Kopan Course No. 41 (2008)

By Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche
Kopan Monastery, Nepal (Archive #1746)

These teachings were given by Kyabje Lama Thubten Zopa Rinpoche at the 41st Kopan Meditation Course, held at Kopan Monastery, Nepal, in December 2008. The transcripts are lightly edited by Gordon McDougall.

Lecture 13 is a talk on the beginnings of the FPMT by Ven. Roger Kunsang, who is Rinpoche's assistant and CEO of FPMT Inc. See also the Basic Philosophy of Buddhism, to listen to the audio files and read along with the unedited transcript for Lecture 10.  You may also download the entire contents of these teachings as a PDF file

Long Life Puja for Lama Zopa Rinpoche at Kopan Monastery, 2010. Photo: Mikk Tamme.
Kopan Course No. 41: Index Page

The Index Page provides an outline of the topics discussed in each of the lectures. 

Lecture 1

  • Greeting students
  • Dharma is the cure to our beginningless delusions
  • There is nowhere in samsara that is not suffering
  • Bodhicitta and renunciation
  • Becoming enlightened to guide every sentient being
  • The gradual path of the three capable beings
  • The I is impossible to find
  • Food offering and dedication

Lecture 2

  • The benefits of the bodhicitta prayer
  • We can’t have compassion and harm somebody at the same time
  • The infallible path
  • The label depends on the base
  • The subtle object of refutation
  • Dedication

Lecture 3

  • Meditation is not enough, we need purification, merit and devotion
  • Enlightened, we can do perfect work for others
  • Tantra is the quick path
  • Realizations will take time
  • With bodhicitta we only cherish others
  • Food offering and dedication

Lecture 4

  • The benefiting of cherishing others: Tong-len
  • The benefiting of cherishing others: Geshe Chekawa prays to be reborn in hell
  • The benefiting of cherishing others: Tsumpulwa carries the leper
  • The benefiting of cherishing others: Asanga sees Maitreya
  • The benefiting of cherishing others: The Buddha pulls the chariot in hell
  • The benefiting of cherishing others: Tong-len cures diseases
  • The benefiting of cherishing others: No satisfaction unless we cherish others
  • Requesting prayer to the lineage lamas
  • How the guru manifests to guide us
  • Requesting prayer to the lineage lamas (cont)
  • Three criteria of how things exist
  • Oral transmission of The Lamp for the Path
  • Dedication
  • Do tong-len wherever you see suffering

Lecture 5

  • Recitation of The Heart Sutra and Requesting Prayer to the Lineage Lamas
  • Dedication

Lecture 6

  • Sutrayana and Mahayana five paths
  • A buddha manifests in whatever way most benefits sentient beings
  • We believe in appearance, the Omniscient One doesn’t
  • Seeing things as like a mirage
  • Look at causative phenomena as stars
  • Don’t get angry at the stick
  • The harmer is only the object of compassion
  • Causative phenomena are like an illusion
  • Causative phenomena are like a water bubble
  • Causative phenomena are like a dream
  • Causative phenomena are like lightning
  • Causative phenomena are like a cloud
  • Dedication

Lecture 7

Lecture 8

  • Requesting prayer to the lineage lamas: The three Kadampa Geshe groups
  • We can help but others must create the cause of their own happiness
  • Nonvirtuous motivation can never bring peace
  • Dedication

Lecture 9 

  • The importance of a good heart
  • Ben Gungyal and holy Dharma and worldly dharma
  • Zina, Rinpoche and Buxa
  • Zina and Darjeeling
  • The founding of Kopan
  • The education of compassion
  • The four outlines of karma
  • More on tong-len
  • Transforming suffering into happiness
  • The importance of the motivation (Four people recite the Tara praises)
  • This perfect human rebirth is more precious than a wish-fulfilling jewel
  • Perfect human rebirth: holy Dharma and worldly dharma
  • The importance of mindfulness
  • The yoga of going to sleep
  • Refuge is the door to Buddhadharma
  • The thief who has refuge beaten into him
  • Even refuge in one refuge object saves from the lower realms
  • Only Buddhism rescues from pervasive compounding suffering
  • Refuge ceremony
  • The four harmonious brothers
  • Dedication

Lecture 10

  • The basic philosophy of Buddhism
  • The three great meanings: Happiness in future lives
  • The eight ripening aspect of a precious human body
  • Having a powerful body and mind: The story of Milarepa
  • The three great meanings: achieving liberation, enlightenment and never wasting a second of this life
  • Because everything comes from the mind we have infinite freedom
  • Dedication

Lecture 11

  • Tea offering
  • The Three Principal Aspects of the Path
  • Protector prayer

Lecture 12

  • The meaning of Tara
  • Dr Nick meets the Dharma
  • The meaning of Tara (cont)
  • The Buddha manifests in whatever form is beneficial
  • The meaning of Tara (cont)  

Lecture 13

  • The beginnings of the FPMT by Ven. Roger Kunsang

Lecture 14

Lecture 15

  • Rinpoche signs his book

Lecture 16

Lecture 17

  • The merits of doing any practice with refuge
  • Life in Buxa
  • The large monasteries emphasize Buddhist philosophy
  • Life in Buxa (cont.)
  • The refuge vow not to kill
  • Developing special attitude
  • Why do we have to hear about suffering?
  • Causal refuge leads to resultant refuge
  • Mahayana refuge
  • The sufferings of transmigratory beings

Lecture 18

  • People who understand the cause of freedom have freedom in this life
  • The power of seeing a holy object
  • The power of offering and prostrating to holy objects
  • Advice about going on pilgrimage

Lecture 19

  • Buddhism and the British come to Tibet
  • Rinpoche visits the holy lakes of Tibet
  • Swayambhunath
  • The benefits of the prostration mudra
  • The oral transmission of Lamp for the Path
  • Advice on practice at home
  • The oral transmission of the Eight Verses
  • Daily practice and purification
  • Dedications and more advice

Lecture 20

  • The lung of Shantideva’s Condensed Advice (possibly)
  • Vajrasattva initiation