The Origin of Kālachakra Society
On October 17th 2011 under the multiple requests by the disciples in Shanghai, the respectful guru Zhuoge Yonten Gyatso Rinpoche presented in Shanghai. Along with the Guru’s arrival, the disciples in Shanghai held a formal welcome ceremony. The disciples lined up holding Hada in hand, offering seven gems, conch, script and figure of Buddha to our graceful guru, Zhuoge Rinpoche. Our graceful guru accepted joyfully, and blew conch with long standing sound. Hearing the sound, the disciples were delighted, wishing our guru a long life and teaching the wheel of Buddha dharma.
This is an amazing welcome ceremony. At the second day of Master’s arrival, a camellia in the garden of the site blossoms full of red flowers however without blossom for a long time, making us exclaim the auspicious sign.
The every moment of getting on with our master is rare and cherished. During the time in Shanghai, our compassionate Rinpoche led us to make offering to Buddhist relics, offering lamps, offering tsog food, group meditation and life relief. Rinpoche has guided the disciples to make a vow, after paying homage to Buddhist relic at Guanyin Temple:
May all merit of three lives, save sentient beings from infinite tribulations
May all vows made by the Buddhas for the past present and future, relieve beings from immense sufferings
The Shanghai disciples were moved to tears by the immense vows made by Rinpoche, as well as the predestination related between the master travelled far from Tibetan area and the disciples in Han. Feeling the eminent dharma Kālachakra vajra is, rare and valuable, we are making a vow that we will learn the Kālachakra vajra and inherit Kālachakra vajra, to benefit more destined beings in Han. Kālachakravajra focus on practical practicing. The learning and contemplating Dharma are necessary as well. If we pray to propagate the dharma, the best way is to learn the dharma systematically, creating the group to study dharma together so as to integrate learning, contemplating and practicing, so that the diligence of group study can exceed the obstacles for accomplishment. Therefore, along with the earnest pray by Shanghai disciples, pray Rinpoche to extend the Kalachakravajra Dharma in Han area and set up joint practice sites in different places.
To encourage the disciples to protect the right Dharma and to propagate Buddhist Dharma and to practice diligently, our Lama Rinpoche being the abbot of several temples takes valuable times to benefit many disciples via homage, teaching, propagation and empowerment.
In such a special day as October 26 that makes us excited, people enjoyed the relics from heaven during the Samantabhadra assembly. The crystal relics let us delighted and excited. Our rinpoche made teaching to us that there are relics everywhere when the mind is purified, while the relics are useless if the mind full of defilement. May we pray to Buddha in purified mind, request Dharma in purified mind and rely on sangha in purified mind, and step to the bright purified way. Our Lama Rinpoche warned us to avoid confusion by the apparent phenomenon but focus on interior spiritual practicing. Based on the supreme destination, the Shanghai disciples pray that Kalachakravajra will be promoted in the world and benefits countless sentient beings and ask for Rinpoche’s permission to establish Kalachakra learning Society site to benefit sentient beings. Rinpoche readily agreed and formally named it “Kālachakra Society” with his inscription.
The “Kālachakra Society” is now established with above origination. Under the kind rinpoche’s leading and disciples’ protection, the branches have setup all over the world gradually and move forward, taking the mission and aspiration of Kālachakravajra lineage inheritance and Junong method expansion.
Zhuoge Rinpoche’s teaching in Shanghai at Oct. 26th, 2011
Q: The majority are the lay practitioners in the municipal, while there are few monks. Being the lay practitioners who work in the day time with great pressure in the city and the limited time, how to deal with the worldly trivia and lokuttara to learn Buddhism?
A: We shall realize a saying in many scripts that Buddhism exists in the world. We may practice in such way that: we practice by means of zazen (meditation) or joint practices, at the time that we seems to be a car filled with gas. After we fill up we can use the “car” driving to work. Normally our mentality would be great. Every morning before we go out, we initiate a great compassion, i.e. whatever we do today is for the sake of all sentient beings. We do anything when keeping this in mind. Certainly it will be great with such mentality. In other words, the opportunity of learning lies in everywhere with an appropriate mentality. In Dharma ending period, we may have various places to practice. Quite often we may have more opportunity to practice in places other than temple, wildness or cage. Therefore it is appropriate that we shall grasp every opportunity to practice, with good mentality.
In other word, being a lay practitioner busy in working, we shall initiate a bodhichitta every morning. Then during the eight-hour a day, we maintain a peaceful mind or do what we shall do in a mentality of equality, i.e. at the time of working we shall do our job not affected by Buddhism activities. We face up with the job in a peaceful mind and spend some time to do our Buddhist homework in the evening to breathe some fresh air. Then at the bed time, we refresh what we have done in the day. We confess if doing anything wrong and dedicate the merit to the sentient beings if doing virtue. In such way we are doing practicing nicely. Furthermore, facing our family, our own child, our parents and our relatives, we keep a quiet mindset. We present to them big smiles and a nice environment of living. This is a good base of learning Buddhism.
Q: How to zazen in the process of practicing refuge?
A: General speaking, ones may practice refuge by means of zazen meditation. However, if we obtain an appropriate environment or condition, we shall certainly practice the 100,000 kowtows. It is the most important part. Normally the Zen Buddhism refers to dynamic meditation and static meditation. Kowtow may be called dynamic meditation that the body makes refuge. Along with the body kowtowing, the mouth is chanting the refuge mantra and the mind is praying Three Gem or confessing our karmic hindrance. This is absolutely a great mentality. If ones like sitting quietly, they can practice in the way of sitting meditation. When sitting still at the time of refuge, I think we shall visualize the merit of Three Gems so that we feel grateful to our master and the three gems. These are very important. Visualization in such mindset is a kind of meditation while doing the real meditation is a bit of early I think. Sometimes when feeling irritated, people may sit still. But this is not practicing refuge. As a matter of fact, sitting still that makes one’s mind purified without any trouble is account for the state of refuge. The refuge is called self refuge, that is own purification makes one to refuge to his/her own Alaya consciousness, which is a way of refuge as well.
