LAMRIM CHENMO (8)




16. EQUALISING AND EXCHANGING ONESELF AND OTHERS


The training based on texts by the Bodhisattva Santideva

The training based on texts by Santideva has three points:

contemplating the benefits of exchanging and the faults of not exchanging oneself and others,
demonstrating that you can generate this mind if you familiarise yourself with it,
and the stages of meditation on how to exchange oneself and others.


CONTEMPLATING THE BENEFITS OF EXCHANGING AND THE FAULTS OF NOT EXCHANGING ONESELF AND OTHERS


Entering the Bodhisattva Way (8.120) says:

Whoever wishes to protect
himself and others rapidly
should practice the secret instructions that
consist in exchanging oneself and others.

And (8.129-31)

All happiness that exists in the world
arises from wanting happiness for others.
All suffering that exists in the world
arises from wanting one’s own happiness.

What need is there to say any more?
The childish work for their own welfare,
the sages for the welfare of others.
Look at the difference between the two!

If one fails to correctly exchange
one’s own happiness with others’ suffering,
one will not reach buddhahood
or even be happy in cyclic existence.

Just as it is expressed here, think of cherishing yourself as the door to all degeneration and cherishing others as the basis of all excellence.



DEMONSTRATING THAT YOU CAN GENERATE THIS MIND IF YOU FAMILIARISE YOURSELF WITH IT


Fear used to arise in you even at hearing your enemy’s name, but later on, you reconciled and became friends and were very sad if he were absent. Likewise, from the mind following habits, you can learn to see yourself as like someone else and others as like yourself. The same text says (8.119):

Do not avoid things because they are difficult.
By the strength of familiarisation,
you become sad at the absence of someone
whose name was once frightful to hear.

And (8.112):

It is not all that hard to posit
my body as belonging to others. [131]

One might think, “Since someone else’s body is not my own body, how could it be appropriate to generate the same attitude of ‘mine’ toward it?” This body was also created from the semen and blood of our parents, and even though it was created from parts of others’ bodies, we hold it to be “I” by the power of previous familiarisation. Likewise, this mind will arise if we familiarise ourselves with cherishing others’ bodies as if they were our own. The same text says (8.111):

Thus you apprehend drops
of someone else’s blood and semen
as yourself; like that
get use to it regarding others!

A strong enthusiasm for this meditation will arise from the depths of the heart through thorough reflection on the benefits and faults along these lines. If you familiarise yourself with this, you will see that you can generate this attitude.



THE STAGES OF MEDITATION ON HOW TO EXCHANGE ONESELF AND OTHERS


This has two points: removing obstacles and the actual way to meditate.


REMOVING OBSTACLES

What is called “exchanging oneself and others” and “makes oneself into the other and making others into oneself” does not mean training in the mind that thinks, “The other person is me” and “His eyes and so forth are my eyes and so forth”. Rather, is to exchange the perspective of the mind that cherishes oneself and the mind that neglects others – to generate the mind that cherishes others like we cherish ourselves and neglects ourselves like we neglect others.

That is also why it was taught that one’s own happiness and the suffering of others should be exchanged. When we perceive self-cherishing as our enemy, we stop making our own happiness our priority. When we perceive cherishing others as an excellent quality and stop neglecting the suffering of others, we make it our priority to eliminate it. In short, we will act for the sake of eliminating the suffering of others without concern for our own happiness.

When training in this mind, there are two obstacles. We separate the two, oneself and others – the basis of one’s own and others’ happiness and suffering – into distinct natures, like blue and yellow, and hold them to be established in that way.

Then, with respect to the happiness and suffering based on them, we think, “Since it is mine, it should be accomplished or removed. [132] Since it is someone else’s, it is to be neglected”.

Therefore the antidote to this is to think that myself and others are not distinct entities by nature. Rather, as we look at one another, the mind “other” arises in me, whereas the mind “I” arises in the other person.

Thus it is like “the mountain over here” and “the mountain over there”. For instance, although from this perspective the mind “the mountain over there” arises with respect to the mountain over there, when you go to the mountain over there, the mind “the mountain over here” arises.

Therefore this is not the same as the fact that a mind of just blue will arise in whoever looks at the color blue and a mind of another color will not arise.

In this manner, the Compendium of Trainings also teaches that self and other are not inherently established but merely posited in dependence on the following point of view:

Through familiarity with the equality
of other and self, bodhicitta grows firm.
Self and other are relational and
just as false as that side and this side.

The slope is not that side by itself;
depending on the perspective, it’s this side.
The self in itself is not established;
depending on the perspective, it’s other.

You must remove the obstacle of thinking “Since the suffering of others does not harm me, I need not make an effort to remove it”. If this were the case, there would be no need to accumulate wealth when young, out of concern for the sufferings of old age, since the sufferings of the elderly person would not harm the youth. It was also said that the hand would likewise not eliminate the sufferings of the foot because they are other. This is a mere illustration and should also be applied to the sufferings of the morning and those of the evening and so forth.

Someone might think, “Self and other are not the same as these, since the elderly person and the  youth are the same continuum and the hand and the foot are the same collection”. A continuum and a collection are imputed to many instants and a combination of many parts; they lack an autonomous nature.

Since your own self and the self of others must be posited on a continuum or a collection, self and other are inherently established apart from mere relation. Yet your own suffering is unbearable owing to the power of familiarisation with self-cherishing from beginningless time. Therefore, if you familiarise yourself with cherishing others, their suffering will also become unbearable. [133]



THE ACTUAL WAY TO MEDITATE


By the power of attachment to the self, this self-cherishing has produced much that is undesirable from beginningless time up to now. Despite the fact that you have wanted to create excellence for yourself, you have relied on unsuitable means, contemplating your own welfare as paramount. Owing to this, neither your own welfare not that of others has been accomplished despite the passing of countless aeons. Not ony have you failed to accomplish that, you have only been tormented by suffering. If you had shifted the concern for your own welfare to that of others, you would have become a buddha a long time ago, and both your own and others’ welfare would have become excellent without a doubt. But since you did not do that, the time has been spent in meaningless exertion.

Think, “Now that I have understood this, I will rely on the mindfulness and vigilance that this self-cherishing is my worst enemy, and make much effort so that the self-cherishing that has not arisen does not arise and that which has arisen does not last long”. Having made this certainty firm, familiarize yourself with it many times. By thinking about the benefits of cherishing others again and again in this way, you will generate strong enthusiasm to do so from the depths of your heart. Then you will not generate new mental states that are neglectful of others, and any that have arisen will not last long. By giving rise, to whatever degree you can, to the thought that others are dear, pleasant, and likable, generate the mind cherishing others just as you previously cherished yourself.

Atisa sais, “The Tibetans celebrate ‘bodhisattvas’ who do not know how to train in love and compassion”. He was then asked, “Well then, how do you do that?” and he replied, “You must train sequentially from the beginning”.

Langri Thangpa said, “Shawopa and I have eightenn human methods and one horse method, nineteen altogether. The human methods are to generate the mind set on supreme enlightenment and train in doing whatever one does for the welfare of sentient beings. As for the horse method, since it is our self-cherishing that prevents any bodhicitta that has been born from surviving, we adopt a sideways stance [like a warrior] and then confront it and train in whatever we can to harm it. With sentient beings, we chersihg them and train in whatever we can to help them”.

Khamlungpa said, “Since we act deviously towards precious sentient beings, they will also do the same to us”.

