1. Bringing out the natural qualities inherent in us


    The teaching on precious human life shows us that this human body of ours has the potential to allow us to accomplish significant and vast things, not only for ourselves, but for many others. It points out just what an opportunity this human body represents. All human beings are fundamentally endowed with love, compassion and other positive qualities, not as products of religious practice, but as something present within us all right from birth. The most important thing, and the basis of Dharma practice, is for us to value these innate human qualities, and work to enhance and develop them.

    Therefore, to be a Dharma practitioner does not imply becoming someone different. There is no need to become a strange or new person. Nor are we necessarily adopting a whole new lifestyle. Rather, we are bringing out the natural qualities inherent in us, within the life we are already leading. For this reason, Dharma practice is not something we do apart from, or outside of, our ordinary life. ~ 17th Karmapa

  2. You exist in connection with others


    The aim is to be able to feel the extent to which others are extremely important and integral to you and also to gain an emotional awareness that you are never, ever really separate from them. Others are part of you, just as you are part of them. You exist in connection with others. When you see this, you can also see that your happiness and suffering depend upon others. If you think solely in terms of yourself and your own happiness, it simply does not work. There is no happiness without relying upon others. ~17th Karmapa



  3. If we are attached to petty concerns


    If we are attached to petty concerns and never aspired to anything great, we won’t accomplish much. What is petty and what is great? Petty is for oneself alone, for immediate gratification, and for harmful deeds, while great is for the many, for the long term, and for positive pursuits. Look closely – what have you or those around you achieved ? Avoid pettiness and aspire to great things! ~17th Karmapa

  4. True Wealth


    Are we willing to accept that having more wealth – no matter how someone acquires it – is a sign of being more advanced? Surely there are other measures we could use to determine if we have enough, besides comparing ourselves to those who happen to have amassed more money and things than we have. If the measure of success is having more than the people around us, then that is a recipe for failure.

    Comparing with others simply cannot bring happiness. Even if happiness did come from being the best or having the most, ultimately only one person in the world – the one with the most – could ever be truly happy or “successful.” Everyone else would be condemned to failure.

    I think we have to be very careful not to confuse economic success with personal happiness. Just because we have a market economy does not mean we have to have a market society. We can find ways to relate to each other on different principles than business ones. We could define development in terms of how much we are able to increase bonds of friendship and closeness, and by how central we make community and mutual affection.

    When I think of a society that creates happiness, I think of a society where compassion and love replace competition and greed as the emotional forces that bind us together.  ~ 17th Karmapa


  5. Like the light of the sun, moon and stars


    Like the light of the sun, moon and stars, may the love, compassion and
    wisdom shine forth. May they strike every single living being and dispel
    the darkness of ignorance, attachment and hatred that has lurked for ages in
    their being. When any living being meets with another may it be like the
    reunion of a mother and child who have long been separated. In a harmonious
    world such as this may I see everyone sleep peacefully to the music of
    non-violence. This is my dream. ~17th Gyalwa Karmapa Orgyen Trinley

  6. Start a New Life Every Morning


    by 17th Karmapa

    We sometimes wake up fresh in the morning yet still go through the day half asleep. Our busy 21st century lives overwhelm us with a relentless stream of immediate tasks. We lose sight of how precious it is just to have a human life.

    This is an awareness that we need to feel in our hearts. I would like to share with you a practice that I call ‘living your whole life in a single day.’ You can do this by starting with this thought in the morning: ‘I am starting a whole new life. It begins right now’. Initially, leave yourself a note at your bedside to remind you, and then slowly cultivate the habit of waking up with this thought.

    Your body is fresh from the night’s rest; when you wake up with this awareness, so does your mind. Ask yourself what kind of person you want to be in the life that you will live today. Throughout the day, remind yourself that your life is happening right now. In the afternoon, check to see how your life is going and readjust as needed. A whole lifetime of possibilities stretches out before you every moment.

    This is the basic truth of interdependence. Conditions are constantly shifting, and what seemed impossible earlier can suddenly become possible. Every moment counts. Every action counts. A single kind act can have a positive impact on the future of many others you share the earth with. You can change the course of the future in any moment. Do so consciously, and the whole world will benefit.

  7. Difference Without Division


    Diversity within a society does not have to be problematic; it can be a source of richness and enjoyment. We can recognize and enjoy differences, but we must be careful not to exaggerate their importance or solidify our differences. When we do, we easily lose sight of our shared humanity, and divide ourselves up into categories of us and them, higher and lower, better and worse. ~ 17th Karmapa

  8. A Joyful Aspiration: Sweet Melody for Fortunate Ones


    Om Swasti. The right-turning conch of pure compassion in body, speech, and mind
    Pours forth a stream of good intentions that never change.
    Thereby, may a sweet, resonant melody beyond compare, such music for the ears,
    Open the lotus petals of virtue, excellence, and goodness.

    It has the supreme nature of the Wish Fulfilling Tree, the ambrosial one.
    Musical tones of this stainless tree, granting every wish, are dulcet and pleasing.
    Throughout its branches the gems of lasting happiness nestle among their leaves.
    Sovereign in our realm, may the world be resplendent with the beauty of this tree.

    ~17th Karmapa



Live & Die for Buddhism


Maha Ghosananda

Maha Ghosananda

Supreme Patriarch of Cambodian Buddhism (5/23/1913 - 3/12/07). Forever in my heart...

Problems we face today

jendhamuni pink scarfnature

Of the many problems we face today, some are natural calamities and must be accepted and faced with equanimity. Others, however, are of our own making, created by misunderstanding, and can be corrected...

Major Differences

Major Differences in Buddhism

Major Differences in Buddhism: There is no almighty God in Buddhism. There is no one to hand out rewards or punishments on a supposedly Judgement Day ...read more

My Reflection

My Reflection

This site is a tribute to Buddhism. Buddhism has given me a tremendous inspiration to be who and where I am today. Although I came to America at a very young age, however, I never once forget who I am and where I came from. One thing I know for sure is I was born as a Buddhist, live as a Buddhist and will leave this earth as a Buddhist. I do not believe in superstition. I only believe in karma.

A Handful of Leaves

A Handful of Leaves

Tipitaka: The pali canon (Readings in Theravada Buddhism). A vast body of literature in English translation the texts add up to several thousand printed pages. Most -- but not all -- of the Canon has already been published in English over the years. Although only a small fraction of these texts are available here at Access to Insight, this collection can nonetheless be a very good place to start.

Just the way it is

1. Accept everything just the way it is.
2. Do not seek pleasure for its own sake.
3. Do not, under any circumstances, depend on a partial feeling.
4. Think lightly of yourself and deeply of the world.
5. Be detached from desire your whole life long.
6. Do not regret what you have done.
7. Never be jealous.
8. Never let yourself be saddened by a separation.
9. Resentment and complaint are appropriate neither for oneself nor... read more