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    28th Feb –Vajra Vidhya Institute, Sarnath.

    Day 7 Report
    On the final day of his weeklong Spring Teachings, the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, shared some thoughts about his own life. He began the session by openly reflecting on his life situation, compared to the vast accomplishments of the previous Karmapas.
    "From my own perspective, I'm growing older and older but I have this feeling that up until now I still have not really done much to bring benefit to Buddhism and sentient beings, or anything to be satisfied with. When I look at the activities of the previous Karmapas, from a very early age they all did vast activity for the benefit of the teachings and for the benefit of sentient beings. Putting aside whether or not I can be compared to the other Karmapas, but as a follower of the Karmapas I still do not really feel that I have been able to do the same amount of benefit for beings and the teachings."
    The very name 'Karmapa' contains the seeds of vast accomplishments within it, since the name means 'the one who accomplishes enlightened activities', or 'the embodiment of all the Buddha's activities.' And yet, the Gyalwang Karmapa said, he personally is surrounded by many difficulties and problems.
    "I have the name of the Karmapa, and so I need to fulfill the role of the Karmapa and do the activity of a Karmapa. But performing the activity of a Karmapa is no joke. It is not easy. It is extremely difficult to do. In particular, it is extremely difficult for an ordinary being who has all the faults in his being to be able to try to perform the activities of Buddhas, who have removed all of their faults. This is extremely difficult. Although I'm still young I'm surrounded by many difficulties and many problems. Personally my life is very difficult."
    And yet, despite all these difficulties, the Gyalwang Karmapa expressed his innate aspiration to be able to continue to help the beings of this world.
    "The Buddhas and the Bodhisattvas, and especially the previous Karmapas, have taken care of me with their compassion and their great affection, and they have given me in particular this special opportunity to be able to do something for the benefit of beings and the Buddhist teachings. There are many people who expressed that they feel like I am necessary, and that I am of benefit to them. And so for that reason I have the aspiration that I may be able to stay in this world-realm and be able to accomplish something of benefit for Buddhism and for sentient beings."
    With this pure aspiration to be able to benefit beings to the full extent of his extraordinary capabilities, the Gyalwang Karmapa drew the Spring Teachings to a close. "I don't know whether or not these teachings have been beneficial for you," he said, "but they have been beneficial for me. When you teach the dharma to others it sort of encourages and inspires you yourself. You have all been coming here to the teachings and many people in different countries have been watching and taking great interest, and I'd like to thank all of you very much."


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    Vajra Vidhya Institute, Sarnath.

    2013/2/21-28



    Day 1 Report
    On the 11th day of the 1st month of the Year of the Water Snake, in the holy land of Sarnath, very close to the exact site where the Buddha Shakyamuni taught his first five disciples more than 2500 years ago and thereby set into motion the entire Buddhist teaching tradition, the Gyalwang Karmapa once again turned the wheel of dharma.
    Coinciding with an annual dharma seminar at Vajra Vidya Institute being led by Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche, the Gyalwang Karmapa commenced a week-long series of teachings on a text which has been one of his personal favorites since a young age, called 'Tri Thung Gyatsa' or 'One Hundred Short Instructions.'
    The text, composed by the glorious 8th Karmapa Mikyo Dorje, comprises a treasury of pith instructions spanning the entire path to enlightenment. Each instruction is skillfully crafted so that the reader can enter the text at any point to find a gem of the 8th Karmapa's heart advice and enlightened wisdom. "From time to time I myself take a look through these 100 short instructions, and I really feel that they are very beneficial for me," the Gyalwang Karmapa said. "All of these instructions are given for serious practitioners," he continued, "and sometimes they are extremely forthright. They go straight to the heart of the matter."
    Deciding that it would be beneficial to focus on one or two of the instructions contained within the collection, the Gyalwang Karmapa chose to begin the teachings with an instruction on 'Rules for Karma Kamtsang Meditators'. From this somewhat abstract title, he then began by emphasizing the need to contemplate death and impermanence in order to generate a sense of renunciation from worldly concerns, as a necessary precondition to genuine dharma practice. The Gyalwang Karmapa urged those gathered to use their own intelligence in understanding and practicing the essence of Buddhism, rather than just blindly following traditions or customs.
    "The essence of Buddhism is being able to distinguish what it is that we need to do from what it is that we need to give up. It is taking up virtue and giving up non-virtue. We need to identify what it is that will bring benefit to ourselves and others, and then we need to do that. We also need to identify what it is that will harm ourselves and others, and then we need to give that up. So you can condense it all into doing what is beneficial and giving up what is harmful. We need to know what the essence of dharma is, and then bring it into our lives."
    He stressed the importance of not delaying the practice of the dharma, but rather taking the teachings on death and impermanence to heart and allowing them to motivate our practice in the present moment.
    "If we are going to practice the dharma, this is what it means and we need do this now in our lives. We might think that we have our whole lives to do it, but we need to start doing it from today. This is not something that we should think, 'Oh I can start tomorrow, or I can start the next day, or I can do this when I'm older.' We need to do dharma practice now. We cannot postpone this. We need to start it right now."
    As thousands of the Gyalwang Karmapa's students around the world logged onto the live webcast of the teachings simultaneously from all corners of the globe, this served as a timely reminder that the vast enlightened activity of the Gyalwang Karmapa cannot be limited by time and space. The Gyalwang Karmapa's skillful use of modern technology enables him to directly reach and teach in accordance with the needs of those both near and far. "There are many people who are not able to come to these teachings in person," he commented, "so it seems that the best way to bring benefit to those people is to have a live webcast. This is very beneficial for them." Live translations were offered in seven languages, including: English, Hindi, Chinese, Spanish, Polish, German, and French.
    The Gyalwang Karmapa's Spring Teachings continue daily until 28 February 2013, with the exception of 25 February (Chotrul Duchen) when other activities are scheduled to take place.


