Teaching by Namdrol Rinpoche – 20 April 2017

Dharma Teaching by Singha Thekchen Namdrol Rinpoche
A summary by Anne-Marie Wagonis

Today Rinpoche spoke about the topic of the realistic deepening of our own dharma cultivation.

“I use the term dharma cultivation as opposed to dharma practice because we ourselves are not perfect and therefore our practice cannot be considered perfect either. In using the term cultivation it means that we have to become more aware of the conditions, both internal and external. In a way, we are pruning. Our mind is not permanently stable. Everybody’s mind is this way. Some days are good, some days are not. There are ups and there are downs. And we can be easily influenced by others. If we don’t have grounded thoughts about a particular topic or situation we can become very easily swayed to believe whatever it is that we hear the most over and over again. This is a natural human condition of the mind and it is why Buddha taught us how to bring our mind to its Buddha-nature state ….to the mind of emptiness. But even your own mind is not real.”

“We are so stuck in our own identities which are based upon our beliefs that we are human, we are a particular race, we are our particular job, etc. We believe in these identities because we have accepted them to be who we really are. We must learn to drop all of the labels. Be willing to cut, cut, cut away all of these perceptions and peel them back away. After you peel it all away you have a pure state of emptiness.”

“Legally, our minds belong to us but in reality when we always feel the need to seek approval, we are letting other people own them. Do you dare to stand up and to make your own decisions? If you cannot make your own decisions in life because you are always seeking the approval of others, you will always only be half of who you are. We must cultivate ourselves in order to complete ourselves. And in our cultivation, we must also cultivate enough to give some away. As training bodhisattvas, we must learn how to give away happiness and how to stop blaming other people for what we don’t have. We must come together and compromise because this is really the beginning of our own healing and our grounding. Be strong, healthy and independent. You don’t need other people to complete you. Rather, you must learn to complete yourself and then share your completeness with other people.”

“Begin by accepting that we are not perfect, that we each have our strengths and weaknesses; accept that we have made mistakes in the past and accept other people’s apologies. Do not run away from these things because if you do, you will face the same problems everywhere else you go.”

“Who are those who suffer the most? Those who believe that who and what you are is real. Those who believe that you are powerful and have special status. Those who believe that you are always going to be healthy and beautiful. Those who believe that you are totally independent and don’t need anyone’s help. And, lastly those who believe in all of your own stories.”

“The cultivation of dharma allows our minds to become more stable and reflective, so put the effort into meditation to stabilize your mind. If you really practice correctly you will face many things that you may not want to deal with but you will have a choice. You can either walk away, shut the door and pretend that it is not there or you can light another torch; switch on some more lights so that you can really see and begin to cut through it, rearrange it and throw some things out. Categorize your mind so that the mind knows how, what, where, when and why. The most important of these is the “why”. If you cannot answer your own “whys” and you continue to rely upon other people’s answers, it means that you have not yet matured. Your own “why” is something only you can answer for yourself. Through this process we protect our minds with meditation, the recitation of mantras and reflection. We also surround ourselves with the right people; with those who possess the right attitudes. Always be aware of who you allow into your own inner circle.”

“Remember that your best soulmate is always your Guru. If you remain close to Guru in mind, body and action, that is your best practice.”

“Enjoy your life, knowing that it really does not last long. Come and experience the teachings “live” because this connection is a very important one. Experience is experience by those who have experienced the same thing. Then, there is a common language shared. Treasure it and expend it. Release your boundaries.”

“Personally, I don’t see myself as a dharma teacher. I see myself as my Guru’s disciple. I am sharing what I can, supporting what I can and helping where I can. If people accept and appreciate this, then I am grateful. If not, I don’t try to force things. If it’s a real karmic condition, then it will all work out.”

“The purpose of your practice is to burst your own balloon! Let the inside and the outside come together in union; let it all be the same in oneness.”

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