The Nectar of Bodhicitta: Motivations for the Awakening Mind

· Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive

About this ebook

LYWA director Nick Ribush writes:

The story behind this book is that in the early Kopan Monastery courses, Lama Zopa Rinpoche would start his day’s teachings by quoting a verse from Shantideva’s or Khunu Lama Rinpoche’s seminal texts, giving a short teaching on it and then suggesting that students use it to generate a bodhicitta motivation for the day’s activities (mainly teachings, meditations and discussion groups but also ordinary activities such as eating, talking, walking around and so forth). Since those days I’ve always thought that a compilation of these short teachings would make a great book, and finally, here it is.

Editor Gordon McDougall has assembled Rinpoche's teachings into two parts, sorted by author of the verses and arranged thematically.

In Part One, Lama Zopa Rinpoche teaches on selected verses from Khunu Lama Rinpoche's Jewel Lamp, now published as Vast as the Heavens, Deep as the Sea. Lama Zopa Rinpoche advises, "Understanding and constantly reminding ourselves of the skies of benefits that bodhicitta brings is unbelievably worthwhile. This is the overall purpose of Khunu Lama Rinpoche’s book, to cause us to feel inspired and joyful that such a mind is possible."

In Part Two, Rinpoche teaches on verses from the first chapter of Shantideva's Guide to the Bodhisattva's Way of Life. These verses describe the amazing benefits of developing the precious mind of bodhicitta, the supreme cause of happiness for all sentient beings.

About the author

LAMA THUBTEN ZOPA RINPOCHE was born in Thangme, Nepal, in 1945. At the age of three he was recognized as the reincarnation of the Lawudo Lama, who had lived nearby at Lawudo, within sight of Rinpoche’s Thangme home. Rinpoche’s own description of his early years may be found in his book, The Door to Satisfaction. At the age of ten, Rinpoche went to Tibet and studied and meditated at Domo Geshe Rinpoche’s monastery near Pagri, until the Chinese occupation of Tibet in 1959 forced him to forsake Tibet for the safety of Bhutan. Rinpoche then went to the Tibetan refugee camp at Buxa Duar, West Bengal, India, where he met Lama Yeshe, who became his closest teacher.

The Lamas went to Nepal in 1968, and over the next few years built Kopan and Lawudo Monasteries. In 1971 Lama Zopa Rinpoche gave the first of his famous annual lamrim retreat courses, which continue at Kopan to this day. In 1974, with Lama Yeshe, Rinpoche began traveling the world to teach and establish centers of Dharma. When Lama Yeshe passed away in 1984, Rinpoche took over as spiritual head of the FPMT, which has continued to flourish under his peerless leadership.

More details of Rinpoche’s life and work may be found in The Lawudo Lama and on the LYWA and FPMT websites. In addition to many LYWA and FPMT books, Rinpoche’s other published teachings include Wisdom Energy (with Lama Yeshe), Transforming Problems, The Door to Satisfaction, Ultimate Healing, Dear Lama Zopa, How to Be Happy, Wholesome Fear, How to Face Death Without Fear, The Four Noble Truths, Bodhichitta, The Six Perfections, Patience and many transcripts and practice booklets.

GORDON MCDOUGALL first met Tibetan Buddhism in Hong Kong in 1986, where he was the director of Cham Tse Ling, the FPMT center there, for two years. He was spiritual program coordinator of Jamyang Buddhist Centre, London, from 2000 to 2007, working with the resident teacher, Geshe Tashi Tsering, to develop the Foundation of Buddhist Thought. He has also led lamrim courses in Europe and India. Since 2008 he has been editing Lama Zopa Rinpoche’s teachings for Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive and Wisdom Publications.

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