Kopan Course No. 11 (1978)

By Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche
Kathmandu, Nepal November 1978 (Archive #394)

The following is a transcript of teachings given by Lama Thubten Zopa Rinpoche at the Eleventh Kopan Meditation Course in November 1978. 

You may also download the entire contents of these teachings in a pdf file.

Section Five

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Session 25

...to listen to the teaching in order to achieve the fully enlightened state for the benefit of all the mother sentient beings.

So the when the mind is extremely confused, under the control of evil thought of worldly Dharma, attachment, seeking only the pleasure of this life, then particularly when one has relationship problems. Too much clinging. Too much clinging to the body, like that. Because of that, there are so many problems for one’s own life. During those times, it is very good to meditate like this. To make the uncontrollable, evil thought of attachment disappear, you examine the person’s body. When the mind is so much in confusion, so much clinging to the body, it makes one’s own life very difficult. Then, during those times, you find it very hard to control attachment. If the person is in front of oneself, you don’t have to visualize the person. It’s very easy to do the meditation. However, even if he’s in another country, examine the body.

At the beginning, when you remember that person, as you see the body, as you remember the body, not the beauty that is exaggerated by one’s own superstition. One exaggerates. With attachment, one has exaggerated. Secondly, the absolute, the real beauty, the beautiful body, handsome body—it appears to oneself, after one has exaggerated, this appears to one’s own mind. Then one thinks over and over how beautiful, beautiful, more and more reasons. Because of his hairs, beautiful nose, you make many commentaries. Many long commentaries, how beautiful he is. You more and more exaggerate like this. Then you completely believe in it. That there is really something there.

First, this is how it appeared. How we believe and how it appeared. Appearing like this, believing like this and then attachment develops. Then the mind becomes very confused, very unpeaceful. So, then you check up. Yeah, I see it like this. Actually, in reality, is there a body like this? Real, absolute? Question and check, how it is. First check the very inside, the skeleton. Inside, the very inside. From the head down to the feet, the very inside. Now you are seeing the reality, the essence that is inside. Then the skeleton. The head has a very big hole, here like this, and a very long mouth. Then the neck, kind of like piled up, one on top like that. Then, what else? Then the very tiny bones, kind of here, here big pieces, tiny here. And here the pieces are bones, small pieces, like that. Then the ribs, very long ones. Two things wrapped like this, then what else? Then the thighs, the legs—anyway you understand. There are lots of holes somewhere between, then the feet, also having many pieces of bones. So then like that, then you meditate. First you watch this like this. On that you cannot find the absolute existence … the existence of the beautiful body. Not inside the bone, you cannot find.

Then the second time you watch the flesh. Starting from the brain. A little bit like a football. The figures on the brain like a map—on the maps you have marks like this, going like this, like that. Is there any interest there? First around the brain, is the real body that I said before, which I believe in, is it there or not? Check like this. On the small pieces here, the lungs, the heart, all the pieces you gradually you check, down to the feet. You cannot find it. There is nothing to cling to. There is no object to cling to.

“But there is something definitely there, something. I know, I know. I know, inside there is beauty.” Inside there is no beauty. There is no beauty. Flesh, bones, blood like this, between skin. “But there is something, there is some beauty, there is something from the body, on this body. There is some beauty there, somehow, something real there, I really see it, something. I really feel it and I really see it, there is something real, something there, beautiful, some beauty there.”

Then check. On the bones, flesh. So now the skin. The only thing left is the skin, that you see real beauty from the side of the skin. Take off the skin, put it some other place. Don’t put it together. Without putting together, put it somewhere. Separate. You can see what it looks like. Is that the beauty that I was believing in, that I was seeing before? Check. Check. It’s kind of like your skirt is left there. The clothes that you wear. Like this long cloth you left there on the ground. On the skin there is nothing, there is no object to cling to. You didn’t find anything to cling to on that skin. So now it’s lost. Where it is? Where it is? The real, the absolute beautiful object, where it is? It’s not there, nowhere.

When it’s together, skin, bones inside, flesh, then covering the bones, then skin put outside, wrapped up—but when it’s all together there is some beauty there. When it’s separate like this, there is no beauty, but when it is all wrapped up, when it’s all fixed up, together like this, there is some real beauty there, on that body. It looks kind of solid, more solid than before. Then again the formation of atoms; the skin is the formation of atoms. So you disintegrate the atoms, like sand grains.

[dogs barking] They are giving advice on impermanence and death.

So then like this, like the sand grains, you disintegrate, disintegrate. Visualize they are scattered, these atoms. Then where that really absolutely existent beauty is, check. You can’t find. It’s just the skin, that’s formation—it’s just a whole bunch of atoms, put together, and you make certain shapes and it becomes a vase, in the shape of bricks, a pot, or vase or something. It’s just a group of atoms, having gathered, that’s all.

You concentrate on that, like this. Concentrate upon that. You can concentrate for one hour, very good. When the mind is so confused, about to become crazy, you cling so much, you don’t get it. When what this attachment seeks doesn’t become successful, there is the danger that the mind will become crazy, by worrying so much. During those times, this meditation is really the best medicine.

Then, right away, as you meditate upon this, that incredibly painful attachment, coming up, rising up, that goes away. That disappears. The mind becomes so peaceful, relaxed. Very good meditation. If one uses this meditation, if one practices this, especially when one has such problems like this, in life, it is so effective. This is call mindfulness of the body. These meditations are contained in sutra teachings.

There are four mindfulnesses, and this is the mindfulness of the body.

Then similarly, also it’s very good to check one’s own body. You watch very clearly all the inside things. This is meditation on the mindfulness of the body. Being aware of the nature of the body. Normally we look, we see the outside, we only think of the outside but we don’t think so much of the inside. We ignore what is inside unless you have a disease or some very urgent thing, otherwise normally, you it because there is nothing nice inside. Therefore we find it very hard to control attachment to one’s own body.

For us beginners, who don’t have great compassion, great love, who don’t have realizations, who don’t have understanding of shunyata, who don’t have realization on the wisdom realizing voidness, normally this is a very powerful meditation to really cut off the life problems, the problems of mind and body. One is meditation on impermanence and death. Then relating to the body, the object of attachment, this form of meditation is extremely effective for the mind.

Some people do not like meditating on this because there is nothing nice in the body, if you watch inside the body there is nothing nice. There is nothing nice. Even if the person met Dharma a long time ago, somehow he still does not understand well this point, to transform the attachment and to generate the thought of renunciation of samsara, and still doesn’t want to meditate on those powerful meditation techniques.

So normally it is like this.

Rinpoche: Please come in
Rinpoche: Yeah, yeah, I see. I don’t mean to really make the body in pieces, with tools. Right?
Rinpoche: If you see some beauty, it’s good. If you find some beauty in the bones …
Student: Looking at it like that, the shit and everything, I get a bad feeling about my body and that’s not…

[end of tape]

Rinpoche: …if you have sexual problems, yeah, if you have sexual problems ..
Rinpoche: yeah, yeah, you see, if you have sexual problems, if you meditate, if you really think like I explained, the sexual problem will go away, you understand? If you really use these things, if you really use them to destroy the sexual problem, the sexual problem will go away.
Student: if I see body, kaka
Rinpoche:Then you have no sexual problem with that body. With that kaka body there is no sexual problem. Very simple, very simple. With that kaka body there is no sexual problem, you see. Quite simple, like that, like that. Very simple. If you experiment, okay, you experiment then let me know, okay? First you experiment, okay, then let me know, all your information, okay?
Rinpoche: I understand. If you meditate on kaka body, the sexual problem goes away. That’s all. That’s the answer. You understand? So now we just talk. Then you experiment first, you meditate, then in order to destroy the sexual problem, you meditate on this, then you check whether it is still there or it become less, okay. Then you let me know all your information, okay, experience, okay?
Student: On page 64 it says, sexual happiness is a problem. How can sexual happiness be a problem?
Rinpoche: Where?
Student: On page 64 it says this grasping, holding the belief that immorality such as deriving sexual happiness impedes receiving liberation. It seems to me that deriving sexual happiness is a positive thing rather than a negative thing.
Rinpoche: That book said?
Student: well there are four kinds of grasping and all cause suffering. And under the fourth kind is listed—deriving sexual happiness.
Rinpoche: Then? Like grasping at that.
Student: I think the attitude like that can cause more suffering than sexual happiness.
Rinpoche: The problem is, the problem is the grasping. That is the problem. That is problem. That is the problem. The problem is the grasping. In order to destroy that, in order to diminish that the object on which the grasping arises, the attachment arises should be looked at, should be meditated as ugly, so that the mind problem goes away. That’s the meditation technique.
Student: well, I am not sure that what this book and you see as a mind problem is really a mind problem. I am not sure that what you see as a problem is a problem.
Rinpoche: Yeah, yeah. Yeah.
Student: I can’t see that.
Rinpoche: Yeah, yeah, yeah, not problem, yeah.
Student: my deriving sexual happiness is not a problem for me.
Rinpoche: Oh then, oh then that’s very good. Not a problem Please do 100 times in one day. You said sexual happiness is not a problem. You said, sexual happiness is no problem, then please do 100 times, can you do 100 times one day?
Student: happiness is a state, it’s not an event. Happiness is a state, not an event.
Rinpoche: That’s right, that’s right. Happiness is a state, that’s right. That’s right. Happiness is a knowing phenomenon … yeah it is its own state. Yeah that’s right. You understand? If that’s not difficult, then it’s no problem if you do a million times?
Rinpoche: Then you don’t have attachment. It’s very good to talk, do you have attachment or not?
Student: Yes.
Rinpoche: You have attachment? How many objects are there that you have attachment for?
Student: many.
Rinpoche: Okay. Okay. All the five sense pleasures, you have attachment?
Student: yes.
Rinpoche: Really? I don’t think so. Okay, attachment is a peaceful mind or not?
Student: No.
Rinpoche: Okay. Okay. Then, okay, do you want peaceful mind or unpeaceful mind?
Student: Peaceful mind.
Rinpoche: Peaceful mind, peaceful mind. You don’t want unpeaceful mind? All right. But for sexual happiness you don’t have attachment, do you?
Rinpoche: You have attachment to all sense pleasures but you don’t have attachment to sexual happiness. That’s very great. Yeah, that’s very beautiful. Very difficult. People having attachment to other sense pleasures, not having attachment to sexual happiness is very rare. Extremely rare. That’s very high realization. Check up, check up, like this. So, you see, you have attachment. Do you have attachment? Do you have attachment to sexual pleasure? Happiness.
Student: Let’s say I’m satisfied enough that I don’t want to give up more of my attachment to sexual pleasure.
Rinpoche: Hm …mmm, you think.
Student: lets say I am satisfied enough that I don’t want to give up any more of my attachment to sexual pleasure.
Rinpoche: You are satisfied.
Student: I am satisfied, I am not interested in giving up more of my attachments to sexual pleasure.
Rinpoche: Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah. Oh then it’s fine. That’s good. That’s good. Yeah, yeah. So, I see, I see. Yeah, you want to have attachment for sexual pleasure, yeah? Oh, good, very good, very good. Yeah, yeah. Then you want don’t want to give up all the unpeaceful mind, the unsubdued mind?
Student: Perhaps not. Perhaps giving up sexual attachment might produce even more …
Rinpoche: No, I am not talking about sexual happiness, giving up. I am talking about giving up. Would you like to be free from all the unsubdued minds or not?
Student: Yes.
Rinpoche: Yes? Sure? So, what about the attachment to sexual happiness, is that peaceful mind?
Student: Well I am not sure that giving up that attachment is going to make me more peaceful or less peaceful, more socially productive or less socially productive. Well, what happens to the human race if we give up all our attachment to sexual happiness and become bodhisattvas?
Rinpoche: That’s good, that’s extremely good.
Student: I mean, that’s a serious question.
Rinpoche: That’s good. That’s what is needed.
Student: Where will the children come from? Will the human race just die when all these people grow old?
Rinpoche: Human race dying? Human race is no problem. There is no problem.
Student: Does the human race regenerate by reincarnation?
Rinpoche: The human race? Yeah, human race generally yes, by reincarnation, yes. Then? If everybody all becomes bodhisattvas and they don’t have any children, that’s okay. That’s okay if they see that’s beneficial, that’s okay.
Student: And a thousand years after that there is no people.
Rinpoche: That’s no problem, is it a problem? Huh, is it a problem? If there are no people on this earth there is a problem? You think so? You think like this.

