Finding understanding within our hearts

Skill in living our lives,
like athletic or occupational skills,
has to be developed through practice.

We can train ourselves to search within,
questioning the source of our deepest yearnings.

Letting go of all preconceptions,
we can ask ourselves
what is really important to our lives,
what is it that will sustain us
through all forms of adversity.

The times when we feel most restless and lonely are
valuable opportunities to make friends with ourselves,
to find within our own hearts a new depth of understanding.

Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche
Knowledge of Freedom

TTMTSAU – FBOASB

Taking refuge in our hearts…

We can find satisfaction anywhere
-a simple walk may give more pleasure than any other entertainment.

But until we open our hearts,
there is little inspiration, inner light, or warmth to sustain us,
for we are constantly undermining ourselves.

Ultimately no one can help us very much unless we take the first step,
listen to ourselves, encourage ourselves, and
give ourselves confidence by taking refuge in our hearts.

Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche
Gesture of Balance

Our hearts are free…

Once our hearts are open,
all existence appears naturally beautiful and harmonious.

This is not just another fantasy –
it is possible to see or feel this way,
and this is the essence of the spiritual teachings.

The heart reveals all knowledge to us.

Why the heart and not the mind?

Because our egos control our heads, and
our hearts are much more free.

Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche
Gesture of Balance

A compassionate heart

Compassion is a healthy psychological attitude, because
it does not involve expectations or demands.

Even if we are not able to accomplish very much on a physical level,
at least we can have the desire
to be a loving person with a compassionate heart –
the wish to help others, spontaneously, with no reservations.

This attitude automatically opens our hearts and develops our compassion.

Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche
Gesture of Balance

TTMTSAU – FBOASB

All that we have in common with others

Once we recognize all that we have in common with others,
a feeling of compassion naturally arises
and we no longer treat other people with such indifference.

We welcome others warmly and joyfully into our hearts,
for we no longer feel defensive.

We easily see when others relate to us in this way –
their eyes are alive and their faces are radiant.

Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche
Gesture of Balance

Our inner sanctuary of the heart

We need to encourage our warm and positive feelings.

This warmth is not a superficial or sentimental  emotion
– the kind that leads to imbalance
and often creates ‘panic’ instead of calm.

It is a genuine openness which is felt
as a deep warmth in the center of the heart,
which is our inner sanctuary, our own home.

Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche
Gesture of Balance