Tibetan Buddhism     213 posts


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' The Path '

ADVICE ON CONDUCT

Examine your behavior. If you've behaved badly, shame yourself, thinking, "You are still wandering in samsara because of past behavior like this. Now, still not aware, you are straying further into samsara and lower rebirths." When other people harm you, don't feel it's solely their fault, but that it is also the result of your own bad actions. Don't try to hide even the smallest faults in behavior from others. You can avoid feeling proud when praised by emphasizing the other person's good qualities.

~ Sakya Pandita Rinpoche

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DON'T RETALIATE!

It is said: " Don't retaliate with anger when attacked with rage. Don't retaliate with abuse when reviled. Don't retaliate with criticism when blamed in public. Don't retaliate with blows when threatened with physical violence. " Be patient even if someone actually hits you... Otherwise, if each attack has to be met with revenge, if each hurtful word must be matched with another spiteful word, the cycle never ends. one might think, "I am right !" and say something in return, but the other person will think, " You are wrong!" and counter with more abuse, and so on.

~ Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche

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HOW TO RELATE TO PRAISE AND BLAME

All the words and attitudes of samsaric life, whether pleasant or unpleasant, kind or critical, are just the echoes of emptiness.... When we are complimented, we should leave aside the temptation to feel proud an simply regard the praise as if it were a dream or a fantasy....As for criticism, it should be accepted and mixed with our Dharma practice in order to expose our hidden faults. As it is said: " Negativity and ill-treatment are the roots of the meditation flower. They are the Guru who destroys attachment and craving. Harsh words and blame spur us on toward discipline. How can we ever repay such kindness?

~ Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche

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HOW TO RESPOND TO ATTACKS AND INSULTS

When someone attacks you, do not fight back in any way whatsoever. Stay as quiet as a stone; this will allow you to triumph over squabbles. What does it truly matter what other people say? The way of worldly people is to give tit for that, to respond in kindly someone attacks you, so you fight back. That is how disputes begin. The best way, really is to keep your mouth shut as tightly as a squeezed ball of 'tsampa'.

~ Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche

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THE WELLSPRING OF ALL STRIFE

There is an eastern Tibetan saying: " Words are the wellspring of all strife." This is the main reason for staying in silent retreat. The voice is the instigator of quarrels. No one can know what you think inside, only Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. But the tongue, being as nasty as it is, does not want to stay silent, and so being all kinds of quarrels.

~ Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche

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THE SUPREME INSTRUCTIONS

As the great Kadampa teachers said: " The supreme instructions are the ones that reveal our hidden defects."

~ Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche

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' Conduct '

ALWAYS SCRUTINIZE YOUR OWN SHORTCOMINGS

Always scrutinize your own shortcomings. Ignore the faults of other people. Keep this attitude: "Whether they are pure or impure, it is none of my business!" Be your own teacher; keep a strict check on yourself. That is sufficient !

~ Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche

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THE GOAL IS NOT TO DESTROY EGO

Many people make the mistake of thinking that since ego is the root of suffering, the goal of spirituality must be to conquer and destroy ego. They struggle to eliminate ego's heavy hand, but... that struggle is merely another expression of ego. We go around and around, trying to improve ourselves through struggle, until we realize that the ambition to improve ourselves is itself the problem. Insight comes only when there are gaps in our struggle, only when we stop trying to rid ourselves of thought, when we cease siding with pious, good thoughts against bad, impure thoughts, only when we allow ourselves simply to see the nature of thought.

~ Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche

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THE NONTHEISTIC APPROACH OF BUDDHISM

Our regular, mundane understanding of religion is somewhat simple: it's a belief, a dogma that we have about superhuman being or supernatural energy outside our being that has power and control over our universe and over sentient beings. This mundane understanding of religion is a theistic view. In the usual meaning of religion, that particular external being or external energy is holding our computer keyboard and doing the programming for us. We don't have any power, we don't have any energy, and we don't have any choice. We have to work with that situation; we have to wait and see what comes up on the screen.
In Buddhism, to the contrary, we are holding the keyboard; we ourselves are the programmers. We program our software, and we press the command keys on our keyboard. Depending on our own skill, our own energy, and our own knowledge, we get what we want on the screen. The reason the Buddha taught the Dharma was to teach us the command keys.

