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To Never Mentally Abandon Sentient Beings – Part II of Series

Submitted by on Wednesday, 20 October 20102 Comments

By Bardor Tulku Rinpoche

Among the commitments regarding the generation and cultivation of bodhichitta, bodhichitta: the most important one is never mentally abandoning any sentient being.

Not mentally abandoning sentient beings does not simply mean not generating the intention to never ever help any being whatsoever. No one generates that. It means not mentally abandoning any one sentient being. And we are in some danger of doing that especially when we become angry. Jamgon Kongtrul Lodro Thaye, in discussing the training of bodhichitta, said that the greatest danger for practitioners is to become so resentful of someone else in a situation of conflict that they think, “Even if in the future I have a chance to help you, I will not do so.”

Simply getting angry does not constitute mentally abandoning beings, but when we form the resolution to never help them in the future, that is mentally abandoning them.

When we experience conflict with others, we need to remember that there is a great deal of difference between dharma and practitioners of dharma. Dharma itself is pure and unafflicted. Whether we are thinking of dharma as tradition (the Buddha’s teachings) or dharma of realization, they are both free of affliction. So when someone acts inappropriately and we become outraged, or we think they are acting inappropriately and we become outraged, we first of all have to remember that they are acting in contravention of dharma, not in accordance with it. If they are fellow practitioners, then this should inspire our compassion rather than our resentment, because they are acting against the course of what they have chosen to do with their life.

If you can view it that way, then instead of feeling so much resentment towards the person, you will make the compassionate aspiration that you will be able to help them in the future. In that way a situation of potential conflict can become a source of great compassion that will fuel your bodhichitta.

Read the first blog in the series from a teaching on The Commitments of the Bodhisattava Vow.

Second blog from a teaching on The Commitments of the Bodhisattava Vow given by Bardor Tulku Rinpoche at Kunzang Palchen Ling in May, 2010. Translated by Lama Yeshe Gyamtso, transcribed by Alan McCoy, edited by Basia Coulter, adapted with permission by Annie Bond. Copyright 2010 Bardor Tulku Rinpoche and Peter O’Hearn. All rights reserved. Please do not reprint without permission.

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