Astrology for 10/18/2018

10/18/2018 Thursday by Wangmo & Jampal

Theme: Take yourself in-hand

Sparks may fly in conversations today. So it’s a good opportunity to identify your role in this. At the same time there is an ability to draw on spiritual nourishment that speaks to your place in a larger universe. This helps you in dealing with current unpredictability in relationships. No one can get rid of desire, get rid of pride, or get rid of anger if there is not enough stability and spaciousness to look at what is in one’s mind, to see how we are acting and to see what it is going to bring about.~Jetsunma Ahkon Norbu Lhamo

 

Right Speech

An excerpt from a teaching called The Eightfold Path by Jetsunma Ahkon Lhamo

Right speech is the first principal of ethical conduct on the Eightfold Path.  And on the Eightfold Path is really based on ethical conduct.  It’s one of the things that I like best about Buddhism.  It isn’t based on a pie-in-the-sky idea. You have to work it.  People who are recovering alcoholics will recognize that saying about the 12-step program, “It works if you work it.”  Right?  And the Eightfold Path is exactly like that.  If you don’t work it, you’re going to go back to the narcotic of samsara.  But if you do work it, you have strength and bones that you never had before.  There is a similarity.  I’ve often drawn that connection between the Buddha dharma and the way that self-honesty is required, and the 12-step program, especially in that we are all addicts.  We are addicted to our emotions.  We are addicted to our delusions.  We are addicted to our visions.  We are addicted to our dreams. We are all addicts. And we are just so drunk with the narcotic of samsara that it is hard to pay attention, and see what is the root of all this.  We are trying to become awake so that we can see all of that, and right speech is one of the guidelines to the moral discipline of ethics.

We don’t realize that you have to do right to be right. That is certainly true on the path of Buddha dharma.  The importance of speech in the Buddha dharma is central and obvious.  For one thing you can cause harm with speech, and you should never do that.  Right speech would be speaking well, speaking nobly, speaking higher, and not speaking against anyone or speaking harshly or cruelly, or gossiping.

Gossiping is a terrible ethical non-virtue or perversion of Buddhist ethics.  And I must say it’s rampant in most religious communities and in ours too.  It’s rampant.  It’s not what the Buddha taught and it should not be that way.  We should uphold one another with speech, rather than to tear one another down.  Words can break or save lives.  Think about that.  Words can make enemies or friends. Start war or create peace.  All by words.  And you can review history to see that that’s true.

To keep away from false speech, one especially should never tell deliberate lies or speak deceitfully.  Some people are storytellers, and tend to be expansive in their speech.  I’ve been known to do that myself.  When you tell a story, you expand it a little bit.  You polish it up.  Make it a little more interesting.  Throw in a few hand gestures. That’s not deceitful necessarily unless you are making yourself higher.  Then that would be deceitful.  If you said, “I had this experience in meditation.  It was so big.  You’ve never had anything like it.”  (And therefore, I’m big)  That would be wrong speech.  That would be unethical.  What we really want to do is avoid telling different lies, especially those that bring us power, acknowledgement, or approval, because then we know that we are lying to someone, which is unethical, in order to bring ourselves up above them which is not right either.  It ruins our right intention.

That would be called false speech and it is to be avoided.  We must also abstain from slanderous speech, and should not use words maliciously against others.  That’s gossip.  We do it all the time.  We should be very very careful with that, because one thing I’ve noticed about gossip and slander is that it comes right back to you, even in this very life.   But if we develop the habit of slanderous speech, lifetime after lifetime, what happiness can come from that?  We will be born into lifetimes where no matter what we do people will not think well of us.  We will be causing more suffering to others and ourselves.  To use words maliciously against others undermines the whole basis of the path, which is this right intention and this right view, and this consideration of the truth of the Four Noble Truths.

When we consider all of this together, we understand that malicious speech is not just a no no.  It’s a killer. We should abstain from harsh words that offend or hurt others. We can see what the ethics of that would be.  Like if I were to say to you, “Gee, you look kind of ugly today.”  What is the point of that?  Why would I need to do that?  Even if it were true, why would I do that?  Well, first of all I have shown that I have not accomplished right view.  Right there I have shown you my buttocks.  So, obviously this is not the right way to go.