It is good if habit develops that constantly checks to what extent this mind has been generated, because everything stems from it: whether the root of the Mahayana has been planted and whether one is included among Mahayanists. [134] If it does not arise, do not leave it at that but rely on a virtuous friend who teaches it. Always keep company with the companion that is mind training. Read the scriptures of the Teacher and their commentaries. As its cause, accumulate the collections and purify your obstructions. Since it is certain that if you train your mind in this way, the seed will be fully planted, these actions are of not little importance and a reason for joy. It is as Atisa said [in his Concise Method for Accomplishing the Mahayana Path (Mahayanapathasadhanavarnasamgraha)]:

For those who wish to enter the gate of
Mahayanya Dharma, it’s worth an eon of effort
for bodhicitta to grow, which like the sun and moon
eliminates darkness and pacifies scorching heat.



THE MEASURE OF IT HAVING ARISEN


That should be understood from what was already explained above.



THE RITUAL FOR ADOPTING BODHICITTA



THE WAY TO ADOPT IT BY MEANS OF A RITUAL


This has three points: receiving that which has not yet been received, guarding that which has been received without it degenerating, and the method for restoring it if it has degenerated.



RECEIVING THAT WHICH HAS NOT YET BEEN RECEIVED



This has three points: the object from whom it is taken, the person who takes it, and the ritual by which it is taken.



THE OBJECT FROM WHOM IT IS TAKEN


The assertions of the earlier masters accord with Master Jetarai, who said that it is not enough for the preceptor to possess the vow of aspiring bodhicitta and to be abiding it the trainings; he [she] must possess the vow of engaging bodhicitta.



THE PERSON WHO TAKES IT


All gods, nagas, and so forth who are physically and mentally suitable to generate aspiring bodhicitta are also a suitable basis for it. Commentary on Difficult Points of Lamp for the Path says:

Repulsed by cyclic existence, mindful of death,
with wisdom and great compassion.

Thus the vow taker should be someone who has gained a little experience of transforming his [her] mentality into bodhicitta by training the mind in the stages of the path as explained above.



THE RITUAL BY WHICH IT IS TAKEN


This has three points: the preparatory ritual, the actual ritual, and the concluding ritual.



THE PREPARATORY RITUAL


This has three points: special going for refuge, accumulating the accumulations, and training in the attitude.



SPECIAL GOING FOR REFUGE


This is divided into three points: decorating the place, displaying representations, and setting up offering substances; making a request and going for refuge; and stating the trainings of having gone for refuge.



DECORATING THE PLACE, DISPLAYING REPRESENTATIONS, AND SETTING UP OFFERING SUBSTANCES


Clean an isolated place, smear it with the five cow substances, anoint it with exquisite perfumed water such as sandalwood water, [135] and scatter fragrant flowers. Set out representations of the Three Jewels – metal statues and so forth, texts and so forth, and images of bodhisattvas – on a throne, a table, or a raised platform. Do the preparatory ritual with items such as canopies and flowers, that are as valuable as possible, as well as music, food, and so forth. Arrange a throne for the teacher and adorn it with flowers. The accumulation of merit is done by paying respect to past masters and the Sangha and by giving a torma offering cake to the elemental spirits.

If you do not have any offerings at all, as described in the Good Eon Sutra (Bhadrakalpikasutra), it can be done even by offering scraps of cloth. If you do have offerings, they should have been obtained through great effort, without deceit, and should be arrayed in such a way that your friends cannot help marveling. When Atisa was asked to confer the mind generation by Tibetan teachers in Mangyul and Samya, he reportedly said that a consecrated statue of the main master of the teachings was imperative as a representation, and at least the Verse Summary of the Perfection of Wisdom should be used as a text.

Then the assembly of aryas is invoked. The student, washed and well dressed, with his hands joined, is encouraged by the guru to generate clear faith in the excellent qualities of the merit field from the depths of his heart. He should then slowly do the seven-limb practice and imagine that he is in front of the buddhas and bodhisattvas.



