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BLISSFUL RAYS OF THE MANDALA IN THE SERVICE OF OTHERSBLISSFUL RAYS OF THE MANDALA IN THE SERVICE OF OTHERS
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LAMA YESHES WISDOM6 Taking Suffering and Giving HappinessBy Lama Yeshe
ADVICE FROM THE VIRTUOUSFRIEND11 Fighting for FreedomBy Lama Zopa Rinpoche
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COVER:Portrait of Lama Yeshe, 1975. With the idea of com-missioning a statue of Lama Yeshe, Mummy Max (MaxMatthews) arranged for a series of shots taken just of hishead from every angle, as well as photos of Lama in med-itation posture. Photo taken on Saka Dawa (the cele-bration of Buddhas birth, enlightenment and death) atChenrezig Institute, Australia, 1975. Photo donated byWendy Finster. Courtesy of Lama Yeshe WisdomArchive.
fpmt Mandala eZineCONTENTS
February 2011 MANDALA EZINE 3
Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive contains recordings and transcripts
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LIFE, DEATH, AND AFTER DEATHby lama yesheedited by nicholas ribush120 pages, free
Tibetan Buddhism teaches us to understand the death process and trains us to deal with it so that when the time of crisis arrives and the various illusory visions arise, instead of being confused, well know whats going on and will recognize illusions as illusions, projections as projections and fantasies as fantasies.
TEACHINGS FROM THE MEDICINE BUDDHA RETREAT
by lama zopa rinpocheedited by ailsa cameron458 pages, $20
Teachings from Land of Medicine Buddha October-November 2001
KADAMPA TEACHINGSby lama zopa rinpocheedited by ailsa cameron288 pages, free
Commentary on essential pieces of advice from Kadampa Geshes.
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6 MANDALA EZINE February 2011
Lama Yeshes WISDOM
We are most fortunate to have been able topinpoint attachment as the greatest of allproblems. When we speak of evil, demons andso forth, its the inner devil of attachment weretalking about. Even though for countless livesweve looked outside ourselves for the source ofour problems, theres nothing external to blame.Therefore we should rejoice that we have finallyidentified this inner cause of all suffering.
We can be quite foolish. Say youre in aspooky old house somewhere with a couple offriends. Its late at night and youre watching horror movies on TV. One of your friends says,Dont go into the basement; theres somethingevil down there. Then, if you do have to godown to the basement, you feel scared: Therereally is something evil down here. Youre so easily prone to superstition. This is completelysilly. Theres no such thing as external evil andfear of it is simply a projection of the evil in yourown mind. If you speculate enough, your super-stitious mind is sure to produce something, andwhere once you were unafraid, you now feel fear.All such foolishness comes from attachment.
Therefore finally recognizing that all thesenegative things demons, enemies, evil orwhatever other terms are used in everyday conversation, science or religion come fromthe inner demon of attachment and bravelychanging attachment to oneself into concernfor others is both wonderful and wise.
There are countless living beings on Earthbut very few know about exchanging self andothers. This practice may be very difficultbut its extremely worthwhile. If you can doit, it will help solve all your problems.
Changing your outlook in this way trans-forms whatever misery you perceive into thepeaceful path of liberation.
We desperately need a method such as this.Life is suffering; our minds are weak. Exchangingself and others is truly revolutionary and thisinner revolution, which has nothing to do withradical external change, completely turns ourmental attitude upside down.
If you were to think that Buddhism was simply about sitting in meditation practicingconcentration, you might reject it: My kneeshurt; my body wasnt built for this. Buddhism isjust a Himalayan lama thing. Anyway, I cantlive without working and taking care of myworldly affairs. Dharma is not for me. But Mahayana Buddhism is about much more thanjust sitting in concentration. If you are wise, youcan practice 24 hours a day.
Whenever any difficulty or problem arises,instead of getting depressed, be brave. Think,Fantastic. If this problem had not arisen I mighthave felt I had no problems. This problem is myteacher; all problems are my teacher. They giveme knowledge-wisdom and help me recognizemore clearly the nature of attachment. This is sowonderful. May all mother sentient beingsproblems ripen upon me right now and maythey receive all my merit, fortune and wisdom.
If you have difficulty taking the suffering ofothers onto yourself, first practice on yourself.The next time your knees hurt when youre sitting in meditation, take that pain onto yourego and let it freak out. Let your ego freak outmore and more. Practice that for a week.
Then practice taking onto yourself all the
Taking Suffering and Giving HappinessBy Lama Yeshe
February 2011 MANDALA EZINE 7
Lama Yeshe at Kopan Monastery in Kathmandu, 1974. Courtesy of Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive.
