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Chapters 5-6: Verses 123–126

Chapters 5-6: Verses 123–126

Part of a series of teachings on Aryadeva’s 400 Stanzas on the Middle Way given on an annual basis by Geshe Yeshe Thabkhe from 2013-2017.

Motivation from Atisha’s Entering into the two Truths

Life is short and many the kinds of knowledge;
Let him who knows not even his own life’s span,
Choose only from his purest desires,
As the goose strains milk from water.

  • Uncertainty of death and importance of setting correct priorities in life and practice
  • Good foundation of ethical discipline, practice of six perfections, and clear aspirational prayers as the cause of a succession of fortunate rebirths, liberation, and full omniscience

Verses 123-126

  • Bodhisattvas can take special physical forms to accomplish the well-being of others
  • Additional comments on attaining the ultimate and the conventional bodhicitta and correlation of these with Buddha bodies
  • The result of doing the bodhisattva deeds
  • Reasons for weak conviction in Mahayana teachings
  • Refuting that tormenting the body with asceticism eliminates negative karma and disturbing emotions

Geshe Yeshe Thabkhe

Geshe Yeshe Thabkhe was born in 1930 in Lhokha, Central Tibet and became a monk at the age of 13. After completing his studies at Drepung Loseling Monastery in 1969, he was awarded Geshe Lharampa, the highest degree in the Geluk School of Tibetan Buddhism. He is an emeritus professor at the Central Institute of Higher Tibetan Studies and an eminent scholar of both Madhyamaka and Indian Buddhist studies. His works include Hindi translations of The Essence of Good Explanation of Definitive and Interpretable Meanings by Lama Tsongkhapa and Kamalasila's commentary on the Rice Seedling Sutra. His own commentary, The Rice Seedling Sutra: Buddha’s Teachings on Dependent Arising, was translated into English by Joshua and Diana Cutler and published by Wisdom Publications. Geshela has facilitated many research works, such as a complete translation of Tsongkhapa’s The Great Treatise on the Stages of the Path to Enlightenment, a major project undertaken by the Tibetan Buddhist Learning Center in New Jersey where he teaches regularly.