Tag Archives: meditation

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)

general meaning of meditation

canceling each other out

Meditation generally means – okay we can through some of the terms. One of the tibetan word, ?..?, that is a very big word by the way. ?..? has a connotation of equality or equanimity which also indicates or refers to non-duality. ?..? is like really leaving it alone. Not poking, not altering, not fabricating, just leaving it alone. Keeping it as it is. Not altering. Not posing. Not leaving things as they are or as fit is. That is definition of ?..? which is also another name for meditation.

This is not possible if you have attachment to this life. Because if you have attachment to this life you cannot afford not to pose. You cannot afford not to fabricate. You have to always alter. Because that is the ultimate aim.

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

trying to meditate with attachment to this life

not being free for meditation

If you have attachment to this life and if you meditate, even though you are somewhere very very quite, isolated, doing retreat, in reality you have ???. ??? means you are busy, you have engagement. Because you are engaged with, because you have attachment to this life. So you are busy, you are occupied, you are not free basically.
Such kind of meditation will just cause arrogance, so that condemning or criticizing those who doing the hearing and contemplation. Such kind of meditation will just create envy and jealousy towards those who also meditate. Such kind of meditation even though it is labelled as a meditation it is nothing more than a subtle or a big distraction. It is basically a distraction.

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

meditation based on attachment to this life

meditation based on attachment to this life

Meditation is really indispensable, you cannot do without meditation. But if you do meditation based on attachment to this life which is the spa meditation. You know the spa meditation, the health oriented meditation is all to make your this life, this life mind healthy. So can you see, it is actually, contradiction is maybe not the right word. Maybe it is. In the spas generally meditation is advertised to calm your mind, to free you from stress. But what is it that is making you stressed the most. It is attachment to this life. That is making you really go through the stress. So to keep the agenda to build your life intact, you keep the agenda of making the life, attachment to this life intact, and then try to free from stress it is a bit of a contradiction.

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

meditation without vow

meditation without vow

So meditation is quite popular, meditation is really, people I think are attracted to meditation. But what I want to point out is, if you don’t have dompa or the vow then meditation that without the dompa or the vow, specially something like the refuge, meditation is really not even a gewa or not even a virtue. It is not even a virtue. It is just a technique to calm your mind. I am not saying that you should not do it, no no, of course not, by all means. If you are asking me without the dompa or the vow, what is meditation for me. I would sooner go to a sauna or have a massage. Because after all might also relax you. Or go walk in an english garden or something. Because anything that would calm your mind, you can just do it. So meditation is nothing special basically, that is what I am saying, if you don’t have the vow. Of course I am coming from the Mahayana point of view. It is only when you have a vow, and specially something like having taken refuge to the buddha, dharma and the sangha, then your hearing, your contemplation, and specially your meditation is becoming very special. So really the vow is the most important.

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

awareness of thoughts

meditation and refuge

As it is explained in many of the meditation teachings, first of all you cannot stop thoughts. It is impossible. And stopping the thought is not our agenda. It is not doable. Even it is doable it is not necessary, it is useless. Meditation actually is to generate the awareness of the thought. If you are supposed to develop the awareness of the thought, then you have to have the thought to be aware of. So you can’t really get rid of the thought and then try to look at something.

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

tools to analyze

tools to analyze

Okay, of course we will visit this last point [view of non-grasping] as I said many times again. But for now we contemplate, I mean we listen, we contemplate, we analyze. We do all of this with the help of teacher. Reading books such Chandrakirti’s Madhyamikavatara, Dharmakirti’s I don’t know, all the karikas basically. Aryadeva’s Four Hundred Shlokas of Madhyamika. And of course how can I forget Nagarjuna’s Madhyamika Mulakarika I think. And Shantarakshita’s Madhyamika Alankara. Very important text. Specially if you love logic. In these text, these great masters of the past have given us tools to analyze. They have given us the sample of how to analyze things, wonderful samples. For instance like, out of their compassion, they even have all the process of analysis. In order to establish the view they have in their texts record of the argument between the great Hindu philosophies, Samkhyas, Shravakas, these are Hindu’s by the way, and then the Buddhist, I mean including the Cittamatra school, including, if it is a Prasangika Madhyamika, including even the Svatantrika Madhyamika, there is an argument. All this is, actually we as a follower of, and specially if you are a practitioner, we should not read them as some kind of a philosophical entertainment. They are there given as sample, as a tool, for us to really analyze. And it is really wonderful, the way they analyze things. And after using these tools to analyze, you may gain a little bit of confidence with the view such as emptiness. Such as, now, this is it, we cant go further than that. Once you achieve that confidence, then you have to meditate. No more contemplation, no more analysis. Because analysis and contemplation will never end until your thoughts end. There is always going to be a reason. Somewhere you will have to really learn to really not, learn to even analyse the analysis tool. And really come to an conclusion that you have to transcend the mind of analysis. This is where meditation comes in.

