For example, as you wake up out of bed and open the curtains, you can be thinking this is like awakening from the sleep of ignorance. “May this day be one more step on the path of Awakening, may it awaken myself and others.” As you think and wish like this, note the space of awareness in which all your sense impressions are happening and in which all your thoughts and feelings are happening. Relax into that sense of space and waking up. Continue reading Don’t Just Leave Meditation on the Meditation Seat – How to Practise Daily Life Awareness
A Student writes: My question relates to the Heart Wish – it struck me today that I often feel guilty about living so much in the world, socialising, listening to music, having fun. Although the guilt is just a thought, I still feel it needs exploring… Lama Shenpen responds: Yes, it does. It suggests you could do more to make socialising, listening to music and … Continue reading The Natural Tension of the Heart Wish – Balancing Living in the World and Practising Dharma
A student writes: If the self is non-existent, what motivates people to meditate and do things such as this training course? Lama Shenpen responds: Do I ever say that the self is non-existent? What the Buddha always taught was that what was impermanent, unsatisfactory and not as we wanted it, could not be the Self. The Self, in this context, is the one who wants … Continue reading Not Self – If the Self doesn’t exist what would motive people to meditate?
We need to question what the values are that we are harnessing our will-power to. Maybe we need to use our will-power to do less rather than more? Could doing less be more generous in the end, more disciplined? Continue reading Misplaced Willpower: Could doing less be more generous in the end?
“One day Karma Thinley Rinpoche asked, ‘What make your mind relax?’ I told him, ‘Swimming in the sea – throwing myself into the big waves without a care in the world like I did as a child.’ With wide-eyed amazement he told me that would frighten him…” Continue reading What makes your mind relax? Learning from Karma Thinley Rinpoche – A new excerpt from Keeping the Dalai Lama Waiting & Other Stories
If you can relate to your present suffering with some kind of sense of it being your path, then the suffering itself becomes your practice. Just being able to let go of negative thinking and struggling with the pain and being more simple about it, that already means you are making the suffering into the path. Continue reading Pain and suffering as practice & how our thoughts can increase the suffering of pain
The problem here is that the Shamata [calm abiding meditation) is strong but there is very little insight [Vipashyana meditation]. You need to become interested in the nature of the thoughts instead of just letting them go. If you let them go too quickly it is almost as if you are cutting them off rather than simply letting them be. It is a very fine edge or distinction… Continue reading Meditation makes my mind dull and sleepy, what can I do?
It’s not a kind of intellectual understanding where we work out this is happiness because it’s not suffering – we know it when we recognise our True Nature… Continue reading How will we recognise the bliss of Awakening when we have nothing to compare it to?
I think it is very important when our energy is low not to drain our energy more by feeling bad about ourselves and chastising ourselves for not doing better or doing more, or comparing ourselves unfavourably with others or with our past performance. Continue reading How can we engage in meditation if we experience low energy?
A few weeks ago Lama Shenpen was live in conversation with Lopen Dr Karma Phuntsho of the Tsadra Foundation’s Buddha-Nature initiative, discussing the deep topic of Buddha Nature, which can now be viewed on YouTube and above. On the Tsadra’s Buddha-Nature resource website, it also has created several handy, short clips divided into topics which can be viewed here. Continue reading Lama Shenpen in Conversation on Buddha Nature