We want to cultivate right intention, so we want to keep away from unethical speech that hurts or offends others.  We want to abstain from idle chatter that lacks purpose or depth.  Positively phrased, it means tell the truth, speak friendly, warmly and gently, and talk when you’ve got something to say.  Brilliant!  Only a Buddha could have thought of this.  Actually it was “talk only when necessary.” I had to have a little fun there.

© Jetsunma Ahkon Lhamo

Astrology for 10/17/2018

10/17/2018 Wednesday by Jampal & Wangmo

Theme: A mixed day

There is a tendency to think your feelings today and this is linked to fixed habitual patterns. Sometimes this means that you miss emotional cues you otherwise might see. It can also denote possessiveness and unexpected upsets. There is more freedom today in the spiritual realm. This includes healing potential. Life is a mixed blessing, which we vainly try to unmix.~Mignon McLaughlin

Today the Moon is Void of Course from 5.50 pm they day before until 3.37 am ESDT USA today. If you’re in another country check what that means for you time-wise. It’s best to avoid making major decisions or signing contracts during this time.

 

Astrology for 10/16/2018

10/16/2018 Tuesday by Jampal & Wangmo

Theme: A mixed bag

Today you are two personalities working at cross-purposes with yourself. Which side will win out? If tensions have been building up they will come to a head now. On the plus side you can draw on deep inner resources and your communication skills to deal with these conflicts. There is expansive energy to make space for your imagination and spiritual life today. …simply let it go, realizing all things are an emanation of mind, realizing all things are constructed.~Jetsunma Ahkon Norbu Lhamo

Today the Moon is Void of Course from 5.50 pm EDST USA until 3.37 am the next day. If you’re in another country check what that means for you time-wise. It’s best to avoid making major decisions or signing contracts during this time.

 

The Burning Room

The following is an excerpt from a teaching called “Essence of Devotion”

When embarking on the path, we look for the most excellent method.  We look for that method that gives excellent results every time.  That method would be Dharma.  Dharma has brought about enlightenment in generation after generation of students and teachers alike.  Students have become teachers who have returned to benefit beings, just as I hope you are hoping to do.

Now, we not only need that, but we need an excellent captain, and that captain should be considered none other than the Buddha and his emanations in the world.  The Buddha is the one who has successfully crossed the ocean of suffering and has, without a doubt, achieved enlightenment.  If you read the life of the Buddha there is no doubt that he has achieved enlightenment.  The results of his life—having brought enlightenment to so many others for 2,500 years­—can only have arisen from the mind of enlightenment.  So we want the proper ship.  We want the proper captain. We also need the proper navigator because it’s considered that, while the Buddha is the supreme captain of our ship, it is his spirit, his mind, his nature which is present in the navigator who does the driving and keeps us afloat. And that is our teacher.

So that is the situation that we want to hook up to.  That’s how to leave the party, another analogy that we can use. I love to teach in analogies because it’s much easier and simpler for us.  We can understand parties.  We can understand foolishness.  We can understand suffering.  We can understand ships and water and the urge not to drown, but sometimes it’s hard to understand Dharma. So I like to learn and I like to express in analogies. One good analogy for understanding our present situation as we embark on the great task of practicing refuge and Bodhicitta is that when we look around and we read the paper and we see our own eventual age and death and all the sufferings that come with it, as well as the sufferings of others, we consider that the two of them are unbearable and they are inseparable.  I am suffering, you are suffering.  It’s all one package.  You come to realize that it’s like you’re in a burning room.  You know, the room just burning, burning, burning, burning, on fire, and at that point you look around and you realize that there is one door, one opening, not even a window.  One door as an exit from that room, and that door is wide open.  How much love and regard will you have for that door, while being in that burning room?  Well, we’re so funny, we’re so kind of asleep at the wheel, at least in the first part of our spiritual path. Maybe we don’t even have much realization but, when in our own experience the room really begins to get hot and we begin to see the singeing of our own hairs and really relate to the burning of our own flesh. we begin to see, really see, what the situation is due to our own experience. And we will someday.  We will.  If not now, then someday.  Then at that time we look at that door with such love and regard. In fact, we don’t even think about how much we love and regard the door.  We are so into the door that we are out of the door as soon as possible.  We love the door.  The door is our hope.

