Meditation Pith Instructions book offers a rare view into the heart-to-heart transmission of oral instructions on meditation from His Eminence Garchen Rinpoche at Drikung Dharma Surya Center in August of 2015. The current, 8th, Garchen Rinpoche is a Tibetan lama, a realized yogi, a skillful teacher, and the beloved Guru of many of us. He is the incarnation of a 12th Century realized yogi named Gar Chodingpa, one of the heart disciples of the famed Jigten Sumgon, Kyobpa Rinpoche—founder of the Drikung Kagyu lineage, that can be traced back to the great translator Marpa Lotsawa, and the greatest yogi of Tibet, Milarepa.
The book contains an exposition of the practices of Shamatha and Generation Stage meditations, which have the nature of relative bodhicitta, and the practices of Vipassana and Completion Stage meditations, which have the nature of absolute bodhichitta—the ultimate nature of the mind. The practices of Shamatha and Vipassana are foundations for Mahamudra, Dzogchen, and Madhyamaka.
Although the book places greater emphasis on the meditation methods and practices from the perspective of meditative experience, this collection distills the heart essence of the Buddha’s teachings and Garchen Rinpoche’s guidance on the entire Buddha Dharma path—the infallible law of karma, emptiness, and bodhicitta as the basis of all Dharma practices. Garchen Rinpoche often says, “Love is the only cause of happiness…Love is the sunlight of the mind…The Buddha is nowhere apart from your own mind…Whenever you meditate, our minds are one…When you have boundless love for all sentient beings, you naturally realize the nature of the mind.”
This book would not be possible without unconditional support from Ina Trinley Wangmo for the oral translation, from my children for transcribing and endeavoring to make a text true to Rinpoche’s spoken words available to everyone, and from Kay Candler for diligently editing the transcriptions into book form. Our deepest gratitude goes to Khenpo Samdup for sharing his hard work on the Stages of Meditation book, and especially to Garchen Rinpoche for the precious teachings, personal experience, and profound instructions and advice that he has compassionately offered to us all.
Glorious, holy, venerable, precious, kind root and lineage lamas, divine assembly of yidams and assemblies of buddhas, bodhisattvas, yogins, yoginis, and dakinis dwelling in the ten directions, please hear our prayer: “May this treasury of sacred Dharma spread far and wide with our sole wish to benefit all sentient beings without exception and bring peace and happiness to the world.”
Drikung Dharma Surya Center, Fairfax, Virginia, USA