Tag Archives: discipline

three types of vessles

three types of vessles

The three types of teachings taught to three types of vessels are briefly:

Teachings or the practice that involves abandoning the ten non virtuous actions, applying the ten virtuous actions or thoughts for the sake of next life, better life in the future. And then next life, better life. That is basically what we call teaching taught to the ??? . ???, I don’t know if we should call it lesser. Okay for the time being let’s call it lesser capacity vessels.

For the greater vessels, the teachings and the practice that involves basically ???, or the three kinds of discipline. Which is the discipline of discipline, ???, or the practice of the discipline. Practice of meditation and practice of wisdom. These are generally recommended to those who are greater vessels.

For the greatest vessel, among many other teachings, the practice and the teaching of bodhicitta mind, six paramitas and so on and so forth is emphasized.

Now here one thing we need to note it down is that all three types of teachings taught to three types of vessels are definitely not interested in this life. It has to be something to do beyond this life.

Parting from the four attachments, Nepal June 2009
(->videos on youtube)

Chanakya’s Arthashastra

Chanakya’s Arthashastra

If any of you have read upanishad, this is sort of the root, sort of a text of the hindu or the the hinduism or the hindu culture or whatever. Based on the upanishad, I forgot the century but Chanakya this great strategistian who actually wrote the book called Arthashastra, who was a main adviser, who gave these advices to the Moria kings and therefore the king Ashoka and all of them became so powerful. And these guys they talk about four indispensable sort of strategy of life. It is wonderful and I think it will, I will try to connect it with the parting from the four desire here. I just loosely translate this four points. The first you have to have fun. That is one. And that is fantastic because that is what we want. We have to have fun, we have to really enjoy. I think it is something like karma, really enjoying, fun is the most important. That’s our aim. The second is wealth to achieve this fun. You know you need wealth to get that fun. You have to have some means to collect that fun, establish this fun. The third is discipline to really have this fun. So that I think we all know, vaguely. Any successful MBA teaches this, isn’t it. The discipline, how to make money, how to have fun. This. But the most important the last one what is forgotten by the modern world which is maya, the illusion. And what it means is that actually, you can have fun, you should have lot of wealth to have that fun, and the discipline to have the fun. But you must realize at all times, that three of this, that all three of this is an illusion. At the end of the day, discipline doesn’t work. At the end of the day, wealth doesn’t work. At the end of the day, fun is very relative. As this fourth message, maya, the illusion, when you have that, when you can really digest that information, then you are really a perfect manager of the life. You really know how to manage your life at this point.

Parting from the four attachments, Nepal June 2009
(->videos on youtube)

discipline must be an antidote to an anxiety

discipline must be an antidote to an anxiety

Yes this is a very important one. The discipline must be an antidote to an anxiety or pain. So there is no self flagellation. There is no, what you call it, basically torturing yourself. The discipline of the buddhadharma has to be the antidote to the pain, not creator of the pain.

Parting from the four attachments, Nepal June 2009
(->videos on youtube)

discipline must qualify as a stepping stone to enlightenment

discipline must qualify as a stepping stone to enlightenment

The second connotation or the second element of the discipline, this discipline must qualify, this discipline must be able to use as a step, stepping stone, or a step, steps, that takes you to enlightenment. What a profound statement, it is so profound. It so profound because here already here already Drakpa Gyaltsen is indicating discipline is not enlightenment, this is a very important thing to know. Many people are so attached to discipline. They think that is the it. They are so attached to the discipline. But Drakpa Gyaltsen is saying, discipline is a step towards, it has to work as a step towards enlightenment. It is not the enlightenment but it has to be a step, steps towards the enlightenment.

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discipline must bear the fruit of higher birth

discipline must bear fruit of higher birth

Noble or higher birth is basically defined by how much capacity or ability one have when it comes to judging what is good for oneself and what is bad for oneself. For instance, okay again don’t jump into a very quick conclusion and go bananas about animal rights and all of that. Here, in the Buddhist teachings, human birth, heavenly birth or the god realms, they are considered higher birth. And this is really absolutely has nothing to do with Buddhist being anti animal or something like that. It is all purely based on how much capacity, like animal, actually even within the human realm you can say there is, certain birth are more noble than the others. Again, this has nothing to do with the caste system, again. One has to clarify this.

