Rinpoche in Atlanta

Our Heruka Atlanta Sangha’s group have invited Heruka Institute master Tulku Yeshi  Rinpoche from Seattle Washington to offer us teachings and practicing Lamrim (Tsongkhapa Guru) and Phowa sleeping meditation (Amitabha’s Pureland) as well as voluntarily of students’ Bodhisattva vow. Firstly, the Master ensured us to understand the value of Lamrim. Then by joyfully and patiently doing the meditations we shall gradually experience the fruits of Lamrim’s practice.Eventually we shall attain freedom from all suffering and the remain equanimity and happiness of enlightenment. The schedules for February of 2019 are as follow:

Friday 22nd – Buddhism taking refuge ceremony
Saturday 23rd and 24th – Bodhisattva vow and The Stages of the Path to Enlightenment (Lamrim)
Sunday 24th – Amitabha Amitayus Phowa teaching, guided meditation, and explanations of benefits to take Bodhisattva vow and final ceremony for remaining students.

These teachings includes our reminders of daily practices such as:
Guru YogaThe 6 Perfections Buddhism and the cultivation of characterRecognize our precious human lifePrepare for our deaths and impermanenceThe sufferings from lower realms rebirthRefuge practice and prostationsIn-depth understanding karma (causes and their effects)Develop renunciation for samsara and state of persistently equanimityConstruct our loving kindness minds that all living beings are our mothersAlways kindness to all sentient beingsEqualizing self and othersRecognize disadvantages of egoistic and advantages of altruisticShare our knowledge with others and develop our compassionConsistently practice Great Compassion (Avalokiteshvara) and develop our wisdom (Manjushri)Practice the Four ImmeasurablesPractice of Prostrations to the 35 BuddhasDaily incantations of (Om Mani Padme Hum, Om Ah Ra Pa Za Na Dih, Om Ami Dewa Hrih)
Overall, we were immensely enjoyed all the fruitful sessions of teachings Lamrim and practicings Phowa meditation from our Master Tulku Yeshi  Rinpoche. Our Sanghas believe these courses teachings we pertained from our Master were extraordinarily excellent. We would hope to reconvene with the Master next year again for Heruka Atlanta Sangha’s group to receives Empowerments from Avalokiteshvara and Manjushri Buddhas. We will always remember our Master emphasizes and practices the 4 significant key words such as Harmony, Equality, Balance, and finally Peaceful. 
Gratefully and thankfully to our master Tulku Yeshi Rinpoche,
Heruka Atlanta’s Sangha,
Yeshi Rangrig

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Rinpoche Returns to Heruka Long Beach

