The Six Fondnesses

A teaching from Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche at Bangalow in Australia in 2012. Excerpt from Gentle Voice: Online Newsletter of Siddharthas Intent.

“For the path dweller to be virtuous and to accumulate virtuous deeds is so important. To think virtuously is very important. However good deeds have so many obstacles. These obstacles can be categorised into the six fondnesses.”

“What are they – it is quite interesting – they are the six different kinds of love.”
Rinpoche invites a definition. “What is love by the way?” (Audience laughter)

Audience responds with some words.

“Tenderness, yes tenderness. That is good. Tenderness I think I like. A soft spot. A Fondness.”

1. “ There is a certain type of rat that is always collecting things – a pack rat. This kind of attitude, a tenderness towards, a fondness for collecting attacks generosity, the first paramita.”

2. “ The next is a tenderness, a fondness towards not staying out of trouble. A very good one, this, I thought. A fondness to trouble.”

Mischievous? (Audience)

“Mischievous is something kind of good. No? Well according to us it is,” ( Rinpoche and audience laughter) “ This fondness of not staying out of trouble becomes the obstacle to discipline.”

3. “The fondness to making the point is the obstacle to patience”

4. “ Fondness to carelessness is the obstacle to diligence Sloppiness. Yes. Sloppiness is good. Messiness. A fondness to Australians. No, No, No I am just…”

5. “ A fondness to be dependent, to be co-dependent. We have a fondness for wanting space, for respecting human rights but that’s all talk. Behind our actions we have a fondness to be dictated to, to be controlled by others. Fondness to be dominated by an object. A bit like having a girlfriend or a boyfriend. To have someone who can change their mood faster than lightning. That’s terrible,”

(Lots of laughter)

“Basically we love dependency even though we talk about independence. This is the obstacle to meditation – samadhi.“

6. “Now this is a really good one. Fantastic this one. You know how the French – I hope there are no French people here – love smelly cheese. We love disgusting stuff like pig’s nose. There is tenderness, a fondness for liking bad stuff, or for liking cheap stuff, so that is why we need wisdom.”

“These things, these six fondnesses are the mastermind, the planner, the mover, the fixer of non virtuous deeds. They lead to non-virtuous action. They sustain, they enhance, the non-virtuous action. The six paramitas are there because these fondnesses need to be analysed and attacked.”

–Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

The Wheel of Formlessness

“Slowly, slowly, the weight shifts. Then the weight shifts just enough so that there is a slight predominance on the center of the wheel, and we find that we naturally just want to sit down and be quiet, that we don’t have to say, ‘I’ve got to meditate now,’ or ‘I’ve got to read a holy book,’ or ‘I’ve got to turn off the television set,’ or ‘I’ve got to do…’ anything.”

–Ram Dass

It’s Hard to Let Go of Wishing and Wanting, Yearning and Craving

“Our lives can be in turmoil, the world can be crumbling, people are against us, the bombs are going off, but we can still recognise ordinary mind transcending it all. In fact, when one’s back is pressed against the wall, that might be the moment one switches one’s perspective and sees the world as a mirror image, a mirage, a vision—true but not true.”

— Diana St Ruth

The Important Thing

“Defending an idea or a position is not important. Justifying or explaining the way things are is not important. Feeling more or feeling less is not important. The movement of the mind to an imagined past or an imagined future and the feelings we feel when we follow the mind’s wanderings are not important. All of the reasons we can only be a little of who we are, and all of the ways we try to prove them to be true, are not important.

The important thing is to be awake now, to feel the transparency, to feel the universal shining through the individual, and then to allow life to express itself though us.”

–Rolf Gates

Walk The Path

“That there is a path to the end of suffering, to freedom, is the Fourth Noble Truth. We walk the Path as our life practice—to cultivate and develop WISDOM, live in INTEGRITY with Wise Speech, Wise Action (harmlessness) and Wise Livelihood and in MEDITATION (cultivating continuous wise presence in all activity, feeling directly the body and breath, knowing intimately our emotions and thought process). The Noble Eightfold Path is a Middle Path, a path of balance.”

–Gina Sharpe