    Day 2 Report
    Beginning several hours before the scheduled teaching time, hundreds of people began to gather at the Vajra Vidya Institute gompa for the second day of the Gyalwang Karmapa's Spring Teachings. With Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche once again in attendance, together with Tulkus and Khenpos, monks and nuns, and international and local devotees, the gompa was quickly filled to capacity. A large group of students from the nearby Central University of Tibetan Studies gathered, while a growing webcast audience also tuned in live from across the world, all eager to absorb the Gyalwang Karmapa's vast and profound wisdom.
    As the rain of dharma continued for a second day, the Gyalwang Karmapa opened the teaching by once again reiterating the urgency to practice the dharma right now, in this very moment.
    "We need to practice the dharma from now. We need to do it on this very seat, in this very session. It's right now that we need to begin the dharma. If we postpone it, if we think to ourselves I'm going to do it tomorrow or the next day, then we will not be able to really practice the dharma well. It's important to understand this."
    From this urgent call to practice, the Gyalwang Karmapa then turned his attention to making sure that we do it properly. He observed that there are many people who wish to practice the dharma, but don't truly know how. By focusing mainly on the external appearances of our practice without carefully checking our mind, we can easily fall into the trap of spiritual materialism.
    "Sometimes when we practice dharma we think that we need to show some sort of external or physical sign of it. We pay a lot of attention to the rituals and these actions of our body and speech. This is practicing dharma when we're focusing outside. But instead what we need to do is turn our attention inwards. We need to see whether what we're doing is functioning as an antidote to the afflictions or not. We need to see whether we are taming our mind or not. We need to see whether our mind is improving, getting kinder, or not. If we don't look at it in this way then there's no benefit to doing these actions – we think that we are trying to do the dharma, but actually we are just making a show with our body and speech. We are putting on appearances, and that's all we really take an interest in. And the moment that happens, this becomes spiritual materialism."
    Expanding his focus to the wider twenty-first century world we inhabit, the Gyalwang Karmapa touched on both the ways it shapes us as people and the ways that we as individuals in turn can shape it. Observing the growing trend towards materialism in the modern world, he encouraged the audience to look beyond the idea that happiness can be found outwards in external things.
    "These days in the 21st century it's a very materialistic time. Most of the time, we don't really know what true happiness is. Many people have the idea that external things and external conditions will bring them happiness, and will lead them to the real meaning. But when we think about material things, the more we have of these things the more disturbances we have. The more difficulties we have. Things get more and more problematic. We have more and more busyness, and what happens then is that we lose ourselves. We lose our nature, what really is there."
    Continuing his exploration of our place in the modern world, the Gyalwang Karmapa skillfully reminded each person of the important role they play in shaping an increasingly interconnected and ever-more deeply interdependent world.
    "In this Information Age people are developing closer and closer connections with each other. All the people in the world are seeing that they have greater mutual connections. It has become very clear to us that these are deeper and stronger connections. When we think about our own good acts and wrong acts, we can see more clearly how they have an effect on the world. We can see that the individual things that we do are connected to the benefit or the harm of the world. They are deeply connected to the happiness and suffering that is in the world. The good and bad acts of one person are becoming the good and bad of the world. When we examine the good and bad that we do, we can see that it is becoming even more profound and even more vast. It's the good and the bad that people do that determine on a fundamental level if there is peace or happiness in the world. It's very tightly connected."
    Recordings of the Gyalwang Karmapa's Spring Teachings are available on YouTube in English and Chinese, and are also available for download the day following each teaching session. The live webcast steam can now also be accessed on all mobile devices, including iPad, iPhone, Android, etc.
    Day 3 Report
    On the third day of his Spring Teachings the Gyalwang Karmapa began by reflecting on the sacredness of the teaching space, and it's preciousness to him personally. Arising out of the vast vision of its Abbot, Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche, Vajra Vidya Institute is nestled at the edge of Sarnath's Deer Park, the sacred place where the Buddha Shakyamuni first turned the wheel of dharma. The towering Dhamek Stupa, constructed over a millennia ago to venerate the Buddha's monumental act of teaching the dharma, is only a short walk away from where the Gyalwang Karmapa's own teachings are taking place, in Vajra Vidya Institute's temple. "When I come to this temple it's like I have a special feeling that arises here," he said. "Since the time I came to India, for the few small things that I have done in my life they've all started here, in this monastery's temple. It's like this place has been the starting point for everything that I have done."
    Returning once again to the theme of the previous day, the Gyalwang Karmapa continued his guidance on how to practice the dharma correctly, until we eventually reach a point where the dharma and our life have merged.
    "To really practice the dharma we have to understand the reasons for the dharma, and we have to have full dedication and interest in the dharma. When we have that, only at that point are our dharma practice and the individual who is practicing the dharma no longer separate from each other. That is when the dharma, and the individual who is practicing it, become the same in flavor. That is the point when our dharma practice and this life become part of each other and they share the same nature."
    Moreover, as dharma practitioners we also need to truly understand and accept impermanence. We need to develop our ability to be relaxed and open to changes as they naturally occur, accepting situations as they arise around us. Likening the process of change to the natural and beautiful play of the four seasons, the Gyalwang Karmapa reminded those gathered that when things change they can be even better.
    "When, because of external or internal circumstances there comes some sort of a change, we need to be able to go along with that change. So whatever happens, we go with the flow of events. If we are able to do this, then in our own mind we can be more relaxed. We can be more expansive. When we go along with that we can be comfortable, relaxed and spacious in our minds. If we are able to do this then we are able to be happy, and to have a comfortable and content life."
    The Gyalwang Karmapa then urged his students to uncomplicate their worlds, by keeping a simple outlook on life. Delivering profound guidance with skillful simplicity, he emphasized the importance of living grounded in the present moment, and of seeing the good that is already right in front of our eyes.
    "The best thing is to be in the present. It's better if we don't have too high hopes for the past or the future situations. It's better just to stay in the present. Whatever is right in front of our eyes, we need to be able to see the good in it. If we can see the good in it, then good things will be able to occur from that. I really feel that it helps to try to just have a simple outlook on life."
    The Gyalwang Karmapa ended the session by sharing one of his own personal strategies for dealing with problems when they arise. "When I have difficulties," he said, "I feel like sometimes it's good to just close the door, relax a little bit, let my mind be a little bit looser and more spacious. I feel that this is helpful, and this is probably something that will be helpful for you as well."
    Day 4 Report
    On the fourth day of the Spring Teachings the Gyalwang Karmapa turned the focus firmly inwards: if we look inside our own minds, a wishfulfilling jewel is already waiting. No matter how long we may search elsewhere for it, in the end we come back to what was already present within ourselves from the very beginning.
    "Within our beings, all of us, there are these uncontrived, natural roots of virtue, these instinctive seeds of innate goodness. We still look for something outside ourselves, not knowing how priceless and how important what we already have is. We need to look at these seeds of virtue in our mind as if they were as rare as a Buddha."
    By first being able to see the innate treasure already present in our own minds, we can then work to develop it further and further. "We need to take those virtuous seeds within ourselves and increase them," he said. "We need to elicit the power that is naturally there and work with that until we achieve the ultimate state of awakening."
    From exploring the innermost essence of our mind, the Gyalwang Karmapa then shifted the focus back outwards again, by reminding those gathered that sometimes we need to look from the perspective of others to see the full value of our lives. Using the metaphor of a net, in which each individual life is completely connected and completely interdependent with others, we must also be able to see how others find our lives meaningful.
    "When we are trying to figure out what the essence or the meaning of life really is, then it's not just a question of looking inside oneself. Sometimes we have to look outwards to see the meaning we hold for others. We have to look in all different directions to be able to see what is good about our life."
    Leaving the audience with this beautiful perspective on interdependence, the Gyalwang Karmapa told those gathered that he would continue the next teaching session with a different instruction from the 'Tri Thung Gyatsa' text, on devotion.
    The Gyalwang Karmapa's Spring Teachings continue until February 28. In addition to the seven languages already offered, live translation is now also available in Russian.
    Day 5 Report
    As the Spring Teachings entered their fifth day, the Gyalwang Karmapa began to explore the role of devotion in our practice. Teaching from a new instruction within the 'Tri Thung Gyatsa' text, he began by explaining that devotion is critical for our dharma practice, particularly within the Kagyu tradition. And yet, it isn't all that easy to correctly develop devotion.
    First we need to understand what devotion means. Drawing a clear distinction between faith and devotion, the Gyalwang Karmapa said, "When we think about faith, then faith is like a feeling we have in our minds. But devotion isn't just a feeling. It's not just an emotion. It's something that we put into practice with our body and speech."
    To illustrate his point, the Gyalwang Karmapa then explained the meaning inherent within the Tibetan term for devotion, mo-gü. The first syllable of the word means to have great longing, he explained, while the second syllable means actually doing things with our body and speech. Only by bringing these two elements together can we fully understand the active nature of devotion, which is more than a mere emotion or feeling. Rather, devotion means an act that we do with all three spheres of our being – our body, speech, and mind.
    The Gyalwang Karmapa then touched on the vital role played by the qualified teacher. When correct understanding from the side of the student meets with great compassion from the side of the teacher, we must open the door of our devotion in order to receive their blessings.
    "The student needs to have faith and longing, and if this faith and longing come together then I don't think that sort of a student will have any difficulty finding a genuine, authentic Lama. The reason is that all the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas are ready at all six times of day and night to do things to benefit sentient beings. They're all ready and waiting. If you have both faith and longing then they'll all come rushing towards you to help you. You just have to open that door of faith and devotion."
    During the session the Gyalwang Karmapa also returned once more to a core theme which he has emphasized throughout the Spring Teachings – how to practice the dharma with our whole being.
    "When we say practice, it's not all that helpful for us just to hear the dharma, or listen to the dharma. It's not all that helpful for us to develop some kind of understanding about the dharma. What we really need to do is join the dharma with our own being, and then we need to practice that over and over again. Joining our being with the dharma, so that we can become habituated and familiarized with it – this is what is most important."
    Day 6 Report
    On the sixth day of his Spring Teachings the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, cut straight to the core of an issue that is vital not only for the sustainability of our contemporary world, but also within our individual lives as Buddhist practitioners. Exploring the topic from many different angles, the Gyalwang Karmapa discussed his views on whether Buddhist practitioners should eat meat or not, and if so, when and how it may be acceptable to do so.
    "A few years ago at one of the Kagyu Monlams I spoke about the topic of vegetarianism, giving up eating meat. You could say it was an announcement, but it was really like making a suggestion. Since then many years have passed, and over the years I've heard people say various things. Some people have even said, 'Oh, Ogyen Trinley Dorje says that if you don't give up eating meat then you're not a Kagyupa.' Now, it actually wasn't me who said that. It was the 8th Karmapa Mikyo Dorje who said that. So it wasn't my idea, and it's not like I said you better give up meat or else you're not a Kagyupa."
    In fact, there are different ways we can interpret the 8th Karmapa's advice, the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa continued. If we take a looser interpretation of Mikyo Dorje's words, then by eating meat you can say that you're not a truly pure Kagyu practitioner. "There are many great Kagyu masters who have eaten meat, so it is very difficult to merely say that eating meat means that you have faults. But eating meat is something that all of us who practice the dharma need to think about very carefully."
    The Gyalwang Karmapa, himself a pure vegetarian, then turned to his own life as an example. "When I spoke about this, I was primarily thinking about the way I lead my own life. I can't really do anything about how other people lead their lives, but in terms of thinking about myself there are some reasons for this." He then explained two key reasons that he personally does not eat meat. The first reason is the intense suffering that the animals who are killed go through. Every single day millions of animals are killed to feed us, and many are subjected to terrible conditions to provide us with food. Just a few days previously the Gyalwang Karmapa had shared a story of how, as a child in Tibet, when animals were killed for his family's food he felt unbearable, pure compassion for them.
    The second reason he doesn't eat meat, the Gyalwang Karmapa continued, is because of his Mahayana training in seeing all sentient beings as his mothers. "We say I am going to do everything I can to free sentient beings from suffering. We say I am going to do this. We make the commitment. We take the vow. Once we have taken this vow, if then, without thinking anything about it, we just go ahead and eat meat, then that is not okay. It is something that we need to think about very carefully."
    The Gyalwang Karmapa then acknowledged that there are some circumstances in which eating meat is allowed, or even necessary. He explained that within the Buddhist Vinaya, or rules for monks and nuns, eating meat is allowed mainly when one is ill, but only if three conditions are met: we must not have seen, heard, or thought that the animal was killed particularly for us to eat it. Meat is allowed when a person is sick, the Gyalwang Karmapa clarified, or for those people who need more nourishment and have great difficulty nourishing themselves without it.
    "But when you eat meat in these situations you should not just eat it in an ordinary sort of way," he continued. "You first need to meditate on compassion for one session—compassion for all sentient beings in general, but especially for this particular animal whose flesh is in front of you. Then you should recite the mantras of the Buddha's name, as well as mantras that can help purify misdeeds. Only then should you start eating the meat."
    Yet his guidance did not stop there. Returning to the Mahayana training of seeing all sentient beings as mothers, the Gyalwang Karmapa explained further. "When you start eating the meat you have to think about it in a particular way. You should think of it as being the meat of your mother or your father or your child. You should think of eating it in that way, and so it's when you think of it as being your mother's or your child's meat, then that is when you can eat it."
    We must also have a pure motivation when we eat the meat, the Gyalwang Karmapa continued. "We should not eat the meat in order to enjoy it, because it is delicious. We should not eat it because we want to enjoy the great flavor and savor what we are eating. Instead we should eat the meat only in order to keep ourselves alive."
    To avoid any misunderstanding, the Gyalwang Karmapa repeated the need for each individual to reflect deeply on the issue: "Now, I did not say that we need to immediately give up eating meat. I understand that it's difficult to give up eating meat. But I did say that we need to think about it carefully. When we eat meat, if we are someone who has entered the path of the Mahayana, someone who has begun to think of all sentient beings as their father, their mother, or their child, in terms of someone who practices in this way it's really something that we need to consider very carefully."
    Day 7 Report
    On the final day of his weeklong Spring Teachings, the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, shared some thoughts about his own life. He began the session by openly reflecting on his life situation, compared to the vast accomplishments of the previous Karmapas.
    "From my own perspective, I'm growing older and older but I have this feeling that up until now I still have not really done much to bring benefit to Buddhism and sentient beings, or anything to be satisfied with. When I look at the activities of the previous Karmapas, from a very early age they all did vast activity for the benefit of the teachings and for the benefit of sentient beings. Putting aside whether or not I can be compared to the other Karmapas, but as a follower of the Karmapas I still do not really feel that I have been able to do the same amount of benefit for beings and the teachings."
    The very name 'Karmapa' contains the seeds of vast accomplishments within it, since the name means 'the one who accomplishes enlightened activities', or 'the embodiment of all the Buddha's activities.' And yet, the Gyalwang Karmapa said, he personally is surrounded by many difficulties and problems.
    "I have the name of the Karmapa, and so I need to fulfill the role of the Karmapa and do the activity of a Karmapa. But performing the activity of a Karmapa is no joke. It is not easy. It is extremely difficult to do. In particular, it is extremely difficult for an ordinary being who has all the faults in his being to be able to try to perform the activities of Buddhas, who have removed all of their faults. This is extremely difficult. Although I'm still young I'm surrounded by many difficulties and many problems. Personally my life is very difficult."
    And yet, despite all these difficulties, the Gyalwang Karmapa expressed his innate aspiration to be able to continue to help the beings of this world.
    "The Buddhas and the Bodhisattvas, and especially the previous Karmapas, have taken care of me with their compassion and their great affection, and they have given me in particular this special opportunity to be able to do something for the benefit of beings and the Buddhist teachings. There are many people who expressed that they feel like I am necessary, and that I am of benefit to them. And so for that reason I have the aspiration that I may be able to stay in this world-realm and be able to accomplish something of benefit for Buddhism and for sentient beings."
    With this pure aspiration to be able to benefit beings to the full extent of his extraordinary capabilities, the Gyalwang Karmapa drew the Spring Teachings to a close. "I don't know whether or not these teachings have been beneficial for you," he said, "but they have been beneficial for me. When you teach the dharma to others it sort of encourages and inspires you yourself. You have all been coming here to the teachings and many people in different countries have been watching and taking great interest, and I'd like to thank all of you very much."