Q: When we visualize the refuge tree, our protectors are staying in front of us. What image of protector shall we visualize? Appreciate Rinpoche’s instruction on how to deal with our sloth when meditation or chanting.
A: There are two types of protectors: one is the lokuttara protectors and the other is worldly protectors. The lokuttara protectors are referred to the object we refuge, which are included in the Refuge Tree. If we refer to worldly protectors, we require to work and to make offerings to him. It is not an actual offering or even a refuge, but an almsgiving. The one we give alms is a good friend we get along with, in such case that you donate much more to him and he conduct much more virtuous deeds for you. The other case lies in that someone made a vow in front of Padma Sambhava and many other eminent monks many years ago that we protect the ones practicing and acting as per Buddhism Dharma. If we are unable to do so, we would run into a sign of breaking the oath at the right time of against it. It is just like the old story that Guan Yin Bodhisattva vowed in front of Buddha to propagate Buddhism dharma and save sentient beings at the place that people unexpected Buddhism. If the Bodhisattva’s intention is unable to achieved, his body will split into a thousand parts at the time that he is unable to do so. The bodhisattva made such oath and then went to Tibetan area to relieve sentient beings. He saved all the sentient beings at the place just like Shanghai. When he accomplished, he went to the other place like Beijing to save others. When he came back to Shanghai and everything resumes the same. There are still many sentient beings to be relieved therefore we call sentient beings are endless. Bodhisattva was a bit discouraged: no matter what oath I have made, the sentient beings are endless to be rescued. Bodhisattva flashed an intention of giving up and his body was broken up a thousand pieces. At this time, Amitabha appeared on the sky said to him: “Bodhisattva, don’t give up your faith. I will help you to relieve the sentient beings. ” Then the body that broke into thousand pieces became the Guan Yin with thousand hands and thousand eyes. In the picture there is a face of Amitabha above the eleven-face Guan Yin. It proves that the Bodhisattva has no duality and no discrimination with Amitabha. The same case applies to many protectors. For example, you act according to the Buddhism Dharma, the protector would absolutely guard you, even the lokuttara protector will. You visualize them upfront, and the karmic creditors behind you since the creditors are doing refuge and we are doing refuge for them as well. However when we doing refuge to the Three Gems，we shall pay attention that we violate the precept of Three Gems if we refuge to the worldly protectors.. We refer to the protectors with smart eyes in the Six-Refuge. What is the one with smart eyes? It is the one with wisdom identified as having three eyes. The three eyes represent wise eyes or wisdom, underlining the insight of Bodhisattva. It is therefore the sangha among the Three Gem.
There are several types of sloth when sitting meditation: if you are probably low in mood, you must therefore cheer up, raising your mindset then going back to practice. The other reason might be the one you didn’t sit straight, or you lean against something or kneel down against the back, as such the three nadi in our body close to our spine make us drowsy. We’ve better get up sitting in lotus position as such we may not fall asleep since we feel the feet painful.
Q: What’s wisdom enlightenment, how to achieve?
A: Wisdom enlightenment shall belong to supreme state, which we may not reach currently. As a matter of fact, our ultimate objective of motivation is to become Buddha, which correspondent to the state of enlightenment we actually expect to get into. Of course it is hard to enter into the state, so we practice Śamatha and Vipaśyanā (meditation and contemplation) as integral, or practice Śamatha first and then Vipaśyanā. Above all, if you don’t want to spend much time on practicing these, you may practice preparatory application; in the process you could achieve the integration of Śamatha and Vipaśyanā. In fact, no matter we practice preparatory application, or Śamatha and Vipaśyanā, or meditation, the ultimate goal is to eradicate the desire, hatred and ignorance. After we eradicate the desire, hatred and ignorance, we can achieve the wisdom enlightenment state. It shall be the supreme state.
Q: May we use the water we offered to the protectors to water flowers? How to deal with the offering water?
A: It is appropriate to put in clean place, say watering flowers. But it is not appropriate to drink I think. Several days ago someone asked if it is drinkable.
Q: In what way shall we ask our family member to refuge to Three Gem?
A: It depends on the family member’s destiny and capacity. If he/she really doesn’t believe, it’s not necessary to force him/her to believe in Buddhism. If you want him to believe in Buddhism, the key is not him but you. Your performances after refuge and practice compare to the one prior to refuge are extraordinary, he/she will be grateful of you, or count on you. In that case, it depends on your family condition, which you might put into a lot of work, or put less to achieve. It really depends on the fate between you and your family. In most of time, you would forgive your family member say you are vegetarian and you need to do homework etc. It’s nice that you bring happiness to your family after you start to learn Buddhism. However, it’s not appropriate that your study triggers emotional problem say you no longer spend time with your family but chanting scriptures or you give money to let them go on their own. Of course you can satisfy your family’s expectation and let them happy so that they can probably step forward to the Buddhism.
Q: Can we drink the Great Compassion Mantra purified water offered to the Buddha?
