Wisdom Publications released Realizing the Profound View, Volume 8 in The Library of Wisdom and Compassion series, in December. In this special multi-volume series, His Holiness the Dalai Lama shares the Buddha’s teachings on the complete path to full awakening that he himself has practiced his entire life.
Topics are arranged especially for people not born in a Buddhist culture and are punctuated with the Dalai Lama’s own unique outlook. Our abbess, Venerable Thubten Chodron, is the co-author and editor. She recently had the opportunity offer the most recent four volumes to His Holiness personally.
Realizing the Profound View is the second of three volumes devoted to emptiness and the wisdom that realizes the ultimate nature of reality. It challenges the ways we view the self and the world and brings us that much closer to liberation by guiding us in the analysis and meditations necessary to realize the ultimate nature of reality.
With attention to Nagarjuna’s five-point analysis, Candrakirti’s seven-point examination, and Pali sutras, the Dalai Lama leads us to investigate who or what is the person.
Are we our body? Our mind? If we are not inherently either of them, how do we exist, and what carries the karma from one life to the next?
As we explore these and other fascinating questions, he skillfully guides us along the path, avoiding the chasms of absolutism and nihilism, and introduces us to dependent arising.
For students of Buddhist philosophy, this book is a treasure to study, reflect, and meditate on for lifetimes.
Praise for the Realizing the Profound View
Excerpt: Dismantling False Views
Our self-centered thought limits us so much. It not only creates problems for ourselves and others here and now but also impedes our attainment of full awakening. As Panchen Lobsang Chogyen (1570–1662) says in Guru Pūjā:
This chronic disease of self-centeredness
is the cause of all unwanted suffering. . . .
Caring for my mother sentient beings and seeking to secure them in bliss is the gateway to infinite virtue.
Some of the scientists I (the Dalai Lama) have spoken with assert that our basic human nature is compassionate. Young children care little for differences among themselves and others; they are simply happy to play together. And young children are delighted to help their parents with certain tasks. It’s only as they grow older and begin their education that they learn to observe distinctions.
Modern education would do well to pay more attention to inner values, encouraging children to cultivate and enhance their natural sense of warm-heartedness. We are social animals, and our future and our happiness depend on those around us. Over-emphasizing secondary differences only leads to trouble. It is much better to remember that we are all the same in being living beings and to work together to fulfill the common good.
So let’s open our hearts and be aware of our common predicament as sentient beings in saṃsāra, and seek the highest awakening in order to liberate all beings.
Every day I dedicate my body, speech, and mind to the welfare of others, so I am happy to be of benefit by sharing with you my thoughts and those of the lineage of great Buddhist practitioners regarding dismantling false views and realizing the profound view.