If we wish to practice the Dharma authentically but we do not have faith, however much we listen, reflect, and meditate, it will not bear fruit. Our practice will be without light, like the world before dawn when there is no sun.
We also need to use the field of pure discipline. To practice the Dharma, it is essential to have the solid foundation of the Pratimoksha, Bodhisattva, and Secret Mantrayana vows. Without these it is impossible to practice the Dharma, just as it is impossible to build a big house without having firm ground to build on.
Once we have this well-prepared field, we can plant in it the seeds of concentration from which experiences and realization will grow. We also have to take care of the field properly, to till the earth, spread manure, and water it; and the sun must shine on the field to warm it.
If all these conditions are brought together properly, then the crop of wisdom will grow without difficulty. And just as a good harvest brings wealth, with these three trainings, the trainings of discipline, concentration, and wisdom, it is certain we will attain liberation.
Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche
from the book Zurchungpa's Testament
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Further quotes from the book Zurchungpa's Testament:
- Just as space
- Recognizing awareness
- Nothing else than the projection of one’s own mind
- Suitable vessels
- The even state of all-pervading peace
- When true realization dawns in one’s mind
- Two great sources of fear in samsara
- First mature your own mind
- What a waste of time
- Not outside yourself
- Perceiving everything in its natural purity
- Like two expressions on the same face
- No other way
- Just leave it like it is
- Free from the extreme of existence and that of nonexistence
- All perceptions are similar to a dream
- Complete absence of doubt
- Examine your actions very closely
- Not fabricated, never stained