Short Teachings & Sayings

by the 17. Gyalwang Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje

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Whether or not you go in a positive direction depends entirely on you. You have to be your own teacher and try to figure out what it takes to accomplish your goals. You have to be your own judge and try to get yourself to do the right thing and stop yourself from doing the wrong thing. Take responsibility for yourself. Only you know your own secrets; no one else can read your mind. If you want to make a change, don’t depend on the help of others without taking any initiative yourself.

A Brief Biography
The Karmapas "Karmapa" means "one who carries out the activity of the Buddhas." In the Tibetan tradition, a young child is identified as a reincarnation of the prior Karmapa. The child is then taken to his ancestral seat, and trained in Buddhist study, meditation and leadership activities. At a certain age, the child is expected to assume the mantle of a "Karmapa," and manifest in his example and activity the enlightened activities of a Buddha. Birth and Early Years of the 17th Karmapa In 1985 a male infant was born into a nomad family in the Lhatok region of Eastern Tibet. In the months prior to his birth, his mother had wonderful dreams during her pregnancy. On the day of his birth, a cuckoo landed on the tent in which he was born, and a mysterious conch-like sound was heard by many throughout the valley in which the family of the infant lived. In Tibet, such events are considered auspicious portents of the birth of an enlightened teacher. The young nomad was called Apo Gaga. While his early years seemed, to his family, full of blessing, Apo Gaga did not talk of any connection to the Karmapas. In 1992, he did ask his family to move the location of their nomadic home to another valley, and told them to expect a visit from traveling monks. Soon after setting up their home in the new location, followers of the Sixteenth Karmapa came to that valley pursuant to the secret instructions of the Sixteenth Karmapa, contained in his letter of prediction. Since these predictions were to be fulfilled in themselves without recognition by any other master, it is traditionally said that the Karmapa is "self-recognized." The birth and the other details of Apo Gaga's life matched the predictions of the letter. Apo Gaga was discovered to be the Seventeenth Karmapa, Ogyen Drodul Trinley Dorje.

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The Karmapa's Return To Tsurphu In Tibet, The Historic Seat Of The Karmapas The Seventeenth Karmapa arrived at Tolung Tsurphu Monastery in Central Tibet in 1992, where he was enthroned on September 27, 1992, with the permission of the Chinese government. At Tsurphu, over 20,000 supplicants assembled to witness the return of His Holiness Karmapa. The following morning, some 25,000 people filed before His Holiness to receive a personal blessing. The Karmapa studied and practiced the Buddhist sciences of mind, learned ritual and sacred arts, such as dance. Each day he received hundreds of visitors from throughout Tibet and around the world. He eventually began to offer empowerments and participated in various rituals at the monastery. At the age of about 10, His Holiness recognized the rebirth of reincarnate teachers, including such eminent teachers as Pawo Rinpoche, Jamgon Kongtrul Rinpoche and the Dabzang Rinpoche. While His Holiness was at Tsurphu, the monastery underwent extensive rebuilding to restore the temples, shrines, stupas, a shedra, and residences that had severely decayed and been neglected over the years, fulfilling one of the main duties of a Karmapa. As the years went by, however, His Holiness sought to receive the empowerments and transmissions of the lineage, but was unable to do so fully because many of the Kagyu lineage teachers remained in India. To fulfill his spiritual duty, he and a handful of attendants left Tibet for India. Karmapa's Journey to India After months of careful planning, on December 28, the fourteen-year-old Karmapa pretended to enter into a solitary retreat, instead donned civilian garb, and slipped out a window. Leaving Tsurphu Monastery with a handful of attendants, he began a daring journey by car, foot, horseback, helicopter, train and taxi, a heroic journey which was to become the stuff of headlines throughout the world. On January 5, 2000 he arrived, to the great surprise and overwhelming joy of the world, in Dharamsala, India, where he was met by His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama. He received refugee status from the government of India in 2001. Details of his remarkable journey from Tibet to India are here. From 2000 through the present, His Holiness continued to live near Dharamsala. He has been permitted by Indian governmental authorities to engage in tours to Buddhist sites in India, and annually traveled to Bodhgaya and Sarnath for important Kagyu ceremonies over which he presides. He has also travelled to Ladakh, Tibetan settlements in southern India, Calcutta and elsewhere in Himachal area. His Holiness still awaits permission from the Indian authorities to leave Dharamsala and return to Rumtek Monastery, the traditional seat of the Karmapas in India. In 2008, His Holiness made a historic visit to the United States to teach the dharma for his first time in the West.

