Now, we come back to the topic of devotion. In order to make an improvement in your practice, you need devotion.
Like myself, my personal experience with my guru, Situ Rinpoche, the one who recognized me, in my most difficult times, or in my very good times, he is always there, where I can take refuge, where I can just go and ask for advice. That is a genuine sign of a true master. And then devotion comes by itself.
We have the expectation that when we think about devotion, we think that it has to be a very sweet and soft and gentle journey. We think like that. We assume this, but it is not true.
For example, if you look at the story of Milarepa and Marpa Lotsawa. Milarepa had a constant reflection about the samsara, he couldn’t be patient and be comfortable. But he had this pure, genuine devotion to Marpa Lotsawa. Since he was patient with the pure devotion, he continued to receive all the great teachings, and then he became the greatest Tibetan master in history.
So devotion is not always a beautiful journey. First of all, devotion is not something you should start with, and once you have devotion, it’s not something that can always be exciting and happy all the time. It is an imperfect journey. But you, yourself having a pure devotion to the Buddha Dharma, is very important. Then like His Holiness said all the time, “Without a blind faith, with a sense of intellectual wisdom, understanding from yourself is important”. So, that’s that.
With love and respect from Kalu Rinpoche
Aug. 2nd, 2019
The First North America Shangpa Kagyu Monlam