Taking Care of the Mind

By Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche
Istituto Lama Tzong Khapa, Pomaia, Italy (Archive #1961)

Lama Zopa Rinpoche advises the importance of protecting our mind from anger, attachment and ignorance in this teaching given at Istituto Lama Tzong Khapa, Pomaia, Italy, on June 28, 2014. Lightly edited by Sandra Smith.

Lama Zopa Rinpoche doing Lama Chöpa puja at Istituto Lama Tzong Khapa, Pomaia, Italy, June 2014. Photo: Piero Sirianni.
Mind is the creator

For ordinary people like myself, tong pa nyi, emptiness only, shunyata, it is like it doesn’t exist. There is the hallucination of true existence, so things appear as real from their own side. That which never happened from the very beginning appears as real from its own side. If I put our experience in ordinary terms that we often use, I would say things appear as real, but they have never been that way even for a second.

Even for one second that this is real has never been there. But we believe it is real, one hundred percent. There’s no doubt; we believe it exists but what really exists is that things are existing in mere name. What exists is existing in mere name and because of that, things do not exist from their own side.

This, just like myself, doesn’t [truly] exist. That which exists doesn’t [truly exist]. That which doesn’t exist, we believe a hundred percent it exists, day and night, from birth until death, from morning until night, from beginningless rebirths up to now. From beginningless rebirths we have had the hallucinating mind; we created the hallucinating mind. It was not created by God; we created the hallucinating mind.

If God created this then we would have to blame God, you understand? It’s not created by God or by Buddha, we created it. The mind produces problems and we experience the problems. Relationship or family problems, business problems, anything, disease, all this came from our mind. We created it all, not God. Of course, we have to respect the people who benefit from that belief, who can’t accept any other belief, who think that God punished them.

As His Holiness says, we create and we follow that mind. If we think in an unskillful way, a wrong way, then a problem appears and we see a problem. But if we think in a different way, we don’t see a problem. There’s no appearance of a problem; we don’t see problems in our life. So it’s totally up to us which way we think.

In San Francisco, America, there was a large photo of His Holiness Dalai Lama on the road. In San Francisco on the street, in that one place, there was a large photo that we commonly saw that said, “Think differently.” Yes, if we think differently, there’s no problem in our life. Also our disease can be cured by our positive thinking, by thinking in a better way. If we know how to think, it can heal our disease, cancer, so forth. We can become the doctor to heal the disease in our mind, a very good doctor.

So we can be guru, our own teacher. Our mind is like the disciple and we are the teacher taking care, looking after our mind. We can be like the father or mother; our mind is like the child and we take care of it. Like the police, we can watch our mind. What do you say? Criminal? Not criminal. Well, the police watch [for criminals], so our mind is like the police, always watching. It’s very good to think in that way.

In San Francisco, there is a big photo of His Holiness on the road, in the street. It says, “Think differently.” If we can do that, then we will have no problems in the life. There’s no appearance of problems and we don’t see problems. But if we don’t know how to think differently or we don’t know how to think in better way, a skillful way, a correct way, a positive way, then we think only in a negative way and our whole life is just problems, one after another. So we’re the main creator.

We can’t see this mind—it’s formless, shapeless, colorless. The body has color, shape, form, but the mind doesn’t—it’s formless, shapeless, colorless. But it is the creator of the heaviest suffering, what is called “hell.” It’s also the creator of the highest happiness, peerless happiness, sang gye, the total elimination of obscurations and completion of all the realizations. Our mind is the creator of that.

So we can think a better way. Yes, our mind can create the peerless happiness, full enlightenment, sang gye. Our mind is the creator of samsara, as well as the creator of the cessation of samsara, nirvana, the blissful state of peace for oneself. The mind is the creator. As well as being the creator of samsara, our mind is the creator of nirvana. Our mind is also the creator of our day-to-day life happiness, as well as being the creator of our day-to-day life problems. It depends on every hour, every minute, every second thinking in the correct way, which brings happiness to ourselves and to others, and does not bring harm to ourselves and to others.

Therefore, we learn meditation. Therefore, we learn Dharma. That’s the whole reason. We have freedom in our hands, complete freedom. Our life in our hands. It’s up to our mind—complete freedom is in our hands; it’s up to us.

Subdue one’s own mind

As far as Buddhism is concerned, it’s like this. The reality of life as far as the Buddha’s teachings are concerned is like this. It’s in our hands and it depends on how we use our mind.

We recited already:


Do not commit any unwholesome actions.
Engage in perfect, wholesome actions.
Subdue one’s own mind.
This is the teaching of the Buddha.

Kyabje Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche, one of my gurus—you may have seen or received teachings from him in the past— said these four lines contain the four noble truths: true suffering, the true cause of suffering, the true cessation of suffering and the true path.

“Do not commit unwholesome actions / Engage in perfect, wholesome actions / Subdue one’s own mind.” The essence of Buddhism is to subdue one’s own mind—it’s the most important advice. “Subdue one’s own mind / This is the teaching of the Buddha.”

I think, “Subdue one’s own mind / This is the teaching of the Buddha” is advice particularly found in Buddhism, especially in Buddhism. “Subdue one’s own mind” because, as I mentioned before, the creator of the most frightening [sufferings], even in the paintings about hell, even just the hell is very frightening, so the creator of the bad [things] is the mind, and the creator of peerless happiness, ultimate happiness—the state of total elimination of obscurations and completion of all the realizations—is our mind. Samsara, nirvana, the creator is our mind. Every day, in day-to-day life, our happiness, our problems, the creator is our mind. So Buddha explained “Subdue one’s own mind / This is the teaching of the Buddha.”

I remembered one thing. First of all, the more we learn Dharma, the more we learn to do meditation, then our self-cherishing thought should become less. Our selfish mind and the delusions—ignorance, anger, attachment—should become weaker. The virtuous mind is stronger, Dharma become stronger and the delusions become weaker. It should be like that.

The more we learn Dharma, not only lamrim, but also the philosophical teachings, sutra and tantra, the more we learn, the more we study, the selfish mind should become less. There should be less anger and it becomes more difficult to get angry. Even there’s possibly anger, it is less than before.

But after we learn Dharma, we may become so impatient, even worse than before we met Dharma. It’s sometimes like that, we become even worse than before we met Dharma. Our mind becomes even more selfish, with more pride, and we’re much more difficult for ordinary people to speak to, even more difficult than before we met Dharma.

[This can happen] even though we can explain the Kangyur and the Tengyur. The Kangyur is the Buddha’s teachings and the Tengyur is the commentaries by Nagarjuna, Asanga and so forth, those Indian yogis, generally highly accomplished ones, those great holy beings, the pandits, Nagarjuna, Asanga and so forth.

