We all need knowledge-holders

  When I first met Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche, at Chenrezig Institute in Queensland, Australia, in 1976, I knew I wanted a spiritual path but I didn’t know I needed a spiritual teacher: a mentor, a lama, a guru.   The fact is, whatever we learn, the...

There are two modes of meditation

  There are two modes of meditation. The accomplishment of the first one is single-pointed concentration and the accomplishment of the second is called insight.    What the world vaguely knows as mindfulness is a version of the first mode. And it’s...

What is devotion?

In ordinary life we use the word “devotion.” We’re devoted to our mother, we’re devoted to our children, we’re devoted to our partner. It’s a lovely idea. It says in the dictionary that devotion is “love, loyalty, or enthusiasm for a person. . .” It’s a really nice...

Why do we need a teacher?

Why do we need a spiritual teacher and what is one? The Sanskrit word is “guru” and I believe it implies someone “heavy with qualities” – who doesn’t need someone like that! The Tibetan equivalent is “lama.” They’re “knowledge-holders”: rigzin. We so often mystify all...