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    1 March 2013 –Vajra Vidhya Institute, Sarnath.


    On the afternoon of March 1st the Gyalwang Karmapa presided over an extensive puja dedicated to the long life of his main tutor, Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche.
    "Our Lord of Refuge, Kyabje Thrangu Rinpoche, is now in his old age," the Gyalwang Karmapa said, as he announced the puja to the entire sangha. "But he is still present, and so hopefully he can remain and continue to bring benefit to the teachings and to beings. He is someone who has spent his entire life practicing the dharma, through both the teachings of scripture and through practice. At this point in Rinpoche's life I feel that even if we hear just a tiny amount of Rinpoche's speech it will be very beneficial, and I truly believe this. By doing this puja we can please the lama and ask him to remain, so the aim of doing this is for Kyabje Thrangu Rinpoche's long life."
    The puja, called 'A Ritual of Offerings to the Gurus' (Lama Chöpa), began with prayers recited in Sanskrit. The Gyalwang Karmapa then led the assembly in reciting the liturgies for a full three and a half hours, with Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche seated to his left. Hundreds of monks, nuns and lay devotees, including many international devotees, joined their voices with the Gyalwang Karmapa's in making united aspirations for Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche's long life.
    "The other day," the Gyalwang Karmapa said, "on the 15th of the Tibetan month, Rinpoche went to great effort to do the long-life puja and long-life offering for me. He prayed so that I might have a long life. In addition, all the members of the sangha made great aspirations and prayers that I would live long, as did all of my dharma friends who are here. And so I would like to thank you all from the bottom of my heart."



    http://www.kagyuoffice.org/#VVI2013-12

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    1-7 March 2013 –Vajra Vidhya Institute, Sarnath.

    One of the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa's core interests has long been to revive the "Thongwa Gyue-pe Chaglen" (unbroken ritual practice) and to modernize the education available to all Karma Kagyu monks and nuns. With this goal in mind, the Gyalwang Karmapa has this week been chairing a weeklong 'Workshop on Monastic Education' at the Vajra Vidya Institute. Key persons who are attending the discussions, including His Eminence Kyabje Goshir Gyaltsab Rinpoche, who has travelled to Sarnath especially for the Workshop, as well as Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche. Chant-masters(Umze), Discipline-masters(Choetrimpa) and Ritual-masters(Chopon) mainly from Rumtek Monastery.
    The discussions are aimed at improving all stages of the monastic education system, from the earliest level right through to Shedra (university) level. One of the key ideas being explored is to add several modern subjects into the curriculum, such as Science and English language, in order to give monastics a more rounded education. The Workshop participants are also considering ways of combining the traditional strands of Shedra (university-level study), with Drupdra (ritual practice), so that individual monks may more easily benefit from both these specializations.

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    5 March 2013 –Vajra Vidhya Institute, Sarnath.


    In a powerful ceremony, on the afternoon of 5 March 2013 the Gyalwang Karmapa presided over a sacred puja on behalf of those who have recently passed away. The puja, called the 'Korwa Dhung Drup', was dedicated to all sentient beings particularly to Pema Lakshi, the sister of Khenpo Karthar Rinpoche.
    The Gyalwang Karmapa, His Eminence Kyabje Goshir Gyaltsab Rinpoche, and Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche, as well as the entire sangha. With these three masters in attendance the puja was extraordinarily powerful, and was an especially strong cause for liberating the consciousness of those who have passed away.
    During the early stages of the puja, sacred visualizations and invocations were made to Chenrezig, the Buddha of Compassion. The Gyalwang Karmapa then burned the names of the deceased in a powerfully symbolic ritual, directed the consciousness of those beings towards the pure realms of Dewachen, thus helping to liberate them from lower rebirths.

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    7th March 2013 –Vajra Vidhya Institute, Sarnath.


    On the 25th day of the 1st month of the Tibetan calendar, the Day of Dakinis, the Gyalwang Karmapa presided over special puja centered on the deity Vajrayogini. The Day of Dakinis celebrates female wisdom-deities, while Vajrayogini is considered to be the supreme manifestation of female enlightened energy. With His Eminence Goshir Gyaltsab Rinpoche and Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche also in attendance, the puja assumed an extra dimension of tantric potency and sacredness.
    The Gyalwang Karmapa began his preparatory rituals and the consecration of the mandala in the closed gompa several hours before the actual puja began. The puja was restricted to only those who had previously received the Vajrayogini empowerment. At 7pm the registered participants were invited inside to participate in the evening ritual, which stretched late into the night. Throughout the puja the Gyalwang Karmapa was adorned in a sacred costume and crown, each piece laden with tantric symbolism.

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    A religious figure comes into his own as artist and green activist

    Written by Tsering Namgyal   
    MONDAY, 11 MARCH 2013


    Ogyen Trinley Dorje, the 17th Karmapa Lama, arrived in India in January 2000, literally moving from his 12th century headquarters in Tibet onto the front page of international papers. Now, imagine a setting where, as a 28-year old teacher, he holds a few thousand people from all over the world under a spell for a few weeks.

    This is precisely what the Karmapa, the head of the Black Hat sect of Tibetan Buddhism and Tibet's second-most-powerful religious figure, after the Dalai Lama himself, has been doing every winter in Bodhgaya, India.

    The size of the gathering at the place of Buddha's enlightenment belies the fact that the Karmapa has been accused by Indian media of being a Chinese spy and of financial irregularities, though all charges have since been dropped as unfounded.

    Meanwhile, the Indian government continues to keep him under a close scrutiny and bars him from traveling abroad (he has only been overseas twice), refusing to give permission to visit his monastery in Rumtek, in the Indian state of Sikkim.

    The problems, however, have failed to dent his determination. His work over the past decade in everything ranging from arts to environmentalism is beginning to bear fruit.

    Although what begets attention is his political and religious role, he is very much an artist at heart. He authors poems, writes and directs plays based on ancient Tibetan stories, composes music, and has even performed the lama dance, quite a rare thing for a high-ranking Tibetan monk. Every year at the New Year gathering, he has regularly distributed cards with paintings and calligraphy to his diverse group of followers.

    "Whatever he does, he has a great artistic sensibility," says Jamyang Dorjee Chakrsihar, a former civil servant who worked with the Karmapa when he first arrived in India. "He brings that sensitivity to whatever he does."

    His interest in the arts is not unprecedented. Many of his predecessors had been gifted artists and polymaths, some of them considered among Tibet's most accomplished artists such as the 10th Karmapa, whose art is prized and exhibited in museums around the world.

    In 2010, for instance, the Karmapa wrote and directed a play based on life story of Milarepa, the 11th century Tibetan mendicant, performed by the artists from the Dharamsala-based Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts (TIPA).

    "I think what the Karmapa is doing is impressive," says Sonam Phuntsok, artistic director of the TIPA. By merging performing art with spirituality, the Karmapa is not doing anything new, Phuntsok says, because he is merely trying to restore something that was already a part of Tibet's spiritual culture but had been lost out of neglect. Yet of his many activities, his biggest achievement so far, it seems, has been in the field of the environment. His mission: raising awareness for environmental challenges - melting glaciers, deforestation and depletion of resources - of particular importance to the Himalayas and Tibet.

    He has been using the year-end gathering -- which now attracts more than 6,000 people, up from a few hundred a decade ago -- to spearhead ethical change in the community, put his vision into action in all realms, including the environment.

    "The emphasis on biological diversity, including ecosystems?in particular, the understanding that animate and inanimate beings are parts of a whole?resonates closely with Buddhism's emphasis on interdependence," he wrote in an article published in the Journal of Conservation Biology in 2011.

    In Bodhgaya, he would often take time away from his formal duties to specifically speak on his passion. Like a management consultant in maroon robes, he could be seen doing a PowerPoint presentation, attempting to explain the nuances of environmental science in Tibetan to young monks.

    He works with the Washington-DC based World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the world's largest conservation organization, to educate the members of his community on environment and has also addressed the Mind and Life Institute, a prestigious forum of exchange between Buddhists and scientists, about his vision for the environment.

    Stephanie Kaza, a professor at the University of Vermont and a specialist on Buddhism and ecology, says that the world needs to know more about the Karmapa's environmental work.

    When he arrived in India, the odds were stacked against him. He has not only managed to overcome the challenges but has succeeded in living up to the expectations of his followers.

    "I could not but marvel at his poise," says Swati Chopra, New Delhi-based writer, who has met the Karmapa. "He seemed to have weathered crisis after crisis, and yet had the stillness of mind" to be work for the benefit of others.

