Awakening Wisdom: Heart Advice on the Fundamental Practices of Vajrayana Buddhism (Paperback)

Awakening Wisdom: Heart Advice on the Fundamental Practices of Vajrayana Buddhism By Pema Wangyal, Padmakara Translation Group (Translated by) Cover Image

Awakening Wisdom: Heart Advice on the Fundamental Practices of Vajrayana Buddhism (Paperback)


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A clear, short, and delightful guide to practicing Vajrayana Buddhism, covering everything a beginner needs to know to get started, including instructions on the Vajrayana preliminary practices.

If you are new to Tibetan Buddhism, this short work will help you get started with your practice, and if you are well steeped in these teachings, it will remind you of the essentials points. Framed as a commentary on the Tersar Ngondro by Dudjom Rinpoche, Awakening Wisdom is geared toward connecting people with practice.
Part I covers motivation, posture and breathing, mantra practice, and the four reflections that turn the mind toward Buddhist practice. Part II covers mantras and  tonglen, the compassion practice that helps us connect to the suffering of others. Part III provides guidance about the preliminary practices themselves: the practice of the threefold refuge; generating the altruistic mind, or bodhichitta; purification practice; mandala offering; and Guru Yoga, explaining how each practice is the antidote to a particular cause of suffering, or “poison.” Part III also includes precious guidance about the Vajra Guru mantra and the transference of consciousness at the moment of death.
While these may seem like technical subjects—and this is indeed a traditional presentation—Pema Wangyal’s writing is suffused with warmth and tenderness, making this book quite accessible and inviting to beginners.
PEMA WANGYAL (b. 1945), the first son of Kangyur Rinpoche, is the main resident master of the three-year Nyingmapa retreats in Dordogne, France, director of the Association du Centre d’Etudes de Chanteloube, and founder of the Padmakara Translation Group. Under the guidance of Kyabje Kangyur Rinpoche, Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, Kyabje Dudjom Rinpoche, and other great masters of Tibetan Buddhism, Pema Wangyal Rinpoche has studied extensively, his learning confirmed by years of intensive practice. At the request of Dharma groups and institutions around the world, Rinpoche has been active as a teacher since 1975, giving public talks, leading seminars, and providing individual guidance. Since 1980, Rinpoche has personally supervised the traditional three-year retreat of intensive study and practice in Dordogne, France. In 1999, he inaugurated a series of retreats in parallel with the three-year retreat, thus enabling Buddhist practitioners with family responsibilities to engage in serious and sustained practice.
Product Details ISBN: 9781645471639
ISBN-10: 1645471632
Publisher: Shambhala
Publication Date: February 28th, 2023
Pages: 176
Language: English
“In this precious work of pure intention, Pema Wangyal Rinpoche touches deeply the fundamental practices of Vajrayana Buddhism as expressed in the well-known concise text by His Holiness Dudjom Rinpoche, The Preliminary Practice of the New Treasure (Dudjom Tersar Ngöndro). Speaking from his own profound personal experience as well as the ancient timeless teachings, he explains how to enter the direct path to enlightenment, which is available to anyone open to the joyous diligence of meditation practice. I am absolutely confident that whoever reads, understands, and contemplates the lessons of this book will have everything needed to journey the entire path laid out by the buddhas; their heirs, the bodhisattvas; and the great masters of perfect awareness.”—Orgyen Chowang Rinpoche, author of Our Pristine Mind

“Pema Wangyal Rinpoche grew up as the heart son of some of the greatest masters of the past century. He is also one of the most uncompromising and stubborn upholders of the Dharma. I can’t imagine him saying any word just for the sake of speaking. Every word comes from the depth of his heart. May all readers benefit by hearing them.”—Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche, author of Living Is Dying

“From his earliest years in Tibet, Pema Wangyal Rinpoche showed a keen interest in the Dharma and wished only to serve his father and teacher, Kangyur Rinpoche. As a young child, on the arduous flight into exile, he completed his first preliminary practices guided by Kangyur Rinpoche. Later in India, while studying at Varanasi University, where he was particularly active in helping other disadvantaged students, he spent his vacations serving Kangyur Rinpoche and helping his father’s first Western students make a connection. Subsequently he served and studied with other extraordinary masters—Dudjom Rinpoche, Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, Trulshik Rinpoche, Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche, Tenga Rinpoche, and more recently, Sakya Gongma Trichen Rinpoche and others—who transmitted to him the teachings that had come down to them in master-disciple lineages that had remained unbroken since Guru Padmasambhava introduced Buddhism to Tibet in the eighth century. He continues to work tirelessly to preserve the teachings and benefit beings and relieve their suffering, saving the lives of countless animals destined for slaughter. He has also devoted a large part of his life to patiently and tirelessly guiding practitioners in numerous traditional three-year retreats and continues to do so. The instructions in this book are not his own invention but the outcome of both a lifetime spent practicing these very instructions and a deeply felt wish to help others. Every word here is imbued with the wisdom that comes from listening, reflecting, and meditating.”—Jigme Khyentse

“I cannot but wholeheartedly recommend these concise yet essential instructions given by one of my most respected teachers, Pema Wangyal Rinpoche, whom I was greatly fortunate to meet in 1967 in the presence of his father, Kyapje Kangyur Rinpoche. These teachings are the very foundation of the whole spiritual path. As a great master Drigung Kyopa said, ‘Other teachings consider the main practice profound, but here it is the preliminary practices that we consider profound.’”—Matthieu Ricard, author of Enlightened Vagabond

“[A] concise, motivating introduction to Tibetan Buddhist practices.”—Publishers Weekly

“Impressively well-written, organized and thoroughly reader-friendly in presentation, Awakening Wisdom is exceptionally informative and highly recommended.”—Midwest Book Review