Friday, December 24, 2010

Geshe Khamlungpa said.....

Here's my Christmas/New Year message to all my students and others.....

As it is so very difficult to obtain a life of leisure and opportunity, guard moral practice as you would your eyes.  As it is not certain when your illusory body will be destroyed, practice the Dharma with body, speech and mind.  As impermanent virtuous work is ineffectual until dedicated, make heartfelt prayers for the benefit of all living beings.  As all that is impermanent is illusory, abandon attachment, not holding anything as truly existent.

With much love and many, many, many prayers for your long life, good health and success in all your Dharma work......

Monday, November 15, 2010

November Course Kopan Monastery

The course has started and it is busy.  I am leading the morning and afternoon meditations and have interviews with the students during the lunch break.  Somehow I thought that would leave me lots of free of time for my own practice, but this is reality, ha ha!  The course seems to be going well.  Venerable Steve is a knowledgeable teacher with training in Tibetan monasteries but also with experience of teaching in the west.  We are very fortunate to have such a qualified teacher.  He also has a good sense of humour and I very much enjoy talking to him.

Unfortunately, I received very sad news yesterday that Alejandra Sarmiento from Guadalajra is in hospital very sick, paralyzed down one side, and her son, Osel is of course, terribly upset.  I would request you to include them in your prayers and pujas.  Thanks so much.

That's all my news for now.  I probably won't write again until the end of the course.  I will be attending His Holiness's teachings in Sarnath and then teaching in Root Institute, Bodh Gaya, from end of January to the end of February.  Take care and remember to put the teachings into practice.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Dhaka

My first teaching is tonight and then all day tomorrow and Saturday.  They are expecting 30 or so people, some Bangladeshi, so that is wonderful for a fairly new group.  All thanks to Laura's energy in putting out the word.
Just received a photo from my "minder" in Bunbury - Michael.  He did a truly great job organising food, people, and whatever needed to be done during the time I was there (including driving me for many hours to places like Dunsborough and Denmark).  When he saw this photo, he realised how much bigger than me he is - he is tall!
 

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Heart Advice of the Kadampa Masters

As Shantideva said in the Bodhicaryavatara:

If one who is influenced by fettering passions
Will even kill himself,
How can it be
That he will not harm others?

Influenced by fettering passions
He will destroy himself and others, too.
If I am angry and have no compassion,
I am worse than he.

"The third meditation of patience is on teacher and disciple.  If there is no lama to impart instruction, there can be no vow.  If there is no teacher to explain the Dharma, there can be no realization.  Similarly, if there is no enemy who harms you, there can be no practice of patience.  Thus, feel that those who abuse you are the teachers of patience.  Be happy at this opportunity and concentrate on repaying their kindness.  Meditating that you are a disciple being taught patience, do not be angry."


Monday, October 25, 2010

Bangkok

Bangkok at first sight seemed fairly similar to my last visit.  However, I slowly realised that the water level is very high and many people are really suffering from floods within the city.  There is more rain predicted so the danger has not passed.  I am enjoying a bit of relaxation (apart from many looks from people wondering what I am!) and tomorrow on to Dhaka and some teachings. 

Monday, October 18, 2010

Bunbury-Denmark-Bunbury

On the weekend, Michael one of my past students from Medicine Buddha in Kopan, drove me down to Denmark on the coast, which took four hours and I taught all day Saturday and Sunday on Peaceful Living, Peaceful Dying.  It was a very enthusiastic crowd with lots of questions and feedback.  Tonight we have the last of my formal teaching in Bunbury.  Thursday is a meditation evening and Saturday morning again meditations based on Peaceful Living, Peaceful Dying.  

A good friend of mine, Gonpo la from McLeod Ganj, HP, India has just started his own website, which is very nice, if you are interested in natural healing, he is wonderful.  The site is:  www.gonpotherapy.com

Sunday I fly to Bangkok, then on to Dhaka and a few days of teaching on Destructive Emotions and then to Kathmandu where I am leading the meditations on the November course.  

