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祖师大德的故事
Supporting Each Other in the Hard Time
作者:    发布时间:2011-6-23      点击率:3882

  ——A Story about Lama Rinpoche and His Gurus

  The 1960s in China was an era full of chaos and disturbance. Drastic changes took place in Tibet. The tranquil places like Changtai in Ganzi, Eastern Tibet was not excluded from the storm. All traditional values and culture were overturned over night. The lamas, who used to be respected by the local communities, were a major object of that revolution.


  His Holiness Chomgy Ari Rinpoche was a very reputable lama in Changtai area. He was one of the Four Heart-sons of Khenpo Ngag Wangpo. He led a very simple and destitute life of yogi with his two disciples-Lama Achiu Rinpoche and Aga Nyima. Although they did not have any land or personal wealth, they were still arrested for being lama and detained in a place called Azonga where they were confined in a small kitchen in disrepair.

  At that time the economic conditions in Tibet were extremely bad. Normal Tibetans could not have sufficient necessities for their daily lives, let alone the lamas practicing in austerity. Chomgy Ari Rinpoche, nearly sixty, had only several thin clothes hardly to defence the cold. Lama Rinpoche had a set of clothes that was torn to rags. Aga Nyima was almost naked. He begged for a cloth from his master. Chomgy Ari Rinpoche then gave him his own upper cloth to cover his body in the chilly winter.

  With tears in his eyes, Ari Rinpoche told his personal attendants “The very first teaching that the Buddha Shakyamuni gave to us was the truth of suffering in the Three Realms. That was to inspire the disciples to dedicate to their practice. Our sufferings now in such an era are just a very proof of this truth. We shall be more confident in the Buddha dharma. We shall cultivate our sympathy and compassion to all sentient beings a hey have been blind by confusion and karma. What they are doing now will lead to endless painful results in the future and their next lives. We cannot forget our missions to carry on the Buddha dharma and the vows to benefit all sentient beings.” Hearing this teaching, Lama Rinpoche and Aga Nyima found a peace in their mind.

  The next morning, Ari Rinpoche got up very early as usual and commenced his daily chanting. Having been hungry for several days, he felt too weak and tired to continue with his chanting. Then he asked Lama Rinpoche to bring him some water. Lama Rinpoche went out with his bowl immediately. A Chinese soldier was washing his face outside. Lama Rinpoche asked the soldier for a bowl of water. The soldier then drew a bowl of water from his basin and handed it to Lama Rinpoche. Then Lama Rinpoche offered this bowl of water to Ari Rinpoche. You may think that this water was totally dirty and undrinkable. But under the harsh circumstance it was invaluable nectar for survival. Aga Nyima, the elder attendant to Ari Rinpoche, was also very thirsty. He asked Lama Rinpoche to get another bowl of water for him. Lama Rinpoche went out to the soldier again. But the soldier refused in aversion of inconveniency.

  At about lunchtime, Ari Rinpoche said, “I am hungry. Can you find me some food?” The guards outside had just finished their lunch. When they saw Lama Rinpoche coming out with a bowl in hand, they gave him some crispy rice stuck on the bottom of the pot. But it was too hard to be chewed by Ari Rinpoche and Aga Nyima. A neighboured prisoner gave them a piece of raw pigskin. Lama Rinpoche offered it to Aga Nyima. Aga Nyima could not chew it with his loose teeth. Then he gave it back to Lama Rinpoche and asked him “It is still too hard. Can you please chew it soft first?” Then Lama Rinpoche chewed it soft first then offered it to Aga Nyima. In such a way they supported each other in that hard time.

  In another day, a Chinese official called Lama Rinpoche out for questioning. When Lama Rinpiche returned to the kitchen, he found that Ari Rinpoche and Aga Nyima had disappeared. “Where are they taken to?” he was dreadfully worried about their safety. A young man who had got well along with Lama Rinpoche offered him some baked barley meal and tea quietly. But Lama Rinpoche did not have the mood to eat, as he was too worried about the safety of the two elder masters.

  The next day, someone brought to Lama Rinpoche a bowl of yogurt and told him that it was from two old monks. Knowing that his masters were safe, Lama Rinpoche was finally relieved and happy.

[Post Script]

  Phurba Tashi Rinpoche says, “The Buddha is a mahasiddha who has attained the ultimate merits of all abandonments and achievements. Most Buddhists nowadays know the theory that all sentient beings have the Buddha nature and will achieve the Buddhahood eventually. However, just like anyone who wants to achieve success in his worldly life has to do a lot of hard work, it is not an easy job to abandon ignorance, liberate oneself from the Ocean of Samsara and then attain the ultimate Buddhahood. Without correct guidance from a qualified master and devoted austerity to demolish one’s karma, attaining the ultimate Buddhahood is merely a dream.

  In some people’s mind, they admire the solemnity and sanctity of Buddha on the one hand, but on the other hand they regard Buddha as a legendary figure who is far removed from the masses and reality. Such awe to Buddha can surely bring some merits. But in our practice, this is detrimental to our faith in gaining the ultimate Buddhahood within one lifetime. Arrogance is a barrier to the practice. But self-contempt is even worse. Arrogance comes from the ignorance of the stages of practice and the respective merits at each stage. But if a practitioner has lost his faith in attaining the ultimate Buddhahood, it is definitely impossible for him to achieve any accomplishment within this very lifetime. The unparalleled blessing of a sublime lineage can let us see with our own eyes what the term Buddha really means and how close and achievable the Buddhahood is as long as we dedicated to practicing in the right way.”

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