H.H. Penor Rinpoche established a nunnery, which was inaugurated on November 27, 1993. H.H. the Dalai Lama was invited to consecrate the nunnery and he bestowed the name, “Tsogyal Shedrub Ling,” commemorating the great saint, Yeshe Tsogyal. Within a short time, a three-storied temple furnished with Dharma statues and images, a kitchen, store-room, classrooms, and accommodations for 250 nuns was constructed. Each of the nuns is provided free of charge with food, a full set of nun's robes each year, and a small allowance each month to help offset personal expenses. Just as the monks have NNI, the nuns also have a corresponding college in which over one hundred nuns

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are currently enrolled. Similar to NNI, the nuns' college awards degrees and conducts annual examinations after which the three highest-scoring students from each grade level are awarded certificates of appreciation. The nunnery also provides basic education in the primary school up to eighth standard. The nuns study reading and writing of Tibetan language, Buddhist logic, tantric rituals and basic Buddhist philosophy relying on texts such as Nagarjuna's A Letter to a Friend, as well making ritual cakes and butter sculpture. The elder nuns enroll in the college or do meditation practices, which include the preliminary practices of Ngondro, practices of the three roots, meditations of the psychic winds and channels, Tregchöd, and Thödgyal. The establishment of Tsogyal Shedrub Ling Nunnery is the fifth great achievement of H.H. Penor Rinpoche. In the pure lotus-like hearts of the nuns, Resides the quintessential nectar of the teachings. By radiating the virtuous essence of their study 0000and practice, Beings are relieved from their misery. Fulfilling the wishes of Khandro Yeshe Tsogyal, The nunnery is undoubtedly an island 0000of liberation.8


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“ A n obstacle

is like a wall i n f ro n t o f y o u . Don't just stay behind it. Tr y t o f i n d a n o t h e r way to pass t h ro u g h . �

- Khen Rinpoche Tsewang Gyatso


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The Wealth of Wisdom a story

T h e r e was

o n c e a g r e a t p o e t who lived in a very old village in Varanasi. He was poor, but wise and very honest. All he did was write poems, which he shared with the village people. The poems really entertained the residents of the village and they all enjoyed the poet very much. They would come with their lunches to hear the poet, and each time they came they would share their food with him. Their life was hard but they lived happily together. One day, the king of Varanasi heard about the poet. The king asked his ministers to bring the poet to his chamber. The ministers had a meeting to decide who should go to the village to bring the poet back, because it was a long trip by horse on very bad roads through thick forest. Since the village was very poor and the ministers would have to stay in the village overnight, none of them wanted to go. Finally a very loyal and intelligent minister volunteered to go with four of his friends. The next day the minister left with his friends. They carried the king's written orders. They traveled all day and through the night, and before dawn they arrived the edge of the village. The villagers had heard that the king had sent a minister to take the poor poet, but they did not know why. When the minister and his friends got there, they saw a sad-looking man sitting alone under a tree. The minister ordered the man to bring his group some water and food. The villager said, “Sir, I don't have food for myself. But I have food for everybody.” One of the minister's friends said, “You stupid person, when you don't have food for yourself, then how

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you can have it for everybody else?” “Yes, sir,” the man said. “I have food for the rich people, but I don't have that food to eat myself, because I am poor.” The travelers were completely confused. But the minister felt that what the man said was either totally silly or very interesting. As they talked, more and more people from the village joined them. The minister got down from his horse and gave the horse to the man. Then the minister said, “Now you have a horse but you don't have a horse for yourself. Is that what you are saying?” “No, sir, I don't have the horse for myself because I don't have a horse. But sir, I have wealth to share with the wealthy people, but not for the poor people.” Then the minister looked around and said, “Who is the poet in your village? Call him here now.” The man and the rest of villagers all became quiet for a minute. Finally a small boy said, “Sir, he is here, right in front of you.” Then the man himself said, “The poet is here to greet you. But I am not sure that I am the one you are looking for.” Then the minister declared the king's orders and said, “I must now take your poet to the king. But I promise you that no harm will be done to him or to the village.” The next day, many villagers came to see the poet leave. Madhu Lila, who the poet loved, also came. She said, “I hope you will come back soon.” He said, “There is no hurry. The time will come for us to see each other again.” Then she asked him for his last poem, and the whole village joined in her request.


