Kopan Course No. 33 (2000)

By Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche
Kopan Monastery, Nepal (Archive #1257)

These teachings were given by Lama Thubten Zopa Rinpoche at the 33rd Kopan Meditation Course, held at Kopan Monastery, Nepal, in 2000. The transcripts are lightly edited by Gordon McDougall. You can download the entire contents of these teachings as a PDF file.

You can also listen online to the teachings and read along with the unedited transcripts. Click on these links to access Days 1-5 and Days 6-10.

Lecture One

Kopan Course 33 Index Page : Next Lecture ►


Good afternoon. First, I’m going to recite the meditation prayer, which contains the essence of the whole path to enlightenment, the graduated path to enlightenment, the lam-rim prayer.

In the past, the meditation course was done under a canvas sheet, with bamboo walls around with simple cloth covered. It was an ascetic course, very renounced. Primitive or renounced—maybe altogether. It was primitive, so it had to be renounced. At that time, when there was very important topics happening there were planes passing overhead, big noises. They made big noises. Whenever there was a very important point, suddenly, a big noise. [RL GL] Suddenly there was big noise. Anyway, maybe we have to distract the pilots. [GL] No, joking. Anyway, so I think it is a miracle. [Airplane noise] [RL GL] But this time small one.

It is really a miracle, a great miracle to open our mind in this life; to open our heart, our mind. Not having a closed mind, a very fixed mind, with old concepts or culture, whatever. A mind not being like stone, iron, or something very closed which doesn’t give any opportunity. Not like that. An open mind looking for new meanings, for a better life by making research or analyzing techniques. At least you even allow yourself to check, analyze, rather than living with an old, closed mind with its concepts or culture or whatever it is. Using new methods to at least giving yourself an opportunity to analyze.

Anyway, the methods to achieve peace and happiness, particularly in Buddhism—the way of studying Buddhism, the way it is planned—is by analyzing it, not just saying the words, not just having mere faith. That’s the way Buddhism is revealing, whether it is Sutra or Tantra. Everything has logic, valid reasons. Every practice has valid reasons and a deeper way to understand through analysis and through realization. This is the deeper way to understand Buddhism.

One time, when I arrived in Boston in America, United States, the person who was driving the car was a student who is now the director of the Wisdom Publications, not the one who actually started it, Dr Nick, the Australian doctor who was a monk for quite some time, who was asked by Lama Yeshe to start the Dharma Publishing, to produce Dharma books. The present one, Tim, was driving car where he lives, Boston. So it’s very surprising. I don’t know how many millions of people there in Boston, I have no idea. Maybe a few million, I’m not sure. So from a materially well-developed city, from those millions of people, this one person came all the way from the city to Nepal, to Kopan. It is very surprising. I mean, if you compare all that culture, the material development, among those millions of people, this person came all the way. What decides that? What is it that decides that this person, this one person, comes so far to here, to Kopan? Anyway, I was thinking it was very interesting. I see that’s very interesting point of life. Very interesting.

Many years ago, when I was in Sydney, Australia—I think when I went to Australia the first time with Lama Yeshe, after the fourth course. Is that right? [RL] After the famous sixth course [GL] after the very famous sixth meditation course that is unforgettable. Many people attended that. I think there were three hundred at the beginning. What made it very famous is that that’s the course where there was the most number of people. I’m not sure but I think I spent probably two weeks, two whole weeks on the subject the eight worldly dharmas, and then suffering, of course! [RL GL] No doubt. And suffering. The eight worldly dharmas, of course, that’s the cause, and then the suffering, the problem, what manifests afterwards, that what they create. Anyway, that’s what made it famous. I think there was a Christian group in that course. I think a Christian group came. I think most of them left and went down to Kathmandu and used to gather in the restaurant, although a few came back after some time.

So, after that, Dr Nick and a few original Australian students who attended those early third and fourth courses invited Lama and myself to Australia to do a course there. When I was in Sydney I thought it was amazing, amazing. For the same reason: such a highly developed, materially developed country; their way of thinking, culture, totally something. And then, to be able to wake up, to able to open the mind, to learn Buddhism and to learn this practice; to find interest in Buddhism. I thought it was amazing. It was a miracle. I mean, not everybody can do this. Those who come to meet Buddhism from their side, to learn and experiment—it’s just amazing. It’s a miracle I thought. That a mind from that society can open up like that.

