Auspiciousness

According to tradition, before we start anything, we invoke the higher beings remembering their graciousness and qualities. Doing this brings auspiciousness, benefitting oneself as well as others, whether one is undertaking mundane or spiritual activities. It helps in preventing the influence of anger, pride and arrogance, caused by ignorant clinging, during the activity one is involved in.

~~ Gyalwang Drukpa

Likewise, I would like to wish all of you a Happy New Year 2017. May all the blessings of the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, who are inconceivable in their wisdom, compassion and power, be with all sentient beings forever. May you go from light to light. May your mind always be saturated with the precious Bodhichitta, cause of all joy, well-being and liberation.

You can recite the 8 Auspicious Ones Prayer thrice in the morning of the new year (link is below):

http://www.lotsawahouse.org/tibetan-masters/mipham/verses-eight-noble-auspicious-ones

Receiving recognition for offerings

According to scriptures, if an ordinary person receives and accepts respect from a high spiritual person, much of his merit is thereby consumed.  However great the offerings made to Longchen Rabjam (a great realized master in the Nyingma lineage), he said dedication prayers but never expressed gratitude, and he said, “Patrons should have the opportunity to make merits.” So the patrons would receive merits instead of expressions of gratitude for their offerings.

Dissolving Self-Cherishing

Whenever you engage in a practice, as mentioned here, for example the recitation of Manis, but actually in any activity, you should do it with the power of benevolence. This is a key point because there are those who make a mistake here: when they do a practice, their main thought is that if they do the recitation of Manis, they believe it will help them, and thereby help them develop some degree of personal attainment. It is inwardly directed, but again, it is only self-cherishing. Dharma practice, if done in this way can even reinforce self-cherishing, therefore you must avoid practicing in this way. Approach any activity with the thought that you are not just doing it for yourself, but rather, you do it explicitly for others. Your mind opens up completely, and you say mantras for all living beings, which automatically includes yourself. This is the benevolent attitude, the power of benevolence. The power of benevolence must inform all your deeds. It must be done with consistency, and constancy.

– Garchen Rinpoche

Going forward with Mani Monlam

Dear Dharma friends,

As of today, we have accumulated a total of  26,737,899  Mani mantras.

Although this is still far from our hopeful target of 100 million Mani mantras, it is still a great accomplishment for all those who have been trying their best to contribute and accumulate.  On behalf of everyone, I would like to thank you for your efforts and good energies for the benefit of all beings and to urge you to continue accumulating the mantra. I think it is very important to acknowledge how far a small group of us have come for these past 8 months and the kind of immense merit that has been generated from our commitment to make a bit of positive difference in this world for ourselves and others.

As we can see, many unfortunate incidents continue to unfold in this world, and from a larger perspective, its cause can be attributed to the thoughts of anger, jealousy and pride generated in the minds of beings. All actions that bring harm begin with a negative thought.  Furthermore, we can see many actions that seem to be done for the benefit of others but which are inwardly motivated by the coarse afflictions of anger, competitiveness and so forth. According to the teachings, if the motivation is negative, then even a seemingly positive act will yield negative karmic repercussions.

If we examine our own minds honestly, it is clear that we badly need to purify our own minds with love and kindness.  We cannot simply hope and wish for less problems in this world when we do nothing to change our own minds, letting it run out of control under its passions and emotions.  If we understand the Dharma teachings correctly, all causes start from within our minds, so it is very important to address this before trying to make external changes.

At the same time, one of the best thing to do is to recite Mani mantras that bring more love and kindness into the minds of all beings.  According to the Buddha, the sole cause of suffering is self-grasping and the afflictive emotions that arise from it such as anger and jealousy. The only cause of happiness is love for other beings.  All merits and positive conditions come to us in our present circumstances as a result of past positive deeds done for others with a mind of love.

Therefore, we need to first develop the causes of happiness further in our own minds if we are to bring benefit to others.  Then, with the wish to bring benefit to others, we invoke the blessings of all the Buddhas by reciting the Mani mantra. This is an infallible skillful method given to us by the enlightened beings to help ourselves and others. Instead of worrying too much about the state of the world or your life, work on your own mind, develop love and kindness and recite the Mani.  Then you can be sure that the causes of happiness are waiting in the future.

I personally have full conviction that reciting the Mani mantra will bring indelible and immeasurable benefits to all beings both in the short term and in the long term. I hope the same conviction accompanies you always. The perspective that Buddhists hold should be very vast and far-reaching. We are not only wishing only for some temporary improvement to occur on a small scale which may not even make much a difference say 50 or 100 years from now.  Instead, we are aiming for the complete liberation for all beings which is a goal which is so huge and all-encompassing that it is beyond our ordinary conception. Therefore, one with such a wide viewpoint is not easily shaken, discouraged or depressed by temporary adverse situations or obstacles.

