Teachings From the Vajrasattva Retreat

By Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche
Soquel, CA USA 1999 (Archive #1055)

This book is an edited transcript of Lama Zopa Rinpoche's teachings at a three-month Vajrasattva retreat held at Land of Medicine Buddha, from February 1 to April 30, 1999. The teachings cover many lam-rim topics, purification practices, mantras, pujas and more.

Chapter 46: April 24

WEEKEND TEACHING

Good evening, or good night! [It’s almost 9:00 p.m.] Tonight we’ll do the teachings in our dreams! A dream teaching in a dream retreat!

Emptiness

Somebody who has realized emptiness...this might sound as if I have realized emptiness, but I am not saying that. A few years ago, one of the times when Lama Ösel was at Kopan Monastery, he came into my room, lay on the bed, kind of rolling around, playing, and said, “If I tell people that I’m not enlightened, they will think I am, and that’s not correct, but if I tell them that I am enlightened, that wouldn’t be correct either.” I thought Lama Ösel’s thinking was very smart!

Anyway, an unenlightened sentient being who has realized emptiness still has the appearance of inherent existence but has no belief, no apprehension, that it is true. The understanding or recognition that the meditator has is that what is appearing to his or her view is false. The awareness is that this is a hallucination. Those who, like myself, haven’t trained their minds, have not realized how things are empty, haven’t developed the wisdom realizing emptiness, are unable to see sense objects—subject, I, action and object—as a dream or an illusion. Instead, such people totally believe sense objects to be real; they totally believe that everything they see is real. Not only do they live in the world of hallucination, in the world of their own hallucinated minds, but on top of that, they believe that world to be real. Not only do they have the hallucinated appearance but they also have complete belief that it is true. This becomes the basis upon which all emotional thoughts arise.

Those who haven’t actualized emptiness, have not developed their minds to see things as a dream, as an illusion, who do not meditate on or practice awareness of the illusion that they have, who do not recognize it as an illusion or meditate on the emptiness of the subject, I, action, object and all other sense objects, all of which appears to them as not merely labeled by the mind...here, when I use the words “not merely labeled by the mind” to introduce the object to be refuted instead of saying “inherently existent”, when I try to present it by saying “appearing not merely labeled by the mind”, I am trying to express the extremely subtle object to be refuted according to the highest division of the fourth of the four schools of Buddhist philosophy, the Prasangika Madhyamaka.

I don’t remember all the Sanskrit names, but in Tibetan, the first of the four schools is je dra ma ba [Vaibhashika]; the second, do de pa [Sautrantika]; the third, sem tsam, the mind only school [Cittamatra]; and the fourth, Madhyamaka [u ma], which has two divisions, Svatantrika [rang gyü] and Prasangika [thäl gyur].

Therefore, I say “that which appears not merely labeled by the mind” to express that extremely subtle object to be refuted according to the Prasangika school’s view. By realizing that extremely subtle one is empty, by realizing, recognizing, that it is a hallucination, that it is false, that it doesn’t exist, that it is totally empty, only then, only when that happens, do you realize emptiness, the unmistaken emptiness that Guru Shakyamuni Buddha realized, the wisdom that liberated him from the oceans of samsaric sufferings and their cause, delusion and karma, and enabled him to liberate numberless other beings; the wisdom that Nagarjuna, Lama Tsongkhapa, Milarepa and many others realized as well. If you read Milarepa’s life story you will find a section that talks about the two truths, and you can understand from that. There’s a short paragraph that talks about the two truths. Actually, I’m not sure which of the two Milarepa texts it is, his hundred thousand songs or his life story; but whichever it is, his presentation is exactly the same as Lama Tsongkhapa’s.

