Teachings from Guadalajara: Days 1 - 4 (Audio and Unedited Transcript)

By Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche
Guadalajara, Mexico, 2008 (Archive #1700)

Days 1-4 of an eight-day series of lam-rim teachings by Lama Zopa Rinpoche in Guadalajara, Mexico, in April, 2008.  You can listen to days 5-8 here.

You can also read an edited version of this series here, and listen online to the public talk that Rinpoche gave prior to this series.

Day 1: The Cause of Suffering Part 2

So it’s, basically it’s not understanding the I, the self, from that, due to ignorance. Then also cause the oceans of hell suffering, like that, yeah, that. The eight major hot hells, Being Alive Again and Again, then the Black Line, then the Yamas like carpenter, put black, your body is so, like ridge of mountain, then put the black line, cut, all this. Then due to your delusions, your impure mind, wrong concept and the karma motivate that, create that. So that appearance. Then the Crushed and Gathered, sorry, Gathered and Crushed. Then, the human beings or animals or insects that you killed in the past, then the mountains appear in the form of those animals or people, whoever you killed, then their head, then like huge rocky mountains like that, then crushed yourself there, due to karma and delusion, you are gathered into this, between two mountains and crushed. So billions and billions and billions, I mean, zillions and zillions, zillions, zillions, years. Then making like waterfall then all the blood come out. Then the Crying and Great Crying, then the, which has no doors or windows, you just, suddenly you have this appearance oneness with fire and no windows, no doors, so for an unbelievable length of time, many billions, zillions, so many ?eons, until the karma finishes. Then when you finish that then there’s another one again, so again billions, zillions, Great Crying, then the Hot and Extremely Hot. Then the last one is Inexhaustible, the hot hell, so that one is the heaviest suffering in samsara, that one, the longest time, one intermediate eon. So that one doesn’t have a figure, form, as a living being, so the, like a fire, sort of like firewood, like a huge wood, a huge big piece of log of wood, like that, oneness with fire, so like that, only the here only you can discriminate the sentient being, whether there’s a sentient being or not is by the sound, the screaming sound of the suffering, only by that. So anyway, body oneness with fire. Anyway, so it’s the most unbearable.

So then there’s eight major cold, Blister, Having Blister, then Achoo, the third level, the Kyiphu, then Tightened the Teeth, then the Break, Broke like lotus, like lotus petals broke the body, the body which is oneness with ice, so these are cold sufferings, they’re all cold. So heavier, heavier, double, longer and more sufferings as it goes down. Then Great Breaking, Great Cracks, Cracked like an Utpali, you say, so what I’m saying, no, Lotus Petals and Great Crack like Lotus Petals, then Like Utpali Flower, the Great Crack, blue. So like this, eight.

Then the six neighborhood sufferings, six neighborhood hell sufferings. Then ordinary, six neighborhood sufferings, so that’s just very rough that. So one of those is Chuwa Rame, and that is the same as the lava, there’s kind of like oceans of lava. Then, so suddenly you see you’re born there inside. So we see lava, where there’s a volcano, like Hawaii or many places where there’s a volcano you see lava coming out, wherever it touch the rocks it melted, so because so hot, hotter than the human beings’ fire. So, unbelievable hot. So I have seen lava, I went to Hawaii, then there was one small meditation center exist for the last, for some years, I think for maybe ten years, I’m not sure anyway, so that now disappeared. It dissolved. So anyway, [laughter] so I think it dissolved in the sky. So anyway, called Shantideva, name of that, Shantideva, I think. So now Shantideva is in New York, [laughter], so last year or year before started.

So I went to see the lava, so unbelievable hot. Even there’s the lava there, so hot. So anyway, so that’s one, so like oceans of lava, suddenly you have this karmic appearance, you are inside of that. Then karmically those sentient beings, insects inside, very long, extremely long like sharp, like the needle or ?tool, kind of very, very long. So you can see some birds, you can see at the beach or something, when they show in the TV all these museums or, I mean, this is not museum but zoos or, some birds has very long beak, very fine. Anyway I’m just trying to remind you. So anyway, there are those sentient beings due to your karma. So then they put through your body. So anyway, so then because lava so I thought to tell that, to give that idea. So there are six, four neighborhood hell sufferings, then ordinary hell suffering, which is also in the human realm, also in the human world.