Whereas, in the East, like in India or wherever, for hundreds of years in the environment Buddhism has been flourishing and practiced. You open your eyes and what you see is temples, holy objects, stupas and so forth. Even by opening your eyes and looking around, even physically, even the environment is like that, so it’s not surprising. In Tibet, it’s like that so it’s not that surprising that people learn Buddhism. If you compared the West it’s not surprising. It’s surprising but, comparing to the West, it’s not so surprising.

The wish to learn Buddhism, to practice meditation, that is contained in Buddhism. This is opening a door, giving freedom to yourself, releasing yourself from the prison of wrong concepts, the prison of delusions, the prison of sufferings, giving freedom to yourself. It’s opening door to liberation, that which is free forever from the entire suffering of samsara and, not only that, the great liberation, full enlightenment. It’s especially opening the door also to bodhicitta, the ultimate good heart benefiting other sentient beings. It’s opening a door, directing your life towards full enlightenment; to achieve that, to be able to do that, to be able to accomplish extensive benefit to the sentient beings, to liberate the numberless sentient beings and bring them in the peerless happiness, full enlightenment. When you start to meditate on generating compassion towards every single sentient being without exception, without discrimination, to every obscured sentient being, when you start to meditate to generate compassion to every living being, when you start to learn the great compassion and practice—it’s a door to all that. The benefit is limitless like the sky, the benefit to able to completely benefit all sentient beings; the benefit is limitless like the sky.

The meditation we are going to learn, that we are interested in brings a change in our life for the better. In short, the minute you meditate, it brings peace and calm, in your heart, it makes your mind tranquil, because meditation is like medicine. It is the antidote to disturbing, obscuring emotional thoughts, the negative emotional thoughts. When they arise, your mental continuum is disturbed. It’s the opposite to peace.

Meditation transforms your mind into renunciation. In other words, it brings contentment, making the dissatisfied mind satisfied, and transforming the mind of painful attachment or anger into the mind of patience. And as well meditation makes the mind awaken, it brings wisdom, from the ignorance, it transforms the mind into a good heart, happy, peaceful and fulfilled. It makes you to see your life as meaningful, worthwhile. It transforms the self-cherishing thought into this positive mind. This is real meditation. And this is what we should practice. This kind of meditation is what we should practice in our life.

What I was going to say, we should not be satisfied by just doing breathing meditation or by paying attention while walking or something. By doing some concentration that immediately calms down the mind or brings some peace. It’s like you work very hard and then stop doing the work and take a rest. Or when you feel very hot you go in the shade and have some comfort. It’s kind of similar to that. You should not be satisfied with just that, something which is just an immediate kind of quieting of the mind. From the noisy mind, it becomes kind of quiet. Our precious human life is not just for that. What I’m saying is our precious human life is not just for that. You should not be satisfied just with this.

If there’s no ignorance rising, then there wouldn’t be anger. The sicknesses, the chronic disease of the mind, attachment, the painful mind, these things won’t arise. Therefore, we need to eliminate ignorance, from where all these disturbing emotional thoughts—and all those other roots and branches, the negative emotional thoughts, the delusions—arise, from where they’re born. We should attempt to eliminate ignorance. We should attempt to make it impossible for it arise. To do that we must attempt to eliminate the negative imprints or seeds left on the mental continuum. We must attempt to cease it completely. That’s what we should do. That’s what we should do. If we don’t want suffering, if we do not want problems, then that’s what we should do.

