In life, there is living and dying, changes in feelings, fluctuations in wealth, differences in power, as well as highs and lows in status. The nature of objects is impermanence in a state of constant change. That is why we should enhance our spirituality and develop compassion and wisdom towards life. Only by doing this can we be leaded to the path of liberation, and gain the ultimate happiness.
Giving is the first of the important practices of The Six Paramitas. In our daily lives, we should learn to eliminate the ego by giving. Fearless giving helps us develop compassion, and makes us feel richer.
With what state of mind should we practice giving? Giving should be done with a loving heart. It is important to develop joy and happiness, and therefore I encourage to give within our abilities.
Giving is not a competition. It is an action of the heart, and there are many ways to give. Giving true meaning and happiness, will return true merit.
Remember that the action of giving also will benefit the giver in great ways. The giver will be more compassionate and wiser, relieve sentient beings from suffering, and develop towards a supreme Bodhisattva.
No matter how much we give, if only a candle, will give big returns and incredible benefits.
- Sangpo Rinpoche
All suffering is caused by ignorance; people inflict pain on others in the selfish pursuit of their happiness or satisfaction.
Yet true happiness comes from a sense of peace and contentment, which in turn must be achieved through the cultivation of altruism, love and compassion, and the elimination of selfishness and greed.
The root of all our suffering in samsara is ignorance. Ignorance, until we free ourselves from it, can seem endless, and even when we have embarked on the spiritual path our search is fogged by it.
However, if you remember this, and keep the teachings in your heart, you will gradually develop the discernment to recognize the innumerable confusions of ignorance for what they are, and so never jeopardize your commitment or lose your perspective.
-Sangpo Rinpoche (reposted quote from Sanam Yalmo)
When we encounter a setback, embarrassment, or receive contempt or verbal abuse, how should we handle it?
Firstly, we should not let our ordinary mind react for us. Instead, we should calm down, thinking with our heart: "If I were a teacher, or if I was a Bodhisattva, how would I act to deal with it?" By having such second thoughts, we are sure to reduce negative psychological setbacks by half!
Think that even the Buddha did received such insults, even evil and vicious, and that the Buddha heart were able to calm down impatience.
If we allow ourselves to react with an ordinary mind, it may be like volcanic eruptions of retaliation or counterattack to vent an angry heart.
Real courage is the courage to not kill, the courage of shame, the courage of retreat, the courage of forgiveness, and the courage of compassion.
When we experience negative emotions, it is easy to feel that everybody are against us. Somebody else´s words might sound more important, and we may feel that we do everything wrong. We may become rebellious and impatient, or want to escape the situation, our emotions controlling our actions.
Instead, being willing to learn from the situation, we turn negativity into mindfulness. Doing this practice, we inspire wisdom and achieve real happiness.
The path of the Buddha is to mould one´s intentions, speech and actions into that of the Buddha.
It means to let go of the intentions, speech and actions of the ordinary person, and instead generate the heartfelt motivation for speech and actions. In this way, all speech and actions are changed into the Buddha´s kind words and good deeds.
It is difficult to let go and change in this way because everybody has karma. There are worries and habits that are difficult to change.
The reason they are difficult to change is because of lack of blessing and wisdom. But with blessing and wisdom we can set aside these habits, develop the intention of Bodhichitta and let go of the old.
Aversion generates karma with heavy consequences. On the other hand, practicing patience generates the most merit.
When the heart is free from aversion, one is at peace with the world. Aversion in the heart makes life difficult. It also makes the people around us uneasy, robbing them of calmness. A heart filled with aversion will destroy our own happiness, as well as the happiness of others.
So, practice the wisdom of patience in order to destroy the aversion. A person who knows how to extinguish the fire of aversion in this life will experience happiness in the next.
In Tibetan Buddhism, on the spiritual path to enlightenment, one often practices a mantra recitation connected to a corresponding deity .
Daily mantra practice can benefit study, career, achievement and wealth. By practicing altruism, all can be successful in reaching their own enlightenment step by step, and reach the highest level.
I personally do Chenrezig meditation, reciting the famous "Om Mani Padme Hung" mantra. This mantra is the most important mantra for Tibetan Buddhists.
In simple terms, a straight forward interpretation of "Om Mani Padma Hung" is:
Om: Represents the practitioners body, speech and mind.
Mani: The treasure, with which you can relieve poverty. It is also a symbol of skilful means, altruistic budhicitta, compassion and love.
Padme: In Sanskrit, it means "Lotus". It is the unstained lotus of wisdom. Chenrezig, the deity representing the compassionate aspect of Buddha, is not only compassionate. He also has wisdom.
Hung: The compassion and wisdom are indivisible, and united in one pure equality.
Sometimes, a "Phat" is added to the mantra. The "Phat" is a seed syllable that strengthens the Bodhisattva intention of benefitting all sentient beings.
It is appropriate to recite this mantra with reverence and a focused mind towards the Buddha, as this will produce incredible merit. When the recitation is complete, give the merit back to all sentient beings, and wish them to be free from all suffering.
Practicing mantra can clear karma, and change the fate by turning things around, such that the negative becomes positive, danger becomes peace, and evil becomes auspicious. All the world will benefit by this practice of altruism.
We experience positive and negative thoughts in our minds. But these positive and negative thoughts do not affect the true nature of the mind, just like good or bad weather does not affect the truth of the sky.
The birth and death of a thought concerns only the thought. It does not concern the mind, the true nature of phenomena. Rain and sunny weather are just ingenious manifestation of various causes and conditions. They do not affect the sky itself.
Therefore, emotions should not be believed to be an absolute truth, and self-awareness is the only way to remove this erroneous view.
Sometimes we act out our bad habits on the persons closest to us. But acting out these bad habits creates anger and bad karma in the other person. So we loose their blessings, as well as hurting those we love, perhaps one day finding that it is to late.
So it is better to let compassion and wisdom resolve the bad habits, rather than acting them out on somebody else.
We should therefore cherish the people around us.