Please take a few moments before you begin this teaching to settle yourself. Sit upright, yet naturally relaxed. Before listening to and/ or reading the teaching make aspirations such as: "I am extremely fortunate to have the opportunity to listen to the precious Dharma. I am doing this for the benefit of all sentient beings so that they may be free from suffering and attain complete awakening".
Advice on practice language is a frequent question from Tibetan Buddhist practitioners throughout the world. How should we practice our chants? What language do I use? Is it more important to understand the meaning or to have faith in the blessings of the Tibetan texts? This question arises frequently in teaching situations. We know that it is easier to memorize when chants are done to a tune, but if we don’t know the meaning is there any benefit?
Here, we present Phakchok Rinpoche’s recent short video answer given to this question. Rinpoche explains that his answer relates to the Vajrayana tradition.
Practice Language: Practice Needs to Resonate For You
Please keep in mind that this is a general answer. Rinpoche might give you individual advice that is different! as beginners, we may want to alternate back and forth between languages. Initially, we may spend more time studying the practice in our own language. Then, as we gain familiarity, we may gradually practice the text in the Tibetan language. Many practitioners do alternate languages to keep the meaning fresh in their minds.
In our on-line course presentations we aim to offer videos of practices chanted in both Tibetan and in English. We hope to expand this to other languages as well.
At the end of the teaching, please remember to dedicate the merit of receiving a Dharma teaching. As you go through your day, take a few moments from time to time to recall these instructions.