So anyway, so all those most unbearable, so the cold hell, the body being caught in the mountains of ice or like nailed, however, so all the human beings’ even whole ice or the whole energy of the cold, it’s very pleasant compared to the hell beings’ cold, cold hell. So the, one tiny fire spark from the hell, how hot it is, compared to all the human being’s world fire put together, all that is like snowfall, that mentioned in the teachings, like snowfall, cool, compared to the one tiny fire spark from the hell, how hot it is. It’s, so normally mentioned that sixty or seventy times, end of the world fire is sixty or seventy times hotter than the present all the human beings’ fire. And now then, that end of the world fire is seven times hotter than one tiny fire spark from the hell.

So, when the negative karma, when it’s experienced out, when it’s actualized, the rebirth the hell realm happened, then that time all the obstacles gathered, not only there’s no opportunity to practice Dharma, to have happiness, to create the cause of happiness, no opportunity at all and all the obstacles gathered, all the obstacles to happiness gathered. So the fire, just to give some idea of how it’s unbearable, so one tiny spark like that, then your body is like ridge of mountains and then the skin is unbelievable thin, so like when we have infection, anything touches that, it’s painful, so like that, unbelievable. So then the, even the body’s cut in pieces or even the blood come out, even they have consciousness, even the pieces of the body have consciousness, so they suffer, unbelievable. So then unbelievable length of time, suffering is unbelievable then the body is like that. Everything’s unbelievable length of time. Even the very first one is much more than two billion, just to give you an idea, much more than two billion human years, the very first hot hell, length of life. I think two billion years, maybe two billion or [pause]…. So like this, the very first hell being’s length of life, one hundred million years, like that you have ten, ten times like that, so that’s called a tre bum, one hundred million years of human years, like that, ten is called a tre bum. Then ten tre bum is a great tre bum, one great tre bum. Ten great tre bum is a trag trig. So then, so a trag trig, I think this is rough, to give you just a rough idea, not exact. Two trag trig, I don’t remember very clearly, just roughly, two trag trig then two great tre bum and six tre bum, something like that, so that’s the length of life the very first hot hell.

So all these from where it came, all these sufferings, most unbearable, so it came from one’s own mind, this wrong concept, this ignorance, ignorant in the meaning of selflessness of the person, ignorant in the meaning of selflessness of the aggregates. So it came from the ignorance. So who created all this most unbearable suffering? The hell realms, all that. By this ignorance, by this wrong concept, this is the root, then the other delusions, anger and the other delusions, but it’s the root. So that means by, now here you understand, now here you should have some idea. One thing is by meditating those different realm sufferings, caused by ignorance, by, those different realms those most unbearable sufferings that we experienced in the past numberless times, that you already experienced numberless times and there’s so much negative karma collected from the past, so much, unbelievable, there’s so much that you haven’t finished experiencing. There’s so much there to be left, to be experienced in the future, those hell realm sufferings, okay. So now here, the important thing is here, by studying those sufferings, how it is unbearable, then you look for the cause. What causes this? From where it comes? So it comes from your mind, comes from your mind. Not your positive mind, not caused by your compassion. Those sufferings do not come from your compassion, your loving kindness, your wisdom, not from your positive mind, patience, not at all. Came from your, the impure mind, wrong concept, ignorance, anger, attachment, and then especially ignorance, root, not understanding the I, the self. So basically that is the root, that’s the fundamental answer. What creates all this suffering? What makes to experience? What makes to be in these realms? What makes to experience these, something most unbearable? Just these wrong, these wrong concepts. Just basically from these wrong concepts, ignorance, not knowing the self, not knowing the I, the self, what it is. So ignorant in that.

