The following is an excerpt from a Heart Teaching by His Holiness Penor Rinpoche given at Palyul Ling:
Without any kind of doubts and with complete determination, carry through the supplication prayer. Until we attain complete enlightenment, we have to rely on and depend on the lama. Through gratefulness to the lama we can enter the actual path. With our afflictive, emotional mind, it is possible for us to give rise to all sorts of conceptual thoughts. Our mind has so much afflictive emotion, which constantly arises with all sorts of doubts. This will always obscure the path of liberation. In the past, all the great masters and highly accomplished beings, without caring about the eight worldly concerns, completely dedicated themselves through the practice to abandoning all the afflictive emotions. Then with single-pointed mind, they spent their whole lives continuously doing the practice. Of course we all really like the idea of getting into those high bhumis, high realizations or high paths. But still somehow from beginningless lifetimes, we have gotten so habituated to all sorts of defilements and afflictive emotions that are constantly arising and from which we cannot liberate ourselves. For instance, from the moment that a child is born, he or she spontaneously has all the afflictive emotions. Nobody has to give any teaching or training on afflictive emotion. It is naturally there. However to turn one’s mind towards the Dharma, one must work hard and train. It seems so difficult.
As for samsaric or worldly activity, we work our whole lives, but still we can’t get rid of our attachment or clinging to it. No matter how much difficulty and hardship we go through, still we have a great deal of patience. No matter what material wealth or belongings we try to get, we are never content. We never have satisfaction thinking, “Oh now I have enough. This much is ok.” We are never satisfied. We collect all these material belongings. Even if we collected so much stuff that we filled up an empty house, we would still want more.
Our mind is also emptiness and that is why no matter how much wealth we may have, we never feel satisfied, and still want more. We should have less attachment to material or worldly activity, and try to be content. We should always try to give rise to devotion, inclination, and faith in relation to Dharma practice. Within samsara no matter what sorts of sufferings we are experiencing, we should realize that there is even more suffering, and through that we should turn our mind towards the Dharma and concentrate on the real practice. With one’s mind, body, and speech all together, concentrate on the supplication prayer with single-pointed devotion and faith, and inclination in relation with one’s root teacher until one attains complete enlightenment. Until enlightenment one takes refuge and supplicates to continue with these practices.
You also need to generate compassion and loving kindness towards all sentient beings who, in one lifetime or another, have all been your parents and very kind to you. Because of obscurations and not recognizing their true nature, they wander in samsara experiencing all sorts of suffering, even in the unbearable hell realms. Understanding that, one needs to generate compassion and loving kindness. To obtain the ultimate happiness, complete enlightenment – Buddhahood, we have to concentrate on the bodhicitta through which we can get onto the right path. All the countless past Buddhas and Bodhisattvas concentrated on the thought of bodhicitta and benefitting other sentient beings, and completely abandoned self-cherishing. In that way they attained the ultimate happiness.
Somehow from beginningless time, we have been constantly concentrating on self-benefit and self-cherishing, always working to accomplish that. That is why we still are not liberated, and are wandering in samsara. What we need to abandon and what we need to apply into practice has been completely and clearly taught by the Buddhas and all the masters. For a moment, when we hear all the teachings, we have some sense or feeling, but we cannot retain it in our mind, and then again we forget everything. The most important part of this practice is to obtain the ultimate happiness or Buddhahood.
With full devotion, inclination, and single-pointed faith, do these prayers. With one’s single-pointed mind, completely relying upon the Guru, do these supplication prayers. Have a stabilized mind with the inclination to receive the vase empowerment, the secret empowerment, and then the wisdom empowerment or word empowerment from the body, speech, and mind of the root teacher. One’s root teacher in the form of Guru Padmasambhava is inseparable with the enlightened mind of all the past, present, and future Buddhas. Having that sense of understanding and belief, as we do the meditation on the Guru dissolving into oneself, mingle one’s body, speech, and mind with the Guru’s enlightened body, speech, and mind. Try to rest in that nature. Breathe very softly and in a relaxed way with the exhalation a bit longer than the inhalation, not breathing in right away.