The Kangyur has more than a hundred volumes and the Tengyur has more than two hundred volumes. We can explain them all by heart, but we never subdued our mind, we never used the teachings to benefit to our mind, to shape our mind well. We are the patient, having the chronic disease of the delusions, the selfish mind, this chronic disease from beginningless rebirths. We have been sick from beginningless rebirths; not only sick from birth [in this life], but sick from beginningless rebirths with the chronic disease of the mind, the delusions.

Even though we can explain by heart the Kangyur and the Tengyur, we never used them to subdue our mind, which has this chronic disease from beginningless rebirth. Of course we can explain well by heart without even looking at the texts, but we, the patient, never checked, never used the teachings as medicine for the chronic disease, the delusions, the self-cherishing thought and so forth, from beginningless rebirths.

Here the problem is that even though we can explain the whole Kangyur and Tengyur by heart, our mind is still the same, our mind still has the same problems as before we met Dharma. Nothing becomes less and we have become even more egoistic, with more pride, with so much ego. Our ego has blown up like a balloon. The ego has become big, with pride and many things.

That means we never practiced Dharma. That shows we learned Dharma but we never practice Dharma. Like a tape recorder, we can play the tape recorder and like that, we can explain everything, but the problem is still there and even becomes worse. That shows we never practiced Dharma; we learned Dharma, but never practiced Dharma. So we need to do that. Yes, learning is for practice. Otherwise, what is learning for?

The Buddha’s teachings, even one syllable, are to benefit our mind, to subdue our negative mind, the creator of the suffering, to subdue that, so we stop creating suffering, we stop creating samsara, we stop creating suffering in day-to-day life for ourselves and others.

If we’re learning meditation, if we’re learning Dharma, especially lamrim, the way it’s presented is to subdue the mind. The way it’s presented or outlined is to guide the mind. The elaboration in the philosophical teachings is to subdue the mind. Every single word of the Buddha’s teachings is to subdue the mind.

We can see the benefits of practicing Dharma if we are subduing the mind. We see the benefits of practicing Dharma and we can get happiness from Dharma. When we practice Dharma, we can see the happiness coming, that we are achieving from Dharma.

Otherwise, however much we learn, we keep the same mind—all the problems, ego and the selfish mind. Our mind and Dharma are separate. And then in that way even though we always studied, after we studied many important philosophical teachings, we would say, “Oh, Tibetan Buddhism didn’t give me any happiness.” We would say that. This has happened in the past. One person didn’t practice Dharma and didn’t recognize that. That person thought that without practicing, they could receive happiness externally.

By practicing Dharma we get happiness from our mind, without thinking that happiness comes from outside. Without recognizing the need to practice Dharma, without [controlling] the mind, we think happiness comes from outside, from the restaurant or the coffee shop. What is it called—the shop that sells coffee or tea? Huh?

Student: Starbucks.

Rinpoche: Oh, Starbucks. So anyway, this happens if we don’t practice. Then after some time, we learned so much, but it looks like, “Oh, Dharma doesn’t bring any happiness to me.” It looks like that; there’s that danger, great danger.

Numberless beings practiced Dharma and achieved enlightenment, including Guru Shakyamuni Buddha. Numberless beings in Tibet, Nepal and India, those Indian pandits and yogis, even in the present times, have reached very high tantric realizations. The present meditators in Dharamsala or different places who are meditating in the path have achieved high tantric realizations—not only bodhicitta, renunciation, guru devotion, the three principal aspects of the path to enlightenment, the essence of Buddhadharma, not only that, but tantric realizations, the generation and completion stages.

Like that, there are meditators in recent times in Dharamsala, where His Holiness lives. These meditators have actualized tantric realizations, even the completion stage, the clear light and illusory body, unification and so forth. It happened for many meditators, so for those who practice correctly, it’s happening. There are numberless beings who practice correctly and this will happen.

But we think, “Oh, I practiced, I studied for so many years, but there’s nothing happening.” There’s great danger of complaints about Buddhism; there’s great danger. So “Subduing one’s own mind / This is the teaching of the Buddha” is great, great, great, essential advice from the Buddha to us.

Even if we have little understanding of Dharma, if we received a few teachings and then subdue our own mind, if we practice what we can and subdue our own mind, then the purpose of learning meditation, of learning Dharma, is fulfilled. The need, the purpose, is fulfilled. It’s very worthwhile, then our life becomes so beneficial to us and to the world, to others, to the numberless sentient beings, to the world and to our country.

Taking care of the mind

We say, “Take care, take care well.” What I think it means is to take care of our life, to take care of our mind. The main thing is to take care of our mind in daily life.

How do we take care of our mind? My connotation is that “Take care” means taking care in the Dharma. Our mind is in Dharma, so that is the meaning of “Take care.” When our mind is not in Dharma, we’re not taking care, we’re not looking after ourselves, we abandon ourselves when we’re not doing that. It’s like we abandoned ourselves in the garbage, in the garbage dump.

That’s my connotation, the meaning of “Take care, take care. Oh, take care.” We often say this to somebody who is leaving or going away or something. We say, “Take care.” Anyway, the main thing, the most important thing, is to take care of the mind, and that means keeping the mind in Dharma, protecting the mind in Dharma.

My understanding or the real understanding of taking care is keeping our mind in the root of the path to enlightenment, correctly devoting to the virtuous friend, guru devotion, guru yoga. Our guru, our one guru is all the buddhas, the numberless buddhas, however many gurus we have, for example, Lama Atisha had 157 gurus. And one buddha—Shakyamuni Buddha or Tara or whoever it is—is all the gurus. One guru is all the buddhas. They are inseparable. There’s no buddha without the guru. Without the buddha, there’s no guru.

From our heart there’s no separation between guru and Buddha, no separation, seeing the guru as an ordinary being and the Buddha as something high. They are oneness. If from our heart, we have that realization and we feel like that all the time, naturally from our heart, then we’re taking care of our mind. We’re taking care of our life at that time, we’re taking care of our mind in Dharma, in guru devotion.

If we have that, then we will have all the success, spiritual success. If we have spiritual success, we have all the success; if we have spiritual success, we have all the success. If we have this success, then we can easily achieve full enlightenment, all those things. Then all the success of this life, all the temporary success comes by the way.

In the lamrim text, The Essential Nectar, it is mentioned, “However many drops [of water] in the Pacific Ocean, for that many eons, numberless eons, we put so much effort.” We put so much effort, even if we practice like that for numberless eons. How many eons? Equaling the number of drops of the Pacific Ocean. Even if we practice like that, it’s so difficult to achieve unification, enlightenment, the great unification. But here, “by depending on the kindness of the guru…” in these degenerate times.