After you go through the object to be refuted, the object of ignorance, the root of samsara, according to the view of each of the four schools of Buddhist philosophy, if you omit the extremely subtle one explained by the second of the Madhyamaka schools, the Prasangika, then even if you have realized emptiness according to the point of view of the previous schools, you still can’t cut the root of samsara. It can help to eventually cut the root of samsara, but it doesn’t actually directly cut the root of samsara. That very particular root of samsara, that very particular ignorance, can be cut only by realizing the extremely subtle Prasangika view, the extremely subtle object to be refuted, the hallucination that appears as not merely labeled by mind—not just “not labeled by the mind” but “not merely labeled by the mind.” That one.

The way things appear to exist to us is as slightly more than what is merely labeled by mind. Therefore, as I was going to say before, twenty-four hours a day, those of us who haven’t realized emptiness allow our hallucinating mind to believe that all these appearances, which appear as not merely labeled by the mind, are real, not false; are the truth. The appearances are false but we believe them to be true. Twenty-four hours a day, we let our mind make everything concrete, inherently existent; we constantly let our mind turn all these appearances, all these phenomena, into something concrete, inherently existent. Like this, constantly, twenty-four hours a day, we are creating ignorance, the root of samsara. In this way, twenty-four hours a day, we are making our mind become the root of samsara, ignorance, by letting it hold, apprehend, that the way things appear, as not merely labeled by mind, is true. Constantly we are making our mind the root of samsara, developing that particular ignorance that is the root of all the other delusions, disturbing obscuring thoughts, and karma, and all the sufferings of samsara.

Is the subject, I, action, object—all phenomena—appearing to us as not merely labeled by the mind in the mind or outside?

Student: Together.

Rinpoche: Made from LMB! Together; made from LMB!

Student: Made from space.

Rinpoche: Things appearing as not merely labeled by mind, does that exist outside or inside? Does it exist outside the mind or in the mind?

Answer: Not separate from the mind.

Rinpoche: Not separate from mind. I see. So it’s one with the mind? It’s one with the mind? So it’s mind? It’s mind? So if it is mind, then it has to be either the fifty-one mental factors or the consciousness. The appearance to the mind has to be one of those—consciousness or the fifty-one mental factors—what does Neil think?

[Ven. Neil doesn’t answer.]

Rinpoche: Mahakala? [Referring to Ven. Michel.] It’s outside or in the mind? I, action, object, things appearing not merely labeled by mind— anyway, the inherently existent appearance—is it in the mind or outside the mind?

Ven. Michel: In the mind.

Rinpoche: In the mind. Bertrand?

Ven. Bertrand: It looks to be in the mind, even if it’s a hallucination.

Rinpoche: It looks to be in the mind?

Ven. Bertrand: Dependent on the mind...

Rinpoche: Dependant on the mind. Marcel?

Ven. Marcel: Created by mind.

Rinpoche: But is it outside or inside?

Ven. Marcel: Inside...

Ven. Michel: It appears to be outside...

Rinpoche: So...is hell outside or in the mind?

Student: It appears to be outside but it’s inseparable from the mind.

Rinpoche: It is inseparable from the mind but it is not in the mind? It is inseparable but it is not in the mind. It is neither outside nor inside? Is hell neither outside nor inside?

Ven. Michel: [Inaudible.]

Rinpoche: So it doesn’t exist? So hell doesn’t exist?

Ven. Michel: It is only a point of view that you see things separate, inside and outside. There is always duality, seeing outside and inside. When we don’t see, when we see a subject and object we see inside and outside, in the way there is a dualistic view, so we bring inside and outside, it doesn’t exist on its own side, but we...

Rinpoche: So nothing exists inside or outside?

Ven. Michel: In its own way, in the way that it appears as being inside and outside, not. If we, I mean, the way we designate, we could say it’s a convention, conventionally could be inside and outside, just merely to designate...

Rinpoche: So conventionally, is it outside or inside?

Ven. Michel: [Inaudible.]

Rinpoche: So does hell exist outside the mind or inside the mind?

Ven. Michel: Inside the mind.

Rinpoche: Hell is in the mind?

Ven. Michel: Yes, either outside, if we are not in hell...

Rinpoche: I think that feels better! When you are not a hell being it is outside, but when you are born in hell, it is in the mind! That makes it feel much better! So, when you have diarrhea, is that in your mind or outside!