It’s like that when we approach the path.  As we begin to practice turning the mind towards Dharma, we begin to practice seeing what is in this ocean of suffering, what we are surrounded with.  Then at that point, we begin to take in our own real experience and how kind of silly it is when we try to keep on top of our suffering when, in fact, we are suffering and it is foolish to be in denial about that.  At that point our minds soften. They gentle and they turn.  And suddenly we get smart in a way we were never smart before.  Suddenly we’re on Red Alert.  Something is different and we begin to regard that door, not as just a shape in a room, but as something that is more meaningful to us than anything else.  The path is that door.  Our teachers who give us the path are that door.  The method is that door.  That is our opportunity to exit samsara.

Copyright © Jetsunma Ahkon Norbu Lhamo.  All rights reserved

 

Astrology for 10/15/2018

10/15/2018 Monday by Wangmo & Jampal

Theme: Artist at work

Today the artistic side of expression is reaching its apex. It enables you to communication more fully your vision whatever your artistic medium or side. This can be liberating especially when dealing with an unchanging yet unpredictable set of circumstances. With the Moon in Capricorn there is a seriousness and methodicalness to your endeavors. Filling a space in a beautiful way. That’s what art means to me.~Georgia O’Keefe

Astrology for 10/14/2018

10/14/2018 Sunday by Jampal & Wangmo

Theme: Succumbing to challenges

Today there is more of a sense of battling alone which can create a sense of isolation and, at worst, depression. There may be an underlying past hurt that is adding to the situation. Something unexpected will surface today that could put you off balance. Good friends are very helpful in providing support at this time. It is one of the blessings of old friends that you can afford to be stupid with them.~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Today the Moon is Void of Course from 8.59 pm EDST USA the night before until 3.18 pm. If you’re in another country check what that means for you time-wise. It’s best to avoid making major decisions or signing contracts during this time.

Astrology for 10/13/2018

10/13/2018 Saturday by Jampal & Wangmo

Theme: Challenges to discernment

The inner and outer realities are at odds today. Your intuition may not serve you well. It’s a good day for spiritual practice and inner activity rather than focusing your energies on worldly activities. There is a tendency to be argumentative so it’s good to have an alternative outlet such as exercise. The Universe is under no obligation to make sense to you.~Neil deGrasse Tyson

Today the Moon is Void of Course from 8.59 pm EDST USA until 3.18 pm the next day. If you’re in another country check what that means for you time-wise. It’s best to avoid making major decisions or signing contracts during this time.

Life And Liberation Of Jetsunma Ahkon Lhamo

༈རྗེ་བཙུན་མ་ཨ་ཁམ་ལྷ་མོ།

 

