A special present for everybody from the author, Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso
Read an excerpt from the chapter on 'Learning to Cherish Others'
'This book presents many profound methods of spiritual training, all of which are practical ways to purify and control our mind. If we put these methods into practice we will definitely gain a special experience of mental peace. By continuing to improve this experience, deluded states of mind will gradually diminish and our inner peace will grow. Eventually, by abandoning delusions altogether, we will attain the supreme permanent inner peace of nirvana. Having overcome our own delusions, such as anger, attachment and ignorance, and developed profound spiritual realizations of universal love, compassion, concentration and wisdom, our ability to help others will be far greater. In this way we can help others solve their problems not just for a few days or a few years, but for ever. We can help them discover an inner peace and joy that nothing, not even death, can destroy. How wonderful!'
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Free eBook available in ePub and Kindle formats
Out of his kindness and strong wish that as many people as possible have access to the special life-transforming methods and practices contained within How to Transform Your Life, Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso has requested that the book be distributed as a free eBook download, a special present for everybody. The eBook is available in both ePub and Kindle formats so it can be read on virtually any smartphone, tablet, laptop or PC.
‘We can sometimes help others by providing them with money or better material conditions, but we should remember that the greatest benefit we can give is to help them overcome their delusions and find true, lasting happiness within. Through technological progress and by organizing society in fairer, more humane ways, we can certainly help to improve people’s lives in some respects, but whatever we do will inevitably have some unwanted side effects. The best we can hope for is to provide people with conditions that bring some temporary respite from problems and difficulties, but we cannot give them true, lasting happiness. This is because the real cause of happiness is inner peace, which can be found only within the mind, not in external conditions.’
Advice for Life email seriesTo make the methods presented in How to Transform Your Life effective in bringing about lasting improvements to the quality of your life, it is not enough just to read or know about them intellectually. You need to take them to heart and learn how to apply them in your daily life. Tharpa offers a free ‘Advice for Life’ email series, which provides helpful suggestions on how to apply practices from this book in your everyday life. By signing up for this email service you will receive an extract from the book each week and a suggested practice for you to focus on during the week. To sign-up for the 'Advice for Life' email series, download the free eBook and on the download confirmation page enter your details in the sign-up area. If you have alread downloaded the eBook, you can sign-up for the 'Advice for Life' email series here.
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Regular classes to deepen your understandingVenerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso has founded centres and groups around the world where we can receive inspiration and teachings that bring the inner peace of meditation directly into our busy lives. Through these centres and their accessible meditation classes, study programmes, workshops and courses, everybody without exception can realize their own potential by developing the capacity of their minds. How to Transform Your Life is one of many life-changing books studied at these centres. Each centre holds popular drop-in meditation classes and courses that focus on the teachings and practices within How to Transform Your Life. If you want the opportunity to study or find out more about the practices presented in this book, visit your nearest Kadampa Meditation Centre or branch. There are hundreds of centres around the world, where you can meet people who are already benefiting from applying the methods presented in How to Transform Your Life.
An excerpt from How To Transform Your Life, from the Chapter, 'Learning to Cherish Others'
Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso
‘Our spiritual development and the pure happiness of full enlightenment also depend upon the kindness of living beings. Our opportunity to read, contemplate and meditate on spiritual teachings depends entirely upon the kindness of others. Moreover, as explained later, without living beings to give to, to test our patience or to develop compassion for, we could never develop the virtuous qualities needed to attain enlightenment.
In short, we need others for our physical, emotional and spiritual well-being. Without others we are nothing. Our sense that we are an island, an independent, self-sufficient individual, bears no relation to reality. It is closer to the truth to picture ourself as a cell in the vast body of life, distinct yet intimately bound up with all living beings. We cannot exist without others, and they in turn are affected by everything we do. The idea that it is possible to secure our own welfare while neglecting that of others, or even at the expense of others, is completely unrealistic.
Contemplating the innumerable ways in which others help us, we should make a firm decision: "I must cherish all living beings because they are so kind to me." Based on this determination, we develop a feeling of cherishing – a sense that all living beings are important and that their happiness and freedom are also important. We try to mix our mind single-pointedly with this feeling and maintain it for as long as we can without forgetting it. When we rise from meditation, we try to maintain this mind of love, so that whenever we meet or remember someone we naturally think, "This person is important, this person’s happiness and freedom are important." In this way, we will make progress in our practice of learning to cherish others.’
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