A: The water shall be drinkable. There is no such phrase as Great Compassion Mantra water in Tibetan area. It’s drinkable. But very few Tibetan people drink it because there is much water with no cost. People just draw water from well and offer it and then pull it into a clean place after offering. If you are lack of water, you can drink it. But the container is an issue. If the container is a glass, you can drink without problem. But if it’s made of copper, which may gather rust if contains water in a longer time. The rust in the water harms the health that is not good for drinking. So it depends on the condition. The water is drinkable, so as to the water offered to the god of fortune. In Tibetan area, there are huge pots stored much water, for the use of offering to the god of fortune frequently. Water is just placed there every day for offering, no need to be offered particularly.
Q: Rinpoche just mentioned that the mind in purified state when sitting still is account for refuge practicing. What is the standard of a purified mind? How do we know that the mind is truly purified at the time of sitting, rather than just think purified?
A: Many people consider very comfortable after sitting. The ones feel more comfortable when sitting longer and don’t want to leave. It is a kind of desire, not so-called purified. What is called purification? What is purification? It is the mindset without any annoyance, and not drowsy to a sound sleep. It is a state of clear mind. You may think over on the life impermanency, which is called mind purification. However, it is not proposed to think this when sitting meditation. I think you could count your breath when you get ready to sit. Actually when your mind is calm down, absolutely you can count your breath in the end. However, when counting breath, you are not intentionally breathe for counting but breathe naturally, breathe in naturally and breathe out naturally. It is not very hard to get it. Your understanding is prerequisite standard of purified mind. The state of purified mind shall be the one when you go to sleep without any annoyance, having no defilement of desire, hatred and ignorance. Neither do you hear the noise around you. The state is hard to interpret in a word or two.
Q: Do the practitioners of Junong Sec pray to reincarnate in Shambhara pure land? Or in Nirvana pure land?
A: Vajrayana is almost the same. It is not necessary to go to Shambhara pure land. The ultimate Vajrayana practice Kālachakravajra when the one is going to die. There is Powa application in Kalachakravajra. The ultimate objective of Powa is to integrate with Amitabha. Achieving such state of integrating with Amitabha is account of nirvana pure land. The nirvana pure land that you will reach in the end, from my point of view just like the respective pure lands of Ten Direction Buddhas has no difference with Shambhara. If you reach Shambhara now, you don’t need to go to nirvana world, which have the same standard. We shall be clear that all the approaches we are practicing are the same. Especially in Han or in Tibet, the ones who preach Buddhism are the same case. Say I am preaching Kālachakravajra, I definitely will say that Kālachakravajra supersedes the others like Pure Land Buddhism, Zen Buddhism, Six-branch Yoga, Mahasandy, Mahamudra. I definitely highly appraise the approach I’m preaching. It shows my respect and esteem on the approach as well as my faith. It is normal. After listening many people consider Kālachakravajra a miracle that they shall practice. Originally they are practicing Mahasandy. Now they give up Mahasandy to practice Kālachakravajra. It is not right. Giving another example, the one preaching pure land Buddhism and Zen Buddhism, will definitely say that pure land Buddhism is very convenient to practice and practitioners are easy to go to the nirvana pure land. The other approaches are definitely not as extraordinary as pure land Buddhism. We shall make it clear that it is the standard of preaching. I am absolutely against that people take part in the approach that someone else consider great, or people learn a little bit of the approach when a master or a living Buddha preach it particularly great. I think that you keep going to practice what you are practicing, no matter it is pure land Buddhism, Zen Buddhism or Mahasandy. You may take part in many approaches. The one practicing Vajrayana can join pure land Buddhism or you can listen to Zen Buddhism preach. The different approaches you listened to will assist in your practicing. If they are truly Buddhism dharma, they definitely shall be of help. If the ones you listened obstruct you of your practice, there must be something wrong with your understanding. We shall pay attention not to obtain particular thought of distinction. The more distinction, the more obstacle encounter along with your practice. Therefore the many books we read take the role in supporting us to practice. It is the key. They are the Buddhism dharma, having no difference and being equal. They shall be the same, the way of becoming Buddha.
Q: Appreciate Rinpoche’s instruction: today is the birthday of Medicine Buddha. Is Medicine Buddha a Mitukpa? They locate at the east of Buddhism land. Their bodies are blue. What’s corelationship and difference?
A：The Medicine Buddha and Mitukpa Buddha are not the same Buddha. Their looks are different. The left hand of Mitukpa holds a meditation sign with a varja pestle. The Medicine Buddha holds a bowl on one hand having a lotus, a kind of medicine in the bowl. Medicine Buddha doesn’t hold meditation sign but hold a flower of Medicine King. The pure land of Mitukpa, the one of Medicine Buddha and Shambhara and nirvana has no difference. The reason of why there are many pure lands is to correspond to various capacities. Some sentient being doesn’t like say nirvana world but likes Shambhara pure land. Then a shambhara pure land is set for him otherwise he goes nowhere for some reason. So Sakyamuni has taught 84000 approaches, all of which are the way of eradicating desire, hatred and ignorance. Sakyamuni preaches dharma in many convenient ways. For example, a heretics talked to Sakyamuni that what he has been doing is killing lives. After killing beings, he takes the blood to offer to spirits. He considers blood offering great and he keep practicing in such way. Sakyamuni would agree with him and say you are doing right, so he won’t reject Sakyamuni seriously and going forward he will be close to Sakyamuni and enroll in Buddhism gradually. This is the right track for him. The pure land is the same case. For example, we are in the human world and were told about the pure land that is full of beautiful treasures such as gold and silver, tophus, agate and pearl. You in your mind like them very much so I describe anything beautiful as the one you like. When in other places say in U.S.A., what would you describe Sakyamuni Buddha? Buddha has big mouth and yellow hairs. He seems fairly like Buddha in such way. Otherwise if Buddha looks like Chinese, he may say he dislike and don’t need to see Buddha. It is highly possible. Hence, people favorite quite different things, the pure lands exist just for different people with different capacity. The ultimate places we would go are the same.