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post pasta depression

post pasta depression

Of course there are many different kind of discipline one can engage with. Even to free ourselves from post pasta depression one needs discipline. If you think that you are overweight you should have discipline of not eating pasta. But because when the pasta is in front of you with all the right sauce and arrangement and all the hype of so and so restaurant is the best in this and that, you end up eating, first you think well maybe just one spoon. You ended up eating all. At that time while you are gulping down the pasta it is very delicious and blissful. But once you finished the pasta then you go through the post pasta depression. So there are even a small suffering like overeating even that requires discipline. And when you do actually, apply the discipline of just eating vegetables or salads or whatever, the whole day you feel that you have achieved something. Whole day, the day is kind of at least not too much anxiety.

Parting from the four attachments, Nepal June 2009
(videos)

refuge discipline

refuge discipline

Okay. So now, where does the discipline comes in. For someone who has taken refuge lets say to the Dharma. For someone who has taken refuge to the Dharma, meaning for someone who has genuinely accepted that all compounded things are impermanent, or many other aspects, or everything is interdependent, everything depends on cause, condition, and effect. So on and so forth. So if you have accepted that truth, it does not make sense, by doing something opposite such as harming others. This is why when you harm somebody you are forgetting that cause and condition exist. You are forgetting, on many levels, that everything is interdependent. Harming somebody, this is on the most beginner level by the way. Actually means that you are forgetting the fact or the truth that everything is interdependent. Similarly, if you have taken refuge to the Buddha, it doesn’t make sense – a little bit more on the Dharma. If you have taken refuge to the Dharma, it doesn’t make sense by practicing another path that believes in extreme view. If it is an interfaith religious conference, again I have to be hypocritical and I have to sort be careful, oh ya ya all religion are same. You know like everything leads to the heaven and all of that. But that’s actually a bullshit. Because it is not. I am not saying that the other religion are bad. Definitely not. In fact the great Nyingmapa master Longchenpa he said that all religion, anything that believes in some kind of a right and wrong, is, what you call it, indirect teaching of the Buddha. So we cannot really leave out anything. But what I am saying is every religion, every path have their own aim. Buddhism is a path of no extreme. Buddhism is path of non duality. If you follow that it doesn’t make sense by practicing – there are people who sort of say I am kind of practicing both Buddhism and Christianity. It doesn’t work. If you want to practice buddhadharma, then anything that believes in extreme view that such as truly existing god, permanently existing god, truly existing heaven, truly existing sort of soul that is full of sin. All of this, they contradict. So one has to choose. If you are going to Kathmandu you go to Kathmandu. You don’t go to Delhi. You cant do it together. So this is the discipline you have to take. You have to really take this discipline. Similarly if you have taken refuge to the Sangha, ???, you are not supposed to have people who follow the extreme view as your spiritual companion. Spiritual companion you should underline that. I think you can go for a drink of a beer or hang around in the bar talk about other things. But someone as a spiritual friend, meaning someone who will give you the influence of extreme view. If you hang around with a person who can slowly or with a speed give you the influence that if you kill chicken every day you will go to heaven and there you will be greeted by, you will be greeted by not so fresh virgin girls. How is that? It’s only chicken you see, there are other levels too. Things like that. If you have, if you want to follow that, then that’s up to you. The discipline is that you have to follow this. Basically what I am trying to tell you is the Buddhist discipline has nothing to do with monotheistic discipline. In the monotheistic discipline if you, you have to follow this. If you follow the other you are doomed or something like that. And this is only the right way. That is what monotheistic I believe discipline. In Buddhist thing, it is very very practical, it is very logical. It is simply that if you believe in that, if you want to follow a path that believes in interdependent reality, then it doesn’t make sense to follow also – you know it doesn’t make sense, you believe in the path of interdependence, call it, interdependent origination. By around three o’clock you switch to something that believes in a truly existing, independently existing path. This is very, is not imposing, it is a choice. It is a privilege, that if you want to partake, it is up to you. But if you do it, and if you want to achieve a certain goal, then you have to take this discipline.