The problem is not so much the object but the mind. I am talking about the shortcomings of attachment, you see, from where all the confusion comes, you see. This is source of all problems of life. Since this is the source, we’re trying to understand how all the things arise from this. We are trying to recognize this and then we are trying to meditate on the remedies in order to destroy it, in order to destroy these unsubdued minds.

Then, you see, those higher beings, high bodhisattvas, arhats, those beings, they don’t have attachment, they are free from attachment. You are saying that if you give up the attachment to your sexual happiness, it is a big problem, worse, that’s what you are sort of figuring out. If you use that, “If I do this, the problem might get worse.” That’s what you are thinking, isn’t it?

Student: A lot of the violence, wars, and hostilities, even in the world is the result of political and religious institutions that repress people’s basic and natural instincts. Due to the repression of those instincts, people become rigid and that rigidity builds up until you get somebody like Adolf Hitler who starts unloading the people’s energy in a war.
Rinpoche: Then, what …
Student: Check up on that!
Rinpoche: So the world’s problem is caused by religion, yeah? By religion, yeah?
Student: Among other things
Rinpoche: By religion, okay. Not by the unsubdued mind that the sentient beings are born with? Those unsubdued minds did not cause the problem in the world?
Student: Well, the social, cultural, and religious institutions form the minds that are unsubdued.
Rinpoche: They have formed the unsubdued mind?
Student: That’s right.
Rinpoche: So the sentient beings are not born with it? They’re not born with the unsubdued mind?
Student: No, they are socialized to whatever particular mind they happen to be socialized to, may it be Tibetan or Indian.
Rinpoche: Then? I don’t understand...socialized means kind of having some customs, like that? So why did society decide their unsubdued mind? Why did it form this unsubdued mind?
Student: Must be ignorance.
Rinpoche: Okay. Then, ignorance? Ignorance. So actually the whole problem in the world is caused by the ignorance, the ignorance that they are born with, isn’t it? Or not?
Student: I don’t know the answer to that.
Rinpoche: Yeah, yeah, anyway you think. Okay? If you think if you give up attachment to sexual pleasure or sense pleasures then it might be worse, if it gets worse after you renounce the attachment to the sense pleasures, if by giving up it causes greater problems, then the arhats, those who are completely free, those higher bodhisattva, who are completely from the bondage, the attachment to the unsubdued mind, who do not create any more karma to circle in samsara, would have greater problems, they would have much, bigger confusion than what you have. You see. This is what is happens. Then all the highly realized yogis, and Dharma practitioners living life renouncing attachment would have greater problems, they would have the greatest confusion in their life, more than people who don’t practice Dharma, people who don’t try to renounce the unsubdued mind, you understand? It becomes completely opposite, like that.

Very simple, very simple. If, for instance, you are angry with one object, if you stop the anger your mind is peaceful. If you practice patience on that object, your mind is peaceful. Peaceful, why? Why the mind has peace, because by practicing patience, by remembering the kindness of that person, it’s gone away. So if your mind has peace, you can figure out these experiences from small things. Maybe you can’t see it with big ones, because they are not our own experience. You maybe cannot figure out those higher beings who have achieved the higher path, but we can figure it out from our small experiences.

Then, same thing. If you don’t put the figure in the fire, it doesn’t get burned. If one doesn’t jump in the fire, one doesn’t die by being burned. One doesn’t experience the suffering of hot if one doesn’t jump in the fire. If one does not let the unsubdued mind arise, then always the mind is in great peace.

Check up when the mind is happy, when the life is unhappy. Then you can understand. Check the mind, there is something … one of the unsubdued minds is strong, either anger or something is very strong when the mind is unhappy. Either missing something, the attachment seeks something and didn’t get it, missing. So then unhappy. Like that. Anyway, check like this.


Rinpoche: Or monk having sexual attachment, which one you want?
Rinpoche: Which one, you want to talk about?
Rinpoche: Which one you want to talk about?
Student: Monks trying to get subdued mind would not have sexual attachment.
Rinpoche: Sexual relations not necessary to have attachment.
Rinpoche: Not necessary.
Student: I have found it very hard to have sexual relationships without having sexual attachment. I think there is a reason Buddha didn’t start anything spiritual for the first 30 years, and also Jesus.
Rinpoche: 30, 40 years, only that much?
Student: It depends on the person. For one person it’s easy, for another person it can be difficult. One person not having sex, for another person not having sex…
Rinpoche: Yes, yes I understand, I understand. How much can control is completely individual … how much he is able to practice Dharma. How much he is able to control the attachment. Whether the person finds it difficult or not in regards to giving up the sexual relation or the action, that’s up to how much he is able to face the attachment. How much he can control it depends on that. If he wishes, he likes to control but in action he can’t, he doesn’t really try so much. He doesn’t try to control so much the attachment, then he find that much difficulty in that, like that depending on individual, his practice. Okay? Like that.

But you can’t generalize, you can’t say that because you feel the attachment, at the moment, very strong, if I don’t have this I’ll have a great problem or I’ll become crazy or I’ll become something, it will be difficult for me to live like this, comfortable, without problems. It is not our experience yet, having completely renounced the evil thought of worldly Dharma, so we cannot understand that experience, we cannot figure it out, because it’s not our experience. So we cannot see this very clearly.

The great happiness that one experiences, the great peace that one experiences, that one receives, that one establishes within one’s mind by doing the pure Dharma practice by renouncing the evil thought of worldly Dharma. As we haven’t done this, this is not our experience so it is difficult for us to see, to understand. But we can figure it out, from small experiences, as we practice that much—from that how much peace we get, it makes us happy, then the mind relaxes. From small things, you can figure out the big ones, like that.

Anyway you can’t generally think, generalize, that because it’s hard for oneself so we cannot say also other people, other Dharma practitioners, those who don’t have sexual relations at all will have a great hassle, big problems.

This is normally what people say. Normally people, even Indians who don’t know Dharma, say, “Oh, you’re monk? You’re not going to marry? You’re not going to marry?” “No, no, I am not going to marry.” “Then, oh, then, how you can live life? How you can live life without doing sexual actions, how are you going to live life? How are you going to survive?” They get frightened because they don’t understand. They don’t understand. “How can you live like this? How many years ago?” “Oh 30 or 40 years.” “Oooh.” They couldn’t figure it out. I mean this is not a realization, just a quality of that monk, but it is not any kind of high realization, but he can’t figure it out because it’s not his experience. He didn’t do that practice; he didn’t do that, so he didn’t have the experience, so he couldn’t understand. How your life can be happy, peaceful? It’s very funny. We for us, very difficult, the person says in each week, he has to have sex twice, the Indian man who was staying in the hotel, this is in India—but this is for general people, I think normally people talk about this thing, nothing particular or nothing special.

In Delhi, one of big hotels, I think, we went to shave the hair, downstairs, and he was talking about all these things. So he said, “Each week, we must have twice sex. Must lose the seed. Must take it out. Can’t stand it.” He said, it builds up, the seed—he doesn’t talk about mind, problem mind. They mainly concentrate on the physical body. The seed gets built up so it flows, he’s describing like this, the seed gets built up and it flows up. So it gets built up, it has to go away, it flows out. How you can manage that? It’s a normal question. He was very kind of surprised.

Actually a few years ago I was having tea with one doctor who lived in Katmandu, a friend of one nun, he worked for the linguistic school, I think, he was quite an old man and he was talking about the same thing as the Indian man—the seed builds up, flows up, you have to lose it. And we talked about the monks for 30, 40, 50, 80, 70 years never having this action—great yogis like that. He couldn’t figure out how that could be managed. He was so surprised.

So, actually it’s not the problem of the seed, actually the problem is the mind. They figured out, after some time feeling uncomfortable or irritation, the mind is irritation or uncomfortable, the dissatisfied aspect of mind, not satisfied with one pleasure, showing the suffering of samsara. You finished one thing so after some time again you want to have pleasure. So this attachment, the eight worldly Dharmas, is seeking again that pleasure. The previous one was finished, didn’t last, so again it seeks the pleasures. So this attachment becomes stronger, and the person feels uncomfortable. So he makes commentary in this way, without relating to the mind, related to the body, that the seed gets built up, and one has to have sexual action or something. Sexual action. One has to have sexual pleasure. So when the attachment, the evil thought of worldly Dharma gets stronger, stronger, missing, missing, remembering the previous pleasure and wanting it again, not satisfied with that, wanting again, this makes irritation, uncomfortable until he receives the sexual pleasure. Again that finishes, then again sooner or later again this attachment, not satisfied with the previous experience, is missing, and he feels uncomfortable without having that. So this shows how attachment is a problem. How having attachment is a problem. Because, why? Attachment is always dissatisfactory mind. Dissatisfactory mind. So as long as one follows the dissatisfactory mind such as attachment, there is no way to complete this action, there is no way to finish this work.

Student: You can get the same result by removing the testicles—so is it the mind or the testicles?
Rinpoche: Oh yeah, oh yeah. Even if you remove the testicles, there are still problems, if attachment is not renounced, because you see, he remembers the previous experiences, if he had previous experiences. He misses them so much. Maybe without doing something with this problem, the mind problem, physically even if they make a change, it might stop the condition, because physically your tool is missing there is particularly nothing to do. The person might be missing so much sexual pleasure, he might become crazy, yeah, that’s definitely possible. As long as he doesn’t do something with the mind, with this attachment then he can become crazy? Right? That’s true, yeah. Your question is very good. Thank you very much. Very good.
Student: There are a lot of us who consider sexual relationships should be accompanied by love….
Rinpoche: Yeah, yeah, I see, I see I understand, I understand. We have been talking especially the beginning of this session. Anyway I think it’s about time we stop.

Rinpoche: What’s your name?
Student: Carolyn
Rinpoche: As Carolyn put the question, actually love is used, I think, according to my understanding, the normal way people use, general way, one way of using is like. “I like this. I love, oh, I love this chocolate. I love this cake so much.” Normally people say it like this, with the material object. There are two types of love, one love we use for I like, I like.

We use the word love but the objects that we are attached to we cling to. The mind that clings to the object, which we call love, is unsubdued, attachment. It feels pain, an unsubdued mind. I love, I love.

The love that we are trying to generate, what’s missing in our mind and heart, is completely different from this normal love that common people use. This love has nothing to do with the material objects, because material objects do not have suffering. Material objects are not sentient beings. “I love this car.” That kind of love has nothing to do with the love that we are trying to generate. The love that we are trying to generate is, for instance, relating to one sentient being…

[end of tape]

I become a condition to create negative karma. If I am not here she would not create negative karma. I am the condition to create negative karma. Because of me, I do something and he decides and he criticizes me, he beats me, he creates negative karma. He is creating the cause of suffering. How wonderful, how good that this person who bothers me, who criticizes me, who beats me, how wonderful it is, how good it is, he doesn’t have to experience the result of this karma. If he doesn’t have to experience this suffering, how good it is. If he has always has a happy life, how good it is. Then you think like this. How good it is if he becomes free from samsaric suffering. Doesn’t have to experience this result suffering, if he becomes free from samsaric suffering, how good it is. If he receives the ultimate happiness, nirvana, enlightenment, how fantastic it is. How wonderful it is. Having the wish like this, wishing him to have happiness. Temporal happiness, ultimate happiness, wishing him to have it.

This is the love that is explained from Dharma, how to generate this love. The method shown by buddhas, by lamas, to generate love, that is this love, this love. So not one sentient being, but we should generate this love, we should have love like this for every sentient being. This kind of love has nothing to do with those other things that we normally use, with materials.

But sometimes, some people who have much good heart, when they see a beggar, terribly dirty, ugly, filthy, horrible, and feeling much compassion, much love to that person who is terribly dirty, ugly, not having nose, not having the good shape of mouth, not having any beauty, completely ugly like this, they really wish so much for this beggar to have happiness. Those things are love, which needs to be developed. As you feel with the beggar, like that one should feel with every sentient being, recognizing the sufferings of those sentient beings, what they are experiencing. Like that. Not only the animals, not only those lower realms, but all the human beings, sura, asura, all those things. By understanding their kindness, by understanding their suffering, how they experience it. Then this way we are able to generate love like we feel for this beggar, with this wounded dog. We feel that for all sentient beings.

I think time to finish.

