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Shyalpa Tenzin Rinpoche Gives a Teaching in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

On July 4, His Eminence Shyalpa Tenzin Rinpoche graciously bestowed a teaching for fortunate students in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Rinpoche welcomed new and old friends, and began by introducing Buddha’s story of the path to enlightenment.

Here are highlights from Rinpoche's teaching:

"The Buddha realized his true potential and shows us that we all have the potential to achieve enlightenment. We become enlightened when we accumulate good karma and purify our unwholesome actions and negativity. Buddha taught us that the meaningful savior is not outside of us, but resides within. Buddha had the courage to empower us and show us that we do not need to depend on any external support. In this way, the Buddha fearlessly challenged the beliefs of his time. This is a sign of the true courage and freedom that this great being achieved. 

"The Buddha taught us philosophy. If you practice and embody this philosophy, it becomes a way of life. It’s a lifestyle choice and not religious belief. The Buddha is the only one who taught the truth of emptiness in depth. Even scientists cannot find a basis for their science without an understanding of emptiness. They are going back to zero. Buddha started from zero, so to speak. 

"Unless we apply Buddha’s precious teachings in our life, in my view, we are all just pretending to know about Buddhism. Applying the Buddha’s teachings in our lives is the real practice. Buddha taught us to never deceive ourselves; for all of us, the greatest demon is self-deception. There’s no guarantee that any of us will live to see tomorrow, but we make plans for the next 50 years. This shows we are not really listening to Buddha, even though we think he was great. Buddha never wished to be great. His only wish was that we never take our precious human lives for granted.

"Not taking anything for granted, you have true compassion. Whomever you meet, you see the glow in their eyes and the preciousness of life, so you respect and embrace others. You see vulnerability in everyone, even the rich and the powerful. No one can be young or fit or beautiful forever.

"Some of us go to war to achieve glory.  If we could remain on this earth forever, we wouldn’t need glory. Because we can’t live forever, we go to war to secure our names in history. Some do business day and night, not realizing that they can’t take a single penny with them when they die. They only enslave themselves with material wealth. What price do we pay? We sell our lives very cheaply. This is indeed self-deception. To be honest is to see reality as it is, without changing, fabricating, or glorifying anything.

"Buddha’s teaching is not something you practice only in cave or a temple, rather, you embody the teachings in day-to-day life. You feel the teachings, and allow everyone to feel your goodness. When you shine in this way, you are practicing the Buddha’s way. The Buddha’s way is to become all-inclusive, accommodating any thought, any feeling, any company, and any situation.  We tend to accept what is positive and reject what is negative. When someone points out our weakness, we get defensive. If someone gives us praise, we relish it. We limit our growth by only hearing what we want to hear. We need to be wise enough to embrace whatever helps us to grow.

"Emptiness is not nothingness, which is a state of dullness. Emptiness is the lack of self-existing identity. We cannot solidify anything in emptiness. This is the beauty of emptiness. Whatever you try to solidify falls apart. In a mass of atoms there seems to be solidity, but atoms are moving in space. Atoms have east, west, north, and south; therefore, atoms are not indivisible. Emptiness gives us the true freedom of never needing to solidify any thought, feeling, or perception.

"You have the freedom to allow everything to remain as it is.  You are like a farmer who plows the field all day and comes home tired. His work is finished. He has a good meal and is happy to relax without a care in the world. This is the freedom of resting in true contentment. This way is Buddha’s greatest gift to us: Liberation from suffering. 

"Today I share the Buddha’s blessing with you, and you are able to hear the Buddha’s teachings. This is our good karma, so we should treasure our lives in this way and live life according to Buddha’s example and realization." 

Finally, Rinpoche introduced the Mahasiddha Sanctuary for Universal Peace, which will be built in the Buddha’s birthplace in Lumbini, Nepal. This project will honor the Buddha and channel peaceful and positive energy for everyone on earth.