About Shang Rinpoche
Rinpoche’s spiritual pursuit began at a very young age and has spanned many years, in which he received lineages of all four major Vajrayana Buddhist schools—Nyingma, Kagyu, Sakya, and Gelug—from numerous lineage holders and great yogis of our time in India, Tibet, Nepal and Bhutan. Rinpoche has acquired all the necessary empowerments, transmissions, and teachings to become a fully qualified Vajrayana master. Furthermore, Rinpoche is a recognized tulku (reincarnate lama), authenticated by eminent lineage holders and distinguished masters of our time.
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Self-reflection is the Source of Liberation
When disaster strikes, the immediate reaction of most people is to find something or someone to blame or even go so far as to demand an answer from the buddhas and bodhisattvas as to why they are so unfortunate. Why me and not others? In such circumstances, I bet anyone would experience these same negative emotions. Negative karma can be traced back to the most remote corners of our thoughts. It turns into a dark force that incites constant anxiety and emotional turmoil, bringing about all kinds of unintended consequences contrary to our wishes. Anyone familiar with the law of cause and effect knows that once our karmic fruits have ripened, there is no escape from the consequent adversities and hardships. You could very well be endowed with supernatural powers, or could run deep into the mountains and ancient forests, or hide in secret caves and corners, but to no avail; once your accrued negative karma unfolds, there is no safe house to be found however much you try to escape or resist.
Even the buddhas and bodhisattvas themselves are unable to circumvent the law of cause and effect. Our mind is the only force which might bring about positive transformation. We must never allow ourselves to harm any life with our body or behavior, for the sake of such things as having an abortion or directly taking lives to appease our appetite. When it is necessary to speak, we must take care to prevent any chance for coarse or vulgar language spoken by ourselves or others; do not propagate rumours, and never engage in untrue or meaningless speech. Try our best to avoid people or situations that will agitate us. Never use substances such as alcohol to numb ourselves to the anxious mess that is our mind. In our daily life, we must use positive thinking to transform our own mind, resume the virtuous endeavors of generosity, incurring positive karma and practice Dharma according to the Buddha’s words. Moreover, we should treat everyone around us, colleagues and family, with the same respect and love we have for our parents. Never find faults in external circumstances or others, but rather reflect on our state of mind. We must not advertise the misconduct of others; instead, we must expose our own flaws and errors in broad daylight. We should always be examining ourselves, like looking into a mirror without concealing ourselves.
Diligence is a virtue that is conducive to attaining liberation. On the other hand, an indolent mind is like a corpse exposed under the sun for all to see. A wise person is in a state of constant self-reflection for diligence is the key in practicing meditative absorption, just as the opportunity for liberation can only be found through endurance. Endless desires and interminable hatred are truly damaging to the mind, and over a prolonged period, will fill it with a murky gloom. Joy is derived from making others happy; upkeeping correct mindfulness at all times is the best self-protection. Humility ensures our life is never tainted by shame. Never slander or harm others in any way. If only we could control our mind like a driver at the steering wheel, then it would be nearly impossible to incur negative karma. There are countless methods in practicing and observing the mind, but they all fall under the categories of body, speech and mind. If anyone can take great care in looking after their body, speech and mind like their beloved only son, liberation is not unattainable after all.
From Shang Longrik Gyatso Rinpoche