The degeneration of mind means the delusions, the superstitions, become so heavy, so thick-skulled, so heavy, even heavier. Of course, the mind is formless, but [the delusions] become so heavy, even heavier than a rocky mountain or an iron mountain, which can be burned by fire when lava comes. The rocks usually don’t get burned by fire, but when lava comes it burns and they are melted. When the fire at the end of the world comes, the rocky mountains melt. I heard that the rocky mountains can change, but the mind is formless and shapeless. Wow, wow, wow. So from beginningless rebirths, our mind is not free from the oceans of suffering of samsara. Wow, wow, wow. Can you imagine, from beginningless rebirths?

I think this world exists for one great eon. The evolution of this world takes one great eon. How long does it exist? One great eon. How long does the time degeneration take? One great eon. How long until there’s no world, until it’s empty? One great eon.

But our mind—wow, wow, wow, wow—from beginningless rebirths, even though there’s so much suffering, we still didn’t become free from the oceans of samsaric suffering. We didn’t achieve the direct perception of emptiness that removes the seed of delusion, the cause of suffering., We still didn’t achieve that.

So then what happens? Life is not long, it is very short, and death can happen any time, any day. Yes, we have the opportunity to develop the mind, but we’re not sure for how long. [Death can happen] any day. So, there’s the danger of experiencing oceans of suffering, endless suffering.

As His Holiness says, we have a brain and are able to function more. We’re able to think big, therefore human beings are better than animals, that’s true. Humans can harm so many millions and millions of people in the world if we think the wrong way, but if we think in a positive way, we can bring happiness to the world, to the millions and millions and millions and millions of people. We can bring happiness and peace if we think in a positive way. So human beings can do that, we have that potential.

By depending on the power of guru in this degenerate time we can achieve great unification, the Vajradhara state, enlightenment. We can achieve that in this very short life in the degenerate time. Now there’s the mental degeneration. The delusions are so heavy, as I mentioned before. They are unbelievably difficult to subdue, so gross.

Then because sentient beings have become degenerated and so difficult to subdue, so difficult, unbelievably difficult, thick-skulled, even if we explain they don’t understand. However much logic we use, they cannot understand it. The logic that the pandits use, however much logic we use, there’s no karma for them to understand.

The root of samsaric suffering

The root of the six-realm sufferings—of the hell beings, hungry ghosts, animals, human beings, suras, asuras, including intermediate state beings—the very root is ignorance, holding the I and the aggregates as truly existent, as they appear truly existent.

That root of samsaric suffering is not only in the Prasangika. There are four Buddhist philosophical schools: Vaibashika, Sautrantika, Cittamatra and Umapa [Madhyamaka]. Madhyamaka, the Middle Way view, has two divisions, Svatantrika and Prasangika. So, we have to realize the Prasangika view; that is the most unmistaken [view]. Without realizing that, it’s impossible to remove the ignorance, the cause of the oceans of samsaric suffering like the Pacific Ocean. We cannot remove the cause of suffering, we cannot eliminate it directly.

What am I saying? Even though, yes, how many human beings in this world, even Buddhist—not only non-Buddhist, but even Buddhist—how many Buddhists understand the Prasangika view? Very few. Lama Tsongkhapa gave the clearest explanation of that.

In the past, in Tibet and in the other countries, even learned, famous meditators made so many mistakes in actualizing the Prasangika view. They even made great mistakes. Lama Tsongkhapa gave the clearest explanation of the Buddha’s teachings. So [those who understand this view] are very few in number. Each of the schools has its own view of ultimate truth and its own connotation.

In Lama Tsongkhapa’s Lamrim Chenmo, the great lamrim, there are so many pages, about this many pages long. [Rinpoche shows the thickness of the pages] There are so many pages contradicting the wrong views of the learned ones that happened in the past. [Their views were] rejected, proven wrong.

Then jigten yang dag pai tawa, karma, cause and effect—those who understand that are very few. Those who accept reincarnation and karma are very few in the world. Those who don’t accept that, who don’t agree with that, are so many, and it’s very difficult for them to understand, even leaving aside emptiness, ultimate reality. Even just reincarnation and karma—for worldly people even that is so difficult to understand. As I mentioned, even though we explain the pandits’ logic, what they said, people don’t agree, they don’t accept it. Anyway, this is the degeneration of right view.

Then there is degeneration of life. Our life becomes so short because the delusions become so strong, and the effect is that our life becomes so short. I think of the five degenerations, maybe one is time. There are so many wars, disease, so many things happening like that, so many sufferings in the world. So that’s degenerated time. I don’t know whether I counted five; I think four. [Rinpoche laughs] Anyway, like that.

We ARe So fortunate

[Even in this] degenerate time, by the power of the guru, great unification and the Vajradhara state can be achieved immediately. This is explained in The Essential Nectar. So, if we have our mind in guru devotion that’s incredible, we are most lucky, the most fortunate person, most lucky, [although] we’re not someone who gains a billion dollars, who wins the lottery.

One time when I was very small, I stayed at Ghoom Monastery, a branch of Domo Geshe Rinpoche’s monastery. In Tibet there is Dungkar Gompa and one of the branches is in Darjeeling, Ghoom Monastery. There are two monasteries. One was built by the Indian government, I’m not sure why. In his past life, the incarnation lived there. In the life even before that, the old Ghoom Monastery was built, but [now there’s] a new one. When you go to Darjeeling it’s at the end of the road. When you cross the train station, you reach the monastery down by the road; it’s very easy to see. I was there many times.

The place where I became a monk in Tibet was Domo Geshe’s monastery, Dungkar Gompa. Some elder monks and the teacher who took care of me, a monk from Domo Geshe’s monastery who became my chang tso, my manager, brought me through Bhutan [to India]. After nine months Tibet was taken over by mainland China, so I escaped through Bhutan to India. The monk who helped brought me from a town called Pagri in Tibet, through Bhutan to Buxa in Jalpaiguri, West Bengal. Buxa is where Mahatma Gandhi-ji and Prime Minister Nehru were imprisoned when India was under British rule. So I escaped there after nine months, when mainland China took over Tibet.

My teacher took care of me and brought me through Bhutan to India. He took care of me in Tibet and helped me to become monk and to offer examination. There are two texts you have to memorize and offer examination in the gompa, in the puja with all the monks. I did the first one, but I didn’t get the chance to do the second one.

He took me to Darjeeling where there was a lottery. There were some elder monks and there was a lottery, so I bought a ticket but I didn’t win. There were many people and one simple lady, a Nepalese I think, won. I don’t know how many hundred thousand rupees she won, I’m not sure, but quite a bit. She carried the money wrapped in her sari like this, I saw that. And the next day she died. I think probably she was extremely, extremely happy, and then also maybe worried, I’m not sure, because now, what would she do with the money? I don’t know.

