In this special episode of the Mindrolling Podcast, Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, Tibetan teacher and master of the Karma Kagyu and Nyingma lineages of Tibetan Buddhism, shares a conversation with Raghu Markus and Krishna Das about navigating the path of spiritual practice.
Born in 1975, Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche is a much-loved and accomplished Tibetan Buddhist meditation teacher. From a young age, he was drawn to a life of contemplation. In addition to extensive training in the meditative and philosophical traditions of Tibetan Buddhism, Rinpoche has maintained a lifelong interest in Western science and psychology. Rinpoche currently teaches throughout the world, with centers on four continents. His candid and often humorous accounts of his own personal difficulties have endeared him to Buddhist and non-Buddhist students alike. Learn more about Rinpoche and find his worldwide teaching schedule at tergar.org.
Born On The Path
Mingyur Rinpoche shares a bit of his childhood in Nepal. He describes what it was like to study under his father, Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche, who comes from a lineage of Buddhist teachers.
“I learned meditation from my father when I was nine years old. It is amazing to have such a great meditator as my father. So many people are born and after that, they look for a meditation teacher. I am lucky, just being born and there is a teacher.” – Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche
A Monk’s Journey (7:00)
We hear the account of Mingyur Rinpoche’s decision as a young man to leave behind his family, his roles and attachments in pursuit of realization. He speaks about the merits of exposing oneself to a path of practice that gradually intensifies in difficulty and reward.
“In our lives, many times, there might be some challenges. Challenges from the environment, physical challenges or mental challenges – things like that are a really great opportunity to transform.” – Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche
Courage is a Really Big Thing (22:10)
Our group discusses the importance of courage and hope in getting us through our greatest challenges. They look at the ways we grow when we face our fears head on persevere through hard times.
“For a long time it was very quiet. Maharaj-ji was just lying on a bed and all of a sudden he looks at me and says, ‘ Courage is a really big thing.’ There were times in my life where all I had was the memory of that moment. It was enough to get me through terrible times.” – Krishna Das
Through the Bardos of Living, Dying and The Moment (26:40)
Mingyur Rinpoche speaks about the intermediate space of the Bardo that offers the best opportunity we have to connect with our most fundamental nature. He examines the Bardos that exist in our lives which allow us to be present and reflect our true nature in that space. The group speaks with Rinpoche about the practices that allow us to cultivate the awareness to enter into the Bardo of the moment.
Letting Go (48:25)
Rinpoche talks about integrating his experiences as a mendicate yogi. Wandering the land, begging for food and embracing all that life had to offer him – including near death. He describes the immense peace and awareness that he encountered while in grips of deadly illness.
“It was a great experience for me. It was the most difficult, but that was the best experience for me I think. Before that, I had a lot of fear and insecurity. Afterward, my journey was really wonderful.” – Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche