Excerpts > Meditation

Mahamudra Please

Thrangu Sekhar Retreat Centre, Nepal, November 2022

A reply to a student’s request for advanced meditation instruction. I sincerely wish for you to know Mahamudra. Perhaps I feel a greater sense of urgency about it than even you do yourself. You may wonder why I teach meditation when I travel abroad, but not to you here in the retreat centre. Well, truth […]

Integrating the Practice

Thrangu Sekhar Retreat, Nepal, Summer 2021

It’s very important that right from the beginning we link our dharma practice and our everyday experience as much as possible. If we continue to see our practice as something we merely imagine as we sit on the cushion, unrelated to the rest of our experience that we call ‘real life’, we will never come […]

Meditation Suicide

Thrangu Sekhar Retreat Centre, Nepal, 7th February 2018

If you are serious about learning mahamudra or dzogchen and you think you will have the opportunity to receive such authentic meditation instructions from a qualified lama, you should avoid reading any books or texts on these topics beforehand. To do so would be to commit meditation suicide. The vocabulary from such books that will […]

Recognising the Nature of Mind

Thrangu Sekhar Retreat Centre, Nepal, 10th September 2021

In its simplest form, to recognise the nature of mind is to recognise the thoughts that run through our head and our habitual ways of thinking. It’s impossible to recognise the true nature of mind without first recognising the grosser nature of mind. The role of the lama is to first introduce us to the […]

Look Before You Chuck

Thrangu Sekhar Retreat Centre, Nepal, 27th August 2019

If we regard our afflictions as something like garbage to be thrown out and gotten rid of, then we won’t look at them very carefully. As soon as we notice an affliction, we will immediately want to get rid of it, won’t we? Taking this approach our practice will become more and more difficult and […]

The Measure of our Practice

Thrangu Sekhar Retreat Centre, Nepal, Summer 2021

Our normal way of being will show us how our practice is going, not how long we can sit on the cushion.

How to Approach Formal Practice Sessions

Meditation Retreat, Kagyu Samye Ling, Scotland, 10th Oct 2016

In general we should set aside a particular time for formal practice, and keep to it very conscientiously. Within the sessions we should apply the methods taught for clearing agitation and dullness, and do our very best not to fall under their sway. The level of concentration and care with which we should try to […]

The Liberation Stories of the Kagyu Masters – Day 13

Online Teaching from Thrangu Sekhar Retreat Centre, Nepal, 13 June 2020

Many people see mahamudra and dzogchen to be rather easy. But the early masters of Kagyu lineages didn’t see them to be easy, just look how hard they worked and what they put themselves through to attain them. For example Naropa was already a pandita, had advanced practice generation stage practice, and even had visions […]

You can’t build without bricks

Thrangu Sekhar Retreat Centre, Nepal, 16 July 2020

You can’t practise that which doesn’t appear in your mind. If you are to practise developing loving-kindness, for instance, there is a particular order to it, and this order applies to any practice. Sticking with the example of love though, you first have to learn what love is. You have to be able to distinguish […]

Understanding Meditation

Thrangu Sekhar Retreat Centre, Nepal, 16th May 2020

To understand meditation we must understand how our mind fabricates. When we understand the fabricated we automatically understand the unfabricated; then we are well on the way to proper meditation. At the moment most of us are stuck in the loop of fabricating what we think is an unfabricated state.

The Ways of Practitioners – Part 1

Thrangu Sekhar Retreat Center, Nepal, 16th April 2020

If to talk about or communicate your meditation to someone you need to rely on words like ‘the nature of mind’, ‘clear light’, ’spacious’, ‘peaceful’, ‘blissful’, ‘emptiness’, or even need to talk of thoughts and mind, there is probably an issue in your understanding of meditation. If we were to sit listening to two meditators […]

Off to the Mountains

Thrangu Sekhar Retreat Centre, Nepal, 12 December 2019

We often see new Buddhists, or old Buddhists who have not studied much dharma, getting ahead of themselves and making plans to run off to the mountains. This shows a lack of understanding and experience of dharma. In order to practise alone in solitude, and to be able to practice properly, we must have first […]

Dharma-Drugs – Just Say No

Teaching on the fourth day (19 Oct) of the one-week meditation retreat with Hwayue Foundation, 2019

The worst thing you can do in meditation is to hanker after feelings of peace and bliss. Expectations are always followed by disappointments. Feelings of peace, bliss and deep well-being do not come to us very easily (and they’re not all that much use to us anyway.) But if you do get a taste, a […]

The Cushion Is Our Training Ground

Teaching on the third day (18 Oct) of the one-week meditation retreat with Hwayue Foundation, 2019

In meditation the direction we are moving towards is that of non-doing. We already have so much that we need to do in our lives, and if meditation is seen as being something else that we must do, it becomes just another task to add to our to-do list. It will become a burden, a […]

Laziness is to not look at your mind!

Teaching on the first day of the one-week meditation retreat with Hwayue Foundation, Taiwan, 2019

Only those who have faith and who are diligent can learn real meditation; those who are lazy will never get it. Some people think that only lazy people come to meditate, while the diligent read books. In fact, it’s the opposite. Lazy people study books; diligent people try their best to meditate. I say because […]