The Secret Message of Yeshua the Nazarene

Understanding the Mystery School Teaching of Rav Yeshua – the Palestinian Dharma Master – on this celebration of Rebirth and Resurrection.


Video: The Mystery School Teaching of Rev Yeshua (Rabbi Jesus)

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This teaching is especially dedicated to my Root Guru, Tenzin Yangchen (Ma Jaya Sati Bhagavati Santa Maharajni), to my brother monks, Gen Lozang Gyaltsen, H.E. tsem Tulku Rinpoche, Jampal Vajra Changko Braveheart, our novices, Adam Whiteman, Kalisvara Jaya, and my beloved Jampal Choden, as well as with fond thoughts and blessings to former members of the community, Michael and Amy Johnson, and members of our lay sangha, Pema Khandro, Janet McEnany, Sandy Cagle, and the monks, nuns and clergy who make up our extended spiritual sangha.

May this celebration of the spiritual resurrection of the Cosmic Christ within us all inspire new birth and a personal transformation for you and those you touch.

Consider All Phenomena as Dreams

brain-connectivity-130802One of the teachings in the Tibetan practice of Seven-Pointed Mind Training tells us to consider all phenomena as dreams. This enables us to better understand that our perceptions are not always accurate, and helps to break the habituation of being reactionary, based on false-perceptions.

It’s about learning to recognise that at any given moment, our idea of reality is being interpreted through the cloudy, muddled lens of our dualistic perceptions, our fears, and chaotic data, stored on the hard-drive of our subconscious minds.

Think for a moment about someone you dislike a great deal. In your mind, you’ve probably created an idea that this person will be permanently bad, or distasteful, or even evil. Am I right?

As a result, your every interaction with that person is coloured by that perception. But your perception is no different that if you perceived that interaction while you were sleeping.

You see, while we sleep, the dream seems quite real… but the moment we awaken from the dream, we realise that it wasn’t so. These appearances, which make up our everyday experience, are simply our mind’s manifestations of confusion.

Dreams sometimes appear to be totally realistic, and have the ability to cause our pulse to race, our bodies to sweat and shake… even though they are not anything more than our thoughts.

In the same way, as practitioners of Zenkondo, we can train our minds to recognise that those experiences that play out in our ‘waking dreams’ are simply the result of our thoughts… illusions deeply rooted in our subconscious minds.

Viewing each phenomenon as existing by itself, completely independent of its surroundings, causes, conditions, and our mental labeling of it, is the same as regarding dreams as real. By learning to see every experience as a dream – whether good or bad – we organically lose our attachment to them. We relax into the moment, and allow Pure Awareness to arise within us.

On Unconditional Love

Unconditional LoveUnconditional love is a path of service. It seeks nothing in return, and has no expectations or conditions placed on the recipient.

Author Stephen Kendrick once observed, “The only way love can last a lifetime is if it’s unconditional. The truth is this: love is not determined by the one being loved but rather by the one choosing to love.”

In this video, I share a few thoughts on why unconditional love is so important to your daily practice, and offer a challenge for those interested in cultivating a greater unconditional love for others, as part of their Zenkondo/Bodhisattva path.

“When you plant a seed of love it is you that blossoms.”
– Ma Jaya Sati Bhagavati

♥ मा मा मा ♥

The Year of the Horse Begins

07-gong-hei-fat-choiOn this first day of the New Year, the Year of the Horse, we exercise care to act with a pure and righteous intention, so that we can set the stage for our coming year.

This New Year (the year of the Wood Horse) not only ushers in a year of fast victories, unexpected adventure and travel, but also concides with the start of the month of the Fire Tiger, which makes the energies of this new year particularly lively and powerful.

The ancient practitioners of the Way would encourage us to “Hold the old and the new. Be the elder and the child.”

Today we are the “child”, embarking on a journey to the present moment, where we become “the elder” — the ancient holder of the wisdom that recognises our True Nature as Pure Awareness.

Wayseer Manifesto

zen-circle-five-peter-cutlerAs we begin a new year, I want to share with you a video that many of you have seen me share over the past two years. The Wayseer Manifesto resonates deeply with who I am, and with what we’ve taught for the past 32 years. It speaks to who I am and what sets us apart from the masses.

Neurological oppression often prevents us from embracing the Implicate Order, known as the Way. But what if this video were to unlock something within you?

Start the New Year Right

Free-New-Year-2014-Wallpaper-300x205As the year draws to a close, I will be taking the next three days for personal retreat, evaluation and dreamscaping for the year ahead. By doing this, I am stating my intention to start the New year right.

I encourage each of you to spend some time, if not for an entire four days, at least for a day, in self-reflection. Release that which no longer serves you, and welcome in the new.

Below are the twenty primary questions I work with each year, as I begin the process of self-reflection by journaling. Perhaps some of these questions will inspire you to do the same:

1. What is my proudest accomplishment for the past year?

2. What is the mistake I most regret having made?

3. What lessons have I learned?

4. What new habits would I like to cultivate this year?

5. How well did I spend my free time?

6. In what ways could I have been a better steward of my time, resources, and talents?

7. Have I been hurtful or unfair to anyone?

8. How can I make amends?

9. What old habits would I like to release in 2014?

10. What would I like to accomplish in terms of my finances in 2014?

11. In what ways have I improved my health this year?

12. What areas of health and wellness will be my focus for 2014?

13. In what ways have I allowed self-doubt or fears to hold me back?

14. Who do I need to forgive?

15. What can I do to treat myself better this year?

16. What are my financial goals for 2014?

17. What three new business habits will I adopt to move me closer to my financial goals?

18. What are my personal relationship goals?

19. How can I advance my spiritual practice this year?

20. Of what is it time to let go?

Take some time to review and celebrate the good that has occurred in 2013, to let go of the not-so-good, and to give yourself the time and space to envision exactly what 2014 will become for you and those around you.