MAKING A REQUEST AND GOING FOR REFUGE


Then the student generates the perception of his guru as the Teacher, prostrates to him and makes offerings to him, including a mandala. With his right knee on the floor and palms joined, he makes a request for generating bodhicitta:

Just as the tathagatas, arhats, and perfectly complete
buddhas, as well as the great bodhisattvas
abiding on the great grounds, first generated the
mind of unsurpassed, perfectly complete
enlightenment, likewise I, whose name is ______,
request the master to generate the mind of unsurpassed,
perfectly complete enlightenment.

Repeat this three times.
Then the student goes for refuge, with the behaviour explained above, to the objects – the Buddha, the Dharma (the true paths that mainly bring about the cessations), and the Sangha [136] (the irreversible arya bodhisattvas). The student thinks, “From now until I achieve enlightenment, in order to protect all sentient beings, I go for refuge to the Buddha, the teacher of refuge; I go for refuge to the Sangha, whom I as to be my companions in practicing refuge”. Then, with the general and special attitude, the student makes the strong aspiration: “I will never turn away from this attitude at any time”.

Master, please grant me your attention. I, whose name
is ________, from now until I reach the quintessence
of enlightenment, go for refuge to the best of humans,
the blessed buddhas.
Master, please grant me your attention. I, whose name
is _____________, from now until I reach the quintessence
of enlightenment, go for refuge to the best
of Dharmas, the Dharma that is peace, free from
attachment.
Master, please grant me your attention. I, whose name
is _____________, from now until I reach the quintessence
of enlightenment, go for refuge to the best of assemblies,
the Sangha of irreversible arya bodhisattvas.


Repeat this three times. The request for attention when going for refuge to each of the Jewels and the unusual words of going for refuge to the Dharma accord with the ritual composed by Atisha.



STATING THE TRAININGS OF HAVING GONE FOR REFUGE


Here too the master should mention the trainings that were explained above in the context of persons of lesser capacity.


ACCUMULATING THE ACCUMULATIONS


As before, the seven-limb practice should be done in the presence of the direct and lineage gurus and the merit fields explained above.



TRAINING IN THE ATTITUDE


The observed and aspects of love and compassion should be visualized as explained above.



THE ACTUAL RITUAL


In front of the master, the student should kneel down on his [her] right knee, sitting in a crouching position is also appropriate. With palms joined, he [she] should generate bodhicitta. Mind generation here is not the mere mind generation that think, “I will attain Buddhahood for the welfare of others.” Rather, one focuses on that mind that has been generated and makes the promise, “I will not give it up as long as I have not attained enlightenment”. Thus generate that attitude in reliance upon ritual.

If you are unable to train in the precepts of aspiring bodhicitta, you should not make this promise. However, everyone may ritually generate the mere thought “I will become a buddha for the welfare of all sentient beings,” [137] regardless of whether they are able to train in the trainings of mind generation. These two approaches may be appropriate for aspiring bodhicitta, but it is inappropriate to ritually take on engaged bodhicitta without training in the precepts. Therefore it is incorrect to claim that there are differences among the many vow rituals passed down by Nagarjuna and Asanga in terms of whether or not it is appropriate. The Advice of the King Sutra says that if one cannot train in the precepts of generosity and so forth, a great amount of merit is accomplished in mere mind generation. Taking this as its source, the first Stages of Meditation says:

Those who cannot train in the perfections fully
in all their aspects should still generate bodhicitta
thoroughly conjoined with method because the
results will be great.

Thus it is clear that it is appropriate for someone incapable of training in the precepts of generosity and so forth to adopt the mind generation but inappropriate to take the vow.

The ritual for adopting bodhicitta is as follows:

All buddhas and bodhisattvas residing in the ten
directions, please grant me your attention, Master,
please grant me your attention. I, whose name is
________, by means of the roots of virtue of the
nature of generosity, the nature of ethics, and the
nature of meditation that I have created, caused
to be created, and rejoiced in the creation of in
this life and in previous lives, just as the previous
tathagatas, arhats, perfectly complete buddhas
and great bodhisattvas thoroughly abiding on the
great grounds generated the mind of unsurpassed
perfectly complete enlightenment, in the same
way also I, whose name is ______, from now
until I reach the quintessence of enlightenment,
will generate the mind of unsurpassed, perfectly
complete, great enlightenment, I will liberate the
beings who are not liberated, free those who are
not free, give relief to those without relief, and
cause those who have not completely passed beyond
sorrow to completely pass beyond sorrow.
[138]

Say this three times. Even though it is not clearly mentioned, it is necessary to repeat these words after the master in the refuge ceremony and in this ritual.

