Rejoice in the Problems

Rejoice in the Problems

Date of Advice:
February 2017
Date Posted:
April 2018

Rinpoche gave this advice to a student who was experiencing many obstacles. His family had lost all its wealth and the student had many health problems, including depression, anxiety, strokes, high blood pressure and shoulder pain.

Lama Zopa Rinpoche, Omak Lake, Washington, USA, September 2016. Photo: Lobsang Sherab.

My most dear, most precious, most kind, wish-fulfilling one,

I checked and you need to wear some protection amulets: Liberating from Bondage protection, White Umbrella Deity protection and a ru. You need to wear these protections, but don’t get them wet, so take them off when you have a shower. At night, if there is a chance you will roll over and sleep on them, then take them off and keep them close by, for example, on your bedside table, and then put them on again in the morning.

The ru you should wear all the time. It is against black magic and by wearing it when other people are doing black magic on you it becomes powerless. Of course, black magic comes from our selfish mind and ignorance.

It is said by Kadampa Geshe Choje:

Put all the blame to one.

This means the self-cherishing thought, because from that all the actions become negative karma. That is where all the sufferings come from; also it comes from ignorance, so it totally comes from your mind. This is where the black magic came from.

Then toward sentient beings meditate on their kindness.

Instead worldly people think that black magic and so forth came from outside, came from others. In reality, all the past happiness, present and future happiness and enlightenment comes from others, whereas black magic and all the suffering comes from our own mind, the selfish mind and ignorance, the root of samsara. This means holding the I as real while it is not, while it exists in mere name. It’s totally empty from its own side.

Thank you very much.

We should rejoice in the sufferings, the problems, because when we have problems it causes us to lose arrogance and pride, and it helps us to generate compassion for others, who are suffering in samsara like us or even more than ourselves. Then that helps us to actualize bodhicitta and it helps us to achieve enlightenment, it helps us to free the sentient beings from the oceans of samsara and sufferings and to bring them to peerless happiness.

Having problems helps us to be mindful, to not take [anything] for granted, to be mindful of negative karma, from where suffering comes, and of good karma, from where happiness comes. So we can renounce the negative karma and create good karma. We become more mindful. It helps us to achieve more happiness and to renounce suffering and the mind is happy to practice Dharma, to collect merit, to do positive actions. We are very happy. It helps to actualize all the realizations of lamrim up to enlightenment, the three principal aspects of the path, the general and in particular the two stages of tantra.

Kadampa Geshe Kharag Gomchung said:

The present suffering causes past negative karmas to finish and there will be happiness in the future. Therefore, rejoice that we are experiencing these sufferings.

The great yogi Choje Götsangpa said:

By my experiencing these problems, may all sentient beings be free from sicknesses, spirit harm, negative karma and defilements, and may they achieve buddhahood, the total cessation of all the obscurations and completion of all the realizations.

Think this, just as the Tibetan people recite OM MANI PADME HUM all the time—walking, shopping, being in the shop to buy things—so all the time they are reciting OM MANI PADME HUM. Like this, you can recite this verse [by Choje Götsangpa] on and on, while you are walking, while you are inside your room or outside, or going to work.

Each time you do that, you collect the highest merit, by taking first the sickness of all sentient beings and then the spirit harm, thirdly the negative karma and finally the obscurations. Therefore four times you collect the highest merit and the greatest purification of negative karmas collected from beginningless rebirth, which causes you to achieve realizations on the path the quickest and causes you to achieve enlightenment the quickest. That is the best life, the most happy life, a meaningful life.

Thank you very much.

With much love and prayers ...