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The Perfect Conduct of a Bodhisattva

Lama Dondrup Dorje teaching at the Palyul Tibetan Buddhist Meditation Centre in England

Gyelsay Togmay Sangpo (1295-1369), author of the classic Mahayana text ‘The 37 Practices of The Bodhisattvas’, was born in south-western Tibet in Sakya. After a challenging childhood, he was ordained as a novice monk at the age of 14, and during his monastic training he came to be known as Togmay Sangpo, after displaying signs of comprehension of the teachings of the great master Asangha, and was given the name, ‘The second Asangha’ (Tibetan: Togmay).

During the course of six days in May this year, Ven. Lama Dondrup Dorje gave an extensive commentary on ‘The 37 practices of the Bodhisattvas’ to a group of students at the Palyul Tibetan Buddhist Meditation Centre in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. Lama Dondrup Dorje’s teaching inspired students with an account of Togmay Sangpo’s life; giving many examples of how Togmay Sangpo transformed what other people perceive as suffering into a source of joy and happiness.

For Togmay Sangpo, hardships and sickness were a means of purifying negativity and obscuration; and a source of developing greater compassion for other sentient beings. It is said that Togmay Sangpo’s serenity was so profound and his compassion so expansive, that even his cat was affected, to such an extent that this cat lost all interest in hunting mice and became a vegetarian.

In this Audio Teaching, Ven. Lama Dondrup Dorje also gives examples of others great Bodhisattvas, and explains that by learning to accept both hardships and fortunate circumstances with humility and sincerity, we too can follow in their footsteps and turn our bodies into living monuments of joy.

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