My very dear Peter,
Thank you for your kind email. I am sorry for the many eons of delay in replying. I know I sent you some general practices for your health, and now I have been able to check more extensively. When I checked, neither Western nor Tibetan medicine came out as beneficial for you. What did come out as good are these practices:
- Namgyalma long life: practice this well.
- Receive the Namgyalma jenang. Until you receive this you can still recite the mantra.
- You should recite two malas of the short Namgyalma mantra and recite the long mantra a few times. You need a jug of water beside you, and each time you finish one mala, then blow into the water. Then, you drink this water in the morning. After you get up, make sure this is the first thing you drink. Also, drink it before lunch, in the afternoon, and when you go to bed. You can sip two to three soup spoons of the water.
Namgyalma is a special deity to heal sicknesses that doctors are unable to heal or when they do not know the cause of the sickness. Practice Namgyalma for every disease or sickness, unknown diseases and known diseases. Through this practice you purify your negative karma and through that you can be healed.
If you email my assistant your address, she will mail you a photo of Namgyalma, or she can send it by email.
4. It came out very beneficial for you to take some Tibetan medicines:
a. Moon Crystal: three each week for three weeks, with two to three days’ break between each pill.
b. Rinchen Jumar precious pill—take one each week for five weeks. My assistant can post these to you if you give her your address.
5. It comes out very good for you to have four Medicine Buddha pujas done for you. You can ask the center in Dharamsala to request the Lama Gyupas at the tantric college to do this. My assistant can send you their email address. You need to make offerings to them to do this, so you need to arrange that with the center. Also, you could ask Kopan to do it, if that is easier.
6. You need to do one Medicine Buddha puja yourself. You can do this with the monk you know and some friends. I am also doing Medicine Buddha puja for you.
7. You need to recite the Thirty-five Buddhas’ names five times, plus the Seven Medicine Buddhas’ names every day. Recite the names and then, at the end, recite the confession prayer once. When you recite it, put your palms together in the mudra of prostration. This is extremely important for your purification. Of course, if you can do it with prostrations, that is unbelievably powerful, and you collect unbelievable merit by prostrating and reciting the Thirty-five Buddhas’ names. You purify many eons of negative karma. Each time you prostrate you purify defilements and negative karma that are preventing you from attaining the path to enlightenment. In this way, you are able to achieve enlightenment, so that you can liberate numberless sentient beings from each realm, from the oceans of samsara’s sufferings, and bring numberless sentient beings from each realm to full enlightenment. That is the purpose of practicing Dharma. One’s whole life purpose, of being born in the human realm, is for that, to liberate numberless sentient beings from each realm, from the oceans of samsara’s suffering, and then to bring everyone to full enlightenment. First, you need to achieve enlightenment, so to do that you need to attain the path, and for that you need to purify the defilements. Along the way, you purify your sickness and difficulties, that all come from negative karma. Your aim is to enlighten all sentient beings, and through this you achieve liberation from samsara and achieve all happiness. This all comes from purifying one’s negative karma. It is the negative karma that causes the difficulties and obstacles, and the only way to stop this is to purify the negative karma. By doing purification practice you don’t experience the negative karma at all, it is greatly reduced, or even completely purified. All this depends on how much one purifies.
8. The other thing you can do is transform suffering into happiness by thinking of the benefits of the problem.
There is more to come to this letter; I will dictate more tonight. My assistant is sending this now so you can get it quickly, and more will come very soon.
What makes your life most meaningful is meditation on the lam-rim, then to live your life with a bodhicitta motivation. That is the best.
With much love and prayers,
Second letter from Rinpoche
It is so powerful when you do good things, such as practice the good heart and practice ultimate wisdom by meditating on emptiness, reading teachings on emptiness, any virtuous activity you do to develop compassion, bodhicitta, and emptiness, the wisdom gone beyond. It is just unbelievable, there is so much purification. Also, obtaining your guru’s advice and following it is such powerful purification, like an atomic bomb.
It was mentioned by Buddha that if you practice morality, charity, perseverance, patience, and concentration, and practice the five paramitas for ten eons, just by listening to teachings on emptiness you collect far greater merit than from the previous practices. If you show the teachings on emptiness to other sentient beings, you collect even greater merit than having listened to teachings on emptiness. You can see that it is unbelievably powerful.
