Mahayana Mind Training is not the same as study
because Mind Training means to transform your attitude, transform your whole
way of thinking and your outlook - entirely. Mere study, while beneficial, cannot
change how you act, think, and feel. The
Seven Points of Mind Training, by Chekawa Yesha Dorje provides practices to
help us transform our minds. The main practice is “sending and taking.” The reason we engage in this practice is to
cultivate loving kindness and compassion, which brings benefit to ourselves and
others and is indispensable for attaining Buddhahood. The text also provides
the foundations for engaging in this practice and guidelines and advice for
bringing the benefits of this practice into our post-meditation world.
Khenpo Karthar Rinpoche’s teaching explains each
of the seven points, drawing on commentary as necessary. Rinpoche first teaches
the preliminary practices (Point 1) of guru yoga and contemplating the four
reminders. Rinpoche’s teaching on absolute bodhicitta (Point 2) provides clear
and profound practice instructions on resting in the nature of mind as well as
on carrying the certainty from this formal practice into post meditation. With
respect to the main practice (Tonglen, or Sending and Taking), Rinpoche begins
with a contemplation to help us cultivate love and compassion, preparing us to
engage in the main practice. This is followed by a beautiful and detailed
teaching on the main practice of Sending and Taking (Point 2). Rinpoche then
helps us take the results of Tonglen into our daily world by presenting detailed
and easily-applied practice instructions. These instructions explain how we can
use relative and absolute bodhicitta to work with adverse circumstances that arise
in our samsaric world.
In the third and fourth talks, Rinpoche provides
profound and concise commentaries on the remaining points and slogans. The
Fourth Point offers condensed practices for life and death based on the essence
of the Buddha’s teachings. Points Five and Six include slogans on measuring our
mind training progress and slogans on understanding mind training commitments.
The concluding Seventh Point presents slogans of Advice for Mind Training. In the final session, Rinpoche took questions
from the participants, skillfully clarifying confusions. Translated by Lama
Yeshe Gyamtso. Four talks and one Q&A Session on five DVDs.