Essential Teachings

A couple months ago, a friend gave me this book entitled ” Essential Teachings “ by The Dalai Lama. It was one enlightening read. He writes in the most simplest form, but with calm passion and a clear insight. In his book, he says:

” Look around us at this world that we call civilized and that for more than 2000 years has searched to obtain happiness and avoid suffering by false means: trickery, corruption, hate, abuse of pwer, and exploitation of others. We have searched only for individual and material happiness, opposing people againts each other, one race againts another, social systems against others. This has lead to a time of fear, of suffering, murder, and famine. If in India, Africa and other countries misery and famine rule, it is not because of natural resources are lacking, nor that the means of bringing about lasting well-being are flawed. It is because each person has looked only for his own profit without fear of oppressing others for selfish goals, and this sad and pitiful world is the result. The root of this civilization is rotten, the world suffers, and if it continues in this way, it will suffer more and more. “

 Then there was a question about death, why we shouldn’t be afraid to face it. He said:

” From the moment we are born we can certain that we will die, and from that instant we approach death with each second. Death will arrive like a brutal bolt of lightning without our foreseeing or expecting it. Since the beginning of this world, people have been born, then die. Not one avoided the conditions of nature. Birth and death are those conditions. “

He also shared his insights about love and friendship…

” Before granting our trust to someone, we must assure ourselves that they deserve it, meaning that the person has the power to help us. Only when we are certain of this do we entrust ourselves to them. “

Then, his teachings about definitive meanings:

The Four Reliances: (1) We must not rely on the person of the master, but on what he teaches. (2) Concerning the teaching- we must not rely on the beauty or the sweetness of the words, but on their meaning. (3) Regarding the meaning or meanings of teaching- we must not rely on those that must be interpreted. (4) Regarding the definitive meanings- we must not rely on a dualistic understanding but on nonceptual wisdom, the realization of emptiness.

The Dalai Lama’s last words in his book:

Goodness and the purest of intentions will clear the path towards happiness…



  1. eric aka senor enrique · July 8, 2007

    Thanks for sharing. I might grab a copy the next time I find myself in a bookstore.

  2. sardonicnell · July 8, 2007

    hi eric, thanks for the visit. and pls do grab a copy of “essential teachings.” got some lessons in life from reading it. God bless =)

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