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Four Line Aspiration Prayer
by His Holiness the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa

Unequaled son of Shuddhodhana, foremost among human beings, Guru Padmakara, a second Buddha, Düsum Kyenpa, founder of the teaching tradition of the Practice Lineage, I supplicate you: grant your blessings.1

1 Having reached the age of nine years, this was written during the festival of Saga Dawa of the Water-bird year of the 17th Rabjung (1993) at the Dharma Palace of Tsur Dowo Lung. By the one blessed by having received the name Buddha Karmapa, and called Pal Khyabdak Rangjung Ugyen Gyalwae Nyugu Trinley Dorje Tsal Choklé Nampar Gyalwae Dé. May this be virtuous. (Translated by The Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche and Martin Marvet).

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Like the light of the sun, moon, and stars, may love, compassion, and wisdom shine forth. May they strike every single living being and dispel the darkness of ignorance, attachment, and hatred that has lurked for ages in their being. When any living being meets with another, may it be like the reunion of a mother and child who have long been separated. In a harmonious world such as this, may I see everyone sleep peacefully to the music of non-violence. This is my dream.

I must be someone who considers the happiness and suffering of others, and thinks of the world.

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BIRTH AND DEATH

Nurtured by my mother’s love and warmth, I stepped anew into this human world . Its limitless and ever-changing marvels I pursued with a restless, grasping mind, tasting joy, sorrow, laughter, and anguish. At the end of my days, once again, I must pass into a state of dissolution. T his is the nature of the world of samsara.

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REACTIONS Our misery or happiness depends on how we react to external events and internal thoughts. We judge and label everything based on our reactions. Sometimes our reactions are so strong that they destroy us. But the real problem is in not understanding that reactions themselves come and go based on ever-changing circumstances.

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TRADITION All traditions, whether religious or secular, have developed to benefit human society. In the event that a tradition or system becomes harmful, there’s no need to insist on following it.

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THE ENVIRONMENT The environment is irreplaceable. All life forms on earth coexist in delicate balance. Although some habitats are naturally more abundant than others, we are degrading the environment by exploiting and polluting it, affecting the entire world irrespective of borders. For everyone’s sake, let’s stop polluting the environment. How foolish to destroy our planet – which has to sustain present and future generations. Together, let’s protect and safeguard the earth.

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GUIDANCE
Each person must find his or her own path. Nonetheless, seek guidance from wise and compassionate people and listen to them earnestly. This will help you find the best way to proceed – now and in the future.

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THE POINT OF ADVICE Ideally, advice is instruction tailored to the circumstances, both immediate and long term. The person giving advice should have the motivation to help others and the wisdom to distinguish right from wrong. The person receiving it should have the intelligence to understand it and the willingness to follow directions. It should be presented in just the right way, so that it is relevant to the situation at hand and easy to understand. Whatever it takes – either gently or harshly! Once the recipient sees both the benefits and the drawbacks of a course of action, the advice has accomplished its purpose.

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Some others may see the dharma as being like a spiritual massage. The way I see the dharma, however, is that intelligence and investigation are even more important than faith. To practice the dharma is to look into the content of one’s life in a very deep way. This is one of the reasons why we say, “The preliminaries are even more profound than the main practice.” First, one must get to know oneself. Then, having become familiar with oneself, one can live one’s life more deeply. Living one’s life more deeply is the meaning of dharma.

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DIALOGUE When you pose a question, you are simply asking for what comes to mind spontaneously as a response. Likewise, in reply I only state whatever comes to mind at that very moment. It is a spontaneous exchange. Apart from this, there is no true dialogue.

