Practicing Buddhism in a Pandemic – Geshe Tashi Tsering’s Coronavirus Update 11th April

Practicing Buddhism in a Pandemic – Geshe Tashi Tsering’s Coronavirus Update 11th April

In this extraordinary series, Geshe Tashi gives us regular updates on the Coronavirus Pandemic amongst the Tibetan diaspora in India through the lens of Sera Monastery, home to around 6,000 monks. In response to emails asking after his welfare and requesting advice on Coronavirus and Buddhist practice, he generously shares his observations, thoughts and advice in his usual warm-hearted and accessible style.

As a charity, it seems Sera Monastery has obligations towards the Indian government, which, unusually under any circumstances but particularly at this time, involves giving money rather than receiving it.  In this episode Geshe Tashi talks a little about this frustrating situation and how it is playing on his mind.

Geshe la then skilfully weaves this difficult situation into his theme for today’s Practicing in a Pandemic section, quoting St. Francis of Assisi on using charity and wisdom to overcome fear and ignorance.  He describes how fear comes from grasping, craving, and attachment, and gives guidance on how these underlying mental processes can be loosened by an understanding of impermanence, and by small acts of charity.

Drawing on Christian, Islamic and Buddhist sources, he offers a unified, integrated perspective around Nirvana, Liberation, Enlightenment and the Kingdom of Heaven.

This really is a very special teaching over a very special weekend for two of the world’s great religions, and we are delighted to be able to share it with you.  Please consider forwarding it to friends and family and to followers on social media, if you think it will be well received.

Happy Easter, Happy Passover, Happy Holidays to you all!

Your Admin Team

Khen Rinpoche Geshe Tashi Tsering taught in London for over 25 years and is currently Abbot of Sera Mey Monastery in Karnataka State, India.

This Post Has 12 Comments

  1. Jane Sill

    Dear Geshe la
    Many thanks! Very timely and practical advice. I really enjoyed the varied quotes – the Greek author is pronounced Eesop! Stranger lettering than English even. Do hope Indian bureaucracy not too exhausting. Am catching up. A lot must have happened in the intervening days. Thank you again and love to all, Jane

  2. Shelley

    So useful to be reminded of the connection between fear and attachment. Proper analysis can thus really help to free us from fear. Lovely quotes again too. I must watch this again to share with the family! Thank you Geshe la and I hope your charity there that you spoke of in the beginning is able to flow without hinderance to the right places.

  3. Owen Martin

    Took refuge with Geshe la in Australia 20 years ago

  4. m.

    Your talk on the Eleventh of April, is very special indeed.
    We are so fortunate to receive these talks and the opportunity to take them to heart.
    Despite your wide duties and responsibilities you always show such warmth, love and generosity caring for us.
    Thank you, for your persistent kindness,

    It gives such joy to hear you linking confirmation of love, compassion , impermanence and interdependence, from so many different sources , all converging into a single indivisible selfless expression of wisdom and compassion from within.
    You share universal truths and inspire confidence clearly showing how we really can be, how we can turn our minds to allow wisdom, love and compassion throughout our lives whatever the circumstances.
    Thereby using what initially appears to be strongly negative, can become a great learning source.
    Learning and expressing the power of our inner potential, that’s surely the main point of how to be human ?

    (Well in UK , thats best on a good sunny day !)

  5. Birgit

    Dear Geshe Tashi, thank you so much for your time and your words. With your words you answer many of my questions and I am very grateful for that, it makes my live easier and richer.

  6. Genevieve

    Thanks once more for making available this unique wisdom with great care and inspiration. Again a day started for me with encouragement and more clarity through Geshe Tashi‘s update and insights. I felt inspired to carry along with me throughout this day – besides the intention set in the morning – a little quote from a children‘s book I received a couple of days ago (age 8-88) from the author Charlie Mackesy. Little stories about a curious little boy and his friends (The Boy, the mole, the fox and the horse). E.g.: „When the big things feel out of control…………………focus on what you love right under your nose.“ Here the accompanying illustration is a big dense forrest with a very small little boy on his horse friend. Thank you and big thanks too to the Admin Team for their wonderfully helpful abstracts at the beginning of the updates.

    1. admin

      Thank you for your kind comments, Genevieve, we feel very lucky to be able to help in this way. Your book about the boy and his friends sounds lovely, just the kind of thing we enjoy. (Every now and again we dip into the Moomin books!)

  7. Brenda

    Dear Geshe La, as Ruth said above, your inspiring ‘blah blah’ was a perfect start to a rather different sort of Easter Day!
    I empathise with your concerns about whether the donation to national funds will be spent wisely, well and with equanimity. Very difficult. It would seem like your preferred approach of a more local, practical, direct community response may be be more effective.
    I love the quotes you gave especially the advice for the pilgrim of love. You draw on many different spiritual sources but their messages are strikingly similar. How wonderful it would be if everyone could put aside their religious and racial divisions!
    Thankyou again for making this time for us. May you and everyone in your care be safe and well.
    Love brenda

  8. Sue Aldam

    Thank you for again giving us a wonderful and timely teaching. I always have problems around charity…I can give, and I think with good motivation, but later the feeling that I could have given more. Then the thought comes that it will have good karmic results for me which I try also to give away. But there always seems to be some self interest involved and this attachment is very difficult to get rid of. So this teaching was particularly valuable for me. Thank you, thank you.
    May you all keep well Geshe-la. Love Sue.

  9. Shirley

    Tashi delek
    Thank you once again, for taking time to give this valuable teaching. Sometimes, life’s problems, fears and worries just “run away with us”. It is good to be “grounded” again with your valuable teachings.


  10. Ruth

    Thank you dear Geshe-la for so effectively being with us all. Vividly to the point as ever, amazingly even while having to deal with huge huge issues. And, like Ian, I also enjoyed the birdsong in union with the uplifting comfort of what you insist on calling bla-bla! Many prayers/reflections as you say, quietly on through the day. But in the meantime, this is a great way to start this particular one. Happy Easter.

  11. Ian

    A really insightful chat. I’ve always found your words to be of comfort and easily understood to take away and contemplate. At a time where social media bombards the mind, the time here is precious. The accompanying bird song from where you are is also a wonderful ambient sound while you talk. Take care, Geshe La, and thank you. Ian.

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