Finally, please join me in rejoicing and making a dedication prayer for this vast merit of accumulating so many mantras:

By all the merits accumulated in this Mani accumulation, as well as all the merits accumulated by others, may all beings attain happiness and be free from sufferings in this life and ultimately reach Buddhahood swiftly.  May the Buddha-dharma flourish and the lives of the Dharma lineage holders and authentic teachers be long. May their activities be free from all obstacles and benefit many beings. Upon passing away from their present life, may all beings be reborn in the purelands of the Buddhas immediately without suffering and obstacles at death.

For more information on the practice to generate love and kindness, please read :
https://bodhiactivity.wordpress.com/2016/03/10/bodhicitta-teachings-by-lord-jigten-sumgon/

Healing the world with our positive minds

Dear Dharma friends,

On the first day of the Holy 4th Tibetan month (Saka Dawa), I am glad to inform you that our group count of Mani mantras at present is : 22,859,602 and counting…

I am glad that all of you have participated in this great accumulation for the benefit of this world and all sentient beings wherever they pervade. There is so much sufferings in this world that every effort of yours to send positive thoughts and intentions, love and kindness, mantra and blessings is very very useful. I think that is the real point of our practice. Even if the effects are not easily perceived, cause-and-effect never fails and I believe that our cumulative effort will make a ripple to help heal the world.

This year, Saka Dawa lasts from 7 May to 4 July (double fourth month in Tibetan calendar this year) and this is a time when positive and negative effects of karma are magnified. We should cultivate more positive intentions, release negative emotions and uplift ourselves and others with peace and kindness. It is a good time to practice more Dharma, to be more mindful of your conduct and to make good aspirations and prayers for others.

With much thanks to all of you,

Bodhiactivity

Heart Essence Prayer to Guru Rinpoche

Heart-Essence Prayer to Guru Rinpoche

Nying Zug Ma
A terma of Matrul Rinpoche

EMAHO  /  CHI NOD DAG PA GYAL WAY KYIL KHOR ZHING
External vessel of the pure realm of the Victorious Ones’ mandala

NYING WU’ ZANG DOG PAL GYI RI WO NAY
At its heart, within the Glorious Copper Colored Mountain

RIG PA GU RU PADMA JUNG NAY ZHUG
Resides the Guru of enlightened awareness, Padmasambhava

YE NAY DU DRAL MED PAR SOL WA DEB
Primordially there is no meeting and parting, I pray to you

RIG TONG ZANG THAL NGANG NAY JIN GYI LOB
Within unobstructed emptiness-awareness, please confer blessings

YER MED GONG LONG CHU WO CHIG TU DREY
Inseparable from ultimate wisdom, merged into one stream

THAR THUG NGA YAB PAL RI’I ZHING KHAM SU
In the ultimate realm of Chamara Auspicious Mountain

RIG DZIN DRUB THOB GYAL SEY DRANG MED KYI
Vidyadharas, accomplished beings and countless Bodhisattvas

DRAL DU KYE NAY TSHOM WU CHIG TU TSOG
Be born amongst this assembly and gather together as one

RIG DU PAD MAY KYIL KHOR ZHAL JAL NAY
Seeing the mandala of the embodiment of primordial wisdom, Padmasambhava

SUNG GI DUD TSI’I GA TON CHUD LA ROL
Celebrating the amrita of his speech and enjoying its essence

THEG CHOG YE SHE SA LA CHIN PAR SHOG
May we arrive at the state of the supreme vehicle of wisdom

This text arose naturally when the abbot of Siu-Gang monastery (one of the four great monasteries in the Nyingma Pai-yul lineage in Xi-kang) Shri-gang Matrul Rinpoche (Chokyi Nyima) saw the face of Padmasambhava in a Dzogchen state of primordial wisdom.  Rinpoche stated that if any devoted disciple of the Triple Gems who has pure faith frequently prays with this text together with the recitation of 1 million Guru Rinpoche mantra (OM AH HUNG BENZA GURU PADMA SIDDHI HUNG), he/she will received sublime blessings and increase his/her accumulations of merit and wisdom, ultimately attaining to the level of the original protector Samantabhadra.

This sublime practice was revealed by the Great Terton Chokyi Nyima (Matrul Rinpoche) in a profound pure state.  This is an extremely concise and potent practice from amongst Rinpoche’s termas on Padmasambhava which has the power to liberate on hearing.  Matrul Rinpoche has said personally that any sentient being who listens to this prayer, no matter whom, as long as he hears this prayer,  his worldly fortune and merits will increase, he will receive inconceivable blessings, in the future he will definitely be reborn in Sukhavati (Amitabha’s pureland) or Guru Rinpoche’s pureland.  This Guru Rinpoche prayer which liberates by hearing is extremely important and has very vast meaning.  Therefore Rinpoche hopes that this prayer would be transmitted to the whole world so that everyone can receive the blessings of Guru Rinpoche and be liberated by hearing.

