Guru Yoga
Teaching by Lama Zasep Tulku Rinpoche
September 1998, Vancouver, BC, Canada

The second benefit of having guru is, it says if you have guru, if you have guru, if you established good teacher-student relationship or guru-disciple relationship it will be so beneficial. It will fulfill the wishes of all the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas because the Buddhas come to the world as a teacher, as a guru, as a master. Comes to the world as a human being. Because we as human beings, we don't have the capacity or ability to receive teachings directly from dharmakaya, the Buddhas who are in the dharmakaya level, in the dharmakaya aspect.

We don't have also the opportunity to receive teachings from sambhogakaya Buddhas, because we are not in that level, we're not Bodhisattvas. In order to receive teachings directly from sambhogakaya Buddha one has to become Bodhisattva. We are not ready, not on that level. Even to receive teachings directly from nirmanakaya Buddhas one has to have lots of good karma. In other words good luck or you could say good karma. If one has very little karma, obscurations in our mind, defilements, then one could see nirmanakaya Buddhas, one can receive teachings from nirmanakaya Buddhas directly.

So, many people are not on that level. Therefore it is necessary to have a teacher, guru who is accessible for us and we can relate as human-to-human, and one-to-one, and on very human level, and necessary. For that reason, the Buddha and Bodhisattvas reincarnate as a human being and what we call avatar or reincarnations or as a human being. Not necessarily the teacher is some kind of reincarnated lama, or recognized by some group or association or lab-rung or monastery. But Buddhas and Bodhisattvas do reincarnate all the time as a normal, ordinary human being in order to guide and help and teach sentient beings. We can relate on a human level, one-to-one.

It says in Tibetan word, [Tibetan word]. "??" means myself, "??" means like same level, equal. Even Buddha and Bodhisattva reincarnate as a human being, more or less same level, so then you can talk, you can share your pain and suffering. And even the guru will say, "I have pain, too. I am human, I have sickness, I have cold, I have flu and I have lung problems and stomach problems and so on. I can't stand these kinds of pollutions and noise and so on and so forth. I'm hungry, I'm thirsty, I need sleep." So just like any other human beings. Then you can share.

Guru on the one hand as a human being, like ordinary person. At the same time, very same time, this guru is, or can be, a fully-enlightened one, the Buddha or can be Bodhisattva. And so if we are on the same level, I don't mean spiritual attainment, of course, we're not the same level. This is why we go to a guru, right? If you are on the same spiritual level, spiritual matter, then what is the benefit of going to somebody? Or you could share as a Sangha, as a friend. But on a spiritual level it is not the same. But on a human level it is as the same, so that you can share.

It says, "All the Buddhas and Bodhisattva reincarnated as a human," and that's the second benefit.

The third benefit is if you have a teacher, guru, and if you have a good and healthy spirit relationship with guru, good guru-disciple relationship, healthy one. If you have good relationship, then your Dharma practice will increase and your merit will increase and, Tibetan word is "sonam", your sonam will increase.

Due to the blessing of guru and good energy and inspiration of guru one cannot be harmed by maras. Mara literally means evil spirit, but this kind of mara is different. It says here, "You cannot be harmed by mara," which means defilements, delusions, and also one cannot be harmed by unwholesome karmas and obscurations.

And also one cannot be influenced by people who mislead you into the wrong direction, wrong path, and into wrong livelihood. Because if you have good teacher, because of the kindness of the teacher and skillfulness of the teacher, skillful means of the teacher and good influence you always have awareness, mindfulness, good energy, clear mind. So you won't have confusion, you cannot be easily influenced by others -- people who mislead into wrong path, or into involving wrong livelihood or unwholesome action and unwholesome karma. 


Onward Onward to Guru Yoga, p.4

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