“If we think about our conceptions, they are not stable or something we can rely on. They are not firm because they are dualistic, and duality is deluded. Therefore our conceptions are not perfect. For example, in the early part of our liveswemayhavebelievedinsomething100%,thinking that it was perfect.Yet later in life we might completely refute this and adopt the opposite idea. So what happened? Who created that? Who made that? It was none other than our mind. Deluded mind is not reliable. If we think something is 100% beautiful,and then change our mind 100% the other way, it is not real. Every creation and division comes from our deluded, unreliable mind.
The Dzogchen and Vajrayana teachings say that the first thing practitioners must realize is that all appearances and everything they hear and think is their mind. This does not mean that we have to think that this tree is our mind, this stone is our mind, or this building is our mind. At this time, just think that the perceptions of the tree are our mind, the perceptions of the stone are our mind, and the perceptions of the building are our mind. Similarly, the perceptions of happiness are our mind, and the perceptions of suffering are our mind.
In thinking this way, we may wonder where all the stones in the earth come from. As we have heard so many times, they come from atoms, and atoms come from emptiness. Each atom is in the state of emptiness. Therefore trees are emptiness, stones are emptiness, and mountains are emptiness because they are all constructed from emptiness. Everything is empty—even our ignorance and perceptions of duality. Our intellectual knowledge doesn’t see it this way exactly, but that is the reality, whether we believe it or not. Our experience is structured by our conceptions, names, and labels, which we turn into compounded things. However, if we investigate deep down, we see that these names and labels come from the mind. For this reason, the Prajnaparamita teachings say, “Form is emptiness, and emptiness is form.”
This knowledge of appearance being the mind is very important. It is not just important to think this way—we must also really believe that all appearances are mind, whether they are good or bad. We should not think this way just because the Buddha or Jigme Lingpa said it. We need to look closely at this point and realize it ourselves. Why do we have to think this way? Why is this realization important? Because it completely breaks our ego fabrication, our perceptions of duality, and our clinging to things as solidly existing. This is what Dzogchen is pointing out. It undermines the solidity of the ego and the solidity of grasping to subject and object by pointing out and knowing that all appearances are our mind. Mind is unreliable and mind is not firm, therefore appearances are unreliable and appearances are not firm.”
Venerable Khenpo Rinpoches
Supreme Wisdom: Commentary on Yeshe Lama (pghs 196-198)
Photo of Ven. Khenpo Tsewang Dongyal Rinpoche at Tashi Choling.
Palm Beach Dharma Center
February 24, 2019
The topics discussed include:
1. Three Kayas
2. Where does karma begin?
3. Relationship of Negative Emotions and Wisdom
4. How long can the mind be separated from a body before it reincarnates?
5. What are the four extremes of existence, nonexistence, both, and neither?
6. What does the “dharmakaya beyond mind” mean?
7. Does wisdom mind guide us during karmic rebirth and our life?
8. How do we integrate our practice with our work?
9. Does the sense of there being a “perceiver” during meditation lessen with practice?
10. How to cut through attachment and aversion once you’ve been introduced to the “view”?
11. Pure relative truth vs. impure relative truth?
Photograph by Greg Kranz.
The Sangha of the Padmasambhava Buddhist Center of Tennessee was so delighted to enjoy an incredible Day of Miracles meditation honoring and praising the Buddha Shakyamuni last night at the Yeshe Tsogyal Temple in Nashville.
Join us for weekly meditations, study, and time with our wonderful community.
Photos by Stuart Bernstein, Sandy Mueller, and Melina Sierra.
• Light of Peace: How Buddhism Shines in This World
(History of Buddhism)
• Ceaseless Echoes of the Great Silence: A Commentary on the Heart Sutra Prajnaparamita in Spanish
• Commentary on Mipham Rinpoche’s Wheel of Analytic Meditation
• Walking in the Footsteps of the Buddha: The Path to Freedom
(Essential Foundational Teachings of the Buddha)
• Commentary on Nagarjuna’s Letter to a Friend
(Practical Advice on Practicing Dharma in Daily Life)
• Commentary on Jigme Lingpa’s Bellowing Laugh of the Dakini Chod Practice
Losar Tashi Deleg!
Happy Tibetan Royal Year 2146! Year of the Earth Pig!
from Ven. Khenpo Tsewang Dongyal Rinpoche
“May the Buddha’s teachings spread widely,
And the aims of all practitioners be fulfilled.