Nick: On your legs.

Rinpoche: Your having diarrhea, is that in the mind or outside?

Ven. Michel: Both...

Rinpoche: Both?

Ven. Michel: [Inaudible.]

Rinpoche: I think he could be a good political leader! Maybe he should become president of France! So, when you experience hell, that is in the mind, but when you have diarrhea, that can be also outside! Because you can see that very clearly, so it has to be a little bit outside more than just in the mind—because we can’t see hell very clearly at the moment but we can see the diarrhea much more clearly, we have more feeling of the diarrhea. I’m joking! When you have pain in your toes, is that in the mind? Is that in the mind or outside? When you have pain in the toes?

Answer: In the mind.

Rinpoche: So your toes are in the mind, your leg is in the mind?

Answer: You feel...

Rinpoche: No, your leg is in your mind?

Answer: You feel through the mind...

Rinpoche: Your leg exists in your mind?

Ven. Michel: It exists also in some way...

Rinpoche: Some part outside!

Ven. Michel: [Inaudible.]

Rinpoche: What?

Ven. Michel: The difference between Madhyamaka Prasangika and Cittamatra—the mind only view would be only in the mind.

Rinpoche: Only in the mind?

Ven. Michel: The Prasangika view would be...

Rinpoche: ...half and half! So why in the Prasangika’s view...did you say some part of the leg is in the mind?

Ven. Michel: The pain...

Rinpoche: Some part of the leg is in the mind? Half the leg is in the mind? That sounds like birth, a baby coming from the mother’s womb— half inside, half outside!

Ven. Michel: The solid aspect is outside; the feeling is in the mind.

Rinpoche: [Just laughs!]

Ven. Kunsang: [Not clear.]...pain is the thought...from the side of the toes there’s no pain. It is only flesh and bone; there is no pain from the side of the toes. The pain is coming from the mind. From the side of the toes it’s only flesh and bone, so there is no pain from the side of the toes. The toes don’t say, “I have pain, I have pain.”

Brian Flynn: On the conventional level it exists half and half. There’s an object on the outside and then there’s a mental projection. But ultimately it all comes from the mind. Karma is created in the past...our whole universe...

Rinpoche: So you mean there is a leg there, a leg exists there, and there’s an additional leg projected from the mind? There are two legs; a leg on a leg! What did you say...from the side of the leg there is no pain?

Ven. Kunsang: Yes.

Rinpoche: Why from the side of the leg is there no pain?

Ven. Kunsang: Because it is only flesh and bone, and I don’t think flesh and bone have pain.

Rinpoche: Flesh and bone; when you have pain in your toes, in your leg, at that time is your leg not in the nature of pain? At that time, is your leg not in the nature of suffering, pain?

Ven. Kunsang: From the side of the leg there is no pain. From my mind, I would label pain; the pain is here. Sometimes they say that when carpenters cut their finger they don’t feel pain until they realize that they have cut it.

Rinpoche: ...if they don’t see that their finger is cut...?

Ven. Kunsang: ...they don’t feel pain. But when they see it, then they realize, then the pain comes. So pain comes from the mind.

Rinpoche: Does a higher bodhisattva whose limb has been cut have pain?

Ven. Kunsang: They say there is no pain.

Rinpoche: But he can see his limb has been cut. You said that if you see it’s cut, you have pain. But here is somebody who sees it is cut but doesn’t experience pain.

Ven. Kunsang: Because at that point you are liberated from grasping at self. At that time, those arya bodhisattvas have direct perception of emptiness; they are free from grasping at the self.

Rinpoche: They are free from what?

Ven. Kunsang: They are free from grasping at the self. [Inaudible.] Therefore there is no pain—because there is no grasping at the self.

Rinpoche: Grasping at what?

Ven. Kunsang: Self-existing inherently...

Ven. Chantal: Self.

Rinpoche: There is no grasping at what?

Ven. Chantal: Self.

