The Words of My Perfect Teacher (Revised Edition) (Sacred Literature Series)
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A favorite of Tibetans—and of the Dalai Lama himself— The Words of My Perfect Teacher is a practical guide to the spiritual practices common to all Tibetan Buddhist traditions. It is the classic commentary on the preliminary practices of Longchen Nyingthig, a cycle of teachings of the Nyingmapa school. Patrul Rinpoche makes his subject accessible through a wealth of stories, quotations, and references to everyday life, giving the text all the life and atmosphere of a compelling oral teaching.
This second, revised edition (of the book originally published by HarperSanFrancisco in 1994) is the result of a detailed and painstaking comparison of the original Tibetan text with the English translation by the Padmakara Translation Group. The new edition also includes translations of a postface to the text written a century ago for the first printed Tibetan edition by the first Jamgon Kongtrul Rinpoche, and a new preface by Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche.
received the proper lineage transmissions from their teachers, but also, through study and meditation, gained full understanding and realization of the teachings, sought to preserve them by bringing them to India. At the same time, some Western visitors to India began to show an interest in these lamas and their spiritual heritage. Since it had been said by Guru Rinpoche that, of the Buddha's teachings, the Vajrayana would prove especially powerful and effective for individuals living in a time
our sentient existence depends-and as we can never be sure when or where this scarecrow of an illusory body is going to disintegrate, it is important that from this very • Padmasambhava is often referred to as the second Buddha of our era, extending the work of Sakyamuni . .. Such beings are considered to be beyond birth and death. However, like the Buddha Sakyamuni, they choose to die nonetheless to remind beings of impermanence. 43 THE ORDINARY OR OUTER PRELIMINARIES momerit onwards we
sisters, husbands and wives-there is no way we can avoid being separated in the end. We cannot even be sure that death or some other terrible event might not suddenly part us right now. Since spiritual companions, couples and so forth might be split up unexpectedly at any moment, we had better avoid anger and quarrels, harsh words and fighting. We never know how long we might be together, so we should make up our minds to be caring and affectionate for the short while that we have left. As
we let our whole weight crash down at once like a gunny-sack as its sling breaks. As our flesh wastes away, our skin becomes lax and our bodies and faces are covered in wrinkles. With less flesh and blood around them, all our joints become more prominent. Our cheek-bones and all our other bony protuberances stick out under the skin. Our memory declines, and we become dull-witted, deaf and blind. We cannot think clearly and we feel giddy. With the decline of our physical vigour there is little
Although close adherence to the exact words of an original text commands a certain respect in Tibetan circles, we have found that such translations often make ideas which are perfectly lucid and reasonable in Tibetan seem unnecessarily obscure and even bizarre in English. For this book in particular, such a method could never reflect the extraordinary lively vernacular style and humour of the original. So although we have tried to be consistent in our translation of technical terms, we have aimed