Q: There are many people smoke around us. We are often in a negative time. Buddhism Dharma mentions that it is bad to smell smoke, but we smell quite often. In what way do I deal with?
A: The antidote is a mask, or blocking your nose (smile). You have nothing to do. It will get better if the society really improves and it is improving now. A lot of restaurants have non-smoking area, so do the hotels. It is said that the people smoke are looked down in overseas countries. We haven’t got such custom. The smokers seem to think smoking is elegant who drive car, motorcycle or bicycle holding a cigarette, even smoke when writing. We have no choice but put up with in such environment. Of course you may talk to the smoker that you don’t like smoking even he/she likes and he can’t smoke in this place. You still are in vain. Hence, based on the rules of Buddhism, you shall tolerate his behavior, bad habit, and appraise him to let him comfortable. But it’s really difficult. It will take a decade to expect to be seen.
Q: Where does this Buddha’s relic come from? Is it the offering the celestial or other sentient beings in six destinies make? Or manifestation in emptiness?
A: (Smile) I don’t understand. Ask lay practitioner Lin. He doesn’t know either. I wrote in microblog before that it won’t play any vital role without a purified mind even when you really see a relic coming from heaven. If you treat it a relic so that you initiate a purified mind, it therefore a relic from your point view. Having a relic or no relic shall be treated equally with a peaceful mindset. It is nothing particularly terrific. For example, it is nothing particularly joyful that Sakyamuni became a Buddha. We obtain a mentality of great respect to Buddha, Dharma and Sangha, but we are not extremely excited to what happened, though feel excited a little. But going forward, we maintain a peaceful mind, without great emotion.
Q: Many disciples accept quite a few Dharmas. How to identify the ultimate practice suitable for our own?
A: It is not appropriate that you don’t practice the dharma that you accept. A few days ago I said that many eminent monks including Attisha adopt their own methods, say Attisha request for all of his approaches with great respect. He is a nice and great geshe, nice and great practitioner. He shows respect to all the Sanghas he met, just like he was still a little monk. Upon such respectful request, you may request a lot of dharma and rely upon many gurus. It will benefit your sambhara enhancement, since many mantras as long as you hear will assist you in becoming a Buddha in the future as indicated in varjayana scripts. It is said that at the time of listening to the mantra of Aksobhya Buddha, you will become a Buddha at once. Of course you are required to have a great capacity, and you will become a Buddha right at the time, or at least you certainly grow a seed of relief. Hence, many dharmas are certainly of great. For you, you need to think it on your own. I won’t give an idea when someone asked. Say some disciple asked: my master, some (guru) came, may I go? I said it’s up to you. I can’t decide. If I let you go and you go and get empowerment, the guru will become your guru after empowerment. Then you arouse an annoyance to your guru or any bad thought at some time. You will be in trouble. So you decide. If you consider proper then you go to request. If you think not ready, don’t be jealous to others who have gone, thinking I didn’t go but they go, am I looked down upon? It is not proper. You shall think it. If you respect all the gurus and all the sanghas that we actually shall make it but we didn’t. At least at the time of refuge, we talked about the precept of refuge several days ago that the objects to be refuged are Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. We won’t identify the nationality and religion, neither male or female, all the Buddha，Dharma and Sangha are the object to be refuged, to whom we certainly show great respect. However, our worldling has great annoyance. We create many karmic hindrances at times when we like this or dislike that. It is possible that we create more serious karma if we failed to hold the dharma we have accepted. Therefore in many circumstances, it depends on your decision rather than what I said. You go to see the great guru. Actually there is no bad guru. But you show no respect to him or even arise deviated view on him, then it results in more serious karma. The karma misconduct is serious when deviated view on a good guru originated. So it’s on your decision. Let you ask yourself, will you accomplish it? Requesting for a dharma is nothing about buying clothes on the market. You buy nice looking clothes and you can bear. You get rid of it after wearing a few days. Our practitioners must pay attention on it.
Q: It is said that we have established Kālachakra Society when we make offering to Samantabhadra Bodhisattva today. Appreciate your teaching instruction on the objectives and roles of the society.
A: The society originated from the aspiration of some disciples in Shanghai. I name it Kālachakra Society, for the reason of all of the people no matter Kālachakra Society or bodhichitta Society or other joint practicing group initiating aspiration of many people obtaining virtues and relieving annoyance, and stepping forward on the path of Bodhi. The aspiration is properly initiated I think. The reason why we setup this group or that group is because a lot of us are lazy who require the group practicing to expedite our practice. If you are doing your practice of kowtow or chanting on your own, you may feel tired and take a break while if other people are waiting for you and you don’t want to lose your face therefore you have to keep going. This is a mutual promotion. As a matter of fact, it is a pity that the Kālachakravajra linage won’t be inherited for practicing. So we therefore organize such group to appeal more and more people to enter into this linage and practice it together in order for us to go to the Shambhara pure land for a life tour. This is our ultimate objective.
Q: It is said that each varjayana practitioner has one’s own karmic link Yidam (deity). Do our Junong disciples practice Kālachakravajra Yidam?