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From the Buddhist perspective the root cause of the environmental degradation the world faces now is ignorance and self-centredness. Naively, we think of "I", "me" and "mine", conceiving it as autonomous and independent, but if we carefully consider all the things we need in order to live, such as clothing and food, even the oxygen we breathe, we realise that our very survival depends on factors outside ourselves.

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The ideal which underpins Mahayana Buddhism is the aspiration to help and benefit as many sentient beings as possible, and for anyone who believes in that ideal, environmental protection is immediately relevant because the environment is the basis for the survival and well-being of all the sentient beings for whose welfare we are working. By protecting the environment we are indirectly serving the needs and welfare of all these other sentient beings who depend upon the health of the environment in which they live.

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True peace cannot be achieved by force or by merely invoking the word "peace." It can only be attained by training the mind and learning to cultivate inner peace. Peace is a calm and gentle state of mind.

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...if we keep a grateful attitude in mind,... we will be able to uphold, preserve, and spread the teachings of the practice lineage. Otherwise, we will turn the Dharma into an empty façade.

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A Nyingma lama once said that when we are really suffering and our minds are deeply disturbed, the only things which help are Shantideva’s Way of the Bodhisattva, and The Songs of Milarepa.

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The Buddha said that two things are essential: study and practice. Gampopa advised people to study first. The Kagyu is known as the practice lineage, and meditation plays a central role; it is the lineage of experience and realization. Like Milarepa, we have to receive the instructions, and then put them into practice. This involves hardship and effort.

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Dharma is actually something that transforms your mind.

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You become a better person when you live with the intention of being helpful and useful to other people.

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USE YOUR BRAIN Generally speaking, people are concerned with their own welfare. You cannot really know whether their advice is meant for your benefit – or for themselves. You may find some who appear to want to help you but actually have other intentions and others who sincerely mean well but lack the wisdom to give good advice. Taking this into account, it is better to use your own brain and investigate your situation than to rely on the advice of others. At least then you will have no regrets.

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BE OUR OWN GUIDE
Whether or not you go in a positive direction depends entirely on you. You have to be your own teacher and try to figure out what it takes to accomplish your goals. You have to be your own judge and try to get yourself to do the right thing and stop yourself from doing the wrong thing. Take responsibility for yourself. Only you know your own secrets; no one else can read your mind. If you want to make a change, don’t depend on the help of others without taking any initiative yourself.

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None of us can live our lives independently, without depending on others at all. None of us have complete control over what will happen in our lives because everything is interdependent upon everything else.

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EMPTINESS AND DEPENDENT ARISING
When Buddhism talks about Emptiness, it’s not talking about a type of nonexistence whatsoever. Rather, the teachings on Emptiness point to the notion of possibility: that anything can happen.

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In our relationships with others, there is both benefit and harm. We could concentrate on the harm that has been done to us by other sentient beings, but there really is not much profit we can gain from that if we focus exclusively on the harmful relationships that we have... But conversely, if we focus on the beneficial connections that exist between us and other sentient beings, then that is something that can bring a profit or benefit to us. It can help us increase our appreciation in our heart, increase our loving kindness and compassion.

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If someone were to hit us over the head with a stick, we wouldn’t get angry at the stick. We’d get angry at the person who hit us. And in the same way, if our partner expresses anger towards us, we shouldn’t get angry at our partner, because they are under the sway of disturbing emotions and the ignorance toward the true nature of things that is the root of that anger. So thinking in this way, we can gear our response in a fresh way, from a more positive angle and see these moments of anger as opportunities... to shift the trajectory of the relationship in a more positive way. If we can do that, if we can respond in new ways like that, then I think we can really stand a chance of transforming our relationship in a positive way.

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The practice of Dharma is like exercising or carefully following a course of training, which is powerful and deeply significant. For example, if you are in the military, you train every day. In the same way, with the Dharma, you have to train your mind daily. Not just to relax but to be able to relate to whatever is happening around you. You integrate your practice with whatever conditions you meet so that you are not carried away by them and do not lose your patience.

