872: My Eternal Guru – The True Light In All Darkness

I took refuge under His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche on October 13, 2013. Since becoming a Buddhist every part of my life has changed.I would like to share a few of the ways His Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche has helped me and my family.

I fell two years ago on my way to work in the last week of May. I was in pain but I continued to go to work because the biggest group of the year was coming to our school that day. There were only five foreign teachers but we needed seven for the large group. When I got to school the swelling was so bad even after applying ice that I went to the nurse. She said I should go to the doctor because she thought the bone might be damaged. She put a temporary splint on my hand and arm. I told my boss I would stay until the classes finished and then I would go. The pain disappeared. At lunch time, I told my colleagues that I didn’t think anything was broken because I didn’t feel any pain.

I finished class at 2:40. When I was going to the doctor, the pain returned. The doctor said I had broken a bone and he thought I would need surgery for proper healing. I had to go to another floor to get a plaster splint on my wrist and get medicine for the pain and then return. When I came back the shift had ended and there was a different doctor. The first thing he said was he didn’t think I would need an operation. He told me they would change the splint to a cast later. He said I could remove it in a few months if it healed properly.

When I saw Rinpoche he put his hand on my wrist and arm and gave me a blessing. Thank You Your Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.

Rinpoche showed me body language of me crushing a spider with my hand and fingers. I repent that I said I didn’t remember it. After thinking about this I realized this showed I was unwilling to accept responsibility for what I did. Rinpoche scolded me and told me it didn’t matter if I remembered because he just saw me doing it. He also told me if I hadn’t taken refuge my arm would be gone because my accident would be much more serious. He told me to offer the merits from the puja on the following day to the sentient beings I had harmed. After blessing Rinpoche said, “it should be OK now” I didn’t ask him about the operation.

After Rinpoche’s blessing the serious bruising disappeared and I could write again within two days. It had been very painful to move my hands or fingers before that. The summer is the busiest time at my school and I had to teach one craft class that required using my hands to demonstrate while speaking English.

Rinpoche’s blessing helped me in so many ways. I am right-handed but I have always used my left hand to pray so my practice was not interrupted. I had also fallen right across from the hospital I would later go to. On the third day I stopped the western pain medicine and switched to Chinese medicine. Instead of a cast I got a plastic splint. This type of splint made my job much easier. The Western Doctor X-rayed my wrist a final time and said my bone was perfectly healed. This was the middle of August. The doctor said it healed very quickly. Thank You Your Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. I had another very serious fall later during a typhoon. I was lifted off the ground and carried by a wind toward a big window but fell down before I hit it. I had just returned from Taipei and didn’t get home before the typhoon started. I saw Rinpoche at the Dahzi coffee shop that day. Although this fall was more serious I only got a small cut on my elbow. It bled when I fell but healed in two days. I felt shocked and very scared after this fall.

I repent for my disrespectful behavior and words and my slanderous unwillingness to believe Rinpoche’s words. While praying one day soon after I fell I noticed a very tiny baby spider on my dharma text. I put it on the Mandela carefully. I felt protective towards the baby spider. After that many baby spiders appeared in many places in every room in my apartment. This is helping me to transform my hate into total acceptance. I am trying to change my fear of spiders into compassion. I was able to hurt spiders so easily and justify it with fear. Now I see that my hate is really fear. I used to think I was superior to smaller sentient beings. This was my arrogance and my abuse of power. I was big and they were much smaller. When I fell vulnerable and weak like they must have been when I hurt them so cruelly. A wrist, hand and fingers are a lot like a spider’s body. If one part is hurt the other parts can’t function properly and cause all the parts pain. I had some time to see what it was like to be unable to do simple things like eat and get dressed each day without a great effort. I begin to see how much harm I had caused the spiders. Thank You Your Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for saving my arm.