Written by Yeshi Tenzin

Namo Gurube! Namo Buddhaya! Namo Dharmaya! Namo Sanghaya! Namo Sakya Muni Buddha!
It’s winter time and holidays season again in America but it’s a great time like a double joy for us to welcome our precious Guru, H.E. Tulku Yeshi Rinpoche to Southern California again. We, Heruka Long Beach and Heruka Ojai, were so happy and so fortunate to have Rinpoche here for 2 weeks from December 19, 2018 to January 02, 2019.
Heruka Long Beach, mainly consists of Vietnamese American Buddhist followers in Orange County and some from nearby counties. Rinpoche had a two day teaching and empowerment for the group. 
The first day event on December 20, 2018 was at Heruka House, Rinpoche taught and reviewed all three main branches of Buddhism: Hinayana – the original branch, Mahayana – developed or sutra branch, and Tantrayana – the most modern or the highest branch. Rinpoche compassionately bestowed the group refuge vows in the Buddha, Dharma, and Shangha to set the foundation, Bodhisattva vows for the higher part, and Vajrayana vows for the upper part. It was good for all to build the foundation, establish the connection, renew and refresh all vows for daily practices and for the path to liberation. Rinpoche then transferred the Vajrasattva empowerment, a very powerful practice to help practitioners purify obstacles. This also supports the practices of other dharma parts like Phowa and/or Bardo meditation. It’s good for us to receive such precious initiation to, learn and get conection to the 100 deities, including 42 in peaceful forms and 58 in wrathful forms. When we are living this precious human life, 42 peaceful deities are in the heart representing Loving Kindness and Great Compassion; 58 wrathful deities are in the brain representing Wisdom. When we die, at the time of death or during the 49 day Bardo, we will see all these 100 deities (Buddhas and Bodhisattvas) one by one. Each will appear to help save us, liberate us from samsara with different lights and luminosities. At that moment, don’t be afraid, just focus, follow, and dissolve into the brightest light with strongest luminosity.
The second day event on December 21, 2018  was at Ms. Vy Yeshi Wangmo’s residence. In the morning Rinpoche gave the group Amitabha empowerment. This general initiation is very important for us to practice Phowa and Bardo meditation because Amitabha Buddha is the most popular and most favorable deity/yidam in both Mahayana and Tantrayana traditions. In the afternoon Rinpoche taught us about six Bardos or intermediate states: 1. the  natural bardo of this life; 2. the painful bardo of dying; 3. the luminous bardo of dharmata; 4. the karmic bardo of becoming; 5. the bardo of meditation ; and 6. the bardo of dreaming. After learning about this subject, Buddhist practitioners understand different states of mind and the truth of death, of birth ad rebirth, and the true value of liberation from samsara or the end of cyclic existence. We need to cut the root cause of suffering or the five poisons of mind to stop being born again and again. Rinpoche gave oral transmission mantras of Sakya Muni Buddha,  Amitabha Buddha, Medicine Buddha, Green Tara Buddha, Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva, and Guru Rinpoche.
For Heruka Ojai, which is the newest group/sangha to be formed and becomes a parts of the International Heruka family. This new part of Heruka family consists of different people from all walks of life, mostly senior Americans living in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties. There are also some members from other counties like Los Angeles, San Bernadino, San Diego, and even from up north San Francisco. Here, Rinpoche had two teaching sessions in the morning of December 29 and December 30, 2018. There are some old members who have attended the two day teaching here in summer 2018. There are some new members who joined the group for the first time. But all were so excited and happy to receive precious teaching by Rinpoche. 
The first day’s session was about Medicine Buddha and Healing Meditation which Rinpoche showed us the true Buddha and power are in our mind. That is the true nature of mind with Loving Kindness, Great Compassion, and Wisdom. The best healing meditation is understanding the truth of reality that is impermanence. All can be free from suffering and be happy if we know, accept, and understand the all things and phenomena come, stay, and go. The second day’s session was on Death, Bardo, and Rebirth. These concepts and philosophies seem to be new with some members of the group but it’s all part of our life, no matter what form we are born in like humans or animals. Death is common that all and everyone of us have learned, known, witnessed or experienced in life. Bardo or the intermediate state is quite new to some people who first have heard or learned about it as this is a specific part in Tantrayana or Tibetan Buddhism. Rebirth is both familiar and new to some people as some have heard, learned, believed, accepted, and recognized. It was an interesting subject for the group so there are many questions to ask or some points to make clear. It seemed to be short for this time’s teaching so there should be another time to teach in details for Heruka Ojai. Rinpoche gave oral transmission the mantra of Medicine Buddha for group.
Along with those important teaching events, Rinpoche had other activities with Heruka members here in Orange County. Concluding two week stay of Rinpoche we, Heruka Long Beach had a long count down new year’s eve with Rinpoche at Yeshi Lhamo’s residence. That was the first time Rinpoche has stayed up late through midnight though it was very cold. The main message Rinpoche wants to send to all Heruka family’s members is that we are Buddhists, practitioners following the same lineage, same Guru, same Buddha, same Dharma, and same sangha. We are born as humans with same suffering in samsara, with same salty tears and red blood. No matter where we are from, East or West, South or North; no matter who we are, Asians or Americans, Tibetans or Vietnamese, we are all equal. So, we all need to respect our Guru, our lineage masters and all masters. We need to take care of our dharma brothers and sisters, love our sanghas and members of each group. We are born to live a happy life, practice dharma for a better life, and be free from suffering when this life ends. 
On be half of Heruka Long Beach and Heruka Ojai, we want to express our deepest gratitude and thanks to our Guru, H.E. Tulku Yeshi Rinpoche for your time, compassion, and wisdom to have been here with us. May you live long to spread precious dharma for the benefits of all. We also want to say big “Thank you!” to Christy Namgyal, Ms. Huong Yeshi Lhamo, Ms. Vy Yeshi Wangmo, Ms. Ngoc Yeshi Dawa, Mr.Billy Yeshi Namkha, Ms. Hong, Mr. Nhan Yeshi Chogan, Ms. Than Phuoc-Heruka House, Ms. Thanh Yeshi Wangmo, Dorjee Mandala, Dolkar Tso, Dargyal Janyang and family, and all members of Heruka family for your valuable support and contributions. Wish you be well and happy always. Happy New Year 2019 to all 14 groups and members of Heruka family!!! 
Let’s rejoice the merits for Rinpoche’s long life and for the benefits of all. Sarva Mangalam. Om Mani Padme Hum.