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Hardships are inevitable for everyone, but the key is how we meet them. If we can maintain hope and optimism we will see hardships as opportunities to meet new situations and a new way to think about things.

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Usually when we try to identify what samsara is, we are always pointing our fingers outside of ourselves to the outer world, such as physical attributes in our environment: the rocks, mountains, cliffs and so forth, and we are not looking within to see what samsara is…. But in my opinion, an understanding of samsara doesn’t involve pointing your finger to the outside world. It involves looking at your own mind and identifying your own experience of karma and mental afflictions, and seeing where that continuous cycle of karma and mental afflictions takes you.

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Aspiration for the World
Over the expanse of the treasured earth in this wide world, May benefit for beings appear like infinite moons’ reflections, Whose refreshing presence brings lasting welfare and happiness To open a lovely array of night-blooming lilies, signs of peace and joy. Descending from a canopy of white clouds, the gathering of two accumulations, May these true words, like pearled drops of light or pouring rain, Falling in a lovely park where fortunate disciples are free of bias, Open the flowers of friendship so that well-being and joy blossom forth.

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When we think about faith, then faith is like a feeling we have in our minds. But devotion isn't just a feeling. It's not just an emotion. It's something that we put into practice with our body and speech.

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The more you learn, the more you are able to solve problems and deal with difficult situations. Alongside your main area of focus, why not also study something else just for the fun of it?

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Animals react to pain and pleasure just as we do. We enjoy their company as companions and friends, and they are indispensable to the planet’s ecosystem. Do whatever you can to prevent the extinction of any animal species. After all, future generations will hold us accountable.

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Take responsibility for creating and promoting situations that benefit society. Likewise, try to eliminate and uproot situations that harm others. This is the duty of each and every one of us and paves the way to a better future.

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True peace cannot be achieved by force or by merely invoking the word “peace.” It can only be attained by training the mind and learning to cultivate inner peace. Peace is a calm and gentle state of mind.

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Sometimes when we practice dharma we think that we need to show some sort of external or physical sign of it. We pay a lot of attention to the rituals and these actions of our body and speech. This is practicing dharma when we're focusing outside. But instead what we need to do is turn our attention inwards. We need to see whether what we're doing is functioning as an antidote to the afflictions or not. We need to see whether we are taming our mind or not. We need to see whether our mind is improving, getting kinder, or not. If we don't look at it in this way then there's no benefit to doing these actions – we think that we are trying to do the dharma, but actually we are just making a show with our body and speech. We are putting on appearances, and that's all we really take an interest in. And the moment that happens, this becomes spiritual materialism.

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A genuine monk should have devotion to Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha; confidence in the law of karma; sincerity in following the Buddhist teachings; and compassion for all beings. Monks lacking in any of these qualities are monks in name only. In fact, they are impostors and deceive their devoted followers.

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If we are going to practice the dharma, this is what it means and we need do this now in our lives. We might think that we have our whole lives to do it, but we need to start doing it from today. This is not something that we should think, 'Oh I can start tomorrow, or I can start the next day, or I can do this when I'm older.' We need to do dharma practice now. We cannot postpone this. We need to start it right now.

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The essence of Buddhism is being able to distinguish what it is that we need to do from what it is that we need to give up. It is taking up virtue and giving up non-virtue. We need to identify what it is that will bring benefit to ourselves and others, and then we need to do that. We also need to identify what it is that will harm ourselves and others, and then we need to give that up. So you can condense it all into doing what is beneficial and giving up what is harmful. We need to know what the essence of dharma is, and then bring it into our lives.

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The best thing is to be in the present. It's better if we don't have too high hopes for the past or the future situations. It's better just to stay in the present. Whatever is right in front of our eyes, we need to be able to see the good in it. If we can see the good in it, then good things will be able to occur from that. I really feel that it helps to try to just have a simple outlook on life.

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When, because of external or internal circumstances there comes some sort of a change, we need to be able to go along with that change. So whatever happens, we go with the flow of events. If we are able to do this, then in our own mind we can be more relaxed. We can be more expansive. When we go along with that we can be comfortable, relaxed and spacious in our minds. If we are able to do this then we are able to be happy, and to have a comfortable and content life.