རྗེ་བཙུན་སྒྲོལ་མའི་རྣམ་པར་སྤྲུལ་བ་འགྲོ་བ་མིའི་ཤ་ཚུགས་སུ་བྱོན་པ་རྗེ་བཙུན་མ་ཨ་ཁམ་ལྷ་མོ་ནི། མདོ་ཁམས་བུ་འབོར་གང་གི་ཆར་གཏོགས་པ་དཔལ་ཡུལ་ཨ་མཆོག་གྲོ་ལྷས་ཞེས་པ་སའི་དགེ་བཅུ་ཚང་བའི་ཡུལ་དུ་ཡབ་རིགས་རུས་ཀྱི་མངོན་པར་མཐོ་བ་དམུ་ཚ་སྒའི་རིགས་རྒྱུད་རྡོ་རྗེ་དང། ཡུམ་ཡེ་ཤེས་མཁའ་འགྲོ་མ་གུ་རུ་མཚོ་གཉིས་ཀྱི་སྲས་མོར་བོད་རབ་བྱུང་༡༡་པའི་དཀྱིལ་སྨད་ཙམ་དང་སྤྱི་ལོ་དུས་རབས་༡༧་པའི་སྨད་ཙམ་དུ་ངོ་མཚར་བའི་ལྟས་དུ་མ་དང་བཅས་ཏེ་རིག་འཛིན་ཆེན་པོ་ཀུན་བཟང་ཤེས་རབ་ཀྱི་གཅུང་མོ་ཆུང་བར་སྐུ་འཁྲུངས་ཤིང་། སྐུ་ན་ཆུང་དུས་ནས་ཡི་གེ་འབྲི་ཀློག་སོགས་བསླབ་པ་ཙམ་གྱིས་ཚེགས་མེད་པ་མཁྱེན་པ་བྱུང་། རིག་འཛིན་ཀུན་བཟང་ཤེས་རབ་དང་མཉམ་དུ་སྔ་གཞུག་རྣམས་སུ་གཏེར་སྟོན་ཆེན་པོ་མི་འགྱུར་རྡོ་རྗེ་དང་། ཅོག་རོ་ཀླུའི་རྒྱལ་མཚན་གྱི་ཟློས་གར་མཁས་གྲུབ་ཀརྨ་ཆགས་མེད་རྣམ་གཉིས་ཀྱི་གཙོས་མཁས་ཤིང་གྲུབ་པ་བརྙེས་པའི་སྐྱེས་ཆེན་དུ་མའི་ཞབས་རྡུལ་སྤྱི་བོར་བླངས་ནས་མདོ་རྒྱུད་རྒྱུད་སྡེ་རབ་འབྱམས་ལ་ཐོས་བསམ་གྱིས་སྒྲོ་འདོགས་ལེགས་པར་བཅད་དེ། གནས་ངེས་མེད་རྣམས་སུ་བྱོན་ནས་སྒྲུབ་པ་ཉམས་ལེན་ལ་རྩེ་གཅིག་ཏུ་གཞོལ་བར་མཛད་ནས་ལྷག་པའི་ལྷ་རབ་འབྱམས་ཀྱི་ཞལ་གཟིགས་ཤིང་ལུང་བསྟན་དུ་མ་ཐོབ། འདིར་སྣང་གི་འཁྲུལ་པ་ཀ་དག་སྤྲོས་བྲལ་གྱི་དབྱིངས་སུ་རང་སར་དག་ནས་ཆོས་སྐུ་ཀུན་ཏུ་བཟང་པོའི་རྒྱལ་ཐབས་ལ་མངའ་དབང་འབྱོར་ཞིང་། དཔལ་ཡུལ་རྣམ་རྒྱལ་བྱང་ཆུབ་ཆོས་གླིང་གི་ཤར་ཐད་ཀྱི་རི་སུལ་དུ་བཞུགས་ཏེ། བཙུན་མའི་འཁོར་སློབ་མང་དུ་འདུས་པ་རྣམས་ལ་ཆོས་ཀྱི་འཁོར་ལོ་བར་མེད་དུ་བསྐོར་བར་མཛད་ཅིང་རིམ་གྱིས་དགོན་སྡེ་ཆགས་པས་ཇོ་དགོན་གདོང་ཞེས་པའི་མཚན་དང་། ན་བཟའ་དམར་པོ་མནབ་པའི་ཨ་ནེ་ཇོ་མོས་གང་བས་གྲོང་དམར་སྟེང་ཞེས་མིང་དེ་དག་དེ་ནས་ཐོགས་པར་བྱུང་། མདོར་ན་རྗེ་བཙུན་མ་འདི་ཉིད་ཀྱིས་བཤད་སྒྲུབ་ཀྱི་འཁོར་ལོ་གཉིས་ལྡན་གྱི་གོ་ནས་འཁོར་གདུལ་བྱ་དུ་མ་བསྐྱངས་ཏེ། མཁས་གྲུབ་གཉིས་ལྡན་གྱི་གོ་འཕང་ལ་མངའ་དབང་འབྱོར་བའི་འཁོར་དུ་མ་སྨིན་པར་མཛད་ཅིང་། ཞིང་འདིའི་གདུལ་བྱ་དེ་ཙམ་གཟིགས་ནས། མཐར་ཆོས་ཉིད་ཞི་བའི་དབྱིངས་སུ་གཤེགས་ནས་གདུང་ཞུགས་ལ་འབུལ་སྐབས་དབུ་ཐོད་ནམ་མཁར་ཡར་ནས་སྔར་རིག་འཛིན་ཆེན་པོའི་ཆོས་གསུང་ཡུལ་གྱི་ཆོས་ཁྲི་སྟེང་གི་སྤང་ཁར་བབས་པས། དེ་ཕྱིན་ཆད་དམ་པའི་སྐྱེས་ཆེན་དག་གི་སྐུ་གདུང་ཞུགས་འབུལ་བྱ་ཡུལ་དང་དུར་གླིང་དུ་གྱུར། དབུ་ཐོད་དེ་སྒྲུབ་ཆེན་བྱིན་འབེབས་སྐབས་ཐོད་གཡབ་མཛད་ཅིང་ད་ལྟ་ཡང་བཞུགས་ཤིང་། ཁོང་གྱི་རྣམ་འཕྲུལ་བག་ཆགས་སད་པའི་ལས་ཅན་མ་ཞིག་ད་ལྟ་ཨ་རིའི་རྒྱལ་ཁབ་ཏུ་འཁྲུངས་ཡོད་པར་ཐོས་སོ།།