~ The Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche

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CHANGE FROM THE INSIDE

Everybody is confronted with so much pressure to try to change from the outside. The Dharma never suggests we change from the outside; it's always taught that we should try to change from the inside. People try to change outer circumstances, and when for whatever reasons, they find they can't, they just give up. They give up instead of being more intelligent and curious about learning how to practice Dharma from the inside and making changes inwardly. If we learn how to genuinely practice in this way, no one can stop us from going forward on the path. Your wife or husband or anybody who is against your doing so will never be able to stop you. This is because no one can stop us from changing or doing something inwardly. Even the King of Maras, Dud Garab Wangchuk, will not be able to stop us. The only one who could actually stop us is ourselves.

~ Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche

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DIFFICULTY AT THE BEGINNING

There is a saying that goes: " In spiritual practice, difficulty comes at the beginning, in worldly affairs, it comes at the end." This means that whe renouncing ordinary activities and devoting yourself entirely to the practice, you may encounter some outer and inner obstacles, but the more you persevere, the happier you will become. Conversely, worldly activities bring some ephemeral and superficial satisfaction at first, but eventually they result in bitter disappointment.

~ Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche

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GETTING OUR PRIORITIES RIGHT

When the Dharma brings you hardships, then however many different kinds of suffering you might have to undergo, like Jetsun Mila and the Conquerors of the past, in the end your happiness will be unparalleled. But when wrongdoing makes you rich, then whatever pleasure you might temporarily obtain, in the end your suffering will be infinite.

~ Patrul Rinpoche

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OBSTACLES ARISE WHEN ONE TRIES TO PRACTICE THE DHARMA

Often it happens that one meets obstacles when practicing the Dharma - one falls sick, other circumstances don't really work out, the aims one pursues are unsuccessful. Something always seems to go wrong, one experiences unhappiness, and so forth...It is certainly true that practitioners have more obstacles than normal people, but one shouldn't think that because of this, negative actions are more profitable than Dharma practice.

~ Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche

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CUTTING THROUGH

The spiritual path is the process of cutting through our confusion, of uncovering the awakened state of mind...It is not a matter of building up the awakened state of mind but rather of burning out confusions that obstruct it. In the process of burning out these confusions, we discover enlightenment.

~ Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche

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EXERTION: WAITING COULD BE HARD WORK

Hardworkingness or exertion does not necessarily mean doing a lot of things. Waiting in itself could be very hard work, being is very hard work, and there are so many temptations not to do it.

~ Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche

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UNDERGO THE TRAINING

Ultimately, it is definitely true that there is nothing to do, but this is true only after one has passed through to the other side of understanding, experience, and realization. To maintain an intellectual conviction of the view without having undergone the training is asevere misunderstanding. This is how the self-professed "dzogchen practitioner" goes astray.

~ Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche

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' Foundation '

THE SPIRITUAL PATH IS NOT EASY

The problem is that we tend to seek... easy and painless answers. But this kind of solution does not apply to the spiritual path...Once we commit ourselves to the spiritual path, it is very painful and we are in for it. We have committed ourselves to the pain of exposing ourselves, of taking off our clothes, our skin, nerves, heart, brains, until we are exposed to the universe. Nothing will be left. It will be terrible, excruciating, but that is the way it is.

~ Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche

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PLEASE BE DILIGENT !

Please be diligent in practice. Really, the difference between Buddhas and ordinary beings is diligence.

~ Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche

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FOLLOWING THE PAT IS THE LOGICAL THING TO DO

If we reflect deeply, each action has a reaction, and everything we say and think has an effect on our-self and on others. Thus we have the potential of creating useful actions and of not creating useless ones. If all these potentials exist within a human being, what would be the logical thing to do ? Continue as we are doing, or try the best we can to genuinely develop, the qualities that do not unnecessarily bring harm or hurt to other sentient beings ?

~ Ven. Khandro Rinpoche

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DISAPPOINTMENT

We must surrender our hopes and expectations, as well as our fears, and march directly into disappointment, work with disappointment, go into it and make it our way of life.
...If we can open, then we suddenly begin to see that our expectations are irrelevant compared with the reality of the situations we are facing. This automatically brings disappointment. Disappointment is the best chariot to use on the path of the Dharma. It does not confirm the existence of our ego an its dreams.

~ Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche

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HOW IMPORTANT ARE OUR LIFE SITUATIONS, OUR CONTEXTS?