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In this Information Age people are developing closer and closer connections with each other. All the people in the world are seeing that they have greater mutual connections. It has become very clear to us that these are deeper and stronger connections. When we think about our own good acts and wrong acts, we can see more clearly how they have an effect on the world. We can see that the individual things that we do are connected to the benefit or the harm of the world. They are deeply connected to the happiness and suffering that is in the world. The good and bad acts of one person are becoming the good and bad of the world. When we examine the good and bad that we do, we can see that it is becoming even more profound and even more vast. It's the good and the bad that people do that determine on a fundamental level if there is peace or happiness in the world. t's very tightly connected.

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These days in the 21st century it's a very materialistic time. Most of the time, we don't really know what true happiness is. Many people have the idea that external things and external conditions will bring them happiness, and will lead them to the real meaning. But when we think about material things, the more we have of these things the more disturbances we have. The more difficulties we have. Things get more and more problematic. We have more and more busyness, and what happens then is that we lose ourselves. We lose our nature, what really is there.

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When we say practice, it's not all that helpful for us just to hear the dharma, or listen to the dharma. It's not all that helpful for us to develop some kind of understanding about the dharma. What we really need to do is join the dharma with our own being, and then we need to practice that over and over again. Joining our being with the dharma, so that we can become habituated and familiarized with it – this is what is most important.

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The student needs to have faith and longing, and if this faith and longing come together then I don't think that sort of a student will have any difficulty finding a genuine, authentic Lama. The reason is that all the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas are ready at all six times of day and night to do things to benefit sentient beings. They're all ready and waiting. If you have both faith and longing then they'll all come rushing towards you to help you. You just have to open that door of faith and devotion.

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When we are trying to figure out what the essence or the meaning of life really is, then it's not just a question of looking inside oneself. Sometimes we have to look outwards to see the meaning we hold for others. We have to look in all different directions to be able to see what is good about our life.

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Within our beings, all of us, there are these uncontrived, natural roots of virtue, these instinctive seeds of innate goodness. We still look for something outside ourselves, not knowing how priceless and how important what we already have is. We need to look at these seeds of virtue in our mind as if they were as rare as a Buddha.

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We say I am going to do everything I can to free sentient beings from suffering. We say I am going to do this. We make the commitment. We take the vow. Once we have taken this vow, if then, without thinking anything about it, we just go ahead and eat meat, then that is not okay. It is something that we need to think about very carefully.

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There is nothing like the love of a mother or father. Parents endure great hardships for us and provide everything we need. They raise us and teach us all of life’s essentials. Their care and attention cannot be compared with anything else. How ungrateful and callous not to repay their kindness!

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Living in the present world of technology, illusions have become amplified and multiplied. In the present world that we live in, the causes for all kinds of thoughts, confusions and illusions of reality have increased many times over. For instance, when different companies produce new technologies or gadgets, obviously their main strategies are to cater to that confusion that we have, to be able to lure our already-confused minds and manipulate or deceive even further. This is the purpose of all kinds of advertisements, to create all kinds of thoughts. More than ever, for unguarded, vulnerable and confused minds there are all kinds of objects of distraction. Therefore, what is important more than ever is to begin to recognize one’s surroundings in that way, and instead of getting totally carried away by the external circumstances around us, we learn to turn a little bit more inward. We start to get in touch with our own basic ground, and then begin to look inwardly and find the possibility of peace within ourselves. Looking inwardly, we begin to move towards getting a sense of who we are, of finding ourselves within. This approach is helpful.

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All people without exception are endowed with basic, wholesome potential. Buddhism can be instrumental in playing a role to help cultivate this potential. While in the world we have some general differences in terms of different ethnicities, religions and cultures, what is fundamentally most important is common among all people. For instance, all people, and for that matter all beings without exception, genuinely and truly long for happiness and wellbeing. All people without exception don’t want to suffer. They want to be free from suffering. That is natural to all. Therefore we must respect and appreciate the fundamental equality of all people, who are equal in wishing for happiness and equal in wishing for freedom from suffering. Buddhism comes from that point of view, of what is fundamentally common among people. That is the principle Buddhism is based on, and its message is how to be able to cultivate our potential for happiness and wellbeing, and how to become free from suffering.