Session 26

Just like the best color turns in the aspect of gold. After having taken this impure body, it becomes a priceless holy body of the victorious one. After having taken this impure body it becomes the priceless, holy body of the victorious one. Therefore, [firmly hold the bodhicitta.]

Then it is said by the great bodhisattva Shantideva in the Bodhicaryavatara, in the section on the benefit of bodhicitta, just like the best color that turns in the aspect of gold. There is a method to obtain this, the liquid of silver appearing as gold. There is a way to obtain this method. If one paints this liquid on the thousands of iron materials, it turns into gold. Before that the material was iron, you see, but then after having painted this liquid silver by the person who has obtained this method the iron finishes, the whole thing becomes gold. The lower quality iron gets finished and the whole thing becomes precious, very valuable, gold.

Like that, we have taken the body which is in nature impure, another way of saying, dirty, a combination of seed of the parents, white and red, formed the bones and the flesh, and skin and blood like that. There is nothing happy, pure, or beautiful in the blood and the flesh. All the aggregates are in the nature of suffering. All the aggregates are in the nature of suffering. It is like this. We have taken this samsaric body, completely in the nature of suffering but, with this body...

[Break in tape]

With this bodhicitta, the merits that we dedicated and the transcendental wisdom of shunyata that we have generated this is like the liquid silver that appears as gold that finishes the iron. The development of the transcendental wisdom of shunyata. is derived from collecting infinite merit with bodhicitta. Then this makes us completely cease the continuity of samsara. The continuity of these aggregates, which are in the nature of suffering. I am just using another term just to understand.

So it makes us cease this body which is in the nature of impurity, whose nature is dirty. It makes us achieve the vajra holy body, the unified vajra holy body, whose nature is complete, whose nature is purity. This is received by finishing completely all the obscurations, the unsubdued mind, all the disturbing unsubdued minds, even the omniscient mind, the subtle obscurations. This is the result, by having completed the work of accumulating the two types of merits—the merit of transcendental wisdom, and the merit of method. That is accumulated with the understanding of shunyata and the merit that is accumulated with bodhicitta. So this is completely pure, the unified vajra holy body as a result of completing the work of accumulating these two types of merits. This achieving this is priceless, its qualities cannot be finished explaining. The qualities of the Buddha’s body, the vajra holy body, how much it is, how long it is explained cannot be finished explaining. So, how beneficial it is for the sentient beings.

With that holy body, what great work, great benefit can be given to the sentient beings; it cannot be finished explaining. So priceless. Priceless, holy body.

So, our body is like this, in nature dirty, impure like this, in the nature of suffering, but if you use this body, while we have this body in our hand, if you use this body skillfully without wasting it, to generate loving compassion, bodhicitta, within our heart, in this life, then due the power of bodhicitta, this body gets transformed into the purest vajra holy body. Just like this, the liquid silver that appears as gold, this thing makes us finish the iron, the transcendental wisdom, which is derived from the merits accumulated with bodhicitta. It makes us finish this ordinary body, aggregates, formed by the delusions, the unsubdued mind and its action karma.

So understanding the benefits of the bodhicitta, think if I generate bodhicitta it has incredible benefits. One can purify completely samsara, these aggregates, the disturbing unsubdued mind, action karma, and it becomes the vajra holy body of the Buddha, the victorious one. By understanding this, it is necessary to cultivate the strong wish to practice bodhicitta, to generate bodhicitta.

In order to generate bodhicitta, the very first thing is to receive the mind renouncing samsara, renouncing the attachment, then in the future life, the samsaric perfection, happiness, like that, being attached to those. Renouncing that depends on renouncing the attachment, which clings so much to the pleasure of this life.

Then therefore, it is necessary to understand and meditate on the graduated meditation, which leads to bodhicitta. Think, “I am going to listen to the profound Mahayana teaching in order to achieve enlightenment for the benefit of all mother sentient beings.”

As I am supposed to explain the meditation, the purpose of meditation is to achieve the peace in the mind that is missing. It has not been achieved so far from beginningless lifetimes, or from this present life. The disturbance is the unsubdued mind, which doesn’t let the peace in the mind. Since is that is the root, there is no other way. By not renouncing this unsubdued mind, the enemy that causes all the distraction, all the problems, keeping this in the best care, within one’s own mind, and trying to achieve mind peace, to have a happy life, that doesn’t work. It brings other problems, different problems. It doesn’t work in the other way, although externally trying. Therefore, there is no other method to obtain the mind peace if this mind disease is not taken out. Like a piece of thorn in the flesh, then all the time there is pain. Even if you put some cream from outside, there is pain there, if you don’t take the thorn out. The only way is then to do something with this unsubdued mind. To diminish, to make it less, even if we cannot cease it. If one wishes to achieve mind peace, we need to diminish this, one has to control it, one has to subdue this. Subdue this.

The way to subdue this is by meditation. This is the sole purpose of meditation. Why do we do meditation?? This is the main point. Of meditation, the Dharma practice, meditation, saying prayers, reciting mantra, all this, Vajrayana, even Theravada teachings, all these things, various methods—one method is quicker than the other methods; one method is more profound, faster, a quicker means to quickly subdue, to quickly finish this unsubdued mind, this mind thorn, the unsubdued mind which is in our heart.

We use all these various method practices only for this. Whether we are going to shoot atomic bomb, or shoot the guns, or even if we shoot arrows, we destroy the enemy, the aim is the enemy. We use these to pacify, to remove, to make non-existent this unsubdued mind. This is the whole point. To achieve mind peace within the mind of oneself, within the mind of other sentient beings.

So therefore my responsibility is to explain the various methods, how to control the unsubdued mind. This is meditation. Meditation. This is my responsibility. As I know, to explain. I am not expecting everybody to understand, or everybody to practice meditation. If one finds it difficult to practice this, if you think this is disturbing to me, it is hurting me, or I’m unable to practice this, things like that, one doesn’t have to worry because there are other people who do practice. There are other people here who practice this meditation technique, who want to practice, who are practicing. So therefore one should not worry. Oh, he is telling me to practice meditation or to practice Dharma. Oh, I can’t do this, this meditation is disturbing me, hurting me. One doesn’t have to worry. One can feel happiness instead of worry, one can feel rejoicefulness. There are other people who are able to practice.

And those who don’t want to practice—I am not talking those who don’t want to understand, I am talking to people who want to understand, who want to practice—I am talking to those people. So it’s useless worrying, feeling upset, oh he’s telling me to practice Dharma, he’s telling to meditate like this, to visualize like this.

[end of tape]

…this mind that finds it quite difficult to practice this meditation, as I explained last night, or yesterday evening, if you analyze the mind, that is not wisdom. Not wisdom. That is not what we are always going to think. The mind that feels fear, or the mind that thinks it is difficult, that is the personality of the unsubdued mind, the mind which is one’s own enemy. If one is able to recognize this mind that is one’s own enemy, the evil thought of worldly Dharma, that thinks, “Oh this is difficult, very difficult, don’t practice, oh, don’t visualize,” that gives advice to you, “It will make you upset, don’t do this. That is not wisdom. That is not wisdom, which is the helper for obtaining happiness. This is the evil thought of Dharma, which is one’s own enemy. That’s what he thinks.

So depending on the person himself, whether he becomes more friends with wisdom or whether he becomes more friends with the eight worldly Dharmas depends on how much problem, how much he finds difficult that meditation, finds it difficult to accept, finds it difficult to practice.

The person who become more friends with wisdom, who listen more to wisdom, who takes the path of wisdom, then for him there is no difficulty. For him it is very effective medicine, tranquilizing. So like that, anyway.


So as I explained yesterday in the afternoon, when the mind has such a huge problem, incredible big confusion, even you can’t see the earth or the sky, like Mount Everest, like Mt. Meru, when one is danger to commit suicide, to jump in the river, to shoot oneself, to jump out from the bridge—you have no method, the mind is an incredibly huge problem, confusion like this—in fact there is no confusion. In fact, there is nothing. The whole is just unnecessary. You unreasonably create this confusion, actually. Actually there is no confusion. The person believes his mind is in great confusion; there is no method to control his mind. The mind is completely empty of the method, no understanding of Dharma at all. He worries so much, finally the best thing he can think of is to shoot himself. The quickest way. Or put electricity or injection. Or to go out of the city where there are big rivers, like Sydney, and jump in the river. Try to finish the human life as quickly as possible.

This is lack of practicing Dharma, lack of thought training, lack of understanding the practice renouncing the evil thought of worldly Dharma. So that is missing, this is the root. This root is missing.

So, what I am saying is that these meditations are extremely beneficial, so beneficial for the mind, especially in those times. More effective than when you meditate, when you don’t have those problems, like this. If one is able to practice in those times, then it’s incredibly beneficial. Actually when I was talking yesterday, checking the body like this, f some people, it was understood, meditate on shunyata. That was meditation on shunyata, examine like this. For some people it becomes hiding. To control the attachment. In effect it was the meditation on shunyata of the body. The emptiness of the body.

Because you are checking, because you are assessing, you are examining your view. Does it really exists as one sees it. As I believe, as I see there. That absolute existence of that beautiful body. So I stop there.

Then also another thing to control attachment is to visualize the body completely red, like a tomato. Or what do you call this that you put on the ice cream?


Cherry. The problem might be if you are visualizing a cherry you want to put it on ice cream. You might bite the person, seeing that person completely as a cherry. Seeing them as completely red, attachment also goes away, when you change the color. Or like full of worms, like rotten meat, which smell. Visualize like this. In the teaching the method is explained like this— attachment arises by exaggerating that it is beautiful like this. And then completely believing in that absolutely beautiful flower, the object.

So in the teaching it is explained that in order to control you should meditate, you should look at the object in ugliness. That doesn’t mean the object is ugly. It’s not necessary that the “I” has to be ugly.

When there is anger then the meditation is love, meditate on love. Seeing the person in beauty. This is nothing to do with the beauty of the body, or like the hand patting the dog, or saying oh, my dear or honey, honey. This person’s mind is incredibly cruel and full of anger but he can say, my darling or my honey, without a loving, kind heart.

Anyway this comes later in the path of the meditation, the meditation on love, the path of great love. So when there is anger then you see the person in this terrible aspect. Nothing to do with the body. That person is an undesirable object to oneself, but a desirable object of somebody. Then meditate on love. This means remember his kindness, how one’s own happiness, perfection is dependent on him. How it came from him, that sentient being. Remember his kindness. If it is mother, so easy, because you see with the eyes, no need for logic, no reason, nothing. You just have to be aware and remember. So it is very easy to understand, remember the kindness of the mother.

When you see the kindness of the person, when you concentrate on the kindness of the person, you see the person’s beauty naturally. Naturally when you see the person is very kind, you see this is nothing to do with the body. His beauty has nothing to do with the body. I may see an ugly body, but I see the person’s beauty because he’s extremely kind. So in this way, the love comes, wishing him to have happiness. Wishing him to have happiness, all the temporal happiness, ultimate happiness. This love, which is not attachment, arises. So this love, whose nature is calm, peaceful, whose nature is not uptight mind, sincere love, if it is good hearted, then this can come to the person. That doesn’t depend on living together. It does not depend on distance.

This love’s nature is calm, peaceful, wishing the sentient beings to have happiness. This is what is missing in our mind and what we are trying to generate.

If you check up this love, and the love which we use for attachment, they are completely different. One is uptight, whether we talk about love sex, the sexual pleasures, those things, I love sex or things like that. The nature is attachment, nature is uptight, unpeaceful. The other one is completely calm, peaceful mind. The nature is completely opposite. So then like that.

If you think it’s all oneness, it becomes like this. If this is the love that normally people use—I want the material to have happiness; I want the sex to have happiness. But in Dharma, love is trying to see the sentient being in beauty, by remembering the kindness.

To control ignorance, one should meditate on dependence, the nature of the object. The absolute nature of the object, then the dependence of the object, how it is dependent, things like that.

In order to control pride, what one should do? In order to control pride, one should remember how one is ignorant. There are different types of pride. According to that you have to remember the meditation.

The most powerful meditation is impermanence and death, the most covering, the remedy. The shortcomings of the samsara, the general samsaric suffering, the outlines I have mentioned this morning, for motivation. Those are very effective, very useful for the mind.

