Bathed in wisdom’s brilliance – a day of Buddhist teachings in Bristol

On Saturday 5 March, we were delighted to host a day of teachings in Bristol with Lama Jampa Thaye.  For this first major event of 2022, we welcomed around 100 people from the UK and further afield and it was wonderful to be together again for this joyous occasion.

In the morning, Lama Jampa continued with part two of  ‘The Instructions to the Emperor’. This famous text was composed by Chogyal Phakpa, the fifth of the five founding teachers of the Sakya tradition, for his disciple Kublai Khan as an introduction to the essential paths of Buddhism. With exemplary lucidity it relates the key points in the development of ethics, meditation and wisdom, the three trainings that comprise the Buddhist path.

For this installment, the text covered the second training of meditation, from the practice of settling the mind to looking into mind itself to see if it has any shape, colour, location and so on. Then, we heard about what we should do once we get off our cushion; that is, we should bring our practice into everyday life by recollecting the need to maintain ethical behaviour or virtuous action, so the force of our practice is not dissipated. Finally, Chogyal Phakpa instructs Kublai Khan to seal all practice and activities with the eye of wisdom that sees the true nature of reality, as it is, understanding that all phenomena are empty, arising as they do in dependence on causes and conditions.

In the afternoon, Lama Jampa gave the initiation of the great Sakya master, Sakya Pandita. This initiation comes from the lineage of the 14th century master, Yak Mipham, who saw Sakya Pandita in a vision endowed with the attributes of Manjushri, a meditation deity associated with the development of wisdom.

We next welcome Lama Jampa to Bristol on 4 June.