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Basically, we have to figure out a way to set a limit to our individual freedom or acknowledge the fact that our individual freedom does have limits. The meaning of individual freedom isn’t simply that we can do whatever we want, obviously. And even if we didn’t acknowledge this limit ourselves internally, we would come up against that limit in a practical way in the world.

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My dream is for us to begin to understand that now we live in a world where everything has become very close. We’re closely-knit, and it should be apparent. My personal feeling is that we should be able to see this particular century or age as an age of sharing. The time has come for us to live to share. In the past we can say that we haven’t gotten the full picture, we haven’t understood, we haven’t been able to piece things together. But right now we don’t have that excuse. It is quite apparent how closely we are knit, how interdependently we are living. And so, since we don’t have that excus then we must attend to what’s happening on the ground, in reality. We may be practicing different spiritual traditions, but we are equally human. We may be of different races, but we are fundamentally and equally human beings. What is common among us, our fundamental commonality, is more important than superficial differences that we have. We just have to accept the fact that we are equally human. Living how we’re living right now we are more like family, always affecting each other. More than ever in this time we have to learn to live in harmony together, live in peace together, learn to give and take, and learn to share.

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In order to meditate, it is very important to first identify what we are meditating on. If we meditate without identifying that, there is the danger it will become idiot meditation or idiot Dharma. If we do not first fully comprehend through listening and contemplating the meaning of what we are meditating on, how can we practice?

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From the fundamental perspective of what makes us human, or what constitutes us as human beings, there really aren't any bad people in terms of our primordial nature or in terms of the way were in the beginning.

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In essence all of us want to be good people and accomplish the benefit of others. But the trick is to ask ourselves the question, „How do I do that?“

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The objective of the dharma is to be able to remove the superimpositions that were created by our thoughts and concepts, and return to our natural ground, in the manner of coming home to one's original abode. To work with our habits in this way is the practice of loving kindness and compassion.

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If we are principled and of good conduct, then without needing to announce that we are doing so, our activities naturally speak for themselves.

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To secure our own happiness and causes of happiness, we must first act to create wholesome causes of happiness. We must create virtue. We must engage in good conduct. We must generate wholesome attitudes. These are important.

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Whether one is a monastic or a layperson, it is very important that we have affection for one another and believe in one another’s value. However much fighting there is in the world, however much darkness there is, we must be able to serve as small lamps in that darkness.

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I have the thought that if there were no one in the world who was not duplicitous or devious, then the world would be hopeless, pointless and futile. So with this thought, I keep the aspiration that no matter what I encounter, I must be free of duplicity or deceit, and a source of hope within the world.

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In brief, we need to get along with each other. For example, if you need to prepare some food and do not yourself know how to cook, there is no choice but to pin your hopes on someone else. If that person is ill-tempered and angry, and in addition to not cooking fights with you, it really hurts, doesn’t it? It would be difficult to live in a society where everyone always scowls at each other, wouldn’t it?

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In the case of a spiritual friend or guru, they are a model for us to look at; simply an example for us to emulate. They are not like a lord who rules over our every action and thought. It's not the case that the spiritual friend is there just to give us orders, and our job is just to follow their orders and obey the whim of their every command, but rather the spiritual friend is an example to inspire us so that we can emulate their qualities.

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The Buddha’s teachings were based entirely upon the fine distinctions among individuals that a compassionate eye can observe. That is to say that the Buddha taught always in ways that conform to the dispositions, interests, and specific situations of those beings for whom he was teaching at that time.

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We must recognize that without taming oneself, one cannot possibly tame others.

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Why is it more difficult to develop true love and compassion than to simply speak of them? It is because in order to cultivate these, we need to first transform those adverse conditions within us that inhibit their development.

