Topics include: How to develop a good heart, how to practice throughout the day, how to develop the wish for enlightenment, the eight verses of mind training, 18 pledges for developing a good heart, the six keys to successful practice, the five powers, the five mental poisons, seven steps to developing a good heart, the three virtues, how to respond to the eight worldly thoughts, the real meaning of freedom from attachment, how to behave in difficult situations, the difference between how things happen and why things happen, how to send your mind into death (powa), and seeing angels.
Around 1000 AD, 1500 years after the time of the Buddha, the Tibetans undertook a monumental task: to translate thousands of pages of Buddhist literature from Sanskrit into Tibetan. It took them 700 years to complete translations of the kangyur (the word of the Buddha) and the tengyur (the Indian commentaries). Now, as Buddhism has been making a big push westward, Geshe Michael’s aim is to complete an even larger task: to translate hundreds of thousands of pages of Buddhist literature into modern languages.
Geshe Michael Roach gave three days of special teachings on meditation and the nature of the mind in Sedona. These teachings are taken directly from The Angel Debates The Devil, a dialogue between the good and evil that happens in our mind, by Lobsang Chukyi Gyeltsen. The text is at the same time extremely funny and extremely deep, as it reveals the tricky ways that our mind deceives us into believing we are thinking and acting in a way that actually helps us. This teaching will help us to unravel these seductive arguments of the Devil in our own mind to order to be successful in this life, and to learn how to develop the skills necessary to confront any obstacle.
Around 1000 AD, 1500 years after the time of the Buddha, the Tibetans undertook a monumental task: to translate thousands of pages of Buddhist literature from Sanskrit into Tibetan. It took them 700 years to complete translations of the kangyur (the word of the Buddha) and the tengyur (the Indian commentaries). Now, as Buddhism has been making a big push westward, Geshe Michael’s aim is to complete an even larger task: to translate hundreds of thousands of pages of Buddhist literature into modern languages. Since the blossoming of Buddhism in Tibet, no less than 200,000 pages of brilliant commentary have been composed by masters and scholars in the Tibetan language. In this ongoing series of courses, Geshe Michael’s goal is to create and guide a team of young translators to translate these great classics.
These teachings are taken directly from The Angel Debates The Devil, an ancient Tibetan teaching on emptiness by His Holiness the First Panchen Lama, who lived 1565-1662. The text is at the same time, extremely funny and extremely deep. It will help us be successful in this life, and in the next as well. This is the 11th ACI program dedicated to this ancient classic. We’ll be focusing on how “me” relates to body & mind, and how to change body & mind into an enlightened being with a rainbow body and a clear-light mind. As the Lama says, we’ll be trying to hit emptiness with the arrow of our mind, even as we wear a blindfold.
Dorje Senge (Diamond Lion) lived from (1054-1123) and is the author of one of the most famous buddhist texts for developing a good heart (lojong) called the Eight Verses. It’s full of very practical advice for being a kinder and more compassionate person. Diamond Lion was one of the Kadampas, who were the first generation Buddhists in Tibet. Lojong texts for developing a good heart were very popular amongst the Kadampas.
There is a strong relationship between our ability to love and our inner body of channels, chakras, and prana. Great yogis of ancient times mapped out this inner body, sometimes called the Rainbow Body, and found methods of using it not only for greater health, but for greater knowledge—and for a greater capacity to love.
This Seven-Point Lojong is based upon the Advices for Training Oneself in the Greater Way by Geshe Chekawa (1101-1175), and contains many powerful advices on how to practice thinking and acting like a bodhisattva. These teachings and practices were kept secret for centuries because masters of the past did not want their seemingly mystical verses to be misunderstood. This topic was covered twice, each time with a different emphasis, and both versions have been provided.
The text of the Wheel of Knives describes how bodhisattvas in the vicious circle of life are like peacocks who actually find poisonous plants more nutritious than medicinal ones. The idea is that the bodhisattvas can transform inner afflictions and outer difficult situations into precious opportunities for personal practice and helping others. According to the text, each unpleasant thing or event that ever happens to us is a result of “what goes around comes around”: the things we have done to others are returning back to us like a wheel of knives.
This selection of poetry is from His Holiness the First Panchen Lama, Lobsang Chukyi Gyaltsen. The poems are meant to convey the First Panchen Lama’s own inner progress in developing the steps of the path, and also to illustrate for us how he conducted his life and practice in the external world, as a real example for us to follow. In each case, these selections are chosen to relate in some way to a particular lam-rim, or step of the path, that we ourselves are working on.