An Exhortation to Tibetans
by Khenmo Rigdzin Chödrön
You have conquered all the sufferings of saṃsāra, so difficult to bear,
And offer swift protection as the deity who embodies the buddhas’ activity,
Goddess who is without the eight flaws and gives vision to all beings:
Throughout all my lives, I honour you at the crown of my head!
If we do not relax our intense feelings of longing
For attractive objects of desire, outer and inner,
Happiness will never arise in our limited minds.
Therefore, to have few desires is my exhortation.
The inability to tolerate the wealth that others have,
Which they have gained through merit and effort,
Will eventually be the cause of our own downfall.
Therefore, to abandon envy is my exhortation.
The wealth and splendour that we amass is meaningless,
And even if we cling to it, unable to offer it to others,
It is never truly ours, only a cause of further suffering.
Therefore, to abandon miserliness is my exhortation.
While lacking basic human qualities such as a noble temperament
Or great learning and knowledge of the five sciences,
We might be puffed up by the thought of some minor virtue,
But to abandon such pride is my exhortation.
So that the excellent tradition of being polite and respectful
To the parents who have cared for us since we were tiny,
And to other men and women senior in years does not decline,
To respect one’s elders is my exhortation.
Forsaking entirely inappropriate, negative behaviour,
Such as being unreliable, undignified and immodest,
Acting with impropriety or spoiling one’s own body,
To respect one’s spouse is my exhortation.
Since you must offer the very greatest wealth, an education,
To the sons and daughters born from your own bodies,
Do not neglect them like animals, but teach them properly:
Thus, to raise your children with love is my exhortation.
Without due care, we’ll confuse what must be adopted and avoided,
And, in others’ eyes, appear hostile, even crazed,
Losing our stability and opening the way to errors:
Thus, to abandon carelessness is my exhortation.
| Translated by Adam Pearcey at the suggestion of Alak Zenkar Rinpoche, 2017.