Ven. Kunsang: Towards the finger, “This is my arm,” or the self, existing by itself.

Rinpoche: It is mentioned in the Lam-rim Chen-mo—I don’t remember which page, but last year, when we were taking teachings from Geshe Sopa Rinpoche on the great insight, it mentioned—that even arya beings have grasping at inherently existent appearances, but it didn’t explain what kind. I asked Geshe Sopa Rinpoche if it was the very subtle one. I thought it impossible that having had direct perception, great insight, that they would have the normal thought grasping at inherently existent appearances. Therefore, perhaps it was the extremely subtle one. It was not clarified there, simply mentioned. Different authors may explain the teachings differently; but that’s what the Lam-rim Chen-mo mentioned.

Anyway, the conclusion is that you may have felt better when you talked about hell, but afterwards, when it came to diarrhea, it was not so pleasant and became more concrete! I’m joking.

A very good meditation for practicing mindfulness in daily life is to think how the subject, your own I, and objects, for example, other people, appear to you as not merely labeled by mind. Everything appears to you as not merely labeled by mind. The bright lights in this gompa, all the pictures, appear as something not merely labeled by mind. The pillars, the roof beams, everything appears to be not merely labeled by mind, appears like that, as something real, there. However, all these six sense objects that appear to be real, that appear as something real, from there, something real from there, outside, as if a real object is there, outside —all these are not outside; are not there, are not outside but are just concepts. Not there; just concepts.

Therefore, it could be said that they’re in the mind. Another way of saying it is that they’re just in the mind. If you don’t close your eyes, if you look at what appears to your sense of eye—or to your sense of ear, sense of nose, sense of tongue, all sense objects—it all appears as something real, outside. But actually, it is not there. It’s mere concept; it’s just in the mind.

For example, while we are sitting here, we can meditate that all these things that appear around us are not really there—they are just in the mind. That blue light there, for instance, that real blue light that is not merely labeled by the mind is merely my concept, it’s just in my mind. It is not there. So, subject, object, everything that appears as not merely labeled by mind is just my concept, merely in the mind.

It is a very good meditation, a very powerful meditation, to just keep your mind in that state, to practice mindfulness like that. You see it like this and meditate, practice mindfulness, in that way. Or, while you are walking, meditate that the inherently existent road, the real road that is not merely labeled by your mind, or the real sky that is not merely labeled by your mind, or the real redwoods, those very tall trees, the whole thing, cars, houses, whatever appears to you as not merely labeled by your mind—all these things are just mere concept. This means, another way of expressing it is, that they are all simply in your mind— not there. While you are walking, if you can walk with this continual awareness, it is very good, very powerful.

This is a very good meditation, but I am asking whether the conventional truth is also in the mind or not. Is the friend outside or in the mind?

Student: In the mind.

Rinpoche: In the mind. I see. And the enemy?

Ven. Michel: The base is outside. The way we designate it is inside.

Rinpoche: So the base is not designated by the mind? The base is inherently existent but the label is not inherently existent.

Ven. Michel: There is a base, but we cannot...I mean, there is not really a name for the base.

Rinpoche: There is no name for the base?

Ven. Michel: I mean, friend, enemy or stranger, there is a base but not really in the way we think, something on its own...

Rinpoche: There is a base from its own side?

Ven. Michel: No. There is a base, but not on its own side. After we label that enemy, friend or stranger, we put the label on, like, it would be on its own side, but it is not, because we could have, we have choice.

Rinpoche: Oh, I see. So you are saying it is labeled from its own side? What?

Ven. Michel: No, it’s not, because we have a choice to label it differently. That’s because it’s not, it proves why it’s not on its own side.

Rinpoche: Oh! That’s great! This time he answered like Nagarjuna! That’s right. So friend, enemy is in the mind? Friend, enemy is in the mind?

Ven. Michel: Yes.

Brian: Isn’t it both? As soon as I designate it in my mind, it appears outside: “I’m going to visit with my friend, he’s over there.”

Rinpoche: So if it appears outside, it is outside?

