22 Jun 2015 Leave a comment
in Uncategorized Tags: 14th Kunzig Shamarpa Rinpoche, 17th Karmapa, 17th Karmapa Trinley Thaye Dorje, Bodhi Path, Karma Kagyu, Kunzig Shamar Rinpoche, Pasadena Bodhi Path, Red Hat Lama, Shamarpa, Tibetan Buddhism
21 Apr 2015 Leave a comment
in Uncategorized Tags: 7 Points of Mind Training, Bird of Paradise Press, Bodhi Path, Concise Lojong Manual, Dechen, Karma Kagyu, Kunzig Shamar Rinpoche, Kunzig Shamarpa Rinpoche, Lama Jampa Thaye, Lojong, Mind Training, Pamela Gayle White, Pasadena, Pasadena Bodhi Path, Red Hat Lama, Sakya, Shamarpa
Pasadena Bodhi Path was delighted and profoundly grateful for the wonderful opportunity and blessings to have been able to host Lama Jampa Thaye for a weekend of teachings. Lama Jampa gave teachings and explanations based on, “A Concise Lojong Manual” by the 5th Shamarpa. Along with the commentary from the text by the 5th Shamarpa, Lama Jampa include instructions and additional commentary given to him by our own, Kunzig Shamarpa Rinpoche shortly before he passed last year. This was indeed a blessing and displayed the transcendence of a great Master’s wisdom, that continues, beyond the illusion of form. Thank you Lama Jampa Thaye!
13 Apr 2015 Leave a comment
Lama Jampa Thaye describes the 14th Gyalwa Shamarpa.
Coming Soon. A Karmapa International Buddhist Institute Production.
26 Feb 2015 1 Comment
in Uncategorized Tags: Aesop's Fables, Bodhi Path, Bodhisa, dharma, Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche, Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche, Kunzig Shamar Rinpoche, meditation group reading, Not for Happiness, Pasadena, Pasadena Bodhi Path, relative happiness, shamar rinpoche, Shantideva, The essence of Buddhism, The Way of the Bodhisattva, Tortoise and the Hare, Tricycle Magazine
I noticed a friend last night at our meditation group reading this book at the break. It was a book I had given him a few months ago. Another friend, who I had also given a copy to, also noticed and a short discussion began about the book. I loved the book. For me, a good kick in the ass when needed. For my friends, a little bit of a demanding read. The title itself shatters whatever grand illusions we have of a spiritual practice. Not for Happiness. Happiness seekers need not apply. But as my teacher said last night, relative happiness. Conditioned happiness. So, for awakening, for enlightenment, for the benefit of beings, should be, I believe, our motivation. Our intention. It is mine for sure. And still a work in progress. My teacher Shamar Rinpoche, a great master who we lost last year, said this to me many years ago when he noticed my urgency in wanting results from practice, “Be like the tortoise, not the rabbit.” I have cherished that teaching ever since. It continually reminds me that it is not necessarily speed, but consistent determination that will benefit us on the path. I also realized this morning that Rinpoche was advising me in the ways of a bodhisattva.
“For those who wish to go across the water,
May I be a boat, a raft, a bridge.”
Even a turtle.
Each step may seem to take forever, but no matter how uninspired you feel, continue to follow your practice schedule precisely and consistently. This is how we can use our greatest enemy, habit, against itself.
– Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche, “Tortoise Steps”
23 Sep 2014 Leave a comment
I am sharing this spectacular group poem that was birthed during the four day Annual Program in Natural Bridge.
In Honor of Shamar Rinpoche, each person was invited to write one line about Rinpoche.
Many did, and then it was fashioned into this poem
Enjoy the Bodhicitta that was flowing all week.
Ruminations of Rinpoche
Manifestor of the rainbow light
Your voice is the whisper of wind in the trees
the warmth of the sun, your smile
A cloud floats with bright clear light across blue sky and melts into its own clarity again
Understand the nature of change—dispel the delusion of perception and conception. This is
Able to obliterate any concept in a single moment
painting with clouds and rainbows
A bird in the sky sees everything and leaves no trace
Unbound Unsurpassed Unforgettable
Oh Bhagawan Ho
My Guru, my glorious Guru
Rinpoche, I bow with deep gratitude for your many blessings
May we take your sudden disappearance, the ultimate teaching of impermanence to heart!
I wish I’d asked you to stay
Your mind, my mind, may there be no separation. Limitlessly vast, spacious, clear
Great blessing, Gentle bliss
Right here, right now
Unbound. Unparalleled. Unborn
Thank you Rinpoche for the methods, strength, and compassion to practice
Sharing your loving essence
Precious jewel of great joy
Thinking of compassion I will stand right behind you
You gave us our teachers, who helped us begin to understand
that you were the supreme teacher
Thank you for everything Sharmapa, including the wonderful blessings!
Through your blessings my heart became a fully opened lotus
Who’d have thought the harmonica could be such a potent tool of the Dharma?
I see your smiling face everyday
In a heartbeat, your Buddha smile was on my lips
Smiling, his eyes, my eyes, meeting…
A warm handshake with a genuine smile
Give love! Share love! Just relax
With a snap of your fingers you rescued us from a meaningless life
You sat before us on a simple cushion and said: “Look at your mind”
A revolutionary Mahamudra master with the presence of a warm, giant cat
I prayed to the light and to goodness for direction
Rinpoche answered…by being Rinpoche!
