Don’t Complain!

Posted on November 25, 2009


Don’t Complain!

by H.E. Tsem Tulku Rinpoche

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I am a great complainer because I am well-praktised in it!?

Brrrreeak it down, Rinpoche.

If I’m good at something, that’s because I’ve praktised; that’s why I’m good at it!  And I can be just as praktised in something else too!  Just let it go and choose something more wholesome.

“Don’t Complain” isn’t a long talk, but it’s got some sharp points for me to hear.  One of my main things I got from listening is checking my motivation for entering and pursuing the dharmic path.  And whatever complaints, doubts or ill-thoughts my mind entertains, I must check to see what effects these thoughts and actions are having on me, my praktis (or non-praktis) and generally, my quality of life.

There was a time when I felt a “strong fear” actually to dharma praktis.  I felt drawn to it, but a deep sense of fear repelled me, limited me, had me pushing back and digging my heels.   I can recall that moment still, just a few years back, and still quite fresh in my mind as the time of “dangerous praktis.”

I felt a “dangerousness” to praktising.  It did not stop me from exploring and getting my feet wet, but I “conditioned” my participation, still playing the game to stay in control.   I even joked about it and would laugh at my rationalization, “dangerous praktis” I would quip!

In a subtle, or perhaps not-so-subtle way, this was in fact a “complaint”, or hesitation I was expressing.  I didn’t know what to do with the feeling I might’ve been intuiting that in fact there is a point where I “lose” control of holding on to the moment where I still retain control.  Ego.  Calling things “dangerous praktis” was my way of making light of this, making noise about how “dangerous” it would be for me to continue praktising in this way.  And dangerous indeed.  Dangerous for my sense of self, my self-cherishing mind that continues to manifest the conditions that led to its continued perpetuation.  I knew to name the “edge” where things got dangerous and to half-jokingly, but really seriously, “STAY AWAY FROM DANGEROUS PRAKTIS!”  It was my way of cautioning myself that to go any further would be to RISK MORE & to experience the real danger of my ego-self being en-dangered.

Today, I can ask myself what purpose did that serve?  And what purpose did it serve for those who had the misfortune to hear my selfishness and self-protection.  What message was I communicating about the INeffectiveness of Dharma, distorting its truth and effect by naming it DANGEROUS.

I only hope I kept my mouth shut more often than not, keeping the idea of dharma’s “dangerousness” to myself.

Yes, I still still consider dharma praktis, a dangerous praktis.

And hopefully, when I check though, I can see how differently-located my motivation is when I state this.

And in making all this noise still, it isn’t directed at justifying my actions or in-actions to those around me.  In contrast, it is to announce to my small self that this path of praktis is about to create the causes & conditions to bring about the destruction of self-cherishing mind.

May I continue to walk in the direction away from fear,  in the direction of dangerous praktis, to experience Dharma’s true potential in my life.

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In my week long break during Thanksgiving, wanting to listen to online dharma talks and post a bit about them, one each day during this week.  May I be consistent with this aspiration!

A dharma talk a day keeps my unwholesome habits at bay!

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