On Dharma

Dharma is not about who is right and who is wrong; it is not about whose centre is big; it is not about which religion is right; it is not about whether there is a next life or not; it is not about whether Buddha exists or God exists; it is not about whether Catholicism is the real religion or Buddhism is the real religion; it is not about any of that. It is about us bring harmony into our families, into our lives and to the people we care about Now. That is what it is about. And that is what we learn Dharma for.

The greatest mind is not about wanting other people to change; but you yourself changing and accepting other people. The greatest mind is to stop thinking when THEY will change. No. We should think, “When will I change?”

The effect we have on others when we make them happy without motive and when their mind is happy because of us –  that is Dharma.

If you have one less argument with your partner, that is Dharma
If you have one less attachment, that is Dharma.
If you control your anger once a day, that is Dharma.
If you forgive your partner, that is Dharma.
That is what Dharma isbringing people together.

You want to be spiritual?
Buy flowers for your wife. Stop nagging your husband. Take your wives out to eat. Don’t cheat on your husbands and wives, in any way.

You want the greatest practice?
The greatest practice is getting behind a steering wheel and taking your mother and father out to eat.

You want the greatest mantra?
The greatest mantra is, “How are you. Mummy? How are you, Daddy? What can I do for you?” That is the greatest mantra at this moment, for us.

You don’t give up your job because you’re not rich. You keep working until you’re rich(whatever your definition of rich is.) It would be stupid to say, ” I’m not rich, I give up.” So how can you say, ” Certain people don’t practise the Eight Verses of Transforming the Mind and , therefore, I am not going to do it”? That’s all the more reason you should do it. That’s all the more reason you should be involved. That’s all the more reason you should practise.

You’re not practising on the basis of getting something. You’re practising on the basis that something is lacking so you wish to give. We do not do Dharma practice based on other people, situations, or environments. We do Dharma practice for other people, for other situations and for other environments.

Dharma allows you to keep and have what you have but the motive and purpose of having it changes so the results also change. For example, now we might think, ” I will eat so I can be strongest and surpass everyone else.” After knowing Dharma, we think, ” i will eat so my body has strength to benefit others.” The act of eating remains the same but the motive and purpose become different. Therefore the act of eating itself creates positive karma due to the change of our motive. If we apply the same thing to all our activities, then engaging in them would not bring negative results. That is how we can remain “same” on the outside but have huge transformation on the inside.

When someone shouts at you, when someone scolds you, when someone is rude to you, when someone has abused you or is hurting you, when someone doesn’t agree with you or opposes you – that is when you practise the Dharma.

Spiritual practice is not about going to places and chanting., knowing the stuff and debating. Spiritual practice is the transformation of our perspective and how we look at things. It is how much our mind has changed from negative to positive. That is spiritual practice.

-Tsem Tulku Rinpoche

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