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Written by Wendy Hung

21號的早上,來自北美不同地區的Heruka 弟子們帶著美麗的鮮花、哈達,以及興奮的心情到達機場迎接仁波切光臨。之後,我們去一家越南餐廳用膳。有些弟子雖然未能參加這次三天的閉關,但仍前來向仁波切問侯。從他們的虔誠舉止跟表情,已經令我生起一種說不出的感動。在座上,雖然大部分都是陌生的面孔,可是卻已經一見如故。其實,他們的友善跟熱情,早在閉關還沒開始之前有所體驗;電郵上互動,交流,並且主動安排機場接送,提供自己居所等,為外地而來的弟子們感到很窩心。


這一所閉關中心名為 Ecodhama Retreat center, 建於1930年,海拔八千多,佔地共一百五十畝,環境安靜又美麗。到達後,Heruka 師兄師姐們展示其團結精神,不用一個小時,便已經各自安頓,並爲接下來的蓮師灌頂作準備。












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Written by Ullas Brian Morales

This year, our Annual Heruka Institute Summer Retreat was in the beautiful mountains of Boulder, Colorado at the Rocky Mountain Ecodharma Retreat Center. It was co-hosted by our wonderful newly made dharma friends at the center and local Heruka Boulder Sangha.

Every morning, Rinpoche took us on these wonderfully magical walks through the forest on 108 acres of the most majestic meadows and forests, with pristine streams and rocky cliffs. We found a lions den cave on one of our dharma walks. We would walk in total silence in the morning after breakfast, as Rinpoche had instructed us to connect with the universe in every step we took, connecting with each particle and step and every breath. Over the course of three days we received the empowerments of Guru Rinpoche, Yeshe Tsogyal, and Machig Labdron Chod.

The wonderful meals and time that we got to spend together was truly amazing. As we finished our empowements on the third day, we all went out on the beautiful deck and lo and behold, a stunning rainbow hallowing the vast mountain around us.

The accommodations of the Rocky Mountain Eco Dharma Retreat Center were very conducive to all of us being able to work together and gather. We enjoyed dharma conversations with Rinpoche in the evenings and a slide show of so many of his experiences, and journeys through Tibet and around the world.

We are so blessed and thankful to have H.E. Tulku Yeshi Rinpoche, such an amazing teacher. We so look forward to your return.

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Written by David Swaintek

The Boulder Heruka Sangha hosted Tulku Yeshi Rinpoche and an eclectic group of yogis, lay practitioners, and monks for a three-day retreat at the spacious and visually stunning Rocky Mountain Ecodharma Retreat Center. We congregated in Boulder at the Jaipur restaurant for some lunch where old friends reconnected and new friends met for the first time. Seekers of enlightenment and samosas arrived from near and far… Boulder, Seattle, Miami, Boston, Toronto and California.

Next stop… Alfalfa’s Market. Our group spread out to secure Tsok, and received an important teaching from Rinpoche… “Yogis eating meat does not make me happy, but yogis drinking red wine makes me very happy!” The congregation happily received this instruction and stocked up on the fruit of the vine. Multiple bottles of water were also purchased as the group heeded warnings about the dramatic change in altitude we were about to experience. Cars stocked with enough suitcases, shrine items, and Tsok to transform the retreat center into Padmasambhava’s Palace, we began our ascent.

The convoy wound its way up three thousand more feet of elevation and majestic mountain scenery before arriving at our home for the next three days. We were greeted by our smiling host Josh. The wisdom of the guru was on display as Rinpoche miraculously transformed Josh’s Helly Hanson logo (“HH”) into an honorific. For the next three days, His Holiness Josh would bestow blessings upon the group in the form of home-cooked vegetarian fare and his miraculous Life Changing Bread. We then unloaded our gear, changed into Dharma-wear, and transformed Zendo into Shrine Room.

We started with a walking meditation in the shadow of the Indian Peaks range. We all did our best to walk with a quiet mind and follow the instruction: “Do not think about walking, think about your feet coming in contact with the entire universe, and with all the sentient beings in the universe.” Rinpoche led the way, ringing his bell, bringing our minds back to the meditation, and ringing out countless blessing. And also dispersing any bears eager to take our “body offering” practice too literally.

