Blind Faith

Discussion in a local Buddhist study group in Taipei, Taiwan, 24 October 2017

Student Question: How should we respond if some of our family members challenge our belief in Buddhism as being just blind faith?   Rinpoche’s Answer: The way I think about it is, if our families say that our belief in Buddhism is just blind faith, they are right. I’d tell them they’re spot on and […]

Choose well the object of your devotion

Teaching on 'The Precious Garland of the Supreme Path' to the retreat staff, Thrangu Sekhar Retreat Center, Nepal

The Sanskrit word ‘guru’ translated as ‘lama’ in Tibetan, has the sense of weightiness; meaning the individual is laden with excellent qualities. These qualities have nothing to do with a person’s position or status, nor with their level of education, but are principally concerned with the way they think: their renunciation, bodhichitta and view of […]

Buddhism: A Quest for Truth

Thrangu Sekhar Retreat Centre, Nepal, 14 March 2018

The true study of Buddhism is a quest to establish the truth; to ascertain the basic reality of things. When that happens for someone, their intelligence and understanding blossom; they become clear about the whys and wherefores of life. This intelligence and insight permeates and transforms their whole perspective and behaviour.

Why the Four Thoughts kick ass!

Kagyu Samye Ling Zimbabwe, 10 September 2017

Meditation is to leave the mind just as it is, relaxed and easy, without thinking too much. But we find this incredibly difficult to do. As soon as we sit down and relax, we feel we have a bit of free time and start thinking and making plans. It is for this reason that when […]

The Lama is the Dharma

HwaYue Foundation, Taiwan, 21 October 2017

Once you have examined a lama in whom you have faith and decided to put yourself in their hands, then from that point on don’t worry too much about what Dharma they’re teaching. If the lama you rely on is good, then whatever they teach will be directed at remedying your faults and wrong ways […]

My Lamas

Teaching on the Precious Ornament of Liberation at HwaYue Foundation, Taiwan, 21 October 2017

Gampopa said, ‘Rely on a holy lama endowed with realisation and compassion.’ This tells us that a genuine lama is someone with realisation, who has wisdom and compassion, and directs all their efforts to teaching and guiding students on the path to liberation. Such a lama is a holy lama. When I was staying in […]

Buddha is not outside of your mind

First UK Kagyu Monlam 2018, Samye Ling, UK

Most beginners see the three jewels as an outer object, as something separate from ‘me’. This is the beginner’s view, and it will not lead us to Liberation. The basic Buddhist view is that the Three Jewels are not something that truly exists externally. Buddha, Sang-Gye in Tibetan, shows us, or demonstrates to us our […]

Keep it simple

Kagyu Samye Ling Zimbabwe, 11 September 2017

When it comes to meditation we should keep things simple right from the start. We shouldn’t have too many ideas within, nor too much clutter and stuff we think we need without. If we don’t keep things simple, we might find ourselves in a situation where we want to meditate but, lacking some ‘vital’ item, […]

Growing into a Dharma person

Advice given to western students at the start of the six-year retreat programme at Thrangu Sekhar Retreat Center, Nepal, 13 January 2015

We all feel that we have to become good Dharma practitioners. And what it means to be a good dharma practitioner is to have a view that is different from normal worldly views. We simply can’t become dharma practitioners whilst maintaining a worldly view, because that can only take us along the path of samsara, […]

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