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The minister and his friends watched and said nothing. The poet asked for permission to recite one last poem. The minister said, “Share the food that you have and let the villagers enjoy your wealth. You will become rich and will never die of hunger.” The poet bowed down with his hands folded and said, “Please enjoy it, sir.” The sun rises with its beautiful light, The world wakes up and begins the day, The lotus blossoms and opens the heart, With great joy and pleasant thoughts. As birds sing and butterflies play, The days pass by and the time will come to see 0000you again. The dawn of the poet shines with the light of wisdom, It brings the warmth of happiness and the joy of a 0000pleasant day, The darkness of poverty and suffering is vanquished, And prosperity and the enjoyment of life remain. With the pervasive light of love and care, The time will come to see you in the happiness 0000of gathering. When the beautiful light of dusk glows, And the reality of the appearance of daylight dissolves, The illusory manifestations of the dream begin. Were the leaves of the trees to fall and flowers 0000fade away, And the child to grow and youth to fade into age, Still the time would come to see you again, When you are there for me, when I return. Now I will leave for the cause of happiness,

To please the great ruler and his ministers, To share the wealth of wisdom with the rich, And to share happiness and prosperity with you. There will come a time to see you again, As the result of my pure and true love for you. Everyone enjoyed the poem, but everybody was silent with sadness. The silence broke when the minister said, “Let us begin. It will be a long day traveling back through the forest.” The king happily welcomed the poet as a great scholar and the poet bowed down with respect. And the poet said, “Mighty ruler of the universe, you are the light for the people.” The king enjoyed the poet and his beautiful poems every day and learned a great deal of wisdom from them. The king even applied this wisdom to his administration. True prosperity and happiness were brought to the kingdom. The king sent a lot of food and wealth to the village as a reward for letting the poet come. The poet himself was showered with immense wealth and the king even gave him the whole city. And this wealth was enjoyed by the village as well. But it was a long time before the poet came back to the village. When he finally arrived, he found that Madhu Lila had already married. But the poet and Madhu Lila were still in love, a love that continued into their next lives. Later Shakyamuni Buddha said, “In many previous lives you see how karma gets connected in this way. The king was my father and the minister and his friends were my five disciples. The poet was me and Madhu Lila my wife, and the boy was our son.”8 41


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The Wise Sage’s Payment a story

T h e r e w a s o n c e a k i n g who wanted the best education for his son. After a long search, a sage was found who had a reputation for being a fine teacher. The king went to the sage and demanded that he accept the prince as his student, and treat him as a prince ought to be treated. The sage rebuked the king for his rude and arrogant way of approaching him and told him that the prince would be treated just like every other student in the school. The king was very angry with the sage, but he decided that he would punish him at a later time. The king left the prince with the sage at the school in the forest and returned to his palace. The prince was a model student and very obedient to his master. He remained with the sage until he was 16 years old. He received all the training the sage had to offer and was the best of students. When he was leaving school, the prince begged the sage to tell him what payment he should offer in return for the many years of loving teaching and guidance he had received. The prince was so insistent that the sage finally told him that he would certainly accept some payment, but he said, “I will ask you when right time comes.” Once the prince returned to the palace the king was very happy, but the king had not forgiven the sage nor had he forgotten the sage's rebuke. So the king immediately sent his soldiers to burn down the school. Some weeks later, the prince was going to get married. The prince wanted to invite his master to the 42

marriage ceremony and to receive his blessings. When the prince went back to the school to invite the sage, he was shocked to find the school reduced to a heap of ashes. “Who has done this?” asked the prince. “I will not rest until I have the head of the person who made you suffer!” The sage smiled at the student and said, “I am not at all angry with him. Instead I feel more sorry for him because he does not know what karma he has created. I have pity for him. But do you remember that you promised me a fee for teaching you? Well, now I am going to ask for that fee.” The story teller ended the story there and asked, “Do you know what the sage asked for? There were two questions asked by the sage, which have completely opposite meanings. But the prince had a 'Yes' answer for both questions.” Can you guess the two questions to which the prince answered yes? Also, can you guess what the sage actually asked as his fee out of those questions?* This is a story from one of Buddha's many previous lives. The sage was Buddha himself and the king was his father, and the young prince was Rahula, the son of prince Siddhartha. This story also explains how karma gets connected in both directions.8 *Please log on to our website for answers to the above questions: www.palyulclearlight.org