The Boulder Sangha’s most auspicious portable throne assembled, thangkas hung, and cushions in place, we received the Guru Rinpoche empowerment. Minds were opened as the various empowerment rituals were performed, mantras were recited, and blessings were bestowed. Musical instruments appeared in the form of gourd banjo, lyre, and laptop as we enjoyed tsok, stories, and vajra songs, and were assured by Aric (MA, Buddhist Studies) that anything by Jerry Garcia was indeed acceptable as dharma music. The empowerment was followed by dinner and an early departure for dream yoga for most as we recovered from the road and acclimated to the altitude.

HH Josh prepared yet another delicious meal for breakfast on Saturday morning as we prepared for another walking meditation. Where Friday’s meditation had gone downhill, Saturday morning’s meditation headed straight up the mountain. Again we were instructed to quiet all speech, quiet the mind, and come in contact with the universe and all sentient beings. We had stunning views of the Indian Peaks, visits from hummingbirds, sunshine and fresh air., all while the lack of oxygen presented ample opportunity to see negativities as helpers. Praise to the guru.

We were joined by our first four legged friend of the weekend as Princess Rainbow Sparkle Pants announced the arrival of several additional members of the Boulder Sangha. Day two would consist of the Yeshe Tsogyal empowerment. Our psycho-organisms flooded with the fire of Vajrayogini as more empowerments were bestowed, rituals performed, mantras received and tsok shared. In between sessions the group members retreated for walks in the woods; meditation and music on the porch; and dream states in their rooms. There were double rainbows and hummingbirds, and we supplicated for an end to jet lag and an occasional hit off the mini oxygen tanks purchased in town.

As the evening wound down, Rinpoche regaled us with a slide show of his life. We were transported from the Indian Peaks to the snow-capped Himalayas, with pictures and stories of lamas and gurus, lakes and palaces, llamas and yaks, and mountains and monasteries. Rinpoche’s travels have taken him from Potala Palace to Pike Place and everywhere in between, and we eagerly listened to the stories of his path as a teacher and guru.

Rinpoche continued to give more informal teachings to the group’s insomniac members late into the night. We received excellent guidance on some of life’s most pressing questions… from business (“Ask somebody who is a businessman in that business, I’m a spiritual teacher”), to love life (“Maybe we should go back to talking about business”), to extensive questions about the different levels of commitment to the dharma (“No, you should absolutely not become a monk”) and a clarification on the Heruka Institute’s policy on yellow shirts (“Not just for monks, also for yogis, and it feels amazing”) we gratefully soaked in as much wisdom as we could each receive.

Sunday morning sunrise brought another auspicious day of dharma activity. We donned our hats and sunglasses and headed out for another walking meditation. Touching the universe of sentient beings was a lot easier this morning, as our hike stayed mostly flat. We passed by meadows and streams and caves. We were joined on our walk by our second four legged friend of the weekend, a black lab eager to disrupt our meditative stability with slobbering requests to toss him a pinecone. A black lab as we prepared to receive teachings on the Wrathful Black Dakini and Mother Machig from Lab… An auspicious sign indeed!

We finished the retreat with the Machig Labdron empowerment and teachings on the Chod practice, one of Rinpoche’s specialties. Members of the sangha ready to receive the transmission for the first time, or reinforcing teachings and transmissions already received, eagerly rattled the damaru, sounded the kangling, and implored the dakinis to rise up, sever the ego, and bless us to see negativities as helpers.

As we prepared to leave the retreat center, HH Josh gave us our closing instructions and a little more information about the future of the Ecodharma retreat center. Rinpoche bestowed gifts and blessings, thanking Josh, Sergio, Aric, Alexandra, and all of the Boulder Sangha for making the retreat possible. We all then transformed into worker dakinis and began to disassemble thrones, secure thangkas, sweep floors, strip sheets… and pack a little tsok for the flight.

Several members of the group were immediately able to put our compassionate practice into action on the way to the airport as we came upon a cyclist who had taken a nasty spill. Bob and Beth, originally upset about the giant gas guzzling Yukon the car rental company had provided, put the teaching into action as that which was originally perceived as negative was loaded up with an expensive road bike, an injured cyclist, a car full of yogis, and driven to the emergency room. She had sustained a serious injury and was admitted for surgery, but afterwards thanked us for our calm energy during an extremely painful car ride and the fortunate circumstances that allowed us to help get her to safety.