On September 28, 2016 my sister told her husband’s brother needed a triple bypass surgery and a defibrillator and was currently refusing the surgery. She asked me to say a prayer. I told her I would say many prayers. On September 30 she emailed that he needed emergency surgery due to three blocks. One at 100 per cent and two at 70 per cent. There was going to be a medical consultation at the hospital the following morning about his condition. My sister and her husband were trying to fly to Western Canada to where he lived. On the same day September 30 I wrote that I would be in the temple the next day I said that although I couldn’t speak directly to my teacher I would implore Rinpoche for his help, blessing and protection. I said I knew my teacher would hear me and if he had a connection and was able to help Mick he would (I realize now it was a mistake to say this. I should have just said what I would do. Rinpoche has since told us this is not right. We should not speak for our Guru I am sorry for this mistake) my sister and her husband returned home because they couldn’t stay any longer.

The brother agreed to have surgery but the surgery date had not been set yet. They expected it to be one or two weeks. I emailed my sister and her husband about Rinpoche’s temple and the reason I couldn’t donate. I said I would like to donate in Mick’s name, her husband’s brother. My sister and her husband are both Catholics and I told them not to feel uncomfortable if they said no. There was no answer for more than a week. On October 12 my sister said “that her husband thought it would be wonderful if I made a donation. I immediately donated in Mick’s name and told my sister. On November 5 my sister wrote “that Mick got out of the hospital last Friday- six weeks three days, 5 bypasses, a defibrillator and a pacemaker later. She thanked me for my concern and prayers and said it meant a lot to them. On November 22 my sister said Mick was starting to feel better and was talking about flying across Canada to see them in late summer next year. Thank You Your Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.

My brother has a serious addiction to alcohol. Rinpoche also helped him after he was badly beaten and had his jaw broken. I think Rinpoche probably saved his life at this time. I used to constantly worry about my brother and feel utterly helpless. When I implored Rinpoche to help him he told me to stop worrying .For the first time in my life I have been able to let go of this habit. When I shared this story with my family members they have also been relieved in a similar way. Rinpoche told me he would help my uncle when he died. I was very happy because there was so much pain in his family just before he died. Since I became a disciple relations between all my family members is more peaceful. Their lives are all going more smoothly then before and they are all healthy. My family has also been supportive about my change to Buddhism. I know this is all because of Rinpoche’s blessing. Thank you Rinpoche for helping me find a good job just before Chinese New year when I didn’t think I could find a job. These stories are only a small part of the way Rinpoche helps me in every moment. I know now Rinpoche is with me like my breath in every second.

I would like to repent with a shameful heart that I am still in the cycle of reincarnation.

I would like to repent for hurting and killing spiders and for all the other sentient beings I have killed, harmed, maimed, displaced from their homes or hurt in any way. I have fumigated three times in this life. Now I know this was mass murder. I am sorry for all my cruelty and inhumane actions towards all sentients beings. I repent for cooking lobsters while they were still alive and causing intense pain. I am sorry I have broken all the vows of Buddhism countless times before taking refuge. I have killed, stolen, engaged in sexual misconduct, and committed false speech and used alcohol and marijuana for extended periods. I used marijuana every day for a period of about five years. I am sorry I have thought about suicide many times in my life. I am sorry for my pride and arrogance, jealousy, greedy selfish, erroneous thoughts speech and actions in this life and in all past lives. I am sorry for being a Catholic and then an agnostic for so long. I am sorry for all the harm I have caused to other sentient being and myself. I am sorry I have wasted so much time in this life and not appreciated my meritorious Guru, Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche. I repent that I didn’t donate to the temple and appreciate this precious opportunity that I was offered. I repent for the most serious sin I have committed when I doubted my Guru during two pujas. I could not believe I did this but after thinking about it for a long time I realized that I must be very arrogant to doubt the actions and words of an enlightened Master. I realized that I am so ashamed of my arrogance that I hide it in doubt of my amazing guru. I can’t even see it because it is hidden in another feeling. This also shows me how little I know myself and how strong my ego is. Thank you my teacher for showing me myself and allowing me to repent and pay back some of my karmic debt.

Thank You Your Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche for teaching me how to live and to prepare for death. Thank you for being the most amazing master anyone could meet in any realm. Thank you teaching me to transform myself, my karma and my life Thank you for all you say, do and give my selfless master. May I always be with you may I never be parted from you my eternal Guru Your Eminence Rinchen Dorjee Rinpoche.

Respectfully written by Patricia MacDonald, Group 4, on July 23rd, 2017

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Updated on July 27, 2017