    Education has been his top personal priority. He has been pursuing his studies, receiving a wealth of teachings from the senior lamas, including the Dalai Lama (receiving religious transmissions from gurus is central to the lineage-based tradition of Tibetan Buddhism.)

    "Without receiving teachings from his gurus, there was the risk of him becoming a Karmapa in name only," says Chakrsihar, who holds the Guinness Book of Record for the longest piece of calligraphy.

    If anything, the apple-cheeked teenage monk who arrived in India almost a decade ago has now transformed into a powerful teacher and a highly effective leader. His two trips to the US, in 2008 and 2010 were considered highly successful. Last month, he released perhaps his most important book to date, The Heart is Noble: Changing the World from the Inside Out, published by Boston-based Shambala Publications.

    Best-selling author and neuroscientist Daniel Goleman says the book "shares (the Karmapa's) deep wisdom and compassion as a lens on topics ranging from global hunger to healthy relationships and to the meaning of life" and "that bringing a noble heart to whatever we encounter enriches everyone."

    Like a good leader, the Karmapa is adept at juggling his many roles. He is as much at ease in his role as an environmentalist as he is as a religious guru and a teacher, often exhibiting a level of maturity normally expected only from people twice his age.

    On other occasions, he would also comment on many topics - society, science, ethics and politics. For instance, in the wake of self-immolations inside Tibet, he has criticized the Chinese government's policies inside Tibet.

    Notwithstanding his other duties, he is still the religious leader, perhaps the most difficult job to have in the modern world. In the wee hours of the morning in Bodhgaya, the Karmapa, in his role as a guru, would amble towards his throne accompanied by somber-looking assistants.

    Rich music would blow forth to mark his arrival while incense would perfume the air. The steps on the stage of the pavilion would be decorated by religious rigmarole - statues of Buddha, scroll paintings, flowers and ritual cakes made of butter - evocative of a medieval ceremony.

    The Karmapa would deliver his lectures, commentaries on elegant texts, and give empowerments - aimed to open the gates to certain Buddhist spiritual practices. Translators in 12 languages would jump into action, speaking animatedly into their microphones (they would be webcast live around the world). The Indonesian translator would be having a field day conveying Gampopa's 12th century masterpiece, Jewel Ornament of Liberation, into Bahasa Indonesia.

    Long hours would often wear on the young teacher, and sometimes, a bad flu would take a toll on his otherwise rich baritone voice, making him sound as vulnerable as he is powerful.

    The Karmapa had fame thrust upon him since the age of six when he was plucked away from a village in Eastern Tibet as the reincarnation of the 16th Karmapa. He has indeed come a very long way.
    Tsering Namgyal, a journalist based in New York City, is the author of a forthcoming biography of the 17th Karmapa Ogen Trinley Dorje. He is at work on a novel.


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    12th March 2013 - New Delhi


    New Delhi, 12th March 2013 - Today, the Gyalwang Karmapa visited Kyabje Ling Rinpoche, who is recuperating well after a recent road accident. His Holiness spent more than a hour visiting Ling Rinpoche at his farmhouse in suburb Delhi, giving advice and showing affection.


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    March 9, 2013

    Today the Gyalwang Karmapa responded to a request for a talk from the Central University of Tibetan Studies. Sitting majestically on an elaborately carved throne, the Karmapa accepted katas from the faculty and administration of the University. He spoke eloquently about the detrimental effect of sectarian rivalry that can be found in Tibetan history and encouraged everyone to develop a genuine appreciation for all the traditions, which come from the same source.




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    2013

    I have been a supporter of Earth Hour for the past three years and am happy to continue the tradition this year as well, by turning off the lights for one hour on March 23rd, from 8.30 to 9.30 pm. It might seem like a small gesture but Earth Hour represents the unified voice of hundreds of millions of people around the world who want to see practical climate change solutions and to see them now. It is an hour when all of us who are concerned about the terrible impacts of climate change are interconnected and determined in our resolve to prevent further climate tragedies. The moment for climate wisdom has arrived. I join Earth Hour in urging the international community to come to a climate agreement that protects the poor, stabilizes climate, prevents further droughts and floods, and develops clean energy.

    ~ His Holiness the 17th Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje

    http://www.khoryug.com/blog/hh-karmapa-supports-earth-hour/

    2012

    I ask all of you to join us on March 31st [2012], 8.30 pm, to turn off your lights for one hour. This simple gesture has a profound consequence. It joins us with millions of people around the world and raises our concern about the impacts of climate change on our world in one common voice. It affirms our collective sense of responsibility to give back to the earth and to each other. It reminds us that the individual choices people make can together overcome the environmental challenges we face today. A truly meaningful religious practice includes acting to protect the earth and all living beings that thrive on it. Please join us to help create a climate-safe tomorrow.

    ~ His Holiness the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa

    source: http://www.khoryug.com/blog/his-holiness-speaks-for-earth-hour/


    2010

    We should see the Earth as a living entity; it is her existence and wellbeing that provides for us, the houses we live in, the clothes we wear, the food we eat, even the oxygen we breathe. I am very glad to participate in Earth Hour and have asked my monasteries to turn out their lights as part of this global movement. I pray that we carry our commitment to Earth Hour into our everyday lives. This earth is like a grain of sand in the vastness of the cosmos, but it is our only home and we have nowhere else to go. Receding glaciers and rising seas are no longer in the future. They are in the now. We don't have time to apportion blame. We must work together to preserve and protect it.

    ~ His Holiness the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa

    source: http://www.khoryug.com/blog/his-holiness-turns-lights-off-for-earth-hour/



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    23rd March 2013 - Gyuto, Dharamsala


    "I have been a supporter of Earth Hour for the past three years and am happy to continue the tradition this year as well, by turning off the lights for one hour on March 23rd, from 8.30 to 9.30 pm. It might seem like a small gesture but Earth Hour represents the unified voice of hundreds of millions of people around the world who want to see practical climate change solutions and to see them now. It is an hour when all of us who are concerned about the terrible impacts of climate change are interconnected and determined in our resolve to prevent further climate tragedies. The moment for climate wisdom has arrived. I join Earth Hour in urging the international community to come to a climate agreement that protects the poor, stabilizes climate, prevents further droughts and floods, and develops clean energy." – His Holiness the 17th Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje


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    22nd March 2013 –Tashi Jong, Dharamsala.

    On the 10th day of the second month, the Gyalwang Karmapa was Guest of Honor at Khampagar Monastery's 300th anniversary of the sacred Padmasambhava Garcham (Guru Rinpoche Lama-Dance).
    Arriving early in the morning at Tashi Jong, the Gyalwang Karmapa's motorcade passed through crowds of well-wishers lining both sides of the road before he was greeted by His Eminence the Khamtrul Rinpoche, Abbott of Khampagar Monastery, Dorzong Rinpoche and Dugu Choegyal Rinpoche. The Gyalwang Karmapa was then led into the main shrineroom and seated on an ornate throne where he received mandala offerings from His Eminence Khamtrul Rinpoche.
    Moving outside into the main courtyard for the Cham, the Gyalwang Karmapa sat under a gold and red canopy to watch the sacred dances, with sangha and over a thousand lay devotees filling the courtyard on all sides. As the Gyalwang Karmapa watched, His Eminence Khamtrul Rinpoche entered the mandala of the dance ground and personally led the dancers through a series of sacred Cham.
    The Gyalwang Karmapa then gave a short talk for those gathered, emphasizing the powerful blessings embodied in the sacred dances. "The Cham is not for entertainment," the Gyalwang Karmapa said, "but rather a form of sacred tantric practice. We have to visualize the person who wears the mask, who wears the appearance of the deity, has transformed himself into the deity," he explained. "So even if we don't have the merit to see Guru Rinpoche directly, if we watch the Cham with pure devotion we can see the deity through the dancers, and receive the deity's blessings through them."
    As the Tibetans inside Tibet are showing strong 'courage' and 'determination', the Karmapa called upon the exile Tibetans to offer their prayers and work towards the unification of Tibetans. 'This is our unavoidable responsibility,' he said.
    The Gyalwang Karmapa continued to watch as the dances resumed after lunch, at times rising from his seat with respect as eight manifestations of Guru Rinpoche were displayed. "Guru Rinpoche is the one who spread the dharma in Tibet like the sun," he said, "and so we should always remember his great kindness."
    This particular Garcham, composed by the 3rd Khamtrul Rinpoche, celebrates the birth of Guru Rinpoche and was performed for 300th consecutive year. Many other eminent Drukpa Kagyu masters also attended the festivities, including His Eminence the Dorzong Rinpoche, His Eminence the Dugu Choegyal Rinpoche, and Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo. In addition, special invited guests included Jagat Singh Negi, Deputy Speaker of the State Legislative Assembly, and Ravi Thakur and Kishori Lal, both Members of the State Legislative Assembly.

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    9th April, 2013 –Gyuto Monastery, Dharamsala.


    Meeting recently with a private group of 300 advanced Mahamudra students, the Gyalwang Karmapa explored what it means to be an authentic Buddhist. The group of international students had travelled to Gyuto Monastery to seek the Gyalwang Karmapa's heart advice in an annual tradition, after recently receiving the Level 6 Mahamudra transmissions from Kyabje Tai Situ Rinpoche.
    The Gyalwang Karmapa began his teaching by observing that it's difficult if we merely call ourselves dharma practitioners or Buddhist followers in name, without really understanding the essence of being a true Buddhist. "Sometimes the most important thing is to be a good person, a good human being. This is very important," he began. Turning to himself as an example, the Gyalwang Karmapa continued, "For example, in terms of me myself, sometimes I think I'm a real Buddhist follower or a real Buddhist student, because I was born in a Buddhist family and raised in a Buddhist environment, in a monastery. I think I'm the real sort of Buddhist practitioner or follower. But if you really think carefully about it and discover, 'Oh, maybe I'm a Buddhist practitioner or follower, but I'm not sure if I'm a good human being or not,' then that is a little bit funny."
    Urging the students to cut to the core of being an authentic Buddhist, he continued, "So maybe the point is to confront ourselves with the question: am I really a good person, a good human being? Because that is what characterizes being an authentic Buddhist."
    The Gyalwang Karmapa then returned to a key theme of his heart advice, that the essence of religion should be internal. He drew a clear distinction between merely following the external customs or traditions of religions, rather than the inner transformation of the mind. "We are involved in religious traditions with whatever degree of religiosity, and that means following certain traditions, or maybe more often they're just customs. But does it mean that we should be steeped in the external customs and traditions? Should religion come from outside us? Or should it be something we invoke within ourselves and cultivate within ourselves?"
    Urging the students gathered to put the instructions they've received into practice, the Gyalwang Karmapa offered his support. "I want to encourage all of you to continuously engage in the practice," he said, "so that as long as you live you have this sense of determination and conviction to continue the practice."