With the Summer Retreat now in the books, the Heruka Institute Sangha eagerly awaits the next Dharma adventure!



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Rinpoche Returns to Sitka

There is only one way to go, and that is up! In more ways then one. Last weekend Tulku Yeshi Rinpoche returned to Sitka to teach his third Dharma workshop. We began our weekend hiking up majestic mountains. Rinpoche played the song Floating Blessings on his flute while overlooking all of Sitka. His hostess’ house was on a secluded island, which is a ten minute boat ride from  of Sitka. Each night, we were surrounded by the wildness of eagles, sea lions, whales, and wild flowers.

The following day, he taught Samantha and a beginners class of Vipassana. Sunday morning, he gave a talk concerning Buddha Nature and Mother Nature to help people understand the innate  Buddha consciousness in all living beings and to awaken one’s respect for all life on the planet through compassion and kindness. That evening, we held a Tibetan Cooking and Culture class. We made the soul food of Tibet called Thukpa . Rinpoche showed a documentary after dinner that he made of his life in Tibet. The documentary encompasses his family, education, history, religion, and the wild life of Tibet. While showing the documentary he took his time pausing and telling personal stories. This connected our hearts to Tibet and deepened our friendship, respect and compassion for his life’s journey.

We learned a lot in a small amount of time and look forward to his return.

Sitka Sangha

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June 22-24, 2018
by Alexandra Rose on behalf of Heruka Boulder Sangha

Once again, Heruka Boulder sangha was blessed and overjoyed to receive teachings and empowerments from our beloved Vajra Master and root teacher, H.E. Tulku Yeshi Rinpoche this past weekend. Throughout the course of the 5-day visit, Tulku Yeshi Rinpoche provided insight and instruction in the Vajrayana tradition, and effortlessly planted seeds of buddha dharma and fierce compassion within our hearts and the growing mandala of Heruka Boulder Sangha.

On the day of Rinpoche’s arrival, bright rainbows auspiciously appeared in the sky and strong winds blew across the mountains, as if the dakinis of the land and sky were warmly welcoming Rinpoche’s arrival and presence. Joyous sangha members greeted Rinpoche at the airport with flowers, smiles, and open hearts on Thursday afternoon, June 21, 2018. Later that evening, Heruka sangha gathered and held a Medicine Buddha practice and potluck with Dearest Rinpoche’s guidance and blessing. It was an intimate and beautiful celebration, and a favorable foreshadowing of the weekends teachings and sacred empowerments.

The following day, Rinpoche gave an introduction on the Longchen Nyingtik, the view of Longchenpa and Dzogchen lineage of the Heart Essence of the Vast Expanse. As vast as the sky and the activities of the lineage masters, Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, the teachings Rinpoche shared provided immeasurable depth, insight, and inspiration. Rinpoche tenderly spoke about his karmic heart connection with the Longchen Nyingtik terma cycle and Patrul Rinpoche, and referenced Patrul Rinpoche’s, Words of my Perfect Teacher, and shared precious teachings regarding the dzogchen preliminary practices, which was a very special gift to receive. Rinpoche then spoke of the fundamental importance of maintaining our precious samaya; with our Guru, our Dharma Brothers and Sisters, and the three Vajras of Body, Speech and Mind. Rinpoche taught us about the 3 Pillars and emphasized the importance of renunciation, bodhicitta, and pure-view, in order to maintain pure samaya and to cultivate virtuous action. Rinpoche explained renunciation in a sense of moral conduct by creating more ‘space’ between oneself and samsara, bodhichitta as immersed in the Four Immeasurables, and pure-view as relating to the essence of all things as they are free from concepts, holding emptiness as the sacred precept.

On Saturday, Rinpoche gave an elaborate and comprehensive teaching on the Yuthok Nyingthig, and bestowed a very special and elaborate empowerment for this sacred healing tradition. Rinpoche graciously gave transmission for ngondro and outer guru yoga preliminary practices, as well as the Medicine Buddha and Medicine Rishis and Dakinis of the Yuthok Nyingthig. Throughout the day, Rinpoche spoke of transforming the 5 afflictive poisons, or root kleshas (ignorance, attachment, jealousy, anger, pride) that keep us in cyclical suffering within samsara, by applying the antidotes (discipline/wisdom, selflessness/impermanence,  loving-kindness/joy, patience & generosity) that allow the fruition of transcendent awareness and enlightened compassionate activity. Following the empowerment, we enjoyed an abundant and vibrant tsok in celebration of Guru Rinpoche day. We then went on a hike together where Rinpoche discovered self-arising handprints and footprints embedded in the rocks and mountains. Rinpoche also found sacred writings, passages, and dakini nectar (water) on the top of a mountains edge. He expressed how auspicious these mountains are, and how they are blessed by Guru Rinpoche and the essence of Vajrayogini.