If there’s no ignorance, there’s no mind unknowing about what I is, what mind is, the ultimate nature of the I, ultimate nature of the mind. The mind which is unknowing of all this—that is ignorance. Without that, there’s nothing that we create. Death. We don’t even want to hear the name of death in the West. In recent years people have started listening and waking up to learn about death, to help other people dying and also to learn about death. And also, to know your death, to learn about death, which includes your death. Then doing a meditation practice to make yourself prepared for death, to know what to do when death comes. When the enemy comes that make you ready to defeat, to overcome the enemy. So like that. Making preparations, making yourself prepared for death. To not experience death, to make preparations to be free from death, to overcome death, even if that doesn’t happen this life, even if one didn’t achieve that level of path where you can overcome death in this life, when you experience death, it makes you very happy. Even when death comes, even though you haven’t overcome aren’t yet free from death, if yourself are prepared through meditation practice, what Buddha has taught, it makes [you very happy at death time].

It leads to a much better life, where it is much easier to practice, where you can complete the path to enlightenment. That way you can be enlightened, such as in a pure land of a buddha, or to take a better rebirth, a healthier body, in the right environment where there is all the support or conditions to practice, and then continue to develop your mind in the spiritual path.

Then, from life to life you can go from happiness to happiness, to liberation and enlightenment. Therefore there is no fear. You have a very clear direction. You know where you’re going. You have a clear direction, confidence, you know where you’re going, so there is no fear. For that person, death is just like changing a dress. You take off the old dress and put on the new dress, the new fashion. [RL GL] So, at least there is no fear. There is confidence. You are full of confidence that you won’t reincarnate in those suffering realms of hell, hungry ghosts or animals.

Even when death comes, even when you’re experiencing it, through meditation practice, making the mind more and more positive, sincere, good-hearted by developing the thought of benefiting others, even when you are experiencing death, the end of the life, it is a happy death; it’s not a scary death.

What I’m trying to say, the essence is that you shouldn’t just be satisfied with some short-term peace; a short-term quiet mind or something like that. This precious human life shouldn’t be spent just for that. That’s not the real meaning of life. That’s not the real purpose of living, why we have taken this precious human rebirth this time, not just that.

To clarify, the real meaning of life is not even ultimate happiness, everlasting happiness, the liberation which is free forever from the whole entire suffering of samsara. Of course, that’s so essential, so important to achieve, by ceasing delusion and karma, but still to achieve ultimate happiness, that great peace of liberation for oneself, that is not the real meaning of life. Even if it’s ultimate happiness. Achieving that for oneself, even that’s not the real meaning of life.

The real meaning of life, the real purpose of living, is making one’s own life useful for others. Making one’s own life useful for other sentient beings; to benefit other sentient beings. As I normally mention, as I normally introduce this way, one should make one’s own life useful to others, to other living beings. In other words, to benefit others. One way is benefiting others, causing happiness to others, in this life. That is one. Of course that is short-term happiness. The happiness you’re helping others have is short-term.

The more important benefit, service, to other sentient beings, is causing them to have happiness for all their coming future lives. You’re causing beings happiness in all their coming future lives.

First, you benefit them in just this life, causing them to find comfort, to solve problems, like that—giving shelter, food, clothing, solving this life’s problems. Causing happiness this life. Then next, the second one you cause them to have happiness of the future lives; all the coming future lives’ happiness. You can see this service is much more important. All the coming future lives, so many lifetimes, all the cause of happiness to others.

More important than even this, as I mentioned before, the more important service than the second one: by ceasing the delusions, the disturbing emotional thought and actions motivated by that, karma, by ceasing completely the cause of the suffering which is within them then, that way, to liberate them forever. Make them free forever from all the entire suffering, all the problems—make them impossible to experience them again, so total liberation. Causing them to achieve total liberation.

This one is so urgent, that service to others. You can see how that is urgent. If you don’t do remove the cause of suffering which is within them, they will continue to suffer. Whatever other method you do they will experience the problem again and again. Whatever is externally done, as long as the causes of suffering which is within them—the disturbing emotional thought, karma, the negative imprint which is on their mental continuum—if they are not removed they will experience suffering endlessly. The same problem will recur, whether it’s starvation, sicknesses, whatever, again, again, if the cause is there it will recur. Therefore, the service we must do for others is to cease the cause of suffering which is within them.

That’s why Dharma is so important, why practicing Dharma, why meditating is so important. Here we’re thinking about helping others. Of course, that includes yourself.