Parting from the four attachments, Nepal June 2009
(videos)

the first thing you do

the first thing you do

The discipline is the foundation. And in order to generate this, to discipline ourselves there are many many many methods of disciplining oneself. But everything can be abbreviated and concise into taking refuge to buddha, dharma and sangha. Once you take refuge to the buddha, dharma and sangha whole heartedly, from the depth of your heart, without any doubt, you will, most of the other discipline will automatically easily emerge. This is why refuge, practice of the refuge, in all the Buddhist traditions, not only in the Mahayana or the Vajrayana, in the Shravakayana, everywhere, the first thing you do is take refuge to the Buddha, Dharma and Sangha.

Parting from the four attachments, Nepal June 2009
(videos)

most concise form of discipline

most concise form of discipline

So here as in many others commentaries I will take the chance to talk about the refuge, because the discipline fundamentally in the buddhadharma, the most precise and most concise form of discipline is disciplining oneself by taking refuge to the Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. And I don’t want to go too intellectual here but it is important if you are serious in pursuing this spiritual path you also take the vow of refuge such as what we did just now before we began our teachings we did Sangye cho dang tsok kyi chog nam la, jang chub bar du dag gi jin gyat su chi, so we take that kind of vow. Vow is important. If you have a vow you accumulate merit lot faster. I will give you one example. Let’s say we human beings we have not taken a vow. Okay lets say many of us we have not taken a vow. Many of us, many human beings don’t take vows of not killing. Not killing. So they don’t kill, see people don’t go at this moment, this morning maybe, outside, inside here we don’t go around killing people or killing animals. But if you have not taken a vow it doesn’t mean that you are accumulating merit. You are not killing anybody because you just don’t have a time or you don’t have the energy or you don’t have the weapons to kill, it’s too boring anyway. It’s too hassled, so much hassle so why do it. So you don’t have a bad karma, you don’t have a good karma, you have nothing. You are just not killing, that is all. But for someone like here maybe most of you, like the Bikshus here, you have taken a vow, I shall not kill. As part of the, let’s say, part of the vow of refuge. From then on, once you have taken the vow, from then on, every second every moment when you don’t kill such as while you are dozing off, you are accumulating the merit. And this is why the vow is quite important.

Parting from the four attachments, Nepal June 2009
(videos)

much more profound level of discipline is absolutely necessary

much more profound level of discipline is absolutely necessary

So if you are talking about the general discipline, even the mundane secular worldly discipline is very important. In fact this is what is taught by the great social thinker should I call them like Confucius, like in India maybe books like Arthashastra by Chanakya. They are to really have a framework of how to have a content wealthy and not dysfunctional life. Now in the spiritual path we are aiming higher, we are not only looking for a functional society, functional family, wealth, health. We are aiming for enlightenment, we are – and specially in the Mahayana path we are not only aiming enlightenment for myself, ourselves, we are aiming enlightenment for everyone, every being. So therefore a much more profound level of discipline is absolutely necessary.

Parting from the four attachments, Nepal June 2009
(videos)

not really necessary

not really necessary

To live abundantly, again if we talk about living in abundance and kind of more flexible way, we don’t really have to go to the shopping and buy things as if you are going to live another thousand years. No one has kind of managed to live longer than a hundred and fifty years maybe. That maybe the longest. Not even that, most of us we die much earlier. Ninety, eighty. So if we think in this term, really, most of the things that we buy, most of the things that we build, most of the things that we plan, it is not really necessarily. And this comes because there is a lack of discipline.

Parting from the four attachments, Nepal June 2009
(videos)

never really pro discipline

never really pro discipline

As many of you you should know, you would know, we have been recently suffering with the economic downturn. Credit crunch and all that. See, credit crunch. Where does that come from? Lack of discipline. The modern world is so diligent and efficient in destroying your discipline. Very simple example is the cash and the credit card. When you have a cash, at the least there is a more chance that you have a discipline because it sort of goes out. But credit card no, because you don’t see the cash. But it is running somewhere. Discipline is difficult in the modern world, like just now the example that I gave you. Our society is not helping us, the television doesn’t help us, advertisement doesn’t help us. Our education, the modern education is never really pro discipline. It is actually to make you want more, make you think that you need this, you need that. Like the iPhone and the the cover for iPhone. You are always forced to think that you need this, you want this. You need this, yes that is what they make you think. So in this midst of all this, discipline is going to be difficult. Not only collectively, individually.

