Teaching From Garchen Rinpoche


Teaching From Garchen Rinpoche

Garchen Rinpoche

There are two major systems in this world, the mundane and spiritual. These two systems are like two eyes, thus it is important to know them both. It is important to know the essence of these two systems. Some people in the world refuse all spirituality, they only believe in the improvement of science.This is slightly mistaken. We do need science, but at the same time must not neglect our mind. And even with different belief systems there is disagreement. To me, all religions are necessary and good. I also am very fond of science. I like to have two eyes wide open.

A person who is only concerned with this lifetime is like someone roaming around aimlessly in a pathless desert not knowing where to go.

A person who understands karma, cause and effect, is like someone walking on a road, knowing where to go and where they are, but still they have to walk around mountains and face other difficulties.

A person with bodhichitta is like someone going on a train. One goes straight through the mountain and is not obstructed by any obstacles on the way. One also reaches the destination faster, a person with love in their hearts can easily sever the flow of afflictions. If one has bodhichitta one becomes very powerful in accomplishing great activities that bring benefit to others. As love will destroy self-grasping, wisdom will naturally dawn and thus one will unmistakenly know what to adopt and what to discard. Going with the train is like cultivating relative bodhichitta.

*When self-grasping has diminished and one sees the nature of mind, one [has] realized ultimate bodhichitta, emptiness. This is like going on an airplane.*The airplane moves above the clouds, the clouds are like thoughts and the space above is the expanse of dharmakaya. The airplane of clear knowing awareness moves through the dharmakaya unobstructedly.  It sees the entire world and also the clouds below, but as it overrides the clouds it is not bothered by the clouds, rain, and the storms.

*Similarly, when one realizes the nature of mind,*one is no longer affected in any way by the clouds of desire and hatred. Awareness is above these clouds. As the dharmakaya is like space, it is unchanging. Space does not come or go; space always is as it is.  Realizing this there is no fear of death; space does not die nor is it born. The phenomena of samsara and nirvana are like clouds; they arise momentarily, but are as they are, compounds. They are impermanent, subject to disintegration, coming and going.  Moving above these clouds one will not grasp at their substantial reality and thus will not cling to thoughts of desire or hatred. To see this nature even for just an instant is mahamudra. You will never gain anything new.

Awareness is like fire – in the beginning it is like a spark, in the end a blazing fire. You are not creating a great mind that you do not yet possess. To see it for just a brief instant is still seeing it, but of course it must be habituated. Only when we preserve this nature continuously will we achieve the state of great happiness and peace where there is no more suffering


From Garchen Institute in the US, the home of Garchen Rinpoche. Posted on FB