It’s important to be free from suffering, to practice Dharma to cease the cause of suffering; to see the cause of suffering. How that is so urgent. So that’s what I’m saying. Before, my talk went here and there like this, kind of like water running all over the field. But what I was trying to say before was, this is important, the emphasis of what I was saying, this is so important: not just to sometimes stop anger or attachment from arising, that’s not enough.

You must eliminate ignorance, from where all those other negative emotional thoughts come from that make you unhappy or bring you all the problems. To make it impossible to arise forever, the negative imprints or seeds should be completely eliminated. No external means can do that. No external means, such as doctors operating, cutting the body up—they cannot see the mind. Even by cutting the body they cannot see the mind. No operation can take away the negative imprint. That which gives rise to the delusions, that which motivates karma and then creates suffering—ignorance—cannot be removed by an operation or with a machine.

The only means to do this is Dharma, there is nothing else. In particular the wisdom realizing emptiness; by developing your wisdom directly perceiving emptiness, you remove the imprint of the delusion such as the ignorance, the seed, the nature of the imprint. So only this mind can directly see that. Therefore, realizing the ultimate nature, emptiness, is so essential.

Now you can see how that is the most important thing in our life, to meditate on that, otherwise it is impossible. How you can liberate yourself from suffering? How you can liberate others from suffering? Impossible. There’s no way.

Then even the fourth one is the most important service to other sentient beings. That is to cease even the subtle negative imprint left by the ignorance, bringing them in peerless enlightenment, full enlightenment. The wrong concept simultaneously born, the grasping mind. While there’s no I in the body, on the association of body and mind, while you cannot find it at all based on the association of the body and mind base, the concept, the grasping, strongly holds that there’s the I there. There’s the self there.

You’re born with it, from beginningless rebirths, with this wrong concept, then the subtle negative imprint left by this delusion. By ceasing completely even this then, in that way, bringing sentient beings into the peerless happiness of full enlightenment. Sometimes it is translated as “fully awakened state.” That is bringing the state that cessation of all the mistakes of mind, gross and subtle, then the completion of all the realizations to bring sentient beings to that. That is the greatest. Among all the service you can offer others, the fourth one is most important one. So in regards making your life useful to others, the purpose of our living, why we have taken this extremely precious human body is for what? Why do we live? What do we live for? Why we try to be alive? What for? Why do we survive? Why do we spend so much money to survive? Why do we provide so many conditions to be alive, to survive? Why do we take medicine, have operations, try to have a long and healthy life? What is a healthy life for? It should be for this: to benefit others.

So, what is it that path, the Dharma, that ceases even the subtle negative imprint? It is only by the wisdom realizing emptiness. To make it simple, it’s just that. What is it that Dharma or path which directly sees that? It is the wisdom realizing emptiness. So with path, by practicing Dharma, by actualizing the path, method alone without wisdom cannot remove the delusion, the cause of the delusion, the seed. Even the subtle negative imprints cannot be removed. Whatever great other realizations you have, without the wisdom directly realizing emptiness, you cannot remove the delusions, including the negative imprint.

I think it’s time. I just mumbled. [GL] I went on and on. A good heart is very important. Loving kindness, compassion in daily life is extremely important. We have to make cause of suffering, delusion, never ever arise. We have to do that otherwise when we die and are reborn, we will experience all the sufferings of the six realms, on and on. No end.

As I mentioned before, I’ll repeat again, we must remove the imprint of delusion. For that, we need to study teachings on emptiness, on right view. We have to realize emptiness. Not just what people call ‘emptiness’, not just any kind of emptiness, what people call ‘emptiness’, even Dharma books—what anybody call ‘emptiness’, not that. It has to be the right one. It has to be right one because only that attacks the root of samsara, root of the suffering, only one very specific wrong concept. There are not many roots of samsara; there’s one typical, there’s one specific ignorance: even though the I exists in mere name, merely imputed by the mind. It’s not that the I doesn’t exist . The I exists. It exists being merely labeled by the mind. That’s how it exists. That’s what the I is. That’s all.