Parting from the four attachments, Nepal June 2009
(videos)

discipline

discipline

Nagarjuna said, tsultrim or the discipline is like the fertile ground where you can actual do things. It will bear fruit when you have a fertile ground. You can’t plant a potato on a naked table. But if you have a fertile ground you have a hope. I mean much more than a hope, you can do it, and it is more likely, much more likely it will happen. So discipline is very necessary. The moment the word discipline is uttered, it is a very scary thing, the discipline is a very scary. Oh my god what is he going to tell us? Is he going to tell us to become monk. Refrain from, I don’t know, chicken. Refrain from, drinking boiled water or something like that? Discipline is not always something nice to hear but it’s kind of unfortunate because actually the Buddhist word discipline, in Sanskrit I think it is sometimes called shila which also has the connotation of cooling. It is actually quite pleasant. Discipline is crucial. I will tell you something. The modern day people have on big problem. Depression. So many people have depression problem. We have everything now. Everything we have. Still people have depression problem. I come to a conclusion. Actually most of our depression comes from lack of discipline. And I am not even talking about discipline of something religious discipline. Some kind of, even a mundane discipline will do. Like everyday between certain hour like between 7.30 and 7.35 I will tidy up my room. And you do it every day. Such discipline will actually give you less depression. Because right now, most of the depression comes because you are free to do everything what you like. And this is ?? how to begins actually, how to do things. Discipline is necessary.

Parting from the four attachments, Nepal June 2009
(videos)

breaking the most important discipline

breaking the most important discipline

If you can enlighten sentient beings then a Bodhisattva must do that. If he or she doesn’t do that you are breaking the most important discipline. You are not being disciplined in the most important way.

Outer, Inner and Secret Refuge, London 2010

in order to enlighten sentient beings

in order to enlighten sentient beings

Now for the Mahayana and therefore for the Vajrayana there is an extra discipline. The extra discipline is ???, the discipline of benefiting others. And this is what actually, I love the Indian thinking. So amazing. Even, forget Buddhism, even the standard Indian, what you call it, concept of strategy in our life so to speak, I am generalizing this, I am simplifying this so much. Just this is very, this are Indian thinking, and the Indian thinking always have this kind of treasure, I think it is a treasure, which is like in the Arthashastra of Chāṇakya , he said: In order to have a fulfilling life, you have to have four strategy. You should have fun he says, you should have fun. You should have money to have fun. And you should have the discipline to have the money and the fun. Now this much I think everybody got it. But what we forgot is the fourth one which is so important. The fourth one is moksha, and the end of the day one who is trying to have fun, one who is trying to make money to have fun, one who is trying to have discipline to have fun and making money, they must realize, none of this works. This you have to realize. And this is, similarly here also it is like that. In the Mahayana, we have the discipline of refraining from doing wrong things and thinking wrong things. We have a discipline of gathering doing right things and all the enlightened qualities and all of that. But for Mahayana, for the Bodhisattva, even more importantly you have to have a discipline that if it is benefiting others, if it is to enlighten others, the two other discipline must be erased. In order to enlighten sentient beings, other sentient beings, if you don’t lie – let’s say if you are lying can enlighten somebody, big lie, not small lies like I haven’t seen him, you know not like that. Very very big lies. The only three things that you are not allowed to is covetous mind, harmful mind and wrong view. Other than that, anything is acceptable. If you don’t do it actually, if you don’t steal, rob a bank even, and if it is benefiting sentient beings, benefiting meaning not just to give them food and clothing or shelter, enlightening sentient beings.

Outer, Inner and Secret Refuge, London 2010

Shravakayana level of discipline

Shravakayana level of discipline

In the Shravakayana which the Theravada is part of, most of the discipline, all the discipline actually comes within the two kind of category. Now bear in mind that these kind of categorizations usually come from the Mahayana okay. But I think it still would help. The discipline is what we call ???. ??? is the discipline of refraining from doing wrong things like killing, stealing. I guess this is where all the morality and ethic that conventional people talk about also falls into but it is very big. So basically it is a discipline to protect us from doing wrong things. That’s one category. The second category is ???, a discipline to gather enlightened qualities. So the discipline to protect us from wrong doing and discipline to increase enlightened attributes, qualities and actions such as shamata, vipassana. So one disciplines oneself with the shamata, vipassana, robes, not eating after midday. All of that. I am telling you this because I want to actually tell you that so called the Buddhist discipline is really nothing cultural. It has to have this understanding, it is not just because Indian love to shave their hair, that’s why the monks are supposed to, you know those days. You know it is really, it should go beyond the culture although of course many elements of the culture cannot be escaped. So that is more of the Shravakayana level of discipline.

