We should be quite gentle in judging ourselves and remember that the habits we are fighting against come from beginningless time and are very strong. So from time to time there will be some backsliding — though in the long run there is progress and improvement. Furthermore, remember that even having entered the gate of the Dharma, having the intention to reduce our disturbing emotions, or being concerned about disturbing emotions is amazing because most people involved in samsara never even think about this.
– Thrangu Rinpoche
from the book “Luminous Clarity: A Commentary on Karma Chagme’s Union of Mahamudra and Dzogchen”
With thanks to Just Dharma Quotes
Our mind is the basis of everything, and from our mind everything arises, Samsara and nirvana, ordinary sentient beings and enlightened ones. Consider the way beings transmigrate in the impure vision of samsara: even though the essence of the mind, the true nature of our mind, is totally pure right from the beginning, nevertheless, because pure mind is temporarily obscured by the impurity of ignorance, there is no self-recognition of our own state. Through this lack of self-recognition arise illusory thoughts and actions created by the passions. Thus various negative karmic causes are accumulated and since their maturation as effects is inevitable, one suffers bitterly, transmigrating in the six states of existence. Thus, not recognizing one’s own state is the cause of transmigration, and through this cause one becomes the slave of illusions and distractions.
This endless film show is being played in our mind – moment to moment mind states – and that is projected out in front of us as our external reality. Now as long as we are fascinated by the movie in front of us, then we believe it and we become deeply involved in what appears to be happening. But if we look back and realize it’s just a mind-show that we are projecting, then even though we can still enjoy it, we are not going to be totally devastated if it’s a tragedy or completely engulfed if it’s a romance. We know it’s just a movie.
As long as we are in samsara, whatever our lifestyle in the world, it is only suffering. Before we enter that lifestyle, we see samsara as a beautiful park, a pleasant park, but once we are involved in that lifestyle, we experience so many problems.
– Lama Zopa Rinpoche
When you are young and vigorous
You never think of old age coming,
But it approaches slow and sure
Like a seed growing underground.
When you are strong and healthy
You never think of sickness coming,
But it descends with sudden force
Like a stroke of lightning.
When involved in worldly things
You never think of death’s approach.
Quick it comes like thunder
Crashing round your head.
Sickness, old age and death
Ever meet each other
As do hands and mouth.
Waiting for his prey in ambush,
Yama is ready for his victim,
When disaster catches him.
Sparrows fly in single file. Like them,
Life, Death and Bardo follow one another.
Never apart from you
Are these three ‘visitors’.
Thus thinking, fear you not
Your sinful deeds?
Like strong arrows in ambush waiting,
Rebirth in Hell, as Hungry Ghost, or Beast
Is (the destiny) waiting to catch you.
If once into their traps you fall,
Hard will you find it to escape.
Do you not fear the miseries
You experienced in the past?
Surely you will feel much pain
If misfortunes attack you?
The woes of life succeed one another
Like the sea’s incessant waves
One has barely passed, before
The next one takes its place.
Until you are liberated, pain
and pleasure come and go at random
Like passers-by encountered in the street.
Pleasures are precarious,
Like bathing in the sun;
Transient, too, as snowstorms
Which come without warning.
Remembering these things,
Why not practice the Dharma?
from the book “The Hundred Thousand Songs of Milarepa, Vol. 2”
Like a child at the cinema, we get caught up in the illusion. From this comes all of our vanity, ambition, and insecurity. We fall in love with the illusions we have created and develop excessive pride in our appearance, our possessions, and our accomplishments. It’s like wearing a mask and proudly thinking that the mask is really you.
– Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche
from the book “What Makes You Not a Buddhist”
With thanks to Just Dharma Quotes