The Need for Wisdom and Compassion (Audio and Unedited Transcripts)

By Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche
Tara Institute, Australia, June 3, 2006 (Archive #1585)

Lama Zopa Rinpoche gave these teachings at Tara Institute, Australia, June 3, 2006.

The Qualities of the Bhumis

So, [pause] the best protection to oneself, the best way of benefiting to oneself, greatest benefit to oneself, that is when you practice bodhicitta, in the daily life when your attitude is transformed into bodhicitta. [pause]

So, the simple example that, living the life, whatever you’re doing, whatever style of job you’re doing, whatever lifestyle one is living, but living the life with the attitude, oneself as a servant, regarding oneself as servant to obtain happiness to other sentient beings, oneself as servant obtaining happiness to other sentient beings, who is the most precious being, precious, most kind, most precious that I receive all my past happiness, present, future, all the happiness, then ultimate happiness, liberation, enlightenment, everything I receive. By knowing that, with that understanding then most precious than billions, than zillions, trillions of dollars, dollars or pounds or the mountains of gold, diamond or this size of earth gold, diamond, that this sentient being, whether it’s a person or animal or whatever, whichever type, that more precious than, no question about gold, diamond, mountains of diamond, gold, size of this earth, gold, diamond, no question. Even the most precious among the material possessions, most precious one, the incomparable, most precious one that is wish-granting jewel, like in the past the wheel-turning kings or those bodhisattvas, however, those who have merit, that’s similar to having a zillions dollars, you have to have good karma, merit, preliminary, you have to have merit, that much merit to have a zillion dollars. So same, to have $1,000, $100, you have to have the cause, the merit, as a preliminary. So, a billion, zillion dollars, you have to have that much more merit. So similar here, I mean, those who have the merit to find a wish-granting jewel under the ocean, then those who have merit then able to find. So by cleaning three ways all the dust then bad smell, all the things, cleaning three ways and then you put on the, on the fifteenth, which is full moon night, talking about the Tibetan fifteenth, means that day, you put on the top of the banner which is on top of the roof, then you, whatever you pray you receive, you receive all the needs, all the material needs, enjoyments. So it gets materialized. By your karma, by the person’s karma, so much merit, then power of that material, so it get materialized.

So, even, not just one, even numberless like this, fill the whole sky, now that much wealth and this one sentient being, whether it’s a person or animal or whatever other type of being, so this more precious than, no question about billions of dollars, even the wish-granting jewel where you get everything material enjoyments, filled the whole sky, so with that much wealth, even you own that much wish-granting jewel, filled the whole sky, with that alone you cannot, that can’t help, can’t stop your rebirth in the lower realms, reincarnating in hell, hungry ghost, animal, cannot stop. And even you own that much, with that alone you can’t get a higher rebirth. You cannot achieve liberation from samsara just by possessing that many skies of wish-granting jewels. And even you own that many wish-granting jewels, filled the whole sky, you can’t achieve enlightenment, cease all the gross, subtle mistakes of the mind, defilements, and complete all the qualities, means the omniscient mind you can’t achieve from this, just even you possess that much, just from this. But with this sentient being, with this person, that you can achieve, by practicing morality, that on the basis of this sentient being, you make a vow to not kill, to not steal, sexual misconduct, so forth, so by making a vow to not harm then, you take a vow on the basis of the object, sentient beings, so that means all the sentient beings. When we take a vow, lay vow, those five lay vows or any number that we take, however, on the object sentient beings I’m not going to harm, I’m not going to do killing, stealing, sexual misconduct, these, telling lies, so we make the vow on the object, sentient being. So here you practice morality, the sentient being helps you, by the kindness of this person you’re able to practice morality and you don’t get reborn in the lower realms, you get a higher rebirth. So whereas with that many, skies filled with wish-granting jewels you can’t. So, did not practice morality, even you practice charity, but did not practice morality or break the morality, then you experience in naga, animal, like that, get reborn naga, animal beings, where it’s a naga who has wealth, animal rebirth, so you don’t get a human rebirth.

So anyway, so then, achieving liberation, you achieve total liberation, cessation of all the sufferings, suffering of rebirth, old age, sickness and death, suffering of pain, suffering of change, pervasive compounding, the temporary samsaric pleasures, suffering of change, then pervasive compounding suffering, basis of the two previous types of sufferings. So, cessation of all these sufferings, cause, delusion and karma, everything, the ultimate the everlasting happiness, once you achieve this never decrease, forever you abide in this blissful state of peace. So you achieve this total liberation again by depending on the kindness of sentient beings. Then, the cause is again morality, higher training of morality, then the concentration, perfect meditation, the shamatha, then great insight, higher training of the wisdom, great insight. So again here, so all that basis is higher training of morality, so morality, as I mentioned before, same, on the basis of object sentient beings then you take a vow to not harm, to live in morality. So again, so the liberation, the middle of the path and the foundation, this, everything, by the kindness of sentient beings, this sentient being, you receive. So the whole sky filled with the wish-granting jewels can’t. So here, extremely unbelievable precious, more precious than sky filled with the wish-granting jewels.

