H.H. the Dalai Lama, the most prominent contemporary figure in Tibetan Buddhism, teaches regularly on a variety of topics ranging from entry level lectures to profound oral commentaries on seminal texts covering subjects such as Wisdom, Compassion, Ethics, Nature of the Mind, Buddhism and Science, and Meditation and Psychotherapy. His office does a great job making the teachings available through its official webcast. Now they are available in a podcast here as MP3 audio files encoded at 64Kbps mono. If you rather see video, check out the “Dalai Lama Video Teachings” podcasts (available in Standard Quality and High Quality).
May 14th, 2009
Episode 40 of 409 episodes
The Bodhisattva’s practice is to analyse your faults and then discard them. Observe your speech to ensure you don’t say anything offensive. As Atisha remarked, “In company examine your words; alone examine your mind.” When afflictions and disturbing emotions arise, apply a remedy, otherwise they will multiply and become too powerful to counter. Put the fire out while it is small. To read and reflect on the 37 Practices of a Bodhisattva now and then is very beneficial. The wisdom chapter of the Guide is derived from the writings of Nagarjuna, Aryadeva and Chandrakirti, in addition to the collection of the Perfection of Wisdom Sutras. The selflessness of phenomena is explained in relation to the four close placements of mindfulness. The body is viewed as unclean and impermanent. Feelings are viewed as momentary and unreliable. The mind is viewed as impermanent and therefore not the self, and phenomena comprising all mental factors are viewed as selfless. Each of the parts comprising the self is unfindable in terms of intrinsic existence, and yet to say they do not exist would be a mistake too. Dependent on other factors and conditions, they are completely devoid of any independent nature, despite appearing so clearly and solidly. We conclude that they appear as mere designations of the mind. Convinced that there is no intrinsic existence is how we meditate on emptiness. Grasping at solid things is why we suffer. Reflecting on how all other beings do the same we generate compassion. His Holiness concludes the teachings with a tantric initiation and the comment that emptiness in the tantras is the same as that presented in the sutras. What is different, however, is the mind that understands it. Tantra employs the innate or primordial mind, not the ordinary mind, so we have to let the innate mind manifest and tantra provides various ways to do so.