Brian: It appears outside, but it is inseparable from the mind. But in the mind nothing exists by itself, because the mind...

Rinpoche: So that means if anything appears outside, it exists outside? Does it mean that?

Brian: It’s not, it’s not completely inside the mind, either, is it?

Rinpoche: What you are saying means if things appear outside to your mind, then they exist outside.

Brian: Not truly, it doesn’t truly exist outside the mind, it only appears that way. It appears to exist outside the mind.

Rinpoche: I see. It appears to exist outside the mind, but it doesn’t exist outside the mind?

Brian: But it’s inseparable from mind.

Rinpoche: So it’s mind?

Brian: It’s not entirely...

Rinpoche: So it’s mind?

Brian: It’s not entirely inside the mind.

Rinpoche: It’s inseparable from my mind?

Brian: The mind doesn’t truly exist either; the mind is also empty.

Rinpoche: What do you understand by inseparable?

Brian: We can’t take, you can’t take Lama Zopa away from the mind. There is no Lama Zopa outside the mind.

Rinpoche: Are your clothes and yourself separable or inseparable?

Brian: My clothes? I can take my clothes off, and then I will be in a naked state.

Rinpoche: So now, are you and your clothes separable or inseparable?

Brian: Me and my clothes are inseparable, but still I can take them off.

Rinpoche: I see! Your clothes and you are not separate now, as long as your clothes and you are not separated.

Brian: Just like you cannot take me outside of the universe. We are inseparable. There is no Brian that exists outside the planet earth.

Rinpoche: What is the opposite of separation, what is the opposite of separate?

Brian: Opposite of separate? Unification.

Rinpoche: So you and your clothes are oneness?

Brian: Yes.

Rinpoche: You and your clothes are oneness? You and your clothes are unified?

Brian: We are inseparable, inseparability.

Rinpoche: Are you and the kaka in your stomach inseparable?

Brian: Yes. Me and my kaka, we’re like this [Brian clasps hands].

Rinpoche: Just one more question, since you have put in so much effort. Are you and the kaka in your stomach unified?

Brian: Me and my kaka, my kaka and I...

Rinpoche: If that’s the case, you become kaka, because you are unified with kaka. You become kaka.

Anyway, what I was saying before, in the case of enemy or friend, these labels are based on a perception of inherent existence, on the concept, or belief, of a real enemy or a real friend. Therefore, you can also think that it’s not there, it’s in the mind, you can meditate, practice awareness, that it is not outside. This is very useful.

Now, going back to what I was saying before, it is very effective, if you can practice this awareness when you are in danger of engaging in negative karma, creating the cause of samsara, particularly the cause of the lower realms.

The way that attachment arises, first there is the foundation of that very huge hallucination, the appearance of inherent existence. By seeing the base to be labeled “body”—the base that also came from your own mind—your mind makes up the label “body.” The label “body” is merely imputed by your mind. You create the concept of “body” and, believing in that, due to negative imprints left on your mind, your mental continuum, by past ignorance, the concept of inherent existence, your mind projects the hallucination that there is a body on that base.

Whether you project an ugly body or a beautiful body, it’s the same thing. It is merely imputed by your mind. Due to your own concepts, your own reasons—“this is good”, “this is bad”, “this is beautiful”, “this is ugly”—your mind projects that there’s a real ugly body or a real beautiful body on that base. Perhaps what you regard as beautiful in the West, a slim body, is regarded as ugly in the East. Or in some countries, where goiters are rare, someone with a goiter is regarded as ugly, whereas in places where many people have goiters, someone who doesn’t have one is thought to be ugly. Or in the West, someone with big muscles is considered to be beautiful, whereas in the East, in Tibet, that person would be regarded as ugly. Therefore, due to your individual interpretation of what is beautiful and ugly or your society’s beliefs that you have grown up with, you project an ugly or beautiful body there.

However, there’s the projection of inherent existence. After your mind merely imputes, makes up the label, there’s the hallucination that there’s something real there on the base. That’s the biggest hallucination.

