By Hungkar Dorje Rinpoche
To those who rely upon you with confident faith,
even if they are lazy and beset by distractions and diversions,
you bestow the blessings of intellect and eloquence.
Supreme deity Manjugosha, always look out for me!
You who appreciate the qualities of dharma,
who have faith and pure perception,
like-minded friend dedicated to the chaste practice of dharma,
would you care to listen to me for a little while?
Now, through the power of fully pure karma and merit,
born human with the leisures and resources of a vessel for dharma,
fortunate one for whom the circumstances for renunciation have arisen,
I heartily recommend that you exert yourself in the fully pure dharma.
A wide range of intense desires and distractions draw one,
like a slave, into never-ending and all consuming, fruitless toils.
Remove yourself far from that state of affairs,
so that your own way of life stays completely pure.
If one does not struggle to get ahead in this life,
or form allegiances based on attachment and aversion,
it is difficult indeed to be accepted in human society.
In that case, you should remain alone and dedicate yourself to dharma.
This well-endowed support is most difficult to obtain,
and by nature incredibly fragile. Therefore, the more I consider how one's life can be wasted on pointless activities,
the more repellent it seems.
Gain, honor, fame and material comfort,
as much as they are praised and revered by others,
just come and go in this life, like lightning flashes.
I wonder, instead, who will seek out that which is lasting and meaningful?
So many wonderful things appear; but of all those wonders,
the most wondrous, and glorious, are modest needs and contentment.
It is those wonders that make you wonderful.
A refined intellect, and the exhaustion of faults, too,
hinge upon the power of faith. Faith, in turn,
is contingent upon a continual sense of firm renunciation.
Therefore, don't let your sacred fortitude become lax.
This precious body we keep healthy with food and clothing,
without which it is readily destroyed. Accordingly,
if we properly care for this excellent support,
we will eventually, and profoundly, reach the heart of our excellent purpose.
Having few needs is a glorious flower that brings beauty to the world.
Keep it growing, and needless to say, don't neglect it.
Slowly climb the sacred stairs in the mansion
of training in total abandonment.
A holy mind is most precious of all; and so,
having begun to take interest in the dharma,
figure out what you need to do not to lose your bearings,
such that you feel ashamed by the slightest indecency.
A stable mind is the foundation for the path.
It is the auspicious basis for the glory of fruition,
and indeed, for each and every form of virtue.
Therefore, intelligent one, don't allow your mind to waver.
It is quite uncertain what becomes of those
who know a lot of texts, but lack faith,
or who pursue every thought that occurs to them.
Therefore, focus entirely on having faith and mental stability.
It is through faith that the ultimate, enduring state is realized,
and it is faith that brings stability to the mind; in fact,
this is the advice, and practice, of our root and lineage gurus.
Thus, continually develop your faith and devotion.
Prajna born of study and reflection is wonderful.
If, however, it removes faith and conviction,
it is just for show, a mere pretense.
Therefore, my advice is to generate sorrow [for samsara].
Rather than trying to study everything,
it is important to really take to heart whatever one has learned.
Though it may seem not much to understand the four reorienting reflections,
they will make you an authentic dharma person, and so are truly profound.
There are many, it would seem, who having studied many treatises
without understanding impermanence or the realities of this life,
deviate towards jadedness and false preaching.
Therefore, as much as you can, take whatever you have learned to heart.
My special advice, if you want your dharma practice to go well,
is to practice the yidam deity and dakini sadhanas, and especially guru yoga,
with real dedication, supplicating and imploring them with great fervor and yearning.
This brief composition has in mind, and at the same time conveys my best wishes for the monk Thubten Zopa, who is wholeheartedly dedicated to dharma. These few words of heart advice, written with the very finest intentions, were respectfully offered by Hungkar Dorje.
Translated at his request on lha bab duchen, November 24, 2013, by Sherab Dorje. Ge'o!