By realizing ultimate nature of I, after that, by realizing absolute truth of the I then, as a result, you realize the conventional truth of the I. You come to know how the I exists. You come to discover what is the I. That it exists being merely imputed by the mind. When you discover the I, this is how you see it. Everything other than that is a hallucination. Any I other than that, what we believe, what appears to us, is a totally hallucination, a false I.

So, therefore, there’s a very specific root of suffering, ignorance: a concept. I’m not going to go into details. Twenty-four hours a day our mind continuously imputes this I. Our mind imputes the I.

Now, here, “I’m talking” or “I’m listening to Dharma” because I get the mind listening to the Dharma, I get the body sitting—so the mind labels, “I am sitting.”

The aggregates, the association of this body and mind here at Kopan Monastery, so the mind labels, “I am here at Kopan.” I’m doing the meditation course at Kopan Monastery. Twenty-four hours a day our mind labels this I: I’m doing this. I’m happy. I’m unhappy; on and on, constantly mind labels this I.

By depending on the aggregates which is the base to be labeled, because the aggregates exist, mind label the I, then depending what function they do the mind constantly labels “I’m doing that.” The mind constantly makes up the label. Constantly.

The mind merely imputes the I. It merely imputed the I. As soon as mind merely imputes the I it should appear back to us ‘merely labeled by mind.’ It should appear back to us like that, as merely labeled by mind. That’s what the reality is. So it should appear that way but it doesn’t. When it appears back, right after imputation, it doesn’t appear that way. When it appears back it doesn’t appear back to us merely labeled by mind. It doesn’t appear back to our mind as merely, labeled by the mind, but totally the opposite, as something else.

How does that happen? How does that happen? Due to past ignorance, this concept grasps or apprehends that the I truly exists; it apprehends the way the I exists as not merely labeled by the mind. Which means existing from its own side. So that ignorance leaves a negative imprint on the mental continuum. Right after the mind imputes the truly existing I, the negative imprint immediately projects that, it decorates it. Like we decorate the house, painting the walls or putting carpet on the floor, like that. The negative imprints left by the ignorance decorate, immediately project the hallucination that the I exists not merely labeled by the mind. Which means, there’s something there existing from its own side, not just merely labeled. This hallucination of inherent existence is projected, this projection of not being merely labeled by the mind is projected on the merely labeled I. On the merely labeled I - that which exist; merely labeled I which exists; so on that, project this hallucination ‘not merely projected by mind’.

This happens within the same continuation of mind. Because we don’t practice mindfulness that the I is empty between the second before mind labels merely imputed I and the next second of that mind, because of not meditating on emptiness, on dependent arising, on existing in mere name—because we are no able to meditate in this way, we allow our mind to hold onto it. We let our mind hold onto the sense that this I is not merely labeled by the mind, that it is true, that it is one hundred percent true. That the way the I appears to us is not merely labeled by mind, as so we apprehend or to hold onto is as true. This is right, this is one hundred percent right.

Right at that minute, right at that second, that particular concept becomes the ignorance, the root of samsara; the root of all the other delusions, of karma, as well as all the sufferings. All the sufferings of the human realm: the suffering of rebirth, old-age, sicknesses, the worldly fears you meet, encountering undesirable objects, not finding desirable objects, our inability to find satisfaction.

Billionaires or zillionaires externally might be very wealthy, but their minds are so miserable; there is so much unhappiness, so much dissatisfaction. A beggar might have dissatisfaction, but one who is unbelievably wealthy has nothing but dissatisfaction, unhappiness. The misery in their life is so much greater than the beggar. For example, when a deva experiences the five signs that death is approaching, they experience unbelievable mental suffering, like being in hell.

[All suffering comes from this.] Wars, killing and being killed by each other, all other problems, suffering in their life such as jealousy and so forth. Then the suffering of the hell beings, the eight hot hells and eight cold hells, the six neighboring hell and the ordinary hell suffering. Then the hungry ghosts, the pretas—the five types of hungry ghosts, the hunger and thirst and the other major sufferings, such as disappointment, tiredness, and three types of obscuration: outer obscuration, food obscuration, inner obscuration. There are so many sufferings. They cannot find one spoon of food for hundreds of thousands of years. Even a spoon of food, they cannot find. Even a drop of water, due to their heavy karma in the past life, being stingy, miserly, not making charity, they could not find even a drop of water for hundreds of thousands of years.