May all difficult situations of all beings be pacified,
And may all excellence be attained just as we wish.”
– Terdak Lingpa
Wishing everyone health, wealth, joy, and bodhichitta realizations!
from Ven. Khenpo Tsewang Dongyal Rinpoche, the Sangha of Padma Samye Ling, & the Padmasambhava Buddhist Center!
The Tashi Prayer: The Verses of the Eight Auspicious Ones
by Mipham Rinpoche
If you chant this once before beginning an activity, it will be easily accomplished exactly as you wish. Be sure to keep this in mind.
“OM I prostrate to the entire assembly of the Buddha, Dharma, and Noble Sangha
Who abide in the auspicious pure lands of the ten directions,
Which are the spontaneously perfect and pure nature of all apparent existence.
May everything be auspicious for myself and others.
Drönmei Gyalpo, Tsalten Döndrup Gongpa,
Jampai Jengyi Pal, Gewar Drakpa Paldampa,
Kunla Gongpa Jacher Drakpa Chen,
Lhunpo Tarpakpa Tsalrap Drakpai Pal,
Semchen Tamchela Gongpa Drakpai Pal, and
Yitsimpa Dzepa Tsalrap Drakpai Pal,
Merely hearing your names increases what is auspicious and glorious.
Eight Sugatas, I prostrate to you.
Youthful Manjushri, Glorious Vajrapani,
Lord Avalokiteshvara, Protector Maitreya,
Akashagarbha, and Most Noble Samantabhadra—
In your hands, you gracefully hold an utpala flower, vajra, white lotus, naga tree,
Jewel, moon, sword, and sun.
You are supreme in bestowing auspiciousness and success.
Eight Bodhisattvas, I prostrate to you.
The supremely precious canopy, the auspicious golden fish,
The wish-fulfilling vase of goodness, the exquisite kamala flower,
The conch of fame and glory, the perfect knot of prosperity,
The unfading victory banner, and the all-powerful wheel of dominion—
Holding these eight precious and supreme symbols
You generate joy with offerings to the buddhas of all directions and times.
Glory increases by recollecting your qualities of grace and so forth.
Eight Auspicious Goddesses, I prostrate to you.
Great Brahma, Shambu, Narayana,
Thousand-eyed Indra, King Dhritirashtra,
King Virudhaka, King Virupaksha the Lord of Nagas,
And King Vaishravana—you hold the divine emblems of
A wheel, trident, short spear, vajra,
Lute, sword, stupa, and victory banner.
You bring auspiciousness and increase everything good above, below, and on the ground.
Eight Guardians of the World, I prostrate to you.
Now, as we begin this activity,
May all obstructing and harmful influences be pacified,
May our wishes be fulfilled, may splendor increase, and may everything be accomplished just as we desire.
May there be perfect ever-growing happiness and peace.”
“The three wisdoms of (1) listening, (2) contemplation, and (3) meditation are very important, particularly in these degenerate times. The great master Longchenpa said that in ancient times when the time was perfect, students would instantly achieve realization the moment they received teachings. Why did this happen? The teachers were highly enlightened beings, the students were full of devotion, enthusiasm, and joy, and without any doubt or hesitation, and the timing and circumstances were perfect. Yet according to the teachings of the Buddha, in these degenerate times, we generally don’t have as great of teachers and students as in ancient times. Everything is a little dim. Therefore we need these three wisdoms to usher our realization and understanding. We should not see them as insignificant—instead we should take them to heart and apply them in practice.”
“. . . Chronologically between Longchenpa and the great master Jigme Lingpa there was about a 300-year span of time. However, Longchenpa achieved total enlightenment through Dzogchen and merged with the dharmakaya. When we reach the dharmakaya state, birth, old age, sickness, and death are just conceptions— they’re like jokes, in a way. Because of this, the wisdom body of Longchenpa was able to appear to Jigme Lingpa and give these teachings and blessings. Jigme Lingpa was like the second Longchenpa, and Yeshe Lama is his teaching.
Of course, many of you already know this lineage history, but it is very important to explain it in Buddhism, particularly in Dzogchen. This teaching did not just happen, and it is not insignificant or just talk. This is a very precious teaching with a long history. It is a nugget of gold and the treasure of all the enlightened beings.”
Venerable Khenpo Rinpoches
Supreme Wisdom: Commentary on Yeshe Lama (pgs 393 and 195)