Event Calendar of The His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche

October 23, 2011

At the Glorious Jewel Buddhist Center in Taipei, disciples and believers reverently listened to the audio recording of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s Dharma teachings from October 24, 2010.

Before the puja, a female disciple and her sister, who is also a disciple, shared stories of how His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche saved their parents. Her father had cataracts and glaucoma for over forty years as a side effect of having diabetes. In March 2006, her father’s left toe became inflamed. His wounds festered and would not heal, so his left leg had to be amputated below the knee. In June of 2008, he was admitted to the hospital for severe hyponatremia and change in his mental status due to adverse effects of some long-term antihypertensive medications. Several days later, he was unexpectedly transferred to the intensive care unit (ICU), where he required intubation due to aspirational pneumonitis resulting from tube feed aspiration.

Her father gradually regained consciousness after he stopped being affected by the anesthesia. At first, he didn’t know why his mouth and nose were uncomfortable, and then he was unable to speak because his mouth was blocked. He intentionally used his hand to pull at the nasogastric tube. He undoubtedly suffered very much when he did it. The disciple and her sister immediately stopped him, and then they told him to be patient with the intubation. Her father first opened his eyes widely and listened to their explanation carefully. He then became frustrated when he realized that he would have to face those treatments. He angrily closed his eyes and refused to respond to his daughters anymore. They always visited their father during visiting hours; however, the following days were the same. Even if he was awake, he always closed his eyes and turned his head to the other side. It did not matter if they tried to make him laugh or comfort him.

During that time, her heart hurt. She knew that her father had already accepted that it was the end of his life, but he was angry that his family members were inflicting pain on him in these ways. She could not help but cry out to God. Her father devoutly believed in Christianity his whole life, and he was such a good old man who only knew about devoting and dedicating himself. Why did her father have to suffer through this dying process? Why were they, his children, unable to share his suffering?

Her father’s attending physician told her that because her father had diabetes for many years, his organs and immune system were functioning poorly already. To treat the pneumonia, the hospital had already given him the highest dose of antibiotics, but her father’s lungs were still deteriorating. In addition, her father’s heart had only 17% of its function left. Other patients would have been given one shot of adrenaline in an emergency, but her father was given cardiac stimulants in an intravenous drip twenty-four hours a day. The doctors also told her that they were going to do a tracheostomy and that they needed the family’s consent quickly. At the time, she still naively asked, “When will my father be able to go home?” The doctors calmly replied, “He will not be able to go home, because he cannot survive without life-support equipment” She then asked, “Is the length of stay restricted in ICU?” The doctor replied without hesitation, “Your father is a special case; he can stay until he dies!” When she heard the doctor’s words, she felt a very strong sense of powerlessness. How could she relieve her father from his suffering? How could she help him live the last moments of his life in peace and joy?

When her cousin heard about the situation, he called her immediately, and repeatedly encouraged her and her brother to beseech for an audience with a capable Tibetan Buddhist guru—Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. At the time, she was totally unconvinced, but due to her cousin’s sincerity and because she had no other way to help her father, she asked her cousin to sign up to beseech an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.

On June 24, 2008, she went with her second older brother—her older brother had just gone abroad—and her sister to beseech an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. While they were waiting, she heard Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche loudly rebuke a believer, “You did not think clearly about what it is that you want to beseech. Leave! Think clearly about what you want to beseech and then come to see me again.” When the three of them knelt down in front of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche and made prostrations, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche kindly and compassionately asked them what their problem was. She immediately lost control and began to cry. She clearly knew that her tears were not caused by grievances or fear, but because she knew that she had found a savior! Her brother replied, “Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, please save the life of my father.” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche immediately replied, “Your father’s body is already so worn down. What use is saving his life?” At the moment, she was astounded, because she had not even described the situation. How could Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche have known? But she also immediately thought about the previous believers who were reprimanded. She knew in her mind that she had to beseech for the right thing so her father could be saved! Therefore, she immediately raised her hand and hurriedly said, “Let me speak! Let me speak!” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche said with a smile, “Okay, you can speak!” She suddenly forgot to cry, but was only eager to speak to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. “I beseech Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche to save my father from his suffering.” Even now, she remembers the moment when Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s face was full of warmth and compassion as he replied, “That is the right thing to beseech for! Okay, I will save your father. But your siblings have to be vegetarians from now on, and also attend the Chod puja and regular puja on the weekends.”

Previously, they had gone to various places seeking divine advice. No matter what kind of help they sought, staff in those places usually asked them to donate some money to burn incense or add oil for lighting lamps. Sometimes they were asked to donate 50,000 or 100,000 NTD, or even more. The donations were said to be for repaying various gods after they had been given the help they asked for. The Glorious Jewel Buddhist Center, however, is a very special center because Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche only asked them to begin to become vegetarians and learn Buddhism; that’s all.

Initially, her father didn’t respond to the antibiotics the doctors had prescribed during the ten or so days he stayed in ICU. The symptoms of his pneumonia gradually spread and the infection grew. Nonetheless, beginning the day after they went to make an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, her father’s pneumonia began to improve. With her father’s rosy complexion and high spirits, she knew that the miracle had arrived. Within as few as six days, the doctor was able to remove her father’s tubes. He didn’t have to rely on the huge heart-lung machine. Not only could he breathe on his own, but he was also able to leave ICU and move to the regular ward. Two days after her father checked in the regular ward, she purposely asked his primary physician, “Didn’t you predict that my father would die in ICU?” The doctor hesitated a little and replied, “I’m sorry! I can’t explain this situation either.”

Actually, she didn’t mean to embarrass the doctor, but confirm that this was a miracle. Four days later, her father fully recovered, checked out of the hospital, and healthily and safely returned home. After returning home, her father became talkative and cheerful. He also became healthier, was in even higher spirits, and had a better appetite! During their previous meeting with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, he told them that if they had not implored for him to save their father, he would have died around September in the Lunar Calendar. Moreover, her father would have suffered painfully and tortured by various medical treatments. Yet, if Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche saved her father, her father would die earlier without much pain. When she saw that her father was healthy and had a great and bright spirit, she sort of doubted what Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had told them. From her point of view, her father—based on his condition at the time—should have been able to live for another two or three years without any problems.

When her father was serving in the armed forces, a commanding officer passed him for promotion. Eventually, her father only attained the rate of a lieutenant colonel, and he kept it until he retired. Her father bitterly hated the commander and often said that he would like to eat his flesh and drink his blood. Once she read a book mentioning that if a person dies with hatred, he or she will be reborn in the Three Evil Paths. Several times, she tried to comfort her father and ask him to stop hating. She asked him, “Why do you care so much about a dead person?” She did not think that her father would answer her question by saying, “Even if I have to go to hell to take my revenge, I will.” One evening after her father left the hospital, he suddenly told her, “I forgive him! I no longer hate! My mind is now at peace!” Hearing this, she was so surprised that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had also saved her father’s wisdom life.