This is the manner of adopting bodhicitta in the presence of a master. Atisha’s Mind Generation Ritual says what to do if we cannot find a master.

The ritual for generating bodhicitta oneself in the
absence of a master is as follows. Having brought
to mind the Tathagata Sakyamuni and all the
tathagatas of the ten directions, prostrate to them
and do the rite of offerings and so forth. Then, as
with the previous order, make the request and go
for refuge, but leave out the word “Master” and so
forth.


THE CONCLUDING RITUAL


The master should proclaim the precepts of the aspiring mind to the student.







17. GUARDING ONE’S BODHICITTA



GUARDING THAT WHICH HAS BEEN RECEIVED
WITHOUT IT DEGENERATING


This has two points: training in the cause of bodhicitta not degenerating in this life and training in the cause of not being separated from bodhicitta again in future lives.



TRAINING IN THE CAUSE OF BODHICITTA
NOT DEGNERATING IN THIS LIFE


This has four points: training in remembering the benefits so that the strength of one’s delight in bodhicitta increases, training in generating it six times so that actual bodhicitta increases, training in not mentally abandoning any sentient being for whose welfare bodhicitta has been generated, and training in accumulating the collections of merit and wisdom.



TRAINING IN REMEMBERING THE BENEFITS SO THAT THE
STRENGTH OF ONE’S DELIGHT IN BODHICITTA INCREASES


Contemplate the benefits of bodhicitta by studying the sutras or hearing them from your guru. Since they have been taught extensively in the Marvelous Array Sutra, they should be studied here. As quotes above, it says, “Bodhicitta is like the seed of all the Dharma of the Buddha,” and all the conduct an aspirations of the bodhisattvas are summarized in it. Therefore it is said to be like a brief presentation, since although the extensive explanation of the elements is boundless, the brief presentation contains everything and distills the essential points of all bodhisattva paths.

Because the benefits taught in Asanga’s Bodhisattva Levels concern aspirin bodhicitta, the two benefits of generating stable bodhicitta are mentioned first. You become a holy field and thoroughly endowed with the merit of non-harm.


YOU BECOME A HOLY FIELD


As stated, “The world with its gods and human beings will bow to you”. [139] As soon as you generate this mind, you become an object of veneration for all sentient beings. As stated in the scriptures, you outshine all the great arhats by way of your lineage as soon as you generate this mind; you become a superior or an exhalted being. You become a field of merit by yielding limitless effects even through minor meritorious acts. You become like a father of all beings in accordance with the statement “Supporting the whole world, you are like the earth”.



YOU BECOME THOROUGHLY ENDOWED
WITH THE MERIT OF NONHARM


Since you are guarded by twice as many protectors as protect a universal monarch, yaksas and nonhuman primordial local guardians cannot harm you even when you are asleep, intoxicated or careless.

You pacify calamities, harm, and infectious diseases with the words of secret mantra and knowledge mantra. If even things that cannot be accomplished in the hands of sentient beings will be accomplished when they come into your hands, what need is there to mention that other things will be accomplished? Owing to this, the activities of pacification and so forth are shown to be easily accomplished in reliance upon bodhicitta. Therefore, if you have that, you will also quickly accomplish the common siddhis.

Fear, famine, and harm from nonhuman beings will not occur in those places in which they have not occurred, and you will experience little harm, be without illness, and so forth after transmigrating.