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October Butler

palyul clearlight magazine


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News From the Centers I n t h i s s e c t i o n we bring you news and activities from the Palyul Centers. We encourage all centers to share their stories and their activities with our readers. Palyul Changchub Dargyeling Ohio Richfield, Ohio Palyul Changchub Dargyeling Ohio, established in the spring of 2000, obtained a new temple in Richfield, Ohio in April, 2005. A full scale renovation of the temple is currently underway and when finished the temple will accommodate 85 people complete with a monastic residence. His Holiness Penor Rinpoche visited to consecrate the new temple in August of 2005. During His Holiness' visit, he also conferred the Rigdzin Dupa and Yumka empowerments, and gave Refuge and Bodhisattva Vows. In late August, Palyul Ohio was honored to host Khen Rinpoche Pema Sherab, who gave teachings on tonglen, bodhicitta, and the generation and completion stages of Vajrayana Buddhism. Khenpo Tenzin Norgey Rinpoche translated for this event. Lama Souchuk spent two weeks in residence in September, leading daily morning and Ngondro practices at the temple. In November, Tulku Orgyen Phontsok gave teachings on Tara and Medicine Buddha and led a Rigdzin Dupa tsog. During a 12-day winter program in January, 2006, Khen Rinpoche Tsewang Gyatso gave teachings on the Great Perfection Ngondro, conferred the Dzambala and Vajrakilaya Empowerments, and the Dzogchen Prayer to Kuntuzangpo. Khen Rinpoche will return to Ohio from May 15th through the 21st, 2006. Nyingma Palyul Dharma Center New York, New York On February 23, 2005, the 15th day of the first month of the Tibetan calendar, the Nyingma Palyul Dharma Center in New York City opened its doors to students of His Holiness Penor Rinpoche and to all others who want to come. This small space on the third floor of 121 Bowery

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has finally given the New York City sangha a place to call their own. In April, during Khen Rinpoche Tsewang Gyatso’s teaching schedule in New York City, Khen Rinpoche appeared at the Center to give a public talk and to bless and inaugurate the new Center. On April 9, the 15th day of the fourth month of the Tibetan calendar, Saka Dauk Duchen, Khenpo Tenzin Norgey Rinpoche consecrated three large statues—those of Shakyamuni Buddha, Guru Rinpoche and Green Tara— sent from Nepal. The Center was further blessed to receive His Eminence Gyang Khang Rinpoche in December, who gave the Tseringma empowerment. Khen Rinpoche Tsewang Gyatso visited again in January, giving the empowerment of the Eight Manifestations of Guru Rinpoche and teachings on the seven chapters of Padmasambhava. Regular practice is held under the leadership of our resident Lama, Lama Wangchuk. In addition, the Center's resident instructor, Khenpo Tenzin Norgey Rinpoche, provides a regular schedule of teachings, pujas on auspicious days, as well as classes in the Tibetan language. Longchenpa Institute Stafford, Virginia Longchenpa Institute will be hosting a 10-day Guhyagarbha Tantra Retreat from April 14th through the 23rd, 2006, under the guidance of Khen Rinpoche Tsewang Gyatso at the Palyul Retreat Center in upstate New York. The Guhyagarbha Tantra, which translates as the Secret Essence of Magical Net, is one of the main inner tantric texts according to the Nyingma School. It is also known as the Vajrasattva Magical Net. Please note that this is an advanced teaching and is by invitation only. Attendees must have attended one of the previous Guhyagarbha Tantra retreats. Participants must expect to attend the full ten days. The retreat will be held at Palyul Ling Retreat Center, 359 German Hollow Road, McDonough, NY 13801.


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Palyul Changchub Dargyeling Dallas Richardson, Texas Palyul Changchub Dargyeling Dallas has regularly hosted Khen Rinpoche Tsewang Gyatso. Khen Rinpoche visited in February and June of 2004 to offer a program entitled “Entry to Integrated Buddhist Thought and Practice,” offering instructions on the Ngondro foundation practices. In March of 2005, Khen Rinpoche offered an introduction to the Bardo, as well as the empowerments of Vajrasattva and Shitro and 100 Deities. During his October visit, Khen Rinpoche offered a program on Dzogchen Meditation Practice entitled “Escaping the Matrix.” The program included empowerments of Avalokitesvara and White Tara. In his most recent visit, in January of 2006, Khen Rinpoche gave a program on “The Great Perfection Teachings: Buddha in the Palm of the Hand.” This program included teachings on the Four Thoughts That Turn the Mind to Dharma, the causes and effects of karma, taking refuge in the Dharma, and the Vajrasattva purification practice. Khen Rinpoche also gave the empowerments of the Eight Manifestations of Guru Rinpoche and Black Dzambhala. Khenpo Tenzin Norgey Rinpoche has also become a frequent visitor to the Center. Khenpo Norgey offered teachings on the nine yanas in December of 2004. In June of 2005, Khenpo gave a program on developing Bodhichitta, including teachings on the meditation stages in Bodhicaryavatara, and on the Vajrasattva, Mandala and Twenty-one Tara practices. In his most recent visit, Khenpo Norgey gave teachings on the Four Noble Truths of Buddhism.