On August 10, 2008, her father died peacefully in his sleep with a smile on his face. Everything was like what Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had told them, that her father would leave without pain. On November 2, 2008, the woman and her elder sister took refuge under Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche and became Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s disciples. After seeking refuge, they started to diligently encourage their mother to attend pujas with them. At the beginning, their mother did not have determination to adopt a pure vegetarian diet. The female disciple did not push her, as she believed in Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s great power and thought that all could be arranged well. Her mother only attended Chod pujas at first. After one month, her mother naturally adopted a vegetarian diet and started to attend the regular pujas on Sunday.

Her mother suffered from rheumatoid arthritis in her knees. For the past forty years, her mother went to almost all the hospitals and clinics, and saw famous doctors trained in Western medicine and doctors of Chinese medicine. She only had to hear about the effect, and she would try out folk prescriptions or doctors who did not have a license. Some folk prescriptions seemed to take effect at the beginning, but after a while they started to have side effects. Gradually her mother gave up, as the “cures” or medicine brought out side effects that were often more unbearable than her initial pain. The pain in her mother’s knees was so unbearable that she needed to be supported. Because her mother had difficulty moving about, she could do nothing but sit at home alone during the week. Only on the weekends would her family members go back home to keep her company or take her out. Afterward, her mother usually felt depressed and sad. Sometimes it was hard for her to avoid being negative, which made things difficult for the female disciple’s elder brother and wife, who lived with the mother.

In May of 2009, after attending regular pujas for months, her mother decided to seek refuge. At the time, her mother still needed her two daughters’ help when she walked. If she sat for a long time, she would feel great pain in her knees and have difficulty standing up. However, some insightful Dharma brothers noticed that her mother’s spirit and complexion had shown obvious improvement. One day, the disciple and her sister took their mother to implore to take refuge. There was a light rain shower that day. Fearing their mother might fall down, the two sisters held their mother even more tightly. When they came before Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, the two sisters performed prostrations whereas their mother, due to her knee problems, merely bowed to show respect. The benevolent Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche asked what they beseeched. Her mother replied, “I pray to be taken into your refuge.” Without a second word, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche gently said, “Fine, go enter your name!” The female disciple and her sister, overjoyed, performed prostrations to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. Her mother had difficulty hearing and did not know that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had agreed. She stood there without any facial expression. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche saw her standing still and asked, “What else do you want to ask?” Her mother, still unable to understand what Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche said, apologetically said, “Well, I can’t hear you clearly.” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche smiled and bestowed a blessing with a Dharma instrument upon her mother. When Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche was finished, she and her sister gratefully performed another prostration. Thinking that everything was all set, her mother did not wait for them and walked out by herself.

When the two sisters got up, they took their purses and hurried out to look for their mother. She was standing amazed on the stairs in front of the adjacent building. She asked, “Why am I walking up the stairs on my own?” Her mother had severe rheumatoid arthritis. She needed assistance when walking on level ground, let alone climbing the stairs, which requires bending of the knees. In retrospect, her mother had to rely on assistance to walk, with great difficulty, up and down the stairs in the past decade. Even though she had taken only two steps on her own, she was greatly surprised. The disciple and her sister were astonished to see their mother walking tens of meters on her own, because she usually needed their assistance. They all opened their eyes and mouths wide and gasped in amazement at Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s blessing power!

In August of 2009, she and her mother attended together the Chod puja and tourist activities of the Daimonji festival at the Glorious Jewel Buddhist Center in Kyoto, Japan. Before departing, they met a Dharma brother at the airport. When she and her mother learned that the Dharma brother was in the final stage of lung cancer, they were amazed, because except for being thinner, the Dharma brother was almost no different from ordinary people. She can still recall that after the completion of the Chod puja, because the Glorious Jewel Buddhist Center in Kyoto was on a mountain, people had to walk a very long path down a hill to board a tour bus to return to the hotel. Because the disciple carried luggage, she walked slower. However, two elders walked fast and vigorously. One of them was a terminally ill lung cancer patient, and the other was an eighty-three-old woman suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. Both of them talked cheerfully and walked at the front of the procession. After seeing this, the female disciple was so happy that she almost wanted to cry! She knew that her mother’s fate had wonderfully changed after she took refuge under Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche!

Following this, she told everyone her aunt’s story. Her aunt is also a disciple. In February of 2009, her aunt was hit by a car while riding a motorcycle home after Sunday’s puja. After resting for a while, although she did not have obvious and serious injuries, she kept saying that she had pain in different parts of her body. She was examined by a doctor, but nothing was discovered. At the time, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche asked a female disciple to inquire about her illness, and to advise her to come back as soon as possible to attend pujas. The female disciple remembers that during that period, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche often enlightened from the Dharma throne, “As long as you attend pujas, you will receive blessings and protection.”

After resting for about half a year, her aunt began to take her niece’s car to attend pujas. However, each time she rode in the car, her aunt continuously complained about pain in different parts of her body or enumerated all the mistakes of her son, daughter-in-law, daughter, son-in-law, and husband. Amazingly, during that period, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, often advised attendees from the Dharma throne that everyone should deeply believe in the law of cause and effect, give rise to deep repentance, and accept all karmic retribution that happens to them.

One day when they drove to the Glorious Jewel Buddhist Center in Taipei, her aunt complained about this and that as usual. Her aunt finally sighed, “My son is so unfilial. He has never entered my room to care for me from the accident. Nor has he asked if I was uncomfortable or needed anything.” The disciple and her mother heard her but said nothing, because they really did not know whether to comfort her or tell her not to complain anymore.

At the very end of the puja that day, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche suddenly said, “Do not complain that your son has never entered your room to care for you or ask if you are uncomfortable or need anything! Actually, if he is willing to work hard, make money to support the family, and not trouble his parents, then he is a good and filial son.” Then, the disciple was so surprised that she was speechless. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s enlightenment was as if he had been in the car with them; he knew everything in his mind. However, the disciple’s aunt eventually listened to the enlightenment that day. When they drove back home, her aunt was in a very good mood and no longer talked about her pain. The disciple knows that compassionate Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche helped her aunt solve the complexity in her heart.

The female disciple took this opportunity to thank Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche with an incomparably sincere and earnest heart. She believes that if it were not for the great practitioner who follows Dharma, her father and mother would have been headed toward a different fate. Being the daughter, she would have fallen into helpless sadness and pain from which she would not have been able to remove herself! She also thanked her father and mother for their sacrifice and devotion to let her have the fortune to make a karmic connection with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. She is not only able to restart being a human under the leading of great practitioner who follows the Dharma, but she also is able to discover own evil deeds, evil behavior, selfishness, self-interest, and self-righteousness under the guru’s unceasing enlightenment and blessings. She felt that she had wasted her life. She doesn’t know how she can repay her parent’s and the guru’s grace. All she can do is to closely follow the guru’s steps, obey the guru’s words without other thoughts, constantly examine her own inner essence, and lay down past selfishness and pride. Then, she will be able to really repay her parent’s grace, as well as the guru’s, in the future! Finally, she prayed that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s Dharma body would be healthy and that the activities of Buddha Dharma would be sound and prosperous.

Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche bestowed the following teachings: During today’s puja, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche will continue to give teachings on the “mind.” It is a teaching that belongs specifically to Buddhism. Other religions do not mention the mind; believers pray to their gods and ask them to give them something. Recently, Buddhism began having the same situation. Some believers thought that they don’t need to do other things, and that the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas would solve their problems or heal their illness as long as they could recite the name of Buddha and make prostrations to the Buddha. If it were so easy, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche would give up his cultivation, because Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s guru is His Holiness the Drikung Kyabgon Chetsang, and Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche could beseech His Holiness to continually bestow blessings. Even if Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche reiterated the teaching, you wouldn’t believe that you are cultivating Buddhism. In Buddhism, you must learn the Buddha’s teaching by listening to your guru’s teaching and attaining Buddhahood.

The first disciple who repented took such a long time to address her issue that she failed to speak of her aspiration to be reborn in the Pure Land. This shows that she still wanted to live longer to watch her younger siblings and hope that they would be better off. Nonetheless, if they really lived well, she would be reluctant to pass away. Likewise, you would want to be liberated from all suffering if you saw your family members go through hardships. If all your family members are well, you will have difficulty letting them go. If you fail to aspire to attain liberation from the cycle of birth and death, your practice will have been in vain.

Do not think that as long as you have taken refuge, you do not need to do anything, and everything will get better. This is just like the thinking of the female disciple who repented openly before the beginning of this puja. She thought that she would be fine as long as she had taken refuge and nothing would happen to her. She did not practice Buddha Dharma diligently. If taking refuge could resolve everything, then Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, who took refuge under His Holiness the Drikung Kyabgon Chetsang, would not have had to practice Buddha Dharma or work so hard to perform retreats. Actually, taking refuge only gives you the right to learn Buddha Dharma and to have the guru and Buddha Dharma as your support. You are still the ones who must practice. In order to change your karma, you must depend on your own practice.

It is not so easy to gain wisdom only by several days or years of learning Buddhism. Do not think that you will be able to immediately attain enlightenment, because you do not have such an innate capability. If you do not have lifetimes of practice, how will attaining enlightenment in this life be an easy task? Do not think that you can skip practice and let Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche perform the Phowa for you after you have taken refuge. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche will eventually pass away. You will have to wait until Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche attains Buddhahood and comes to your rescue. Nevertheless, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s vow is to not attain Buddhahood until all sentient beings have attained Buddhahood. As sentient beings take a very long time to attain Buddhahood, you cannot wait so long.

A vow is actually a promise to carry out something you are capable of achieving. Do not take any of the vows lightly. If you try to imitate the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas’ vows and fail to realize them, you will violate your promise. Therefore, the end of the Amitabha Sutra advises sentient beings to aspire to be reborn in the Pure Land because this is something you can definitely accomplish. As long as you express genuine repentance, abide by the Five Commandments and Ten Meritorious Acts, and cultivate your compassion and Bodhicitta, you will be able to be reborn in the Pure Land for sure. Do not take the vow to return to liberate sentient beings before attaining the level of a Buddha or Bodhisattva. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche was humble and said that he has not achieved a Bodhisattva’s accomplishments, but at least he has learned to take and realize such vows. A Bodhisattva does everything for the benefit of sentient beings without thinking for himself. That is how a Bodhisattva obtains his compassionate powers. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche was able to reduce swelling for a disciple who has cancer; this showed that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche is capable of helping sentient beings. Can you do this?

To take refuge is to follow a virtuous guru in learning Buddhism. A virtuous guru is a guru who has virtues but no merits. One with virtues can help liberate you from birth and death. The greatest difference between Buddhism and other religions is that merits are accumulated through Buddhist practices. Nonetheless, most Taiwanese who study Buddhism are accumulating virtues to be used in the upper realms, but they think they are accumulating merits. Virtues can only be used in the next life, not this life. Do not think that you are doing something virtuous when you make a donation of 500 NTD. When you see your neighbors come around to collect donations, you feel embarrassed about doing nothing so you give several hundred NTD. All of these things have nothing to do with learning Buddhism.

Do not think that you can attain achievements for a period of time by reciting sutras or making prostrations to the Buddha, or that you already have supernatural powers. If you do not rely on a virtuous guru and follow the guru’s teaching, and then your guru confirms your achievement, all of your “achievements” will be fake. Why? Buddhism teaches you to be liberated from the cycle of birth and death. Your knowledge and life experiences are accumulated in your previous lives and this life through greed, hatred, and ignorance. They are not related to Buddha Dharma. If you don’t have a guru who uses his own real experience of practicing Buddhism to guide you in cultivating, whatever you have done is merely accumulating virtues, which can be used in your next life and will fail to transform karma. Only virtues can transform the karma of this life.

Any action, word, or thought creates karmic forces. Not all karma is evil. There is virtuous as well as evil karma. Any driving force that makes us continue to fall into Samsara is karma. What you have done is merely accumulate minimal virtues, which cannot be used in this life and which fail to transform the karma from your previous lives or help you when you face obstacles. Only merits can transform your karma. When you seek refuge under a virtuous guru, the guru will temporarily halt your obstacles with his merits. Therefore, if you have not taken a vow to be reborn in the Pure Land and merely want to pray for a peaceful and healthy life, please refrain from coming, for you will waste the guru’s strength.

Do not think that as long as you have worshipped the Buddha, recited mantras, and practice the Dharma protectors you will be fine. You have also seen that the Buddhist temple in Yilang was crushed by the typhoon. The monks inside were even killed. And that Buddhist temple was very old, not new. According to Buddhist principles, this kind of accident should have never occurred in a place where there are Buddhist statues. Why did it happen? Was the Buddha ineffective? The Buddha would not be ineffective. Do not think that you are still young, still have time, and can slowly learn Buddhism. Inside the crushed temple was a deceased person who was only four years old. You do not believe that impermanence can arrive at any time! Do not believe that your child is still young, and that it is too early to teach him or her the concept of liberation from birth and death. People who think this way do not believe in impermanence. If a child understands the concepts of liberation from birth and death since youth, will he or she still be rebellious? People who do not listen to their parents, do not show filial piety. These people cannot be liberated from birth and death. Learning Buddhism makes children know that they should not dare to again commit evil deeds.