Then, you see, on the jewel you cannot generate compassion. There’s no mind. Wish-granting jewel, the billion dollars doesn’t have mind, so there’s no suffering so you can’t generate compassion on that. There’s no opportunity to generate compassion on the billion dollars or sky filled with the wish-granting jewels. But here this person, this sentient being, obscured mind, suffering, so you can develop compassion, gives opportunity to develop compassion. And then from that, then bodhicitta, gives opportunity to have realization of bodhicitta. Then you enter in the Mahayana path, the five paths to enlightenment, and then ten bhumis, all that, so each of those paths, those incredible qualities, then the ten bhumis, by achieving the first bhumi that there’s eleven things you can, you have qualities to do, I don’t remember the whole thing. That able to explain, the first bhumi, who achieved the right-seeing path, the third, arya path, then achieved the first bhumi that can explain, hundreds of different teachings can give to sentient beings. Then, able to go to pure land of Buddha, hundreds of different pure lands you can go, and you can do hundreds of different meditations. So I think I don’t remember, I have a very bad memory, so maybe….. [turning pages] So maybe I just briefly mention anyway. Those who have studied Madhyamika and in the commentary there is the bhumis, the qualities and how you achieve all those.

So then able to see, the meditator, the first bhumi, the bodhisattva who achieved first bhumi, able to see hundreds of buddhas. Then, receive the knowledge, receiving blessing of those hundreds of buddhas. Appears hundreds of different pure lands of buddha to that bodhisattva who achieved the first bhumi. And then able to shake the hundreds of different worlds. I think it’s just part of the qualities, showing the power, I think. And then abide in those worlds, abide a hundred eons. And able to see a hundred eons past, past hundred eons of life you can see, you can remember, and you can see a hundred eons of future life, future you can see, yours and I think others. Not only seeing yours but you can see others, a hundred of eons of past life and then future. Then, able to see with wisdom directly perceiving emptiness, able to see the phenomena with direct perception, the emptiness, the ultimate reality of the phenomena. But I think it can be also conventional truth, I’m not a hundred percent sure. Then, able to ripen hundreds of different sentient beings, able to ripen their mind in the Dharma and bring in the path. Then able to manifest hundreds of different bodies. Then around your body then there are hundreds of bodhisattvas around you. So there’s eleven things that a bodhisattva who achieved the first bhumi.

So then the second, a bodhisattva who achieved the second bhumi then the eleven things what can do, each one is a hundred times, now here who achieved the second bhumi can do a thousand times. So means can do, can go in a thousand pure lands of buddha, you can go and a thousand buddhas able to see, receive blessing; then a thousand different meditations you can do at the same time; and then a thousand different teachings you are able to give to others; a thousand sentient beings able to ripen the mind at the same time; and able to manifest a thousand times the body to others. So again a thousand bodhisattvas around. So quality is much more extensive.

Then the third bhumi, then 100,000 times, so the bodhisattva who achieved the third bhumi, so now here much more, the capacity is much more, 100,000 times, so able to see 100,000 buddhas, able to go to 100,000 pure lands of buddha, so everything like this, that able to give 100,000 different teachings to the sentient beings, able to ripen at the same time 100,000 sentient beings’ mind, so all that. So unbelievable, unbelievable benefit what you can do when you become the bodhisattva, the arya bodhisattva, the third bhumi.

Then you has received fourth bhumi, the bodhisattva who received fourth bhumi then ten million like that, ten million, che wa, ten million, everything is ten million but not just ten million but che wa gya, a hundred times ten million, the buddhas you are able to see, that many pure lands you’re able to go and make offerings, prostrations to all those buddhas, so anyway, able to manifest that many, a hundred times ten million bodies you’re able to manifest and that many sentient beings you are able to ripen, so all that.

Then the fifth bhumi is then able to, a thousand times of ten million buddhas able to see, and a thousand times ten million buddha’s pure lands you are able to go, so everything like that, so able to give a thousand times ten million different teachings give sentient beings, ripened a thousand times ten million sentient beings’ minds and manifest your body a thousand times ten million to benefit for sentient beings. So then the arya bodhisattva who reached the sixth bhumi then you’re able to, all these qualities increase 100,000 times of ten million, che wa bum, 100,000 times ten million, so that many times pure lands, then able to see buddhas, then able to give different teachings that many times, manifest the body that many times, so forth, so 100,000 times of ten million everything.

