After a brief “Tashi News” update on the Coronavirus situation in India, Geshe Tashi launches into his commentary on Maitreya’s Prayer of Love.
He begins by giving context to the good habit we can develop of taking refuge at the beginning of any study or practice. It is a reminder, he says, not to spend all our time solving immediate problems at the expense of attending to our longer-term difficulties and goals. Part of refuge is enhancing bodhichitta, and this will take care of our long-term needs, close the door to unhealthy actions, and lead us on the path to higher rebirth and enlightenment.
Verses 5 and 6 cover offering, confessing, prostrations, rejoicing and dedication: five of the Seven Practices or seven limbs we know from the prayer of the same name.
As usual, Geshe Tashi translates for us directly from the original Tibetan text. In verse six he very helpfully explains the differences between yeshe and sherab, both of which can be translated as wisdom and can have the same meaning at a more general level, but at the same time have their own distinct qualities which are important to know.
In verse 7 Geshe la guides us through what it means to be a tenth level bodhisattva. In verse 8 we are introduced to the four demons. They had cultural significance in the time of Lord Buddha and, as we’re sure you’ll agree, “they” have very practical significance for us today.
Verses 7,8 and 9 show us how to request teachings, and the last two lines of verse 9 are a request to remain in cyclic existence, giving us a Seven Practices full house this week! Verse 9 is also, Geshe la adds, the verse that His Holiness the Dalai Lama often uses to request teachings (and to keep ceremony to a minimum, as is his way).
Another action-packed teaching from Geshe Tashi to help lift your spirits – and there’s more to come!
With best wishes as ever,
Your Admin Team
Maitreya’s Prayer of Love (Verses 5,6,7,8 & 9)
I offer all that I have to the Buddhas
In their pure lands of the ten directions.
In the wisdom of all the Buddhas
And in my own virtues I rejoice.
In short, I confess all harmful actions,
I make prostrations to all the Buddhas.
I rejoice in all acts of virtue
And I myself wish to obtain supreme wisdom.
Bodhisattvas of the tenth level
In all the ten directions
Need no reminder
To work for enlightenment.
Obtaining Buddhahood, supreme enlightenment,
Joining those who have subdued the demon of self-cherishing,
He will turn the Dharma wheel
In order to benefit all sentient beings.
I pray that sentient beings without exception
May be liberated by the sound of the great Dharma drum.
Please stay to teach the path to enlightenment
For inconceivable millions of eons.
FPMT, translator unknown
Khen Rinpoche Geshe Tashi Tsering taught in London for over 25 years and is currently Abbot of Sera Mey Monastery in Karnataka State, India.