Take care, much love and remember to Open Your Heart!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Bunbury

Since arriving I have taught a reiki course, Peaceful Living, meditation for busy people and today, the funniest day, Dorje Khadro fire puja in the rain! Next weekend I teach in Denmark. Back to Bunbury for a few days and then the flight to Bangkok.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Hello Down Under

Well, again, I could give many excuses why this blog is late, but let's not bother!  After nearly 24 hours of travel I have arrived in Perth, Australia.  The worst part is always the customs here and whether I have items made of wood, bone etc.  Michael and his wife along with another student met me at the airport and soon I was at home.  Lots of chat, good dinner and now catching up on emails before an early night.  Tomorrow we drive to Bunbury and my teachings begin.  At the end of this month I will be giving some teachings in Dhakka, then back to Nepal and the November course.  January/February 2011 I am sure I mentioned will be spent in Root Institute, Bodh Gaya teaching some Reiki courses and two Dharma courses together with my Dharma sister, Ani Rita.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Please open YOUR heart!

The two courses in Spain, from the feedback I received, were useful for the participants and it seems successful.  We raised some money for the Kopan nuns, which always pleases me....

I just heard from a friend of mine who is the Director of Root Institute in Bodh Gaya and she urgently needs a volunteer for the office and also people to help with meditations.  If you are interested to help please either email me, or Root Institute.  Thanks so much.

I will be in India for three weeks and then off to the Hospice of Mother Tara in WA, Australia for a month.  Returning to Dhakka for a few days teaching and then Kopan and the November course.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Hello from Doha!

I am really sorry the posts have been few and far between.  A few excuses include the very slow and difficult line at Kopan but more than that would be how busy I was at Kopan.  There was little space between the courses and when I did have time off the broadband was either off, or too slow.  Many people came for the courses and now BodhiTV have made a DVD of Healing Disturbing Emotions which is on sale in Kopan already.  We hope to make it available through the Kopan webshop.  I am now on my way to Spain for a course on the 8 verses of thought transformation followed by a course for business people.  Then returning to India for a short break before Australia. 
My health is fine, thanks to those of you asking and I hope and pray you are all well and happy and putting the Dharma into practice.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Monsoon continues

Today we had our first real downpour of the monsoon.  Now we are back to sunny with clouds in the afternoon, not difficult to manage as long as you have a big umbrella!  So, to update you on what has happened since the last course.  Around 25 people participated in Peaceful Living and I must say the course became very subdued and quiet near the end.  Perhaps it is as the Kadampa lamas used to say that meditating on death is extremely important for change to happen.  When Khen Rinpoche came for Question and Answer, KR asked the students which questions do you have, and they just stared at him, quietly, not looking like they had any questions!  I got worried!!  Anyway, then KR gave a wonderful teaching on the whole path, gave oral transmissions of mantras and asked all the people in the room to work for world peace. 

We start the Medicine Buddha retreat today and it is full.  People are coming from all over the world and some are even having obstacles to get here, which I always think is very beneficial.  Following the retreat is Reiki for beginners and Reiki Two for more advanced students.  Then a Discovering Buddhist course for 7 days and a Tara retreat and then my teaching time in Kopan is finished.  I will be traveling to Spain to teach a thought transformation course.

The next time I give you news will be at the end of the Medicine Buddha retreat.  Don't forget on the 15th July is a Wheel Turning Day, the merit is multiplied and it is International Sangha Day.  Take care of your monks and nuns!  Thanks and much love.


Friday, June 25, 2010

Kopan Monastery

We had a busy time with the Healing Destructive Emotions course.  Around 40 people working hard on their emotions, with some good positive results.  Khen Rinpoche came on the last day and gave a really inspiring talk and answered many questions.  Following that we had a Reiki course which was over-subscribed and people seemed to be happy and full of energy at the end.  Today is an auspicious day as it is the full moon and an eclipse, I heard.  Do your best to accumulate positive energy today and at the end of the day please dedicate to all suffering sentient beings that they may never suffer ever again.  