Now the bodhisattva seventh bhumi, who achieved the seventh bhumi, ?che wa trak trik bun ta, so like this, ?trak trik is, I think, one hundred billion, I think. So like this, 100 million, ten times a hundred million is one tre bum, ten tre bum is a great tre bum, okay. Now ten great tre bum is one ?trak trik. So how much is it? [Student: A hundred billion.] Yeah, a hundred billion, I think. One hundred billion. So then the ten ?trak trik is called a great ?trak trik, then ten great ?trak trik is one called ?rab don. So here now, a seventh bhumi bodhisattva, arya bodhisattva who achieved the seventh bhumi, so that means you become that, when you achieve that level, then we are able to, ?che wa trak trik bun ta, so able to see buddhas, all the, go to the pure lands, able to reveal the different Dharma, able to do also concentrations, different concentrations, manifest, everything, so how many is there? So ten million, it doesn’t stop there, ten million, like that, how many times? One hundred billion. Now it doesn’t stop there! One hundred billion, like that, 100,000. So that many, even before becoming enlightened, during bodhisattva’s time, how much you are able to benefit for sentient beings. It’s just am-a-a-zing! So it’s beyond what we can, beyond our imagination.

So that’s why we need to meditate on the path, the whole thing, we need to meditate on lam-rim, the three principles, the basis, renunciation, bodhicitta, right view, bodhicitta, then you enter in the Mahayana path, then you can get these opportunities.

So now here you can see , when we go through these qualities, there’s unbelievable things what you can do to help sentient beings, so many sentient beings, more you develop higher realization, capacity, unbelievable what you can benefit sentient beings, do many sentient beings, unbelievable, unbelievable. So therefore now, we don’t meditate on the path, you have all the opportunities to meditate on the path, to accomplish this, at least to leave positive imprint as much as possible, plant seed, then next life or the next of next, so anyway, sooner or later to have these realizations. You make preparation as much as possible this life. Read Dharma texts, those, read, study, learn, meditate, you can learn the whole path, those philosophies, extensive teachings, learn, but your practice start from the beginning, lam-rim, renunciation, renunciation to this life, guru devotion, renunciation to this life, next life, then bodhicitta, start from there. But study as extensive as possible, leave positive imprint to have attainment of those paths. So there here now we can see how it’s so important studying Dharma, if we want to help others, how it’s so essential to learn Dharma as extensive as possible. Of course, even you, of course these paths right now [snaps fingers], that you receive those levels now, practice and then ______, because you have to start from the beginning, step by step, practice.

So then now you can see at the same time, purpose of the center, purpose of the meditation center, where you learn all these philosophical teachings, where you learn lam-rim, how here becomes unbelievably important, that you can offer benefit like the sky, like the ocean, depthless, to sentient beings. Can you imagine? More higher realization without effort, I mean, ?with ?less effort. Unbelievable benefit you can offer sentient beings. So it’s silly, so it’s totally foolish, so like Bodhicaryavatara where Shantideva says, [Tibetan] so I don’t remember the next word. So what it’s saying is that by fortune, [Tibetan] by opportunity, by luck, by a miracle that this time received this precious human body, you’ve got it, precious human body and met Dharma, have found a virtuous friend showing the whole path to liberation, enlightenment, by luck happened. [Tibetan] After having received all this, then if you don’t, if one doesn’t train one’s own mind in virtue, [Tibetan] and if I didn’t train my mind in virtue, [Tibetan] maybe the last one I don’t remember. So, if one doesn’t train one’s mind in virtue, means in the path, collect virtue, collect the merit of wisdom and merit of virtue, you can think that, but also it means training the mind in the path, path which is virtue. Then it’s saying that if one doesn’t do that then there is no other more ignorant than this, in the life there’s no more ignorant than this. In the world, in the whole existence there’s no more ignorant than this. You have everything, opportunity, but you don’t do, you don’t practice. [Tibetan] Maybe next one is, There’s no more foolish, but I don’t remember a hundred percent this one. I think it might be something like that. [Tibetan] There’s no more, there’s no other, in the world, in the existence there’s no more foolish than this. All this incredible what you can benefit to others and help yourself and especially benefiting so many sentient beings more and more, deeper and deeper, what you can do if you develop this mind, which has all the potential, so there’s no more crazy than this. In the world, in the existence, there’s no more crazy than this, there’s no more deceiving, cheating yourself than this. There’s no more cheating, there’s no more deceiving than this, deceiving yourself. There’s no greater deceit than this in the world.

Yeah. So when the people, when they play football, when they’re able to put the ball in the goal, when they’re able to throw the goal in the, what do you call this one? [Students: “Goal posts”; “Net”; “Ring.”] Huh? [Student: Scoring ball.] Scoring ball? Scary ball. Anyway, same, you’re able to put it in this net or you’re able to throw there, inside this, either way. So once you’re able to throw the ball there, you see how people are. Sometimes I can’t, ecstatic but, even the expression of the body, I can’t differentiate suffering or , difficult, the expression of the body it’s so intensive, it’s so intensive like this, so can’t tell that’s happiness or suffering. So intensive. And hitting each other. So anyway, that goes like this, forget the whole world, So ecstatic, so this is what we should have every day in our life, ecstatic like that. That’s what we should have, should feel like that in every day, every hour, every minute, we should feel like that because having received a precious human body. Not just ordinary, not just a precious human body/