How Karma Works: the twelve links of dependent-arising
We all want to find happiness and be free from suffering. Happiness comes from positive mental states and actions, and suffering from the opposite. The twelve-part process of dependent arising shows how actions underlain by ignorance propel us from one rebirth into another, keeping us trapped in suffering, and how through understanding reality correctly we can break this cycle. The four noble truths, the twelve links of dependent arising, and the two truths regarding conventional and ultimate reality, all interrelated, form the very core of the Buddha's teaching. The many different practices of sutra and tantra become meaningful and purposeful only when they are based on a good understanding of these fundamental and seminal principles.
This oral teaching by Geshe Sonam Rinchen is based on the Rice Seedling Sutra and the twenty-sixth chapter of Nagarjuna's Treatise on the Middle Way.
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Geshe Sonam Rinchen was born in Tibet in 1933. He studied at Sera Je Monastery and in 1980 received the Lharampa Geshe degree. He is currently resident scholar at the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives in Dharamsala, India, where he teaches Buddhist philosophy and practice.
Ruth Sonam was born and grew up in Ireland and graduated from Oxford University with an M.A. in Modern Languages. She began studying with Geshe Sonam Rinchen in 1978 and has worked as his interpreter since 1983. Among their many works are Atisha's Lamp for the Path to Enlightenment; The Thirty-seven Practices of Bodhisattvas; The Three Principal Aspects of the Path; The Six Perfections, The Bodhisattva Vow; Eight Verses for Training the Mind; and The Heart Sutra.