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

getting accustomed to

Meditation is quite vast. At glance, the moment we say meditation I think it automatically refers to something like sitting straight, sitting in a quite place, cross-leg and all that. But to be more specific, actually meditation is not necessarily that. You know in the Buddhist practice advice we talk about post meditation and meditation stage. Post meditation is equally important if not more occasion to practice the spiritual path. When we talk about meditation, actually the clearest way to, or sort of the easiest way to get used to the idea of meditation is something to do with getting accustomed to. As many of you who are following the Dakpo Kagyu tradition you know, Jamgon Kongtrul Lodro Thaye said: ?..? Even though there is nothing to meditate upon, there is something to get used to. Getting used to or getting accustomed to is basically what all the dharma practice, every method from a simple offering of an incense or circumambulation to all the exotic rituals that we witness they are all actually to get accustomed to something. What are we trying to get accustomed to. We are trying to get accustomed to the truth.

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

we will do a little bit of meditation

we will do a little bit of meditation

So anyway, we will do a little bit of meditation. But in order to do meditation, we need to have things like lu en or sem en. Lu en means like kind of loosely translating isolating your form, your body,sem en isolating or retreating or actually I like to even use the word confinement. Confining your body and mind. Lu en, to isolate your body or your form, of course you can go to the mountains, forest, under the tree, where there is nobody and so on and so forth. It helps, it helps a lot, but if you don’t have it does not mean that the Buddhist meditation will end up, you will not having a buddhist meditation if you don’t have forest and caves. Basically the essence of lu en or isolating your body is sitting straight. Because when you sit straight then all this, Vairocana posture and all of that, I am sure, maybe lama can explain, but basically when you sit straight and do not respond to your physical needs, like you want to stretch, you want to yawn, you want to sort of move, if you don’t entertain them and if you really do not, if your phone rings suddenly, do not respond to that. If you suddenly remember that you didn’t close your window properly. Or I don’t know, if you have a mosquito sitting on your nose, and then you think about malaria and all of that, instead of shooing it away. Not responding to that just basically isolating yourself from these kind of distraction.

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they are basically same

they are basically same

I am sure many of you have been to many different meditation teachings. They are basically same. Essentially. Really. Whether you go to Burma, Sri Lanka, Goenkas, actually even the Goenkas, and then who else? The Mahayana, in Japan, Zen. Tibetan, the Mahamudra, Mahasandhis, Whatever. Basically Buddha never ever said you should dwell in the past. Okay. Never he said that. He also has never said you should dwell on the future.

You know this ten days are supposedly retreat. In Tibetan word it is called tsam. It is kind of boundary. I don’t know what english word retreat means, but it is kind of a boundary, you are creating a boundary. Ideally you are supposed to not visit the past and not visit the future. You stay within the boundary of presentness. This maybe little difficult for all of us.

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this is something the enjees do

this is something the enjees do

I don’t know in Tibet, the Tibetan culture somehow, I don’t know somehow the monks, the lamas like myself, we are sort of influenced to do lots of reading, lots of ritual, pujas and stuff like that. So much so that nowadays younger monks when we say oh we should meditate they almost feel embarrassed. Oh this is something the enjees do. This is something like the westerner do. This is not for us kind of thing. That is really sad.

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

difference between contemplation and meditation

difference between contemplation and meditation

Student: Rinpoche you are telling us that we should hear, contemplate, and meditate. I am little bit confused what is the difference between contemplation and meditation. And if you can explain.

Oh, contemplation has lots of analysis. Contemplation has lots of chattering. Chattering. Like talking, lots of talking. Oh this is not right, this is right, no no this is not right. Like that. This is good for me, that is not good for me, like that. You analyze. Contemplation. Argument. Lot of argument to yourself. Meditation, no chattering at all. We will talk little bit about meditation, and actually, maybe not today but from tomorrow onwards, we will do every day some mediation maybe I try to explain a little bit about meditation. Basically it is remaining with a one pointed mind. For instance you are sitting and meditating, and you are supposed to, I don’t know, look at this tissue, box. So then you are just looking at it. You are looking at it right, you are looking at it. Now if your mind is asking you, are you looking at it, while you are meditating. If your mind is asking you, are you looking at it, then you are not meditating. Then you are contemplating. Because you are asking are you looking at it. Similar if you are meditating on this, and you think today I am not looking at my tissue thing at all. Then again you are not meditating. You are contemplating. So there is a big difference.

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

meditation and refuge

meditation and refuge

Meditation is a relative, it is a relative refuge. It is not an ultimate refuge by the way. Even though it sounds very important. In buddhism, in buddhadharma, we do meditation. And in many levels it is a practice of taking refuge.

Outer, Inner and Secret Refuge, London 2010

contemplation and meditation

contemplation and meditation

Student: Thank you Rinpoche for the illustrations. Would you explain the difference between contemplation and meditation.