Then the animals, the realm we can see, their major suffering is being eaten by another one. Not only eaten by animals but also eaten by human beings on top of that. Then being extremely foolish, suffering heat and cold and being tortured and so forth.

This particular wrong concept that I explained before becomes the root for all these oceans of samsaric sufferings. Therefore, to eliminate this there’s only one way. Even though there’s many views called emptiness in the teachings, there is only one view that is we realize we can eliminate this ignorance. There are four schools of the Buddhist philosophy, and the fourth one, the Madhyamaka School has two [subschools], Svatantrika, anyway, I don’t remember the Sanskrit terms for those. Knowing the names in the Tibetan language is more useful. If one wishes to study the texts more intensively, then it is more useful to learn the Tibetan language. So, therefore, the four schools of Buddhist philosophy are: che-tan ne-wa, [Vaibhashika], do-de-pa [Sautrantika], tsem-tsampa [Cittamatra] and u-mapa,[Madhyamaka]. Then there’s rang-gyu-pa, [Svatantrika] and tang-gyu-pa [Prasangika]. Only this second one, tang-gyu-pa, only with this view of emptiness [can we totally eliminate the root of suffering, ignorance.]

Because the I is merely imputed by the mind there’s not even an atom existing from its own side. There’s not the slightest thing existing, there’s nothing. On the merely labeled I there’s nothing there, not even slightest atom, existing from its own side. There is absolutely nothing existing from its own side. Only by realizing this, only with this wisdom, can we eliminate ignorance.

I thought today is a very special day, Buddha’s Descent from Tushita. I’m not going to go over that, descending from Tushita Pure Land. There are about seven special days of Buddha and today is one very special day. On this day, whatever virtue we collect is increased by one hundred million times. If you make charity of one rupee to a beggar it becomes charity of one hundred million rupees; if you make offering of one light, it becomes offering of one hundred million lights; one prostration becomes the same as one hundred million prostrations.

So any merit you collect today is increased by one hundred million times. Therefore, I thought to do the oral transmission of the Heart Sutra and then maybe few pages from the Diamond Cutter Sutra.

In the past, a great Indian pandit, Vasubandhu, Lopon Niknyen recited the sutra text, Abhidharmakosa every day. There was a pigeon on the roof that used to hear whenever he was reciting this text. One day the pigeon died and Vasubandhu checked with his clairvoyance where the pigeon was born. He saw the pigeon was born to a family of human beings down in the valley, so then he went down, saw the child and he asked the family whether he could have the child.

The family accepted this, so he took care of the child, who then became monk. This child became an expert, he become learned in Abhidharmakosha, which he had heard in his past life when he was pigeon. In this life, when he became a human being, he wrote four commentaries on it. It was very easy for him to study Abhidharmakosha but when he studied a Madhyamaka subject, the teachings on emptiness, he found it hard. Why: because he didn’t get to hear much on that teaching in the past life. So it’s a question of how much the imprint is left on the mental continuum in the past, by listening to the teachings, and of which type of teaching.

As far as the Buddhadharma, Buddha’s teachings, the great advantage here, even if you don’t understand at all philosophical teachings, even if you find it very hard to understand, just by listening to it, the benefit of what you get is like the limitless sky. The benefit of what you get is like the limitless sky. In this life or the next life, it becomes easy to understand, easy memorize the words, easy to understand the meanings, and also easy to be able to actualize the Path, that which is contained in that.

Then these subjects, Buddha’s teachings on emptiness, Perfection of Wisdom or Gone Beyond Wisdom; there’s scripture path—the gone beyond wisdom path—then there’s the nature—the gone beyond wisdom nature—which leads to the result—the gone beyond wisdom result. This ultimate result is the Buddha’s wisdom, the dharmakaya. That is the real, ultimate perfection of wisdom.

