Sep 24, 2015

Posted by in BUDDHISM IN OTHER LANGUAGES | 12 Comments

Lesson 3: Abandoning the subjective opinions (Từ bỏ sở kiến chủ quan)

Lesson 3: Abandoning the subjective opinions (Từ bỏ sở kiến chủ quan)

Right Buddhist teachings, wrong method of Dharma practice

Lesson 3: Abandoning the subjective opinions

Paying homage to my Guru,

After having the affinity to read your commentaries on “right Buddhist teachings, wrong method of Dharma practice” I rejoice in your discourse so that I have more right knowledge in practical applications according to the realities that remain in orbit of right Dharma. I would like to bow respectfully to you.

Lotus Flower Estrade in Song Nguyen Tantra House

From this affinity, I would like to rely on the wisdom of compassionate Guru, Yidam, Dakini to write something about “Understanding” and “Practicing” in Buddhism.  If there is something wrong due to my superficial thinking, I hope the Guru with the compassion to enlighten me.  I am penitent about my mistakes.

Talking about the “wrong approach”, there are traditionally many tragicomic stories of the confusion in the medical field, so there is a saying: Tonics of this disease is the poison of other disease! Likewise, in Buddhism there cannot be a remedy (method) being suitable for all beings with different backgrounds. Dorje Chang Buddha III Wan Ko Yeshe Norbu presented the Dharma talks on “128 the bad points of evil and misguided view”, in which the 14th erroneous perception is as follows:

“There is the notion that there exists an ultimate solution which can be suitable with all living beings. The disciples often said: “Our dharma is the most senior. Dorje Chang III’ dharma is ultimate. It is unparalleled. It can save all sentient beings. Noone is not saved by this dharma.” Today I say to you all that this view is wrong. There are a number of sentient beings who cannot be saved, some of them who are the bad guys. They even make defamatory on Buddhism. Their three karmas would not fit with the dharma. Some of them really are demons who want to be against the Dharma.

Moreover, in Buddha – Dharma, there is not the ultimate one being fit for all beings yet. Never has such a dharma. Among all Buddhas, there are not any Buddhas who have never had such an ultimate dharma. All sentient beings are the entities with different karmas. A person will experience the benefit from the practice of Dharma only when it suits him. A person will not be able to experience the benefits from the practice of Dharma if it does not fit him.

Although the dharma is extremely great, but a master having that dharma will not teach people who do not have sufficient devotion. Even if the teachers teach them such dharma, they are not able to practice dharma successfully without Guru Devotion. So, even though dharma is good, it cannot save all sentient beings”

There are two major reviews: 1) There is no consistent approach to all beings; and 2) although there is the senior dharma, practitioner without Guru Devotion is still not suitable for initiation since it would not make sense.  Accordingly, it was found that only using a “Dharma remedy” to cure all ailments of the beings karma is not unrealistic, but it is necessary to combine a lot of harmony conditions for good results. There is only the case that dharma is introduced to certain sentient beings for planting the good seeds because of Bodhicitta, without falling into the eight winds (Attha-vayubheda).

Dorje Chang Buddha III Wan Ko Yeshe Norbu

In ancient time, among the Buddhist disciples, there were two Arhats including Maudgalyayana and Sariputra could be the most successful in helping all sentient beings. One day, there were two ordinary people coming for dharma. They were a blacksmith and a fisher. The high-rank monk, Maudgalyayana taught the blacksmith to sit in meditation. Sariputra taught the other to chant the name of Buddha repeatedly. As a result, two practitioners got no achievement (fortunately, there occurred no problems as the warning from His holiness the 12th Gyalwang Drukpa).

Sariputra – The Buddhist disciple

The Lord Buddha knew about this situation and he said that the method was good though the application which was not suitable to the situation would have no results. Why? Blacksmith always blew furnaces why you did not taught him to chant Buddha’s name because the action of repeating the name of Buddha was the same as blowing. The fisher often observed in the quiet situation, why you did not teach him to sit in meditation. Listening to Buddha’s teaching, two respected Saints changed the method to teach the two practitioners. For only a short time, both of them reached the enlightenment.

