Acho Rinpoche gave a key teaching after the group prayer tonight on “letting go”. What should we let go? How do we let go? Only when one has understood the meaning of “letting go” and put the teaching to practice in his daily life, will he be able to attain the true liberation free of sufferings.
Acho Rinpoche shared the teaching of Venerable Jin Kong as follow.
Even an ordained person might not be able to truly “let go”, let alone a layman Buddhist who is preoccupied by worldly concerns like his works, his family etc. Sakyamuni Buddha said that a layman Buddhist may attain Buddhahood too. Vimalakirti, a layman Buddhist during the time of Sakyamuni Buddha, attained the same level of enlightenment as Bodhisattva Manjushri, who was an ordained person. In one of the sutras (阿难问事佛吉祥经), Buddha advised his students that “A Buddhist may do the worldly activities but he should not feel attached to them.” It means that a Buddhist may live a layman life including getting married, having children, working etc.; however, he should not harbor the thoughts of wanting to take control of them and own them permanently.”
People tend to assume that this world is real and permanent, and reject what they dislike and feel attached to what they like. They wish to own, monopolize and control what appear to be pleasant to them. However, all the phenomena in this world are transient in nature and appear only in the form of composite existence due to our karma; they will change over time and finally disappear completely. People tend to feel anguished when they lose someone or something they love - it is actually our sense of attachment to the worldly phenomena that creates the feeling of pain in us. In fact, we may enjoy the things presented to us at the juncture they appear, but we will need to learn to let them go when they disappear before us. Let them go, and we will then liberate ourselves from the feeling of pain of not wanting to let go.
Acho Rinpoche advised us that we may fall in love wholeheartedly with someone but we must let our lover go when the karmic connection between us has ended. There is nothing permanent in this world including our husband, wife, children, colleagues etc. If we insist on wanting others to follow exactly what we want them to do, that is the root cause of our own suffering. We need to let go of the notions of “I”, “me”, “mine” including our own physical body, and treat them like a hotel which we will only be using for a short while and leave them behind after that. Do not harbor the thought of wanting to take possession of someone or something, let alone wanting to “control” them. This is the key to attaining the ultimate liberation from all sufferings in life.
By “letting go”, it does not mean ignoring all things in life but to simply let go of our inner desire of wanting to own, monopolize and control the people and things in our life. It is the wrong ideas that fabricate the feeling of pain in our mind. We can certainly enjoy the things presented to us at present but do not fall prey to the thoughts of wanting to own, monopolize and control them perpetually. When it is time for them to disappear before us, learn to say “goodbye” to them. Apply this key teaching in our daily life, be it at home, at work or when dealing with our family etc., and we will gradually liberate ourselves from the sufferings in life.
Reported by Sun-Moon KFS on 17-9-2016