The teachings on the perfection of wisdom, the Buddha’s teachings that reveal emptiness, have made possible all the past numberless buddhas, all the present and all the future buddhas. They have been made by this wisdom—the gone beyond wisdom or the perfection of wisdom—the wisdom realizing emptiness. All the three-times’ buddhas are born from this. All the bodhisattvas are born from this. All the arhats are born from this. And this perfection of wisdom is the one that liberates numberless sentient beings from the oceans of samsaric sufferings, whose continuation has no beginning. Therefore, these teachings are unbelievably precious.

So think, “While I have all the opportunities to practice Dharma this time, having received this perfect human body, having met the Dharma, having met the Virtuous Friend who reveals the path of liberation, the path to enlightenment—during this time and before death comes, it is not sufficient just receive good rebirth next life, even for myself to be free, able to achieve liberation from samsara—even that’s not sufficient. I must achieve enlightenment. I must achieve full enlightenment to liberate numberless sentient beings from all the sufferings and bring them to full enlightenment. Therefore, I need to actualize the wisdom realizing emptiness, the perfection of wisdom. I need to realize this, therefore, I’m going to have oral transmission of this teaching, Buddha’s teaching.”

[Long mandala offering]

[Short mandala offering]

[Refuge and bodhicitta]


One must meditate, concentrate on the sound, the words that I’m reciting as much as possible without distraction. And then also think, dedicate each word that you hear, “May this be the cause to actualize the meaning of the path in my heart, immediately, and with each word that I hear may I be able to actualize the wisdom realizing emptiness, immediately, in other sentient being’s mind when I recite these words or when I say these words to others.”

If you dedicate like this, I think everything’s up to the power of mind, the wish. So things can happen.

[Oral transmission: the Heart Sutra]

Just a few pages today, of the Diamond Cutter Sutra.

[Oral transmission]

So, about ten pages [GL], small ten pages. So I’ll stop there. Of course, if we continue, before we finish the course we might become liberated from suffering [GL] and become enlightened, then won’t be able to do the course. I’m joking!

It is said in the sutra teachings, that ten eons’ of practicing charity, morality, the precepts, patience, perseverance, concentration, that that much merit is small when compared to listening to teachings on emptiness. So you see how much merit may be collected just by listening to the teachings, so much more what we collect right now. There’s much more than ten eons’ practice of morality, charity, patience, perseverance, concentration and so forth.

By leaving the positive imprint by listening to the teaching then, sooner or later, to quickly realize preparation to realize emptiness. Sooner or later you come to know, you discover what you are; you see what you are—the ultimate nature of I, the ultimate nature of the mind. Definitely by just listening to the teaching on emptiness, what you have just heard, by leaving the positive imprint on the mind, that definitely brings you to enlightenment. Definitely this imprint manifests by actualizing wisdom realizing emptiness then gradually, definitely, able to be free forever from the whole entire suffering of the problems, however, the oceans of suffering of samsara.

I’ll stop here and from time to time maybe continue. Today is very auspicious. Due to the power of the time, the special time, it creates unbelievable merit. You collect unbelievable merit just to start today.

[Mandala offering]

Please dedicate the merits we collected—past, present, future, by oneself, by others—to actualize bodhicitta, ultimate thought of the good heart, bodhicitta. Also all the happiness, success for oneself, for all living beings; to be generated within one’s own mind, one’s own family members, and in the mind of all living beings without delaying even a second. That which is generated may it increase.

[Dedication prayer]

And then, also, the merits to actualize the wisdom realizing emptiness within one’s mind, in the mind of others and that which is generated to be increased.

[Dedication prayer]

Due to all the past and future merit collected by me, that which exists but does not exist from its own side, may the I who exists but does not exist from its own side, who is totally empty, achieve Buddha Shakyamuni’s enlightenment, which exists but doesn’t exist from its own side, that which is totally empty. And lead all sentient beings, who exist but do not exist from their own side, who are totally empty, to that enlightenment which exists, but doesn’t exist from its own side, that which is totally empty, by myself alone, who exists, but do not exist from its own side, who is totally empty.

[Dedication prayer]

So, thank you very much and good night.

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