mandala principle, boundaries, Tibetan Buddhism, Lama Shenpen Hookham UK Buddhist Teacher

Mandala Principle & Boundaries: Boundaries feel threatening to me, what aren’t I getting?

Mandalas are a way of describing the world of our experience in which everything is appearing and yet is ungraspable. The only reason we experience anything is because we can distinguish it from anything else. If it were all uniform with no differentiation it would not be experience would it? It wouldn’t be anything. Continue reading Mandala Principle & Boundaries: Boundaries feel threatening to me, what aren’t I getting?

How can we balance caring for others while looking after ourselves?

People often ask how to balance caring for others while looking after ourselves. If we look in our hearts and realise that what we really want is the happiness of others, then we may feel inspired to try and make everyone happy. What often happens though is that we can’t do it: instead we get exhausted and decide that what we really need is to look after ourselves. But that doesn’t sound like Bodhisattva activity does it? Continue reading How can we balance caring for others while looking after ourselves?

What’s the difference between ‘personal mandala’ and ‘ego mandala’?

Even though our experience of it is distorted, we have access to its qualities already. They shine through our confusion and are what lead us out of it. We need to learn to be subtle about recognising what are the Buddha qualities and trusting them, and what is ego grasping and letting that go. While we are still only on the path, it’s not easy to distinguish between them. Continue reading What’s the difference between ‘personal mandala’ and ‘ego mandala’?

Auspiciousness: is labelling things as auspicious mere superstition and more delusion?

So there is something to ponder about here. If our usual view of the cosmos in which we grasp at entities fixed in time and space actually turns out to be deluded, then how do the events of our lives unfold as if in time and space? What is the connection between things that are not things and are not there? Continue reading Auspiciousness: is labelling things as auspicious mere superstition and more delusion?

What is the difference between commitment and not seeing the reality of  impermanence?

If impermanence meant that everything changed all the time so there is no point in doing anything, then life would be pretty meaningless wouldn’t it?
What gives life meaning is connecting to our Heart Wish and aligning our intentions with it.  As we align we commit to a particular direction and then let go into that direction and see what happens.  When we make a commitment to others we want them to believe in and trust our commitment to our intention and for them to co-operate with us on that basis.
Continue reading What is the difference between commitment and not seeing the reality of  impermanence?

pranidhana, prayer, buddhism, mon lam,

Is a pranidhana – a wishing prayer or the power of our wishes and intentions – just a concept?

The power of the pranidhana comes from the true nature of reality – the Indestructible Heart Essence – the Unborn and non-Compounded.  This never dies and is our Tathagatagarbha or Buddha Nature.  When it is no longer covered by confusion it has the power to spontaneously accomplish all it wishes and intends or has ever wished and intended. Continue reading Is a pranidhana – a wishing prayer or the power of our wishes and intentions – just a concept?