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It is harder to get rid of kleshas such as hatred, jealousy, and desire than it is to get rid of mere external adversity unless we turn inward and work on ourselves internally. As long as we fail to do that, and are focused only on externals, it is very difficult to develop true love and compassion.

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We could say that it is equally important in the long run, for our own good and the good of others, that we are initially kind to ourselves.

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Great compassion is of great importance to bodhisattvas at the beginning of the path, throughout the path, and at the culmination of the path.

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Much of our work is based on the use of our brains, by which I mean our intelligence. But compassion is something that arises or is present at a much deeper level of the mind, very much just as the roots of a tree — unlike its branches — are present within and beneath the ground.

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Love and compassion are like seeds within us. Like the seed of a tree, these seeds require nurturing so that they can develop. We develop the seeds of love and compassion through patience, through diligence, and through compassionate action.

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Bodhisattvas have no goal whatsoever other than the benefiting of others. Because of that, it is said that these courageous bodhisattvas are happy even in samsara. Why? Because their only concern is to be of benefit for others and they can achieve that most effectively by remaining in samsara. Since remaining in samsara brings about the achievement of their only goal, they are happy to do so.

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If you truly know why you are doing your practice, then you understand how deep the relationship is between your practice and your life, and how your practice is helping you to live a good life. It's very important that you know and understand what you are doing, and what the goal of practice is. The danger is that if religion becomes just a tradition or a custom that you follow, then you don't see the benefits of practice on a personal level.

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Each person must find his or her own path. Nonetheless, seek guidance from wise and compassionate people and listen to them earnestly. This will help you find the best way to proceed – now and in the future.

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If one attempts to cultivate compassion for others, love for others without having compassion and love for oneself, one will have no basis within oneself for that cultivation.

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Kindness to oneself means undertaking the responsibility for one’s own liberation.

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If we want to achieve a state of liberation and nirvana that is noble, we need to accept responsibility for the benefiting of others.

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We define compassion as “the wish to liberate all beings in samsara…” Since we are still within samsara, we qualify as objects of our own compassion just as much as others do. Therefore, I think that we have a responsibility both to take care of others and to take care of ourselves.

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We could literally translate the term compassion སྙིང་རྗེ་ as “noble heart.”

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The fact that you have the intention to work for others is important. Act on your wholesome intentions and altruistic impulses. If you have the thought of benefiting society, that is significant. Nurture and treasure that thought, and act on it as best you can. Doing so will certainly change you, and that in itself can be the start of the change you want to see in your world.

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Ultimately, there is nothing and no one with whom we are not connected. The Buddha coined the term

“interdependence”
to describe this state of profound connectedness. Interdependence is the nature of reality. It is the nature of human life, of all things and of all situations. We are all linked, and we all serve as conditions affecting each other.

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I think the main theme of all traditions is to bring about a recognition of authentic reality, to bring us closer and closer to a direct knowledge of how things really are, to remove the darkness of our ignorance and to bring us closer to one another, to give us a greater empathy and greater understanding for one another.

90

Not to be moved at any condition, so desire will not be arise. Akshobhya is the Buddha without anger. Because of practicing endurance, he achieve all the solemn merits.

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Our body and mind activities continuously renew in every second. Everything in the past are long gone, why should we get entangled so hard? Why not deploy a whole new life today, in here and now!

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Quarrels and fights between sect and lineage is the greatest sin among all fighting.

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If we do not understand samsara is illusion. Even if we try do the meditation of getting rid ego, our Dharma practice will not be stable, we can not discover the real power of Buddhadharma. While practicing, we must pay careful attention and do not substitute "holding to the concept of the ego" with "attachment to (the reality of) dharmas." If we are hold to Dharma, then we will create the cause of "egocentrism" rather than get rid the cause of "egocentrism".

94

Even if someone really hate you, it is best for you: to rise patient and create some space for others in our mind. If we do so, it helps to reduce hostility in us and other's anger. After all, love and compassion are in all sentient beings, we must treasure these innate qualities, this will bring great benefit to our self and to others.

