looking for Atisha reference

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looking for Atisha reference

Postby anjali » Fri Jun 28, 2013 11:27 pm

Greetings,

The following is attributed to Atisha (and I believe it), but, after doing a lot of net searching, I can't found out where it comes from. I don't have access to his collected works to do the search myself. Help appreciated!

The greatest achievement is selflessness.
The greatest worth is self-mastery.
The greatest quality is seeking to serve others.
The greatest precept is continual awareness.
The greatest medicine is the emptiness of everything.
The greatest action is not conforming with the worlds ways.
The greatest magic is transmuting the passions.
The greatest generosity is non-attachment.
The greatest goodness is a peaceful mind.
The greatest patience is humility.
The greatest effort is not concerned with results.
The greatest meditation is a mind that lets go.
The greatest wisdom is seeing through appearances.
  • The object of the game is to go on playing it. --John Von Neumann
  • All activities are like the games children play. If started, they can never be finished. They are only completed once you let them be, like castles made of sand. --Khenpo Nyoshul Rinpoche
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Re: looking for Atisha reference

Postby Will » Fri Jun 28, 2013 11:58 pm

Geshe Wangyal's Door of Liberation (1973 ed.) quotes it on page 122, but with a different translation. The noble Geshe gives the source as Kadamthorbu, Precepts collected from Here and There. Tsun-ba-je-gom collected them.
One should refrain from biased judgments and doubting in fathoming the Buddha and the Dharma of the Buddhas. Even though a dharma may be extremely difficult to believe, one should nonetheless maintain faith in it. Nagarjuna
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Re: looking for Atisha reference

Postby anjali » Sat Jun 29, 2013 12:25 am

Will wrote:Geshe Wangyal's Door of Liberation (1973 ed.) quotes it on page 122, but with a different translation. The noble Geshe gives the source as Kadamthorbu, Precepts collected from Here and There. Tsun-ba-je-gom collected them.

Will, thanks for the source! Found the alternative translation online...
Last edited by anjali on Sat Jun 29, 2013 12:38 am, edited 1 time in total.
  • The object of the game is to go on playing it. --John Von Neumann
  • All activities are like the games children play. If started, they can never be finished. They are only completed once you let them be, like castles made of sand. --Khenpo Nyoshul Rinpoche
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Re: looking for Atisha reference

Postby Will » Sat Jun 29, 2013 12:33 am

At another time Atisha was asked by Ku, Ngok, and Drom, "What is the highest teaching of the path?"

Atisha replied, "The highest skill is in the realization of egolessness. The highest nobility is in subduing your own mind. The highest excellence is in having a mind which seeks to help others. The highest precept is continual mindfulness. The highest remedy is in understanding the naturelessness of everything. The highest activity is not to conform with worldly concerns. The highest siddhi is the lessening and transmutation of the passions. The highest giving is found in non-attachment. The highest moral practice is a peaceful mind. The highest patience is humility. The highest effort is to abandon attachment to activities. The highest meditation is the mind without pretension. The highest wisdom is not to grasp anything as it appears."
One should refrain from biased judgments and doubting in fathoming the Buddha and the Dharma of the Buddhas. Even though a dharma may be extremely difficult to believe, one should nonetheless maintain faith in it. Nagarjuna
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Re: looking for Atisha reference

Postby anjali » Sat Jun 29, 2013 12:45 am

Will wrote:
At another time Atisha was asked by Ku, Ngok, and Drom, "What is the highest teaching of the path?"

Atisha replied, "The highest skill is in the realization of egolessness. The highest nobility is in subduing your own mind. The highest excellence is in having a mind which seeks to help others. The highest precept is continual mindfulness. The highest remedy is in understanding the naturelessness of everything. The highest activity is not to conform with worldly concerns. The highest siddhi is the lessening and transmutation of the passions. The highest giving is found in non-attachment. The highest moral practice is a peaceful mind. The highest patience is humility. The highest effort is to abandon attachment to activities. The highest meditation is the mind without pretension. The highest wisdom is not to grasp anything as it appears."


It's nice to be able to look at the alternative translations. The one I originally posted, which is widely quoted, was the only version I could find.
  • The object of the game is to go on playing it. --John Von Neumann
  • All activities are like the games children play. If started, they can never be finished. They are only completed once you let them be, like castles made of sand. --Khenpo Nyoshul Rinpoche
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Re: looking for Atisha reference

Postby Will » Sat Jun 29, 2013 1:38 am

anjali,

Starting around page 30 of this teaching is a commentary on these verses of Atisha:

http://www.fpmtabc.org/download/ebook/k ... chings.pdf

This may be the entire chapter that contained the Atisha verses:

http://www.bps.lk/olib/bl/bl116.pdf
One should refrain from biased judgments and doubting in fathoming the Buddha and the Dharma of the Buddhas. Even though a dharma may be extremely difficult to believe, one should nonetheless maintain faith in it. Nagarjuna
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Re: looking for Atisha reference

Postby Nilasarasvati » Sat Jun 29, 2013 1:58 am

:anjali:
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Re: looking for Atisha reference

Postby anjali » Sat Jun 29, 2013 4:12 pm

Will, thanks for the links. Putting together the three available online translations, I get this. One source has 7 more verses than the other two. On the whole, they seem to agree reasonably well, but with some differences. Does anyone know where I might find an academically authoritative translation of the dialog between Dromtonpa and Atisha that these verses come from?

1. The greatest achievement is selflessness.
The highest skill is in the realization of egolessness.
The most supreme part [of Dharma practice] is the realization of selflessness.

2. The greatest worth is self-mastery.
The highest nobility is in subduing your own mind.
The supreme of all efforts is to subdue one’s mind.

