LIVE TEACHINGS WITH GESHE TASHI
EXPERIENCING THE KING OF PRAYERS
DATES: Every Sunday from the 1st November until the 6th December 2020 (part one). We expect this to be an in depth teaching over the next 6 months, with part 2 beginning again on the 17th January. To register for each class, please scroll down to the red button below.
TIME: 2.30pm UK, 8pm India, 6.30am Los Angeles, 9.30am New York, 10.30pm Perth. N.B. as a one off, just for Sunday 22nd November, the class will begin an hour earlier at 1.30pm UK time.
LOCATION: These teachings will be available to join as a Zoom meeting, and will also be live streamed on Facebook. Recordings of the classes are available here (please scroll down), on our blog, on Facebook and on our FBT YouTube channel.
TEXT: A big thank you to Lotsawa House for the text we will be using. Copies are available for download here: Samantabhadra’s King of Prayers.
COURSE DESCRIPTION: As always, Geshe Tashi’s emphasis in these teachings will be on how we can best experience the material for ourselves. 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. Beginning with the seven bodhisattva practices or preliminaries, this prayer is a series of aspirations to lead us step by step along the bodhisattva path. Geshe Tashi will once again turn 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.
DONATIONS: You will need to make a voluntary donation to register for each class. This can be £0.00. PayPal processes the donations, but you do not need a PayPal account to make a donation.
- All donations go through the FBT’s bank account, set up as a Community Interest Company.
- Half of all donations will go to Geshe Tashi and his charitable projects.
- The other half will go towards the growing costs of running both sites and hosting these teachings.
A big thank you from us and from Geshe la for all your donations so far, some of which, we know, are for all six classes. Thank you so much for your generosity. Once we have covered our running costs, we will be saving up for a part time admin assistant. Hopefully this will mean we can offer you a better experience in future.
REGISTRATION: To join Geshe Tashi in the Zoom Meeting, please register for the next upcoming class using the button below. You will need to register each week. Currently the Meeting is limited to 100 participants per week on a first come first served basis. When you register successfully you will receive an order confirmation email. There will then be an additional period of time before you receive the Meeting link. We have to complete each order manually, and only on completion is the link is sent to you. If you have received an order confirmation, rest assured we will make sure you receive your link before the class begins.
HOW TO REGISTER: You don’t need to have a PayPal account to register or make a donation. A few people have struggled with the process, and we’ve made a visual guide which we hope will help. You can see it by clicking here.
A NOTE ON PRESENTATION
We tried out Zoom Webinar as it seemed to promise a better quality viewing experience for everyone, but we were disappointed that none of you were able to be seen in the webinar. That was not the atmosphere we were going for. We will be using Zoom Meeting from now on.
We have also decided to begin the teachings fifteen minutes early to allow all of us some community time together. Geshe Tashi will join near to the beginning of the class. At 2.30pm exactly, we will mute all except Geshe la, and he will begin.
You can view all previous classes below, as well as on FBT’s YouTube site. We will let you know when we have it up and running as a podcast series.
A NOTE ON VIEWING CLASS ONE
A note from The Admin Team: We apologise for our unwanted intrusion into the video recording. You will see that after around 15 minutes we appear side by side with Geshe la, and then for the duration. This really wasn’t our intention by any means! Unfortunately we didn’t realise until we viewed the recording afterwards. We were trying out Zoom Webinar, as it seemed to promise a better quality experience for everyone, but we weren’t familiar enough with how it worked and we messed up. We will be returning to Zoom Meeting next time as it allows all participants to be seen by Geshe la in the teaching event. Hopefully we’ll do a better job.
We are also unhappy with the size of the viewing screen within the frame. This seems to be another unfortunate feature of Zoom Webinar. We expect class two to be back to the same format at the Coronavirus Updates.
Apologies from us both! Nevertheless, we hope you enjoy. This promises to be a great teaching series over the next six months.
In this class Geshe la gives a word by word translation and commentary on the first four verses, going into considerable detail on the first of the Seven Preliminary Practices – prostrations.
This is the mantra Geshe la mentions in the class, to recite while doing prostrations:
Om namo manjushriye, namo sushriye, namo uttama shriye soha
In this class Geshe la gives a commentary on verses five to eight, covering the second and third of the Seven Preliminary Practices – making offerings and purification. In his typically approachable and thorough way, he explains:
- how to make “unsurpassable offerings”
- the four obscurations to enlightenment
- the four powers that act as the mechanism of purification.
In this class Geshe la gives a translation and commentary on verses nine to twelve, covering the fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh of the Seven Preliminary Practices. This is a great opportunity to learn how to set up a meditation practice, or take your current understanding further.
The fourth Preliminary Practice is Rejoicing, and Geshe la puts it well when he calls it Appreciating. The fifth is Requesting the Buddhas to Teach; the sixth Requesting the Buddhas to Stay; and the seventh is Dedication.
In this class Geshe la starts the main body of the text, launching into the first of a series of aspirations that lead us step by step along the bodhisattva path. Translating and commenting on verses thirteen to twenty, Geshe la covers these first three beautiful bodhisattva aspirations we can hold in our heart at any time:
- The Aspiration for Purity of Attitude
- The Aspiration Never to Forget Bodhicitta
- The Aspiration to be Free from Defilements
In a live Q&A, Geshe la then gives answers to questions on: abandoning the arrogant mind; why the Buddha has the major and minor marks; what to make of the 21 Taras; The King of Prayers Sutra; and the order we can expect to realise the emptiness of self and the emptiness of phenomena.
This is another brilliant class, packed full of scholarship, common sense and heartfelt advice, we hope you enjoy.