A: It could be. Yidam is inherited from India. Many people in Indian with good capacity may identify a Yidam at first, finding the Yidam by all means. Then the one recite the mantra of the Yidam precisely so he/she may see the Yidam several years later. But if unable to chant precisely, ones can’t see either. The saying goes in another way that there is a practitioner in Tibetan area who practices Vajrakila. The mantra of Vajrakila is actually “Om Ban dsra Geiligei laya Sarva Buge neng bang hong bei”, while he read by mistake as “Om Ban dsra Jiliji laya Sarva Buge neng bang hong bei”. Even he recited incorrectly; he still could plug the Vajrakilaka into a rock eventually and watch Vajrakila or Vajrakilaka as long as he would like to see. While one day he saw a monk who told him that he recited the mantra wrong. The monk taught him the right mantra and he recited the right one. However the Vajrakilaka was not plugged into the rock. It is therefore various phenomenon showed. We cannot compare the present to the past. It is the dharma ending period at present. During the past in order to rely on a guru, it takes three years for you to observe your guru. After the three year’s observation, you request for your guru who will observe the disciple for three years as well. It will take six years in total that the guru will transmit the varjayana dharma to you. This is a great tradition and learning approach, but the approach is not convenient now. It is highly possible that you won’t learn the dharma after three years of study. Hence we will try our best to transmit dharma during the time of dharma ending period. Now there are many Kalachakravarja gurus who empowered the dharma which is actually unable to transmit in public. But why do they transmit the secret dharma empowerment to thousands of people? A lot of gurus have initiated the following motivation just like our Kālachakravajra guru said. At the time when we empower the Kalachakra, I am absolutely violating the precept of vajrayana. Do the thousands of people who are listening to the vajrayana obtain the capacity of hearing the vajrayana? Absolutely not, the 70 to 80 percent of them don’t. The purpose of chanting the mantra of empowerment is to plant a Bodhi seed for the people to become a Buddha in the future. The guru could put his life on risk to accomplish the above and he initiates the aspiration that he transmits the empowerment even he will go to the hell in the next life while all the sentient beings obtain the Bodhi seeds. The way of e transmitting the dharma leads to the aspiration initiation. The aspiration is very important in Vajrayana. If you truly indeed initiate such motivation, you may suffer the incalculable pain of hell while the incalculable eon becomes an instant and an instant becomes incalculable eons. This is the merit of aspiration that you could make. The question of Yidam is the same case. Many people asked me what his/her Yidam is. I normally said I don’t know. If you consider of Yidam really important to you no matter he is Guan Yin, Manjusri, Kalachakra or Yamantaka, you just study as long as you like. You are unable to learn even if force you to study what you don’t like. Therefore what you like could expedite your study even if they are not your Yidam. You could choose. During the latter dharma period, there is few thought reading that could know who is your Yidam and who is his. There are thought reading of course but very few. It is appropriate for us who are in Junong Sect or get in touch with a Junong guru that Kalachakra is our Yidam. This is our destiny otherwise you wouldn’t born in this place or keep in touch this dharma.
Q: There are many books about Buddhist Dharma. After we made connection with our guru, do we need to request for guru’s permission/instruction on what book we can read, so as to insist in our practice?
A: It would be of help. Ask our guru what kind of books is suitable. It would be great. Currently there are many vajrayana books, especially those secret vajrayana books which can be published to the public and can be read easily after published. Now it is Dharma ending period. We can go to some places that only emperors were allowed to enter in the past. The vajrayana is the same case. As to the vajrayana books such as Mahasandy, six-branch Yoga, and Mahamudra, many of them could got from the market. Being a Buddhist, I think we require a precept. What kind of precept? It is to supervise us. We intend to achieve something right after we start to learn Buddhism. It is highly impossible and you might be hurt. You therefore require learning gradually, which shall be the safest, unless your capacity is as marvelous as the Sixth Patriarch of Hui Neng who was enlightened when listening to the Diamond Sutra. But few people could be the case. Hence, I think it is the most appropriate to practice Dharma at the safe way. For example when practicing tantric method, you won’t keep an eye on Bodhichitta initiation when you are practicing kowtow. And you won’t take a look at Vajrasattva when you practicing Bodhichitta. It is nothing about not transmitting Dharma but a respect of having you achieve accomplishment going forward. It is important as well. In Tibetan area, the saying tells us that you practice what your guru didn’t transmit to you and you got to know what your guru will tell you, people will look down upon you, even the dog treat you the same. Sometimes when you know too much on a mantra such as getting to know some viewpoint on it, you would be afraid of the Dharma and are hesitate to practice it owing to the fear in mind. It really depends on what fits you. What are suitable for you? First of all at the beginning of entering in Buddhism, you take a look on some books about cause and effect, Three Gems, and the biography of Sakyamuni and other eminent monks. These are not tantric dharma. Read more about causality. Doubt of causality is one of the most serious karma. It is said that you won’t achieve enlightenment if you don’t believe in causality. In fact all sentient being could become Buddha, but you will take quite a long time. Especially among the ones learning Buddhism, there are quite a few people who are interested in Buddhism but dare not believe in Buddhism, i.e. disbelieve in causality. Why don’t they believe in causality? The person who has done a lot of virtuous deeds lives not as good as the others, and he lag behind forever. The person just stares at some bad habits as someone breaking his words or owing money unpaid and so on. People just don’t understand why the ones who have done many bad things in terms of ethics are just promoted. If you really believe in causality, certainly there must be relationship of cause and effect. What a pity of the person! We try not to consider as the above. It is more appropriate that we shall learn the fundamental theory of Buddhism Dharma.
Q: Still question about Yidam. Being the beginner, how to know who is my Yidam? How to know what dharma should be chosen? How to know what scripts are suitable for me?