My sole motivating desire, these past three decades, has been to alleviate suffering, eliminate fears and encourage people to rediscover their Essential Nature.

That is my fondest wish for you, as you prepare for a breakthrough year ahead.

P.S. We’re now just $109 away from ending the year with zero outstanding bills, and getting the software needed for the reopening of Western Buddhist University and the Ma Jaya Sati Bhagavati Centre for Interspiritual Dialogue. If you can help, please donate now.

Reflecting Back Over the Past Thirty-two Years

dc-gmAt times, it seems hard to believe that it’s been that long, but reflecting back over the past thirty-two years since I took my vows, on the night that Franciscan Companions of the Immaculata (which would later become the Contemplative Order of Compassion), has been a bittersweet journey.

I couldn’t imagine doing things any differently, and can honestly say that it has been a humbling privilege to have walked this path for a little more than three decades.

Our lives were entrusted to the Divine Mother, whose embodiment of the Immaculate Heart of Mary would remind us that a life of surrender to the Dharma, and serving those who suffer was the path to which we’d been dedicated body, mind and soul. It wouldn’t always be the easiest path, and it would require untold sacrifices, but it was the only path I could imagine for myself.

1972copyThis special day reminds me of so many people who served along side of us, but especially of the three co-founding brothers, and the fourth, who would join us shortly thereafter. They’ve all left their bodies now, as have the two bishops who presided with me over the community in those earlier days.

A few months after my profession of vows, I met my upa-guru, Lama Thubten Yeshe for the first time (in this life), and it would be some years later, that Lama Yeshe would point me in the direction of meeting my Root Guru, Ma Jaya (Tenzin Yangchen Ma).

Nine years of serving as the abbot six monastic houses, and 29 years of serving as the spiritual director of the Order itself, brought me into direct contact with so many dedicated men and women, for whose service to the sick, the poor and the dying I will always be grateful. Some left us to pursue more traditional paths. Others left because they didn’t find the demands of monastic/ordained life suitable. Still others, lacking the commitment to their practice, couldn’t handle the decimation of ego and the demands of accountability, and felt like they were being “picked-on”. All will remain my spiritual children for lifetimes.

At one time, students fought over who would do what, to personally and financially support the work we’re doing. Today, only one student donates all that she possibly can. The others all have convenient excuses for why they do nothing to support our work. And that has severely limited the reach of that work around the country. Yet through this medium, I can continue to try to inspire others to do what they can to alleviate suffering, and teach them to recognise the causes and conditions in their own minds, which create that experience of suffering, so that they might eliminate them in themselves.

For those precious few who still walk the path in these degenerate times, I thank you. And for the one, precious child, who continues to support our work, I offer my heart-felt gratitude and love.

 

Meditation

jordand_patch-meditationMeditation is essentially training our attention so that we can be more still, more aware, more in touch with our True Nature. Our True Nature is Pure Awareness. From this Pure Awareness springs forth the Bodhicitta Mind — Wisdom and Compassion — the basis for transforming the world, by transforming ourselves.

The more we deepen our practice of meditation, the more we manage to cultivate that serene stillness, the greater our sense of remarkable resourcefulness and the awareness of our intricately woven interdependence, which allows us to lead lives that are organically more free, more energetic, and more full than ever before.

Our path is a path of stillness. One learns to hold the Śakti, rather than allowing oneself to be controlled by it. While we recognise that this calls for greater spiritual maturity and commitment, we must always allow space for those whose paths call for more or less stringent or focused practice.

As Sharon Salzberg reminds us:

“Meditation may be done in silence & stillness, by using voice & sound, or by engaging the body in movement. All forms emphasize the training of attention.” (fromThe Power of Meditation: A 28-Day Programme for Real Happiness)

Not long ago, two of the students I felt showed the most promise for the guiding the future of our Order chose to leave the teaching. They claimed that I was too hard on them, and that my consistently calling them on their shit was “abusive”. From a Westerner’s perspective, they were probably right. And if we were founded as a Western Order, perhaps my approach would have been a little more New Age, Airy Faerie, Unicorns and Rainbows.

But that’s not who we are. And it’s not what this teaching is about.

I will always miss those two students, and know that if they would have dedicated even 15 minutes a day to their spiritual practice, sitting in quiet meditation, their journeys would have been dramatically different. Their experience of “harshness” and “abuse” might have been viewed as the concern and guidance that it was intended to provide.

normal_Cherry_Tree_Blossom_1If more of my students practiced meditation even fifteen minutes a day, I wouldn’t have to ask people to support the Dharma work and service to the poor that we undertake. They would open their hearts and their wallets regularly, because they would recognise this as THEIR work… THEIR community. THEIR Order.

Through meditation, our understanding the true nature of things — seeing things as they really are —  becomes the ground of wisdom. And from that fertile ground, our practice takes root and blossoms, like never before.