Because you are endowed with patience and a gentle disposition, you will bear harm that is done to you and will not return harm and the like. Also it will be difficult for you to be reborn in the lower rebirths, and, if it happens, you will quickly be freed. While there, you will have little suffering and as a result become extremely disenchanted with cyclic existence. Compassion for those sentient beings will also arise.

If the merit of bodhicitta were to become form, it could not be contained in space itself. Making offerings of material things to the buddhas does not compare to it even partially. The Questions of the Householder Viradatta Sutra (Viradattagrhapatipariprcchasutra) says:

If the merit of bodhicitta
were to take physical form,
it would fill the entire realm
of space and even then surpass it.

Someone might offer buddhafields [140]
filled with jewels as numerous as
the sand grains of the river Ganges
to the protector of the world,

but to join the palms and bow
to bodhicitta is distinctly
superior to that offering made.
As for this, it has no limit.

Once Atisha was circumambulating the Vajra Seat [in Bodhgaya] and contemplating how to attain complete enlightenment quickly. Then the smaller statues stood up and asked the bigger ones, “What should those who want to quickly become a buddha train in?” The latter replied, “They should train in bodhicitta”. In the sky above the main temple, a young woman questioned an older woman, and the latter made a similar reply. It is said that his mind became very certain about bodhicitta from hearing this.

In that way, you should understand bodhicitta as the condensed essential point of all the Mahayana instructions, the great treasure among all siddhis, the distinctive feature that differentiates the Mahayana from the Hinayana, and the supreme basis that exhorts one to the vast conduct of the victors’ children. Increase the strength of your delight in meditating on it, like someone thirsty hearing of water. This is because the buddhas and their children analysed the paths for many eons and with increasing subtlety with their marvellous exalted knowledge saw it to be the supreme method for attaining Buddhahood. Thus Entering the Bodhisattva Way (1.7) says:

Having reflected thoroughly for many eons,
the lords of sages saw this as of foremost benefit.


TRAINING IN GENERATING IT SIX TIMES SO
THAT ACTUAL BODHICITTA INCREASES


This has two points: training in not giving up aspiring bodhicitta and training in increasing it.


TRAINING IN NOT GIVING UP ASPIRING BODHICITTA


The Verse Summary of the Perfection of Wisdom teaches that it is a sin worse than a defeat of pratimoksa to vow to liberate sentient beings who have not been liberated and so forth in the presence of the buddhas, bodhisattvas, and your spiritual teacher as witnesses but then lay down the burden of bodhicitta because of discouragement from seeing the enormous number of sentient beings and their bad actions; the long time, many eons, you need to exert yourself; or the necessity of training in the two limitless accumulations and difficult practices. [141] Entering the Bodhisattva Way says that if you give up the mind you have undertaken, you will have to wander in the lower rebirths for a long time. That same text also says (3.27):

Just as a blind man finds a jewel
in a heap of dust
by chance, bodhicitta
has arisen within me.

Like this, think, “What I have found is absolutely amazing” and “I will not give it up under any circumstances”. Observing this, reinforce your heart’s decision not to give it up even for an instant.



TRAINING IN INCREASING ASPIRING BODHICITTA

Since it is not enough to merely not give it up, you should reinforce it three times a day and three times at night with great effort. If you can accomplish the extensive ritual explained above, you should do it according to that. If you cannot accomplish it, train in love and compassion, having visualized the merit fields and made offerings. You should do this six times a day. The ritual for this is say the following three times in the day and three times at night:

I go for refuge until I am enlightened
to the Buddha, the Dharma, the Highest Assembly.
Through practicing generosity and the rest,
may I attain Buddhahood for the benefit of beings.


TRAINING IN NOT MENTALLY ABANDONING
ANY SENTIENT BEING FOR WHOSE WELFARE
BODHICITTA HAS BEEN GENERATED


The measure of mentally abandoning a sentient being is the occurrence of the thought “I will not work for his welfare now or ever after” depending on some condition – for example, that he has done something unacceptable.