There are different types of pride, pride of having material possessions; pride of having beautiful body; for those, yesterday’s meditation is very effective. For material possessions, try to see them as essenceless, meditate on impermanence and death, things like that. Pride in understanding Dharma. Oh, I studied Buddhadharma. Understanding the meditation, things like that. Having pride in having knowledge. Like looking from very top of mountain to down below, like that. Kind of looking down to the people, to other people who don’t know Dharma. At those times, then remember how I’m deeply ignorant in the absoluteness of the self, having no understanding, and how many of the Dharma practices I don’t know, or remember. Like this.

For the dissatisfactory mind, attachment, there are meditation techniques, like this as explained, in regards to body. Then, for material possession think like this. Also it is very good to not to get attached, if somebody gives you some material objects that one has very strong attachment to –think of it as hot coal in the fire, then the attachment suddenly is changed, transformed. Then think, if I touch this hot coal it might burn my hands, that’s all. It might cause death, but if I don’t have attachment, if I haven’t accumulated negative karmas, even if death happens that doesn’t matter, that doesn’t disturb anything, just death alone doesn’t make me be born in the lower realms. There is no cause so there is no way to experience the result.

But rising attachment on this material object, this will throw me in the realm of the suffering transmigratory beings. This is worse, this is more harmful. Remembering this is very, very effective for the mind to not get attachment. To not cling to the object. Even if the object is there, the mind is calm, the mind is peaceful. Then, happiness, suffering, think, “There is nothing to be surprised in of this. This is not the first time that I have experienced the happiness, this is not the first time that I have experienced suffering, numberless of times I have experienced these in samsara, and as long as I am in samsara, this is the nature, sometimes happiness, sometimes suffering, this is the nature, up and down. So what’s the point to get so excited, so upset, no point. It’s usual, it is common.”

However all these things at the time of death, whatever we experience, is just a dream.

I stop here.

Session 27

In regards the shortcomings of the body, the meditation is to realize the body as being in the nature of impurity. It is elaborately explained by Nagarjuna, the highly realized being Nagarjuna, in the Jewel Rosary, and also many other sutra teachings. They explain how the body is a container of thirty six elements, dirty, unclean elements. Detailed explanations like this. So those who meditate elaborately on those, how the body is in the nature of suffering, things like that, in order to control attachment, they read these scriptures and they meditate on those things by remembering those explanations. It is explained like a sack, containing the unclean elements.

When one experiences happiness or suffering, when one is unhappy, think as I explained this morning. None of this is a new experience, so therefore there is nothing to be surprised at, or shocked at. Whatever happens in the changes of life, at that time it just becomes like last night’s dream. There is nothing absolutely existent, happiness or suffering.

We seek interesting sounds, the pleasure of reputation. If you give a cup of tea to a person, and he does not say thank you, you feel incredibly upset. If this person didn’t mention his gratitude, how kind you are, how beautiful, how generous after one cup of tea, you get upset. “I offered him a cup of tea,” like you offered your heart in the cup. If he drank all the tea and ate all the cake, without even asking whether he could have it, or if he left and didn’t even say thank you, didn’t say anything, just quietly left, what would you think? How would your mind react? That’s very interesting. Again the mind would become unhappy. Again suffering. You expected, oh if I give him this delicious cake, he will tell me good things, he will tell other people…

[end of tape]

…become useless. The expectation did not happen, did not become fulfilled. If your mind is quite brave, then right in front of that person you would say, “Oh you didn’t thank me even, I gave you water, I gave you tea, how bad you are.” If the mind is not so brave then after he leaves, after he turns his back, you criticize. If there are friends around you, you criticize the person, the friend. Oh that person, that guy who came here, he asked me for a piece of chocolate, and I gave him what I had, and he didn’t even thank me. Then you gossip.

So then also you let them create negative karma together, criticizing that person, like that. So what is the difference? It’s just a word, thank you, just a word. What’s the benefit there to oneself?

It’s just a word. If one likes very much to hear thank you, you repeat it all time, like reciting the mantra, thank you. You tell yourself thank you, many times. In that word if there is really something that makes the mind happy, some kind of absolute existence there that makes the mind really happy, then it should be same thing. You recite a hundred times, with the mala, with the rosary, thank you—a hundred times, then the mind become more and more happy, greater and greater happy. So it does not depend on just the word itself, you see, it’s completely one’s own belief. You can make a whole tape full of thank you, then you use the tape recorder, how you are kind, how you are generous, all good things, whatever you like, the best words that you like, that you want to be told by other people, everything you choose and record, all day, all night. Then you check whether it makes your mind greater and greater happy. From the side of the word is there really something that makes you happy.

Even if the person complains, says bad things, how you are bad, horrible, how you look ugly, how you mind looks ugly, all these things, how you are terrible, how you are bloody, one believes in those words as bad. One believes in how you are generous, how you are good, how you beautiful, all these things, as good. That is good. We believe in this. We believe, we recognize, we believe like this. So then as you believe like this, it appears as bad to us, it appears as good to others. Then attachment arises when there is admiration, good reputation. Then one receive criticism or things like that, as one believe that is bad then it appears bad to oneself, to one’s own mind, and anger rises. Then because one believes it is bad, it becomes an undesirable object, so anger rises. Like this, how the mind becomes confused.

The Kadampa Geshes practice like this—if you like praise and admiration, you should like criticism as well. Why? Both of them are just words. The formation of words, sound.

So then saying that those are negative words. You are not good. No, negative word, no. You are no good. So there is a “no,” these letters inside of that. No. This one has NO… this one has NO, the other one doesn’t have. If that is the reason, then check. When you hear the negative word, NO, alone, you get angry. When somebody says, NO, you get angry. This is because of the combination of words related to you. If this is so, then when you tell yourself you are no good, then it should cause you to get angry, same thing. It should bother one’s own mind.

For instance, for the meditator, if I put another way, the meditator who practices thought training, , who utilizes the criticism in the path to enlightenment, then for him it is good. For him it’s not bad. For him it is, for him it is very good. That meditator who practices thought training, he likes to receive criticism as much as possible. The more he hears the criticism, the more he has the opportunity for him to practice Dharma, to practice the Mahayana thought training. So first thing, first thing, he wants these things, he wants criticism, he wants to meet this condition, so that he can train his mind in bodhicitta. That person who practices thought training, who likes to receive this, who likes to meet this condition of suffering, criticism, bad reputation, for him instead of getting angry, he the person who criticizes is extremely kind. He feels so strongly the kindness of the person, like this.

Anyway, so like this, you see, this kind of things mainly depends on how you look at it. If you look at it bad, if you believe it is bad then it appears to you bad. If you look at it good, if you look at it as good, it appears as good to oneself. For instance the example that I mentioned, the meditator, like this. When one loses the material possession, when one doesn’t gain, when one loses what one has and one doesn’t gain—actually we worry so much about material possessions. And also about friends, losing them. We have great worry in the mind believing in their absolute existence. The absolutely existent friend is lost. The money I had is lost. We believe completely that it is truly existent.

The truly existing check is lost. I had that and it’s lost. Then my truly existent girl friend is lost, lost. I had it, but now I lost it, now I don’t have, like this. Then having so much worry. There is nothing that you had, there is nothing that is lost. According to you, what you believe, how you believe. According to that, there is nothing that you had even from the beginning. You didn’t have that absolutely existent girl friend, or the check, the billion, trillion dollar check. So there is nothing to lose, because it didn’t exist from the beginning. So it’s useless worry. Then you expect to get a trillion dollars by playing this game, and you did not, so again so much worry. I would like to get it but I didn’t get it, somebody else did. So much worry about something that is not possible to get.

This person is worried about having lost the trillion dollars in the dream. However, there is no such absolutely existent friend or material object. There is nothing to lose, there is nothing to gain.

Actually, the way we cling and believe in all these things, all these hallucinations—we are worried about hallucinated objects, not gained, lost.

There are many other meditation techniques. When one is happy, if one is not careful there is danger. When one is excited, incredibly exited, one believes, “I am so happy,” having found the million dollars or met the friend. If one is not careful at those times there is danger. In the past in the very poor place, Darjeeling, there was horse racing; people got money from this game. One very poor woman got quite a lot of money and she was extremely happy, so happy, and she died right after that. Today she got thousands of rupees, she took a cloth, wrapped it up in her sari, and then the next day she died. If one is not careful in those states, if one can’t control the mind, it can cause life danger also.

In Tibet there was one person called Dawa Tragpa, a servant who worked for one family. By working for the family he got maybe one plate of barley or wheat. That is his salary. So he collected his salary, then after awhile, after one year, he collected one big sack, huge big sack. Then he was so happy, he was a poor person, a very poor person, he didn’t have anything at home, but now he has a big sack of wheat. He was so happy he went home carrying this heavy load on his back. He hung in his room, on the ceiling. He tied it with rope, and then hung it from the ceiling. So after some time, in the night, he lay down. He was planning, now I am very rich. I got one big sack of wheat. What can I do with it? Then he’s thinking, I should marry. I should have a wife. Then the wife will have a child. Then what name should be given to the child? Then for hours, for a long time, he couldn’t find any name to give the child. Then after some time it became quite late, and the moon came. The rays of the moon came through the window, and struck on the floor. Suddenly, he was aware of this moonlight in his room. He thought, “Oh, fantastic. I can call my child, Dawa, the moon, and Trakpa means famous. I will call him Dawa Takpa, moon famous.” Then he thought, “Oh, this is a fantastic name. Incredible fantastic,” and he was so happy, he could not control, so what happened is that suddenly he stood up and he picked up a stick in his hand and he danced like this, carrying the stick like this, and the stick hits the rope, by accident, and the big sack dropped on his head and he got killed. First, he didn’t have the opportunity to have a wedding. He didn’t get to eat the wheat, he didn’t get a wedding, and the child did not happen. So there is no place to give name.

I just mention this story but there are many, many times that this happened in the West, people are so excited, they can’t control the mind, then they do all kinds of things, and the person is laughing, enjoying, then suddenly he has gone.

This problem also is caused by the evil thought of the worldly Dharmas…

[end of tape]

This nature of samsara, not sure. Whether oneself also might experience this in the future or not, you can’t say.

The eight worldly Dharmas is the root from where all this problems of life arise. People make so many societies, different groups, to solve these problems; we should have such and such society, different names. They wish for one group to stop the problems. In order to work for this problem, we should organize, we should make one group, what you call society, whatever you call it, things like that. There are so many groups like this, by different names. So the purpose of those is to solve the many problems that derive from it. They try to prevent the problem.

In England, I don’t remember exactly the place, I think quite close to where Manjushri center is. I saw on the television about that person and his property, his house—there is one man in England, one very rich person, on his property he has one bodyguard to protect his life. He has one dog that bites the people that sneak away. He climbs up and he bites the person’s neck or something like this. There are hundreds of rooms, many, many rooms, but no other people. So what he does is, in all those rooms, they’re bedrooms, and each night he sleeps in different bedrooms. He doesn’t eat much food. He drinks quite a lot of number of bottles of alcohol, four or five. Doesn’t eat. He doesn’t eat much food. Not even one plate, I think … because he drinks so much that he has no interest, can’t eat food. Then he cries and feels very aggressive, very depressed, the tears coming, and he was talking about how his life is essenceless. He has all these properties, all these things, so rich, like this, and he is not happy, not happy. I am not happy. So much depressed like this, life is essenceless, and the root of his life problems—now he is bored and tired of all the things that he made business for before. He became rich from the car business. He said he is bored and not happy with his life. And he said the root of his problems was the car.

So on the weekend, on Sunday, outside with his bodyguard he buys many small toy cars and puts kerosene on them. The bodyguard holds the car and he puts the match, and sets it on fire, and each small car burns. So that is kind of destroying the root of his problem. He’s angry now, his life is not happy because of the car business that made his rich. So he thinks the root of the problem is the car. So to destroy that he is doing this.

Also one year ago, I think about three years, one of the monks gave a course in Germany. There is a center, kind of a group, managing how to relieve the depression, the aggressions to clean the mind from these things. To do not have aggression, depression, to be free from those things, they have made their own kind of organized method. Their method is that for hours everybody lines up and then they scream for hours and hours, very loud. After some time of course they get tired, exhausted. You can’t keep on shouting for days and days, you can’t. It’s impossible. So of course, after some time when you get exhausted, you feel you have lost energy, relaxed, without choice. Then they think the aggression of the mind is cleaned away. That exhaustion is recognized as cleaning away the depression, aggression.

