Friday, January 06, 2006

Eight Buddhist Principles for Relationship

The great Tibetan Buddhist teacher Geshe Langri Tangpa designed these teachings in the twelfth century, but they are still potent and helpful today as guides for human behavior, and for learning to relate to and love others unconditionally.

Because love is other-concerned, has no hierarchy, and does not cherish self-vindication, these teachings may be used as wise guides for intimate relating. You can read these eight simple teachings aloud as meditations, if you like:

May I consider all beings precious.

May I always respect others as superior while attaining self-esteem.

May I face my inner darkness and turn it to good.

May I be moved with compassion for the pain behind the spite others may show me.

When I am hurt by others, may I forego retaliation while always fighting injustice.

May I reckon those who betray me as sacred teachers.

May I offer joy to all beings and secretly take on their suffering.

May all beings and I be free from ego concerns of loss and gain.


Candle, breath,love, light, you, me/not me all are gathered here to practice these words.

PS: I think this could be written by Jesus or any other great teacher-- in fact Jesus said many of the same things in different ways.

This text is all quoted from an email I got today.

I have a few questions that don't really bear down on the humane message:

1. Have you ever heard of any Tibetan Monk From The Twelfth Century Who Was Not Great ? -- and most of the time we are talking Tony the Tiger Great!

2. If the author of the eight power points was black, was from say -- oh, the 21st Century and lived in poverty as monks are prone to do -- maybe was even in prison and borrowed the prison library's computer to make his presentation -- his proclamation of humanity -- well dammit, don't you think it would take another 12 centuries for his or her wisdom to get through to me?

Basta. I have to practice.


Adapted from How to Be an Adult in Relationships, by David Richo (Shambhala, 2002).

From the good people at Care2net

Photography by Laine Harris

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