TEACHING SCHEDULES

His Holiness Penor Rinpoche July 10 - August 10 Annual Summer Retreat Palyul Ling Retreat Center, McDonough, NY August 18 & 19 Nyunge Empowerment Chuang Yen Monastery, Carmel, NY Please visit www.BAUS.org for program confirmation and updates.

Khen Rinpoche Tsewang Gyatso April 6 - April 12 Palyul Changchub Dargyeling San Francisco Bay Area CA April 13 - April 23 Guhyagarbha Tantra Retreat Palyul Retreat Center, NY April 28 - April 30 Palyul Changchub Dargyeling, New York City May 2 - May 7 Gulf Breeze Dharma Center, Pensacola, FL May 8 - May 14 Palyul Changchub Dargyeling, Dallas TX May 15 - May 22 Palyul Changchub Dargyeling, Cleveland OH May 23 - May 28 Namdroling, Bozeman MN May 29 - June 4 Palyul Changchub Dargyeling San Francisco Bay Area CA July 9 - August 10 Palyul Retreat Center, NY

Khenpo Tenzin Norgey Rinpoche The Four Nails May 13, May 20 Nyingma Palyul Dharma Center, NYC Tibetan Language Class Every Other Wednesday, 7 PM Nyingma Palyul Dharma Center, NYC Memorial Weekend Retreat May 26-May 29 (provisional dates) Palyul Ling Retreat Center, McDonough, NY All events are subjects to change. For most recent update, please visit www.palyul.org.8 45


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PALYUL CENTERS AROUND THE WORLD

UNITED STATES The Palyul Retreat Center 359 German Hollow Road McDonough, NY 13801 T 607.656.4645 F 607.656.5360 Nyingma Palyul Dharma Center 121 Bowery Street, 3rd Floor New York, NY 10013 T 212.219.9832 Palyul Changchub Dargyeling P. O. Box 1514 Mill Valley, CA 94941 T 415.388.4923 Palyl Changchub Dargyeling 8291 Presson Place Los Angeles, CA 9069 T 213.654.8662 F 213.654.0196 Palyul Changchub Choling 18400 River Road Poolesville, MD 20837 T 301.428.8116 F 301.428.8245 Palyul Changchub Dargyeling, Ohio P. O. Box 154 Chagrin Falls, OH 44022 T 330.659.9037 F 440.247.9438 Longchenpa Institute P. O. Box 1234 Stafford, VA 22555 T 540-752-4553 F 540-752-4553 Namdroling Montana P.O. Box 8 Bozeman, MT 59771 T 406.587.2907

Palyul Changchub Choling 913 Gulf Breeze Parkway Suite 25 Gulf Breeze, FL 32561 CANADA Palyul Namdroling Foundation Chamundi House R.R.#2, Mountain, Ontario Canada K0E 1S0 T 613.774.1010 F 613.774.0862 The Palyul Foundatioin of Canada R.R.3, Box 68 Madoc, Ontario Canada K0K 2K0 T 613.967.7432 Orgyan Osal Chodzong Monastery & Retreat Center 1755 Lingham Lake Road Madoc, Ontario Canada K0K 2K0 T 613.967.7432 Palyul Changchub Dargyeling 2100 Bloor Street, Suite 6266 Toronto, Ontario Canada M6S 5A5 T 416.604.0409 HONG KONG Palyul Changchub Dargyeling Flat 3, 3rd Floor Kui Fung Mansion 18 Austin Avenue TST, Kowloon Hong Kong T 852.27210115 F 852.27242152