In one place where, maybe the same group, I don’t know, the whole group takes off their clothes and they put kaka all over the body. This is the method to try to stop the root of the problems of their mind, the problems of the life, prevent the evil thought of worldly Dharma—putting kaka and then screaming for hours. It is first very difficult to recognize the basis of the problems of life, and second, those external changes do not become the remedy, do not benefit, as long as the eight worldly Dharmas are not renounced by the person.


If this life’s pleasure is not renounced, then creating negative, having difficult like, having miserable life, receiving bad reputation—all these things come. Clinging to the pleasure of this life—from this comes all these things. The person who goes bankrupt, even though he has enough to live on, enough material possessions, enough money, the mind is not satisfied, going to rob the bank. Going to steal the material possessions belonging to others, creating negative karma. Expecting, if I get, if I receive, if I gain the pleasures in this life, from the depth of the heart, deep inside the heart, expecting this, clinging to this small pleasures—these eight worldly Dharmas don’t make the person relax. They make them steal other sentient beings’ material possessions. They cause difficulty to other sentient beings. If it didn’t become successful, then one gets shot, one gets killed, or one gets tortured in prison; killing the owner of the material possessions. Creating negative karma. This evil thought of the worldly Dharma is the one that puts him in prison, captured by police, to live many years, his whole life, making a lot of material expense—all this is done by that person’s eight worldly Dharmas.

From the depth of the heart, expecting to receive the pleasures of this life. Thinking how good it is if I have this much, if I receive the pleasures of this life. This evil thought of worldly Dharma obliges the person to go to cheat other people, to tell lies to other people. It obliges the person to create various negative karmas, such as the ten non-virtuous actions. Kidnapping is very terrible. So bad. Kidnapping. It happens so much in the West, Italy, those countries, Germany. Hijacking. Those things, you see, very bad. No benefit to oneself, no benefit to others. Completely the mistakes of the shortcomings of the evil thought of the worldly Dharma, the self-cherishing thought, completely. What the use? There is no one single atom benefit himself, or others.

Nowadays even in India, because they see all these things, even the Eastern people I think they learn from the West, by watching television, hearing all these things. How clever we are, how skillful, to do things, harming other sentient beings. Anyway, it is so terrible to kidnap a person, then make a phone call to the owner of the family, the parents, the poor parents. If you don’t give me a million dollars, so much money, if you don’t pay I am going to kill your daughter. Terrible things like that. The family has to accept the person; the daughter or the son is in the hand of the other person, you see, in a place to be killed. So one has to say, I will give. Even if the family has money, he’s going to be killed by these people. If he is not killed, what happens? Even if he gets the money, he will kill that daughter. Then the parents cannot pay in the their life, even if they work, they can’t pay that much, they die and they get born as human beings again in the city, and they work hard, taking another reincarnation, they may be able to pay the money. Things like that. Otherwise it is impossible to pay that much money. Impossible in that life. These are the shortcomings of dissatisfactory mind, coming from the desire of this life, the pleasures of this life. The selfish attitude.

What comes from this—accumulating negative karma, having difficult life, so much problems, bad reputations. If one steals, then it comes in the newspaper, or on television, millions of people know about it. Millions of people watch. It shows very clearly picture of his body, however he looks. Then everybody talks about it. Complains about him. That bad reputation, everything, came from this. From the very beginning of desire for the pleasures of this life, the eight worldly Dharmas.

If this desire clinging the pleasure of this life is renounced, there is really great peace in the mind, no accumulating negative karmas. The misery of life and bad reputations, all these things, are not experienced, do not happen. The real happiness of life really starts from this. As one starts to renounce these evil thoughts of worldly Dharma, it starts from this.

So now, the conclusion is this, that we are talking about practicing Dharma, which means renouncing suffering. How? Renouncing the cause of the suffering, the problems of this life, the desire of this life, the worldly Dharma. This is actually practicing Dharma, pointing out the very essence, the root of the problems, the evil thought of Dharma. This is the essential practice.

The Kadampa geshes, those great meditators, with their experience, they advise renouncing happiness, renouncing the pleasures of this life as the real happiness. That is the real happiness. Not being attached to the surrounding, friends, things. Not being attached to the material receiving is the best, best receiving, best being.

If one renounces, if one is not attached, if one has renounced the attachment in the friends, surroundings, and helper, the surroundings come, without putting your own effort. One receives a helper naturally, due to the power of practicing Dharma.

Not being attached to material receiving is the best gain or best receiving. When one is attached, seeking the material pleasures, they are very hard to get. Very hard, very difficult to find. When this is renounced, without need for much effort, it comes naturally. Best gaining doesn’t mean material receiving. Best gaining is actually enlightenment. By renouncing attachment, material receiving, best gaining is enlightenment. The ultimate happiness is the best gaining, besides this temporal happiness.

Not desiring the reputation is the best reputation. For instance, the great yogi Milarepa, Lama Tsongkhapa, Guru Shakyamuni Buddha, all these great pundit yogis, all their good, all their amazing reputations, such that all the sentient beings who see them prostrate, and devote, and make offerings, even just seeing the name.

This good reputation, all this happened by renouncing the attachment to the reputation. All this happened from this. It happened, without purposely working, without purposely concentrating on that, working for gaining reputation, like a worldly person—spending so much in order to gain reputation, in order to get position. If you want to get a position, president or something, ordinary people how much time they spend, how much material expenses they use, trying many ways to gain a reputation. Millions and millions of dollars to get a good reputation. It is difficult to become successful.

Like this, the Kadampa geshe called Sharawa, the great meditator, with his experience, said to know the very essence of what we called Dharma is very important. Renouncing suffering, the eight worldly Dharmas, is something we should keep in our heart. Then it makes sense. When we hear, “I’m practicing Dharma,” that means what? It makes big sense, it has great meaning.

Guru Shakyamuni Buddha said in the sutra teachings, if one wishes for all happiness, renounce all the attachment. If one renounces all the attachment, one will achieve the supreme happiness, that means enlightenment. As long as one follows the attachment, one never gets satisfied. By following the Dharma wisdom, one get satisfied, and has the great happiness.

However, without talking about all this advice, the dissatisfactory mind is like drinking salt water. In India they have this salty popcorns or things like that, then because it is salty so you have to drink tea with it. So you eat this and then it is salty, and you drink one glass of tea, and again you eat, then again it makes you drink one more tea, then you eat more, and then again it makes you drink more tea. So then like this. Until you stop, it makes you drink more and more. There is no end for that.

The real happiness of the life, the real peace of mind, is renunciation. This you can really call renunciation. Then, the real renunciation of mind, then it really starts from this. Whenever you start to practice renouncing the desire of this life, the real realization of mind, real peace of mind starts. So these two things, the Dharma practice, holy Dharma, holy Dharma, renouncing evil thought Dharma, and the worldly Dharma, the works of the evil thought Dharma and renouncing that which is the holy Dharma. Those two things are completely opposite.

One person can do both but not at the same time. One action cannot become both. One action cannot become holy Dharma, cannot become worldly Dharma, the works of the evil thought Dharma. One action cannot become both. So those who are completely against, completely opposite, if one tries to do them together, one loses the holy Dharma. If one does not renounce the eight worldly Dharmas, the clinging to this life, it is difficult even to stop the rebirth in the lower realm. And difficult for the Dharma to become the path to nirvana. It’s very difficult.

So therefore there are ten practices. Those Kadampa geshes…

[end of tape]

…the lamas, the meditators. In order to practice renouncing the eight worldly Dharmas, there are the Kadampa’s ten innermost jewels. This is to be able to do pure Dharma practice, pure Dharma practice. If one wishes to have real peace of mind.

I think we stop here.

Session 28

…as pure as, as sincere as possible, your motivation of bodhicitta. Not just the motivation being possessed by the thought of renunciation of samsara, but having strong compassion to liberate the sentient beings from all the sufferings of samsara, to lead them to enlightenment. So think, I am going to listen to the profound Mahayana teaching in order to attain enlightenment for the benefit of all my kind mother sentient beings.

It is important to really recognize, to really know the real meaning of practicing Dharma, that means renouncing suffering. It doesn’t mean renouncing, not having the wish to have stomach pain or headache or pain at the knee or backside or cold, it does not mean that, it does not mean renouncing that, it doesn’t mean that kind of thought, the renunciation of suffering. What it means is, you see, renouncing the root of sufferings, the problems, the eight worldly Dharmas. That’s what it means. This can be understood through Dharma practice. By renouncing the eight worldly Dharmas, renouncing this life means that—sometimes you see in the teachings, goddesses, or lamas, or great yogis, Tilopa, Marpa, Milarepa, Lama Tsongkhapa, many of those highly realized beings, whose holy mind passed to enlightenment—you can find out from their biographies, how they have such tranquility in their mind, even though they have nothing. By renouncing the eight worldly Dharmas, what great tranquility, mind peace they have and what great achievements of the path, how quickly the realizations of the path were generated. You can find out by reading the biographies, you can understand from those. And also you can find out from Guru Shakyamuni Buddha’s life story, by reading the stories of those high lamas, those great yogis, you can find out that they didn’t have even the smell of eight worldly Dharmas, seeking reputation, seeking the happiness of this life, the surroundings, materials, all these things. They have completely renounced the desires of this life, but received everything. Having the best reputation. The perfect surroundings, materials, all these things. You can find out by reading those stories of their life.

Such as the Kadampa Geshe Ben Gurian. He said in his life story, in the advice given by the Kadampa geshes, the meditators, in regards to how to control the mind, how to practice, how to control the selfish attitude, the unsubdued mind, how they practiced and their own experiences. So this Kadampa Geshe Ben Gurian said, “When I was not practicing Dharma, when I was creating negative karma, not practicing Dharma, I had a field from which I got forty big sacks of wheat. And the people called me “forty evil.” Then in the day and night time I hung a knife, arrows, all these around my body, like thorns, tied to my body, my belt. In the daytime I went to rob to other people, in and I went to steal in the nighttime, to other families. But still it was difficult to get food. I tried like this, all the time robbing in the daytime, carrying the weapons, stealing in nighttime. But nothing, nothing.

“So now I have renounced this life, which means the eight worldly Dharmas, and during the past times, in my early life, my mouth could not find any food, but now the food cannot find my mouth.” What he is saying is actually that in early life he was seeking, he had so much attachment seeking the temporal pleasures, these objects, but had a very difficult life, could not find. Not enough, not sufficient. Now, having completely renounced this, I am practicing Dharma by completely renouncing life, the eight worldly Dharmas, and now the food cannot find my mouth. That means it is better, and so much. When I am not seeking any more, then so much came to me. People came to offer, so much that he can’t eat it. That it is how it happened, it is natural, it is natural.

One thing is because the person who is practicing Dharma itself, renouncing the unsubdued mind, that itself is the best accumulating negative karma—maybe that is true for some people. Joking. The most pure virtue is the Dharma practice. So that itself, the accumulating good karma, a person experiences the result.

So, how the great meditators, the ascetic meditators, practice, the pure Dharma practitioners, how they equalize the eight worldly Dharma, the four desirable objects, four undesirable objects—they equalize for their mind, they equalize receiving material, not receiving material, it doesn’t make any difference for the mind. They are equal. The experience of happiness, they experience of suffering, they equalize this for the mind. Whatever happens doesn’t matter. Then same thing, having bad reputation, uninteresting, distressing things, good reputation, whatever happens—it doesn’t make a difference for the mind.

And then also admiring and putting down, abusing, whatever is to happen, is equalized for his mind. If somebody abuses, somebody admires, it does not make a difference for him; he is uncontrollably excited or attached, it doesn’t make him angry, upset at the person who criticizes. This is the way, how they do. So that’s how their life has incredible great tranquility and great peace and is not up and down. Life for us, because we have not equalized this, because we are not facing the eight worldly Dharmas, the life is up and down, all the time. In the morning, the person feels so high, feeling very happy, smiling, kind of can’t stop smiling then, round in the afternoon, the person is really, completely berserk. Completely different than he looked this morning. Everyday up and down like this. Having unbalanced mind. So it is very useful to understand how the pure Dharma practitioners practice the Dharma, practicing the ten, Kadampa innermost jewels.

Even to understand this is extremely beneficial for the mind. To know how the Kadampa geshes practice Dharma. What is their very fundamental practice. To find out, to know, even just to know about this, that’s extremely beneficial for the mind.

