Meeting Life's Challenges

Discovering the Jewel of the Sangha: Clarifying the Purpose of Sangha & Community

 It is said that the bond between sangha members who have the same Root Guru is among the most profound and deep relationship one can possibly have with another human being. Only the relationship between a student and their Root Guru surpasses this. That means the bond between sangha members is said to be far greater than that found between parents and children, friends, relatives and so on. Why is that so? Because the sangha is based upon a mutual vision of realizing the enlightened path. Since the goal is the most profound goal possible for beings to strive for, the community which supports such a vision is built with bonds that surpass all others.

Becoming Unstuck: Part 1 – Drowning in Familiarity

It seems that, week after week, we often feel the same, even though so many things happen in a week. But this feeling of sameness and being stuck has causes and conditions. If we examine the causes and conditions of feeling stuck, the first and most important thing to know is that we are only stuck in our mind. We don't get stuck anywhere else. Often we are attached to familiar situations, and familiar feelings even when the environment and feelings are not that great, we prefer them because at least they are familiar. 

Finding Compassion Through Pain

When you hit the bottom of all your resources of trying to apply so many kinds of remedies to the pain, and all of them have failed, then there comes a sense of fearlessness. A fearlessness to directly engage with the pain in a very naked way. A courage to experience the pain as it is, without any layers over it, becomes more accessible to you. At that point, what you have longed for so many times in your life — to be brave and free of fears — finally, through pain, it happens. And you feel liberated.

Dieting Away Unhealthy Emotions – Gaining Control of One’s Mind

When you reflect on your desires, and allow yourself a second chance to think, before you actually act on them, you will gain more control of your mind and power over your life. So the way to work for happiness in your life is not to, “go for it” on the outside; it’s more about “going for it” on the inside.

Daytime, Sleep, and Dream - Part III: Dream

If we fixate on the content of our dreams–thinking that some dreams are troublesome while others are comforting–that tendency to judge phenomena will continue to shadow our waking life. We need to let our life unfold, uncontrived–awake, asleep, and even while dreaming. You do not have to do anything to recognize the illusory quality of phenomena; you just need observe the unfolding of your mind, free from fear, attachment, or indifference.

Daytime, Sleep, and Dream-Part II: Falling Asleep, “Striking the Gong of the Alaya”

Why are we unable to get good night’s sleep? When we are not relating well to our ever-changing thoughts and emotions, our mental energy leaves us feeling exhausted and overwhelmed. Nature has given us a personal reset button, an opportunity to completely renew ourselves when we fall asleep, but often we are unwilling to let go and experience the gong of the alaya.

Daytime, Dream and Sleep: Part 1 - Waking Up

How can we maintain a fresh attitude throughout our daily lives? Can we wake up “brand new” every morning, free from expectation, hope, and fear? The world feels tiresome because we are not trained to see the freshness inherent in every single moment. By understanding impermanence, we can develop this fresh attitude that frees us from constantly judging each experience throughout each day–as good or bad, positive or negative, right or wrong, exciting or boring.

Samsara Junkies: Working with Addiction and Developing Tolerance

Our whole world and everything in it can be viewed, simply, as an addiction. We are addicted to this samsaric world and to its wide range of colorful emotions, dazzling scenery, and tumultuous experiences. Cultivating tolerance instead of becoming more emotional about an addictive condition is the way to become free from its unyielding grasp.

What are the Karmic Implications of Bequeathing An Estate or Accepting an Inheritance?

When people die they usually pass on their assets and belongings to their children, especially in the West. We should keep in mind that there are some complications to bequeathing or  inheriting money and possessions. Children must consider the karmic implications of what they do with an inheritance, and parents should factor in the karmic implications of their gift-giving. Here are some guidelines from Rinpoche to keep in mind.


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