The Power of Intention

[Adapted from an oral commentary given by His Holiness Penor Rinpoche in conjunction with a ceremony wherein he bestowed the bodhisattva vow upon a gathering of disciples at Namdroling in Bozeman, Montana, November 1999. —Ed.]

Sometimes, although you are maintaining the bodhisattva vow internally and your intention is purely to benefit others, externally it may appear through [your] conduct or speech that you are breaking the vow. Although it may seem that a failure is occurring, if your actions and speech are motivated by bodhicitta, then no failure is occurring. That is referred to as a “reflection of failure.” For example, if it is necessary to commit a nonvirtue of the body or speech for the sake of benefiting others, that is permissible. In fact, not to do so could constitute a breakage of the bodhisattva vow. The motivation must be very clear. Whether your actions constitute a failure or not is determined by your own mind’s motivation. Here it is crucial to be careful, since losing the vow means taking lower rebirth.

From “THE PATH of the Bodhisattva: A Collection of the Thirty-Seven Practices of a Bodhisattva and Related Prayers” with a commentary by Kyabje Pema Norbu Rinpoche on the Prayer for Excellent Conduct

Compiled under the direction of Venerable Gyatrul Rinpoche Vimala Publishing 2008

Pure Intention and Healing

From a series of tweets by Jetsunma Ahkon Lhamo:

I am beginning to see that in order to heal from three years of trauma, it is necessary to forgive oneself for allowing it. For being gullible, a total “chump” if you will. I can now see I am angry at myself for not seeing through the game from the first. I see the best in people, to a fault, I think. I just never expect people to be evil and cruel. Or, conversely, do sense wrongdoers but think I deserve to hurt. Once I see it all and forgive me, I can forgive them, I am still working hard on that.

I actually find forgiving the hurters easier than forgiving myself! But without nurturing and forgiving myself, forgiving others will be shallow and weak. I don’t want that. When we (my peeps) and I walk away I pray it will be clean, loving, compassionate, and strong, knowing a disaster has been corrected. Motivation is everything; and I know it is, has been, and always will be pure, to protect Dharma, Palyul, virtue and in general all sentient beings from harm.

So as I study the situation it is very hard. Hard truth to face. Nothing requires more strength than confronting one’s own weaknesses. Nothing is dumber than to blame the hurters without taking into account all sides and factors. I always said about this event that I can forgive but never forget. Not good enough! My wish is to bring this into my practice so thoroughly that I can forgive and forget. To feel innocent again, renewed and confident. I know I will never be the same. Never, too much damage. But maybe I will like and trust this newly empowered “me” I intend to give rise to. And maybe I’ll be older, wiser, etc. I think it is possible for all of us. I hope whatever has happened and will happen here will be of benefit to all who are hurt and alone. I’m on my way now, and others, I hope will follow, and heal.

Copyright © Jetsunma Ahkon Lhamo.  All rights reserved

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