His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche’s Puja Teachings – October 7, 2012

Before the puja, a female disciple shared with the assembly how His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche had helped her mother.

Her mother is 73 years old this year (2012). She received an orthopedic examination in late June because of the pain in her lower back and right leg. X-ray indicated that the pains were caused by lumbar bone spurs and osteoporosis. Her mother did not heed the doctor’s advice about undergoing surgery to relieve compression of the spinal nerves and only took some medicines home. After that, she fell twice at home due to lack of strength in her right leg, which worsened her lumbar conditions and eventually it became difficult even to walk around. On July 2, she took her mother back to hospital to wait for surgery.

Since the female disciple and her daughter converted to Buddhism in August 2004, her mother had also become a vegetarian and attended the annual Great Indiscriminate Amitabha Puja for Transferring Consciousness and Grand Memorial Puja in Honor of Drikung Kagyu Lord Jigten Sumgon every year. Although her mother always supported her and her daughter to learn Buddhism with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche and was never an obstacle to them, she was unwilling to seek an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche at the Buddhist Center. Her mother had diabetes and heart disease which, coupled with her old age, made anesthesia highly risky. She gave her mother a nectar pill to take immediately after her hospitalization and gave her another one before the date of surgery, praying that her mother would have the blessings of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. As her mother had four lumbar fractures, the surgery would be more complicated and could take up to six hours, so the principal surgeon had arranged for the help of another surgeon specializing in lumbar surgery. The day before surgery, it suddenly occurred to her that her mother had been taking an anticoagulant which should have been discontinued a week before surgery; otherwise it would increase the risk of unstoppable bleeding. However, as the surgery date was set, she eventually agreed with the surgeon to perform surgery for her mother as scheduled.

Her mother was sent to operating room at 10am on July 6. It was not until 6pm that the anesthesiologist told her to enter the recovery room to accompany her mother. She was told that although the amount of blood loss was a little more than usual, the surgery went quite smoothly. The anesthesiologist, seeing that her mother’s conditions were quite stable, had her extubated. After that, everything from oxygen saturation to breathing condition was fine. No one expected that just ten minutes after that, her mother suddenly stopped breathing, with her lips turning purple due to lack of oxygen. At this critical moment, the anesthesiologist happened to see it and immediately reintubated her mother. He explained that the breathing inhibition might be due to her mother’s old age and delayed drug metabolism caused by her diabetes. He asked her to call her mother beside her, helping her to regain consciousness sooner. At her calling, her mother opened her eyes and, ten minutes later, resumed normal breathing. The anesthesiologist then had her extubated again.

The female disciple was a nurse herself and knew well the procedures in the operating room and recovery room. Normally, patients were transferred from recovery room to the ward after they resumed normal breathing and were extubated. Then the anesthesiologist and nurses would go to the nursing station to take care of the patients’ transfer, and therefore they usually would not stay with the patients. She and many other nurses at the hospital thought it was incredible that when her mother suddenly stopped breathing, the anesthesiologist happened to be around and immediately had her mother reintubated. She also knew that the risk of reintubation could have increased the possibility of a vegetative state for her mother. In addition, her mother did not have the sequela of hypoxia.

Her mother stayed in ICU for another two days for observation after she was extubated and she recovered amazingly well. She passed gas and began to eat the day after surgery. Moreover, she was able to get out of bed and stand up on her own the day after she was transferred from ICU to the ward. On the fifth day, her mother was already practicing walking. Initially, after surgery, her mother simply had no strength in her right leg, and it should have been difficult for her even to stand up. But she managed to walk to the door of the ward using a mobility aid, which amazed even the doctors.

The female disciple gave her mother another nectar pill to take after she was transferred to the ward, and told her what happened to her in the recovery room, adding that if not for the blessings of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, her recovery would not have been so quick. Then her mother suddenly said to her that after leaving hospital, she would seek an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche to express her thanks and her wish to learn Buddhism with the guru. “During surgery, I felt very uncomfortable and was trying very hard to wake up but could not,” said her mother. “Then suddenly I saw Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche wearing a Dharma robe and a Dharma hat floating in the air and looking at me. I implored Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche to help me. When I opened my eyes, I saw you there. It was Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche who saved me. So I must go and express my thanks to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche!”

After hearing her mother through, the female disciple came to know that when her mother was experiencing the sudden breathing difficulty, her mother saw Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche blessing her. The female disciple was grateful to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for blessing her mother throughout the surgery and thus giving her the opportunity to learn Buddhism. On July 21, the first Saturday after her mother leaving hospital, she immediately took her mother to seek an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. The first sight of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche filled her mother’s eyes with tears of joy. She reported what happened to her mother after surgery. Then her mother implored to take refuge with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, who compassionately agreed and accepted her offerings, giving her mother the opportunity to accumulate blessed rewards. The female disciple expressed her gratitude to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche who not only had thoughtful concerns for his disciples but also took care of their family members. Although her mother had never sought an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche before the surgery, nonetheless she was blessed and helped compassionately. On September 23, her mother, with happiness evident in her face, finally took refuge with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.