Some people are so happy they die. I don’t know, but she died the next day. Anyway, I don’t remember what I said. What did I say? [Students answer Rinpoche in Tibetan] Anyway, it doesn’t matter.

So then, to finish my talk about the meaning of taking care of yourself.“ “Take care” is a very common thing to say. But for me, “Take care” means to have a correct way of thinking That’s how we take care of ourselves, not through the wrong way of thinking. The wrong way of thinking brings suffering, but the correct way of thinking, the positive way of thinking, the virtuous way of thinking, that’s taking care of ourselves.

If our mind is in renunciation, even if we’re not even looking for enlightenment, ultimate happiness, but we’re looking for liberation from samsara, so we’re never falling down, never again becoming a samsaric being and again suffering. Once we achieve that blissful state of peace, once we have ceased the delusions and karma by actualizing the path, the wisdom directly perceiving emptiness, it’s forever. Once we have achieved that, it’s forever.

Therefore, practicing Dharma is extremely worthwhile. We’ve been trying to achieve all the samsaric pleasure, happiness, whatever, we have been trying to achieve that numberless times—even that of the universal king, not only the human king, but even Indra, the king of the devas, the sura realm, Indra, Brahma and so forth, even the worldly god realms, the sura and asura realms, [we have experienced that] numberless times from beginningless rebirths.

There’s no samsaric pleasure that we have never experienced—nothing, nothing. Also there’s no suffering in samsara that we have never experienced. There’s nothing left. We have experienced suffering and pleasure numberless times. But those who don’t know about past and future lives think it’s the first time in this life and they get excited. Due to ignorance, they don’t know about past and future lives.

What I’m saying is that when the mind is in renunciation, we’re looking for ultimate happiness and we see that the samsaric pleasure is in the nature of suffering, and from where it comes, pervasive compounding suffering, is totally in the nature of suffering. It’s like being in the center of a fire or in a prison, or as if our naked body is sitting in a thorn bush or like we’re sitting on the tip of a needle. We realize that pervasive compounding suffering is like that and we have no interest even for one day, an hour, a minute or even a second. We have no interest to be in that.

The mind with renunciation of samsara has the inner great happiness, inner happiness, inner great happiness, inner great happiness because the mind is totally free from attachment to samsaric pleasure. This is just a side effect. I mean, not a side effect, a side talk.

For example, how can the meditator to be successful in their meditation? What are their needs for the meditation to be successful?

I don’t remember which text says this, but it’s pure morality. If ethics, pure morality, is not there, then so many problems come. We can’t have successful meditation and so many problems come. Even if we try to meditate, we get lung and there are so many problems. This happens. We don’t go on the right path. So an ethical life, pure morality, is very, very, very important for success in meditation.

And then having heard the teachings, and having a contented mind, a satisfied mind, because if we’re not content, if our mind is not content, we are longing for so many things.

There’s an example of one lady, a student, who achieved shamatha—I think she said she had achieved the seventh level. She told me that, but it was a long time ago, many years ago. Anyway, that’s what she said. She tried to achieve zhi nä, but at the same time she had the motivation to marry an American doctor. That was what she wanted. She was doing zhi nä but at the same time she very much wanted to get married. So His Holiness told him [the doctor] to do zhi nä and to become a monk, which was the opposite of what she wanted.

I don’t know, I can’t say, but maybe she might have been angry with His Holiness. She was doing zhi nä but also her mind was like that. It didn’t work out because His Holiness asked the doctor to do zhi nä and become a monk. [Laughter]

Other meditators, Tibetan meditators I know, were never like that. They were totally renounced, ascetic monks, for example, my teacher, Gen Jampa Wangdu. In Dalhousie he lived in a very messy house; it didn’t have a good shape, but at least it had a good roof. The house was very messy so there were a lot of spirits there at nighttime. Geshe Jampa Wangdu said that when he recited Bodhicaryavatara, the first chapter about the benefits of bodhicitta, the spirits made so much noise and he gave them a teaching. He was a great meditator of zhi nä.

Freda Bedi’s death

I was in Dalhousie at a school for young lamas started by Freda Bedi, an English woman who was a nun at that time. She was a very devoted disciple of His Holiness Karmapa’s past life. She went all around the world, even to Africa, to so many [places] to talk about His Holiness Karmapa, his qualities, so she made him very famous. She passed away in Delhi. 

When she passed away, she was very devoted to her gurus and she died in meditation with her hands like this. [Rinpoche shows hand mudra] I think she was holding a bell and vajra and she died in meditation. She died that way because she was very devoted to her guru. She didn’t have much Dharma understanding, maybe some, maybe the essence, but not extensive. She was very devoted and as I mentioned before, most fortunate, most fortunate.

Now I remember: the one who has devotion to the guru is a most fortunate person. That’s why I use this example. Even if we win a billion dollars or a million dollars in a lottery, it is nothing. I was using that example.

When Freda Bedi died, she died like this, holding bell and vajra. [Rinpoche shows hand mudra] She died in meditation at the Oberoi Hotel. Her friend, another lady, owned the hotel or I think it might have been several people. There’s one lady, her friend, called Goodie Oberoi. She was His Holiness Karmapa’s disciple and I think she was Lama Yeshe’s disciple. So Miss Oberoi said she pulled Freda’s hand outward like this, but then it went back like this, because she was still in meditation. [Rinpoche shows the meditation posture and crossed hands]

Miss Oberoi called a Hindu guru and a Tibetan lama together to do the prayers and then the body was taken to His Holiness Karmapa’s monastery in Sikkim. It was like that. When Freda Bedi died, she was a great object of devotion for everybody.

She came to Buxa two or three times to see all the incarnate lamas. At that time I think she had become a Buddhist, but maybe more like Theravadin. She found pen friends to help with sending money or letters to the lamas, who were sometimes old but most of them were young ones, incarnate lamas in the monastery. So that’s what she did.

She started the school five times and invited incarnate lamas of Kagyü, Nyingma, Sakya and Gelug traditions, so I went to Delhi and Dalhousie for six months at each place. In Dalhousie, on Sundays we would go around the mountain with the students, the other incarnate lamas from the school.

Gen Jampa Wangdu’s realizations 

When Gen Jampa Wangdu came to look for firewood, he never appeared to be looking for firewood, though he was actually coming to look for firewood in the forest. But when he came, he was so righteous, his shamtab, his robes, were so righteous. Normally when the monks are going to look for firewood, they would sort of wrap [their zen around their waist]. They did not wear their robes properly. They were never totally perfect when they came to look for firewood in the forest.