PHILLIPINES Philippine Palyul Changchub Dargyeling Dharma Center, Inc. #73 Biak-Na-Bato Street Cor. Don Manuel Street Sto. Domingo Quezon City, Phillipines T 632.712.1022 F 632.731.8746 SINGAPORE Palyul Nyingma Buddhist Association 17H Lorong 15 Geylang Singapore 388608 T 65.67429261 F 65.67429904 GREECE Palyul Dharma Center Stathis Likopoulis 15 Irodotou Street Kolonaki 10674 Athens, Greece T 30.172.10168 TAIWAN TAIPEI CITY

Palyul Buddhist Association Hsien Tien, Taipei 3F, #135, Mingchuang Rd. Hsintien 231, Taipei, Taiwan, R.O.C. T 886.2.22182486-7 F 886.2.22183780 KAOHSUING

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Macau Palyul Buddhist Dharma Chakra Centre Avenue de Horta E. Costa 3D Hou Si Tak Garden 2H Macau SAR T 853.523684

Nyingmapa Wosel Choetso No.130, 4 Rd., Juwei Chia-Yi-City Taiwan, R.O.C. T 05.2323380 F 05.2323373 Kunsang Thagshok Dorje 260 No.27-1, LN 100 Tayshan Road I-Lane, Taiwan, R.O.C. T 03.9332083 F 03.9315872 TAINAN Nyingmapa Palyul Jangchub Dargyeling Buddhist Center 6F, #551, Jainping 8th St. Anping Chiu Tainan 708 Taiwan, R.O.C. T 06.295.7882/7883 F 06.295.7894

Tibetan Traditional Palyul Tashicholing Buddhist Center No.10, Lane 131, Sec.3 Sanmin Road Taichung City Taiwan, R.O.C. T 04.22299301 F 04.23150910 NEPAL Palyul Thegchog Wodsel Choling P.O. Box 3630 Kathmandu, Nepal T 977.01.470326 Nyingma Palyul Retreat Center Ganesh Than Sheshnarayan 3 Pharping KTM Nepal T 977.01.710368 F 977.01.710369 Yanglayschod Palyul Retreat Center Talku VDC Ward No.5 KTM Nepal T 977.01.710051 F 977.01.410286 INDIA

Nyingma Palyul Dharma Center 3F, No.195, Section 2 Hwuan Ho South Road Taiepei City, Taiwan R.O.C. T 02.2336.9226

MACAU Palyul Changchub Dargyeling Dallas 320 Terrace Drive Richardson, TX 7508 T 469 438 8207

Nyingmapa Palyul Boshi Dharma Center 8F, #410, Jongshan 2 Rd. Ling Yah District, Kaoshiung Taiwan, R.O.C. T 07.537.4134/4470 F 07.537.4447

Nyingmapa Palyul Buddhist Center 9F, #489 Jongshan 2 Rd. Ling Yah District, Kaoshiung Taiwan, R.O.C. T 886.7.5360488 F 886.7.3307375

SHENG KENG Nyingmapa Palyul Dharma Center 10, Lane 8, Tsui Gu St. Sheng Keng, Taipei county Taiwan, R.O.C. T 02.2662.4271 2664.9777 F 02.2664.2875 TAICHUNG Palyul Dharma Center 7F, #329, Wen Hsin Rd. Sec.4, Taichung 406 Taiwan, R.O.C. T 04.2.2452672 F 04.2.2454653 Palyul Dhama Center No.37, Lane 91, Sec.1 Shin Jen Road Ta-Li City, Taichung Taiwan, R.O.C. T 04.2278.6455

Namdroling Monastery Liaison Office SG-602, South Block Manipal Centre 47 Dickenson Road Bangalore560042, India T 91.80.5587434 Tsechu Association 16 M. C. Road Darjeeling, (WB) India T 91.0354.53077 Palyul Changchub Dargyeling P. O. Dirang West Kameng (AP) India PIN 790101 T 03.780.242162/242146 F 03.780.242162

PALYUL WEBSITE:

www.palyul.org


palyul clearlight magazine

5/2/06

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Liberation Annual Summer IsRetreat In The with Palm of His Holiness Your Hand Penor Rinpoche July 10 - August 10, 2006 Palyul Ling Retreat Center, McDonough, N.Y. www.palyul.org

Ngondro • Tsalung •Thödgyal • Tregchöd • Pith Instruction

Weekend Wangs: ZAMBO YANGTIK from The Nyingtihk Yabshi


Palyul Clear Light Premiere