Lopon Andre – first talk – morning 9/19
Begin with the right intention. The best intention we could have for anything we do on the land- meditating, studying, or hearing a talk is – being with the benefit for all sentient beings. May we all work with our own minds to be a cooling oasis for all sentient beings, to free all sentient beings from suffering, and ourselves as sentient beings from suffering. We call this raising bodhicitta: a sense of my intention is “I am expanding outward so I am working not for just my own benefit, but for the benefit of all.”
I also like to remember those who came before us, without whom we wouldn’t be studying Buddhism in an air-conditioned room. Going back to Shakyamuni Buddha 2500 years ago, all the way up to His Holiness Mindrolling Trinchen Rinpoche, who died in 2008, and of course His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and of course our dear Mindrolling Jetsün Khandro Rinpoche, who is director of our center. Just a sense of connection to lineage and a sense of connection to who we might be appreciative of. Continue reading
(Originally posted Friday, September 5, 2008)
I’ve been asked by a few people to talk about ‘The Four Reminders”, which are in the Tibetan (/Bhutanese/Nepalese/etc.) tradition the very bedrock of the Buddhist path. Everything else is built upon these. as my teacher Khandro Rinpoche has said many times, “Any obstacles that can’t be overcome, it’s simply because one has not contemplated the Four Reminders enough.”
For you non-buddhists, this will give you a good overview of the core of what we practice.
So, here they are. At the top of each, I will include the traditional passage from the Karma Kagyu and the Drigung Kagyu describing each of the four. I will also include how -I- contemplate them daily, in hopes that some of you might be able to adapt it to your own practice lives.
This is often the introductory teaching given at the very beginning. It is specifically for students who want to be Buddhists, do ngondro, etc. (The fourth reminder is also the first noble truth.)
Suffering of Samsara
Due to ignorance, craving and becoming
In the realm of men, gods and the three inferior spheres,
The five realms beings revolve foolishly,
Like the turning of the potter’s wheel.
All contaminated aggregates are causes of suffering
And are possessed with many torments.
Even that which appears pleasurable is a deceiver.
The three realms of existence are like a pit of fire.
Yet, we ‘who are filled with attachment do not realize this.
Guru, embodiment of the Three Jewels, look upon us with compassion.
Bestow your blessings so that we give rise to the mind of renunciation.