Question: I have heard very clearly the importance of patience on the path to protect love. Can you give some pith advice on what to do when you lose your patience over and over again.
Garchen Rinpoche: When you lose your patience, you should recognize this and feel regret. Every time you should make the commitment that next time you are going to do better and that I will not lose patience again. Then you might not lose it the next time, but eventually you will lose it again. It is a training of habituation. You will not be able to miraculously stop being impatient without any training.
The pith instruction is habituation, perseverance. If you persevere in practice, your practice will definitely improve, and in the end you will never lose your patience. It is just like learning anything: it may be difficult in the beginning, but if we keep doing it over and over again, it becomes easy.
As your patience increases, you can take a vow: ‘”No matter how much they provoke me, I shall not get angry.” This is the essence of the bodhisattva vow.
It is a slow process, and you have to persist even if you fail in the beginning. No matter how often you fall, you must get up and do it again. As your patience increases, you can take a vow: ‘”No matter how much they provoke me, I shall not get angry.” This is the essence of the bodhisattva vow. But patience does not only apply to anger, it must be practiced with all emotions. When desire arises, you must not give in, but forbear; when jealousy arises, you must forbear; etc. If you are able to be patient with all thoughts and emotions, you will not fall under their power again. If you lack patience, you will again and again fall under the power of these emotions. Diligent forbearance is mindful awareness.