The female disciple was deeply grateful to the boundless compassion of the guru and determined to learn Buddhism diligently, rectify her bad conduct, and repay the benevolence of the guru, the Buddhas, the Bodhisattvas, her parents, and all sentient beings.

Then another female disciple also shared the story of how His eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche helped her nephew, her deceased grandma, her mother and herself.

At 11pm on August 16 this year (2012), the 18-year-old son of her cousin had a traffic accident where his motorcycle collided with a passenger car. After the accident, he was sent to ICU. In the first week, his Glasgow Coma Score was swinging between 3 and 5. When the female disciple visited her nephew, she said to the boy, “Since it has happened, you must face it bravely and have neither fear nor resentment,” visualizing Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche giving blessings to the boy on his head. “I will kneel in front of the Dharma photo of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche to pray for blessings for you and relief of your pain, fear and anxiety,” she went on, and added: “Your mother will attend the Great Indiscriminate Amitabha Puja for Transferring Consciousness of Tibetan Buddhism on August 26.”

During the period after the completion of the Grand Puja to September 1, her cousin was praying for Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche to help and her son’s Glasgow Coma Score went up to somewhere between 7 and 9. On September 1, when her cousin sought an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, she was told explicitly that her son would not die and that he was injured in the right brain, front chest and right thigh. “It takes time to recover, but it will not be very long since he is young,” said Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche assuringly, which took the heavy burden off her cousin’s heart. In fact, the boy was transferred from ICU to the ward before mid-September and is now recovering steadily.

“ICU is the hell of this world,” she told her cousin, sharing the teaching of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. Her cousin suffered terribly because of what her son had to go through in ICU, and then came to realize that perhaps some ancestors of the family were still suffering in the hell. So she had an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche again on September 22, where she expressed gratitude to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for saving her son and implored the opportunity to attend the Chod Puja on behalf of the sentient beings in the Dharma Realm,, and her request was granted.

On the morning of October 4, her nephew underwent another surgery to fix the problems of fluid accumulation in six locations of his brain and periosteal tissues in his right leg. That same evening, she went to see her nephew in the hospital, but missed visiting hours. As she was leaving, she ran across the nurse who took care of the boy, and asked about his conditions. The nurse told her that the anesthetic effect has faded away and her nephew looked well. He could recognize people, and when the nurse was about to leave his room, he grasped her hand, wishing her to stay there. As he just underwent surgery, he was to stay in ICU for observation and a decision would be made whether he could be transferred to the ward the next morning. At 11am the next day, he was already in the ward.

The nurse also shared with her an amazing thing happening to her nephew. Before undergoing the second surgery, he could write with a pen, and use gestures such as nodding the head and waving a hand to express ok, yes, no or goodbye. She looked at the nurse with some disbelief and asked whether he was just able to write a single character slowly and clumsily. The nurse replied, “Believe it or not, he really can write many characters.” When his classmates came to visit him, the nurse asked him which of the visitors he would like to write something to. Then he wrote the names of his classmates, cousin and cousin-in-law, to the great amazement of all present.

The disciple expressed her gratitude to the compassionate His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche and praised his incredible blessings for relieving sentient beings’ suffering. She also expressed thanks to her many Dharma brothers for giving encouragement to her cousin and prompting her to seek help from His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.

On November 6 last year (2011), a good friend of hers passed away at the Hospice House. When the friend’s family told her about it, her friend had passed away for nearly a week. At the time, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche was in India attending pujas and performing a retreat. It was about two weeks later that the husband of her deceased friend and his children were received by Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche, who stated that the deceased’s problem was in her chest. Her deceased friend’s husband replied, “Yes, it was breast cancer, which later spread.” Then Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche said, “Without a meritorious guru to rely on, no one can expect to be reborn in the Amitabha Pure Land by one’s own will alone.”

After listening to what Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche said, her deceased friend’s husband immediately explained for his wife, describing how determined she was to go to the Pure Land of Ultimate Bliss. During hospitalization, she had a large Dharma photo of Amitabha hung on the wall opposite her bed to constantly remind herself of where she was going, thus calming her heart. She communicated with the doctors multiple times, stating clearly that if what she was suffering from was karmic retribution and causality, she accepted it gladly, and would not undergo chemotherapy or take any medication.

Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche told her deceased friend’s husband not to panic, and stated, “I am speaking to you, and to your deceased wife as well.” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche explained that, because of the deceased’s faith in Buddhism, the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas have not forsaken her and given the causal conditions for her to meet Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche and get help. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche asked her deceased friend’s husband, “What do you hang on the wall in your home?” The answer was “the refuge field picture she received after taking refuge with her guru in Tibetan Buddhism”. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche then said to him, “I will protect the deceased’s consciousness in the refuge field for now”.

