Teachings in Zanskar
Padum, Zanskar, Ladakh, UT, India – In Zanskar this morning, before he walked from his residence to the teaching pavilion, His Holiness the Dalai Lama met representatives of the Kargil District Authorities.
“Because the people of Zanskar and Ladakh have placed their faith and trust in me,” he told them, “I have a responsibility to do whatever I can to help them. And the best way I can do that is by giving teachings for their benefit. However, listening to teachings is only helpful if we also try to put them into practice, which is what I have tried to do throughout my life. The key point is to cultivate a warm heart and achieve peace of mind.”
His Holiness gave bodhisattva vows to all those present and led them through the visualisations of the all-encompassing yoga mind, which focuses on combining a warm heart and the awakening mind of bodhichitta with insight into emptiness. He emphasized the importance of acquiring a good understanding of what the Buddha taught by examining it in the light of reasoning.
His Holiness disclosed that the teachings today were being attended not only by human beings, but also by other invisible beings—gods and goddess, local deities, landlord spirits and even ghosts, who are generally considered to be harmful. He encouraged those beings too to develop bodhichitta and the wisdom understanding emptiness and urged them to be kind to human beings and to avoid doing them harm.
His Holiness made clear that the Buddhism does not accept segregation in terms of race, caste or gender. He declared that in terms of Buddha nature and our potential to become a Buddha, we are all equal. As human beings we have the wherewithal to cultivate a good heart and an understanding that being dependent on other factors everything is empty of inherent existence.
As he came to the end of his brief talk, His Holiness advised the audience again to practise as he has taught. He mentioned how pleased he was to be back in Zanskar and acknowledged the presence of benevolent protector deities. In conclusion he stated that his principal advice was to be warm-hearted and of benefit to others.
Finally, the Abbot of Gyutö Tantric Monastery, Geshé Lobsang Khedrup, led a brief prayer ceremony for His Holiness’s on behalf of the Zanskar Buddhist Association and the All Zanskar Gonpa Association, District Kargil. Among the prayers recited were the Invocation of the Sixteen Arhats and the Long-Life Prayer composed by His Holiness’s Senior and Junior Tutors.