TRAINING IN ACCUMULATING THE
COLLECTIONS OF MERIT AND WISDOM


Having adopted aspiring bodhicitta through a ritual, you should put effort into the accumulations through daily offering to the Jewels and so forth as the cause for increasing bodhicitta.


TRAINING IN THE CAUSE OF NOT BEING SEPARATED
FROM BODHICITTA AGAIN IN FUTURE LIVES


This has two points: training in abandoning the four
non-virtuous practices that cause it to degenerate, and training
in adopting the four virtuous practices that do not allow it
to degenerate.



TRAINING IN ABANDONING THE FOUR NONVIRTUOUS
PRACTICES THAT CAUSE IT TO DEGENERATE


Among the four nonvirtuous practices, the first is deceiving one’s abbot, master, guru, or those worthy of offering. The objects are one’s abbot and master, which is easy to understand, your guru, who is someone who wishes to benefit you, and those worthy of offerings are those endowed with excellent qualities, even though they do not belong to the two preceding categories.

Someone might wonder, what action become a nonvirtuous practice when it is done to [one’s abbot and so on]? It is a nonvirtuous practice to knowingly cheat him, whatever the means. [142] However, as the deceit and shiftiness that are not lies are indicated below, here it must refer specifically to cheating through lying. This is because the Compendium of Trainings teaches that abandoning a nonvirtuous practice constitutes a virtuous practice and because the antidote of this nonvirtuous practice is the first of the four virtuous practices [listed below].

The second is to cause others to regret virtues that they do not regret. Here, the object is another person who does not regret a virtue that he [she] has done. The action toward that person is to express regret for that which is not an object of regret with the intention of making him [her] regret it. Whether or not the person is deceived and whether or not the person has regrets, is the same.

The third is to say something uncomplimentary and the like about a sentient being who has entered the Mahayana. The object here is someone who has generated bodhicitta and possesses it. The action toward them is to say something unpleasant motivated by hatred. In this case, the object to whom it was said must understand the meaning. It is easy for this to occur, and it is also a very great fault. This was already mentioned above in brief. Furthermore, the Magic of Complete Certainty of Total Peace Sutra teaches that if a bodhisattva generates a mind of contempt toward a bodhisattva, he [she] must remain in hell for an eon and that there is nothing apart from deprecating another bodhisattva that can make a bodhisattva fall into the lower rebirths. The Verse Summary of the Perfection of Wisdom also says that if a bodhisattva who has not yet obtained a prophecy argues out of anger with a bodhisattva who has obtained a prophecy, he [she] will have to spend as many eons longer on the path as there were moments of a mind of anger. Because of that, the same text also teaches that you must put an end to anger in all its aspects and put effort into confessing it and restraining it immediately whenever it arises.

The fourth is an action done out of deceit and shiftiness but without the extraordinary attitude. Here, the object is any other sentient being. The action done toward them is to act with deceit and shiftiness. Deceit and shiftiness are explained here in terms of deceiving with respect to measures and weights and so forth and like Gyalwa Yechung’s actions, for example. In order to send someone off to Rakma, Gyalwa Yechung sent him first just to Tolung so that he [she] would then be willing to go all the way to Rakma. According to the Compendium of Trainings, deceit is to feign qualities one does not possess, [143] and shiftiness is to take measures to hide one’s faults.


TRAINING IN ADOPTING THE FOUR VIRTUOUS
PRACTICES THAT DO NOT ALLOW IT TO DEGENERATE


The object of the first virtuous practice is all sentient beings. The action is to eliminate knowingly lying to them even for the sake of one’s life or for as little as a joke. If you act in this way, you will be sure not to cheat special objects such as you abbot, master, and so forth through lies.

The object of the second virtuous practice is all sentient beings. The action is to abide with the extraordinary attitude toward them without deceit or shiftiness – that is, to abide with an honest attitude. It is the antidote to the fourth nonvirtuous practice.