I am just going to briefly mention who is the actual embodiment of the Buddha, Heruka, one deity called Heruka who is the embodiment of Buddha, one high lama, Pabongka Dechen Nyingpo, as he explained with his experience, it benefits for the mind.

The advice renouncing the evil thought of the worldly Dharmas, to practice these Kadampa ten jewels is the best, that should be practiced. You have to practice in order to equalize the eight worldly Dharmas. So how to equalize them? For that one must take the advice of renouncing the ten innermost jewels.

The ten inner most jewels are the four entrustments and there are detailed explanations on this in the Tibetan Tradition of Mental Development, the yellow book from Dharamsala. This has got the explanations of each practice. So, if it’s not clear what I say, probably when you read this book, maybe can understand better, because maybe the English is better.

So the four entrustment, three vajras, and receiving three things.

Four, the four entrustments. The aim of the mind entrusting to the Dharma—another way of saying, entrusting the beggar. The aim of the beggar entrusting to death. I did not finish. So the aim of the beggar entrusting to death. And the aim of the death entrusting to a dry cave, barren cave. Not a wet cave. Not like a cave that we have on the mountain, wet inside.

Better to explain each one before going to the title.

The aim of the mind, entrusting to Dharma. This time, oneself has this perfect human rebirth, eight freedoms, ten richnesses, have met the guru who shows the Dharma, who leads one in the path to enlightenment, and this perfect human rebirth is highly meaningful, difficult to find again and it does not last. Death is definite to happen and the actual time of death is uncertain, when it will occur. And at the time of death, nothing benefits. One’s own body, material possession that one has, surrounding people, how much one has, reputation, or how much one has does not benefit at the death time. It does not benefit even a small bit. What is the thing that benefits at the death time? Only Dharma. There is nothing else that can benefit at the death time. Not only the death period, but beyond that only the Dharma. That is the practice during one’s own life, with this life.

So by thinking like this, nothing benefits at death time, only Dharma. Therefore, I must practice Dharma, make complete determination, like this. This is the thing that benefits, that never gives harm, doesn’t cause one slightest suffering, beneficial for this life, and also offers happiness this life and all the future lives, all the time. This is the one that benefits at death, this most critical time. So the others are essenceless. They do not benefit. So only Dharma, I must practice, I must practice Dharma. Make the determination like this. Your main aim, your main plan is to practice Dharma. Your main concern or your main plan is to practice Dharma. That is the main thought.

For instance when there is a meeting about politicians or things like that, then somebody gives lecture. From that person’s talk I can figure out what main aim that he has in his heart, in the deep of his heart. His main aim, his goal, I can figure it out from this thought. His main aim is to destroy the whole world. To be the king of the whole world, to gain the power, to have the power over all the people on this earth. That is his main aim. For the other person, to gain power, to overpower all the people on this earth, to possess, that is his main goal. That is his main thought. Similar like this. When one makes a decision like this, your main aim, your aim of is entrusting to Dharma.


You see the question rise again. The material possessions, even one’s own body, one’s reputation, none of this benefits, the only thing is Dharma, in this life and all the future lives, at death time. Therefore I must practice Dharma.

Therefore I must practice only Dharma, because the works of this life are of no benefit to this life, or the future life. All the works of this life are meaningless work; however much one does in this life, no one can benefit at death time. The works of this life done with the eight worldly Dharmas, all those are non-virtuous, don’t benefit, instead of benefiting they give harm, this life, the future life. They give harm at death time, and much worry at the death time. One has to experience the result, the suffering, in samsara, such in the realm of the suffering transmigrator by carrying the negative karma, carrying the burden of the negative karma, by oneself. Since the work of this life can benefit nothing, so I must practice only Dharma, only Dharma.

Then the question comes, oh, if I practice only Dharma, without doing the works for the happiness of this life, then without having any conditions, the temporal needs…

[end of tape]

…worrying, or thinking like this, “Oh I might become beggar, if I only practice Dharma, without obtaining the works for the happiness of this life, the temporal needs, food and clothing, things like that, to practice Dharma.” Then this question rises, you see. So how to make determination. This mind speculating like this, you see, fear rising like this, worries coming like this. How to make the determination, to stop that

It doesn’t matter, it is okay, even if I become a beggar, it is okay. It is okay, even if I become a beggar it’s okay. By experiencing the hardships for practicing Dharma, by experiencing austerities, that is fine, that’s okay. Doesn’t matter. I am going to make myself able to practice Dharma, I am going to make myself capable to practice Dharma, even I have to wear very rag clothes, very torn clothes, poor, nothing rich, or nothing beautiful looking, good color, torn, poor clothes. Even if I get poor quality food by begging, then I am going to make myself able to practice.

Then again the question comes, either a question from your mind or somebody asks the question. Fear arising, worry coming. The first aim is the mind entrusting the Dharma. Then the second is the aim of the Dharma entrusting to beggar. Then again fear, worry coming.

Without collecting even a small material possession, food, clothing, like this, if I try to practice Dharma by being a beggar, how can I complete my life, how can I live my life? The question arises. The fears, the worries come. There is no way that I can live my life, complete my life. I might die, I might die in starvation. Or I might die without having clothes, by getting cold. I might die. The question comes.

Then the way to think, the way to make determination, the way to solve this problem, this fear, is to think like this. In many of my previous lives, I didn’t have the experience of giving up my life for practicing Dharma. I didn’t do this. Oh, it is extremely worthwhile, if I am able to die by practicing Dharma. That is good. That’s extremely good, worthwhile.

In this world the rich people, the beggars, all these people, they have to die, the same, they are all similar, they have to die, eventually they all have to die, anyway. The beggar who doesn’t have anything, rich people who have everything, they all have to die, the same. I have achieved a great work if I die by experiencing hardships, by practicing Dharma, by experiencing austerity. I have achieved a great work, great meaning, if I am able to die by experiencing the hardships for Dharma. Collecting much material possession in order to become rich, and accumulating much negative karma, it is very difficult to do the work of this life with the eight worldly Dharmas, seeking only the pleasure this life. So with this motivation, with this thought, unsubdued mind, whatever work that one does is negative karma. So with this mind collecting material possessions to gain reputation, to become rich. I achieved great meaning, great work if I am able to die by experiencing hardship, austerity for Dharma, for practicing Dharma.

The person who accumulates material possessions to become rich, let’s say he becomes extremely wealthy, successful as planned, with the motive seeking only the pleasure of this life.

He tried so hard to become rich, accumulate so many material possessions, cheating others, telling lies to other sentient beings, with various negative actions, he collected all these things. He did have a rich life, did have everything, good, perfect, big family, good apartment, then what happens? He dies. What kind of life does he have? No mind peace during the life. As he is more rich, more concerns, more worry, then material possessions. Like we see in the West, the very big family, you can watch. It looks like the poor family has more time than the rich family. Even if they don’t have so much time, it is very difficult to relax. Extremely busy. So much busy, so much worry. Then having difficulty, having much worry to lose this, to lose the business or the material possession and having difficult times and unable to develop it, to go faster than other people, than other companies. Things like that. Anyway, so many things. Those employees are complaining, the workers, the laborers, are complaining, appealing so much, unable to pay so much a month, this much confusion.

If the person can carry those material possessions with him to the future life wherever he gets reincarnated, in the asura realm, or when he gets born in the preta realm, the animal realm, or one primitive place, if he can carry it with him—but anyway, having all this, having created so much negative karma in many different ways and then at death time nothing good is done to benefit. No practice of Dharma is done, so having a very difficult, unhappy death, much fear. With all those karmas, the non-virtuous karmas that have been collected, not purified during the lifetime, so the person has to experience them in this life and after. At the death time if the person has miserliness, if the person is not practicing Dharma, if he dies with miserliness, while he is clinging, if death happens right away, like that then very difficult … it is not possible to be born in the realm of the happy transmigratory human being. The turtle example, like that.

Anyway, without talking much. So even if one becomes a beggar, it doesn’t matter. However hard it is to practice Dharma, I’ll practice Dharma. I’ll practice Dharma, even if I have to die, by experiencing austerity. Then I won’t accumulate all those negative karmas, and even if death occurs all of a sudden, because I practice Dharma by experiencing much hardship, feeling cold, hot and pain, meditating, experiencing pain by sitting, listening to teachings, then feeling cold and hot, feeling cold in the morning, in the early morning getting up, taking ordination, and then freezing and shaking—experiencing the hardships to practice Dharma. That itself becomes purification. Itself becomes purification. The negative karmas that have been collected from past times get purified. Normally it’s like this. How much one experiences, how one bears the difficulty, hardships, one should do the work of this life for negative karma, he eight worldly Dharmas that is all the difficulties, hardships that one has borne.

It’s all lost because it doesn’t have one single good result, benefit, or happiness. It doesn’t offer anything. It is completely wasted. All those hardships, difficulties, doing the work of this life, those are wasted because no one can benefit. But all the hardships, difficulties, anything that one experiences, for practice, all that is meaningful, meaningful. It always has the result of happiness. Itself is purification. In Tibet, like this, in the monastery, the monks, in nighttime, in early morning, it was very, very cold, and they have to debate for a long time outside. They wear very simple clothes, like this, no matter how cold it is. Thousands of monks do this. All those meditations, prayers, whatever experience set up by the lamas who founded the monastery; they chant these prayers for hours, hours, hours, so cold, and then debate. The hands are cracked, wounded, and the feet, and sometimes in the prayer hall there are so many monks and it’s so crowded, so hot, there is no where to relax even the feet. In the line of monks, it is so tight like this, there is nowhere to relax. They have to keep very close, short space, like this. Hours, hours, many hours like that, experiencing hardships like this for practicing Dharma, for studying Dharma, explained by the high lamas, the lineage lamas, lam-rim teachings. Purifying negative karma that one has collected in the past times to be born in cold hell, in hot hells.

Similar, similar, here, here, experience all these hardships, having much pain like this, much back pain like this, feeling so cold in the morning, freezing, even though it is difficult, so difficult, in spite of that, trying to take ordination, listen to teachings, meditate, recite. If one has been going through the hardships, feeling cold or hot or things like that, that is very good because the negative karmas that one has collected from past times are purified in this life by practicing Dharma with much hardship, with much effort.

Then also, practicing Dharma, taking ordination, keeping precepts—even if you find it very difficult to keep precepts by not eating in the afternoon, in the morning, but still you try so hard, remembering karma, remember the benefits to yourself. Remember the happiness of future lives, remembering the sentient beings, mother sentient beings—you are one person but the sentient beings are numberless. So remembering that, take ordination everyday, keep precepts, try very hard—however much you feel hunger and thirst—without collapsing your mind, try very hard to keep the precepts. This is real purification. Purifying negative karmas that have been collected in this past life to be born as a preta.

I think we stop here.

The benefits of this present life—there is nothing to compare, anyway doesn’t matter. For him this life has great peace, so happy, no confusion in mind with people, no up and down and at the death time the mind is relaxed, nothing to worry about, such as separating from the surrounding, families. Nothing to worry about separating from children, separating from the beloved, the very heart, the beloved ones, the surroundings, friends, or things like that, nothing to worry about separating from material possessions that one clings to so much, nothing to worry about. So happy. Then because one practiced pure Dharma like this in this life, no need to talk about results in the future life. The next future life, that future life, that future life, many future lives, one can find a perfect human body. One can easily achieve enlightenment.


Session 29

As you heard, the aim of the Dharma should depend on the beggar. The aim of the beggar should depend on death. This is not joining to the previous subject that I was talking about but this thought came, relating to this.

This doesn’t mean that right away you throw everything out—oh, I must become a beggar to practice Dharma—after one has lived in the West and then after all the possessions. Then you throw out all the clothing in the house or burn it or put it in the garbage and you buy ragged clothes—maybe in the West you can’t find shops selling these. Even if you have a hundred dollars and want to buy them. Anyway, then, “I am going to practice Dharma.” You burn all your money with kerosene and then hang around the city or go to the mountain alone to practice Dharma. With the birds. Maybe if there are monkeys, practice Dharma with them. Anyway, I am just joking.

This I’m sure many people did. This kind of practicing Dharma, I am sure many people did. I think here many people have done this kind of practicing Dharma. On the other hand the young people who are called hippies, do not take care so much of the body. Similar to primitive Tibetans. Not so much concern with the body. Whatever you get, you wear, you don’t shave the hairs, just keep it as it grows, as long as possible. Doesn’t matter even if it’s dirty. Who cares about it? Doesn’t matter. Then just all kind of food you get, you eat. Sometimes sleep in the mountain, sometimes, forest where there are monkeys, in sleeping bags. Sometimes in the street, by the road, in the forest. Even if it becomes twelve o’clock, around twelve day time, everybody is running around—you are still sleeping.