Each time you generate bodhicitta for all sentient beings, you collect limitless skies of merit. Then, whatever you do, such as eating, walking, working, going to the beach, or doing your practice, you collect limitless skies of merit with each action. It is so easy to collect so much merit, it is unimaginable, unbelievable!
Each time you follow your guru’s advice, that brings you closer to enlightenment, and more distant from samsara. Fulfilling your guru’s holy wishes is what collects the most extensive, greatest purification, and is such a quick way to achieve enlightenment. Along the way, it fulfills all one’s wishes and all one’s problems end. By doing actions such as meditation on emptiness, explaining emptiness, generating bodhicitta, and obtaining and following your guru’s advice, some heavy negative karmas that one has created, that would have caused one to be reborn in the lower realms for an inconceivable number of eons, having all those sufferings, are completely purified, or one experiences a catastrophe, a disaster, some problem in this life, in the form of sickness, etc. This is how it comes out, which of course is millions of time less suffering than being reborn in the lower realms.
It is said in the Sutra of Liberation that by practicing bodhicitta, some very heavy negative karma that you have created, that would have resulted in being reborn in the hell realms and experiencing unimaginable suffering, is purified, and you experience sickness in this life, or someone gets angry at you or criticizes you. In this way, you finish the negative karma. You can see how bodhicitta can purify karma that you have created, that would have caused you to be reborn in the lower realms.
In the Sutra Great Liberation from the Sorrowless State it says: Even negative karma that would definitely cause you to fall down into the lower realms can immediately be purified by bodhicitta. Even the negative karma that would have caused you to fall down into the lower realms is purified and one experiences just a headache. That means all the heavy negative karma that one has created, that would have resulted in being reborn in the lower realms and suffering for many eons, is purified by experiencing a headache. This means that you don’t have to be reborn in the lower realms and experience all the unbearable suffering for many eons.
In the Sutra Wisdom Mudra it says: One’s directly compounded negative karma, that one has created for numberless eons, is all purified, and one may experience merely sickness in the brain (headache) by generating bodhicitta. It does not mean only a headache, even having an unhappy mind, depression, or one’s mind being down is all from one’s heavy negative karma being purified. If someone criticizes you, abuses you, makes fun of you, or causes you problems, this is also all your negative karma being purified.
The Buddha explained to Maitreya: Those bodhisattvas who have karma to be born in the lower realms in the next life, all these negative karmas are purified.
“All these negative karmas” refers to many sicknesses, even just a problem, some kind of suffering, even what happens in one’s dreams. Just by experiencing that it is purified.
There is a story from one Sutra about a boy who wanted to do the same work that his father had done. The father had retrieved jewels from the ocean and had drowned. The son did not know what kind of work his father had done. The boy’s mother was concerned that her son would also drown if he did the same work, so the mother formed a business growing grass, and the son sold the grass. He got paid four golden coins and gave these to his mother. This happened four times. Then the son found out that in the past his father had worked on the ocean, finding jewels, and he wanted to go and do this. The mother grabbed her son’s feet and begged him not to leave, then the son beat his mother and left.
As he sailed on the ocean he saw an island with palaces and many beautiful things and many deva girls, who all asked him to stay there with them. He didn’t listen and left. Later he saw another island with the same things and girls, but he still went on. He saw two more similar islands, but he left each one. Then, he saw an island with a black iron fence around it and a man on the island whose head was being cut by a giant wheel. The wheel was turning and cutting the man’s head. He was experiencing unbearable pain. The son heard a karmic voice from the sky saying that the wheel was going to move onto his head and stay there for 60,000 years because of the karma of having beaten his mother.
The son generated bodhicitta, thinking: When this wheel comes on my head, may I experience this pain for all others who also experience this pain.” Immediately the wheel moved away from above his head and went into the sky. His negative karma was immediately purified just by that thought. That is unbelievable, the benefit is just incredible—liberation. This was because of the power of bodhicitta.
The previous four islands that he saw, with the many beautiful things, were the result of having offered the gold coins to his mother four times. The last island that he saw was the result of him hitting his mother. This story is to prove the benefits of cherishing others and the shortcomings of the self-cherishing thought. If he hadn’t generated bodhicitta, then he would have had to experience the wheel cutting his head for 60,000 years. It is amazing. Can you imagine the power of bodhicitta? You should read and meditate on The Bodhisattva’s Way of Life by Shantideva.