A: Many of us like to have his own Yidam, or protector. Actually it is because that we stay longer in the world that we feel better than others if we obtain what other ones don’t have. We show to others what we have that you don’t have and we feel stronger than others. The mindset to request Buddhism Dharma is not appropriate. The beginner shall enter in Buddhism at first. What refuge looks like? What is refuge? What kind of mentality we shall obtain before refuge, for example renunciation. What genuine renunciation looks like? As to initiating Bodhichitta, it is the accomplishment of genuine Bodhichitta. Currently we our practitioners talk frequently that we have done perfect. This is our small talks, actually accomplishment is hard to get. For example, it is impossible for us to have a perfection of genuine renunciation, a perfection of Bodhichitta. Why? What is perfection? Perfection is that Bodhichitta never given up in 60 minutes within an hour, in 60 seconds within a minute and one second within the 60 second, never ever given up just as the endless water. The state that the Bodhichitta maintains endless within an hour is called fairly perfection of Bodhichitta. Needless to say perfection of Bodhichitta, it is difficult for us to initiate one minute of genuine Bodhichitta within an hour. It is even harder for us to initiate renunciation, needless to say Bodhichitta. We talk about renunciation and learn Buddhism and refuge. It is simple to talk than to do. We must do it. We first of all need to do, rather than thinking about what we get. We achieve the feeling after we have done and the feeling is hard to express actually. There is such kind of phenomenon in society that many lay practitioners with high education background i.e. many doctors incline to start to write annotation of scripts i.e. Diamond Mantra and else in a couple of years of learning after entering the Buddhism. It’s not appropriate. If you had become a monk, what is the standard of a monk? A monk has to obtain the precept for monks, and apprentice to his guru or teacher for ten years. It is the same case in Han district. The one is so called master who is just as a child able to walk without other one’s leading. After ten years of learning, the one is allowed to receive his apprentice or present sutra lectures or dharma talks. But prior to the ten years of learning, he even doesn’t think about it. It is much safer, as suggested, to read the books written by the senior masters, from Tibetan or Han. The book written by youngsters doesn’t seem unreasonable. But it’s better to read more written by the seniors and then the others. It is more appropriate to obtain a support and then some other books afterwards. It is important too.
Q: Would you mind giving instruction on meditation method of Śamatha and Vipaśyanā? In what way do our beginners sit simply?
A: It is very difficult to accomplish the Śamatha and Vipaśyanā as an integral. Simply speaking, at the beginning one can count the breaths when sitting still and breathe deeply. After the deep breathe, ones’ mind is calmed down. The purpose of deep breath is to calm down the mind. Your mind is distracted by your thought in every minute and second. We didn’t realize when we are busy in doing this and that trivia in our life. Therefore many people at the beginning of sitting have asked that the annoyance came out when sitting still while people seemed peaceful when not sitting. As a matter of fact the annoyance exists all the time but not come out. It is just that we didn’t realize. The mind stays still eventually. When you stay at a place and maintains the state of Śamatha, you won’t realize the bomb which exploded nearby. Under such state, ones remain undisturbed thusness just as the unmoving Mount Sumeru. It is the accomplishment of Samatha. With the Samatha perfection, ones observe the impermanency of the world and emptiness of selfhood from the different view of the mind. During the time of observation the mindset may remain still. Then you go back to the first step of your practice and keep on doing Samatha and then Vipaśyanā, and then Samatha and then Vipaśyanā, back and forth. The more you observe, the stronger the Samatha and both exist in turn. The more you observe, the stronger the composure of your mind, which reach the integration of Samatha and vipasyana. The ongoing practice under the state of Samatha and Vipasyana will lead you to the emptiness. Many of us may ask whether we would open the celestial eye chakra when it moves fairly much at the time of sitting still. The question shows that we didn’t know what the celestial eye really is. The celestial eye won’t open until the integration of Samatha and Vipasyana, which refers to a higher spiritual realm. It is impossible to open the celestial eye when sitting still for a while. You probably foresee something. Someone is able to do so in nature or after practicing. But it is only an integral part of it. How do they know? Because all the people have Tathagata-garbha，the Alaya consciousness of instinct, the same as the dharma nature of Buddha. When the ones close to the dharma nature, you certainly realize something. But it sparkles very short period of time. It may happen that you feel the sense of pain just like the knife cutting your body when you go to the slaughter house, a place of killing fishes. I told the lay practitioners in Beijing who feel tired of practicing to go to the slaughter house more frequently than before. Your renunciation will be initiated terribly strong when you sense it. However it may disappear after you leave. Therefore we may visit quite often. Many people are not willing to go there who are vegetarian no longer eating meat. I think you’d better go to take a look even you don’t eat meat. Observing benefits your renunciation and compassion. This is the way that you really need. The integration of Samatha and Vipasyana is quite simple as well. We’d better not to step to the stage of practicing Samatha and Vipasyana but step to the stage of actual practice, considering the life impermanency and death at any uncertain time during the short period of life. It is the best way that we approach the actual practice after spiritual learning, contemplating and practicing.
Q：What relationship between Other-Emptiness Madhyamaka and Consciousness-only (vijnaptimatrata) is?
A: They are relatives (smile). Consciousness-only accepts the eight minds, so as Other-Emptiness. They are correlated at this view-point, but the insight of Other-Emptiness is preeminent above Consciousness-only. It is because that Prasangika Madhyamaka surpasses Consciousness-only in terms of Madhayamaka theory and Other-Emptiness surpasses Prasangika Madhyamaka therefore Other-Emptiness definitely surpasses Consciousness-only by skipping the Prasangika Madhyamaka. However, many scholars in Tibet and Han have some argument. The one off the Other-Emptiness Madhyamaka consider Other-Emptiness has no difference from consciousness-only. Actually it is not the case. You can take a look the theory of Other-Emptiness by reading Dolpopa’s Treatise of Mountain which has made it clear. There are other books consist of Other-Emptiness theory especially the Ngedon Ten Sutra that we could read, as well as Nirvana Sutra，Diamond Sutra and Heart Sutra. They consist of Other-Emptiness, of course some of them mention self-emptiness. We are quite confused what shall we do? As a matter of fact, the Buddhism sutras are interpreted by various aspects because Buddha taught comprehensively whose one sentence could solve several problems hence the sutras vary too.