No definite home, this is my place, my something, nothing. Wherever one stays, whether one is in a tent or in the house in the guest house, that is sort of home. Not having a definite place. Unlike like other people who have a definite place. Even if they have different places to stay it is definite, fixed, in the seasons, winter or summer they have a definite place for the mind to hold.

Outside acting, outside looking is kind of similar to this. Outside acting is kind of quiet, not having definite place, nothing to hold on, nothing to grasp, not interested in keeping material possessions, things like that. You don’t worry so much. The outside way of looking is similar to the ascetic meditator, who basically practice the Kadampa’s advice, the ten innermost jewels.

The only thing that is not changed is in the mind. What is missing is the renunciation of the eight worldly Dharmas, that is what is missing. If there is this thought, if the mind is in this state renouncing the eight worldly Dharma, renouncing the desire of this life, then they really become pure Dharma practitioners. Inside also, a very simple mind, not having confusion. Outside looking like that. Then mentally it becomes exactly same as those pure Dharma practitioners, the ascetic meditators.

There is one Italian, who is a monk, and when he was in Italy, before he was communist. He took many drugs and then read the biography of Milarepa. He enjoyed it so much and was interested in getting the great peace that Milarepa achieved. He was very attracted to getting that. He had not met any teachings or any teachers to give him any explanations about how to practice, but in the biography there is much about renunciation. So he thought renunciation means getting rid of the material possessions. So he gave everything to his friends and other people. Then, with the book, he came to India. He didn’t have much money, and he stopped in Bombay or Madras with only forty rupees left. He put it under his pillow and went to sleep. Then that was stolen by somebody. His mind was extremely confused; he didn’t have a happy life. Actually he didn’t receive any teachings on lam-rim or the practice of the ten jewels. So there was no method that confusion. So he was not happy. Only after he received the teachings on the lam-rim from Lama, then he discovered what he did in the past time was completely in the wrong.

By now I am sure you understood, after all this talking about evil thought Dharma, the actual thing to renounce is not the object of the senses but the confused mind, the evil thought Dharma. That is the creator of these problems, this we should renounce. The interferer, the evil thought Dharma, which interferes to work for nirvana, enlightenment. This one. So this is what we should renounce.

[end of tape]

Many times in India, previous times, there have been king bodhisattvas. Then in Tibet, in certain degeneration time there were irreligious kings. Otherwise, most time the kings of Tibet, since the Buddhadharma reached Tibet—there are whole stories on that continuity. All those kings were the embodiment of Avalokiteshvara . Then in the present time His Holiness the Dalai Lama. From the very beginning, each one had amazing life stories, which cannot be comprehended by ordinary people’s mind. They have given extensive benefit to the sentient beings.

Even in present times, past times, there were bodhisattvas who have been king, who had all the properties, or much material possession, making charity, doing things like this. They become enlightened, they become higher bodhisattva, but they haven’t renounced yet, they haven’t achieved their renunciation.

So, thinking like this, making determination like this, stops the interference, the distractions which are within our mind, to continue to practice pure Dharma. In order to control the evil thought Dharma, these are the techniques, the Kadampa advice on how to practice.

The evil thought Dharma brings fears, worries in the mind. In order to stop the fear, the worry, and to be able to continuously practice pure Dharma, this is the technique.

The aim of the beggar entrusting to death. I will achieve the great meaning, even if I die by experiencing the austerities for practicing Dharma, rather than in order to become rich, collecting much negative karma and then dying. As explained before, like that, the point is what I was explaining, just before lunch time, at the end of session, then make a determination like this.

So therefore for practicing Dharma, it doesn’t matter, it is fine, it is okay. Even if I die by freezing, by feeling cold, feeling hot, by starving, it doesn’t matter, it is okay, whatever happens. Anyway I won’t renounce the Dharma. Make determination like this. To make this determination, you have to see this point that I have explained before at the end of the session. You have to think about the advantages, how great advantage there is even if one has to die by experiencing much hardship practicing Dharma. The more you understand the advantages, the more you understand, the more you see the advantages that one receives in this life, all the future lives, the benefits that you can offer to the sentient beings by practicing Dharma, the decision becomes stronger. Oh, it doesn’t matter even if I die hungry, feeling hungry, feeling cold, things like this, I will never renounce the Dharma. This decision becomes very strong.

That is the aim of the beggar. Even if one becomes beggar, then entrusting to death.

Then again, question arises. The fear, worry rises.

If oneself doesn’t have any material possession, anything, then, “I will get sick, I will become older, and even at the death time, I will experience old age and I will die. And during those times, even at the time of death I should have a servant, I must have somebody to take care of my body. To burn it or whatever. To put it in the box or carve the number of the year on a piece of stone. And somebody to arrange this box, nice box. This kind of worrying. I think even fear coming. If I don’t have something, some material possession, surrounding people, I might become old, and during those times, even after death, who will take of the body? Who takes the body out? Worry coming like this. Fear and worry coming like this. Concern like this. Again this thought is clinging to the perfections of this life.

So the technique, the Kadampa’s advice, is in order to stop this confusion, this fear, this worry, to think like this. It is not certain that I will live until I become old, sixty, seventy, eighty, one hundred, it’s not certain. Death is not certain. Also before death, getting sick, slowly dying, it is not certain to happen like this.

Doesn’t matter, doesn’t matter. Instead of seeking this, I practice Dharma, and it doesn’t matter even, even I die, even I die, whatever happens to my body, even if nobody takes care of the body, the body is left there, in the street, on the mountain. Even if my body becomes like the dog’s death place, where the water has dried up. Or the deer’s cave, alone, the body full of wounds, smells, like this. Even if it happens like this, it doesn’t matter. Without being attached to the pleasures of this life, this body, I am going to practice the true Dharma.

The meditators make the decision, without being attached at all to any pleasures of this life, this body, I am going to practice Dharma, living in the solitary place, so then like this.

There are meditators who, who generate realization of the graduated path to enlightenment, without living in the completely solitary place; living in the monastery, living in the city, like this.

Some live in a cave but have not renounced the eight worldly Dharmas. His body lives in a solitary place but his mind is not in the retreat because he has not renounced the eight worldly Dharma, he is following the eight worldly Dharmas, concerned with pleasure of this life.

The person who is in the city, physically is not in the retreat. He is not in solitary place but his mind is not possessed by the desire of this life, the eight worldly Dharmas. So who is in the retreat? The person who is in the cave, way up there on the Himalayan Mountain, the highest mountain in the world, or the person who lives right in the center of New York City, whose mind is living in the retreat away from the eight worldly Dharmas. Actually that person who is right in the middle of New York, who works there, who speaks, who communicates, who speaks, whose mind is in the retreat away from the eight worldly Dharmas.

The person who is living the cave, whose mind has not renounced the eight worldly Dharmas, is not in retreat, not in a solitary place. Physically he is away from the activity. He stopped working in the farm, he stopped working in the office. But his mind is unable to renounce eight worldly Dharma, so that person is not an ascetic meditator. Even if he doesn’t have material possessions.

So the three vajras. The first thing is the practice of the uncaptured vajra, seeking the diamond hard conviction to leave behind any discouragement. This is based on a decision that nobody can disturb, nobody can change your decision, this determination. Therefore it’s called vajra. That thought is very, so strong that nobody can change. One’s own parents, or the friends or anybody, however much they insist, do not practice Dharma, do not practice Dharma, nobody can disturb that decision. So for that reason that title “vajra” is given. That decision.

Uncaptured means—the mouse runs, the cat can’t catch it. One has renounced this life and the right worldly Dharmas, and no matter how much they ask you to delay, not practice now, you don’t listen, don’t delay, don’t change the mind without any worries of separating from them or attachment. Making the decision, I must, I must practice, I must practice the pure Dharma.

Thinking, “Without letting myself under the control of the evil thought Dharma, I must practice pure Dharma.” Make the determination like this. If one is going to a solitary place to make retreat or to meditate then make the decision like this. However much they ask to not practice, to not practice Dharma, understand the benefit, which has more benefit.

You might have heard the great bodhisattva Atisha’s life story. He was born as a prince in India. His family had great population and incredible power. In the palace there were twenty-five with gold roofs. His parents wanted his to take the place of the King, and they tried to convince his so many times to take the rank of king and have a married life. They collected all the beautiful girls in the country and made a party. They tried so hard, but nothing could change his mind at all. It was really like a vajra. He told his parents, “For me, wearing expensive brocade clothes and wearing rags is the same. Eating delicious food and drinking blood and pus and eating dog meat is the same. Having a princess and having a mara girl, no difference.”

This is the practice of the uncaptured vajra.

The second is living after the shameless vajra. When the person has renounced this life, and becomes a beggar, the question arises, “I will become a beggar, and not have a good place, and have no clothes to wear, and others will see me on the street. They will complain I am poor looking, and lazy, and foolish.”

Even if other people say this, or if there is this fear, the Kadampa advice is it doesn’t matter what they say. Even if they criticize you the worst, even if they praise and say you are a great yogi, or a devil—no difference. If I don’t follow their idea of gaining pleasure in this life, I will lose this fear. Following their ideas is a source of shortcomings. If I listen, and do the works of this life, I will create negative karma. This is distraction from my Dharma practice. I will concentrate on pure Dharma practice, without following the wrong idea. This is what it means to live after the shameless vajra.

Shameless means whatever they say, or criticize, you do not get controlled by them. If you listen and are attracted, you go under the control of the evil thought Dharma and don’t get done…

[end of tape]

…whether the body lives in a solitary place or not, in the cave or something, away from city or away from the country, stopped working, stopped the communication with people, kind of living in a solitary place. Not talking to people, not seeing people, like many of those meditators who live in the cave. Whether one lives like this or not, however, the most important thing is the mind living in solitude. The mind living in the cave, the mind living in the mind, whether body lives in the cave or not. Then, renounce all the meaningless worldly works. As I mentioned yesterday, though it is possible that still some people don’t understand, the works of evil thought Dharma, renounce completely. Then try to complete the attainments of the path, the state of, state of omniscient mind. The full enlightenment that can be received in this life. If one is able to do this, then one can achieve the state of omniscient mind in this life. Without need to wait for another life to achieve enlightenment, this can be achieved even within this life.

So one doesn’t have to worry, to be scared, doesn’t have to worry about dying by famine, not finding food, dying of starvation, like that. Even if one becomes a beggar, renouncing the work of evil thought Dharma, practicing Dharma like this, one doesn’t have to be scared. Why? Guru Shakyamuni Buddha himself dedicated the merits for his followers, for their means of living. Those who live in pure Dharma practice, he has dedicated the merit for their means living.

Guru Shakyamuni Buddha said in the sutra teaching, called Compassion White Lotus, when he was generating the bodhicitta, he prayed for the sake of sentient beings, “The followers who enter in my teachings, the Buddhadharma, and wear even four inches of robe, this Dharma practitioner, if he doesn’t get food then my having achieved buddhahood has betrayed the sentient beings, so may I not receive enlightenment.”

Then also Guru Shakyamuni Buddha himself predicted that in the world in the future, an incredible great famine will happen on the earth, and they will have to make business with jewels for food. They will have to sell that many pearls in order to get that much flour. And even in such a time the pure Dharma practitioners, the followers of Guru Shakyamuni Buddha, will not become poor, empty of food. Even though the rest of the people on the earth will have to cultivate and plough such a tiny field, the size of a nail, “My followers who are living in the renounced life, who are pure Dharma practitioners, won’t be devoid of means of living.”

Also, one of the Kadampa geshes, the great meditator, said he had never seen a meditator die of feeling cold, of starving, and it wouldn’t be heard of in the future. Actually there is not one single story like this anywhere, in India, Tibet, anywhere, that a great, pure Dharma practitioner died of starvation, or cold, or difficulty in means of living. Many of the learned geshes, in the monasteries, if you ask them how do you lead life when you are practicing Dharma, you will find amazing stories. How much hardship they went through, bearing the difficulties of cold, hot, very little food—sometimes even no solid food to eat, just tsampa, barley flour that they mix with tea in a bowl. The rich way of eating is with salt and butter. Many of the monks didn’t even have butter tea. Lunch, dinner, all the same, whole day and night studying Buddhadharma, taking teachings, studying, thinking, debating. This is just the monks in the monastery, not talking about those in the caves.