95

However much fighting there is in the world, however much darkness there is, we must be able to serve as small lamps in that darkness.

96

Being a Buddhist, we must truly understand and accept impermanence. We must develop the ability to face the changes that naturally occurs and to relax, accept and learn from situation arise from surrounding.

97

the esoteric part of Dharma outside, remove the sufferings in our mind. but it is to

One should not seek

98

Liberation does not refer to somewhere outside we can go. The so-called liberation in dharma is the accomplishment of freedom in our mind. Therefore, liberation is present in the everyone's mind. But because it is covered by various sufferings, two obscuration and habitual tendency, it make liberation unable to reveal. If one's obscuration is removed, the merit from liberation will naturally arise and be liberated from self-nature. So we can also say that away from defilement is the liberation of self-nature.

99

Our behavior at any moment can become a turning point for being good or evil.

100

Remembering Dharma at the time of suffering is not truthful; Remembering Dharma at the time of happiness is truthfulness.

101

People's greatest suffering in life is because of too much confusion in mind; their mind is unable to calm down. That's why the happiness we wanted is always difficult to get. We think that happiness is to purchase a new car, to buy a palatial mansion, or to find a mate and live with a married life. But you can see that some people got all of these and they are not really happy. So, happiness is in our mind, once we subdue emotional conflicts, we will obtain happiness.
"Precious Garland of Supreme Path"

102

It is impossible to have long life by just obtaining the Buddha Amitayu empowerment. Conditions needed for having long life depend on whether one is able to generate a thought to treasure sentient beings, and try to minimize behavior in harming other beings. With such, one will be able to get fruition of long life. Apart from this, to get long life if only obtaining the long life Buddha empowerment is something even I do not believe.

103

Living in a world of interdependence has very specific implications for us. It means our actions affect others. It makes us all responsible for one another.

104

When you are dreaming of what is possible for your life, you should know that anything is possible. You may not always feel it or see it, but you never for a single moment lack the capacity to change course. Your life is subject to infinite revision.

105

Many people have the idea that they lack what they need in order to start working toward their dreams. They feel they do not have enough power, or they do not have enough money. But they should know that any point is the right starting point. We can start from nothing. Whatever we have, wherever we are — that is the place we can start from.

106

Contentment
is an incredible wealth that we don’t have to pay for, or seek anywhere outside ourselves. The natural resources to create this wealth are the inner riches of our own mind.

107

A spiritual practitioner needs to uphold the view, maintain an altruistic attitude, and have a peaceful and serene mind.

108

The entire Buddhist dharma can be summarized by the instruction to give up harming others and to benefit them.

109

To be true heroes, we need to generate a noble aspiration. We resolve with all our heart to work to benefit others, no matter what. A truly noble resolve can produce noble conduct. Those who harbor noble aspirations for the world and engage in noble conduct are what we call “bodhisattvas”.

110

Being grateful for the kindness of others and recognizing a close and ancient connection with all living beings, we can express our gratitude by thinking, “I will lead all living beings out of samsara and bring them into awakening.”

111

Today, lots of people like to learn meditation, they sit upright, both hand folded in meditative mudra; But, what is real essence of meditation? It is to recognize the good and evil from our motives and make a decision on what to take and what to abandon. Thus, the starting point of meditation to watch and observe our own mind.

112

What is Buddhism? Those forefathers of lineage told us that "Buddhism is to understand dharma scriptures and not to use it as knowledge for debate. All the scriptures help us to put the teachings into actual practice, even one has just learned one single method, you might use it to tame our own mind. You maybe have one opportunity to receive a session of teaching or one single lecture, but you must make this lecture become your method in mind taming.

113

Holding grudge is not good. One must remember to be grateful, repay the debt of gratitude, have loving kindness and compassion, these are what we should keep in mind, but one deliberately chose not to remember it, those we should not remember, like how others treat you badly, one always keep something like this in mind. This is torturing ourselves.

114

Rejoicing
is when we see or hear any about benevolent actions, the happiness and joyfulness naturally arise in our heart.

115

ཀ་རྨ་པ་མཁྱེན་ནོ་
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