Why did this typhoon cause such a big disaster in East Taiwan? Buddhist scriptures have stated that there are mountain gods inside mountains, the mother of earth inside land, tree gods inside trees, and water gods inside water. We can live peacefully and work happily in this land because of the mother of earth’s protection. However, in recent years, humans continue to kill living beings, cut down trees, and destroy environments. Such actions have angered the mountain gods. Therefore, natural disasters are constantly generated. The smell and smoke from your barbecued meat makes the mountain gods and dragons that live inside mountains sick. Hence, they are angered by it. Especially bad Taiwanese people have barbecued meat during the Mid-Autumn Festival every year for years. Historically, barbecued meat was not a part of the Mid-Autumn Festival. In fact, from the environmental point of view, the damage to the environment from barbecued meat is very serious. The fumes that it emits have a very bad effect on Earth. Scientific research has shown Taiwan as the region where temperatures have risen the most throughout the whole world, because the air is polluted by the fumes of barbecued meat all day long.

Nowadays, there are even people who barbecue meat on days other than the Mid-Autumn Festival. Do not think that because you only watch them barbecue that it has nothing to do with you. If you attended and were a part of it, then you will have common karmic retribution; you will have collective karmic retribution from committing an evil deed together and collective karma from committing a virtuous deed together. You think that getting together to barbecue meat, sing, and dance constitutes a family reunion and happiness. If you think carefully, you only barbecue out of boredom. Are you so bored that you cannot find anything to do? There are still people who think their children have to eat more barbecue to attain good nutrition. They do not know that the meat that is used for barbecues is the worst kind. Would they use good quality meat for barbecues? Buddhist scriptures state that if you eat half a kilo of meat, then you have to repay a half of kilo to it. You thought that you did not have to repay it when you ate meat. If you have barbecued in this life, you will definitely have an accident. You should came out to make repentance! Recently, a female disciple fell and was injured in a traffic accident. She should have been unable to move, but Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s blessings made her able to sit in a wheelchair. When this disciple sought an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, she still did not know what she had done wrong and thought it was caused by her own carelessness. She did not know she had broken a precept by cooking meat for others to eat after taking refuge. That was the real cause of her accident. However, she still did not know that she should repent.

None of you believe in the principle of cause and effect. When others asked you if you believed in Buddhism, all of you answered “yes.” When others asked you if you believed in the principle of cause and effect, you also answered “yes.” However, you still ate and killed living beings all day wherever you traveled. During the typhoon, why did the road in Suao collapse? It was because when people travel, they like to go to Suao to eat seafood and then to Hualian for sightseeing. This behavior angered the mountain gods. Why did others let you construct this road and use this road to kill sentient beings? Therefore, the road just collapsed. People who have done these kinds of things, sightseeing and eating whereever they go, should all come out to make repentance.

Do not think that you should enjoy life because you are young. You may claim that you believe in the law of cause and effect, yet in the meantime you search for excuses and say that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche doesn’t forbid you from doing these enjoyable things. What you don’t know is that if you indulge yourselves now and use up your virtues, you will suffer from all kinds of medical treatments when you become old and you won’t be able to go anywhere. When you are young, it doesn’t mean that you have a long future. You don’t know when death will come to you. Nowadays many children die at very young ages. Thus, you must grasp the time to learn Buddhism. You like to go window shopping all day long. But even when buying things, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche does not stroll on the streets or go window shopping. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche only buys something when there is a need, and he completes the purchase quickly and decisively. Some women love to go shopping; this is an indication of heavy desire. Though they may not necessarily buy something, they still want to go to look or touch things to feel happy. This is indulging one’s greed. Some people want to buy something. They say that they have wanted to buy it since they were in college. Because they have waited until now, it is certainly okay for them to buy it. This act is also only to fulfill desires. When Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche was young, though he had not learned Buddhism, he would not wasted his time like that. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche used all his time to ponder how to accumulate his knowledge and life experience for future needs.

Is it true that life is about nothing but growing up, working, getting married, and raising children? If so, human beings are actually no different than animals. After your children grow up and have their own families, you wish to see your grandchildren grow up. But you just can’t make up your mind to learn Buddhism. Don’t think that because you are still young, you don’t have to vow to be liberated from the cycle of Samsara. Nor should you want to have more fun before you start to learn Buddhism. If you indulge yourself in this way, the guru will not pay attention to you. In the meantime, the blessing of the gurus will also stop.

There was a disciple who told Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, after he had helped him several times, that due to factors at home, he could not come to learn Buddhism. A female disciple said that due to family reasons she also could not come again. Her leg had almost broken, but it was cured now. This female disciple was not married and had no boyfriend. What kind of family excuse did she have? They simply took advantage of the guru, Buddhas, and Bodhisattvas, and had never determined to practice Buddhism. Yesterday, a believer came to seek an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. He said that he was ill, but the doctors could not find the cause. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche asked him to become a vegetarian. Upon hearing this, the believer rolled his eyes twice and immediately left. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche sighed and said that when you go see a doctor, for the sake of your health, you must follow the doctor’s instruction and take the prescribed medicine. Therefore, the Buddhist scriptures state that it is difficult to help and liberate sentient beings!

Those who died in this typhoon disaster died at the wrong time. Everyone is fatefully afflicted during a certain hour, day, month, or year. Changes in the universe and the planets will affect the earth’s crust and cause climate change and natural disasters. His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche predicted in 2009 that there would be severe floods in 2010 and that rain would pour heavily. Thereby, you were reminded to keep away from mountains and water. Scientists indeed have observed that there have been many changes in the stars of the universe. How can great practitioners such as Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche foresee future events? It is because Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has firm faith in the law of cause and effect. You people don’t.

Many of you have failed to show repentance even with your daily evil deeds. You think that your evil conduct is not regulated by the laws so you think that you make no mistakes. In fact, such people do not understand that laws are made for local needs and are specific regulations for a certain area. On the other hand, the law of cause and effect can be applied everywhere in the universe. Some people might try to excuse their responsibilities by saying that they have no knowledge of such matters. Nevertheless, why didn’t Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche commit the same mistakes, since he had never heard about them?

After practicing Buddhism, some people seem to have a longer lifespan. Practicing Buddhism doesn’t give you a longer lifespan. You originally should have had a long life, and since you practice Buddhism and no longer do evil deeds, your original lifespan is revealed. Whenever you take a bite of meat and kill sentient beings, your lifespan will always be reduced. The Buddhas can’t prolong your lifespan. Do not think that doing the following is evidence of Buddhist achievement: becoming a vegetarian, taking refuge, attending pujas, reciting sutras, and finding that your illness has improved. The Buddhas can’t extend your lifespan. Doing virtuous deeds can’t either. Only if you have done a tremendous amount of virtuous deeds is it possible to prolong your life. Being rich or poor is not relevant to whether or not you have learned Buddhism. Your wealth is determined by the virtues you accumulated in past lifetimes. It is not related to whether or not you learn Buddhism.

On October 3, during the Great Indiscriminate Amitabha Puja for Transferring Consciousness, some believers put some foreign currency into the box as an offering to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. As you know, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche donates the entire offering after the Great Puja. How could Rinpoche exchange the foreign currency? This is not the correct mind of making an offering, but just giving unnecessary stuff to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. Previously, there were some people who gave coupons for wine and karaoke as an offering. Moreover, some people gave receipts as an offering, thinking that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has a foundation that verifies the number on the invoice to win the lottery. It takes lots of manpower to verify the number of invoices. Actually Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche does not have this kind of manpower. How could Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, who is 63 years old, verify numbers on invoices? A real offering is to provide your most cherished article rather than giving something you have already thrown away and will not use or want anymore. This attitude has nothing to do with making any offering.