Thank you.

Our next course is Peaceful Living, Peaceful Dying for seven days from the 30th June. 

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Donations - paypal

As some of you know, I have been using paypal for many years.  It was a useful way to receive donations and disburse to various good causes.  However, recently, paypal has changed it's rules and it has become difficult for me to receive money this way.  I am trying to resolve the problem, but right now, if you want to make a donation for anything, please let me know and we can do through bank transfer.

Monday, May 31, 2010

Kathmandu Nepal

I have received some emails from concerned people wondering whether it is safe to travel to Kathmandu at this time.  Therefore, I contacted Kopan Monastery and asked them about our safety and they have assured me there are no problems affecting the monastery, it is only a political problem and now that seems to have been sorted out for a while.  Please rest assured that if there is anything disturbing about the situation in Nepal, I will post it on my blog immediately.  With much love, Venerable Namgyel.

Monday, May 24, 2010

BodhiTV

Just a quick note to tell you that the second part of the video series, taught in Kopan, has just been put on the BodhiTV site (see previous blog note).....love, Venerable.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Great News fro Nepal!

One of my friends, Mausham Shakya, recorded some of my teachings in Kopan last year and they have just been put on Mausham's site.  They will also be broadcast on public TV in Nepal.

Here is the link:  http://www.bodhitv.com/view/76/opening-the-doors-to-mahayana-dharma/

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Helsinki-London-Mumbai

I must confess that I felt some trepidation about leaving Mexico, 28C and traveling to Helsinki where it was minus 8C.  However, when I arrived it had warmed up to around zero in the day!! The warmth of the people and the response to the teachings more than made up for the cold.  Stina and Eeva went more than out of their way to make sure I was well taken care of.  Stina gave up her flat and kept taking me to really nice restaurants.  Eeva also made sure all big and small details were covered for the retreat outside of Helsinki.  I very much hope I can return to Helsinki and continue teaching the students there.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Xalapa-Mexico City to Helsinki

Nearly two weeks of teachings, taught at the public university today, many people turned up and we ended on a high in the Xalapa Centre today with teachings on tong len.  I feel very satisfied that this long tour has been beneficial from many points of view but now I feel I need a few days rest, but won't get it in Mexico City as it is going to be busy there with many meetings. 

Helsinki then on to India.  Won't be in touch for a while, so please put into practice the Dharma.  That makes your life totally beneficial.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Vera Cruz-Xalapa

Hi all - just finished Vera Cruz which was hectic.  We enjoyed a weekend retreat on lam rim, which seemed to be enjoyed. Just arrived in Xalapa and after Mexico City.  Just heard marvellous news that I am leading the meditations for the November course in Kopan Monastery.  More news soon!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Meeting with the Governor of Durango

The Governor offered me extremely nice and meaningful presents and then I promptly offered them to Kyabje Zopa Rinpoche, as a means of creating an auspicious occasion.  Hope I was successful!

Durango-Ags-Durango-Guadalajra

It has taken me a little time to sit down and write some news for you all.  The time in Durango was busy, as I previously said, with both public talks of nearly two hours on television and then repeated on television.  There was an enormous response.  During lunch with some important people from Durango, I mentioned that perhaps Durango needed a stupa in order to change the energy of negativity to positive.  This was received very enthusiastically by non-Buddhists and the suggestion was put to the Governor.  The Governor then said he wanted to meet me, but unfortunately on the day it was supposed to happen, there was a security crisis (also proving the need for a stupa!).  So, I drove in pouring rain to see a potential site in a park that the Government would like to offer for the stupa, then drove over six hours to Aguascalientes, taught Living Peacefully, Dying Peacefully to a big crowd of over 50 people, heard Martha resign as the Director and Victor appointed as the temporary Director, then drove back to Durango on Sunday evening, met the Governor on Monday and we put the project to him.  He was very kind and said many complimentary things, and said he liked the project very much and it would be put to the Municipal Government as a proposal.  Then we drove to Guadalajara which is many hours away and then I gave a teaching on Thursday night on Forgiveness.  Friday and the weekend we had a Tara retreat.  Sunday evening Refuge and Bodhisattva vows.  Monday we met my friend who owns the beautiful restaurant where I took the photograph with the Buddha last time.  Today I have some meetings and then I leave tomorrow for Serlinpa and Destructive Emotions.  Then Vera Cruz and a retreat, plus Reiki for beginners, then Xalapa and 37 Practices of a Bodhisattva.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Kopan calendar