So, then the, so now get to the point, purpose of learning those, all those, being aware, understanding all these difficulties and sufferings that you experienced numberless times from beginningless rebirth, numberless times go through, and there’s still so much negative karma done in the past, collected in the past, collected in the present, which we will have to experience. So what causes all that to experience is by this ignorance. So now, here, you get the idea, you cannot wait even a second without eradicating this ignorance. Without eradicating this, without eliminating this, can’t wait even a second, the root of all the suffering, the very root, so can’t wait even a second. So therefore, then becomes, now here, so now I’m going to say this way. When a doctor tells you you have cancer, then how your mind reacts. Do you feel so happy? So happy, excited, as I mentioned yesterday, hands like this. [laughter] With all the hands like this, very intensive face, like this. You throw your arms then you run. [laughter] So anyway, so whether you do that when doctor tells you, you go to check to the hospital and the doctor tells you you have got cancer, cancer or some other life-threatening disease. So, going to be so happy, unbelievably happy like this or or your mind filled with fear, unbelievable fear. Your mind become like the weather completely covered by black fog, can’t see the stars, no sun, no moon, anyway, very dark, so mentally become like that. So unbelievable sad, fear and unbelievable, so sad, thinking that, Oh, I have to die. So relating to, fear because relating to death, the sickness connected, relating to the death.

So anyway, so of course, somebody who has a very good heart, somebody who live the life with the great heart, I mean the good heart, you live your life for others, for other sentient beings and then whenever a problem comes, whenever you encounter problems, you experience, you are thinking that you have taken all the sentient beings’ problems, all the sentient beings’ cancer, problems, not only the sicknesses but the cause of, I mean the, take the sufferings including the cause of suffering, karma and delusion, everything on yourself and let them to be free, free from suffering, the dharmakaya, free from suffering. So somebody who live the life with that kind of attitude. So then, when the doctor tells you, Oh, you have cancer, whatever it is, some life-threatening, heavy disease then because you realize how sentient beings are so precious, how they are so precious, how they are so, most kind, you realize that they are most kind being alive, most kind than even Buddha, Dharma, Sangha, most kind, kinder than even Buddha, Dharma, Sangha, and then most precious beings. So then, so you are so happy, unbelievable happy to experience suffering, experience the cancer, whatever it is, for others. So for you it’s the best thing, best thing in your life, best success, highest success. So that, take their suffering on you, give all the happiness to them. So, of course that’s different. But generally, mostly our mind is full of fear, filled with fear and so much sadness, unbelievable sadness.

So now here, so where this cancer came from? It came from your mind. It didn’t come from outside; it came from your mind. It came from your mind, that’s the main cause. So which mind? The impure mind, mistaken thoughts, the superstitious mind, ignorance, anger, attachment, which is superstitious thought, not true as we believe, not true the way they believe, which is not true, do not exist as they believe, so the superstitious thought. So how we define superstitious thought? All they are exactly that same, the ignorance, anger, attachment, superstitious thought, because there’s no such thing as they believe.

So, what I’m saying…. So therefore, so here my, the conclusion now, [pause] so we should, so actually we should realize how you feel with the, when the doctors say you have cancer how you feel with that, something unwanted, something to get rid of, something to get rid of without delay even a second. Now with the ignorance, with delusion, ignorance, anger, attachment, especially the ignorance, root, the ignorance not knowing what is self, what is I, okay, so this, so we should have much more renunciation or fear to the ignorance, much greater fear than when the doctor tells you you have cancer. So there should be double, triple, billion times much more fear to this ignorance, having this ignorance, having this anger, attachment, delusion, superstitious thought, the root, ignorance. Now how much fear we have, the renunciation, fear, unwanted, so a billion times like that should have for ignorance, anger, attachment, the root, ignorance. So it’s the same, as I mentioned before, all the those unimaginable hell realm sufferings, all caused by this, created by this, your mind wrong concept, the ignorance. So therefore now, by realizing those sufferings how much unbearable so we should renunciation or fear, the useful fear. Useful fear, because this fear to your ignorance, to your delusion, then you look for cessation, everlasting happiness, ultimate happiness, total cessation all this ignorance, this root ignorance and then the ignorance, ignorant in karma, the virtue, nonvirtue, cause of suffering, cause of happiness, then anger, attachment, so forth, all the negative karma. So here, the renunciation or the unbelievable, the useful fear, intelligent fear or the useful fear, fear coming from understanding, this is the root of the sufferings, okay. Then you want to get rid of these, so here you look for cessation of this, total cessation of this, including the cause of delusion, the negative imprint, the seed, from where it rises. So totally cease, so you look for that. Here you’re not looking for temporary pleasure, that which can’t be developed, that which can’t be completed, which has no ?continuity, you don’t look for that. You look for everlasting happiness, ultimate happiness, that which once you achieve that never, never get degenerated, forever. So, whereas samsaric pleasure, no matter how many attempt, it doesn’t get completed, it doesn’t, not only cannot increase, but doesn’t continue, stops again. So how much you look for it, your work has no end. Your work has no end, endless. So we did that from beginningless rebirth up to now, that’s why still we are suffering. We’re not liberated.