8 MANDALA EZINE February 2011
Lama Yeshes WISDOM
suffering you have ever experienced in yourlife. Your ego and attachment wont like thateither, but let them freak out again. Thenslowly, slowly extend your practice to takeupon yourself the sufferings of your parents,your friends, all the people in your country andall the people on Earth until you are receivingthe problems and suffering of all sentient beings throughout the universe. Then, withouthesitation, send out to them all your posses-sions, happiness and merit.
What is the technique for actually practic-ing this taking and giving meditation, which Tibetans call tong-len? You combine it with meditation on the breath in what is basically anine-round breathing meditation.
Start by breathing out through your rightnostril. Visualize the air you exhale in the formof white light, the essence of which is all yourpositive energy and wisdom. This white light radiates to all sentient beings in the six realmsof samsara and beyond. It enters their left nostril,goes into their hearts and generates in themgreat bliss. Visualize the air they exhale in theform of thick black smoke, the essence of whichis all their negativity, confusion and heavy suffering. This dark, polluted energy entersyour left nostril and goes down into your heart.Dont leave it outside of you; bring it rightdown into your heart so that your ego and attachment completely freak out.
The nature of attachment is such that whenproblems arise, it blindly pushes them away. Thispractice trains your mind to handle negativity,feel compassion for the others and take their suffering and problems onto yourself, which in
turn helps you overcome self-cherishing andcherish others more than yourself.
Do the above cycle of breathing white lightout through your right nostril and black smokein through your left three times. Then breatheout through your left nostril and in through yourright three times. Then breathe out and inthrough both nostrils together three times. Atthe end of each nine rounds concentrate for aslong as you can that you and all other sentientbeings have been completely purified of all suffering, negativity and dualistic mind and arefully enlightened, experiencing everlasting blissthat pervades your entire body and mind. Whenyou lose focus on this, repeat the nine roundsonce more. Repeat this cycle again and again forthe duration of the session.
Dont think that this is just a fantasy andthat doing this meditation makes no differenceto the suffering of yourself and others. Actually,it is a profound practice and each time you doit, it brings you and all other sentient beingscloser to enlightenment. The greatest obstacleto enlightenment is self-cherishing, and takingon all the suffering, karma and delusions of allsentient beings and giving them all your happiness and merit is best way of overcomingit. The most effective way of training yourmind to overcome self-cherishing is to practicetong-len meditation.
Published in Ego, Attachment and Liberation, a free
publication from the Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive. The
book features a collection of Lama Yeshes teaching
from a five-day meditation course near Melbourne,
Australia in 1975.
Whenever any difficulty or problem arises, instead of getting depressed, be brave. Think, Fantastic. If this problem had not arisenI might have felt I had no problems. This problem is my teacher; all problems are my teacher ....
February 2011 MANDALA EZINE 9
Essential Buddhist Prayers,An FPMT Prayer Book, Vol 2:Comprehensive collection ofpractices advised byLama Zopa Rinpoche to beperformed on the 8th, 15th,29th and 30th of the Tibetan month. (340 pgs)
Heart Advice forDeath and Dying;Profound and accessiblewritten teachings on deathand dying by Lama ZopaRinpoche & 11 hours ofexquisite audio teachings andmeditations by Ven. SangyeKhadro on MP3 CD
Buddhism in a Nutshell;Overview of the completepath to enlightenment. Writtenteachings by Lama Yeshe,Lama Zopa Rinpoche and VenAmy Miller & 11 hours of audioteachings and meditations byVen. Amy Miller on MP3 CD
Essential Buddhist Prayers, An FPMT Prayer Book, Vol 3:Short daily practices of the primaryGelug Tantric deities: Guhyasamaja, Gyalwa Gyatso, Chakrasamvara, Vajrayogini, Yamantaka and more. Requires Empowerment.(340 pgs)
Essential Buddhist Prayers, An FPMT Prayer Book, Vol 1:All ones daily prayers andpractices, from blessing the speech in the morning todedicating the merits in the evening. (292 pgs)
FPMT Education ServicesProviding Programs and Pract ice Materials For All
Available from the Foundation Store: www.fpmt.org/shop
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FPMT Retreat Prayer Book;All of the daily practicesadvised by Lama ZopaRinpoche when in personal retreat. This text will also be used at group retreats with Lama Zopa Rinpoche. (360 pgs)
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Photo by Ven. Thubten Kunsang
February 2011 MANDALA EZINE 11
Advice from THE VIRTUOUS FRIEND
Fighting for FreedomBy Lama Zopa Rinpoche
Every single thing in daily life that getsdone that is what the guru advisedleads to unbelievable purification...