After a few years because of this their knowledge of Dharma develops. In later life, no difficulties in means of living. So much receiving even the temporal needs. Sometimes kind of bored of having so much around.

This is for a pure Dharma practitioner, no difficulty. But for a person who is trying to practice, but didn’t make the complete determination, the complete decision in the heart to renounce the eight worldly Dharmas, that person is practicing Dharma on the surface. For that person there are many problems for his mind. So the conclusion is there are no stories of pure Dharma practitioners who died by starvation and things like that. Among, worldly people who only do the work of this life, there are numberless people who have died like this.

Sorry, I missed the peepee break.

If you have saved, you can do outside, after session, all together.

There is not much time anyway, so like this.

If you want to destroy this evil thought of worldly Dharma, the quickest, the quickest, the most powerful remedy, method is meditating on impermanence and death. Reflect on impermanence and death, this is the most quick, instant, powerful remedy, especially to destroy the evil thought of worldly Dharma. This is the essential method, the essence of Dharma, to transform the mind in Dharma. To make the mind pure. I will mention as I go briefly through the outline—the highly useful, the perfect human rebirth which is difficult to find again, will it last forever, without experiencing death? That is not possible. There is no story of somebody who was born and never died. There is not one story. If there were something then the original human beings who lived on this earth should be existing even now.

Why is it so important to remember death? To think of impermanence, death? After the death, even the body is completely destroyed. Even if it is not existing, the mind does not stop. Doesn’t cease. It continues. It continues. What it will do, what mind, what consciousness, what happens with it? What it does, what happens with it? This consciousness takes another body. What body it will take? That is according to the action, the karma, that has been accumulated by the person. That depends on the karmas that have been accumulated by oneself. If one has accumulated stronger non-virtuous action, then the consciousness will take the body of the suffering transmigratory being. And then if one has collected the good karma, the consciousness will take the body of the happy transmigratory being, either a human being, sura, asura, like that. So, one get gets reincarnated like this. If the consciousness ceases at the death time, then there is nothing, no base, no aggregates, no base to continue to the future life. No aggregates that take another body. There is no connection. So in that way the self does not reincarnate.

I am sure you’ve heard many times, nowadays, say in America or those countries, many people have written their experiences about reincarnation. I brought one book last year, from California containing the experience of one lady. I don’t remember her name, this book was in the library, I left it there. She was talking about her experiences, that she died and her consciousness was able to see her body. All her relatives came in the house, crying and worrying so much. She was explaining the whole situation that happened after she died. She felt that she did not finish her work, I don’t know what work, I don’t remember. Anyway, she entered back in the body and then she said, at the end of the book, “Now I have, from this experience, I have discovered there is another life after this life. This is not the only one. Not I have realized I have wasted my whole life, working only for this life. Not making any preparation for this future coming life.” How she feels upset, having wasted the life, completely Very interesting. Very, very interesting. Just like talking lam-rim. Even very useful for my mind. For my mind that doesn’t have any smell of Dharma, very effective, very useful. Like this. I think there are many people who have these experiences.

I saw a small film. I don’t think it’s television, I think it’s a small film somebody has shown, about Sai Baba. This one guy he made some films about him and then some other medium in California. He made some films of the medium speaking. In one film the husband died, was born as this kind of spirit, and entered the medium’s body and was talking to the family. Talking to the wife, all the mistakes that the wife did. Oh, at time, you didn’t take care of me, you didn’t give me this, it hurt me very much—all kinds of things. All the difficulties that they had during their life together. This spirit was talking. Mentioned everything. And then because it was very accurate, the wife could not say, “No, I didn’t do.” The wife was so embarrassed. She was terribly embarrassed and she was crying. Each time when the spirit was talking, oh, you remember, one time you did like this, like this. You remember? Or one time you harmed me like this. Each time when the spirit asked, the spirit was saying some faults, the mistakes of the wife, you did this, and that. And she was, “Oh, oh” again crying, again crying. Each time when she heard her mistakes.

Anyway, sometimes it is possible also by hypnotizing. Sometimes, a certain person has the karma to remember past lives; not all but certain things. How he died, what was his previous life, how he was killed by another person and the big shock, like that. For some people, it is possible to remember. There are some people doing this I think with a young son, one boy, who was remembering how he killed his father or something like that. He did some horrible thing and somehow he remembered this he was kind of crying, feeling so upset.

[end of tape]

...many things like this. Then not finding attraction, and praise. Thinking of these as distractions, making the decision continuously to do the pure Dharma practice.

Then the next one, keeping the transcendental wisdom vajra with oneself.

There are so many funny stories in Tibet. First a person decides to make retreat in a solitary place; a long retreat, many years, maybe the whole life in a cave, to renounce his life. Then he goes into the cave, and other people, benefactors or friends, give their own ideas and advice. The person’s mind is not so strong, so he is not successful. He is unable to continue. Then when he comes down into the village, the work of this life is more and more expanded. The practice of Dharma is merely the mind determination. Keeping the transcendental wisdom vajra with oneself is making this determination. All the works of this life are essenceless. With this unshakable thought of Dharma, you spend your life, equalizing life and Dharma practice. This means if I life ten years, then I practice Dharma for ten years. So they become equal. Not that life is longer and practicing Dharma is shorter. Making the determination to do this until death.

Then there are three things—the first is the expulsion from the rank of the human beings. Expulsion from the rank of the worldly people. One who renounces the eight worldly Dharmas, renounces this life, does not find any attraction in the perfection of this life. There is nothing interesting for him and so he doesn’t work for that, doesn’t see the perfections this life. All the rest of all the other people in the country, the higher people, the king, the lower people, they all work for the perfection of this life. So, you see, first of all, this person’s way of thinking and the other people’s way of thinking is completely opposite. The actions are completely opposite. His actions are done only for the benefit of the happiness beyond this life. To obtain happiness for other sentient beings. Those other people in the country, their actions are done only for the happiness of this life. Completely opposite. Complete opposite. So in that way he’s not in that line, he’s not in that rank. This person who has renounced the evil thought of worldly Dharma, he’s not in that group. Those other people, higher, lower, they don’t agree with the work what he is doing. They can’t understand his work, his way of thinking.

So this person, this pure Dharma practitioner, by this nature of living, he’s expelled from the ranks of those worldly people.

If one action, if one’s way of thinking doesn’t become different from the common people, who are only concerned for this life and work only for this life, it doesn’t become Dharma. If it becomes the same all the time then it doesn’t become Dharma. There are only two things left to finish this, the ten innermost jewel.

Reaching the ranks of dogs and attaining the Buddhahood state, attaining the ranks of the Buddha. Just those two left.

However, in the courses, this wasn’t explained. Only in the sixth course … I don’t remember exactly, whether I explained all. Unless some books on this might have it, but I think this part wasn’t explained before.

So, generally the reason that I am explaining these things, is because one who wishes to practice these things, wishes to do pure Dharma practice, renounce the evil thought of worldly Dharma, needs the Kadampa’s advice very, very much. So important, this foundation. Even if we can’t practice like this, having the understanding of this is very important, very useful for the mind, especially when the mind is lazy to practice Dharma, in great confusion. Therefore I am trying to explain the ten innermost jewels.

The Kadampa’s advice on the ten innermost jewels, in order to equalize the eight worldly Dharmas, the four desirable, the four undesirable. To renounce this life, which means to renounce the evil thought of worldly Dharma. If one understand this, the great yogis, meditators, the pure Dharma practitioners who experience and generate the graduated path to enlightenment, this is basic, like money is the most important thing, your whole life kind of depends on it. Like, in the world, ordinary people see this is the most important thing. The ten innermost jewels is like this for Dharma practitioners. This has been the main tool, the basic tool to stop the difficulties of the life. To cut off the confusion, difficulties of the life.

So therefore this is mind practice. As I mentioned yesterday, mind practice. It’s not to practice with only with the body, only with the speech. This practice is mind practice. Mainly to practice by one’s own mind. The whole thing is determination. Just a matter of the mind making a decision, that’s all. That’s all, the whole thing is that. That’s the essence.

One decision causes problems; one decision cuts off problems. This is the essence of this practice. So mind only, mainly mind practice. This is the utmost needed practice. Especially for those who do the renunciation ordination. If this practice is missing then very difficult, even if one take the 300 precepts, or the thirty-six precepts, the bodhisattva precepts, Vajrayana precepts—it is very difficult, very difficult to live in the ordination of renunciation. Very difficult if this practice is missing.

If this practice is missing then one’s own Dharma practice becomes very difficult, because the eight worldly Dharmas become so strong.

So one makes the decision to live the life in this way, to spend the life in the practice of this. Then if one keeps this practice, the ten innermost jewels, in the heart, if continuously one practices, one is able to, without hindrances, live in the ordination renunciation—if one is a monk, as a pure monk, if one is nun, as a pure nun.

The last, reaching the rank of the dog. The dog who is kept outside is very quiet, but has a bad reputation. How this dog is so harmful, everyone complains about the dog. For him it’s not like having criticism,. Then how poor food, clothing—whatever comes, he bears the difficulty. Just leave, just stay with that family, sometimes they give clothes to the dog. Especially, I think, Western people do, I think it’s very nice—to keep from the cold. Feeling much concern for the animal. It’s extremely good.

However, whatever the family gives, little food or poor quality food, he just stays there, bearing the difficulty, as he can. So like that the Dharma practitioner—not like this, when one is in a comfortable place, when one has found a comfortable place, room, then do much meditation, practice Dharma—when the mind is happy practice Dharma, do something. When one finds good food, when one has enough money, when one has good conditions, then practice Dharma.

Then when one has finished the money, when one ran out of money, just living on apples or sandwiches, like many people have experienced living in New York, and no comfortable place, in a torn house, full of spiders in every corner, or in prison, a terrible place, no heater, cold ground, can’t go outside for sunshine…

When one finds difficulties in the life like this, one completely forgets Dharma, the Dharma is completely given up. For months and months, years and years, having a very weak mind, very weak mind. Thinking, I can’t do my meditation, I can’t do my practice, I have this difficulty, that difficulty, I have this difficulty, so one practices Dharma only very rarely, only when one has a comfortable life.

In that way it is very difficult to do really well Dharma practice, if the mind is not strong; in that way you can’t gain realization of the path to enlightenment.

By understanding, by remembering the great advantages, the infinite advantages, by experiencing the hardships of practicing Dharma, as I mentioned yesterday, all this becomes great purification. All the great advantages, all the good result that one will achieve by experiencing hardships for Dharma practice. Remember Guru Shakyamuni Buddha, who spent years living in austerity.

Then remember those former great yogis, pundits, the Tibetan lamas, the great yogi like Milarepa, how all of them who have achieved enlightenment have gone through much hardship actualizing the path. They did not practice Dharma comfortably. Without need to experience any hardship, all the time having a comfortable life, an extremely luxurious life, always eating delicious food, the best clothes, living in the most comfortable place—they did not achieve enlightenment living life like this. If you have less, remember this. This is very beneficial for the mind, when one finding difficulty to practice Dharma. Remember all the advantages, experience the happiness of the practicing Dharma. Not having concern for food, clothing, reputation. Whatever food, clothing you get, just accept that, take the loss. How much difficulty arises, feeling hunger, thirst, you bear the difficulties for practicing Dharma. So this is what it means, reaching the rank of the dog. However much the dog life difficult, living in that family, even some days even he doesn’t get food, he still hangs around the family. Trying to protect. Whatever hardship arises, continue to practice Dharma, without changing the mind.

Then the last … attaining the ranks of the divine beings. This means attaining the Buddhahood state.

[end of tape]

…and for just common people, really didn’t upset. So he remembered this and was crying, so upset.

However the consciousness continues by individual karma it is definite either to be born in the realm of the suffering transmigratory being or in the realm of the happy transmigratory, like this. And so in this life, since one has been reincarnated like this, in different realms due to karma, in order to obtain happiness for the future life, to have a good rebirth, in this life one should accumulate that karma. One should practice Dharma by reflecting on impermanence and death. So by reflecting on impermanence and death, one is able to continuously practice Dharma. Not just one hour, not just one day, not just one month, not just only during the retreat—but continuous practice of Dharma wherever one is. So there is great advantage to meditating on this.


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