Q: Is Rinpoche going to come to UC frequently to propagate Buddhism?
A: This is the first time to come to UC. I have not got used to it. I am a little bit nervous. I feel nothing to say even many people ask me to teach and preach. Right at the time of sitting on the chair, I totally forgot what I want to talk and didn’t know what to say. If you would like to learn, it is better to ask your questions and I answer. We understand each other and are on equal footing having no distinction. I share to you what I know. It is a co-sharing that I am comfortable. We may discuss it later.
Q: How to initiate a firm renunciation in the world? I sense the world meaningless and try to escape but at the same time expect the wealth, career and position and so on.
A: This kind of mentality is a common problem for many people. It is normal. We shall transcendent just like the lotus that emerges unstained from the filth. I consider it great if we can do it as a lotus. Generally many people are eager to earn a lot of money. It is not appropriate that we work for the purpose of earning more money. To the people who want to work for earning money, earning no money is absolutely not allowed for various reasons. If you have many reasons, we are with you to go ahead. When you ultimately become a rich people in the world or in the country, you may realize that many millionaires are doing charity. It is more appropriate for you to do charity early than late when you got rich. Many people have done something wrong. It is hard for them to eradicate it after having done, because what they have done derives from their habitual karma since unbeginningness time. It is easy for them to emerge the mentality of hatred, greed and jealousy that they cannot stop and control. When the thought arises, ones seem drunk and become quite a different person. They are unable to control their emotion and make serious karmic sins. Along with such karmic sin made, we are easy to be defeated with the mentality of very tender mercy and bodhichitta and renunciation. Therefore we shall frequently think about the optimum human body, impermanent life, causality never betrayed and samsara suffered. We can think in an hour every day. That is more important than kowtowing.
Q: How to deal with the unknown person come across who looks like a monk?
A: Treating with respect. By all means we treat people respectful. But we certainly must have our wisdom. I met a lot of people and heard about many stories as well. There is someone who gives a present to you so you are afraid of others who give ultimate present to you. There are many cases in the society such as someone gave something for free at the first time and asked to offer some money in the end. It is said that there is a monk who claimed himself from the Potala Palace and asked for money offering to renovate the Potala Palace. It is definitely not true. There are others who asked for money offering for Jiuhua Mountain, Wutai Mountain or other Four Buddhist holy mountains. Many of them were proved to fake. But we shall respect them when we encounter, as well as many other people. The refuge to the Three Gem indicates that the monk’s clothes even a piece of kasaya is treated with respect just as treating a true monk. Nevertheless the person wearing the kasaya shall be treated with respect. However, we shall not obsess in it. We shall not be credulous but keep a clear mind on what the person has boasted.
Q: Currently we have encountered many gurus who gave different instruction. Whose instruction shall we follow?
A: Definitely different, because of different environment. The instruction presented to 20 people is different from the one to 10 people. The one for today is different from the one for tomorrow. It depends on the environment or capacity needed. For example, the one has learned the five scriptures; it definitely follows his theoretical base to present lecture and talk Dharma. If he got to know Buddhist Dharma the first time or there are various kind of people, we need to consider the majority mindset, it requires our wisdom. As to the reason of why the instruction different, you could observe the difference, and find the reason. Many people got trouble, or quarrel with others or insult you for no reason. You must be angry, but never think about the reason why the person insulted you. For sure you didn’t think about it, since you lost your temper at once and then attacked brutally. As a matter of fact you shall make your mind peaceful and think why it happened. There must be some karmic retribution. For example you car was pulled over at the street and there was a car dashed into your car madly. As per the traffic rules you don’t have any responsibility. But you do have some responsibility as per the Buddhism dharma. You must have the karmic retribution to be crashed. The karma is incredible. Many gurus have their own heritage. They may talk Heart Sutra differently. Literally their heritages are different while the ultimate objectives are the same.
Q: How to choose between staying away from harmful companion and saving sangha? Sometimes we meet someone who bears serious trouble and does hurt others. I would like to lead him to learn Buddhism. Is that against the precept of staying away from harmful companion?
A: You may initiate a Bodhichitta when you meet a person of this kind, expecting him to step on the path of Buddhism. You may help him, but it may become trouble since your habitual energies affected by his during the time of your assistance. At the beginning, he absolutely has no faith on you. It is great as long as you help him and hold a yardstick. You shall persuade him once, twice or three times and not to be persistent if not workable. You could let it go. It is not proper if you insist him in enrolling in Buddhism and strive to persuade him, because you don’t know his causality even you has a warm heart. But when you insist in doing, it becomes an attachment. You’d better let it go. There was a practitioner in Chengdu whose husband doesn’t believe in Buddhism. She was not against him. When she went to listen to the instruction, accepted empowerment, and took part in joint practice, her husband drove to accompany her. When they arrived at the place of the dharma assembly in Chengdu, he didn’t join. I saw him sometimes when he came. He told me that he will come to meet me when he feels ok and he will decide to refuge at the time. I told him it was great. There is another kind of people who are suspect of what Buddhism talk about. The one considers the causality impossible asking who knows and who can prove that virtue is its own reward and evil with its evil. Who will know what receives the next life for what evils you have done today? The people don’t believe the next life exists since no one proves it. There is a story happened in India long before about a Bodhisattva and a king who didn’t believe in cause and effect. The bodhisattva talked about the relationship between cause and effect, and reincarnation as well. The king didn’t believe nevertheless. The bodhisattva had no idea to let him believe. The king told the bodhisattva that he may believe unless the bodhisattva reveal to him. Then the bodhisattva had an idea and said that he can present something in order to let the king believe in Buddhism and causality. How to do it? The bodhisattva may die and the house key may be put under his tongue after his dead. His body could be put in a case that is locked several times and keys were taken by three to four people. The bodhisattva told him where he would be born after dead, what is the name of his father and his mother and when he become their child. How to prove the child is the bodhisattva? There is the king’s key under the child’s tongue. As such, the king could believe him. The king agreed to believe the bodhisattva as long as he accomplishes the above. Then the bodhisattva passed into parinirvana. He has done what he said. There was indeed the key under the child’s tongue and the one under the tongue of the body in the case was disappeared when people opened the case. Hence, the king from then on believed in Buddhism and all of the people in his country believed in Buddhism. It is worthy that the bodhisattva gave up his life. You could do it if the predestined relationship that we call Nidana is really special.