Maudgalyayana – The Buddhist disiple

Speaking about two other saints of Subhuti and Mahakasyapa who also had “the wrong approach” due to applying the extremists of teaching method for “getting blessing”, and here are the two stories:

With the deep compassion towards the poor, when Saint Subhuti lived with his parents during the childhood, he often made the charity. Repeatedly scolded by his parents, he did not abandon the generosity. So when he went out for alms with Lord Buddha every day, he could not stopped for alms at the door of the poor houses, he always came to the wealthy families for alms even such rich families were very far from his place. Other Buddhists felt that his getting alms was too strange and they wanted to know the reason. According to the alms regulation, all disciples went out for alms house to house regardless of the poor or the rich in order that Buddhist’s disciples could give them a chance to make good deeds for blessings.

However, leaving the monastic every morning, he went alone for alms and did not come the poor families, he sometimes came back home with the empty alms bowl. When a fellow asked the reason, he explained: “Receiving almsgiving from the poor or the rich is for the benefit of all sentient beings, but receiving alms from the poor means that I am deprived of their diet. Moreover, if the poor do not have enough food to give alms, they will be sad, so I unwittingly sow the sorrow seed in their mind.

On contrary to Saint Subhuti, Venerable Mahakasyapa only received alms from the poor and he did not get the rich’s almsgiving.  He thought that the rich had already had merit to be wealthy. Thus he did not need to bring blessings for them while the poor should sow the blessing seed so that they would not be poor in the future. Therefore, monks should help the poor to collect merit through getting their almsgiving.

The attitude of the two monks became the two extremes; Lord Buddha rebuked them for their thinking. According to Buddha’s view point, monks needed to keep the balanced mind, not to have discrimination or prejudiced opinions. Those who stand for this side of the line will have the front facing towards that side. It is the antagonism itself that makes wars and unbalance causing many disasters in our lives. Lord Buddha went to renounce for cultivation because he wanted to flatten the inequality and unjust. Then Buddha’s teachings contain ecumenism and without distinction between the poor and the rich. The right alms is no difference between the rich and the poor. All monks needed to obey this regulation of alms which must be sequenced. With the good qualities of saint, Subhuti and Mahakasyapa easily obeyed Buddha’s teaching. After that they went out for alms, they did not make difference between the poor and the rich so that they could give all beings blessings.

From the above story, Buddhists never thought that  Arhats, Bodhisattvas had such a “wrong approach” , but it is sure that Lord Buddha and all saints appeared as the same position with us in order to remind the disciples of having “right method” for teaching all beings, just as our Guru has taught:

 “Buddhist teachings are absolutely right, but Buddhists who have wrong method of practicing should get bad consequences, instead of getting the good results. Buddha taught compassionately 84,000 methods to those who have different approaches to the Buddha-dharma in order to attain the ultimate liberation. What does the figure of 84,000 mean? It is necessary that the Guru with a wealth of knowledge about Buddhist teachings has the right pedagogical methods to teach the disciples.”

There is also a phrase in Confucianism: “invariability responds to variables” which reminds people of having right method for different circumstances and still not losing the consistency of “their right”

I remembered the bittern cases of the disciples themselves that our Guru have ever known, and rebuked; I would like to tell some cases. In the first case of mine, when I met a person who asked if he could smoke during dharma practice, then I had rushed to say no; as a result, he gave up practicing dharma as the Guru anticipated. The first cause of the mistake was that I thought everyone could quit smoking successfully in only one time the same as Mat Phuong’s case (I do not know how hard to give up smoking because of my ignorance of smoking, not due to my ego). The second reason relied on the documents confirming that smoking was not allowed during dharma practice, if I dared to say something contrary to the documents, I was afraid to be rebuked by the Guru.