So Gen Jampa Wangdu achieved zhi nä at Dalhousie. There’s a great lama from Drepung who became a lharampa geshe with Serkong Dorje Chang at the Mönlam Chenmo, the great festival which was started by Lama Tsongkhapa in Tibet. They did the geshe examination with thousands, not just a thousand but so many thousands. 

There are so many learned ones from the six monasteries, Sera Mey, Sera Je, Ganden Shartse, Jangtse, Drepung Gomang and Loseling. The very top, learned ones, each of them has, I don’t know, maybe six or seven [monks] around them, so many other learned ones. Anyway, they had to give answers at the Mönlam Chenmo. Then they went to the mountains to do retreat.

And then Dewo Gyüpe Rinpoche—I don’t want to talk about Serkong Dorje Chang; that’s a different subject. They all went to the mountains and bearing much hardship they actualized the path, they completed the path and achieved enlightenment.

Dewo Gyüpe Rinpoche had the Lamrim Chenmo and his chögö, and that’s all he needed to carry. He went to a very high mountain near Lhasa, I’ve forgotten its name. Usually you don’t see the top; usually the top is covered by clouds. So, he went to the mountain and when he got to the mountain to look for a cave, a stone fell down. There was a stone thrown toward him. So he followed the stone and then later there was a cave. In the cave, there was a skeleton in meditation. Dewo Gyüpe Rinpoche offered a mandala, then the skeleton collapsed after that. Then he decided to do meditation there. 

His disciples or learned ones came from the monastery, from Drepung. They were not very close, not tight, not close—some were there and one was there, one on the mountain, in different places, then they would meditate. That happened until Tibet was lost, I mean, taken by mainland China.

After that, he came to India, then he went to Dalhousie, near Dharamsala, where a group of monks had started. He checked for anyone who could meditate—not somebody who couldn’t meditate—and could actualize the path, lamrim. So Gen Jampa Wangdu was there and he achieved zhi nä, calm abiding, there.

Gen Jampa Wangdu said at the beginning he had a dream that he was riding on a horse and the horse fell down. So he thought that he may not achieve zhi nä, but actually he achieved zhi nä. I think it might be fully characterized zhi nä. He often used to say [that’s] our best friend.

Before, I made a Dharma connection with him. I took teachings from him about chulen, taking the essence of the pills. When you do retreat in a very, very isolated place, which is so very far, so far to get food, then in those kinds of places[you can do] chulen. You live on taking the flower pills, then you don’t need to make food, you don’t need food. So you do a twenty-one day retreat. If you succeed, then you can just do retreat anytime; you can live that way anytime. You don’t need to make food; you don’t need to look for food, which wastes a lot of time in the life.

So I took that [chulen teaching], and then I asked him a question, “What is the quickest way to get lamrim realizations?” His answer was to practice the antidote to the self-cherishing thought. He didn’t mention the name “lamrim” but he said to practice the antidote to the self-cherishing thought. That was his answer. That’s a very big answer, an unbelievable answer. That’s very true. So that is the practice of bodhicitta, but the way he presented it was by saying, “Practice the antidote to the self-cherishing thought.” That’s a dynamic answer. He used to say that before, when I took teachings [from him.]

He was the best friend of Lama Yeshe and myself in Dharamsala. So we heard news about any monks living an ascetic life in the mountains or anyone who had achieved realizations. We heard news about their realizations of tantra and sutra. Also there were meditators in Bhutan who achieved realizations and we heard a lot of news like that.

Why? Because for meditators, Dharamsala is the main [place], then there are other places, where they report to His Holiness what realizations they achieved. Those who are devoted to His Holiness as their main guru, their root guru, report to His Holiness. Some meditators report to His Holiness Trijang Rinpoche as their root guru, but he hears about it mainly from His Holiness. When he goes to see His Holiness, they talk and His Holiness mentions, “Oh, somebody, somebody has realizations. Somebody has realizations.”

Sometimes [he would talk about] the Tibetan government, sometimes about politics. He would tell us what he heard from His Holiness, but mostly it was about realizations—who achieved what kind of realization, so they were very inspiring Dharma talks.

Gen Jampa Wangdu would often say that until we achieve zhi nä realization, what we call meditation is not meditation. What we call any meditation is not meditation until we achieve zhi nä. That’s what he said. I think that’s what we feel when we achieve zhi nä; that’s what we recognize. Those other times it is not real meditation—that’s what we feel after we achieve perfect [zhi nä].

The precious thought of bodhicitta

Sorry, what I was saying? So when our mind is in bodhicitta, meditating on bodhicitta, the effortful experience or the effortless experience, which is the realization, that’s the best way of taking care of ourselves, looking after ourselves in the best way. That’s the best.

It’s beneficial, not only for us but for all the sentient beings—the numberless hell beings, hungry ghosts, animals, human beings, suras, asuras, every single ant on the road, every single bird, every single pig, everyone. When we meditate on bodhicitta, wow, wow, wow, wow. Even just praying with bodhicitta—wow, wow—for every living being who wants happiness and doesn’t want suffering. This bodhicitta practice is to benefit, to cause happiness, to cause enlightenment, sang gye, for everybody. It’s fantastic, unbelievable.

We’re taking responsibility; what responsibility we’re taking. Wow, wow, wow, wow, wow, wow, wow. Even numberless human beings respect us, but it’s not just for them, it’s also for the numberless hell beings who are suffering, whose suffering if it were to manifest, to take form, would fill up whole sky. Their suffering, if it materialized, would fill up the whole sky, the limitless sky.

So the numberless hell beings, numberless hungry ghosts, numberless animals, just those in the ocean, wow, wow, wow. From the airplane it looks so blue, so nice, so peaceful, but when you just go in the ocean a little bit, there are numberless sentient beings. There are so many different types of fish, but each of the types is numberless.

Sorry, my talk will never finish. I was going to do prayers, but it didn’t get done. What do you call the small fish? There are millions and millions and millions and they go so fast because they have fear. There are millions and millions that go so fast because they have a fear of being eaten by other big fish. So many big fish are coming, then a shark comes and eats them. They have incredible fear and want to escape, millions and millions of them, and of course they have to eat food, probably other small animals, I don’t know.

And then the big fish eat them. When the shark comes, it has a big mouth so they get scared and they become a ball sticking [together]. But what happens is that the shark can very easily find them, so it’s their karma. For them it means protection, but they don’t know the shark can find them very easily.

In the water it’s very nice from the outside, it’s so blue, so quiet, so peaceful, and we think it’s so beautiful, but if we go a little bit under the ocean, if we just look inside the ocean, what suffering.
The whales, those that are large like a mountain and those that are small, that we can’t see with the eyes, but with a machine—everyone is eating each other, wow. They always have great fear and they get eaten by somebody, but also they have to eat somebody. Can you imagine? Wow, wow, wow.

