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Buddhadharma : Summer 2013
SUMMER 2 0 1 3 BUDDHADHARMA: THE PRACTITIONER’S QUARTERLY 27 T he purpose of training in devotional meditations and prayers to great masters such as Guru Rinpoche is not to please them or induce favors for your personal gain. It is solely for training and transforming your mind into positive thoughts and blessed expressions so that your life will advance naturally and you will be able to serve many with positive and joyful force. Whatever you see and think, that is what you will become. In this meditation you visualize Guru Rinpoche in his pure land as the embodiment of all the enlightened ones and pray to him with total devotion. Then you receive the four levels of empowerments from Guru Rinpoche as his blessings. You unite your mind with his enlightened wis- dom and rest there, in the state of intrinsic awareness in which there is no duality, concept, or sensation. The following description explains the stages of the meditation in greater detail. Visualizing Guru Rinpoche and His Pure Land Meditations should always start with the right intention. Think, “I am going to meditate for the benefit of all the infinite beings.” In front of you, visualize Guru Rinpoche in his Zangdok Palri pure land. See all the details clearly and brilliantly as real and remember their symbolic meanings as much as possible. Then see, think, feel, and trust strongly from the bottom of your heart that this is the actual presence of Guru Rinpoche and his pure land. Guru Rinpoche is the embodiment of all the buddhas, bodhisattvas, and enlightened masters. His love is unconditional, whether you are a good person or bad. He has boundless power to fulfill your needs, if you are mentally and karmically open. It is important to realize that Guru Rinpoche is not another person, but rather the enlightened qualities of your own mind’s nature reflecting in front of you as Guru Rinpoche. It’s like seeing your face looking back at you in a mirror. True Blessings In this commentary on a traditional Guru Rinpoche visualization, the contemporary Dzogchen master Tulku Thondup Rinpoche reveals the deep nontheistic essence of Vajrayana practice. We receive the true blessings of the enlightened ones when our mind and theirs become one. (Opposite) Guru Rinpoche, also known as Padmasambhava (detail) TULKU THONDUP is a Buddhist scholar and master in the Nyingma tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. His books include Incarnation and The Healing Power of Loving-Kindness (Shambhala). Originally from Tibet, he has lived in Cambridge, Massachusetts, for the past thirty years. PHOTO / MICHAEL KRIGSMAN ALL THANGKAS COURTESY OF SHECHEN MONASTERY