In this dharma talk, Mingyur Rinpoche introduces us to Shamata meditation, exploring how everything can be transformed into an object of meditation, even our biggest obstacles in life.
Born in 1975, Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche is a much-loved and accomplished Tibetan Buddhist meditation teacher. 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.
Shamata: Tranquility of the Mind
Mingyur Rinpoche begins with a brief Shamata meditation. We can all experience this tranquility of the mind, calm and aware; it’s easier than taking a drink of water. Rinpoche talks about how easily we get lost following our thoughts in ‘crazy monkey mind,’ and how our lofty goals for meditation make us believe it’s much more difficult than it actually is.
“Your mind thinks, ‘Meditation is something else, something special. If I meditate today, who knows, tomorrow I can fly.’” – Mingyur Rinpoche
Mingyur Rinpoche explores the essence of love and compassion with Raghu Markus and Krishna Das in Mindrolling Ep. 407
Meditation with Objects (13:35)
Rinpoche introduces us to a more advanced meditation technique, meditation with objects. He explores the six phenomena that make the ‘crazy monkey mind’ go crazy, using the phenomena of form as an example. Rinpoche talks about how these phenomena can be used as objects of meditation, sharing his story of dealing with crippling panic attacks as a boy.
“‘I like,’ ‘I don’t like,’ ‘I don’t know.’ Those three things are always there. And because of those three things, those three perceptions with this flower, there’s three flowers: a good flower, a bad flower, a so-so flower. And these three flowers obscure the real flower. You cannot see the real flower directly.” – Mingyur Rinpoche
Transforming Obstacles (26:40)
Rinpoche continues the story of how dealt with his panic disorder by turning it into an object of meditation. He talks about transforming our biggest obstacles in life into solutions; suffering can be transformed into happiness. Rinpoche was able to transform his panic disorder from an enemy into a friend he uses as support for his meditation practice.
“So the best is transform: problem becomes solution, suffering transforms into happiness, poison transforms into medicine.” – Mingyur Rinpoche