So anyway, so here, then you look for the method, so then cessation of these cause of sufferings, this ignorance, three poisonous minds, root, ignorance, then three poisonous minds, then karma, then you look for a method, then the true path, from the four noble truths, then true path comes, wisdom directly perceiving emptiness, so which, yeah, so you look for that, actualize this path. And then that has to come from, that development comes from the wisdom realizing emptiness with the imaginary. Not directly seeing emptiness of the I, aggregates, so forth, but realizing emptiness of the I, aggregates, with the imaginary. So then with this wisdom realizing emptiness then, especially directly perceiving emptiness, so you’re able to remove, you’re able to directly cease the delusions and the root, ignorance, and its cause, the cause of that is the negative imprint, seed, cease. So that’s how then you are able to achieve total liberation from all the suffering and causes.

So, until this happens, until one discover the cause of samsara, the cause of all these sufferings, and knowing the method, knowing the cause of suffering, these things, and that you can cease this, you can achieve liberation, and there’s a path, method, to cease these sufferings, cause of the sufferings.

So here, so what I was saying before, trying to learn or trying to understand those various realms’ sufferings, not only human beings’ problems, but all those other realms’ sufferings. Not only human beings’ problems, where we are, which realm we’re born, not only that, but all other realms’ sufferings. So you can see the benefit, incredible benefit, then it makes you to remove the cause of suffering, delusion and karma, the root, ignorance. And makes to look for the method, the true path, to actualize.

So, yeah, so the other one is, then by understanding those realms’ sufferings, then you’re able to develop compassion, hell beings, unbearable compassion you’re able to develop, loving kindness, to the numberless hell beings, to numberless hungry ghosts, to numberless animals, to numberless human beings, sura beings, asura beings, intermediate state beings, all the sentient beings, you’re able to develop unbearable compassion, great compassion, Mahayana compassion, yeah, and then the loving kindness, the compassion, great compassion wishing them free from suffering and the cause of the suffering, and to do that by oneself, to do that by yourself. So when the, not only having the wish, but when there is this taking responsibility on yourself, then that becomes the great compassion. Then also loving kindness, great loving kindness wishing everyone have happiness and cause of happiness. And when you are taking responsibility on yourself, I’m going to do it, then that loving kindness becomes Mahayana or the great loving kindness. So then this causes to actualize bodhicitta. So yeah, to free them from all the suffering and causes and bring them in, cause not only temporary happiness but cause something which they really need, ultimate happiness, liberation from the whole entire suffering and causes, suffering of samsara and causes. Not only that, then bring them in full enlightenment. What they really need is the peerless happiness, full enlightenment, the cessation of all the gross, subtle mistakes of the mind, the defilements, and completion of all the qualities of realizations, so this peerless happiness.