Outer, Inner and Secret Refuge, London 2010

just sitting for three minutes

just sitting for three minutes

Okay, so what we are going to do is we are going to sit straight for three minutes only. And a few disciplines. Everything what we do has to have some discipline. You know even like not doing anything has some discipline. Even like really just hanging out needs some discipline. Because if you don’t hang out, if you don’t know how to hang out properly so to speak then it’s not really hanging out. Then you are engaging, you are already busy, you are already stressed. So everything needs discipline. Making a tea needs a discipline, making a coffee needs a discipline. Everything. So some kind of discipline is necessary. So in this case our discipline is to sit straight. I guess you are allowed to breath in and out. You can blink, no, you can swallow saliva. This is more for me than for you. And yes of course you are allowed to think whatever you want to think. I mean how can I control that one. But other than that, no scratching, no yawning, no coughing. No sort of moving for this three minutes. And no visualization or anything like that sort. No visualizations. Whatever you are thinking, just noticing it and be aware of it. And that’s all. Not, if some hideous thought comes, not trying to get rid of it. If some really amazing good compassionate kind thought comes, not trying to register this. If amazing idea comes, also not really immediately writing it down or trying to think about it. Nothing like that. So before we do this, why don’t you cough and do whatever you need to do, scratch. Okay. So you are comfortable now? Okay we will start now.

Outer, Inner and Secret Refuge, London 2010

buddhist discipline

buddhist discipline

There are many different methods of discipline in Buddhism. Myriad in fact. One method, or the morality or discipline that is prescribed in one particular teaching almost contradicts with another morality or method or discipline in other Buddha’s teachings. For instance, you know this is actually why ordinary people not knowing the ultimate aspect or nonduality there is so many misunderstandings. For instance like if you go to traditional Buddhist societies or countries like Thailand or Sri Lanka. There the monks would eat meat. It is not because they are allowed to eat meat but they are supposed to eat whatever is given or offered on that day. But then again if you go to places like Japan or China, the Mahayana practitioners, for them the discipline is no meat at all. So there is already some kind of a contradiction within the Buddhist discipline. There is so many of that. What is allowed to one person is not allowed for others. And then for Tantrayana practitioners, many people seem to have misconception that tantric people are allowed to doing lots of things that are not allowed to others which is not true. There is never an allowance, there is never – to be more precise, there is no, it’s like methods or the disciplines such as shaving hair in Buddhism for the monks is purely a skillful means. So in other words what I am saying is again, nonduality have to take the precedence, or nonduality is more important than shaving hair or not shaving. It is to understand the nonduality, it is to actualize the nonduality the discipline such as like monks vow or nuns precept vows are applied. Purely to understand the nonduality. See if, again, if we loose the nonduality and if Buddhism really puts an importance to the morality then it will become very dangerous. Because then a value of a practitioner will be judged by who is morally good and right. And this is very dangerous because many times we know that morally somebody could be – of course we are using a very big language, morality. Somebody could be very good with the morality but they may have no compassion, they may have no understanding of the truth. And because there is no understanding of the truth, and because of that there is no compassion. The morality actually becomes a pillar for our pride and arrogance. So the whole purpose of morality is again defeated.

Teaching in Brighton, November 2008

thinking Buddhism is a discipline

thinking Buddhism is a discipline

Why are we becoming Buddhist? Why are we following the Dharma, the path of Dharma. And what is it that we are following? I think for many of us we think Buddhism is just a discipline. It is a discipline. It is some form of an ethic. Specially Confucius people like us. We love ethic. We strive based on ethic. We have heard a lot to be obedient to the father and the mother, the grandparents, the ancestors, the master. All of that. Yes. And I have a feeling that again this sense of putting too much emphasize on ethic, morality and discipline is overwriting the real Buddhism. Real Buddhism, as we talked yesterday, is an art to destroy the paranoia. An art to destroy obsession. Remember the example of shoes, the bed room shoes, when you manage to throw up in the sky and then you relax. That is Buddhism. Really. CCL, couldn’t care less. That is real Buddhism. But we instead try to become, we have become so paranoid.

The Three Levels of Perception, Singapore 2003