Also, it says: The extremely inexhaustible negative karma one has created is purified by relying on bodhicitta. This is how you achieve liberation, by depending on that (bodhicitta). You are liberated in that minute or moment. The conscientious, mindful ones should rely on this (bodhicitta). It is like the fire at the end of the world, how the heavy negative karma is burned up. Even if one would have definitely been reborn in the lower realms, by relying on bodhicitta for one second, it is purified, and there are innumerable benefits. This is explained to Norsang by Maitreya—the Savior Mindful One.
Also, especially if you practice tong-len—taking other sentient beings’ sufferings, as well as the causes of suffering, karma and delusion, then giving all one’s happiness to all other sentient beings—so many eons of negative karma are purified. Limitless skies of karma are purified, depending on how much one is able to confess and purify, that would have resulted in one being reborn in the lower realms. In just one instant, many eons of negative karma and suffering are purified. This is how you can enjoy the sickness, the scolding, whatever problems you experience, by remembering that it is purification, and then thinking of the different benefits of the problems.
You can see how sentient beings suffer, with the karma and delusion created from desire, anger, etc, how one creates negative karma and then continuously creates the causes to suffer and to be reborn in the lower realms, where one has to experience the most unbearable suffering, for such an unbearable length of time, for eons. There is no freedom at all without purifying karma and delusion. Here, you should feel so much compassion. The instant compassion arises, the wish to help and free all beings from all sufferings and their causes, you receive inner peace, satisfaction, and happiness, because you only want to help, to liberate them from the lower realms, from samsara, lower nirvana, and bring them to enlightenment.
I am explaining this to you to help you, so you have different ways to think, to practice, and to use your sicknesses, or whatever difficulties you have in your life. You can purify all past negative karma, collect extensive merits, and develop inner happiness and satisfaction, real happiness, by renouncing samsara, generating compassion, loving kindness, and bodhicitta for others, and knowing how to develop one’s mind in the path, so that you can use all the difficulties on the path to enlightenment. You transform the difficulties into the path, using your problems to achieve enlightenment, using your sickness to liberate numberless sentient beings from the oceans of samsaric sufferings and bring them to full enlightenment. This is just amazing; it is so beneficial how you can use your problems.
Thank you very much. Please enjoy yourself, and as much as possible live your life with a bodhicitta motivation.
I was very happy to hear after I left New York that you came to the house and offered water bowls and so forth. That is excellent. Whatever you experience, physical or mental, instead of thinking this is a problem, you use the situation.
Make prayers to the Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha, and generate virtuous thoughts. Any action that is performed with bodhicitta brings you to enlightenment, to all the realizations. This is the mind to generate for all your practices, prostrations, recitations, meditation, and prayers to Tara, Medicine Buddha, etc. Whatever activity you do, if you generate this mind of bodhicitta, then it is a great, great thing. Whatever you do creates the cause for your enlightenment. This is a great achievement for all sentient beings, and along the way you achieve all happiness, also your family members.
So, as you already do, please perform all your actions with the good heart, thinking of the benefit of others, bodhicitta, as much as possible, of the benefit of all sentient beings in the city, country, and world. Then, with happiness in your heart, think of the happiness of all beings, not your own happiness, and practice Dharma with the motivation of bodhicitta, doing all your actions, all your works, whatever you are doing, social service, etc. thinking of others’ happiness. This will also bring you happiness; you will have happiness, satisfaction, fulfillment, and enjoyment in your heart. If you are happy, your mind is happy, then it brings happiness to many people. People feel happy because of your happiness.
With much love and prayers
PS. Please also recite OM MANI PADME HUM. This is a most important practice, especially for developing compassion, loving kindness, and bodhicitta, to achieve enlightenment for all sentient beings, so that you can liberate all sentient beings from the oceans of samsara’s suffering and bring them to enlightenment. That is the purpose of our life, the reason for practicing Dharma. It is only for that. Whatever practice we do—chanting mantras or meditation—is only for that: to transform one’s mind in enlightenment, to benefit all beings, and through this all one’s wishes are fulfilled.