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    His Holiness Karmapa's Public Talk

    Gyuto Ramoche Monastery, Sidhbari, Dharamsala. India.

    Recorded by Ani Jampa





     (1)  20050521


    Firstly due to His great compassion he gave the oral transmission of the Chenrezig mantra and sadhana.


    It is very important to understand the reason and objective for receiving and giving the transmission of the practice of Chenrezig.  It is evident that all human beings are gifted with aptitude in comparison to other beings  and that this human life form is very precious.  We all have the potential to work for the happiness for ourself and also for others but for the later, we must have all the favourable conditions as well.  In general, we are always very busy running after everything.  However, it is not possible for an individual to set objectives for another person’s life.  Each individual has their own responsibility and duty.   The meaning of our life is to look for happiness.  This is relevant to all of life.  How we come to this conclusion, that the meaning of life is to find happiness, is evident from our attitude, the way we think and the way we aspire.  Irrespective of the different natures of individuals, every human being has one common attitude and aspiration, and that is to find happiness and overcome suffering.  The wish to find happiness and to overcome suffering is common to all beings but human beings have a special potential to overcome suffering and to meet with happiness.  They also have a long-standing determination for meeting with happiness compared to other beings.  If we understand that the essence of our life is to find happiness, then we are in a better position to know if our life is meaningful or not.  Life may become meaningful through the guidance of your teachers, parents or through your own individual thinking.


    Primarily, it is important to understand that the inner aspiration of our life is to find happiness.  If your attitudes are opposed to finding happiness then life will be meaningless.  On the other hand, to make life meaningful, it is important to engage in activities that will produce happiness.  In order to find happiness, we must look for positive causes like non-violence or causes that are peaceful and appealing to one’s mind.  If instead we engage in impure causes then this will empty our aspiration to find happiness and make life meaningful.  In our life, the positive qualities we are talking about are loving kindness, compassion and non-violence.  In order to cultivate love and compassion within ourselves, it is important to understand that the opposite to love and compassion are the emotional defilements.  These prevent us from developing love and compassion.  The opposites to the emotions of love and compassion are desire, hatred and ignorance.  Here, related to hatred, I have a few things to share with you.  I feel that it might be of some help if I try to highlight the talk through a story.  This might bring the point across more clearly.


    Once there was a great Indian poet named Valmiki who composed the world famous Ramayana in Sanskrit.  This classic is considered to be the bible of Hindus.  It contains the total idea ology of Hindu culture, society etc.  However, it is to be understood that this world famous poet did not have much of a personality.  In his early life, he was a bandit who robbed from pilgrims and travellers.  Sometimes he even murdered these people. 


    One time, for a whole week, he could not find any victims but then along came a yogi. Valmiki was very hopeful of getting some money or food but this yogi had nothing on him.  He became totally enraged and said to the yogi, ’I’m not letting you go off.  In this forest there is a blood thirsty demon, if I offer him your blood to him then he will grant me the blessing to become rich.’  The yogi saw that he was about to die but was not disturbed and having no fear he answered, ‘Okay, if my death makes you happy then my life is meaningful but the acts that you are engaging in are incorrect and sinful.  Do you realize that you have sinned all your life?’


    Valmiki answered, ‘Yes, I know the fruits of these deeds are suffering to come.’


        Then the yogi asked, ‘When you know these deeds are sinful and the fruit is suffering, why do you still engage in these acts?’


    He replied, ‘I am engaged in these acts in order to feed my family.’


    They had a long discussion and then the yogi said, ‘If you are so attached to your family then why not engage in some other acts rather than robbing and killing?’


    Valmiki then said, ‘I am not hard working and can’t do anything else.  I only know how to rob and kill.   I know this job is very dangerous but sometimes I get rich as a result.’


    Then the yogi asked another question, ‘Does your family know what kind of livelihood you are engaged in?’


    He said, ‘Yes and they are happy about my work.’


    ‘In that case then,’ said the yogi, ‘all the members of your family share in these sinful deeds.’


    He retorted, ‘What do you mean?’


       The yogi then elaborated, ‘You know that your deeds are not correct and sinful and since your family members also know but do they know that they share in your sinful deeds?  Have you asked your family about this?’


    Valmiki answered by saying ‘no’ and so the yogi asked him to go home and ask his family if they want to share in these sinful deeds.  He thought that the yogi was just trying to be smart and get away.  So the yogi told him he was wrong and that if he was in doubt then he should tie him up on a tree, go home and ask the question to his family then come back with the answer.


        Valmiki did this.  He went home and asked his mother first.  She answered by saying, ‘I gave birth to you and brought you up.  This was my responsibility.  Now your responsibility is to look after your family.  If you engage in sinful deeds then that is your responsibility but I want no share in this.’


    Then he asked his father and his brother but he got the same reply. When he went to his wife he said, ‘You are my wife, do you want to be a part of the deeds I engage in and the consequences of these sins that I have committed?’


        His wife answered by saying, ‘I have stayed with you through ups and downs, happiness and suffering, but in committing sinful deeds, I want no part in it.  That is your responsibility.’ 


    He then looked to his children but they were too small to answer, so he went back to the yogi.  This was the turning point of his life and he became a student of the great yogi.


    The point here is that hatred is generally believed to be something that is ignited from external objects or beings.  However, it must be understood and realised that we also play a part in causing a hateful situation.  If we are in a position to internalise this fact then we won’t place all the blame on others and we can develop a forgiving attitude.  This is a substantial step towards cutting through hatred.  If you look in a mirror with a green face, for example, then you will see that same green face reflected back at you but if you have a pleasant face then there will be a similar pleasing reflection.


    The point here is to realize your own fault and develop forgiveness for the faults of others.  This will bring a positive attitude and emotions in your life and it will also have a positive impact on others, even if the other person is at fault.  If you develop space to forgive then this quality will help you overcome suffering and develop a loving attitude to all. 



    (2)  20050528


    At first  His holiness gave the oral transmission of the practice of  Chenrezig.

       

        Holding an attitude of non-violence and wishing to benefit others whilst bearing affection in one’s heart for all beings who have been our mothers and are our extended family, are practices that we need to make very powerful because they will help us to overcome many of the obstacles in our lives.

       

        Currently, our world has many environmental and other obstacles.  These are causing the negative afflictions to arise frequently within our beings.  These negative afflictions inhibit our intention to help others.  Greed and jealousy are especially most destructive.  Jealousy, for example, plants the seeds of discord from person to person so that you can’t enjoy the happiness of others.  You always wish for others that they be lower than you and dependent on you and not your equal.  This is the fruit from the seeds of jealousy.

       

        These days, it is very common for people to challenge and compete with one another and to hold these attitudes in their minds.

       

        As regarding freedom, there are two types, one is inborn and the other depends on life’s situations.  Inborn freedom may be practiced extensively but when it comes to environmental restrictions then inborn freedom needs to be curbed to meet them so that you remain balanced within your self and society.  For example, in the case of a monk, his birth-right is freedom but a monk must remain within the boundaries of his vows, otherwise he becomes an object of criticism.

       

        In this world and as humans, we are all searching for happiness. We are all making our best efforts to use our freedom to pursue happiness.  It’s the same for everyone else too. If we try to impede the efforts of others then it is not good.  It’s the same for us too, we should not do that to others either.  It is improper.  Therefore it is imperative to develop right values.  It’s the same for everyone.  We need to develop ourselves and value the feelings of others

           

        Another way of viewing finding happiness for ourself is to ask if we are actually dependent on others with whom we are living?  We do actually depend on others to achieve happiness?  Our own efforts are limited and we depend on the mutual co-operation of others.

       

        The main point here is that because of jealousy and competition, we need to stop using our eyes and mind for finding fault in others and wanting to be better than them.  If you see others as being better than yourself then you’ll just get jealous.  So take a good look at yourself!

       

        Here’s a little story:

       

        In the past in Vesali, there was a very rich man who often made offerings to Lord Buddha and his Sangha.  In those days many of the monks used to fall ill and so the other monks had to go on greater alms round than usual.

       

        This rich man had an old maid servant who looked after most of the needs of his household.  She started to foster the thought that the monks were obtaining food through some kind of magic that encouraged people to give more and more and that the monks didn’t know when to say enough.  She thought along these lines.

       

        She didn’t realize that this was due to her own greed and miserliness that she was finding faults in the monks.  She complained bitterly about them and prayed to be reborn somewhere where there were no monks!

       

        Due to her this evil thought started spreading through the whole town of Vesali and even reached the ears of the queen.

       

        The queen was acquainted with the rich man’s wife and went to visit her. She asked, ‘I understand there’s an old maid in your service who is making a lot of trouble for the Sangha. What are you going to do about it?’

       

        The wife answered by saying, ‘Lord Buddha has been to many places and is always doing a lot of good deeds infusing loving kindness and peace in every one’s hearts – even to Angulimala!  So I wouldn’t pay too much attention to this old lady.’


        The queen said, ‘Tomorrow the Sangha are coming to the palace.  Please invite the old maid to come too.’

       

        As the old maid entered the royal palace, she thought she saw the Buddha coming towards her. Feeling uneasy, she tried to avoid him but all the doors were closed and she couldn’t run away.  She ended up in the teaching hall listening to the Buddha give a sermon to all the Sangha.

       

        He was teaching that Bodhisattva’s have forsaken their body, speech and mind because they seek liberation so that others may walk the path and find true happiness.  They forsake everything for the benefit of others.

       

        The reason for me and my Sangha to go begging in all directions is to make a positive connection with everyone we meet.  My objective is to benefit everyone.

       

        Then she began to realize that it is not just a matter of feeding them.  The monks bring many benefits to others and she was able to overcome her greed and miserliness.

