Samantabhadra’s King of Prayers is a practice text composed to help us cultivate the heart qualities of kindness, care, concern, love and compassion. Developing these qualities will help bring us peace of mind, confidence and a heightened sense of purpose, as well as nurturing and strengthening our relationships.
Geshe Tashi returns to Jetsun Drakpa Shedrup to guide us through the material, who in turn references a series of commentaries including one by Nagarjuna in the 2nd century CE.
As always, Geshe Tashi’s emphasis in these teachings is on how we can best experience the material for ourselves. He takes special care to help us build up and strengthen the foundations of our mindfulness and meditation practices.
Geshe la begins this class by once again reading from The Guide to the Bodhisattvas Way of Life, this time from Chapter Four, Verse 28. He translates from the original Tibetan text, as Shantideva asks a stunning question:
“Anger, lust and so on, these enemies of mind are like hands and fingers, devoid of faculties. They have no bravery, no cleverness. How then have they reduced me to such slavery?”
Geshe la shares his reasoning on why these overwhelming states of mind are in fact very unstable and can be removed. Love and compassion, on the other hand, are founded in truth and reason and can be built on and enhanced without limit.
How do we build on and enhance love and compassion? How do we satisfy our yearnings to be free from the suffering states of mind and replete with those that bring happiness? Geshe la continues with his commentary on the 11th Aspiration which helps us answer these questions. What do we need to do? Using everyday examples, Geshe la really brings the relevance of this aspiration to life.
11. Aspiration to the Different Methods for Entering into the “Good Actions.”
a) Seeing the Buddhas and their Pure Realms
b) Listening to the Speech of the Buddhas
c) Hearing the Turning of the Wheels of Dharma
d) Entering into All the Aeons.
e) Seeing all the Buddhas in One Instant
f) Entering the Sphere of Activity of the Buddhas
g) Accomplishing and Entering the Pure Lands
h) Entering into the Presence of the Buddhas
In the twelfth Aspiration, verses 36 & 37, Geshe la guides us through the Ten Powers of a Buddha. How does a Buddha do Buddha things? We can find the answers here:
12. Aspiration to the Power of Enlightenment through the Ten Powers
i. The Power of Swift Miracles
ii. The Power of the Vehicle, like a Doorway
iii. The Power of the Conduct that Possesses All Virtuous Qualities
iv. The Power of All-pervasive Loving Kindness
v. The Power of the Merit that is Totally Virtuous
vi. The Power of Wisdom Free from Attachment
vii. The Power of Knowledge
viii. The Power of Skilful Means
ix. The Power of Samadhi
x. The Power of Enlightenment
Experiencing The King of Prayers classes will continue every Sunday in January. We’ll be online from 2.15pm UK time for some social time, the class will begin at 2.30pm.
With our very best wishes,
Your Admin Team