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Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive
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Bringing you the teachings of Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche. www.LamaYeshe.com.
Bringing you the teachings of Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche. www.LamaYeshe.com.

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How to dedicate your life to others-
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Our lives are short; we do not have much time to realize egolessness, but striving to do so is what differentiates us from animals. Otherwise, how are we different? Animals enjoy the sense world and lead their lives to the best of their ability. Just like ourselves, they like those who feed them and dislike those who beat them. What’s the difference?

Perhaps you think, “Rubbish! I can conceptualize, I can write; I can make money to support and enjoy my life.” But even rats and mice can look after themselves with ego and attachment. They can collect and store food many times their own weight. What about bees? Even though their lives are so short, they collect enough honey to last for maybe hundreds of years. What, then, is the difference between bees and so-called intelligent humans if the mental attitude is the same, where both are living only for sense pleasure? Perhaps bees are even more intelligent than we are—they live such short lives but accumulate vast amounts of what gives them pleasure.

Therefore, I think it’s extremely important that while we occupy these precious human bodies, where intelligence and many other good qualities have come together, we take this opportunity to seek our inner nature and release ourselves from all the problems of mental defilement, which come from our ego. From the time we were born, everything we’ve done has come from our ego, but whatever pleasure we’ve experienced has been so transitory and small. Nevertheless, don’t think, “Oh, I’m too bad; my mind is completely dominated by my ego.” Don’t put yourself down. Instead, be happy to realize what’s happening.
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Whoever we are, of a white, yellow or dark race, whatever our social position, and also all the animals, down to the smallest insect, we all have the feeling that we are a "me". Even if we don’t understand the nature of the “me,” we all know what this me wants: to avoid suffering and obtain happiness. There are extremely varied degrees of suffering, ranging from the smallest worry to certain intolerable and lasting kinds of pain. There are countless kinds, but whatever they are, we try to protect ourselves from them. Animals do the same, in this way they are exactly like us. Only they have no method for doing this. They don’t make plans in advance or look ahead. They try their best to avoid the suffering of the moment and to take the pleasure of the moment. They don’t go beyond this. Therefore, though the basis of our motivation, to avoid suffering and obtain happiness, is exactly the same, our means of avoiding or obtaining it are, in our human case, multiple. Degrees of suffering are infinite, from a mere headache to torture, to mention only physical pain, while the happiness we wish to obtain have just as many appearances. But their basis is the same: happiness, suffering, only the means vary. Then we aggrandize what we call “me.” We want happiness for “my” family, “my” friends, “my” country.
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You see, actually, it has never occurred to our conception of ego, it has never dreamed, that the entire relative character of the I is composite energy, many parts of energy have gathered to become a bubble or some kind of cloud. As a matter of fact, our body is like a cloud—one bunch of clouds come, one bunch of energy comes—this is the body. Each day when you wash some part of the energy goes from the skin; each time you breathe some kind of energy goes out here with the breath. Then you eat and again some kind of energy goes inside. I think you know these kind of things better than I, maybe.

Lama Yeshe
from What is Dharma?
What is Dharma?
What is Dharma?
lamayeshe.com
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If we plant poisonous seeds in the ground, all the trees and fruit become poisonous plants. So, the delusions are like poisonous seeds. From our nonvirtuous thoughts, our actions become nonvirtuous and bring the result of suffering. All the undesirable, ugly objects that cause us to feel unhappiness and suffering when we meet them, come into existence as a result of our actions. It’s the same thing with all the problems in our life. Where do they come from? They come from the nonvirtuous thoughts and actions, which are like poisonous seeds. The various problems of life are like the various poisonous fruits of the tree with branches that have grown from those seeds.

In the same way, all our happiness and all the desirable and beautiful objects that make us feel happy when we meet them, come from the virtuous actions of body, speech and mind. Just as a medicinal tree grows from the medicinal root, fruit and leaves, virtuous karma or action arises from our virtuous thoughts. From this we receive a good result—happiness. So, the key to suffering and happiness depends on the mind. The whole root of suffering and happiness is within our mind.
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Like a magician, our ignorance projects the hallucination of true existence onto everything that is merely labeled by our mind—the I, the action, the object, hell, enlightenment, samsara and nirvana. It projects the hallucination of true existence on the merely labeled I, the merely labeled action, the merely labeled object, the merely labeled hell, the merely labeled enlightenment, the merely labeled samsara, the merely labeled nirvana, the merely labeled happiness, the merely labeled problem. This ignorance creates illusions for us completely in our life. It decorates this hallucination of true existence on every merely labeled thing—the merely labeled I, the merely labeled action, the merely labeled object. It totally creates illusions for us; it completely creates illusions for us.

Lama Zopa Rinpoche
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If you are suffering, take all the sentient beings’ suffering;
May the oceans of sentient beings’ suffering dry up.
If you are happy, dedicate the happiness for others to collect merits;
May skies of happiness be received by others.
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Manifesting among humans, one could appear in some kind of miraculous form, like a rainbow body, but while that would attract attention, it wouldn’t really be of that much benefit. People need to be inspired to follow the path to enlightenment by being able to see that they, too, can become enlightened. To inspire people in this way, one would have to manifest in a form they can relate to—as a person. Then people can think, “I’m a person; she’s a person. I can become like her.” In that way, they open themselves to the teaching. Thus, if the people on Earth at this time were open to benefit, one would manifest as a human teacher.
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Please keep this in your heart. This is most important advice, so keep it in your prayer book. It’s not just to read one time quickly and then throw away. Please don’t do that.
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The bodhisattva sees the crystal nature that exists in each of us, and by recognizing the beauty of our human potential, always has respect.

For the disrespectful mind human beings are like grass, something to be used. ‘Ah, he means nothing to me. Human beings are nothing to me.’
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