       

        We must all develop a spacious heart – as spacious as the sky – filled with the attitude of benefiting others. Then, even if we have obstacles, they’ll be overcome.  If we have the limited view of only benefiting ourselves then it will bring us trouble in the future.


       

    (3)  20050604


        Firstly His Holiness gave the Chenrezig oral tranmission.  The Chenrezig practice is related to love and compassion for the welfare of others.

       

        The practice of love and compassion is primarily related to the mental attitude that comes from one’s heart.  To do things that have no benefit for others is not the practice of love and compassion.

       

        For beginners, ordinary people like us, it is difficult to understand the true practice of love and compassion.  Also, it is compulsory that we depend on others in order to practice love and compassion.

       

        Therefore, if we recite words that are charged with love and compassion then we gain the power of love and compassion derived from these words.

       

        From one’s own experience, we know that words have a power and an impact on us.  For example, critical and offensive words have an impact on us.  They create mental disturbance and negative emotions.  Thus, words have power.  If we recite positive words of power while thinking of their meaning this can empower us in a very special way and give us a good experience.

       

        In this world there are many religions.  Some have a physical image of their god but in the totality of all religious teachings they all have some kind of shape or form.

       

        There are three methods for studying Buddhism – listening, contemplating and meditating on the teachings.  We could devote all our time to learn all that there is to learn about Buddhism but it might be more practical to pick what’s important and let this clarify one’s life.  This is very important.

       

        In general, every individual is unique with unique needs, which are different for everyone.  These days the world needs to create a society that is positive, peaceful, non-violent and that benefits others.  We need to rely on many methods to achieve this.

       

        From the Buddhist point of view, we need to develop a mind which wishes to benefit others  and there are many methods to do this.  Among these instructions and methods is the blessing of the great compassion practice of Chenrezig – like the one you received today.

       

    What I’ve said is not new, as those who regularly come know, but for those who have come for the first, it is good to develop the special thoughts of love and compassion.

       

        In order to develop Bodhichitta for the benefit of others then we must progress through seven steps. The first of these is to recognize the quality of our mother’s great kindness.  In my own life, I  understand having this proper attitude towards my own mother.  When the relationship between the mother and child is troublesome then these people may not understand what I mean.

       

        What is the correct concept of knowing all as being one’s mother?  It is when all sentient beings have the feeling of compassion which is like that of a mothers.  Every sentient being has been our mother at some time or another.  They also must have been our fathers too and so everyone has affected you and everyone else too.  To know and accept this belief one needs to believe in having had lives which have preceded this present life.  We have gained entry into this and each and every other life, via the vehicle of having had a mother and a father.  Yet even identical twins who look exactly alike have different intellectual make-ups.

       

        There are instances of people who recognize their past lives like a photocopy or remember being in their mother’s womb. So we shouldn’t doubt about the existence of former lives.

       

        In general, it is difficult to remember our former lives or to recall each one because they are beginningless.  Think about each individual being taking their turns in being the mother to one another!

       

        If you look at your present day situation then it’s obvious that not every sentient beings is our present day mother and father.  We only have two, but there are various ways to classify parents.  For example, there are our parents who gave us our bodies, then there are the parents who provide for us and then there are the parents who guide us – such as our teachers.

       

        Therefore, due to interdependence, all beings in this world have been and are our parents.  We depend on everyone in totality and need the cooperation of all.  This view is very big and inter- connected.

       

        Since we derive a lot of benefit from so many known and unknown individuals in this world, we should be aware of their benefit and kindness.  This includes our own parents but this is not enough.  We must also be grateful for their efforts in bringing us up.  This doesn’t mean just recognizing the fact that we are here because of them.  These days children don’t recognize this enough.

       

        There are different ways of highlighting the gratitude we should have towards our parents.  For example, we should take care of our precious body which is the priceless gift for our parents.  It is pledged to us out of their love.  They want you to be happy.  Our parents, thus, are our first and best friends.  Sometimes parents have too many children and find it difficult to meet this responsibility.  These days many parents use the short cut of family planning. Having been brought into this world, if they just left us on our own then we might not survive.  Our parents have died for us over and over again.  So we should love our parents.

       

        Just changing the subject slightly, if we are really talking about benefiting others then how is it that we often receive harmful and disturbing causes from others?  Should we hate those who harm us?  If we all depend on others for our benefit, just as they depend on us- if we receive harm from them, should we wish to harm them in return?  Which attitude benefits most anger or loving-kindness?  If we love others, then the consequence is that we will be happy.  So it is better to develop love and compassion for others.

       

        We are talking about the collective kindness of all our parents and consciously creating this thought.  Sometimes however, parents are not very kind to their children nor children very kind to their parents.  This causes all kinds of trouble for the parents and/or the children.  Subsequently, the parents find it difficult to love their children .  If this continues from generation to generation then it may come that love is almost extinct in coming generations.  Love needs to be reciprocal.



    (4)  20050615


        In all the various spiritual traditions of the world there exists some belief in some form of divinity to whom we express our adoration.  This divinity may be in a tangible physical form or a more abstract energy form.  It also seems that in most spiritual traditions there is a particular set of texts or scriptures which are honoured and offered prayer.  In Tibetan Buddhism there are a large number of scriptural texts that have come down through various spiritual beings who have left them for us to study and supplicate.

       

        Given that we are all equal in our spiritual inclination, we should bear in mind that our spiritual practices should have impacted on us in a positive and good way.  Often though, it seems that we are just spiritual in our outer appearance and the amount of energy that we actually put into our spiritual practices.  Further, over the years it still seems to be in outer appearance rather than having really made some impact on our minds. We shouldn’t be deceived by these outer expressions that are in fact devoid of true intellectual development.

       

        Sometimes its true that our external practices are real.  Often due to exceptional outer circumstances or external conditions that we are more spiritually inclines than at other times. However, if we are always waiting for favourable circumstances to trigger our spiritual behaviour then how can we ever expect to become truly spiritual?  If its just a couple of hours a day and due to external conditions, how can the spiritual values become deeply embedded?

       

        When we talk about engaging in spiritual practices, it should mean that is serves spiritual and beneficial practices in all areas of our lives.  Our whole being becomes spiritual everyday and our mind’s outlook becomes naturally wholesome continuously on a daily basis.

       

        It is important to bear in mind that simply waiting for spiritual circumstances to arise and then, under it’s spell, doing certain spiritual activities, is likened to indulging in substances such as alcohol etc. When things get rough one drinks, then, under the sway of alcohol the cares and troubles cease but when the effect wares off then once again the daily reality reveals itself.  This is like waiting for special circumstances to arise.  It would be better to maintain your spiritual practices continuously so that there will be constant progress in the mind of awakening and in taming the mind.  Spiritual practice shouldn’t just be once in a while.  Your spiritual practice should be accountable and reliable so that the mind becomes stable in the qualities of love, compassion and tranquility.

       

        In order for one’s life to become completely spiritual you need to make a constant habit of spiritual practice, maintaining it daily and especially in the face of the numerous obstacles and hinderances that arise.

       

        The main hinderance on our path is the reliance we place in the illusion of the importance of the activities of this life.  We are so locked into this way of thinking that we find it almost impossible to see any other alternatives.  Any other view cannot even make a strike!

       

        In the past all the great masters in one voice used to say that until we’ve given up the illusion of the reality of the futility of this life totally then we can’t really turn our minds to the reality of the Dharma.  The Dharma until then is completely oblivious to such people.

       

        Initially though, we need to become very realistic and enter the path as best we can.  We start by slowly and systematically compromising the activities of this life with more and more spiritual practicies.

       

        In the same line, given our habitual pattern of clinging to the illusion of this life, if we try to renounce everything all together and at once then it probably won’t work out well for our future.  We need therefore, to strike a compromise and give up a little at a time thereby integrating truly spiritual elements slowly, gradually and consistently into our day-to-day lives.

       

        In paving the way for true spiritual practice to take place in our lives, we need to be very clear right now that no matter what or in the name of any worldly activity, it can never bring any long lasting or substantial happiness.  This is the striking reality and meaning behind embarking on spiritual practice.  This, so called genuine practice, is not just going along with the flock but generates utter joy because one knows whats impelling one into undertaking genuine spiritual practice.  The basis then, is breaking through the fixation on the illusion of this life……so break through!



    (5)  20050618


        As you may know Chenrezig is an embodiment of all the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas.  His Sanscrit name is Avalokiteshvara and his practice is love and compassion.  All religions and all beings irrespective of faith or tradition are free to undertake this practice as it is a practice for everyone.

       

        Among those here today, there are some who are interested in Buddhism whilst others are not.  However, what we all have in common is the wish to make this life meaningful and to be filled with happiness.

       

        The source of all spiritual practices is the wish to make life meaningful and happy.  The practice of love and compassion accomplishes this wish.

       

        In general, it must be understood that all the different religions have come into existence as a means to try to help people to overcome their suffering.  They are a means to produce happiness and to make our lives more meaningful.  Making our lives meaningful and filled with happiness is of fundamental importance to us.   Whatever our actions, whether they are spiritual or mundane, if they don’t achieve happiness then all these activities are just useless.  Since we make every decision based upon this objective of making our lives wholesome and meaningful, any incorrect decisions will have serious adverse consequences for us.

       

        Each individual has a different approach or mental outlook on how to live their life and make it meaningful.  For some individuals happiness relates to their independence and prosperity with not much concern for the welfare of others.  Other people think of not only their own welfare but also the welfare of others.

       

        So is it better to pursue a self-orientated life or to take the path that turns life to become meaningful for others?  There is a striking difference between the two.

       

        Some traditions believe that god is permanent but if we take such a self orientated path where we forget or ignore that we are actually interdependent and prefer to rely on such total solitude then we’ll miss realizing the fact that actually depend on others to find true happiness and make our lives meaningful.

       

        If we ask ourselves if we have any effect on the welfare of others then the answer would have to be ‘yes’.  Think of our family life, for example.  If one member is unhappy then everyone suffers.  We all have a responsibility to up lift him or her.  Therefore, each and every being has the potential to be of great benefit for us.  When someone is faced with difficulties, it is our responsibility to help them.

       

        By making one’s life meaningful, it is possible to make oneself and others happy at the same time. Think about some of the disturbing things that are happening in our world these days.  Can you continue on without being disturbed by them too? You need a great positive attitude to make life meaningful and happiness is the fundamental ingredient in making life rich and meaningful.