So for you, for me, for oneself then to do that, then one need, at the moment you can’t guide even one sentient being even to liberation, the cessation of all the suffering and causes, you can’t guide even one sentient being to enlightenment, to the full enlightenment, can’t guide. Even the arhats, who are totally liberated from the oceans of samsaric suffering and the cause, karma and delusion, okay, free from all the delusions, cause of delusions, even they, still there’s a possibility to make mistakes when they work for sentient beings, because not having omniscience, knowing directly everything. Why that didn’t happen, because they haven’t completed merit of wisdom, merit of virtue, two types of merit, they didn’t complete that, so still there’s the possibility to make mistakes, because not having omniscience, such as unable to see the subtle karmas of sentient beings, things like that. So, then even the tenth bhumi bodhisattva, so there are five Mahayana paths, ten bhumis to achieve enlightenment for sentient beings, so even a tenth bhumi bodhisattva still not having achieved omniscience, so still there’s a possibility make mistakes. Can’t see the subtle karmas of sentient beings. So therefore, to be able to do perfect work towards sentient beings, then first I need to achieve full enlightenment, state of omniscience.

So anyway, so therefore now, you understand how it’s so important to learn, to know about the suffering, the different realms, those different sentient, different realms’ sentient beings’ sufferings, because so useful, the second one I mentioned, compassion, so that you can, so it’s okay, you can have some good heart, not knowing those numberless sentient beings, hell beings their suffering, not knowing numberless hungry ghosts, not knowing numberless animal beings’ sufferings, and suras, asuras, those other beings, and then having some good heart, just, it’s good, I mean better than nothing, it’s good, but not, so that’s not sufficient. So if you know, if you learn, discover all those different realms sentient beings’ sufferings, so then you feel so much compassion, loving kindness, then you want to help. You want to free them from the sufferings, yeah, cause them happiness. Not only temporary but ultimate happiness, enlightenment. You want to cause them. And for that, you need to be qualified, you need to achieve the state of omniscient mind. To do that, for that then you need to achieve all the path, whole path to enlightenment you need to achieve, from beginning, guru devotion, root, from there, graduated path of the lower capable being, middle capable being, higher capable being, the whole path to enlightenment, you need to actualize, okay.

So then, so I think that’s the reason why we’re here. [laughter] That’s it. [laughter] So you can see, it’s not, why we’re here it’s not a question of for your own happiness, that’s one person, oneself. One sentient being but it’s just yourself, just for that. So here, the purpose of our gathering here is everybody, you, you, you to help everybody. Free the numberless hell beings from all the suffering and causes, bring to enlightenment. Free the numberless hungry ghosts from all the suffering and causes, bring to enlightenment. Free the numberless animals from all the suffering and causes, bring to enlightenment. Free the numberless human beings from all the suffering and causes, when I say “human beings” doesn’t mean only this world human beings. This is southern continent, there’s human beings in eastern continent, western continent, what is the other one? East, west, what? [Student: North.] Northern. Then there are numberless universes, which is scientifically mentioned, not only Dharma, but scientifically mentioned. So the numberless the realm of human beings, so free them from all the suffering and causes and bring to enlightenment. Then, numberless suras, asuras, free them from all the suffering and causes, bring to enlightenment. Then intermediate state beings there are numberless, free them from all the suffering and causes, bring to enlightenment, by oneself, by yourself. So for that then you need to be yourself perfect guide, have all the realizations, you need to be free from all the mistakes of the mind, cease all the mistakes of the mind, all the defilements, gross, subtle, then for that then you need to complete all the path, remedy path. So then for that we need to hear teachings from a qualified master and then, guru, and then reflect and meditate. So only, I’m not a qualified master, sorry. [laughter] I said to hear teachings from a qualified master but I’m not that. So the, I’m just degenerated time Mickey Mouse from Lawudo. Mickey Mouse. [laughter]

So anyway, yeah, so we have some karma from past, so that’s why we meet here now. That is, that’s what brought here together. Yeah, so then, I’m going to give tonight the oral transmission, so we don’t do the prayers tonight, so do tomorrow. So, I’m going to give the oral transmission of the Lama Tsongkhapa, the Dharma king of the three realms, desire realm, form realm, formless realm, so with the, who is embodiment of Manjushri.