Yesterday, a disciple made an offering because his father died. He beseeched Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche to liberate his father through performing the Phowa. Actually, those who are able to obtain the help of the Phowa need to have great virtues rather than merely beseech. In Tibet, if someone is dying, family members traditionally prepare the most valuable article to make offerings and invite the Rinpoche from the Buddhist temple to stay at their home for several days so that they can have the opportunity to make offerings to him everyday. Then, the Rinpoche will practice the Dharma for the dying person everyday in order to let him or her possess sufficient virtuous conditions and virtues to obtain the help of the Phowa. When the dying person passes away, he or she will have the virtuous conditions to be helped with the Phowa, which is performed by the Rinpoche. After perfect completion of the Phowa, the family members will again make offerings to the Rinpoche with their most valuable articles before they accompany him back to the Buddhist temple.

Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has saved you many times. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, with his cultivation and attainment, does not need you to plead with him to go this way or that, as he does not need to perform the Phowa by the side of the deceased. Even when Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche was in India, he successfully performed the Phowa for the deceased in Taiwan, with the auspicious sign of a round hole on the crown of the head. When the disciple beseeched for transferring his father’s consciousness, he never mentioned that his father emigrated from Mainland China. However, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche found that his father’s consciousness had already returned to his homeland in Mainland China. It was, however, too late to accumulate virtues for his father to obtain the help of the Phowa because the disciple did not regularly make offerings before. He thought about and made offerings only after his father had passed away. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche does not know which disciple is native Taiwanese or a mainlander. In fact, among the current generation, there is no discrimination between mainlanders and native Taiwanese. People are all mixed blood. Hence, there is no need to distinguish.

You all have the same problem: Only when your parents pass away, will you start to think if there is anything to make an offering. If you don’t listen to the guru’s teachings, the blessings of the guru will be disconnected. Even when Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche discovers that the disciples are not listening to the guru’s teachings, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, like a father who never gives up on his children, tries his best to create opportunities for the disciples to accumulate virtuous conditions and virtues. This is just like those disciples who shared their story: They usually made offerings with their leftovers to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. As the disciple was not willing to make offerings, his late father lacked virtues, and Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche could not perform the Phowa for him. In order to help the father accumulate virtues to obtain the help of the Phowa, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche instructed the disciple to do full prostrations at the venue.

The female disciple with breast cancer who made a public confession did not really repent. She rejoiced that, by taking refuge under the powerful guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, her suffering and pain related to cancer could be released by Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s blessing. Her killing karma was so heavy that even falling into the eighteenth hell more than one hundred times was not excessive. And she still didn’t understand that she needed to repent! The Buddhas, Bodhisattvas, and the guru gave her time, no matter if it was long or short. This was not to let her enjoy life, but to let her have the opportunities to cultivate Buddhism, do prostrations to the Buddha, and accumulate virtues in order to obtain help of the Phowa to be reborn in the Pure Land. Her hands were no longer painful and her swelling was reduced after Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche bestowed blessings on her. This was because Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche eliminated her karmic obstacles. The sentient beings in the cancer cells of her body prevented her from learning Buddhism for a while, but she relied on herself to carry it out.

If one could be reborn merely by reciting Amitabha Buddha’s name at the moment of death, the Amitabha Sutra, Sukhavativyuha Sutra, and Vipasyana Sukhavativyuha Sutra would not have mentioned the conditions for being reborn in the Pure Land. The latter part of the Amitabha Sutra advises sentient beings to make a vow to be reborn in the Pure Land, because it is something you can surely attain. According to the Amitabha Sutra, it’s very difficult for people in the Evil World of Five Turbidities to believe that the Dharma method of Amitabha Buddha can liberate them from the cycle of birth and death. It is not saying that people do not believe in Amitabha Buddha, but that people do not believe they can be reborn in the Pure Land merely through the Dharma method. You should not improperly think that merely mantra recitations or prostrations to the Buddhas can liberate sentient beings. Nor is it proper to think that reciting for the dead can help them be reborn in the Pure Land. What you have been doing is accumulating virtues. But it is merits and virtues that help you be reborn in the Pure Land. It is like when you want to travel somewhere, you need money to buy tickets. You try to find someone to help you, but it depends on whether or not this person has money to buy the tickets for you. Even if the person has money, it still depends on whether or not he or she would like to do it for you. The function of the recitation assistance group is to point out the direction of Amitabha Buddha’s Pure Land. However, the group can’t help the deceased person get there. The Vajrayana practitioners who perform the Phowa are like the person who has money and is always able to help the deceased buy tickets and personally bring them to the Pure Land. Practitioners who are able to liberate the deceased by performing the Phowa are those who believe in the law of cause and effect. Those who don’t believe in this law are not able to do it.

Today, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche is going to bestow on you the teachings of Master Gampopa. You can memorize Master Gampopa’s teachings by using mnemonic devices. Although you may not be able to comprehend or realize the teachings, when you attain the nature of the mind, you will realize the state that has been taught today. Since you have not attained that state, you are not able to comprehend it, no matter how many explanations are given.

According to Master Gampopa’s teachings, “The nature of our mind is neither non-existence nor nothingness, non-continuity nor brokenness. It is also not the middle way far away from the extremes of non-existence and nothingness, non-continuity and brokenness.” The “mind,” here, does not refer to the heart, love, or ambition. Instead, it refers to the nature of every phenomenon of the universe. This is a practice specific to Buddhism. The mind has not been mentioned in any human culture on Earth. The mind has no shape or weight, nor is it visible or measurable. The mind cannot be investigated with the methods of inference or philosophy. The teachings given to you are still theories rather than methods. Therefore, you don’t need to meditate at home with the hope to clearly see your mind. It will not take effect.

In the Buddhist scriptures and the Ratnakuta Sutra, Buddha Sakyamuni discussed the mind a great deal. Master Gampopa condensed the content about the nature of the mind in the sutras into the following sentences: the mind is neither non-existence nor nothingness, non-continuity nor brokenness. It is not the middle way far away from the two extremes. As mentioned in the Buddhist scriptures and Mahaprajnaparamita Sutra, Buddha Sakyamuni spent twelve years explaining the mind. After Buddha Sakyamuni passed away, people argued over the theories of existence and non-existence until Bodhisattva Nagarjuna composed the Knowledge of the Middle Way, according to the Ratnakuta Sutra bestowed by Buddha Sakyamuni. Commentaries are theories rather than practice methods. The middle way is not to stand in the middle without looking at the two sides, front or back, up or down. The term “middle” refers to an attitude of non-prejudice and non-attachment, not attaching to any worldly phenomena, for everything is cause and effect. To visualize is not to see things with eyes, but to see all the phenomena in the universe with prajna and wisdom, rather than the naked eyes, consciousness, or the experience of ordinary people. The middle way is saying that everything has its own form, but is essentially empty. Being empty means that everything in the universe is created with the composite of cause and condition. Nothing is unchangeable or able to exist eternally. Everything is empty in essence. The middle way is also referred to as Madhyamaka.

