Hello, Tashi Delek, everyone. So, let everybody in. Wait for a few minutes, then we will start the session.
So, today we are going to start our session with the prayers and mandalas as usual. And then, after that, then I will start the Lamrim teaching.[Prayers] [REFUGE AND BODHICITTA PRAYER]
I take refuge in the buddha, Dharma, and Supreme Assembly
Until the attainment of enlightenment.
Through the merit of practicing generosity and so forth,
May Buddhahood be accomplished for the benefit of beings.
May all beings have happiness and the causes of happiness.
May they be free from suffering and the causes of suffering.
May they be inseparable from true happiness devoid of and suffering.
May they realize great equanimity, without attachment to loved ones and
aversion to others.
Through homage, making offerings, confession,
rejoicing, exhorting, and supplicating,
whatever small virtue I have amassed,
I delicate it all to supreme enlightenment.
The ground is anointed with fragrant waters and streun with flowers,
adorned with Sumeru, the four continents, the sun, and the moon.
Through my imagining this as a buddha realm and offering it,
may all beings enjoy and completely pure realm.
Glorious and precious root guru
who sits on a lotus-moon seat on the crown of my head,
Through your great kindness, having taken me as a disciple,
Grant me the accomplishment of the body, speech and mind of the Buddhas.
So, good evening, and good morning, and good afternoon, everybody. And today, I’m very happy to do this teaching, for all around the world. You know, from our mainland China, and then also in India, and also in Taiwan, you know, all the different Asian parts of it, and then also all the European and South American, North American, so we are coming together, which is good for me. So, I don’t have to repeat so many times, you know. So, that makes easier, otherwise, I have to repeat several times. And sometime when you are a little bit exhausted, and then, you know, it becomes less explanation automatically. So, I’m very happy that I can focus with full energy and dedicating to all of you.
Okay, so, I hope that all the participants, I hope that you have watched the last videos, so that you could understand where we are, and what is the topic. And those who have joined for the first time, I will just give you a quick summary.
And the purpose of this teaching, is basically, you know, all of us when we are introduced to Tibetan Buddhism, and we are very much carried right away into the direction of ‘Have to receive empowerment’, or either it goes to the direction where people say, ‘Oh, I don’t need empowerment. Everything is emptiness.’ And then that is a very dangerous way of practicing. Because then you are just simply assuming everything, you know. You’re just, spirituality, you’re just based on assumption only, not really a clear structure. And that can be very dangerous over the time.
Like an example, like in the time of the Buddha, in the time of bodhisattvas and all the great masters, there can be a circumstance where they can be one master, whether they can be one student, and then the one empowerment is enough for rest of the life. One practice is enough for rest of the life and so on, you know.
Like an example, the biography of Lord Buddha Shakyamuni, you know, Theravada says that, the Buddha was never transformed into Kalachakra. So, they believe that the Buddha is what we see. And that’s it. But as a Tibetan Buddhist practice, or the tantric practitioner, you can say that we believe much more than that, you know. Buddha transformed himself into the Kalachakra form, and then teaching all the Tantrayana, and then also, creating this Tantrayana path.
But it is not just a shortcut. It is for the individual who already have some sort of development, you know. So, therefore, it is very important I find that to have a little bit of ground as a foundation as a practitioner. And the more you have a solid ground, the faster you make the improvement.
The fragile the ground is, even you can make a great leap forward, you know, like an example, great, you know, saving time and thinking that ‘I want to receive this secret practice and that high practice and this high empowerment.’ At the end of the day, when you go in that high speed, what happens is that you are surrounded with the lack of understanding of oneself, you have lack of understanding what is Mahayana, you have lack of understanding of what is Tantrayana, you know, so you have lack of understanding of What is the meaning of love and compassion. Because you kind of push all that away from far away before.
So, therefore, the more we understand about the Mahayana and then also the cycle of suffering, and then the more we can understand Tantrayana over the time by itself, you know, without using any strength or force upon ourselves.
And this Lamrim is very beautiful. The reason why it is very beautiful is because all these different methods, or different explanations, it is kept under, like an example of one cycle of meditation, two cycle meditation, three cycle meditation. So, the cycle means, you read that one line or two lines, and you think about that, think about that, meditate, think about that, meditate, think about that.
So, that applies to the reality of the suffering, right? And then also the reality of the impermanence, the reality of the Samsara, the reality of the preciousness of the human life, and also the vulnerability of human being as a human being, you know, and then also not just that, examining the very existence, the cycle of life, of the heaven, the demigods and the human realm, and the hunger ghosts realm, and the animal realm, and then the hell realm.
So, there are so many different details about that, where you can truly reflect upon oneself. Not every single part of the cycle has to wake you up. Not that. It’s just that, some of them can really reflect to you out of thousands of them, out of hundreds of them. So, that is our aim. So, you don’t have to feel motivated, each cycle of meditation or analytical meditation. You just, out of many, have few that can truly benefit you in the long run. So, that’s something that we have to keep in our mind. And that is why the Lamrim is very important.
And also the Lamrim is written by Taranatha. And, you know, he is a great master around like the 14th, 15th century. So, I’m very big fond of him as a master, as a writer, as teachings, all the instructions. I feel sense of openness, sense of frankness. And I find that very important when you read the instruction, you can feel their personality, their approach, their love, their caring towards the next generation, whoever may be reading. So, therefore, I have chosen this text. So, these are the reasons.
Teaching on Stages in the Path of Illusion, Lesson 4, Part 1
3rd Dec. 2021