Q: How does the temple construction go? What difficulties do we have encountered? Let us have the opportunity to expand our sambhara. It is said that Rinpoche establishes a clinic to improve the local medical environment. What assistance is needed now?
A：The scripture hall has constructed and will be colored next year. The clinic is under construction. Our objective is to have a moderate size equipped with Ultrasonic B, ECG or image. There is each own clinic in Zelang and Zhuoge Temple. Many people in Tibet have no enough money to see doctors. They don’t go to clinic for a slight illness but a serious one such as terminal cancer. Therefore many of them are dying then. However, there are some hindrance such as having the equipments but unable to use them. Many sanghas went to Zhuoge and Zelang Temple at the time of consecration ceremony. Some Han lay practitioners who went to Zelang to attend the kalachakra empowerment dharma assembly purchased some medicines for the clinic. Among the lay practitioners there were some doctors who helped to give medical treatment and distribute medicines for free and so on. Sooner or later a few lay practitioners are motivated to have the sangha trained to become doctors. Zelang sent two monks and Zhuoge sent two as well. All the tuition fees are given by the lay practitioners in Shenzhen. After finishing study and passing the exams, the each of two monks became doctors. There was a monk resume secular life and we intend to train more monks. But it needs to think over. The clinic is under construction and the rest can be considered later on. The purpose of the clinic is the above. Free of charges is absolutely inappropriate while the clinic requires of the cost of medicines and some of the particular poor people see doctors for free. Many of people have hypertension who didn’t know until they die for it. The people living in plateau are inclined to get hypertension. The hypertension is easy to be managed. People just measure the blood pressure frequently. If having hypertension, taking medicine could properly control it. The major purpose of clinic is such kind of prevention treatment, and curing of small diseases such as influenza and diagnosis other diseases.
Q: In what way do we ask our karmic creditors to leave or release their souls from purgatory?
A: Releasing souls from purgatory is a Vajrayana approach. It was a common practice a long time ago in Tibetan area. For example, there is someone dead. Then some of living Buddhas are called to recite Powa within the three days of his dead. Some of the living Buddha is good at reciting Powa for instance many chant together that make people fall down unconscious, or have the dead person lost a hank of hair from his head. Unfortunately the new living Buddhas are unable to reach such realm. The senior living Buddha i.e. Zhuoge IV and another guru was invited to chant Powa at a place where a person was dead. At the time when the guru finished, Zhuoge IV guru arrived. Then the guru chanted mantra at one side and the other chanted at another side. Both of them have practiced at high level. The other guru wanted to test Zhuoge IV by this chance considering Zhuoge’s well practice. At the time of chanting Powa, he took the soul of the dead away and put it under the pair of Dorje & Bell that placed on the table in front of him. The soul was put under the Dorje & Bell. The guru was chanting the Powa and Zhuoge IV was chanting the Powa at the same time. In the end of chanting, the Dorje & Bell jumped and fell down to the ground, and was broken. The guru was regretted: “why should I do that? I deserve it. ” There are many of such stories. It is said that many Tibetan eminent monks have met each other in Shambhala. Some people believe that Shambhala doesn’t exist but others think it does exist. There is a temple called Charlie Temple in Aba County, one of the Shamanism temples. The living Buddha of the two temples maintains close relationship before. The living Buddha of Charlie is called Jiayangqinrao Jiacuo. His incarnation lives in India now. His accompany found him to go out riding a white horse late at every midnight, approximately 12 o’clock. The attendant went at the time and asked to follow the living Buddha. The living Buddha said that he can’t go with him. But the attendant insisted in companying who felt that he was in the dream holding a state of illusion. There was a white horse pop up in front of him. His guru rode on the horseback, who asked him to follow and to ride behind him if he wanted to go. The attendant then followed his guru and rode on the horse. The guru told him to close his eyes otherwise it would be dangerous to fall. At the time he closed his eyes, they arrived at a place. The guru told him to stay still since he can’t access. The attendant looked around and saw beautiful grassland. He saw a splendid shining palace over there. His guru accessed the palace. The attendant didn’t access and waited for his guru on the grassland. He found a beautiful flower, so he picked it and put into his pocket. When the guru came back they rode the horse to return. Next morning when he woke up, the attendant felt that his dream is so vivid that he seemed to have been there. He suddenly remembered the flower and looked. There is a flower in his pocket. He offered the flower for the Stupa in the temple. This is a true story. There are other cases that the two living Buddha didn’t know each other in the worldling but meet and talk each other in Shambhala. Many cases exist in Tibet. There are many gurus in other sect as well.