“Existence” refers to attachment to the existence, the perpetual existence of anything or matter. However, this does not mean that nothing exists, and that we don’t need anything. This kind of thinking is attaching to emptiness, idle emptiness. The Diamond Sutra states that if one clings to the thought of seeing things, he or she will have evil views. However, this doesn’t mean that we should see everything as fake. Nowadays, believers are constantly taught to become empty when they learn Buddhism. However, as one still has a heartbeat, breath, and the feeling of hunger, how can one be empty? Such a saying is idle emptiness. Being empty does not mean having nothing. However, everything in the universe rises and falls along with its cause and condition. Everything is impermanent and constantly changing. The only thing that doesn’t change is the nature of the mind. Don’t think that “self” is important. The Buddha continuously told us that “self” does not exist. The “self” you think you have is nothing but a body of karmic retribution with your cause and effect. Everything that happens to you is a manifestation of karmic forces. When all the karmic retributions have manifested, you will then leave the world.

Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has seen a scientific report written in English on scientists’ findings about the composition of a human body. They subtracted elements like iron, calcium, and zinc from the body, and measured the weight of the rest. The result showed minimal weight. Scientists have also found that every being is actually composed of the same elements. While some have more iron, others have more calcium. Just as the Buddhist scriptures say, the Buddha and sentient beings are essentially non-differential and equal. Because of that, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche is able to perform the Phowa for sentient beings. During the practice of the Phowa, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, whose mind is essentially the same as the deceased, is able to give sentient beings his own virtues and help them relieve their attachments so they can be reborn in the Pure Land. This is the idea of “great compassion when sharing the same essence” as expounded in the Buddhist sutras.

Three thousand years ago, in the Buddha’s era, there were no scientific instruments such as microscopes. However, the Ratnakuta Sutra stated that there are billions of bacteria that exist in human intestinal tracts, and worms that live in one’s eyes, eyebrows, eyelashes, and neck. In ancient times, the term “bacteria” did not exist. How did the Buddha know about it? This is because the Buddha based his view on wisdom. Now scientists have proved that parasites live in the hair follicles of the skin. No matter how hard you try to clean these parts, they will not be cleaned out. The more water and soap you use, the more the bacteria breed. A disciple who works as a doctor confirmed that there are billions of probiotics in the human digestion system including the mouth and nose. Without their help, humans cannot digest food so that their stomach can absorb the nutrients. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche asked, “Why did Buddha Sakyamuni explain such things? They are not meaningless. Everything said by the Buddha is helpful to our learning of Buddhism. He would not mention meaningless matters.”

Don’t think that you are learning Buddhism and doing prostrations to the Buddhas. Myriads of bacteria live together with us. In order to help these sentient beings, you should help the bacteria in your body. Although bacteria are not considered complete life forms in the scientific perspective, from the Buddhist perspective, any sentient beings or non-sentient beings in the Six Realms, including a rock, has the Buddha’s nature, so we should liberate and benefit them. Therefore, how can this body be ours if there are so many sentient beings in our bodies? Why would Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche advise the female disciple with cancer to aspire to be reborn in the Pure Land? When she aspires to do so, the sentient beings in her body will know if she is being sincere. Then, they will give her time to learn the Buddhist teachings. When she achieves accomplishments in practice, the sentient beings in her body can benefit from it too. If a practitioner attains liberation from Samsara, the sentient beings in his or her body will be liberated too. Therefore, do not be selfish anymore. We should learn the Buddhist teachings in order to benefit the innumerable sentient beings in our bodies. From this it can be seen that Buddhism is in fact the most advanced technology and more scientific than science!

A female believer rested one leg on the other during the puja. Seeing this, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche immediately corrected her. He also said that usually the people who are singled out for such behavior do not come to attend pujas anymore. This believer thought that she came to listen to a lecture, something that had no relation to her. She failed to revere the Three Jewels. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, at his advanced age, sat cross-legged during the whole puja, imparting Buddhist teachings to the attendees without charge. She should respect him based on that. If Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche said that she could get money for sitting upright, she would not have sat like that. This shows that she wasn’t focused. One who is attentive would not notice the soreness in his or her legs and try to move them.

On October 3, 2010, during the Grand Puja, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche sprinkled nectar for more than half an hour. This should have been impossible for Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche due to his severe scoliosis, cervical spine dislocation, and no cartilage in his right shoulder. If you had been Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, you would have had difficulty raising your arm after sprinkling for five minutes. How was Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche able to do it? It was because Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had attained the state of “great compassion based on sameness in essence” and broken the notion of sentient beings so that he did not differentiate between himself and sentient beings and so he could focus on sentient beings’ sufferings. When seeing sentient beings’ suffering, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche suffered more than the sentient beings themselves. When you can focus on sentient beings’ sufferings, your body can then endure a little bit of pain. How are those who cannot endure a little bit of pain able to cultivate mercy and compassion? A doctor of the Glorious Jewel Chinese Medicine Clinic, who is also a disciple, gave Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche a massage after the Grand Puja, but only for a minute. If an ordinary person had done what Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche did, he would have lost the ability to raise his arm for at least three to five days. Also, his arm could have become inflamed and prevented him from moving for a whole week. However, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche was able to use chopsticks to pick up food merely an hour after the puja. The reason why Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche was able to recover so soon lay in his strength of concentration and compassion. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has enlightened people many times that compassion is the greatest power in the whole universe.

During the latest typhoon disaster, a Taiwanese tourist who had been stranded expressed anger toward rescue workers because they saved passengers from Mainland China before those from Taiwan during the rescue mission. Besides the Buddhist teachings, even Confucius talked about how one should sacrifice oneself for others’ benefit. Even though the Taiwanese passenger had been rescued, he still felt angry. Such an attitude is not very good. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche is not saying this because he is biased towards those from Mainland China, but to point out that even though Taiwanese people with such a mindset should not be described as terrible, they really have become more and more selfish. Why? Many people have lost compassion that they initially had as human beings because many politicians keep making distinctions between Taiwan and Mainland China. From this incident you learn that you should exert great caution when you speak, for you will never know what impact your words may have upon others.

Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche does not speak for or support any particular political parties, and he only sees causes and effects of the course of events. Those who speak sweetly aren’t always trustworthy. We should support anyone who has the heart to serve the public and benefit society regardless of his or her political identity. On the contrary, we should not vote for those who merely criticize and fail to benefit society, regardless of which political party they belong to.