Later, I have learnt “listening or reading, thinking, and cultivating” from the Guru then I understood that all “variations” coming from Bodhichitta are right Dharma. And clinging too much to dharma leads to the practice of wrong dharma. If we make action with Right View but still fear of being scolded by our Guru, we are not true practitioners. We only practice dharma in order that the Guru gives us a praise to flatter our ego.

The second case, in which I guided the beginner to chant “The guidance to practice Tibetan Buddhism” from beginning to end, was also wrong. Then they were too tired to give up as the Guru predicted. The cause of the error was my greed of dharma practice. I wanted the beginner to “skip a step” and I had goodwill to say all what I know in order that he could learn all once time. I got no result.

In the third case, when I met many people who were busy for daily life did not really pay attention to impermanence, they thought as if they could long live for thousand years. Thus I quoted a few phrase of Padmasambhava to awaken and guide them to the Buddha -dharma: “Those who do not pay attention to dharma practice when they are young are seen as the stupid man“, and again: “Those who do not practice dharma with the precious human life are more hideous than a lepers”. Namo Amitabha! I was just about beaten for daring to provoke them. They became hating Buddhism because I gave them the “overdose of wakening”. My mistake was due to my wrong thinking that whoever not knowing Buddha- dharma was pitiful, whoever not approaching Tantric Buddhism was more regrettable. I do not know that Buddhist practitioners have “holy pride”, but ordinary people have “good pride”. Everyone all have the right to choice which is the best for them, I should suggest or consult dharma for their reference. It is up to them to practice dharma or not.

However, I impatiently go straight to the main point of Buddha – dharma when they still have no intention to receive Buddhist teaching. So I get eventually only failure. Just as we want to give them the precious book while they are only able to spell the letter. Or just as we want to invite them to enjoy sea food dishes while they are suffering from Gout; Or just as we want to give them headache drugs while they have stomach ache. They will not say any word of express gratitude to us no matter what we give them such as precious book or seafood dishes or expensive drugs because they do not need such precious things. The solution is to give the precious book to those who need to read more; to invite them seafood dishes after helping them a cure of gout. So they need to spend time on studying other field before returning this filed, they cannot “skip a step”

Lotus Flower Estrade at night

In the fourth case, I gave up worshiping cooking Gods and worshiping the death anniversary of ancestor. But it is impossible for many people to do like that. Although they have heard all about the Buddhist teachings and know that no souls can enjoy the food after 49 days of the death, they do sill not abandon the worship of death anniversary because of their clinging to the cultural traditions of death anniversary (Guru has written as follows: “Lord Buddha foresaw this situation, he always recommended high-ranking monks that wherever  they traveled to guide the sentient beings for the enlightened path, and they needed to focus on the factors of  Age, Country as well as Ethnicity”. According to morals (Li) sutra, Kongzi said: “Treat the death as if they were dead would be inhuman. You should not do that. But regard them as the people who live there will be ridiculous. You should not do that.” Therefore, he did not admit the existence of souls, but he also did not criticize the ancestor worship because it was the traditional culture making the national tradition. If layman Buddhist having “right knowledge” do not make ancestor worship, they would be ostracised from the community, the family and society. So the Buddhist practitioners who practice dharma not only get no success in their life but also immediately have trouble because of their cling to dharma. It is “right Buddhist teaching but wrong method of dharma practice”. In this case, Buddhist practitioners have only the method that they visualize the Yidam and dedicate the merits to them in other realms on their death anniversary. It is perfect if you can make fully detachment, if you cannot, you should make renunciation in your mind, and you should not make detachment from your external appearance or your physical body.

I would like to end my writing here.

Paying homage to my compassionate Guru

May all sentient beings attain the happiness of Buddha’s nature.

Om Ah Hum.