The object of the third virtuous practice is all bodhisattvas. The action is to generate the perception of them as resembling the Teacher and to proclaim truthful praise about them in the four directions. Sharawa said that although we have created a little bit of something like virtue, there is no sign of its increase and many signs of its exhaustion. Virtue is exhausted through hatred, disdain, and offense toward bodhisattvas and our companions. Therefore, if we are able to eliminate offending our companions and bodhisattvas, we will no longer experience what is referred to in the Compendium of Trainings as “harm based on persons”. Since we do not know in whom bodhicitta is present, we act from the perspective of training in pure appearances, generating the perception of all sentient beings as the Teacher in accordance with the Kasyapa Chapter (Kasyapaparivarta). If there is an audience and an opportunity to express their excellent qualities, do so. However, if you do not go to all four directions and proclaim them, this is not a fault. This virtuous practice is the antidote to the third nonvirtuous practice.

The objects of the fourth virtuous practice are the sentient beings who are ripened by you. The action is to cause them to hold to complete enlightenment without wishing for a temporary vehicle. Moreover, while from your side you should cause your disciple to make a connection with it, if that thought does not arise in the disciple, it does not become a fault because you were unable to accomplish it.

By means of this virtuous practice, you abandon the second nonvirtuous practice, for if you wish from the depths of your heart to establish others in the ultimate of all types of happiness, you would not do something to cause them to give rise to mental unhappiness so that they give rise to regret that is, itself, mental unhappiness. [144]

The Questions of a Lion Sutra says:

“By what means is bodhicitta
not given up in all one’s lives,
not even in one’s dreams,
Much less while one is not asleep?”

He spoke: “In cities or in villages
in the countries where you live,
guide others correctly to enlightenment.
Through that, bodhicitta will not be abandoned”.

Furthermore, Array of Qualities in Manjushri’s Buddhafield teaches that the aspiration is not abandoned if one possesses four qualities: having abandoned pride, having abandoned jealousy, having abandoned miserliness, and being mentally joyful when seeing others’ wealth. The Cloud of Jewels of Sutra clearly teaches that if you train in bodhicitta before starting any virtuous activity, you will not be separated from this precious mind in other lives either. As it is said, “If a person investigates time and time again…”


THE METHOD FOR RESTORING IT IF IT HAD DEGENERATED


If you transgress the precepts other than giving up the aspiring mind and mentally giving up sentient beings, there is no infraction from the point of view of a bodhisattva as long as you do not have bodhisattva vows. However, since it transgresses the precepts of promising virtue in the interim, it becomes faulty conduct and therefore should be confessed by means of the four powers.



HOW TO TRAIN IN THE CONDUCT AFTER GENERATING THE MIND


This has three points; the reason it is necessary to train in the precepts after generating bodhicitta, demonstrating that Buddhahood is not achieved by training in method or wisdom alone, and explaining the actual stage of training in the precepts.



THE REASON IT IS NECESSARY TO TRAIN IN THE PRECEPTS AFTER GENERATING BODHICITTA


According to the above scriptural passage from Life of Maitreya, even if you do not train in the precepts of generosity and so forth after generating aspiring bodhicitta in this manner, it will still be of great benefit. However, if you do not make the bodhisattva precepts your essential practice, it will be impossible to become a buddha. Therefore you should train in the conduct. The King of Concentrations Sutra says:

One should make it the essential practice. Why?
Because, oh youthful one, it will not be difficult
for one who makes it his [her] essential practice to
obtain unsurpassed perfectly complete
enlightenment. [145]

Also, Kamalasila says in the first Stages of Meditation:

A bodhisattva who has generated the mind understands
that he [she] cannot tame others without taming
himself [herself] and thoroughly applies himself [herself] to the
practice of generosity and so forth. Without the
practice he [she] cannot achieve enlightenment.


Once the vow has been taken, you must practice training in those very precepts associated with it.  








(to be continued…)