Dear friends near and far
As always, I hope this message finds you well, healthy and happy. On this Guru Rinpoche day, I would like to share with you some advice about two more qualities that are important both for worldly life and Dharma practice.
The first of these qualities is being able to see one’s own faults without losing one’s dignity (rang kyön tong tupa, sem pa ma shorpa). Many people are able to see their faults, and that’s good, but then they get into self-blame, self-deprecation, and low self-esteem. When you see your own faults, you should neither scold yourself nor become discouraged. Don’t get into a vicious cycle thinking, “Oh I’m so terrible, I’ll never succeed, I can’t possibly improve, I’m just so bad…” This type of thinking just leads us down toward losing all self-respect. So when we see our faults, we should neither blame others nor ourselves, but buck up, keep our dignity, and think constructively. This applies to both the worldly context and to Dharma practice.
The second important quality is having patience without regrets (zöpa yö la gyöpa mepa). True patience is not something to be regretted. So if we can endure someone’s negative behavior, and act with patience towards them, we should rejoice in that, and not have any regrets. We hear a lot about the importance of being patient, but it’s just as important not to regret one’s patient attitude afterwards. Patience without regret is the correct attitude, and it will even help you to be more frank and open to others. This type of patience is important both for daily life and Dharma practice.
Both of these qualities will not only benefit you, but also those around you; so we need to train in them. How do we do that? The key is understanding the concept behind the qualities. Understand that you need to see your own faults, but without losing self-esteem, without being hard on yourself, and without losing your positivity. Also understand that patience is a virtue, and that it should not lead to regrets: true patience is without any regrets.
Please reflect on these qualities and try to understand their logic, their principle, so that you can apply them in your daily life and Dharma practice.
I am keeping you all in my prayers.