Lama Tsongkhapa writes lyrically about Lord Buddha’s teachings on dependent arising – the “king of logics” to prove emptiness, as Lama Yeshe puts it. With this perfect view, Je Rinpoche says, we can never “fall into the abyss of the great mistake” of nihilism, one of the commonest misconceptions about emptiness.
Over three days, we will investigate how in his gradual path literature Lama Tsongkhapa skillfully leads us to the eradication of ego-grasping, the primordial assumption of a fear-driven, bereft, separate self, which simply doesn’t exist.
In the first scope of practice, we start by applying the law of karma – an example of the first level of dependent arising: cause and effect — which gradually counteracts our pervasive feelings of hopelessness and self-pity, causing us to realize that we are the source of our own happiness and suffering.
In the middle scope, we get to the root of the problem by delving deep into our mind — that’s where the workshop is, as Lama Zopa Rinpoche says — and identifying our delusions, especially attachment, as well as aversion, jealousy and the rest, recognizing that these distorted emotions, the main voices of the fantasy I, keep us stuck in our limited sense of self.
Finally, combining our practice with bodhichitta, we are equipped to understand the subtler levels of dependent arising and to use this logic to uproot ego-grasping altogether and to achieve our natural potential for clarity, joy and boundless compassion.