My heart, my heart
How precious was seeing you in Mexico and receiving your teachings and blessings
or looking up to you on the balcony, from the garden downstairs
The independence of me is my destiny
Everything you said or did was an offer to learn. Thank you Rinpoche
Although your physical presence was not known to me, your radiant energy continues to be
A new chapter in my life has opened, filled with countless treasures to be discovered
We have known each other for many lifetimes
We will know each other for many more
Freedom is the best!
In an instant!
Love, joy and peace is available when the mind stops—they are not emotions
Joyful activity Delightful presence
Thank you for your talks about children, talking to children, and being with my children
We miss you until your return
By the power invested in all of us, may we experience Mahamudra with ultimate ease
Exhausted by concepts is not enlightenment—think it through until the end
You showed me my mind—what a nonconcept
Thank you. Merits gathered under the sun always reflect the sun’s brilliance
So full of everything we could ever need
Pure joy, like a donut peach
Thank you for founding Bodhi Path
Rinpoche you are blessing us through the Bodhi Path Sangha
The Eagle has landed
and all we have now are memories in this collective dream
OK, I’ll behave myself
the Bodhi Path Community
22 Aug 2014 Leave a comment
I was in Nepal recently, for the first time. A pilgrimage to attend my teacher’s final rites and to visit and experience holy sites. Shortly after landing and checking in at the hotel, Ralph my travel buddy, and I went to Boudhanath and did kora as the sun began to settle in for the night. After roughly 15 hours in the air, and 10 hrs in the Abu Dhabi airport, and a lovely drive from the Nepal airport there was a beautiful, magical sense to the place. The chaos and spiritual were in a beautiful dance. No reference. I felt like I had arrived home. In the midst of this experience, Ralph pointed out, with humorous shock, a dog doing his business in the middle of it all as we circumamulated the giant Boudha stupa. To be blunt, taking a shit. He sighed, I smiled. It was perfect as it was. Things as it is. Perhaps this was a glimpse of satori, for me. A thousand thoughts in a moment. A moment of a thousand thoughts. No reference. No sticking. Perhaps an offering to the buddhas. The intimacy with a pure view recognized a connection to awakening, in whatever form. Just a dog taking a shit.
22 Aug 2014 3 Comments
How do I begin to describe the Shamarpa? I leave this question as it is. So it may resonate within our being. I know we can all relate to this question. How do you describe Shamar Rinpoche.
I found Bodhi Path Pasadena in 2005 and began a lifelong friendship and commitment to study and implementing the Buddha’s precious teachings. I quickly took refuge only a few months later, with Dilyag Sabchu Rinpoche. Early the following year I met the Red Hat Lama, Kunzig Shamar Rinpoche. I was in awe and somewhat on shaky ground. Rinpoche seemed amused by my appearance and inquired where I was from. I told him I was from Peru and he proceeded in asking me if I had heard they had just discovered the smallest man in the world there? He seemed very interested and genuine. I was hooked.
Throughout the following years I attended mostly all of Rinpoche’s visits to California and also traveled to Natural Bridge for his annual teachings. I remember having such a warm feeling in my heart when he began to recognize me and remembered my name. Silly confirmation perhaps, of not wanting to be left behind by this great Bodhisattva. My teacher, Khaydroup, said to me once, “Don’t worry, he remembers everyone.” Later on there was no question of this. My meetings with Rinpoche were always a joy. Sometimes brief, sometimes extended. I always felt that Rinpoche was completely authentic when I was around him. No nonsense. He would ask about my practice and even gave a thumbs up when I shared the completion of ngondro. I thought that was cute.
A couple of memories I have about encounters with Rinpoche? Well, first that I remember that Rinpoche didn’t seem to like prostrating to him when we were in his presence. A form of bowing that one performs, laying one’s body completely on the floor in reverence. I remember I tried to always remember his dislike, but sincerely wished to pay my respects to my teacher and a Dharma King. But I worked with this and brought it to the path. I remember one time after seeing him and not prostrating that I didn’t feel good and I promised myself never to let a moment go by when I can prostrate to my Guru. The next time I saw Rinpoche in Menlo Park I remembered this promise as I waited in line to approach him and traditionally offer him a scarf. But again, my mind was so busy, yes, no, yes, no? I resolved to do just one long short prostration and visualize limitless prostrations in one, using the Bodhisattva ideal of big, big, view. So as I approached Rinpoche, I did one long prostration, and as I arose waiting to hear his admonishment for doing this, I was met with the most brilliant smile and warmth. He seemed to have seen what was in my mind and heart. I know he did. He could see everything.
Another time when I met him I shared that I had attended a teaching by a Dzogchen Master. I told Rinpoche I had received an Ati Yoga instruction and had been doing this along with the practices he had given us. Rinpoche said that it was good to get the blessing but that I should not mix. He seemed very determined to get this across to me. I said I would follow his advice and proceeded and let others approach him. Towards the end of the event as the remaining people approached him, I was nearby having a conversation with Lama Jampa. At the conclusion I bid farewell to Lama Jampa and moved to the exit. As I walked past Rinpoche’s seat, he reached out and grabbed my hand, while he was in conversation with a person offering a scarf. He pulled me close, looked at me and said, “Do not seek esoteric teachings.” I can still feel his grasp of my hand. I said, “Ok Rinpoche” and headed home. The event displayed to me how much Rinpoche cared about me, us. I felt great love and devotion.
I will miss my precious teacher very much. But I feel well equipped for the journey ahead. Cheers to the fully-loaded lama. Shamarpa Khyenno!
Love & devotion,