Heartfelt Advice to Rechungpa

Bhante came across an abridged edition of Evans-Wentz’s translation of “Tibet’s Great Yogi Milarepa” in a library in Singapore when he was 20 years old.  “As I read it my hair stood on end and tears came into my eyes. If I had any doubts about the nature of my vocation, they were now dispelled, and from that time onwards I lived only for the day when I would be free to follow to its end the path that, as it seemed, had been in reality mine from the beginning.”

Many years later, in the later 1970s, Sangharakshita devoted a significant number of seminars to the inspired stories found in the 100,000 Songs of Milarepa.  For Bhante, the teachings of Tibet’s great yogi were not only “direct and relevant” but embodied that essential “element of poetry and human interest’.  These profound teachings embody the sublime and poetic illumination of an awakened mind. 

The collection of songs and stories which makes up the ‘Heartfelt advice to Rechungpa’ illustrate, in particular, the nature of the relationship of teacher and disciple.  As Bhante says ‘the guru is the person with personal experience who helps you to understand the written words of the teaching, which is very difficult for you to do by yourself”.   Bhante’s view that it is authentic communication at the heart of discipleship that helps us cut through many of the misunderstandings that constellate around that term.  In Milarepa’s ‘son-disciple’, Rechungpa, we recognize many of the mistaken views and delusions that may hinder the practice of the spiritual life, delusions that are dispelled by Milarepa’s uncompromising yet compassionate teachings.  

We will be using the 1962 translation of the 100,000 songs of Milarepa by Garma C C Chang (the only English translation available when the seminars were held) as well as the more recent translation by Christopher Stagg.  We will also be drawing on Bhante’s commentary on “Heartfelt Advice to Rechungpa” from the Complete Works “The Art of Discipleship II”.

Heartfelt Advice to Rechungpa

Led by Maitreyi and Paramartha

Reception is from 4pm on the day of arrival, with the retreat beginning with supper at 6pm.

The retreat will finish in the morning after the clear-up. If traveling on public transport, please book a train after 11am.

This retreat is for members of the Triratna Buddhist Order

Start Date: 8th Jul 2022
End Date: 15th Jul 2022
Event Type: Residential
Deposit: £70
Price: £270 (Waged/Supported (including deposit)) / £195 (Unwaged/Unsupported (including deposit))

Dana/Bursary Donation
An opportunity to give if you are attending a dana event. For paid events, an invitation to contribute to our bursary fund.

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