Aug 23

Kalu Rinpoche | We have to start from our imperfection base

How would it sound if I tell you “Be the Buddha”?

You cannot. If I say “Be the Buddha right now, you say you have a nature of the mind, right? Be the Buddha.” That is not a method. You can be Buddha when you have a realised state of mind. It’s telling somebody to “be poor” you cannot “be poor”, you cannot “be rich”. It’s like telling somebody that doesn’t exist.

So you cannot just say “be that”. You have to find a method. In life you have to find a method. In Dharma practice, you have to find a method. So state of mind of having no expectations, having no fear, it’s not a method. It’s a some kind of experience and level of realization that will develop gradually. So the example is, if I tell you “you be Buddha right now”, you cannot be Buddha right now. You still have a cloudy mind. I still have a cloudy mind. Right?

So therefore we need to practice acceptance of our own imperfection, willingness to practice Dharma. So therefore do not misunderstand that. Beyond expectation, beyond fearful state of mind, that will occur once you do some retreat and practice, slowly, gradually.

But that is not a method and that is not something that you should apply in the beginning. Because there’s nothing to apply with. Just like you cannot pretend to be a Buddha. So simple as that. You cannot pretend to be a Buddha. So you have to, in order to be enlightened being, or to be Buddha, we have to start from our imperfection base. And that is the acceptance of our own distraction, acceptance of our own wrongdoing. And being the witness and the judgement of our own action. And starting with that level.

And if there’s some wrongdoing and distraction within our own practice, then making a pure confession, right away in this very moment. You don’t have to do 100-syllable, just do the short syllable “OM BENZA SATO HUNG, I genuinely confess for my distraction”. With this genuine confession, then again you reconnect to the Dharma practice.

And that’s how you have to see your distraction. Not something very light. If you see it very light, then it becomes a habit. Then you will have no more principle left to apply it in the long run, so it’s like that.


Kalu Rinpoche – Extracts from teachings
Saturday 25th July 2020 in la Boulaye (France).