There is nothing accidental in the world. All things that have happened to you were done by yourself. Why do some people die together in the same car? They committed some evil deeds together in past lives or this life, so they shared a common evil karmic retribution. If you have not committed any evil deeds, or recognized or praised others’ evil actions—even if you were in a disaster, you will not be involved in such evil karma. That is why the Buddha taught us to rejoice. Rejoicing does not mean asking a Buddhist master how much money to offer. The master will reply, “Rejoice!” This phrase is misused by Buddhist masters when people ask them how much money is a proper offering. Making a proper amount of offering as one would like to is not rejoicing. Rejoicing really refers to praising others and their behaviors in your mind when they have done some virtuous deeds.

Buddhist scriptures mention a “Heaven of the Thirty-three.” This does not mean that there are thirty-three levels in the Heaven Realm. It means the Heaven of the Thirty-three Celestials. Long ago, a person found thirty-two people to help him build Buddhist temples and stupas. Because these thirty-three people shared this virtuous common karma, they were later reborn together in the Heaven Realm. The power of rejoicing is very great. In contrast, the effect of encouraging evil deeds is extremely serious as well. Do not think the act of encouraging evil deeds is only valid when you have actually committed evil deeds together. Not long ago, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche transferred the consciousness of a disciple’s father and found that there was a pig behind her father. However, her father had not killed a pig. As it turned out, her father had watched someone kill a big pig and applauded their deed. This had been an act of encouraging and following evil deeds and would lead to the karmic retribution of a killing deed.

Master Gampopa taught people that the nature of the mind is continuous. It can be broken but not ruined, cut off but not broken, changed but not transformed, and suspended but not stopped. According to you, the teaching that Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche bestowed today on the nature of mind was very deep and profound. Nevertheless, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche still must give the teaching. When you are able to attain enlightenment through practices in the future, these words will work at critical moments, and enable you to realize the effect of the mind.

Some people say that they have attained achievement and seen Buddhas and Bodhisattvas appearing in front of them. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche warned people to not always highlight the differences between them and others. If they tell others too many things, others may think that they are crazy and send them to the hospital. Once they are in the hospital, they will suffer and be treated with electrotherapy. Those who have been treated with electrotherapy are finished in this life and will be finished in the next life as well. The Diamond Sutra states that imploring to hear sounds from the Buddha with or to see the Buddha’s physical form are all false views and heresy.

Some people think that learning Buddhism can help them change personalities or calm down. In fact, if you want to change your personality or be calm, you can find psychiatrists and do not need to learn Buddha Dharma. Buddha Dharma does not say that. Whether you have a good or bad personality has to do with education within the family and cultivation. It also is related to your desires for greed, hatred, or ignorance. Some people see psychiatrists when they encounter something. They think that it will really help them. A disciple who has been a doctor for years said that he is uncertain if seeing psychiatrists really helps. But what is sure is that human’s thoughts are far from heaven’s thoughts, and heaven’s thoughts are far from Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s thoughts. Spending money to see a psychiatrist is not like taking money to offer to a virtuous guru.

All phenomena in the world arise and cease due to causes and conditions. They are not eternal but constantly change, except for the mind, which is self-established and not based on the law of cause and condition. Everything in the universe is formed by causes and conditions. All phenomena are conditioned existences and not self-established. Why can’t you feel the presence of the mind now? It is because your mind has been obscured by greed, hatred, and ignorance. Therefore, you have to practice Buddha Dharma to reveal your mind.

Master Gampopa enlightened, “Because at all times, the nature of the mind always comes from or goes nowhere but continues for three kinds of times, it is called “cut off but not broken.” How can the nature of the mind be “cut off but not broken?” Because the heart has no idea of time, the consciousness discriminates between past, present and future. “Abiding in the notions of lifespan,” as depicted in Diamond Sutra, means that the nature of the mind is continuous and without temporal or spatial discrimination. But it does not mean that you do not need to have a sense of time or do things on time. Time, here, means that that there is no difference between past, present, and future, but that they happen at the same time. There is differentiation because of discrimination made by human beings’ mind. Time is actually made up. Scientists have proven that there is no time in outer space. On a planet, time exists because of the rotation of the planets. And the rotation and orbital period of each planet is different. If you cannot see the sunrise, sunset, or the changes of the four seasons in outer space, do you still feel time? For example, when you see Earth from outer space, you can see the sun rise and set on Earth at the same time. But on Earth, the change of day and night can only be seen in twenty-four hours. Although we use the term “light-year” to describe the distance between planets, a light-year is discriminated by human beings.

Although Buddha Dharma teaches that there are Buddhas of the three eras as well as past, present, and future. Time actually does not exist for Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. They do not discriminate between present, past, or future. There is no past or future, only present. Therefore, how can many of your past or future things be known? It is because the minds of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas are immovable. What moves or discriminates is your mind. Why can Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche know about your issues? This is also because the mind is immovable. Why can practitioners of the Tantra Vehicle see your past, present, and future? It is not because they have supernatural cognition, but because they have achieved the level of Reward body and Dharma body, and have entered the level of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. Supernatural cognition is different than wisdom. It refers to the ability of transforming, whereas wisdom is the power of seeing nature. One can observe every truth in the universe by wisdom. How can the Buddha know things about thousands of lives of beings in the past, present, or future? It is because when practicing to the level of opening wisdom, one can understand various phenomena in the universe. But if you depend on the method of discussion, the more you discuss the more confused you will become. It is even more difficult to understand the nature of the mind.

Master Gampopa enlightened, “That is also because the nature of the mind is not the product of conditional coincidence. Instead, it naturally exists from origin, beginning, and initiation, so it is called ‘broken but not ruined.’ Meanwhile, because the nature of the mind is not formed as shapes or colors, it becomes neither a kind or appearance, so it is called ‘suspended but not stopped!’”

The nature of the mind can be “suspended but not stopped.” This is just like how Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche is able to break through time and space. Even when he was in India, he still was able to perform the Phowa for a deceased person who was 2,000 kilometers away in Taiwan, and help him to have a clear round hole on the crown of his head. After Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche successfully completed the Dharma in India, the perfect and auspicious sign of the Phowa immediately appeared on the deceased in Taiwan. This is attaining the conditions of “abiding in the notions of lifespan,” as mentioned in the Diamond Sutra. How can Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche know matters of the deceased? It is because when Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche performs the Phowa for beings, he has no self. Self and beings are completely the same. That is “abiding in the notions of sentient beings.” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche does not distinguish between himself and the deceased. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s mind is pure, and the deceased’s heart is also pure but with karma attached to it. Both are unity, instead of distinguishing self and others. That is “great compassion based on sameness in essence.” Therefore, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche can give his virtues to the deceased, and he has the ability to transfer their consciousness and benefit them. How can Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche bestow blessings upon you to eliminate your suffering or swelling? It is because Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has clarified and understood the function of the mind, practiced to have the power of a clear mind, and been able to have some ability of the mind and help beings with the power of seeing nature.

