If your mind is constantly preoccupied by your money and possessions, you are in reality only preparing the ground for rebirth as a spirit tortured by hunger and thirst. If your thoughts are obsessed with your family and loved ones, you are only strengthening the pangs of separation you will suffer when you die. But to have devotion constantly in your mind will endow you with lasting serenity and satisfaction. Remembering even the name of your spiritual teacher is enough to completely transform your perceptions. Visualizing the guru above the crown of your head, even for an instant, can dissipate the veils of illusion. Devotion is the ring that allows the hook of the teacher’s compassion to pull you out of the mire of samsara.
Enlightenment, inherent though it is in the mind, seems so difficult to unveil. But if you develop fervent devotion and fuse the guru’s enlightened nature with your ordinary mind, enlightenment can be realized. Truly, to meditate on the benevolent teacher is a spiritual practice more profound than any other.
- Dilgo Khyentse, excerpt from our book of the week “The Hundred Verses of Advice”
Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche (1910–1991) was a highly accomplished meditation master, scholar, and poet, and a principal holder of the Nyingma lineage. His extraordinary depth of realization enabled him to be, for all who met him, a foundation of loving-kindness, wisdom, and compassion. A dedicated exponent of the nonsectarian Rime movement, Khyentse Rinpoche was respected by all schools of Tibetan Buddhism and taught many eminent teachers, including His Holiness the Dalai Lama. He tirelessly worked to uphold the Dharma through the publication of texts, the building of monasteries and stupas, and by offering instruction to thousands of people throughout the world. His writings in Tibetan fill twenty-five volumes.