I don’t remember [what they are called] but there’s this [animal] in the ocean and from the water they come up on the rock. They have this hair and a nice-looking face, a cute face. Huh?

Student: Dolphin.

Rinpoche: No, not a dolphin. The one that comes onto the rocks.

Student: Seal.

Rinpoche: Yes. I think that the seal is eaten by the dolphin. Huh?

Student: Shark.

Rinpoche: Shark. Anyway, one is eaten by another. That one is eaten by another and then that one is eaten. I don’t remember their names, but it is like that. All those animals are really fat and then they are eaten by another animal, a shark or whatever, dolphins. One is eaten by another one. Anyway, there’s so much unbelievable, unbelievable, most unbelievable suffering. 

So bodhicitta covers everything, everybody in the water, in the ocean—I’m talking about the numberless animals in the ocean.

Then in the ground, on the ground, when we walk over the grass, there are so many flies, so many tiny ones that just run away. Wow, wow, wow, wow, wow. And in the trees or flying in the sky, so many, so many. Bodhicitta does not leave out one insect. The prayer [is like that], you understand? It’s incredible. If we really think about it, it’s unbelievable, an unbelievable thought, a precious thought, a holy thought.

Through that thought [we wish to] benefit them, to free them from the oceans of samsaric suffering and bring them to peerless happiness, sang gye, to the state of omniscient mind. It is unbelievable, most unbelievable.

Correct understanding of emptiness

Emptiness, tong pa nyi, shunyata—even if we don’t have the actual realization but we have correct understanding and do effortful meditation, just meditating on that is protecting ourselves, taking care of ourselves. That is taking care of ourselves. This is very, very, very, very, very important.

Taking care of ourselves, looking after ourselves, taking care of our mind, our life, is to end samsaric suffering which has no beginning. It has no beginning, but we can end it. Can you imagine? To end the oceans of suffering of samsara, to end that. So it helps for that.

Then there’s tantra, taking care of ourselves. I just explained what I thought. It’s even more transcendent—we abandon impure view and impure mind. We live our life in that [pure mind and pure view] with tantra; we work with that.

So I think we will do the meditation that was supposed to be done before, this morning.


A star, a defective view, a butter lamp flame,
An illusion, a dew drop, a water bubble,
A dream, lightning, a cloud:
See all causative phenomena like this.

I, action, object, all the phenomena—what exists is merely imputed by the mind. What exists is what is merely imputed by the mind, therefore, I, action, object, do not exist from their own side. No phenomena exists from its own side, everything is totally empty from its own side.

It’s like a star in the daytime—there’s a star, but it’s covered by sunlight. It exists but it is empty of existing from its own side, therefore it exists in mere name. Therefore, dependent arising and emptiness are unified. There’s a star even though we don’t see it because it’s covered by sunlight.

Everything is empty. As I mentioned this morning, it’s not nihilism; the emptiness here is not nihilism. Tong pa nyi means “emptiness only.” Ignorance leaves a negative imprint on the mind and projects [true existence.] Right after things are merely labeled by the mind in the first second, then in the next second that is projected onto merely labeled things. I, action, object, are merely labeled by the mind, then in the next second the negative imprint left by the ignorance projects true existence.

It’s like a magician, who by using substances or mantras hallucinates the audience, their senses, so the magician makes them see something which doesn’t exist. Something appears real and people believe that which doesn’t exist. The magician person can do that.

There’s emptiness, but it’s like the emptiness is covered, hidden. It’s covered by the hallucination. There’s a star there but due to the light of the sun, the brightness, we don’t see it. There’s the illusion of true existence, truly existent appearance, but it has never been there. I, action, object appear to exist from their own side, as truly existing. Things appear to exist by themselves and we actually one hundred percent believe in that.

We live our whole life, not only from this morning until night, not only from birth to death, not only that, but from beginningless rebirths up to now and also in the future, endlessly. Not sure when we will realize that everything—I action, object—is empty. Not sure when we’ll realize that everything is empty from its own side.

So karma is emptiness. Think everything is empty. I is empty; action is empty; object is empty; things do not exist from their own side, they are totally empty. Meditate a little bit on that.

Rab rib is the hallucinated view, the defective view. The example given in the text is that it’s like while we’re eating food, there appears to be hair dropping in the food. We have a vision like that. It’s not happening, but we are seeing it like that, rab rib and so forth. Maybe also it is sometimes due to defective eyes, then we see the wrong visions that are not happening in reality. This is rab rib.

Like that, the I, action, object, everything [appears to] exist, everything [appears] real. We think everything exists from its own side, we think everything appearing is real, but that’s wrong, it is totally a hallucination. They do not exist at all. That never happened from the beginning.

The [next example is] light. When many causes and conditions are gathered, then light [for example, the butter lamp flame] happens. The rest of the causative phenomena happen like that.

We will do the meditation on the first verse.

[Rinpoche chants in Tibetan]

A star, a defective view, a butter lamp flame

[Pause for meditation, then Rinpoche chants in Tibetan]

An illusion, a dew drop, a water bubble

Gyu ma, like a dream, an illusion. As I explained already, ignorance is like a magician person who uses a mantra or substances to hallucinate the people’s senses.

Ignorance left a negative imprint on the mind and right after our own mind projects merely imputed I, action, object, all the phenomena, then in the next second, it projects true existence, real from its own side, real from its own side, existing from its own side, a hallucination, an illusion. It projects an illusion, appearing real from its own side, but I, action, object, all the phenomena, are totally false, empty, gyu ma.

Zil pa, like water dew, all these causative phenomena are like water dew on the trees or on the grass. It can be dropped at any time on the ground. It can go down on the ground; it is dropped or it stops there. I don’t know how to say it. Huh? On the plant, the tree, this dew is there . So this is the causative phenomena.

Especially our life, our body, our family, friends and possessions, particularly these are the main objects of our attachment. That’s the main meditation.

If we meditate, if we practice mindfulness in this, then when some change happens in normal life, because we know that, because our mind is aware of that, because we have been meditating that it is their nature, it doesn’t make us afraid, it doesn’t scare us. When it happens it doesn’t scare us; our mind is in peace.

When a family member dies, there’s [usually] a big problem in the family for months or years. They become so depressed and so negative, their life becomes so negative. I hear there’s so much suffering like that for those families. That’s because in normal life they never thought about the reality of life. This meditation was never learned, they never meditated, so when some change happens, it’s a huge shock in their life.