Actually, the power of the mind is huge. For example, the minds of His Holiness the Drikung Kyabgon Chetsang and Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, the guru and his disciple, are very close. Sometimes, when Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche thinks about His Holiness the Drikung Kyabgon Chetsang, His Holiness the Drikung Kyabgon Chetsang calls to ask, “Are you looking for me?” When His Holiness thinks about Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, he will call His Holiness. Before you have attained the realization of the mind, knowing the power of mental enlightenment, you must rely on your guru’s blessings and teachings in order to learn Buddhist cultivation. In the age of Master Jigten Sumgon, there were 12,000 practitioners who were able to fly from one place to another because they had developed the power of mental enlightenment. It is not a fairy tale; as long as you can develop the power of mental enlightenment, you can achieve it for sure.

Not long ago, a disciple’s father passed away. This man had great virtues to be reborn in the Pure Land by obtaining the Phowa performed by Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. When Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche performed the Phowa, she saw Lü Dongbin leading her father by the hand to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche thought that the disciple’s father had practiced Taoism in his life. Later on, it was confirmed that when the deceased was a child, he was adopted as a son by Lü Dongbin. Lü Dongbin, who cultivated to the high level of Luojin spirit in Taoism,  began cultivating Buddhism after he passed away. However, he was not able to transfer one’s consciousness. That is why his father was adopted as a son by Lü Dongbin. Lü Dongbin had to protect and take him to meet Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche because Lü Dongbin was unable to transfer his father’s consciousness.

Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche asked the attendees if they were tired. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche asked a disciple whether or not he could continue listening to the enlightenment. This disciple replied that he was not tired and could continue to listen to the teachings bestowed by Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. He also mentioned that he learned at other Buddhist centers before taking refuge under Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, but the content of the teachings bestowed by Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche was more splendid, because Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche enlightens with true practice experience.

Then, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche continued to give enlightenment. A virtuous guru teaches his disciples with his practice experiences, rather than with external verbal expression or language. The Buddhist teachings do not speak of “understanding” but “realization.” Many learners of Exoteric Buddhism and Tibetan Buddhism have heard the phrase “cause of condition is empty in nature.” Unless one has true realization, it is difficult to explain this term with language. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche realized that the cause of condition is empty in nature by accidentally kicking a chair during a retreat. In ancient times, practitioners were able to clarify their minds and see their nature when they heard glass breaking or water dripping. The noble Mahakasyapa attained realizations upon seeing the Buddha holding a flower. It seems simple. However, you must practice a long time before you can achieve such an accomplishment as seeing your nature.

In the whole universe, human beings are the only creatures who have to rely on hearing to receive messages and using language to communicate. Therefore, language is needed to propagate Buddha Dharma. But must language be used? It is not necessarily the case. The attainment of practice cannot be explained by language. One can only realize and know it clearly when they have a personal experience. Like the water, only by drinking can one can tell whether or not it is cold. So far, you have only learned this concept from language and texts without true practice and experience. Therefore, the Buddha sutras have stated that the Buddha said that it cannot be spoken, not because something cannot be revealed. Instead, it means that Buddha Dharma is beyond words and cannot be expressed by any words. It means that you should not be clinging to the meanings of Dharma texts. You should rely on the meaning, instead of words, as well the Dharma or truth itself, instead of some human beings. The enlightenment of Buddha Dharma that you watch or listen to on television is just the literal explanation, instead of true practice methods. True practice requires a guru with merits and virtues who has practice experience. This is like a chef. If the chef is not proficient in cooking, how can the chef teach you how to cook delicious dishes? If you learn Buddha Dharma from a guru with merits and virtues who has practice experience and teaches you to utilitze the body—which is initially useless, and if you listen and follow the Buddha’s teaching to do things, you can leave the suffering ocean of Samsara and be liberated from life and death. Learning Buddhism is not something that takes just one or two days, nor one or two decades. It takes a very long time to edify and learn.

How could Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche have these small achievements in Dharma practice in this life? It is simply because Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has always, out of a pure mind and having none of his own thoughts, followed the teachings and guidance of His Holiness the Drikung Kyabgon Chetsang. Buddhism is inaction. Inaction doesn’t mean doing nothing at all, but it means that Buddhism exceeds your consciousness and experience. Your thoughts are all artificially produced– with certain desire. If you practice Buddha Dharma in accordance with your own thoughts, it will not work out. The difficulty of learning Buddhism is not following the teachings. Learning Buddhism also is very simple because all you must do is follow the teachings. Therefore, a virtuous guru is the one who people rely upon. Don’t think that because Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche isn’t giving enlightenment from the Dharma throne you don’t have to follow the teachings. According to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, every single word is Buddha Dharma because it is not for his own benefit. If you don’t listen to the teachings, you will not have the power of blessings.

As Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche previously enlightened, blessings from the guru and Bodhisattvas are a steady stream. But it is like the plug of an electrical device; if you disconnect the plug, how can the power be transmitted to you? Many people feel that their daily life becomes smoother after a certain period of time. Such benefits are because your guru’s blessing has formed a net of protection around you so that your karmic debtors and creditors will not come to you and so that you will have time to learn Buddhism and repay your karmic debts. This is protection from the guru. After people attend pujas for a period of time, many things will be smooth. They will think that it is due to their own good cultivation. In fact, it’s not true. If the Buddha light does not shine upon us or if there is no protection from the Bodhisattvas, we will not be able to live well and may encounter troubles at any time.

Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche gave an example. Once when His Holiness the Drikung Kyabgon Chetsang adjusted the job responsibilities of two Khenpos, the two Khenpos disagreed with the adjustment, and asked His Holiness for a readjustment. This proves that they do not accept His Holiness’s instructions, and because of this, they cut off their blessings. After this, one of Khenpos became handicapped while the other passed away. This was not because His Holiness the Drikung Kyabgon Chetsang punished them. This has no relation to His Holiness the Drikung Kyabgon Chetsang. The truth is that they did not revere His Holiness the Drikung Kyabgon Chetsang, the Bodhisattvas, and Buddha Dharma, but rather they doubted and their own cause and condition, as well as karma, appeared.

The largest power of the universe lies in the mind of compassion. If one can realize the mind, Buddha Dharma will be like your two hands that you can use freely. Don’t think that you can meditate alone at home, that you can see your own heart, or that you can only probably see ghosts that way. In fact, there is no such special physical constitution that allows you to see the Buddha or ghosts. Actually, every single person possesses a different physical constitution. For example, the food and lifestyle of the people of Hong Kong and Taiwan differ, so their physical constitution also differs. Northern Taiwan also differs from southern Taiwan. Furthermore, it is not a good thing if you see ghosts all day long. Some ghosts are good looking while others are not. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche once saw a ghost whose entire body was covered with grass. The ghost was more than two hundred years old and its tomb had become desolate and covered with grass. Similarly, if the tomb had been covered with stones, the ghost’s body would have been covered with stones. According to Buddhist teachings, cremation would prevent such problems.

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Updated on November 23, 2011