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Obstacles Preventing Positive Connections with Others
Review In our first session, we had a basic introduction to the topic. We saw that when we speak about refuge in Buddhism, we are not speaking about some passive act of turning to some higher power to protect us, but rather, we are taking certain measures to prevent our own...
Refuge: Putting a Safe Direction & Meaning in Our Lives
Steps of Dzogchen Meditation
Recognizing the Alaya for Habits In dzogchen meditation, we first access and recognize the alaya for habits, then effulgent rigpa, and then essence rigpa. How to recognize the alaya for habits? The alaya for habits gives rise to seeing and hearing, as well as to imagining and...
How to Meditate on Dzogchen
Integrating Our Life: Inspiration & Focus on Our Mothers
Finding Inspiration We have looked at the framework from which these teachings about integrating our life derive, and there are just a few more points I want to add before I open it up for questions. This is concerning the term “inspiration.” We have the Sanskrit word...
Exercises for Integrating the Aspects of Our Life
Mahamudra: Meditation on Mental Activity
Shamatha and Vipashyana All these points we have been discussing are relevant for understanding mahamudra meditation. Mahamudra meditation has two basic stages: the practices for attaining shamatha and the practices for attaining vipashyana. Shamatha is a serenely stilled...
Mahamudra and the Four Noble Truths
Developing Mirror-Like Buddha Wisdom
We have been discussing the five types of deep awareness in relationship with the five skandhas or aggregate factors that make up our experience and the five types of disturbing emotions. There are many other systems with which we can correlate this structure of the five types...
Meditations for Recognizing the Five Buddha Wisdoms
Exercises Focusing the Mental Factors on Ourselves and Others
Background We are continuing our discussion of how to adjust our mental factors within the context of developing balanced sensitivity. His Holiness the Dalai Lama speaks of the different aspects of Buddhism, and he differentiates Buddhist science from Buddhist religion and...
Working with Mental Factors in Daily Life
The Fifth Dalai Lama's Guidelines for Guru Yoga
A guru is a great teacher, a great spiritual master or mentor, someone who not only is able to teach from knowledge of the texts, but who is also able to teach us by his or her own example, being a living example of what Buddha has taught. So someone who has sincere love and...
Theory and Practice of Guru Yoga
A Proper Seat, Prostration and Sitting Posture
The third preparatory practice is to arrange a proper seat, sit in the eightfold posture, and in a positive frame of mind take safe direction, or refuge, and reaffirm our bodhichitta aim. Arranging a Proper Seat According to the text, it is best (if you can do it) to have...
The Six Preparatory Practices before Meditation
The Aggregate of Forms
The Aggregates Only Include Nonstatic Phenomena As mentioned, the five aggregates are a convenient scheme to help us organize and understand our experience. Each aggregate is a collection of various similar factors that make up each moment of our experience, and they include...
Meditations for Recognizing the Five Aggregates
Close Placement of Mindfulness on Body & True Suffering
The First Aspect of Close Placement of Mindfulness on the Body: The Body as Being Nonstatic, Impermanent We saw in the Mahayana tradition that with the general way of focusing on the body, what we distinguish about it is that it is unclean and impure. We take our body to mind...
Meditation on the 16 Aspects of the 4 Noble Truths