using the arrow buttons.
by clicking on the page.
the page around when zoomed in by dragging it.
the zoom using the slider when zoomed-in.
by clicking on the zoomed-in page.
by entering text in the search field, and select "This Issue" or "All Issues"
by clicking on thumbnails to select pages, and then press the print button.
displays sections with thumbnails and descriptions.
displays a slider of thumbnails. Click on a page to jump.
allows you to browse the full archive.
about your subscription?
Buddhadharma : Fall 2007
buddhadharma| 11 |fall 2007 first thoughts i can’t save you Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche realizes there are limits to his ability to help his students. When I look at my students and observe how enmeshed they are in the circumstances of their lives, I feel responsible as their teacher to help them make progress on the path of liberation. However, I’ve concluded that, like a mother with no arms watching her only child drown, I can only feel compassion. I have no power to save anyone. When I was young and idealistic, I thought I could just grow some arms, even though the teach- ings talk about an armless mother. “That analogy doesn’t really work for me,” I thought. “I can be Superman. I can grow arms and save people.” But now I realize the truth of the analogy. Our life is our own life. No one else can liberate us from our own circumstances. Believe me, I’ve tried hard to save individuals from their enmeshments, and sometimes it just makes things worse. At times when someone isn’t doing well, if they’re going down an icy slope with slick Italian shoes, the best I can do is pray for them. With leather soles, it’s expected that they will fall. They may get up and then fall farther down, slipping deeper into troubled water. Some situations are like this; there’s no way around it. That person has created this situation and is happy with it, so all I can do is have compassion. Pointing at how their decisions will lead to an unfavorable future would be like rubbing salt in a wound. It creates more stress in their life. They may think, “I’m very happy about the situation I’ve chosen. Why should I have to deal with someone else’s disapproval and heed their judgment when I’m so happy?” Person- ally, I can avoid this unnecessary tension. I don’t want it and nobody else wants it either. If I have any power at all, it’s through extending my care through prayers and good intentions. This is where I find myself as a teacher. I hope my students understand this. A student should be aware of every step of a teacher’s development. We can appreciate and learn from this, and then apply the path of maturity to our own lives, in order to become more adult. In the Buddhist teachings, we believe in enlightening ourselves, rather than depending on the grace of almighty external beings. Aside from teaching, I don’t have much per- sonal interaction now with my students, in order that I can spend more time on the cushion pray- ing, not for myself, but for all beings, particularly those I have a connection to. And when I do other practices, I do them to fulfill these prayers. So I hope this method serves better than hanging out in bars and drinking beers with them, or guid- ing them through endless psychological processes. What’s the point of going through a process if it has no end? The only thing to do is bring it to an end through practice on the cushion. BaseD on a taLk PuBLisheD in the CruCiaL Point, FaLL/winter 2006-7, the newsLetter oF mangaLa shri Bhuti. a change of heart Joseph Goldstein on learning to practice unconditional love. When I first began the practice of metta, I had an experience that revealed a lot about my mind and the way I was relating to others. At the time, I was developing loving-kindness toward a neutral per- son, although I wasn’t really sure what a “neutral person” meant. My teacher, Anagarika Munindra, simply said to pick someone nearby for whom I didn’t have much feeling one way or another. I was in India at the time, and there was an old gardener at the little monastery where I was staying. I saw him every day, but I had never really illustrations anthony russo