Door to Satisfaction (Audio and Unedited Transcript)

By Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche
Vajrayana Institute, Sydney 2006 (Archive #1580)

These teachings were given at Vajrayana Institute, Sydney, Australia in June 2006. The first file in the series is a recording of an address Rinpoche gave at the opening of their new building in which he talks about the benefits of Dharma centers.

[Note that these teachings are preceded by those given in 1990, which form the basis of Rinpoche's book The Door to Satisfaction.]

Lama Zopa Rinpoche at Root Institute, Bodhgaya, 2000. Photo: Brian Halterman.
Thursday June 8th: Center Opening Talk

So first I would like to, from the bottom of my heart, to thank very much His Holiness’s representative, Atisha, and for here participating in the opening of the Vajrayana Center. And then I would like also to thank here Geshe-la and all the Sangha members, then all my brothers and sisters, all the rest here.

So, I’m extremely happy that this accomplishment of Vajrayana Center, that it has its own place, that doesn’t have to move around and around like a clock. Like a clock in the city. I’m joking! Anyway, so here, so I would like to just mention a few things.

So such this meditation center is antidote, what I think is, war in this world, antidote to famine, disease, tortures, poverty, and even the earthquakes, and danger of water, fire, there’s always the danger of fire, quite often, so many land get burned by fire or damage for the houses, for the people, so this antidote, even what’s called “natural disaster” but it’s not natural because it is a production of the people who experience the problem, came from their negative, it came from their mistaken way of thinking, the negative thoughts and negative actions, so those things, unrighteous actions, mistaken way of thinking, those negative thoughts. All those are productions of the self-cherishing thought and the ignorance, not knowing the ultimate nature of the self, I, and aggregates and so forth, the root of all the suffering, the ignorance. Then, ignorance not knowing what is right to practice, beneficial and brings happiness to oneself and to others, and harm, and wrong things that which harm to oneself, to others, so not knowing what is right and wrong. Those ignorance, as well as anger and attachment. So all these things are productions of, or consequences, effects of negative actions and negative thoughts.

So I think such as this meditation center is antidote to all those things that’s happening one after another in this world. So, why it’s antidote to all those? So, I just made a brief explanation, introduction, so here, the basis subject what is taught is karma, cause and effect. So it teaches, it gives wisdom, opens the wisdom eye to the sentient beings, to know what is right, that is brings happiness to oneself and to others, and wrong, which has wrong effect, negative effect, suffering to oneself and to others. So, the cause and effect, the subject of karma, so that is the basic teaching of the Omniscient One, Buddha. So then the other, that’s the very important, the body of the teaching.

And then the other one is compassion. Here the Buddhadharma is differentiated from others by compassion, not only compassion for poor people, compassion to everyone, anybody who’s, any human being whose mind is obscured, whether poor or wealthy or rich, anyone whose mind is obscured and suffering, so compassion to everybody. Compassion to all the animals. Not only that, there are many other types of sentient beings that we’re not aware, that we don’t see at this time, all those other sentient beings, suras, asuras, those worldly gods who are living on the different planets and as well as hell beings, hungry ghosts, animals, so compassion to everyone whose mind is obscured and who are suffering. So here, the Buddhadharma is differentiated by that.

So therefore, here one main subject what it teach, one essential subject of Buddhism here what it teaches is, to sentient beings, is compassion towards sentient beings, towards all others, without discrimination, nationality or whatever, different colors or all these things, without any discrimination. So therefore, by learning, even attending two days’ teaching, two days course at the Center, the person, the basic understanding what they get is this karma, the cause and effect, depending on what kind of attitude and action then what kind of effect, happiness or suffering, you get, as a consequence from your action, the motivation. So learning about that is the most important thing. So, then the compassion. So therefore, even that person cannot do much practice, so many prayers and mantras, and this and that, so many meditations, even the person cannot do all these things, reciting prayers and so forth, but at least that person becomes cautious and careful, the person stops fishing or the person stops stepping over the ants or worms that you see in the road, in the house, since from that time, since from hearing the, learning Buddhadharma, you stop stepping over them, so that’s, I find, I feel that’s incredible success of the center, when one person comes to learn Dharma, meditation, in the Center, since from that time the person stops harming others, so those ants, worms, in the road, on the floor, you stop stepping over and stop fishing, harming others. So that’s incredible peace and happiness, the absence of that harm.

