I wrote a number of posts about Anam Thubten in the early years of this blog. Not so many lately, though that may change in the future.
I’ve followed his teachings for the last dozen years – via his books, his daylong retreats in Sacramento (which happen about once a year), and his recorded talks on the Dharmata Foundation website.
His profound gift is his ability to present some of the oldest and most revered teachings in Tibetan Buddhism in clear and accessible terms to audiences around the world.
In this interview, posted on Buddistdoor.net on December 20, he shared some of his suggestions and hopes for the coming year:
As we bid farewell to 2018 and move into the New Year of 2019, Rinpoche deeply wishes that we all meditate, regardless of spiritual belief or affiliation, and to commit to looking inward. “There are lots of wonderful teachers. And they can be regular people…as long as they have a good heart.”
The world is in a new period of uncertainty, and the energy of the globe is shifting unpredictably. In this context Rinpoche believes that the words “optimism” and “pessimism” are not helpful. “I wouldn’t say that we should be optimistic in the sense we try to shut off our minds and tell ourselves everything is hunky-dory. Yet too much pessimism leads to paralysis, and is an excuse for inaction. What we need is hope, an attitude of transformation and dealing with the urgent issues facing us. I’d like to have hope and faith in humanity rather than optimism.”
Yes! Hope is different from optimism, and much superior.
Yes, I think hope is the answer. Hope has an energy and an alignment of its own, and it really has the power to change events and actions.
We in the west, I think, are just beginning to understand the power of our thoughts and intentions. A few phrases along the way have stuck with me, not as absolute rules but as “rules of thumb” or “operating instructions.” One was Wayne Dyer, on a PBS special, saying “Worry amounts to giving mental energy to the things you don’t want to happen.” Another was one of the first Zen teachers I ever encountered, Cheri Huber, who used to say, “The quality of your life is determined by the contents of your consciousness.” We have only to look around us to see that this applies on the collective level as well…