That is the foundation. Then, on top of that false appearance comes the belief that the beautiful body projected there is true. Ignorance apprehends that it is true, and due to that, attachment arises, grasping at, clinging to, that object. The mind arises believing that that object is worth clinging to and the nature that mind of attachment is such that you find it very painful and difficult to separate from that object that is so worthy of clinging to.

Therefore you can say that all of this—the object of ignorance, the object of attachment—is in the mind. None of what is projected is there.

It is all based on hallucination. What you’re clinging to is a hallucination on top of a hallucination. Different hallucinating thoughts arise in relation to this object.

It is similar with anger in that it, too, arises on the basis of this same foundation of the biggest hallucination, the appearance of inherent existence.

An inherently existent object is projected on the base and then your mind interprets its function, what it does to you. If you interpret the actions of another person’s body, speech or mind as being harmful to you, you get angry. Anger, the thought wishing to give harm, arises. You dislike that object and the thought of harming it arises. Your whole manner changes. Nothing pleasant manifests in your behavior. Your speech and body language are the opposite of what would make the other person happy; the way you think about the other person, the way you look at him, the way you speak—everything is unpleasant. Even if normally you’re quite a nice person, anger changes all that. Even if you’re adorned with beautiful ornaments and attractively made up, even if you have a lovely body, when you’re angry, everything about you becomes unpleasant. Your anger destroys it all. Your beautiful form becomes kind of terrifying.

The conclusion, of course, is that it is all nonsense. If you analyze the way your mind has created all this, you can see for yourself it’s nonsense.

The object to which you are attached is just your own mental projection.

The person at whom you’re angry is your own mental projection. It is all based on this big hallucination, the inherently existent object that doesn’t exist at all, that is totally empty. Through this analysis, you can see that there is no value in these projections, that the whole thing is totally nonsensical.

If you compare the object that you grasp at as beautiful to another that is more beautiful, the first appears ugly, and when you compare the second beautiful object to one that is even more beautiful, the second then appears ugly. What Venerable Michel said is correct—this proves that they don’t exist from their own side.

I have brought up this topic of mental fabrications, one on top of the other, so that you can see how we make our samsara endless, how we continually bind ourselves to samsara, and to show how actualizing the lam-rim path, realizing the lam-rim meditations, especially—of the three principal paths—the meditation on emptiness is extremely important as the means of liberating yourself from the prison of samsara.

So, going back to what I was talking about at the beginning, someone who has realized emptiness, whose mind is well trained in that, sees things as an illusion, like a dream. Sometimes, people like us are able to recognize a dream as a dream; occasionally, we can recognize a dream as a dream. Some people can probably do it any time, every night—whenever they dream they can recognize their dream as a dream. This probably has something to do with practice. They might have trained their mind in tantric practice in past lives, for example.

When you recognize a dream as a dream, whatever happens in that dream doesn’t affect your mind. Whether it’s separation from a friend, a relationship problem, if you have the awareness that this is just a dream, whatever happens in it doesn’t affect you. What other people do to you—praise, criticize—doesn’t affect your mind, doesn’t make your mind go up and down. You know it’s just a dream. Relationship problems, business difficulties, gain or loss, lost friends or lost wealth, failed business, family members died—whatever happens in the dream doesn’t affect your mind because you are aware, you understand, that this is just a dream; all that is happening is not true.

A person who has a deep understanding that there is no I has a similar experience while awake, when not sleeping, not dreaming. Whatever is happening around that person who has a very deep understanding that there’s no I—and when I use this term “no I,” I am not using it in the nihilistic sense—even though there may be the appearance of inherent existence—because the person is still a sentient being and the only sentient beings who don’t have this appearance are high arya beings in equipoise meditation—because of that very deep understanding that there is no I, it all appears as if it were a dream. Even though the person is not sleeping.

As far as these things affecting the person’s mind—not just the subject, I, but also sense objects, gain, loss, relationship problems, meeting, separation, whatever is going on—there’s a huge difference in the way the person reacts compared to others who don’t have that deep understanding.