 Jetsunma Ah Kham Lhamo

Birth

 Ah Kham Lhamo, the emanation of Noble Tara, the mother of all Buddhas, took the form of a human being, in Palyul Achog Dro Lhae, a province of Dokham Bubor Gang, the land with complete signs of the ten virtues. Her father, Dorjee, was from the noble family of  Mutsa Ga, and her mother, Guru Tsho, was a Wisdom Dakini. She was born just after the second half of the 11th Rabjung cycle, which is around the end of the 17th century. At her birth, there were many amazing signs. She was the younger sister of Rigzin Kunzang Sherab.

 Education

 At a very early age, she was able to master reading and writing without any difficulties. On many occasions she accompanied Kunzang Sherab, to receive teachings from the Great Terton Migyur Dorjee, Karma Chagmed (who was the emanation of Chokro Luyi Gyeltshen), and many other great accomplished scholars and mahasiddhas of that time. Under their guidance she mastered the sutras and the tantras–especially the infinite tantras–and cleared any misunderstanding of them, with her wisdom of hearing and wisdom of contemplation.

 Practices and retreats

 Then she wandered in many sacred places and practiced with single-pointed perseverance. She had the visions of unfathomable deities and received many revelations from them. She purified the delusion of ordinary perception into the expanse of the primordially pure state, free of all elaborations, and gained mastery over the kingdom of Dharmakaya Samantabadra.

 Benefiting Beings

 She resided on the hill to the east of Palyul Namgyal Jangchub Choling where she constantly turned the Wheel of Dharma to her disciples of nuns. Gradually, it became a nunnery and was called Jo Gon Dong. Because the place was filled with nuns in their maroon robes, it was also called Upper Red Village. Thus the place got its names.

 Conclusion

 In brief, Jetsunma cared for and benefited countless beings to be tamed by the wheel of teachings and practices.  She ripened the minds of her followers, and many became great scholars and accomplished practitioners.

 Finally, seeing that her benevolent activities had come to an end, she entered the peaceful state of dharmadhatu. When her holy body was cremated, her skull jumped up in the sky and fell on the throne that Rigzin Kunzang Sherab used to give teachings. This site later became the cremation ground of the holy lamas.

The skull was used to invoke the blessings of the deities during the Drubchen practices. It is still with us.

 I have heard that her emanation, a lady with fortunate karma, who had awakened in the experience of the past, has been born in America.

 This is the life and liberation of Jetsunma Ahkon Lhamo, from the History of the Palyul Lineage written by Tulku Thubten Palzang.