from 'Living Dharma' by Venerable Lama Yeshe Losal

A beginner's mind is often compared to a big waterfall with thoughts tumbling down like rushing water, but there's no need to get upset or frustrated. Through regular practice it will gradually settle, become as gentle as a quiet river, and finally as deep and peaceful as an ocean without waves.

We shouldn't get impatient or angry if our mind keeps wandering and we have to bring it back every second. Anyway, mind cannot be subdued by anger; it can only be tamed with love and kindness. We should not, in the name of meditation, punish or upset ourselves. We should treat our mind the way a very tolerant and loving mother would treat her naughty child. The child has so much energy that it jumps and messes around all the time and tries to run out of the room. The mother doesn't get upset or angry, she doesn't beat it up. She lets it play, but within the confines of one room. Slowly, the naughty child will use up all his or her energy and come to rest. We should also allow our mind to jump anywhere it wants to jump, but watch it constantly and bring it back every time, a million times if necessary. We should not be  judgmental, get impatient, discouraged or angry, otherwise our meditation will become very tense, difficult and painful. We give total space to our mind and let it wear out its own energy.......................go to whole chapter

Meditation is the Key to Fulfilment
from 'Living Dharma' by Venerable Lama Yeshe Losal
Wherever I go, I try to help beginners to learn the right way to start meditating, and to show those who think they are really advanced and know all about meditation that there is still a lot of room for improvement. According to the practice lineage, if one is able to practise Buddhism wholeheartedly, properly, meditation is one's food, meditation is one's partner, meditation is one's wealth, meditation fulfils every aspect of one's needs and wants!

Milarepa was a very famous Tibetan Yogi who lived in the 11th century - I hope many of you have read his life story and songs.  When he was meditating in the mountains, his body turned green because he had nothing to eat except nettles.  The king of Nepal once invited Milarepa, offering him great wealth, but he refused. Milarepa told the king that he was actually richer than him because he didn't need anything.

We are mentally very rich when we desire nothing. According to my experience, it is very good to really take to heart the notion that meditation can completely fulfil our every need, however difficult this idea may be to adopt in the beginning. Compared to a person who is very successful, who has a job, a wife, money, children, then I, a monk, have none of these, but if you compare our respective states of mind, I am much wealthier than this person because I have nothing to lose. As I have nothing to lose, I have no fear.  When you have things, you are afraid of losing them. When you desire a wonderful thing, you are jealous of those who have it and once you have it, you must protect it. I have none of these, so I'm a most satisfied human being. What do I need? Just some simple food to sustain me and a roof above my head. I'm happy wherever I am. I can go to any part of the world, it makes no difference to me. I'm at peace with myself all the time.This is all due to this wish-fulfilling mind: it fulfils everything. I've found all the things I need. I don't have to chase what I want out there. I have found it right here, in my own mind. That's why I'm free.

For me, meditation is the best teaching any teacher can give. People in Buddhist centres may tell me, 'Don't teach meditation, because people don't like it and will run away!'  But if we only talk, talk, talk, and none of us meditates, then what change is ever going to take place?

In my view - as I have understood from my own guru - simplicity, dedication, faith, and never giving up meditation practise even for one day, that is what really matters. Meditation is like food: one has to take it every day. So many people are practising as if they were having peaks of fever!  When they feel very good, they can meditate for one, two or three hours but when they feel low, they totally give up practising, just when they need it most. We need to develop steadiness through regular daily practice.

The Paramita of Meditation
excerpted from Way to Go
by Khentin Tai Situ Pa
The first aspect of meditation is the development of an inner awareness that acquaints one with the mind as it really is, beneath its superficial layer of obscuration. When there is no practice of meditation it is impossible to practice generosity, skilful conduct, forbearance and diligence fully - they cannot become 'perfections' because their very essence, this inner awareness is lacking. In order to get to know our mind as it is, we first practice samatta (Tib. shi-nay) meditation. This makes the mind more tranquil and lets it rest in its own qualities, free from the disturbing presence of recent accumulations. Samatta is developed by cultivating an awareness, a mindfulness of everything that arises. In the meditation session we relax the body, speech and mind and rest naturally and simply in the present state which is by nature free from all the obstacle-delusions of desire, anger, ignorance, jealousy and pride. go to rest of teaching



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There should not be any difference between "Dharma practice" and "daily life". "Dharma practice" does not mean just sitting in meditation or saying pujas, but having a positive mind in all our actions. Wherever our body, speech and mind are, whatever we are doing, speaking, thinking; that can also be our practice.

Dr Akong Tulku Rinpoche