Your disciple – Mat Kien

Translated by Mat Dieu Hang

Original Vietnamese post: Bài 3: GIÁO PHÁP ĐÚNG, PHƯƠNG PHÁP SAI ( Từ bỏ sở kiến chủ quan )

The same Topic: 

Lesson 1: Five arguments from a profound and rigorous philosopher, Dharmakirti)

Lesson 2: Focusing on the factors of Age, Country and Ethnicity

Lesson 3: Abandoning the subjective opinions

Lesson 4: A rich man lost the key of his treasury

Lesson 5: One Mantra, one Bodhichitta

Lesson 6: Admiration but independence on formality

Lesson 7: Mantra with its phonetic symbol

Lesson 8: Renouncing what needs renouncing

Lesson 9: Attaching to dharma resulting from clinging to ego

Lesson 10: Practice Dharma in daily activities (Tu trong trạng thái động)

  1. Kanji says:
    ​Dear Guru,
    I’ve read through this article.
    May our Guru and Dakini live long for the sake of all sentient beings.
    May all sentient being achieve the happiness of Buddha’s nature
    Om ah hum
  2. Tantra Kasila(Vivek S) says:
    Dear Guru,
    I have read the lesson 3. I am thankful for your wonderful article. I understood that there is no universal solution that can be applicable for all beings. Every human beings will be having different life style.So Inorder to attain the goal different methods have to be practiced.These methods are dharmas
    May the Guru live long for the sake of all beings.
    May all beings achieve the happiness of Buddha’s nature.
    Om Mani Padme Hum.
  3. Akshay kumar says:

    Dear Guru
    I have read this article. It is a very interesting one. Thank you so much.

    I understand same method of practising dharma may not be suitable to all beings. Different beings may require to practice different method depending on his karma. Hope these disciples may be guided the right method of practice through their guru or through their 6th sense.
    May the Guru live long for the sake of all beings.
    May all beings achieve the happiness of Buddha’s nature.
    Om Mani Padme Hum.

    • Kính bạch Thầy!

      Con xin phép dịch comment của đạo hữu Akshay Kumar sang tiếng Việt như sau ạ:

      “Kính bạch Thầy!

      Con đã đọc bài này rồi ạ. Con cảm ơn Thầy vì vài viết hay. 

      Qua đó, con hiểu được rằng cùng một phương pháp thực hành  không thể phù hợp với tất cả mọi chúng sanh. Chúng sanh khác nhau nên được học theo phương pháp thực hành khác nhau tùy thuộc vào duyên nghiệp của họ. Con hy vọng rằng các Phật tử đều tìm được vị Thầy dạy cho họ phương pháp đúng để thực hành Phật pháp theo duyên nghiệp của họ.

      Con cầu nguyện Thầy trụ thế lâu dài vì sự lợi lạc của chúng sanh.

      Cầu nguyện tất cả chúng sanh thành tựu hạnh phúc của Phật tánh.

      Om Mani Padme Hum.”

  4. Salvatore Antonio Fois says:

    Venerebol Guru;

    My name is Tantra Siramitra.

    Thank you for the interesting comment you made.

    GURU devotion it’s extremely important for our spiritual atchivement athers ways it’s like working blindfolded not knowing where we are going!

    The right Holy Dharma, or the right path to follow we listen to the comments off our Ariya Guru so we can be shuar we are in the right path of cultivation. For our ansistars in which the passed away, I just dedicated some mantras in there behaves, and all sentient beings in which the left this would and wishing them to meat the Holly Dharma like we did and get the benifit, and blessings of all Buddha’s of the three times.  MAY AVERYONE Be HAPPY, MAY AVERYONE Be FREE FROM MISERY, MAY NO ONE HEVER BE SEPARATED FROM THE HAPPINESS, MAY AVERYONE HAVE ACUANIMITY FREE FROM ETREAD AND ATTACHMENT



  5. Steve Rogers says:

    Dear Holy Guru

    thank you for yourself and your disciple for bringing me this lesson. The way it was written helped me clarify my own Dharma practice, it is a real blessing.