On Sunday, Rinpoche bestowed a Protector Empowerment of White Mahakala and granted us the transmission and sadhana for practice. We learned that Mahakala is the inner aspect and semi-wrathful emanation of Chenrezig, or Avolikteshvara, the Supreme Bodhisattva of Great Compassion. Rinpoche provided us with rich imagery and detail for visualization and contemplative practice, which supported our meditation tremendously and helped open our understanding and hearts to receive the blessings of the Dakinis and Protectors. We learned how Mahakala is a Dharmapala that supports and protects students of the Vajrayana path, and is responsible for creating good conditions by averting inner and outer obstacles that prevent or hinder the attainment of spiritual realizations. Rinpoche explained that Mahakala’s crown of five skulls represents the 5 Buddha families and the transmutation of the five poisons into virtuous and transcendent qualities. By visualizing Mahakala with six arms which signify the successful completion of the six perfections (Generosity, Discipline, Patience, Joyful Endeavor, Meditation/Concentration, Knowledge/Awareness), we young students of the Vajrayana path have the ability to relate deeply with the activity of the deity.

On Rinpoche’s last day in Boulder, Colorado, he was so kind as to have interviews with his devoted students and sangha. Dearest Rinpoche happily answered our questions, and it was a beautiful and special time shared together. Following this, Heruka Boulder sangha gathered and held another abundant and powerful tsok, in celebration of our precious teacher, each other and our happy dharma life and practice. This final night together was blissful and infinitely healing, and ignited boundless benefit and compassion for all beings in all worlds. Our time spent with Rinpoche went by so quickly, and was and always will be, profound and incredibly magical. May you continue to plant the seed of Dharma in the hearts of all beings, and come back over, and over again!

May the supreme jewel of bodhicitta
That has not arisen arise and grow
And may that which has arisen not diminish
But increase more and more!

Sarva Mangalam

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By Julie Ryder

On Friday June 15, 2018 Tulku Yeshi Rinpoche  arrived in Helena, Montana.  We slipped between the rain clouds all the way to the Goddess Dolmen and Animal Rocks which are positioned on a major earth energy grid line of the Montana Megaliths.  Rinpoche climbed up to the top of Titanic Rock to view alignments.  

Goddess Dolmen area was covered in wildflowers in full bloom.  Nearby Rinpoche requested we stop the car as he saw another megalithic structure in the forest.  After exploration of the stone structure he named it Dog Dolmen.  

The pouring rain continued.  The plan on Saturdaywas for the Rinpoche to teach at Giant’s Playground however the venue was changed to the JAML Library.  JAML is a library and meeting place where Dr. Richard O’Connor has sponsored meetings to educate people about UFO and related subjects.  Rinpoche presented teachings about the ancient  Tibetan traditions and told stories of his own experiences.

On Saturdayafternoon we retreated to Deb Thorpe’s home where Sarah Margaret soothed us with a Tibetan Bowl concert and Nicole Masters performed a Maori Fire Dance.  Julie Ryder presented her website photographs of the Montana Megaliths, experiences with two ancient crystal skulls, ancient glyphs in Montana and the connection of the world wide ancient language to cymatic frequencies.  Maps demonstrating that the Montana Megaliths are positioned on a major earth energy grid line generated conversation about harmonic frequencies and the healing energy of electromagnetic beams that are generated here.  

On Sunday thirty  people strolled  through Giant’s Playground as a light rain gifted the plants and trees.  A spotted baby deer fawn hidden beneath a tree slept quietly.   Everyone crowded into the Evergreen Dolmen where the Rinpoche sang ancient chants.   

We viewed the Robotic Watcher and the Tower Dolmen. Rinpoche taught at the Bennu Bird and again at the Pink Vault.

The rain stopped when we arrived at the stone  Silver Skull where we we filmed the Rinpoche on video teaching about the Tibetan Kings connections with the large hats that possible covered their elongated skulls.

