Making Life Meaningful

Making Life Meaningful

Date Posted:
June 2013

A student who had broken up with her boyfriend asked for advice on how to deal with it. She also asked for advice for her mother and for a center (non-FPMT) that didn’t have good energy. Rinpoche wrote the following card.

Dear Simone,
Pray to Tara for the center to be most beneficial for sentient beings.

Concerning your mother, your prayers have a lot of power because of the blood lineage, the guru/disciple relationship and having shared the same house and possessions. For her, pray that due to all the past, present and future merit of all sentient beings and the buddhas, your mother and family will be guided directly by Lama Tsongkhapa and will never be separate from the pure path pleasing all the buddhas. Pray for them never to be born in the lower realms and to receive enlightenment as quickly as possible. That’s everything, the conclusion. Of course, you can also pray for their long life, to be healthy, to meet Dharma and to actualize the clear light in this life.

Now for your meditation on lam-rim, to make your life meaningful, I would like to give this advice. Spend one month on the path of the lower capable being, from perfect human rebirth up to karma. Then five months on the path of the middle capable being, then three months on bodhicitta, then five months on emptiness. These topics are the main focus. Other topics are OK to do at the same time. Then come back and do them again until you gain renunciation—the main one—then bodhicitta and emptiness. Without renunciation, there’s no bodhicitta, but emptiness doesn’t depend so much on renunciation, generally.

Every day, do guru devotion meditation following the outlines, even if it’s only for 10-15 minutes; even if you are busy. First study Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand and Lama Tsongkhapa’s lam-rim [Lam-rim Chen-mo]. For emptiness, you need someone to teach you if you don’t understand it by reading books.

Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand is a commentary on lam-rim. Geshe Sopa’s [Steps on the Path to Enlightenment] is the most extensive commentary on lam-rim. First do guru yoga based on the Guru Yoga of Lama Tsongkhapa with the lam-rim prayer or from The Essential Nectar. You can use the lam-rim outline from Liberation also.

Do the guru yoga practice, then before the merit field dissolution, do guru devotion practice, then start from the perfect human rebirth. Practice guru devotion, then the path of the lower capable being from perfect human rebirth up to karma, then the path of middle capable being, before bodhicitta.

For bodhicitta, there are two techniques: the seven-point cause and effect instruction, beginning with equilibrium meditation, then the other is exchanging self and others.

Therefore, use the commentary plus the lam-rim outline or The Essential Nectar.

With much love and prayer…