From the text, Having Realized and Revealed How Things—I, Action, Object and Phenomena—Are Dependent Arising, (tenjung in Tibetan), Lama Tsongkhapa not only praised the Buddha, but by revealing that, numberless sentient beings have not only been freed from samsara but have become enlightened, are being enlightened and will be enlightened in the future. It is said there, how much world suffering there is, the root is ignorance—unseeing—and for anyone, by seeing that, the world suffering gets stopped, gets ceased. Therefore, Buddha has taught dependent arising—tenjung. It has a very important meaning. Ten, meaning “depending on,” eliminates eternalism, existence from its own side. Even one atom does not exist from its own side, at all. Then, because of that, jung—“arising”—eliminates nihilism. Hence all phenomena exist in mere name, merely labeled by the valid mind because there’s a valid base existing, and even that exists in mere name.
Lama Tsongkhapa said in the lamrim that on the valid basis, exaggeration occurs. By exaggerating good or bad and specially, by exaggerated good or bad, attachment and anger arises. The way these concepts hold their objects, as proved by logicians, make them wrong concepts because their objects do not exist according to what they believe and hold on to. So it clearly shows that we live our life in suffering, because we live life with attachment and anger, with concepts that hold objects that do not exist at all. All these concepts hold objects that do not exist at all. This means all these concepts are totally wrong because they are built on the basis of ignorance, holding I, action, object, phenomena as existing from their own side, which is totally non-existent. This proves ignorance is a totally wrong concept.
We sentient beings do not like suffering and want happiness. Hence we should recognize and realize that believing this ignorance—the root of samsara—is a totally hallucinated mind, a wrong concept. Not only should we realize this, we need to try to achieve special insight, a meditation on emptiness unified with shamatha. This is achieved by depending first on the perfect higher training of meditation—shamatha—and for that we need pure morality, the higher training of pure morality.
Therefore, the Middle Way devoid of eternalism and nihilism, taught by Buddha and especially propagated by Nagajuna and after that Chandrakirti, is here clearly explained by Lama Tsongkhapa. He explains very deeply, like the oceans, with a very clear, deep and wide view, what the middle view is. The root text was written by Chandrakirti, the great pandit from Nalanda and its commentary was made by Lama Tsongkhapa, in Clarifying the Intention.
In spite of how many degrees we receive from the most famous universities in the world, if we haven’t studied these teachings, not elaborately, not even middling and not even the essence, then we are totally ignorant, like a pig. We become like that. We live our life, not only from birth but from beginningless rebirths, only in hallucination, acting with body, speech and mind out of this ignorance, in a total hallucination, thinking things exist from their own side. We have suffered from beginningless rebirths, experiencing oceans of each of the six realms’ suffering, by not being enlightened in this subject. With the wrong concept, then again endlessly we suffer in samsara. Of course we don’t want that, so then we must study these subjects as much as we can. It is the most important thing, more than money or any worldly pleasure in the life. Please study with all the hardships.
If you are like a pig, if you are too ignorant of the Middle Way, the Madhyamaka view, how can you benefit others, let alone become liberated from the oceans of samsaric suffering? No way. No matter how much hardship you bear, it’s worthwhile to study. The more and more you study, the quicker it is to realize emptiness, the quicker to be free from samsara and quicker to achieve enlightenment. It’s quicker to be able to generate very strong compassion, great compassion for the sentient beings and then bodhicitta. Those two are the two wings to go to enlightenment, to go to buddhahood—the total cessation of obscurations and completion of all the realizations—the peerless happiness. The swans with two wings can cross the ocean, so like that, with these two wings—right view, the middle view and bodhicitta—on the basis of these, you can cross the oceans of samsaric suffering and go to enlightenment.
Through developing the higher training of wisdom we can achieve the right-seeing path where we have wisdom directly perceiving emptiness and then by developing that, it removes the obscurations that that path needs to remove, and by developing that path further, we purify the obscurations, removed by the path of meditation. After that comes no more learning, whereby we have totally ceased the seeds of delusion and karma. That’s how we become totally free from the oceans of sufferings of samsara, forever.
For everyone who reads this, most welcome to complete the works for self and for others, achieved only when you accomplish this. I hope this book, the translation of which was done by His Holiness’ translator, Geshe Thubten Jinpa, will open the mind of wisdom to all the suffering of obscured sentient beings.