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Written by Nga Pham Drime Jampa

Once again our Toronto Buddhist Terma Foundation (BTF) Sangha was blessed to have H.E. Tulku Yeshi Rinpoche returned for more teachings and empowerments this summer. Within five days, from June 7 to June 11 inclusive, Rinpoche provided us the Preliminary Great Perfection teachings and bestowed us with the Yamantaka and Mahakala empowerments as well as the Fire Puja of both of these deities.

In the evenings of June 7th and 8th, Rinpoche gave us the overview of the preliminary Longchen Nyingthig Dzogchen – Ngondro. He began his teaching with a brief introduction of nine vehicles in Buddhism that take our mind to different levels of realization, liberation and enlightenment. We learned that the first three are dealing with basic sutra levels and the later six are dealing with tantra levels. The Sutra Vehicle, or Sutrayana, contains two distinct approaches: the Theravada Traditional Vehicle and the Great Vehicle, or Mahayana. The Theravada tradition includes the Listeners and Solitary Buddhas vehicles which contains the most basic teachings of the Buddhist tradition: the Four Noble Truths, impermanence, and interdependence. The basic mindset of these two vehicles is the same, in that both approaches focus on individual liberation, rather than the liberation of all beings. The end point of the Theravada Vehicles is a lesser level of realization known as the state of the foe destroyer, or Arahat. The Great Vehicle, Mahayana, includes both the Bodhicitta and the Tantra vehicles which expands the view and scope of the foundational vehicle with concepts like bodhicitta and emptiness. In this approach, the outcome of spiritual practice is the attainment of Buddhahood. The core teachings like renunciation and compassion are equally important in all nine vehicles, though they may be expressed in more subtle ways. In the Foundational Vehicle, for instance, renunciation involves leaving behind worldly activities and taking up the life of a celibate monk or a nun, while in the Great Perfection, renunciation means to leave behind all dualistic perception and contrived spiritual effort. Therefore, monastic and lay practitioners alike can achieve Buddhahood through Mahayana or Vajrayana paths without leaving mundane activities.

Rinpoche then introduced the Dzogchen Longchen Nyingthig lineage of the Nyingma tradition. He began by explaining the word Longchen Nyingthig which we hear of very often but did not quite understand what they really mean before. We learned that Longchen means something that is as vast as space. Nyingthig means the heart essence. When we look upon the sky at night we can see so many stars and how vast space is. Space is the motherland that we can return to if we practice well enough. In the universe, there are many Buddha pure lands that we can be reborn into instead of this samsara. Yet, we continue to choose this “motel” instead of a “five-star hotel” due to our attachment, aversion and ignorance. Rinpoche’s analogy made us laugh so hard and realize how “silly” we have been in so many lives, life after life.

The next evening, Rinpoche went over the preliminary practices of Longchen Nyingthig Ngondro including the common outer preliminaries and the uncommon inner preliminaries. Rinpoche covered the six topics of the outer preliminaries which are: precious human existence, death and impermanence, the shortcomings of samsara, the principle of karma, the benefits of liberation and the principle of a guru. Through the first two topics, Rinpoche encouraged us to contemplate on the reasons why we should undermine the tendency to become obsessed with trivial matters and shortsighted goals such as wealth, fame and fortune, and instead, we should focus on what is more meaningful and long-lasting benefits of liberation. Rinpoche clearly unraveled the next two topics: the shortcoming of samsara and the law of karma. Through these topics that we can realize that no matter anywhere in samsara we are born (god, asura, human, animal, hungry ghost or hell realms) there is no end to suffering. Building upon this recognition, Rinpoche helped us to see the virtues of attaining freedom from confusion and suffering.

Overall, Rinpoche triggered the feeling disenchantment toward mundane activities that most general human beings are usually stuck in ordinary states of desire and attachment. At the same time, we are encouraged to develop a sense of enthusiasm and appreciation towards the state of liberation and enlightenment. While Rinpoche were taking us to the final contemplation of the outer preliminary, the role of the spiritual teacher on the path to liberation, an interesting question was raised “How can we find a realized teacher?” In Rinpoche’s response, he mentioned the most two important characters in a pure teacher that one should find are honesty and compassion. When responding to another question: “As Buddhists, should we eat meat or not?”, Rinpoche stays firm on the choice of being vegetarian instead of omnivore unless we achieve certain level of a Bodhisattva. Rinpoche explained if we eat meat, we would absorb the negative energies of the animals at death experience such as fear, anger and suffering into our bodies. Those energies are the cause to samsara, not nirvana. Finally, due to the time limit, Rinpoche went over the inner preliminaries which are going for refuge, cultivating bodhicitta, offering mandala, the purification practice of Vajrasattva, and Guru Yoga. Tulku Rinpoche stressed the importance of Ngondro practice especially the Guru Yoga practice since they are the doorways to enter further higher tantric teachings.