Matrul Rinpoche and his Dharma Heir Rigar Rinpoche has compassionately given permission that anyone who has seen this Heart-Essence Prayer to Guru Rinpoche can recite it according to its Tibetan transliteration even without having received empowerment or oral transmission.  Later, when it is possible, it would be perfect and auspicious if they can receive empowerment or oral transmission from a teacher.

(Listen to the prayer here :
http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XMjAwMDE0MDk2.html)

More about Matrul Rinpoche :

The precious Matrul Rinpoche Shri-gang Matrul Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche who lived to the age of 82 was widely recognized in Tibet as a genuine emanation of Guru Rinpoche.  He was also the rebirth of one of Guru Rinpoche’s 25 disciples, Nubchen Sangye Yeshe.  He was also the emanation of Black Zambhala (a wealth deity).  His life was full of miraculous occurrences and he has been regarded as the son of the Machen Mountain God.  Rinpoche is one of the older generation of teachers who transmit Guru Rinpoche’s teachings.  We regard him as Padmasambhava in person who confers liberation on sight.

Matrul Rinpoche was the vajra brother of His Holiness Penor Rinpoche and he both gave and received empowerments from His Holiness Jigme Phuntsok Rinpoche.  He was highly praised by His Holiness Jigme Phuntsok  as someone who “did not need to be examined any further, he is a true Vajra Master,” and “he is truly Nubchen Sangye Yeshe’s true emanation.”  His Holiness Jigme Phuntsok once said in front of the Chinese disciples, “Just like Achuk Lama of Yachen, Matrul Rinpoche of Shri-gang is the same, these are the true great Tulkus.”  When Matrul Rinpoche was invited to Larung to attend the Amitabha Prayer Festival, His Holiness Jigme Phuntsok personally came down from his throne to offer a ceremonial scarf and invited Matrul Rinpoche to share his throne.  His Holiness supplicated Matrul Rinpoche to give the Colleges’ students empowerments and to confer the Nyingthig Yabshi.  Tenzin Gyatso Tulku of the Sertar Buddhist College who was also a disciple of His Holiness Jigme Phuntsok praised Matrul Rinpoche as being no different from His Holiness Jigme Phuntsok in terms of enlightened qualities. 

When Matrul Rinpoche visited Yachen Monastery, Achuk Lama Rinpoche similarly came outside the door to received him, and frequently proclaimed Matrul Rinpoche’s wondrous qualities to the gatherings of monks and nuns.   In addition, at the behest of Achuk Lama Rinpoche, Matrul Rinpoche performed practices to remove obstacles to Yachen Monastery several times.  The parinirvana ceremonies of the great accomplished master Khenpo Chokyab was similarly presided over by Matrul Rinpoche.  In Tibet, especially within the Nyingma tradition, Matrul Rinpoche is highly esteemed and he was approached by many teachers from other schools for teachings.

Events from Matrul Rinpoche’s life has spread throughout Tibet, as a great treasure-revealer, he has revealed so many termas that it fills an entire room.  Sometimes Rinpoche would just sweep his hands in the air in front of him and his entire body and dharma robes would be filled with all kinds of termas.  When Rinpoche was in Machen Mountain to retrieve terma, under the public view, his arm suddenly extended and he reached deep into the mountain and retrieved a Buddha statue.  Even when Rinpoche was imprisoned, he retrieved many yellow terma parchments in his cell and benefitted his fellow-prisoners.  In this way, he aroused faith in the minds of his jailers who released all the prisoners.

Once, when he was presiding over a large scale puja in Qinghai where many tens-of-thousands of devotees attended, due to the interference of non-Buddhist forces, the lightning flashed and there was tumultuous weather with rain and wind, causing much difficulties for the proceedings in the puja.  At that point, Matrul Rinpoche displayed a wrathful appearance and threatened in a strident voice to bury the negative forces beneath the ground, then he brandished his Vajra implement and flung it into the space.  A bluish cloud in the shape of a dragon descended and dissolved into the river and the obstacle was thus averted.  After the completion of the puja, Rinpoche released the obstacle-maker.  Events like this miraculous display, had it not been witnessed personally, are difficult for others to comprehend or accept.  But this was witnessed by many devotees.

Rinpoche has given instructions for his disciple Rizeng Rigar Tulku to spread his terma on the Heart-essence Prayer to Guru Rinpoche to China and the rest of the world.  On 24 November 2004, Rinpoche dissolved his rupakaya into the Dharmadhatu.