    My practice is to set an example, to help and be kind; not for myself and my ego but to bring about a reduction in suffering for all sentient beings.

    I would like to add my own story.

    i was driving the other day and saw two adult swans caring for their cygnets. They were not doing anything against their nature, they were not doing it to show off, they were not doing it for their ego, they were doing it to keep their young safe. In doing so they reduced the suffering of the young, and brought delight to me as it was a beautiful site. This brought me to a state where my suffering,for many days, was reduced every time I thought of it.

    if two sentient beings born as swans can achieve so much, how much more can I achieve with being blessed by having the ability to read the Dharma and do Dharma practice for the benefit of others achieve, as long as I do what is natural. As long as I follow the path set out by the Buddha and not undertaking actions for my self.

    I ask for your attention Holy Guru so that I can continue on this path for the benefit of others.

    May I practice Dharma all days and nights

    May the holy Guru and his disciples have good health and live long for the benefit of all sentient beings. May all sentient beings achieve the happiness of Buddha ‘s nature.

    for your consideration Holy Guru

    Om mani padme hum

  6. Dr. C H Lakshmi narayan. says:

    Respected Guruji,I bow my head at the lotus feet of Guruji.

    I am Tantra Nirvadeva

    Lord Buddha noticed and criticised some of the respected disciples who took ” Wrong approach in Buddhist teachings ” which lead to the difficulty  in practicing Dharma namely meditation and chanting Mantras ,  according to the suitable nature of the people  by Saripthraand Moudgalyana   Or  as in the case of blacksmith and fisherman in alms- recieving from poor and rich by SubhuthiOr and Mahakasyapa according to their own  “wrong views ” ! Thus discriminating  between poor and rich  and not teaching Buddhism according to the nature and professions of the people.!

    Regarding death anniversary of Ancisters, as is the custom and cultural tradition in many places, though Buddha did not admit the existence of souls, but he didn’t criticize the Ancisters  worship!.It is right Buddhist teaching but wrong method of Dharma Practice  if you abstain them from observing their cultural traditions and customs.

    Om Mani Padme Hum.

    Long live our Guruji for upholding Dharma

    Dr.C H Lakshminarayan.



    • Kính bạch Thầy!

      Con xin phép dịch comment của đạo hữu Tantra Nirvadeva (C H Lakshminarayan) sang tiếng Việt như sau:

      “Kính bạch Thầy tâm linh tôn quý!

      Con xin cúi đầu đảnh lễ dưới chân sen của Thầy.

      Con là Tantra Nirvadeva.

      Sau khi đọc bài viết này, con hiểu rằng đức Phật đã không tán thành và quở trách một số đệ tử của ngài đã áp dụng phương pháp sai. Ví dụ như trường hợp ngài Mục Kiền Liên và ngài Xa Lợi Phất đã áp dùng phương pháp sai để giáo hóa học trò là thợ rèn và  người câu cá. Vì hai ngài Mục Kiền Liên và Xá Lợi Phất không hiểu bản chất công việc của học trò và không hiểu hoàn cảnh của họ nên đã gây khó khăn cho họ trong việc thực hành pháp như tham thiền  đối với thợ rèn và niệm hồng danh Phật hiệu đối với người câu cá, trái ngược với thói quen công việc hàng ngày của họ.  Hoặc như trường hợp của hai ngài Tu Bồ Đề và Ma Ha Ca Diếc cũng từng có phương pháp sai khi áp dụng giáo hóa cực đoan trong lĩnh vực phước điền. Ngài Tu Bồ Đề chỉ đến nhà giàu khất thực, còn ngài Ma Ha Ca Diếc chỉ khất thực nhà nghèo để gieo phước điền theo quan kiến chủ quan của các ngài. Chính sự phân biệt giàu nghèo của các ngài đã làm trái tinh thần bình đẳng không phân biệt giai cấp, nghề nghiệp trong lời dạy của đức Phật.

