Quote Archives: Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

A different interpretation of austerity ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

People sometimes think twice about getting onto a spiritual path because they worry about having to give up so much. There is this feeling like, “I can’t be a good Dharma practitioner because I like to have sex, I want good food, I want to have money in the bank, and I don’t want to […]

The real source of fear is not knowing ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

When you begin to notice the damage that emotions can do, awareness develops. When you have awareness — for example, if you know that you are on the edge of a cliff — you understand the dangers before you. You can still go ahead and do as you were doing; walking on a cliff with […]

Guru devotion and pure perception ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

When you see something you like, you perceive it as desirable and good. Likewise, if you see somebody you don’t like, then the perception is negative. Kindness, tolerance, impatience, wrath are all your own perception. If you feel kindness instead of wrath, you have a different perception. If you are more tolerant than impatient, you […]

Outer display of guru devotion ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

Oftentimes, students are not aware of the possible negative consequences of being overly enthusiastic about their guru devotion. Instead of inspiring others, such enthusiasm could actually put others off. For example, some older students in Bhutan instruct completely new beginners to do things like eat the guru’s leftover food and put socks on the guru’s […]

Skillful Guru ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

It’s not always easy to know what skills a guru has. Some very academic gurus can tell you which page number you should read in which edition of a text, and can remember exact dates. This is impressive if you are a university student, but if you’re following a spiritual path, it may not be […]

Famous unintentionally ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

These days, Buddhist lamas and institutions are cultivating fame by blatantly branding themselves with logos and stickers and lapel pins. People have even hinted that in Kathmandu event coordinators hire people to wait in a crowd at the airport arrivals area to create a more impressive greeting when certain lamas are arriving. In Bhutan and […]

As if for the last time ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

Start to look at and relate to everything and everyone around you as if you were seeing them for the last time. Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

Beginning to subdue and outshine appearance and existence ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

Tantric practitioners are not really worshipping a guru because of his personality, his achievements, his charisma, or his reputation. It’s nothing personal at all. A tantric practitioner has to see everyone as the guru. Not only that, a tantric practitioner has to see everything as the guru’s form, every sound as the guru’s voice, and […]

Experience is like a mist in the morning ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

An important point to remember is that whatever information we gather, we also filter, so what we’re left with is a very particular kind of understanding unique to ourselves. This understanding is not realization. It’s not even an experience. It is like a patch that will eventually fall off. It’s fine to be covered in […]

Practicing Dharma requires sacrifice ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

We have to realize the Dharma is priceless. That does not mean Dharma is free. Practicing Dharma requires sacrifice, and sacrifice comes in many forms. If you are a hippie-dippy person and your guru tells you to get a job at a bank or to become a CEO, that is probably one of the most […]

The path is practical ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

The goal we are aiming for is not far off in the distance; the goal is already here and now, just as the path is working here and now. The path is practical. Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

Not paranoid but prepared ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

Fearlessness is generated when you can appreciate uncertainty, when you have faith in the impossibility of these interconnected components remaining static and permanent. You will find yourself, in a very true sense, preparing for the worst while allowing for the best. You become dignified and majestic. These qualities enhance your ability to work, wage war, […]

Examining the Guru ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

There is no contradiction between the need to examine the guru and the understanding that the guru is our own perception. In fact, the two positions complement each other. Basically, we must always examine our owin perception. Other than that, there is nothing to examine. Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

The decision to follow a spiritual path ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

The decision to follow a spiritual path is the central most important undertaking of a person’s life, one that is usually made when trust in more worldly objectives is betrayed, causing you to resolve to switch to a more trustworthy path. If listening to and contemplating the teachings and practising meditation inspires you, the likelihood […]

Sources of our inspiration ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

A willingness to be inspired and a tendency to be turned off are both relative reactions: some people are inspired by the sight of a serene monk with a begging bowl; others by a half-drunk, half-naked yogi. Certain vajrayana students derive far more inspiration from the sight of a bizarrely dressed guru sporting a good […]

Buying into emotions ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

Siddhartha was also trying to cut suffering at its root. But he was not dreaming up solutions such as starting a political revolution, migrating to another planet, or creating a new world economy. He wasn’t even thinking about creating a religion or developing codes of conduct that would bring peace and harmony. He explored suffering […]

A practicing Buddhist ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

As long as you accept and practice these four truths (all compounded things are impermanent, all emotions are pain, all things have no inherent existence, nirvana is beyond concepts) you are a “practicing Buddhist.” You might read about these four truths for the sake of entertainment or mental exercise, but if you don’t practice them, […]

Devotion ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

It may sound as if you must have devotion in order to have an understanding of the view, that devotion ignites the practice of the Dharma. But as you become more seasoned in practicing the Dharma, especially the Vajrayana, the gap between devotion and the goal of the devotion becomes very small. As you become […]

Wishing happiness for those who have hurt you ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

Every one of us has been hurt by people we have cared for, and although we may insist we have forgotten all about it, we rarely have. To help ease any lingering pain, visualise them in the place of honour, and as you arouse bodhichitta, wish them everything that is good. If thinking about them […]

The solutions have to be progressive ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

The Buddha advised that the practice of the Vinaya has to be progressive, adapting to time and place. Over time, the nature of emotions, hang-ups, reference points, and neuroses have adjusted because of changing culture; therefore, the solutions have to be progressive. One can be progressive and still traditional. The guru should not insist that […]