All the particular contexts are not so important. We make the contexts a big deal, but the essence is about happiness, about peace, about freedom from suffering, freedom from pain. In this way if we learn how to actually rely much more on the Three Jewels - starting with taking refuge to be free of ordinary suffering and pain - we could slowly strengthen our refuge so that in the end we are taking refuge to be free from the suffering of samsara and the cycle of existence totally. In this way all the contexts - all the outer shells of what we are trying to accomplish - in essence are not so important, unless you want to be a fool and hold on to the shell and not to the essence. Of course, we do that all the time; its not very surprising.
In the end the outer shell will never last. The inner essence, if it is about our own freedom and happiness and peace, is about our own mind - and if that could be cultivated regardless of the outer shell and outer contexts, what's the point of holding on to the outer contexts and shell? And if you gain this sense of inner abundance, it is limitless; there is no need to try to increase all your outer contexts and outer shells. You simply have abundance, which you feel from the inside, and you couldn't wish for more contentment than what you have already found in your life.

~ Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche

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GOOD CIRCUMSTANCES, THEIR ATTACHMENTS, AND HOW TO DEAL WITH THEM

It is said that good circumstances are more difficult to deal with than bad ones, because they are more distracting. If you have whatever you could wish for - wealth, a comfortable house, clothing - you should view it all as illusory, like possessions obtained in a dream, rather than feeling compulsive attachment to it. If someone gets angry with you or threatens you, it is relatively easy to meditate on patience, or if you fall sick to cope with the sickness. Since such things are causes of suffering, and suffering naturally reminds us of the Dharma, in a way its easier to integrate these difficult circumstances into our path. But when things are going well and you feel happy, your mind accepts that situation without any difficulty. Like oil spread all over your skin, attachment easily stays invisible, blended into the mind; it becomes part of your thoughts. Once such attachment to favorable circumstances is present, you become almost infatuated with your attachments, your fame, and your wealth. That is something very difficult to get rid of.

~ Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche

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FAME

Practitioners regard fame as evil. A practitioner who dreams that he is famous should regard hat as an obstacle of Mara.
Think about it! Fame is just like the name tagged to a corpse. After one dies, one's reputation will not be of any help to the mind that travels on. The messengers of the Lord of Death in the bardo state will not respect someone just because he is famous.

~ Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche

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HOPELESSNESS AND DESPAIR

Hopelessness is not quite the same thing as despairing. There is a difference. Despair is laziness, lack of intellect. One is not even willing to look for the reason for the despair. It is a total flop. But hopelessness is very intelligent. You keep looking. You flip page after page, saying, " That's hopeless, that's hopeless." You are still very vigorous, hopelessly vigorous. You're still looking for hope, but each time you have to say, " Oh, no. Yuck! " Hopelessness keeps going; it is very vigorous, very inspiring.
Hopelessness doesn't mean that you are miserable particularly. There's lots of room for energy, more energy and more joy. But 'joy' is probably the wrong word - a sense of wholesomeness, healthiness, a sense of well-being because of hopelessness.

~ Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche

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MAKE THE MOST OF THIS LIFE

If we do not know how to turn our own suffering into favorable circumstances for our own awakening, if we cannot cultivate the depth of our own intelligence, if we cannot change our condition of being an ignorant person to an awakened one, who can do it for us? If this is not done in this life, never in millions of aeons will it be different. Especially if you cast away your precious human life in just doing unimportant business that doesn't concern your long-term well-being. Just getting a roof over your head, just feeding your children, just having some means to live - all human beings require those. Even animals require those things. But beyond that, if you hold on to some very self-important image of yourself as a lawyer or doctor or businessman or whatever - in the end it wont be me who is speaking to you; it will be you yourself feeling a tremendous loss of this precious human life. You cannot immediately change so drastically and become Milarepa. But you could change day to day, minute to minute in the time you have.

~ Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche

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REVULSION AND RENUNCIATION

In Buddhist training, revulsion and renunciation are called the two feet of meditation practice. revulsion is losing our appetite for samsaric existence and realizing that samsaric pursuits are futile and pointless and do not yield any permanent pleasure and happiness whatsoever. Renunciation means to understand that time is running out and everything passes.
Revulsion is the feeling people suffering from jaundice or liver disease experience when served fried food; either they are very nauseated or they vomit. In the same way, when we realize that all the achievements of the six realms of samsara are futile, insubstantial, and meaningless, we lose our appetite for them.
Renunciation, wanting to be free from samsara, is to realize that all conditioned samsaric states are painful and everything is impermanent. We need to acknowledge sincerely and honestly that our life is a fleeting, fragile existence.

~ Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche

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