      Còn về việc xả ly cúng giỗ ông bà cụ kỵ, một số nơi việc tổ chức cúng giỗ ông bà là truyền thống văn hóa, phong tục. Mặc dù đức Phật không chấp nhận sự tồn tại linh hồn của người chết lâu như ông bà nhưng đức Phật không chỉ trích truyền thống cúng giỗ. Nếu như Phật tử xả ly việc cúng giỗ ông bà một cách cực đoan, kêu gọi mọi người tẩy chay những truyền thống văn hóa và phong tục của họ thì cũng là trường hợp áp dụng phương pháp sai.

      Om Mani Padme Hum.

      Con thành tâm cầu nguyện Thầy trụ thế lâu dài vì sự nghiệp hoằng dương chánh pháp.

      Con – C H Lakshminarayan.”

  7.  Tantra Mahavita says:

    QUERIDO GURU : Muchas Gracias por compartir sus interesantes articulos . Entiendo que el mismo metodo de practica del dharma, es diferente para cada individuo. Diferentes seres practican diferentes metodos . Dependiendo de su karma. Y el Guru con su Sabiduria guia a sus discipulos por el metodo correcto .Profundo agradecimiento por ser bendecido por tener la capacidad de leer el Dharma y practicar el Dharma  y asi seguir el camino establecido por el Buda y no emprender acciones para mi auto. Pido su atencion Guru Santo para que pueda continuar en este camino para beneficio de los demas . Puedo practicar el Dharma todos los dias y noches . Que el Guru tenga salud y pueda vivir muchos años para beneficio de todos los seres sintientes . Que todos los seres encuentren la felicidad y sus causas. OM MANI PADME HUM

  8. Jennifer/ Tantra Amishuta says:
    Desert holy guru,

    Once again your lesson and this letter is right on point. I was discussing these things today and reading about similar things. You are wonderful holy guru for you teach in appropriate ways for each of our understanding. I appreciate your hard work and dedication to your disciples and to Buddha. Thank you for your live, time, and patience as well add your understanding of things such as my personal mental health issues. I am grateful to have such a wonderful teacher. May you live ling and blessed for sale of all sentient beings. Om mani padme hum

    • Kính bạch Thầy!

      Con xin phép dịch comment của đạo hữu Tantra Amishuta sang tiếng Việt như sau:

      “Kính bạch Thầy tâm linh tôn quý!

      Bài viết của Thầy một lần nữa đã chỉ ra cho con hiểu về chánh kiến. Hôm nay, con đang thắc mắc về vấn đề này và con được đọc về những điều này. Phương pháp dạy của Thầy tôn quý thật tuyệt vời, phù hợp với trình độ của chúng con giúp chúng con hiểu dễ dàng. Con hoan hỷ tán thán công hạnh, sự nhiệt tâm của Thầy dành cho chúng con cũng như trong công cuộc hoằng pháp.

      Con cảm tạ ơn Thầy đã để tâm, dành thời gian và kiên nhẫn với chúng con; đặc biệt Thầy đã hiểu những người có vấn đề về sức khỏe thần như con.

      Con cảm thấy mình ơn phước khi được học một vị Thầy tuyệt vời như Thầy.

      Con cầu nguyện Thầy khỏe mạnh và trường thọ vì sự lợi lạc của tất cả chúng sanh.

      Om Mani Padme Hum.”

  9. Lan Trần says:
    Dear Mat Kien,

    I really rejoice in reading your article. You are so right that there haven’t any remedy dharma that is suitable for all sentient beings. It is the fact that sentient beings have different karma and spiritual levels, hence they should be given different methods to best resolve their problems. The story of two great disciples of the Buddha is an example of “right Buddhist teachings, wrong methods of dharma practice”.

    Thank you for your sharing. I am looking forward to reading more of your articles.

    Om Mani Padme Hum.

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