And even that person doesn’t do any action to benefit to others but just stop harming others, that’s incredible, that’s great contribution for the world peace. You start world peace from your family or from the sentient beings who are around you, you stop giving harm. From there then you are able to offer world peace; otherwise, not. So then, by practicing compassion, the very essence of the Tibetan Mahayana Buddhism, the compassion towards sentient beings, so then by practicing compassion, that person stops giving harm other sentient beings, who are numberless. So that means, absence of all those harms towards numberless sentient beings is peace and happiness what they receive from that person, from that student. So then, so that’s incredible. That’s real practical world peace, contribution to the world peace, really. This is not just this one tiny world, not that one. For all the sentient beings who are even in other universes, because if your mind is trained in this life, compassion, then there’s a continuity in next lives. So if you think of life to life, so with compassion you don’t harm others and as you develop more you benefit other sentient beings, who are devoid of happiness, who are suffering. So therefore, there is benefit, that person brings benefit, peace, if you think of life to life, to all sentient beings.

So now here, so because of compassion, by developing compassion, compassion is like the fuel for airplanes, rocket or the cars, that carries people where they wish to be, so even going to the moon, anyway, the rocket, anyway, just an example. So the compassion, I think, persuades, first of all, our real purpose of life is to benefit other sentient beings. So, first thing benefit to other sentient beings is the happiness of this life, to others, whatever one can. Whatever one can, benefit other sentient beings, help other sentient beings, cause happiness of this life. Now even more important benefit other sentient beings that is causing the happiness in all the coming lives. So, of course, that is through Dharma, by educating other sentient beings, by educating, by introducing the, by giving the Dharma wisdom eye, opening the Dharma wisdom eye, understanding karma, to the sentient beings, then this way they know what they should practice, what they should prepare to achieve happiness of all the coming future lives. So educating other sentient beings with Dharma. So then you are able to cause, because compassion persuades you to learn Dharma and then to educate others to achieve happiness in all their coming future lives.

Then, not only that, even greater, even more important benefit for other sentient beings, that compassion persuades the person to learn Dharma, the path, four noble truths, that to learn about suffering and cause of suffering, and the path that which makes possible to cease all the suffering and causes. So, that person by persuading the compassion then cause other sentient beings to bring to the end of the suffering, the oceans of suffering of samsara.

Then even more important to other sentient beings, that person’s compassion persuades that person to learn the whole Mahayana path to enlightenment, even to cease not only the disturbing-thought, not only the obscuring disturbing-thought negative attitude, those gross defilements, but to cease even the subtle defilements and to achieve the state of omniscient mind. It brings, to bring the sentient beings in the peerless happiness, oneself to achieve that.

So then, so not only that, then also with compassion persuades that, you feel unbearable that, how the sentient beings are suffering in samsara, being obscured. Feel so unbearable and you want to liberate them from the oceans of samsaric suffering and causes quicker and bring them to enlightenment quicker, so then for that reason there’s need to practice, learn about the Tibetan Mahayana Buddhism, the secret mantra, Vajrayana. So I think, to bring sentient beings to enlightenment quickly, then for that then oneself to achieve enlightenment quickly.