Her deceased friend’s husband, full of tears of gratitude, thanked Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for the compassionate teachings and implored for the opportunity to attend the auspicious Chod Puja hoping that his deceased wife would be liberated by Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. “Which of you will attend the Chod Puja?” asked the guru. Her deceased friend’s husband replied, “The children do not have the causal condition to attend right now and have to return to the US to continue their education. After they complete their studies, they will return to Taiwan to seek an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche again. For now, only I will attend the Chod Puja.”

This female disciple expressed her gratitude to the great compassionate His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for not only protecting her friend’s consciousness in her refuge field but also liberating her in the Chod Puja later.

She took refuge with His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche on September 11 last year (2011). Since then, she has always been grateful that how privileged she was to have such a meritorious, compassionate, awe inspiring, all-embracing and remarkably accomplished Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche to take refuge with. In June 2011, with the introduction of her friend, she sought an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche in the Glorious Jewel Buddhist Center. Prior to that, she had attended several Chod Pujas hosted by other lineages of Tibetan Buddhism. So when asked what matters she had, she replied very unwisely, “I would like to understand more about the Chod Puja.” Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche said sternly, “The Chod Puja is not for you to understand.You are lacking reverence for the Three Jewels, the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas.” At the words of the guru, her eyes became red and filled with tears. She closed her eyes tightly, and thought to herself: “Oh, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche is giving me a lesson meant to rectify my attitude.” She did not take what the guru said as a rebuke. It was some time later that she realized that the tears she shed then were tears of repentance. At last, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche said compassionately, “Well, you may come again next week if you would like.”

Because she had to go abroad for business at the time, she did not seek an audience with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche after that. It was only on August 14 when she attended the Great Indiscriminate Amitabha Puja for Transferring Consciousness of Tibetan Buddhism that she had the causal condition to see His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche again. It was the first time she attended such an auspicious Grand Puja. Watching the DVD played on the large screen, which featured the trip of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche to Tibet to promote the Dharma and give blessings to Tibetan compatriots, she felt the immense compassion of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. Upon hearing Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche singing “Reminiscing the Guru”, she was moved to tears.

Once, not long after the Grand Puja, when a Dharma brother shared at her sister’s home the many stories of Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche and praised the merits of the guru, her mother said in tears that her grandma had passed away for ten years and might be still suffering. The Dharma brother suggested that her mother implore Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche to liberate the deceased. Then in early September, she took her mother to implore Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche to liberate her deceased grandma. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche not only agreed their request, but also blessed her mother for a long time and allowed them to attend the auspicious Chod Puja. When Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche asked if she had anything else to ask, she suddenly, with a burst of courage coming from nowhere, implored to take refuge with Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.

Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche said with a smile, “It is okay to be where you are. I am very strict, and often reprimand my disciples.” She replied, “I am not afraid!” In fact, she had started to learn Exoteric Buddhism two years before in another Buddhist center, and that was why Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche said, “It is okay to be where you are”. Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche continued, “You also have to be a vegetarian.” She immediately replied, “Yes.” She was grateful to Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for opening the path for her to learn Buddhism and for accepting her mother’s offerings so that her mother could accumulate merits and virtues.

She had been attending the regular pujas on Sundays, where Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche expounds on Buddhist teachings and mandane teachings. When hearing Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche relating how he served his ninety-something-year-old mother, she was ashamed. Before she got married, her mother was always worried about her and would cook a delicious lunch and take it to her workplace for fear that she did not eat well outside. Her mother was an independent person. Though advanced in age now, she is always thoughtful and considerate of her children who are busy with their lives and families, and never would trouble them as long as she can help. She often lives alone and attends her own needs. The female disciple repented that she was not thoughtful enough as a daughter. She used to think that giving her mother calls is enough, which was really unfilial.

In her childhood, living in the countryside, she used to steal money from the elderly, tell lies, be dishonest, play truant, and capture worms, dragonflies, scarabs, cicadas, ladybugs, and fireflies for fun. Once she used earthworms to angle frogs, only to angle out a snake. She also used to pour water into the holes of ants or grasshoppers to force them out. She repented for all her vicious acts that harmed the sentient beings.

She also repented for eating the meat of sentient beings including chicken, duck, fish, goose, pig, ox and sheep, as well as various sea lives like sea shells, crabs and lobsters. In her childhood, she even drank snake soup. She was a rebellious girl and did not quite like school, which caused worries to her grandparents, parents, uncles and aunties. She deeply repented for all her previous evil acts, selfish thoughts, and all forms of greed, anger, delusion, arrogance, and doubts, and sincerely pleaded for all sentient beings’ forgiveness. She also realized her faults and was determined to mend her way immediately so that she would not commit any faults again.

She kowtowed to His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for accepting her as a disciple. She vowed to be obedient, learn Buddhism diligently and act according to Buddhist teachings to repay the kindness of the guru. At last, she prayed that His Eminence Vajra Guru Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has good health and keeps turning the Dharma wheel and that the Drikung Kagyu lineage prospers eternally to benefit all sentient beings.

Then the assembly sat quietly until the conclusion of the puja.

« Previous – Puja TeachingsNext »

Updated on December 14, 2012