Even though there’s the appearance of all these things really happening, the person has one hundred percent understanding that no such things exist, including the I. So, even though it’s daytime, in the view of that person it all looks like a dream. These things are happening —gain, loss, whatever—but because of the person’s strong intensive understanding that there’s no I, no objects, none of these actions—

there’s no affect to the mind and the person recognizes it all as a dream.

His Holiness Dalai Lama was once interviewed on television by Larry King. Larry asked His Holiness, “Do you have anger, attachment?” His Holiness replied that although on the surface of his mind there might be some activity, like waves on the ocean, deep down in his mind, nothing happens. I guess Larry was referring to issues about Tibet and so forth, so I think His Holiness meant thoughts come and go like waves, but inside, there’s no disturbance. I think that kind of experience is based on seeing that everything is like an illusion, like a dream—seeing everything is empty.

I’m not saying that this is His Holiness’s only realization but that what His Holiness described is based on his realization of emptiness. It doesn’t mean there’s no compassion for other beings. It doesn’t mean that. It’s just that when people criticize or are against His Holiness, at such times, nothing happens; it doesn’t disturb his mind.

I think the life of the person who has that realization must become very interesting. When other people talk very excitedly about this and that, because of the person’s very intensive understanding of emptiness, the understanding that things are empty, he or she gets the feeling that they are talking about something that doesn’t exist, something that is not real.

For us, however, the extra thing is that, on top of the hallucinated appearance, we believe that everything is real, everything is true; we make everything solid. That then becomes the main issue, the basic, fundamental problem; the fundamental problem of our life. Not only does our mind project the hallucination, but we also believe it to be real. In this way, we make our mind weak and the object becomes a more powerful influence to our mind, the object overpowers our mind. The other way, the mind becomes more powerful, but our way, believing our projection to be real, whatever happens in life—praise, criticism, separation, meeting, relationship problems, gain, loss—becomes overwhelming, overpowers our mind, overpowers our life. Our mind is too sensitive.

The other way, our mind overwhelms the object and nothing can bother our mind.

Anyway, this is just talking blah, blah, blah.... Actually, I meant to continue from where I left off the other day, I meant to continue that subject. That was the idea, but because I mentioned doing the teachings in our dreams, the rest just happened! So anyway, whatever it is, it’s finished!

I’ll stop there.

Dedication

“Due to all the merits of the three times collected by me, buddhas, bodhisattvas and all other sentient beings, may bodhicitta—cherishing others, letting go of oneself, letting go of the I—which is the source of all the happiness and success of me and all other sentient beings, be generated within my own mind and in the minds of all sentient beings without even a second’s delay. May that which has already been generated increase.

“Due to all the merits of the three times collected by me, buddhas, bodhisattvas and all other sentient beings, may all the father-mother sentient beings have happiness, may the three lower realms be empty forever, may all bodhisattvas’ prayers succeed immediately and may I be able to cause all this to happen by myself alone.

“Due to all the merits of the three times collected by me, buddhas, bodhisattvas and all other sentient beings, may I be able to offer infinite benefit like the sky to all sentient beings like Lama Tsongkhapa did by having within me the same qualities that Lama Tsongkhapa had, from now on, in all my future lifetimes.

“Due to all the merits of the three times collected by me, buddhas, bodhisattvas and all other sentient beings, which are totally non-existent from their own side, may the I, which is also totally non-existent from its own side, achieve Guru Shakyamuni Buddha’s enlightenment, which is also totally non-existent from its own side, and lead all sentient beings, who are totally non-existent from their own side, to that enlightenment, which is totally non-existent from its own side, by myself alone, who is also totally non-existent from its own side.”

Finally, dedicate to actualize Lama Tsongkhapa’s complete teaching within your own mind and for it to spread in the minds of all the sentient beings and to flourish forever.

Good night. Next session? [It’s after 11:00 p.m.!]

Next Chapter:

Chapter 47: April 25 »