This is showing the reality, but they never thought about it; they believed it was always permanent or long-lasting. It doesn’t fit with their view and then the family has so much suffering for months and years. This meditation helps.

Not only that, by meditating on this—on our body, our enjoyments, the family, the possessions and so forth, then when a change happens it helps to eliminate the ignorance apprehending things as real, truly existent. It helps to eliminate the root of samsara, the basic wrong view. Then we realize emptiness, which is the remedy to the concept of permanence, the wrong concept of permanence.

What is impermanent, these things—ourselves, our body, family members, possessions—all these are impermanent in nature, but we believe them to be permanent. [Emptiness meditation] eliminates the wrong concept of permanence and helps us to not arise attachment to this or that, attachment and anger. These delusions do not arise. It helps for that. It helps to cease these delusions, the cause of samsara, the delusions. The rest is easy.

An illusion, a dew drop, a water bubble

Next is water, like water. These causative phenomena are like a water bubble, looking nice, beautiful, but it can be popped. There’s no essence, nothing solid, it can be popped any time. All this has no essence; it looks nice, like a rainbow, but there’s nothing concrete to keep it. It disappears, so it has no essence.

The water bubble, even though it is beautiful, it pops any time. [Rinpoche snaps fingers] All these phenomena can be ceased anytime. When we think that, there’s no fear, and it helps to not arise ignorance, anger, attachment, so there is peace. It causes us to achieve nirvana, the blissful state of peace for ourselves.

If it’s done with bodhicitta, of course, then [we can achieve] enlightenment. Our own body, our friends, family and possessions, all our money, everything, whether it is our body, other people’s bodies or material possessions, they’re like a water bubble—nice-looking but having no essence, and then they can be ceased, stopped any time. [Rinpoche snaps fingers] So it’s very useful to have control, to not arise anger, attachment and ignorance.

Recognize the dream as a dream

A dream, lightning, a cloud

Like a dream. All this is like a dream. In a dream our mind merely imputes, but also projects true existence, real. Also in the dream [things appear] real, but that’s not true. It’s our mind’s projection; it’s not real.

When we have a billion dollars in our dream, when we found a billion dollars in our dream—we found it left on the table but when we wake up there’s no billion dollars, there’s not even one dollar in our hand or on the table. So it’s very clear that it didn’t exist.

When we recognize the dream as a dream—somebody gave us a billion dollars or we got a billion dollars [in the dream] but we recognize the dream is a dream—then we don’t cling to that, we don’t have miserliness, there’s no attachment or anger for that. If somebody takes it away, still we know it’s not true. We know it’s a dream; we recognize the dream as a dream, so we don’t get attached or angry even if somebody steals it away.

Like lightning. This human life, the family and all these material possessions, cars and buildings, whatever we have, money and so forth, all this is just for a short time. Like lightning—it happens then it’s gone, especially when we die. Now it looks like a long life but actually when we die, that happens. We’re a human being now, but then it’s gone. It happens then it’s gone, exactly like lightning. When we die, that really happens. It’s gone, like lightning.

Then like the clouds. While we’re looking at the clouds they change. Causative phenomena are like clouds—while we’re looking at the clouds they change, they don’t last. They’re there but the next minute we look up and they’re not there.

Causative phenomena are like this. Compounded phenomena or causative phenomena are like that. The meditation object should be ourselves our body and possessions, our family members, our material possessions, all that. Especially when these are the objects of our attachment, anger and ignorance, they should be used as the object of meditation. That is very, very useful and it makes the mind so free. It’s really like becoming free from a prison, like we’re free from a prison. With all the attachment, anger and ignorance it’s like we’re in prison, our mind is in prison.

See all causative phenomena like this.

Now the rest of the meditation.

[Rinpoche chants the next verse slowly in Tibetan]


By these merits, may transmigratory beings
Attain the rank of all-seeing, subdue the enemy of faults,
And be freed from the ocean of samsara,
Disturbed by the waves of aging, sickness, and death.

I think it’s already five pm. Maybe one question. If there’s one question, I can try to answer it.

Student: Are you also an illusion of my mind? [Question inaudible]

Rinpoche: Yes. If you see me, I exist. You exist, I exist. The illusion is the way of appearing, the way I appear to you. The way I appear to you, especially if it is as a real one existing from its own side, that’s the projection of your ignorance.

I exist, you exist, we exist in mere name, merely labeled by the valid mind. Yes, that one exists, but the way it’s appearing, if it appears like that, definitely it’s a projection of your ignorance. If you see me like that, it’s a projection of ignorance, OK? Thank you.

One more? If not, then we’ll finish with the dedication.

How many people are [here] who never heard Dharma before, who never heard teachings before? Anybody? Who never heard teachings before at all? Huh? [Several people put up their hands] OK. Alright.

I want to say that we are so fortunate, unbelievably fortunate this time to be able to come here, to recognize the suffering that we should be free from. Recognizing the cause of suffering is [something that] normally in the world we do not speak about or think about. This is much deeper. What the world speaks about is just the conditions, not the real cause. They’re talking about the conditions—even if they’re talking about something, it’s just the conditions.

Here, we’re actually talking about the real cause of suffering. Here, we are trying to learn that, to see that. Then we come to know what is the real happiness, the ultimate happiness that needs to be achieved. We come here to recognize that, to learn the correct path to achieve that. This is without talking about enlightenment, the state of the omniscient mind. So it’s extremely worthwhile, most worthwhile, most fortunate to be able to come here this time.

This opens our mind. Like a lotus opening, our mind, our wisdom opens. We also develop compassion, which is all the potential our mind has. We develop that from now on. Because of compassion, generating compassion, developing compassion for the living beings, and also wisdom, then [our mind is] like a lotus opening. This is very, very important, so important.

There are many [people] in the world who are trying to meditate, trying to look for meditation, trying to teach meditation, trying to do meditation and to teach. There are many, non-Buddhist and even Buddhist. Of course, for certain people, it becomes a method, but [following] the correct path to the ultimate happiness, even liberation from samsara, and especially the correct path to full enlightenment, the state of omniscient mind, that is so important, most important. It is not necessary to be Buddhist to be correct. It’s very difficult and it depends on your karma. We need a lot of merit and karma to meet the correct path.

Thank you very much. Now we’ll dedicate.


"Due to all the past, present and future merits collected by me and collected by numberless sentient beings and numberless buddhas, may bodhicitta, the precious thought of enlightenment, be generated in the hearts of the six-realm beings—including the intermediate state there are seven—particularly in the hearts of the living beings in this world, and especially in the hearts of all the students, and in the hearts of the center benefactors and the volunteers working in the center and those who rely on me, whom I promised to pray for, whose names are given to me, and especially all of us here, including our family members. And in those whose hearts bodhicitta has been generated, may it increase."