    (6)  20050625


        Chenrezig is the embodiment of love and compassion.  We already have within us the seeds of love and compassion both for ourself and for others. This Chenrezig transmission enhances these seeds.

       

        The opposite to these seeds of love and compassion are the worst seeds of hatred.  If we could  them then we’d say that hatred is destructive whilst loving-kindness is beneficial.

       

        Sometimes we receive hatred from others but if we introspect then we will see that there must have been a cause.  Here’s a little story:

       

        In Tibet there was a great yogi called Milarepa who is respected by all schools in Tibetan Buddhism.  His story is similar to the great poet Valmiki, who in his early life was a bandit who stole from pilgrims and travellers.  He was full of anger.   One day he met a yogi (siddha) who had no valuables and tried to kill him.  However, meeting this yogi ended up being the turning point of his life.

       

        Milarepa in his youth had also done a lot of negative deeds.  He was born in a remote area into a very rich family.  His forefathers had migrated there and became very wealthy.  The locals, thus, disliked their success and were very jealous. 

       

        Milarepa had one sister and his father had died due to a serious illness when he was very young.  All the father’s wealth had fallen into his father’s brothers’s hands and as supposed to be released to Milarepa when he became old enough to be the custodian.

       

        There are different versions of the story and one says that when Milarepa’s mother was 27, the uncle wanted her to re-marry to his son but she didn’t want to.  He then started to treat her very badly because of her refusal.   As a result they had very little food or clothing and underwent a lot of mistreatment from the uncle and his family.  They were starved and forced to do hard work.

       

        When Milarepa became old enough to look after his father’s wealth, the uncle didn’t give it.  Unfortunately Milarepa’s mother had a natural tendency to be ill at heart and couldn’t forgive the uncle.  She wanted revenge and sent Milarepa away to learn black magic.  After a lot of hardship and difficulties he became very accomplished and killed 25 people.  The people in the village became very upset and turned against him because of that.

       

        His Holiness said that he could understand both sides and see why they both had malicious spite towards each other but there was one major difference between the uncle and Milarepa.  The uncle continued to bear his spite but Milarepa out his great regret for killing so many people had forsaken his spite against his uncle.  He took the path of Dharma and undertook the practice of receiving and developing loving kindness to all beings so that his tendency to spite was completely over come.

       

        His mother was already dead and his sister who was also afflicted by poverty had no reason to bear malice.  Since Milarepa had overcome his tendency towards malice, the uncle’s atitude also declined.

       

        As time passed by they too understood why Milarepa had done what he had done.  With great remorse he purified his misdeeds and underwent the difficulties of practising the Dharma.

       

        One day, his aunt came to beg for forgiveness.  On the day that she came Milarepa was giving a teaching.  She could be seen coming from a distance and so a discussion ensued as to whether she should be let in or not.

       

        Milarepa’s sister said that because she had caused so much torture, she’d leave if the aunt was allowed to come in. 

       

        Again, there are many versions to this tale but one says that Milarepa responded to his sister’s kindness by saying if she had any reservations that he’d agree with her and not let the aunt come in. Then on second thoughts and from the point of view of the dharma, he chose not to abandon his aunt or any sentient being, whether a close relative or an enemy but to look upon all beings, including his aunt, equally.

       

        So he let her in but he didn’t see her face to face.  He spoke to her indirectly through a screen.  At first, he spoke very harshly reminding her of when he and his sister had no food that she never came and offered any food nor claim to be their aunt.

       

        When Milarepa said these words she felt intense remorse and repented and due to the power of her deep regret she later became one of Milarepa’s most outstanding disciples.



    (7)  20050716


    The recorded teaching that I heard upon entering the gompa:“benefit self as well as others...by benefiting others you benefit yourself too...” 


    His holiness gave two oral transmissions today. One was the Chenrezig practice of OM MANI PADME HUNG and the other was OM AH HUNG BENZA GURU PEMA SIDDHI HUNG, the for mare was requested by some students (and today is the Tibetan tenth-‘tsechu’).


    The reason for doing this practice is that we are always connected with Chenrezig and this practice has been found to be very beneficial.


    Along with this oral transmission it is taught to practice loving kindness and compassion for sentient beings because love and compassion has a great influence for all. It is good not to fix your practice of love and compassion one just one person in particular but for everyone. To practice like this is very important and also very practical.


    Regarding the practice of love and compassion, it doesn’t distinguish between religions, castes or race because no matter who, no one wants suffering. The practice of loving kindness and compassion is very practical and easy to accomplish.


    His holiness the Karmapa is a Buddhist and practices Buddhism. He lives in this world and feels that he has a great connection with everyone where ever he lives. Everyone has a different way of thinking and regardless of this he still feels that it is his responsibility to help everyone. He tries to help everyone regardless of other people’s different ideas. He tries to help not only each individual but also society at large.


    His Holiness always feels that since we are human beings we have a great potential to be able to help even insignificant beings. If we turn to a broader mind then we can help even insects!


    His Holiness feels that human beings are able to have the wholesome feelings of loving kindness and compassion for others whilst animals are not able to have this type of feeling in the same way. Through the practice of the quality of loving kindness and non-violence we can help others. From the time of our birth everyone has been wanting happiness and doing what ever we can to free themselves from suffering but only humans have this quality of being able to free themselves from suffering. For example, we can laugh when we are happy. Animals can’t laugh. Therefore due to our better qualities we can help others.


    For that reason and through the qualities of loving kindness, compassion and non-violence towards others, we can really help. It is our duty to help others through the practice of loving kindness and compassion. If we practice these good qualities of love, compassion and non-violence then this life becomes more and more useful to one self and others and therefore becomes very meaningful.


    It is not enough just to say we have these qualities, we must express these qualities in all our actions too, other wise it is useless and meaningless. Sometimes though, the practice of love and compassion is not easy to accomplish.


    Since we sometimes have a problem or difficulty expressing true love and compassion, we should ask ourselves what is true love and compassion? True love and compassion is wanting, expecting all other beings to be happy and to want to remove their suffering. This practice however, is very difficult. It’s easy to feel love for our parents and close relatives but really what we need to do is extend these feelings and build upon them so they extend to help all beings.


    The hindrances to obtaining these good qualities are the defilements such as hatred and so on. We need to watch out for the presence of these defilements and not let them interrupt our practice. Speaking about these different afflictions, such as impatience, hatred, desire and so on, if we take the example of hatred then we see that some people are so angry all the time and full of hatred. This type of thinking will only bring back a negative result in the future. People will always keep violent people at a distance – even their family members. Take the example of a baby snake which is born due to past karma of having much hatred in former lives – even a baby snake is something that people don’t even want to see or touch. People are naturally afraid of them. This is the negative result of hatred. You should try to get rid of these negativities that will bring bad results in the future and try to build more positive qualities so the future will be better. Always try to avoid the bad qualities such as hatred, anger, desire and so forth.


    It is important to know that the defiled unwholesome states of mind can only bring negative effects in the future. By knowing this it will help us to abstain from and avoid doing negative things. Through this reasoning, if you do only positive things then it will bring a better result in the long run.If you see someone who is very angry all the time then try seeing them as a sick person who is doing these negative things like an illness and develop compassion for them because you know heir future will be full of suffering. 



    (8)  20050722


    Through these brief words we have been given the oral transmission for practice of Avalokiteshvara, who is the embodiment of the compassion within all sentient beings. This particular practice came from Aryadeva. These days Avalokitsehvara is practiced in many countries but initially it took root in Tibet. Through this practice many people have received great siddhis. It is a very precious practice and a good way to make a dharma connection because it improves he compassion quality with our hearts. This quality of compassion has existed since time immemorial between all people. It makes our mind more inclined towards non-violent actions and helps all aspects of our being.


    We would like all the auspicious things to happen to us. In order to achieve this we need to think of benefiting others. In Buddhism we talk about the concept of life after life – yet few people can tell all their past lives – even me! I am a Buddhist but it is still difficult for me to know every past life and every future life. If you look into history there have been many great siddhas who didn’t trust the idea of reincarnation , but after they studies and practiced they came to believe in past and future lives.


    For most of us though, it might be better to concentrate on this life. Make it pure and virtuous Now then it will improve the quality of this life and also your future lives. It is our duty to make life wholesome and useful for ourselves and others.


    It is very important for us take proper and timely care of our present situation. If we are able to take care of now then we automatically take care of our future.


    Here’s a little story:- Once there was a father and a son who owned a couple of donkeys. During a trip through the mountains the father said that he thought it would be good if they had a mule to ride. The boy thought he’d like to ride the small donkey now but the father hit him saying that the donkey was too small to ride.


    Sometimes we miss what’s happening now because we are too busy thinking about the future. We must plan for the extra-ordinary happiness of an extra-ordinary human being, so make the most of our present situation.


    We must make our life meaningful through finding the secret path, by utilizing skillful means and wisdom. We need a healthy body and mind. We need to balance the four elements because if any of are imbalanced it will cause us trouble. If the water, wind, earth or fire elements are out of balance then it will cause us trouble and create difficulties. To have balanced healthy conditions, we need a proper path and be able to practice it over a long period of time, then it will benefit all of one’s life with lasting benefits. We must practice the path all our life, constantly remembering it all the time. In this way then every action will be proper, suitable and conducive to the path we are practicing. Make an effort not to be separated from this path. You can develop mental strength through employing skillful means and wisdom as these will make a meaningful future.


    Adopt all good qualities and refrain from impure actions so that at the conclusion of our life we will have collected all the good qualities.


    It is important to collect all the good and positive qualities and to get rid of all impurities. Method and wisdom are inseparable requirements so be sincere your self and for others. It is our responsibility to gather all good qualities and to abandon impurities. Method and wisdom must be together. We can’t do something for others if we lack sincerity. There are many intellectuals around with a lot of knowledge but they lack sincerity in themselves and for others. In the case of some scientists, they have created the atom bomb through finding that atoms can be useful but have also brought the world a lot of problems.


    We need TAB and SHERAB (method and wisdom) to develop a sharp, alert mind. By remembering method and wisdom we will practice the path.