3. The greatest quality is seeking to serve others.
The highest excellence is in having a mind which seeks to help others.
The supreme of all the qualities is to benefit others.

4. The greatest precept is continual awareness.
The highest precept is continual mindfulness.
The supreme precept is to constantly watch our mind.

5. The greatest medicine is the emptiness of everything.
The highest remedy is in understanding the naturelessness of everything.
The supreme antidote is the realization of the lack of inherent existence.

6. The greatest action is not conforming with the world's ways.
The highest activity is not to conform with worldly concerns.
The supreme behavior is to go against all worldly conducts.

7. The greatest magic is transmuting the passions.
The highest accomplishment is the lessening and transmutation of the passions.
The supreme attainment is the reduction of the delusions.

8. The greatest generosity is non-attachment.
The highest giving is found in non-attachment.
The supreme of the generosities is non-attachment.

9. The greatest goodness is a peaceful mind.
The highest moral practice is a peaceful mind.
The supreme morality is to calm one's mind.

10. The greatest patience is humility.
The highest patience is humility.
The supreme patience is to regard oneself as very low.

11. The greatest effort is not concerned with results.
The highest effort is to abandon attachment to activities.
The supreme effort is to give up the activities of this life.

12. The greatest meditation is a mind that lets go.
The highest meditation is the mind without pretension.
The supreme meditation is on non-pretension.

13. The greatest wisdom is seeing through appearances.
The highest wisdom is not to grasp anything as it appears.
The supreme wisdom is not grasping or clinging to the "I" and the mind.

14. The supreme master is someone who points out your faults and then tells you to avoid them.

15. The supreme precept is the instruction that shows and expresses all your faults.

16. The supreme friend is mindfulness and introspection.

17. The supreme inducement is for us to engage in virtue or Dharma practice.

18. The most skillful of means is to stop quarreling.

19. The supreme benefit is to inspire others to engage in Dharma practice.

20. The supreme benefit for oneself is to guide or direct one's mind to the spiritual practices.
  • The object of the game is to go on playing it. --John Von Neumann
  • All activities are like the games children play. If started, they can never be finished. They are only completed once you let them be, like castles made of sand. --Khenpo Nyoshul Rinpoche
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Re: looking for Atisha reference

Postby Tom Watson » Thu Aug 22, 2013 2:39 am

The following is from:

The Book of Kadam
The Core Texts
Attributed to Atisa and Dromtönpa
Translated by Thupten Jinpa
Wisdom Publications 2008 Boston

Page 560 :

XI. Sayings of the Kadam Masters
Compiled by Chegom Sherap Dorje (ca. twelfth century)


Again, Khuton, Ngok, and Dromtonpa asked Atisa, "Of all the teachings of the path, which is the best?"

The master replied:

The best learning is realizing the truth of no-self.
The best discipline is taming your mindstream.
The best excellence is to have great altruism.
The best instruction is the constant observation of your mind.
The best antidote is the recognition that everything is devoid of intrinsic existence.
The best conduct is being at variance with the mundane world.
The best higher attainment is the lessening of your mental afflictions.
The best sign of higher attainment is a decrease in your attachment.
The best giving is the absence of possessiveness.
The best morality is a tranquil mind.
The best forbearance is to uphold humility.
The best joyful perseverance is to be able to let go of the endeavor.
The best concentration is the uncontrived mind.
The best wisdom is to make no identification of "I am" with any thing.
The best spiritual teacher is to challenge your weaknesses.
The best instruction is to strike at your very own shortcomings.
The best friends are mindfulness and introspective awareness.
The best motivating factors are your enemies, obstacles, illnesses, and sufferings.
The best skillful means is to be free of apprehensions.
The best beneficial deed is to help [someone] enter the Dharma.
The best help given is to turn [someone's] thoughts to the Dharma.


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Re: looking for Atisha reference

Postby anjali » Thu Aug 22, 2013 3:46 pm

Hi Tom,

Thank you for your post!

:anjali:
  • The object of the game is to go on playing it. --John Von Neumann
  • All activities are like the games children play. If started, they can never be finished. They are only completed once you let them be, like castles made of sand. --Khenpo Nyoshul Rinpoche
anjali
 
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Re: looking for Atisha reference

Postby Jinzang » Fri Aug 23, 2013 1:36 am

Here is my admittedly poor translation of Atisha, taken from Lama Phurbu Tashi's notebook.

jo bo'i zhal nas
mkhas pa'i mchog bdag med kyi don rtogs
pa yin / btsun pa'i mchog sems rgyud dul wa yin /
yon tan gyi mchog phan sems che ba yin / gdams
ngag gi mchog rtag tu rang sems la lta ba yin / gnyen
po'i mchog gamg yang rang bzhin med par shes pa yin /
sbyod pa'i mchog 'jig rten dang mi mthun pa yin
dngos grub kyi mchog nyon mongs pa je chung la song ba
yin / sbyin pa'i mchog ma chags pa yin / tshul
khrims kyi mchog sems zhi ba yin / bzod pa'i mchog
dman sa bzung ba yin / bsam gtan gyi mchog blo ma bcos pa
yin / shes rab kyi mchog gang la yang der 'tsin med
pa yin gsung /

Jowo Rinpoche said,
"The best intellectual understanding is to comprehend the meaning of selflessness. The best monastic is one who disciplines his mind. The best enlightened quality is the great wish to benefit others. The best spiritual instruction is to continually hold the view before one's mind. The best activity is not to be in agreement with the world. The best accomplishment is not to fall into the afflictive emotions. The best generosity is non-attachment. The best ethics is a peaceful mind. The best patience is to be humble. The best exertion is to let go of activity. The best meditation is no mind. The best wisdom is not to fixate on anything."
Lamrim, lojong, and mahamudra are the unmistaken path.
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