Jang chhub ... phel war shog

Then [to realize] emptiness, we’ll do the same prayer.

"Due to all the three time merits collected by me, the three-time merits collected by numberless sentient beings and numberless buddhas."

Tong nyi ta wa … phel war shog

"Due to all the past, present and future merits collected by me, the three-time merits collected by numberless sentient beings and numberless buddhas, may the sole object of refuge for us all, the six-realm sentient beings, the originator of all our happiness and the incomparable, supreme guide of us sentient beings, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, the Compassion Buddha, Chenrezig, have a stable life until our samsara ends, and may His Holiness’ holy wishes succeed immediately."

Gang ri ra wäi … tän gyur chig

"May we be able to follow His Holiness’s advice all the time."

[Chanting continues]

"Due to all the three time merits collected by me and the three-time merits collected by numberless sentient beings and numberless buddhas, for all of us, the students, the center benefactors and the volunteers, those who rely on me and whom I promised to pray for, whose names are given to me, all of us here, including our family members, in all our lifetimes may Lama Tsongkhapa be the direct Mahayana guru for us and guide us as a Mahayana teacher. May we never be separated away from the pure path that is admired by all the buddhas."

Tshe rab kün tu … par ma gyur chig

"May we be like Lama Tsongkhapa in all our lifetimes; he who made the clearest explanation of the Buddha’s teachings and who brought the greatest benefit to sentient beings. May we become like that."

Päl dän la mäi … gyur war shog

Then we should also pray for the world. It’s very important to pray for the world.

"Due to all the three-time merits collected by me and the three-time merits collected by numberless sentient beings and numberless buddhas, by having generated bodhicitta in everyone’s heart in this world, may the dangers of war, famine, disease, all these problems, be pacified immediately. May the dangers of fire, water, air, earthquakes and tsunamis be pacified immediately, and may perfect peace and happiness prevail all over the world. May everybody become fortunate and actualize lamrim, the realizations of the graduated path to enlightenment."

Khe la tö ching … dzä du söl

Then a very important prayer.

"Due to all the three-time merits collected by me, by sentient beings and by the buddhas, may we never arise heresy or anger toward the actions of the guru and may we realize that all the buddhas’ actions [are pure]. May we receive the blessings of the guru and attain realizations of the graduated path to enlightenment. May this happen."

Päl dän la mäi … jug par shog

"May we be able to cherish everyone the most—the numberless hell beings, hungry ghosts, animals, human beings, suras, asuras. May we be able to cherish them the most and realize they are the kindest, most precious and wish-fulfilling for us. Every one of them is wish-fulfilling for us. May we realize that every sentient being is much more precious than the sky filled with gold, diamonds, sapphires or wish-granting jewels that we could own. Each sentient being is more precious than the whole sky filled with wish-granting jewels.

"May we be able to serve sentient beings the most. In that way we will enjoy our life. That’s the best enjoyment in our life, the greatest happiness in our life."

Dag ni sem chän … dzin par chog

"May we become like a wish-granting jewel and a wish-fulfilling tree. In Amitabha Buddha’s pure land there are wish-granting trees and then whatever wish is generated, everything happens. [Rinpoche snaps fingers] Like that, may we become like a wish-granting tree fulfilling all the desires of the sentient beings. May we be like a wish-fulfilling jewel fulfilling all the hopes of the sentient beings immediately, without any effort. May that happen.

"[Dedicate for] all the projects in the FPMT to succeed immediately and to be most beneficial for sentient beings and for the teachings of Buddha, especially the large statues of Maitreya Buddha, Padmasambhava and so forth, not only in India, but also in the rest of the world. To build as many as possible, large in size, not tsa tsa [size] but large size. Without effort, to be able to build them immediately and for them to be most beneficial for sentient beings and the teachings of Buddha.

"May numberless sentient beings, by building the statues, by seeing them, by circumambulating, by doing meditation, making offerings and so forth, purify defilements collected from beginningless rebirth, collect extensive merits and actualize the path to enlightenment, especially bodhicitta. May they bring perfect peace and happiness in the world through that."

Bä dang tsöl wa … tra shi shog

"Due to all the three-time merits collected by me, the three-time merits collected by numberless sentient beings and numberless buddhas, may the Sangha, particularly those in the FPMT, and those here in Italy, outwardly have an extremely subdued manner like the hearer-listeners. Inwardly, may their mind be extremely subdued with bodhicitta, and may they secretly experience the transcendental wisdom of great bliss nondual with emptiness. May they actualize all the different levels of Lama Tsongkhapa’s teachings and then spread the stainless teachings of Lama Tsongkhapa in the world.

"Also, may all those who study lamrim and the philosophical teachings be able to use them to subdue the mind. May they actualize guru devotion, renunciation, bodhicitta, right view, the three principal aspects of the path to enlightenment and the common and uncommon two stages, and then achieve full enlightenment as quickly as possible.

"Due to all the past, present and future merits collected by me and the three-time merits collected by numberless sentient beings and numberless buddhas, may the students who are dying—the ex-monk and the other students who are dying of cancer and other things—immediately recover from the disease and have a long life, a healthy, meaningful life, and be able to actualize bodhicitta in this very lifetime. May they achieve the unified state of Vajradhara as quickly as possible. If they don’t have the karma to be healthy and have long life, may they never ever be reborn in the lower realms, and may they have no worry or fear at the time of death, because they are relying on Buddha, Dharma and Sangha."

They are relying on Buddha, Dharma and Sangha so there’s no worry or fear of the lower realms. Also if they use bodhicitta when they die it’s the happiest, happiest death, the most meaningful death, beneficial for every sentient being, the happiest death.

"May they be born in a pure land, Dagpa Khachö and so forth, where they can achieve enlightenment or at least receive a perfect human rebirth and meet the Mahayana teachings, a perfectly qualified Mahayana guru, and only please the holy mind of the virtuous friend. May they achieve enlightenment; may they achieve the unified state of Vajradhara as quickly as possible."

The last dedication.

"Due to all the past, present and future merits collected by me, the three-time merits collected by numberless sentient beings and numberless buddhas, which are merely labeled by the mind, may I, who is also merely labeled by the mind, achieve peerless happiness, the state of omniscient mind, which is also merely labeled by the mind, and lead all sentient beings, who are also merely labeled by the mind, to that state of omniscient mind, which is also merely labeled by the mind, by myself alone, who is also merely labeled by the mind."


"Due to all the past, present, future merits collected by me, the three-time merits collected by numberless sentient beings and numberless buddhas, may the stainless teaching of Lama Tsongkhapa be actualized within me and spread in the hearts of the sentient beings."

Thank you very much.