Hi Everybody, I am very busy, as usual, in Durango, north Mexico, with TV and radio appearances plus two public talks and two retreats.  However, I have managed to work out the dates with Kopan for the next monsoon.  Please look at my google calendar for the details.  See you all soon!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Guadalajara




The Director of Khamlungpa Centre, Guadalajara, invited me for a farewell lunch at a restaurant in the city and on my way out of the door, surprise, look at the photo!  I also met the owner, who is an extremely nice man.  I am now in Durango and have started the teaching programme here with a public talk - we had over 200 people on a freezing cold night.  This evening we start a weekend retreat on the 12 links. 

Sunday, January 17, 2010

An image of Guru Devotion





Lama Zopa Rinpoche exhibiting his superlative Guru Devotion for Geshe Sopa (Wisconsin University) and this photograph was taken at Maitripa University, Portland.

Lama Zopa Rinpoche


A beautiful poster from Rinpoche's previous visit to Guadalajara in Mexico.

A wonderful new book from Rinpoche....

I am very fortunate to have been offered a copy of a book published by the Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive. The book is entitled “The Heart of the Path” by Lama Zopa Rinpoche, edited by my dear friend Ven. Ailsa Cameron.

Here is an extract, to encourage you to buy this book immediately! Page 21:


How does this power of the guru come about? It is a dependent arising; it comes about through causes and conditions. Phenomena exist in dependence upon many factors and each phenomenon has its own nature, power and function. The power created by the meeting of the guru and a disciple is a dependent arising, like two atoms meeting to produce nuclear power or two batteries meeting to produce a charge. For example, a flashlight needs two batteries to produce light; one battery is not enough but if we align the positive and negative ends of two batteries, light is produced.

How does that person become the most powerful in our life? It happens the moment we make a Dharma connection with him. The moment we establish Dharma contact with someone with the recognition of a guru-disciple relationship, that person becomes the most powerful object in our life, more powerful than numberless buddhas. Once we recognize that person as our guru, the one we will rely upon to guide us to the happiness of future lives, liberation and enlightenment, and ourselves as his disciple, that person – whether he is an enlightened or ordinary being, lay or ordained, Tibetan or Western, male or female – becomes the most powerful object for us. So, it’s a mental thing. The power is created by our making that decision to recognize someone as our guru and then making Dharma contact, not from whether or not the person is an enlightened being. The moment that person becomes our guru, he becomes the most powerful being in our life, even if he is not a buddha or even a bodhisattva but just a very ordinary being.


I have arrived in Gudalajara, Mexico and we start the teaching programme this Thursday for two weeks and then on to Durango. I am well, my arm is receiving physiotherapy which helped enormously, but still it is going to take more time to heal completely. With much love from Venerable.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Christmas retreat in Serlinpa

There was a surprising number of people for the Christmas/new year retreat and then an even bigger crowd for the Reiki class. Two groups came specially from Morelia to attend Reiki and it gave me an opportunity to talk about afflictive emotions. We then spent a couple of nights in Toluca and I was very fortunate to experience a really nice hotel with heating as Toluca is now cold. We drove to Puebla through Mexico City and we are back with Marie Carmen and her great hospitality. Guadalajara is next. Wishing you all the very best for this year. Let's aim for Bodhicitta and Enlightenment!