Oh, contemplation has a lot of analysis. Is this it, is this not it, am I doing right. You know, no no, Nagarjuna said this, not like that. It is not as much like a reading or a hearing, listening, it’s more like you making lots of stories in your head, debating. When you meditate, specially when you meditate, you see after hearing and contemplation you then come to some kind of a conclusion. Right? You have to come to a conclusion. Once you come to that conclusion, meditation you then no more you do the analysis. You basically try to get used to that conclusion. Meditation in Tibetan, many times, the Tibetan word for meditation is gom. Gom has this connotation of getting accustomed to whatever that view.

Teaching in Brighton, November 2010

logic

logic

You know the logic is very limited. Logic is very very limited. Logic is a very good tool. Even in the Buddhist studies actually we spend a lot of time studying Buddhist logic. It is called pramana. Actually like standard Buddhist philosophy student will spend almost six years just study Buddhist logic. Very important. But we have always been told that the logic we study to value and to validate the view. This is always for the purpose though. Once you establish the view then you see – I think the Buddhist concept of hearing, contemplation and meditation, you must have heard this, this is a very important one. I don’t know, I dare say, I don’t know maybe I am totally wrong, this is probably a concept west doesn’t have. Maybe west has hearing and contemplation. Meditation I don’t know, maybe they have it in their own sort of way but for, specially for a spiritual path meditation is so important, so important. Because the logic alone cannot, logic can only bring you from A to maybe D. You know, A B – C –- D. That is about it then the logic will collapse. From there – but it has done its good job you know. Because somewhere when you are around C lots of dreams and physical experience and things like light coming from the nostrils and you know like visions of the Buddha and you know like sharman is coming inside you and stuff like, that will come and those are very dangerous. So for that you need logic. And once you combat them then what you need? You need daringness. Daringness. And what do I mean by daringness? I was telling earlier. To be useless.

Teaching in Brighton, November 2010

the moment insecurity hits you

the moment insecurity hits you

When we meditate, sitting like twenty minutes of doing nothing, just sitting. We didn’t do even all the rest of the three mindfulness. We were just doing the body. Just sitting. What are we doing? We are, the moment the insecurity hits you, instead of putting on a fashion, I don’t know, combing your hair, what are we doing? We do nothing. We refrain doing those things, we retreat ourself doing these things. Basically we just sit. Like Shantideva said, like a ???, piece of wood basically. Like, you just sit. Okay, all this lifetimes, the moment insecurity hits you, you have learned one trick which is respond to it. Either bad way or good way, you have learned that trick. In the ???, you do the opposite. The moment insecurity hits you, you do nothing, neither good nor bad. You just sit. What does it do. It actually sends a message to your mind, and your mind gets really puzzled. Because in the past, your mind wants something, and then you deliver, you try to deliver anyway. You think of something good, bad, whatever. It’s bit like this, it’s bit like – this is maybe not the best example – let’s say there is a battery, there is a battery. And this battery gets charged every time you touch this a little bit. The battery gets charged. It doesn’t matter how you touch, whether you touch stroke, gently, or you hit it. It doesn’t matter. Both way it charges. Just like that, our insecurity, our emotions are just like that battery. Now how do you want this battery to be worn out. Don’t do anything, then it slowly – it has to survive on its own energy and it has to spend its own energy so it exhausts. In the past, when the emotion arise, you poke it, you alter it, you try to do something. As an ordinary human being, you actual get into the anger, jealousy, pride. Of course that is very much touching this battery. As a Buddhist you try to pray, you try to sort of think it is bad. I shouldn’t do this. This is also a gentle way of touching but nevertheless it is a touching. What do you do now. You don’t do anything. You just let it be. When you let this be, then it exhaust its own energy. What does this do. It sends a very specific signal to this insecurity. Its actually making this insecurity or this self face the reality, face the truth. It really forces it to face the truth. And once you faith the truth, you will be very very surprised. You will be like – let’s say you actually experience falling from a cliff. And you just manage to grab hold a dead grass as you are falling. And then you are just hanging there, because of this dead grass. You are just hanging there. And you are so paranoid. Only to find out there is only two inch you are on the earth. There is nowhere to fall. I mean it is really save. The insecurity of the self, clinging to the self, this is what you have to face. And this is what things like mindfulness do, it really forces you.

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

just sitting

just sitting

Correct me if I pronounce it wrong, I think in Japan they call it shikantaza. What it means is just sitting. You don’t do anything, just sit. Now any intellectual people will argue with that, “Ah, just sitting. You don’t know, accumulation of merit”. But if you read the Japanese Zen masters teaching like Dogen Zenji, it is amazing, because the word just, that is like a Pandora Box. You open that word just, it can mean all kind of things. You know in a way, the Tibetan word ??? has a lot to do with the just. This just is such a beautiful word. Okay we will sit again, just sit.

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