Join us for and evening and full day urban retreat : how to love yourself and others in challenging times with Lama Gursam
Suggested donation $40 Fri eve/Sat all day Or $20 Fri eve; $25 Sat day
Love is the wish that we and others should be happy. Love wishes for the benefit of self and others without any expectations. That is the academic definition of the term. All beings, human and non-human, young and old, have a natural desire for happiness. Everyone deserves happiness and no one deserves suffering. So love is most basic and important.
Love has to start with oneself. Love for oneself is most important for the beginning practitioner. It is very important to love oneself. In the tantric practice one cannot have a bad opinion of oneself, one must view oneself and others as deities. Therefore, loving oneself is very important. Loving oneself has to be practiced to recognize who we are. We all have the buddha nature. Everyone has the qualities of a buddha: love, compassion, joy, and equanimity. All these great qualities are within oneself. Therefore, we have buddha nature and can love oneself. When we recognize our own buddha nature we recognize everyone has these qualities. The only difference is that some recognize these qualities and some do not.
At practice time we start first with whomever has shown love to us. This can be our parents, friends, grand parents, or adopted parents. We have to recognize and remember who loves us. That is very important for the beginning meditation. It has to start with recognizing the love others have given us. We have to remember their kindness again and again. We don’t have to remember the negative feelings, but should remember the kindness that others have shown us. From remembering this some warm feeling will develop. So a feeling rises of love toward that person. We will wish that they be happy and that we can help them. That rises naturally in the heart. That is very important at practice time. Then slowly the feeling must extend to others, not just for oneself and the one who has loved us. Since others have the same desire for happiness that we do, our love must pervade to others. That doesn’t mean our love decreases for those who have loved us. Our love only increases as it spreads to others.
Lama teaches in English, and always tries to focus on the practical application of the Dharma in everyday life.
Lama Gursam went to monastery at a very young age, received teachings as a monastic, and studied and practiced as a monastic. Then Lama Gursam went to study in Tibetan University Sarnath, Varanasi, India to get both bachelors and masters degrees in Buddhist Philosophy, History, and languages. Upon graduation he received a special award for scholastic achievement from His Holiness the Dalai Lama.