    We must endeavor to take the correct and middle path. In my last teachings I said its good to see the interests of individual students but in a big group like this, it is not possible to know each individual. If we practice and admire the beautiful path then we can obtain peace, happiness and well-being for ourselves , society and the world.


    Thank you very much. 



    (9)  Date Unsure

      To every individual practitioner, or those who have interest in the Dharma, it is very important right from the beginning to check and watch one’s own mind. This is the first and foremost step in the progressive stages of Dharma practice, like learning the basic course of any language. We start with the alphabet, whether it’s English or Hindi or whatever. That too should then follow a systematic course of discipline. It’s the same for every form of study right from the beginning. Thereafter one moves on progressively to higher and further practices and studies. After having completed the basic courses one then proceeds on to more and broader learning and practices.

      

      Then again, one should always keep the mind and body in a relaxed and peaceful way. The pacification of mind is important because we all live in a busy and crowded society. We all tend to have somewhat distracted minds full of various conceptual thoughts and perceptions. This makes it difficult for us to recognize the inherent true nature of the mind and so we become unable to differentiate the conceptual thoughts and the true nature of the mind. Thus we can not control our conceptual thinking nor lessen the passions and our negative thoughts.

      

      Once we have subdued wrong conceptual thinking by pacifying the mind then we will recognize the nature of the mind. Every practice then becomes right.

      

      As was said before, we should always judge ourselves more than we should judge other. The true improvement of one’s practice and conduct will be through checking for one’s own defects, faults and short comings.

      

      It is very usual that most individuals have the habit of judging others rather than judging one’s own mind and actions.  This is actually wrong and won’t help us to progress. So, in brief always judge yourself and your mind as this will improve your practice and you will also be able to recognize the true nature of your mind as well as be of help to others

      

      So after subduing the mind and making the mind stable then this is called Shiney or Calm Abiding (Samatha) and with this practice of Shiney you should do the practice of counting the inhalation and exhalation of the breath..



    (10)  Date Unsure


        Firstly His Holiness gave the oral transmission of the Chenrezig practice.

       

        Now that you have received this transmission you should recite the mantra (OM MANI PADME HUM) whist practicing the visualization of the white four-armed form of Chenrezig but more importantly you should practice compassion whenever possible.

       

        You should also understand that with the recitation of the mantra it is more powerful and meaningful than just merely reciting the words and it is especially more powerful if recited whilst building devotion.

       

        We really need to understand the meaning of compassion and why we should practice it. It is all very well and good to study the Dharma with a teacher but it is even better if we can find out what the meaning of compassion is with in our own experience. Once we know what compassion is then it makes incredibly good sense to us personally. Of course, it is good to study the Dharma with a teacher  because they will introduce our minds to all the enlightening concepts.

       

        In the beginning we cannot say exactly what the fruits of our study and practice will be but once we learn that everything is totally inter-dependent and inter-connected we will take more care of all our actions.

       

        If we really want to help every single sentient being then we can’t just use or two methods. We will need to learn many methods and apply what is necessary according to the vast number of individual requirements.

       

        Also, it might be helpful to know that in the beginning of our study and practice having the mere intention of helping all sentient beings will be of some benefit.  Later, when we will really know how to put this great intention into practice in all our actions then we will truly be able to benefit all sentient beings.



    (11) 20050813


    In the beginning His Holiness gave the oral transmission of Chenrezig practice and mantra.


    Many people know about the practice of Chenrezig but they should try to know the real meaning of Chenrezig. It is not just related to an individual being. To understand Chenrezig in this way is fine but we should not limit our understanding because the true meaning of Chenrezig is an enlightened being who sees all other sentient beings with the eye of compassion all the time. He is not just one individual – every individual who has the quality of being able to look upon all sentient beings with love and compassion is Chenrezig. The practice of compassion is not just a Buddhist practice like those found in the Buddhist sadhanas, it is found in other religions. In other religions there are beings of great love and compassion and these are also related to and one with Chenrezig and not separate individuals.


    I always try to spend my time with various groups and individuals to share with them the Chenrezig practice of compassion not only with Buddhists but with anyone who has the qualities of love and compassion. I don’t try to convert people to Buddhism but rather to encourage them to practice love and compassion.


    Everyone likes the subject of love and compassion very much but when it comes to the practice of love and compassion it is very difficult and also much misunderstood. For example, most people think that compassion means that when someone does something bad to you then you have to have compassion for them. When we apply compassion in that way then there is not much profit for ourselves. It’s not very practical. When some people practice compassion there is a misunderstanding. They think that when someone is suffering they can take their suffering upon themselves but this only brings more suffering. True compassion is not like that.


    This type of practice of compassion, as explained before, where they have to somehow experience the suffering of others, just brings us more suffering and they get lost themselves. What they need to do is see the suffering of others then apply healthy compassion. They need to be more confident to relieve the suffering of self and others. This then becomes true compassion and is very powerful. When we see the suffering of others and the duality of compassion then we need to work for other’s so that it doesn’t bring more pain to us. Compassion then becomes the antidote to suffering.


    When we practice plain compassion it might not be very helpful because when we see someone else suffering then we suffer too! Even if we ourselves have compassion we can’t control the suffering of others. Compassion should be healthy, strong and confident then we can see their suffering and then bring more happiness to others.


    Here’s an example, take the case of a handicapped father who sees his son drowning in the water. He can’t do anything and suffers greatly as he watches on helplessly but in the case of a father who is full of strength, if he sees his son suffering then he can swiftly jump in and rescue the drowning child. Similarly, if our compassion is strong and healthy with full power then we can quickly and effectively help others. If our compassion is not fully mature then who can we effectively help anyone? 



    (12)  20060517


    We have just now started by receiving the oral transmission of the practice of Arya Avalokiteshvara and the six seed syllable, OM MANI PEDME HUNG.


    Firstly, it is very important for all of us to introspect into our own minds. All phenomena are external but involve the mind. You should check your mind and if there is any change. The mind has an inherent capacity to check and see it what's happening in the mind is proper or not.


    There are many individuals here and we all depend upon one another. Everyone is like a teacher for us, helping us to change on minds. One individual's effect can help us to change our attitude.


    Generally, when we encounter differences and problems, different kinds of emotions and feelings arise, such as aggression. Aggression gives us a great deal of suffering for our own mind. Sometimes it is hard to find an antidote immediately and we become incapable of finding power over our own mind. If you are not practitioner then it's even more difficult to transform the negative emotions.


    You should set some time aside if you don't have the power to overcome your negative emotions. These days there are many ways to overcome them. There are many different religions and masters who teach various ways to overcome the negative emotions. You can utilize these different methods, the teachings of other scriptures and your friends. If anger arises then use these different methods to reduce effect of the negativity. Some people can instantly overcome their negativities but most of us have work within our own capacity.


    I suggest you study, recite the scriptures, pray, chant and utilize whatever self-help techniques you know in order to reduce yours and others negativities.



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  • 04/27/13--03:06: Buddha


  • Title: Buddha
    Artist: 17th Gyalwang Karmapa 
    Language: Chinese 



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  • 04/27/13--03:11: Auspicious


  • Title: Auspicious
    Artist: 17th Gyalwang Karmapa 
    Language: Chinese 


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    though 40,
    i am a little child
    devoted to his guru,
    the 17th Karmapa,
    and his retinue.

    Your wings fly
    to North America
    Where Indians once
    roamed freely for Bison.

    I live in the mountainless plains
    and listen to your daily dharma
    springing forth like the winds
    in all directions

    i am born with karma
    and attachments,
    but thinking about you
    i find bodhichitta

    to free all beings from suffering
    to swiftly attain the state of vajradhara
    to love completely without elaboration

    you, my guru,
    speak silently in this room
    through the walls
    you empty space around me
    the house opens to the stars
    boundless light penetrates me
    we are inseparable joy

    illuminating all into the night dream
    of penetrating compassion and wisdom!

    –okiebuddhist




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    His Holiness the 17th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje - A Biography Book Description

    About the Book :

    A fascinating and riveting life sketch of one of the most respected spiritual leaders of our times, which also delves deep into the various facets of Buddhism..

    The seventeenth Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, is the leader of the Karma Kagyu School, one of the four main schools of Tibetan Buddhism. Born in 1985 in eastern Tibet to nomadic parents, he was recognized as the reincarnation of the sixteenth Karmapa who passed away in the US in 1981. He became the first Tibetan reincarnation to be recognized by both the Dalai Lama and the Chinese Government. The 15-year-old monk made headlines when he escaped to India in 2000. Currently living near Dharamshala (in Himachal Pradesh, India), the Karmapa is widely seen as an important spiritual leader of the twenty-first century. Over the past decade and a half, he has grown up into a formidable leader and an impressive orator.

    Behind the façade of scandals and controversies surrounding the Karmapa is an extraordinary young man, full of charisma and intelligence. Yet few know who the Karmapa is and what he believes in. What are his teachings and what is his vision for the world? How is he restoring his 900-year-old Tibetan Buddhist institution of which he is the head?

    In a unique mixture of biography, travelogue and reportage, the author brings alive the life of the Karmapa, who is grappling with immense challenges to modernize spirituality, while keeping its essence alive.

    Here is a timely volume that is highly relevant today given the worldwide attention on the developments in Tibet and its impact on Beijing.

    About the Author :

    Tsering Namgyal have worked as a journalist, writer and editor for over 15 years, which makes him most widely published journalist of Tibetan origin. His articles have appeared in the Asian Wall Street Journal, Asia Times, Himal South Asia, Harvard Asia Pacific Review, Far Eastern Economic Review, amongst others. He hold an MA in Mass Communication and history from University of Minnesota and another MA in Journalism from University of IOWA, where he also studied creative writing. In 2007, he was awarded the Dorothy Mueller Writing Scholarship from University of Lowa. He is currently based in New York and works at a non-profit organization dedicated to education, healthcare and cultural preservation of the Tibetan refugees.

    Book Details


    Title: His Holiness the 17th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje - A Biography
    Publisher: Hay House India
    Author: Tsering Namgyal
    Edition: Paperback
    ISBN:

    9381431876

    EAN:

    9789381431870

    No. of Pages: 300
    Deliverable Countries: This product ships to India, Sri Lanka.


    http://www.infibeam.com/Books/his-holiness-17th-karmapa-ogyen-trinley-dorge-biography-tsering-namgyal/9789381431870.html

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