So I think, so by developing compassion, that’s like fuel and that makes you to learn all this and to actualize all these paths and to cause happiness, all this benefit, highest benefit is bringing the sentient beings to enlightenment. So I think, so all this what that one person, one sentient being, learning Dharma from this Center, then how many, that one person how incredible, all these different levels of benefit, happiness, can cause to numberless sentient beings. That’s amazing! So all this, what each person can benefit so many sentient beings, temporary and ultimate happiness, from this, by coming to learn Dharma from the Center, that is the benefit, including teacher, director, secretary, every staff of the Center, this is what you’re offering benefit to all the sentient beings. Through working together, because you alone, if you’re alone cannot do all this extensive benefit to sentient beings. By joining as a group, then together you’re able to, including teacher, translator, however, all the members of the Center together working then each person is able to offer extensive benefit to the sentient beings. So therefore, this is the incomparable benefiting sentient beings by Dharma, through Dharma or by Dharma. That is the deepest benefit, like limitless skies. So please to, not only, not always we think of problems of the Center [RL], there’s like sun shining there’s so much, like sun shining, all these skies of benefits which you’re offering. If you don’t think all that what you’re doing, then think of only the problems [RL], all the time only [RL], so it’s like you’re doing so many good thinks but you only think of your own mistakes, only that, and you don’t think of all your good qualities, so many good qualities you have, then you think only of that one mistake, something, then you see yourself totally black. You see nothing except problems. So it shouldn’t be like that. Should have very wide view, so that you can enjoy the life, with great joyfulness, happiness, with happy mind.

Then, so, here, then you teach not just only unmistaken path or method to happiness but path to liberation from samsara, so that is, to finish, to end the whole entire suffering of samsara, this to end, so teaching that path, the unmistaken path to liberation. Then not only that, the Tibetan Mahayana Buddhism that’s complete, not just only that then the Paramitayana Mahayana path, the sutra, then the Mahayana secret mantra, Vajrayana path, so to enlighten sentient beings quickly. So there’s skies of benefit that sentient beings receive from the Center.

Then, I think, so one thing is that, the sufferings do not come from outside. Sufferings, problems of life, came from the mind, came from within the sentient beings, came from the impure mind, the mistaken thoughts. So therefore, externally how much it’s developed can’t really stop the problems in the life, externally how much developed, especially suffering of mind, dissatisfaction, so forth, cannot eliminate or cannot be stopped. So therefore, the inner method, the spiritual path, the path that which ceases the cause of the suffering, the obscuring, disturbing negative attitudes and its action, karma, then cause of the delusions, the negative imprints, so need to learn about the path which removes the seed of delusions. So without removing the seed of delusion, the delusion can rise again and again. So for example, even one is born in the world of form, in the formless, where there’s no, temporarily there’s no suffering pain and suffering of, in the formless realm there’s no even suffering of change. But there’s pervasive compounding suffering, their aggregates which is nature of suffering because caused by karma and delusions, the pervasive suffering, and contaminated seed of delusions because of that. So again when the duration to be there, when this finishes then again reincarnate even in the lower realms, so again. So we have been in those realms, form and formless realms, numberless times. So even though they have total detachment to desire realm or even formless realm beings, total detachment to, renunciation to even the form realm pleasure, but didn’t achieve the renunciation to see the very, the fourth, formless realm there’s four levels, the fourth one is called samsara, so there’s no higher realm to compare to, where there’s more peace, better, so then unable to see the Tip of Samsara, the fourth one, from the formless realm, that’s the nature of suffering, so again when that duration of time being there finishes then again they have to reincarnate as before, one of the six realms, continuously. So until they generate renunciation of samsara, including the Tip of the Samsara, all the samsaric realms, and have wisdom directly perceiving emptiness, so like that. So therefore why, that’s the purpose why there’s need meditation center, especially teaching the whole entire Tibetan Buddhism.

So this is the purpose or need of the center, how it’s so emergency to the sentient beings to receive all this education and practice and to have attainment. So therefore, I would like to, so yeah, before mentioning, before thanking, then I would like to say, there’s so much violence in this world, increasing, so many countries, so many suicide bombings, killing, so much violence, so here the education of compassion become, the karma and the education of compassion become the most important solution for that. So this is what such this center offers. And this is fulfilling, offering service to His Holiness, Buddha of Compassion, who is the one object of refuge of us, all sentient beings, and source of happiness of all sentient beings, as I often say. So offering service, like that. And so therefore, I would like, the benefit of our work is like limitless sky, for sentient beings. So therefore, and also it’s continuing service to fulfill Lama’s wishes, Lama, who is kinder than all the three-time buddhas, who founded this organization, so I would like to thank very much.