On June 9th and 10th, Rinpoche bestowed us the two precious empowerments which are Yamantaka and Mahakala deities. Prior to the actual empowerments, Rinpoche shared with us the history of the unbroken lineage of Yamantaka that continues to pass down from the two translators Ra Lotsawa and Mal Lotsawa. Yamataka is the wrathful manifestation of Manjushri, the Buddha of wisdom, that can cut through ignorance and conquer all evil spirits, including the Lord of Death, Yama. Mahakala is the protector for Yamantaka’s practitioners. Therefore, we feel very fortunate to receive the empowerments of both these two deities consecutively. During the empowerments, Rinpoche carefully went through the rituals of purification of the sangha place, the creation of the protecting rink, and introduced us to the associated mandala. Rinpoche followed with the purification and transformation of our body, speech, mind, qualities and conducts to the five Buddha families’ natures. Rinpoche’s genuine devotion and concentration in his prayers touched us profoundly. We could feel there were so much blessing came from the associated deities through Rinpoche. At the end of the Sunday as per practitioners’ request, Rinpoche reviewed the technique of dark meditation and guided us through it once again like last year. We were really touched by Rinpoche’s patience and compassion which consistently manifested in his effort to fulfill every single of our wishes.

The morning of June 11th was a pleasant one as well as a meaningful event when all attendants gathered for the Yamantaka and Mahakala’s Fire Puja. Everyone was instructed to write one thing that we wish to achieve and one obstacle that we wish to overcome. Many substances such as oils, beans, seeds, grass, nuts, and woods were used to represent the obstacles that we wish them to be destroyed by wisdom fire of Yamantaka and Mahakala. Some attendants observed the flame of the fire puja and stated that the flame often had the shape of Yamantaka with the two horns of a buffalo. The two split flames could represent the two relative and absolute truths or they could represent the two short-term and ultimate accomplishments that we wish to achieve in this occasion. In that afternoon, the Sangha consists of practitioners with various backgrounds brought their own traditional foods such as Chinese, Vietnamese, and European dishes to share with each other in the potluck lunch.

The five days spent with H.E. Tulku Yeshi Rinpoche went by so fast like a flash of light. However, Tulku Rinpoche’s compassion, knowledge, and guidance still linger on and stay with us as a model that we long to attain in a near future. We are looking forward to the next reunion with Tulku Rinpoche next year. During the meantime, we will try our best to practice and apply what we have learned in our daily life.

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Written by Yangchen

In this time when Volcano Goddess Pele is raging on our Island, profound suffering has arisen and amplified on the island of Hawaii. To address this, H.E. Tulku Yeshi Rinpoche chose to confer Ushnishavijaya-Namgyälma empowement, Chöd empowerment and 21 Tara empowerment for sustaining our ongoing cultivation during these times. In so doing Rinpoche brought tenacious cheerful mind and wise approach to all situations at hand here.

Rinpoche’s calm, watchful discernment in dealing with the individuals that attended through seeing his fliers and word of mouth conjoined with Rinpoche’s care in coordinating group interaction, generated the stability that gave rise to a cohesive and harmonious feeling sangha that aspires to cultivate these practices together and work toward mantra accumulations both individually and as a group.

Rinpoche brought both soothing and clarity to us each here in this island. While Rinpoche’s focus on this trip was the teachings of the female Bodhisattvas, he shared many keys to facilitate our understanding of Guru yoga overall and increase our accuracy and discernment as practitioners of the Buddhas’ sacred Dharma.

Inspired and focused in our active cultivation we are individually and collectively working toward accomplishing mantra accumulations before Rinpoche’s return for further in person teachings in early January of 2019.

We are grateful for Rinpoche’s turning of the wheel of the holy dharma and determined to
Make something beneficial for others of the time, attention, and energy Rinpoche has here devoted to us all.

Namo Gurube
Namo Buddhaya
Namo Dharmaya
Namo Sanghaya.

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