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Aspiration: Main Outline Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8 Week 9


The King of Aspiration Prayers: Review of Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche’s teachings on Samantabhadra’s King of Aspiration Prayers (from 2016 to 2024), a 9-week online seminar series. You can ask questions and share reflections in the Forum. For additional information, including downloadable copies of the text of the King of Aspiration Prayers, please see the program Main Page.


Week 1: Introduction
Date
: March 16, 2024 (60 minutes)
Topics: Welcome, program overview, introduction to key concepts, practical information, and guided aspiration practice following the King of Aspiration Prayers.
Reference: n/a

Video / Transcript: 🇬🇧 English  🇨🇳 简体字

Week 2: Benefits — The Journey Begins: Awakening to Potential
Date
: March 23, 2024 (67 minutes)
Topics: The benefits of reciting and reflecting upon the King of Aspiration Prayers, including the accumulation of merit, avoidance of lower rebirths, and the attainment of Buddhahood.
Reference: Samantabhadra’s King of Aspiration Prayers verses 47 – 54

Video / Transcript: 🇬🇧 English 

Week 3: Foundation — Laying Foundations: The Seven Branch Offering
Date
: March 30, 2024 (75 minutes)
Topics: Introducing the Seven Branches of Enlightenment as preliminary practices that purify the mind and prepare it for deeper insight.
Reference: Samantabhadra’s King of Aspiration Prayers verses 1 – 12

Video / Transcript: 🇬🇧 English

Week 4: Compassion — The Heart of the Path: Awakening Compassion and Wisdom
Date
: April 6, 2024 (61 minutes)
Topics: Beginning the Actual Aspiration and exploring the first four aspirations of purity, never forgetting bodhichitta, being free from defilements, and leading beings to happiness. Reviewing the foundations of the bodhisattva path: compassion & wisdom; relative & ultimate bodhichitta; ground, path and fruit; and an overview of the paths and bhumis.
Reference: Samantabhadra’s King of Aspiration Prayers verses 13 – 21

Video / Transcript: 🇬🇧 English

Week 5: Perseverance — Steadfast Commitment: The Bodhisattva’s Way
Date
: April 13, 2024
Topics: The next six aspirations: wearing the armour of dedication, accompanying other bodhisattvas, pleasing virtuous teachers, seeing and serving the Buddhas, keeping the Dharma thriving, and acquiring inexhaustible treasure. This concludes the first part of the prayer, which is about the aspiration on the stage of “aspiring conduct” for bodhisattvas who are still ordinary beings.
Reference: Samantabhadra’s King of Aspiration Prayers verses 22 – 27

Video & Transcript forthcoming

Week 6: Insight — Beyond Duality: Embracing Nondual Awareness
Date
: April 20, 2024
Topics: Delving into the understanding, aspiration, practice and realisation of bodhisattvas on the first bhumi, including seeing all the Buddhas and their pure realms, seeing all the Buddhas in one instant, and entering their Pure Lands. With the realisation of emptiness/shunyata, we go beyond conventional rationality into a realm that cannot be captured by ordinary concepts and language.
Reference: Samantabhadra’s King of Aspiration Prayers verses 28 – 35

Video & Transcript forthcoming

Week 7: Vastness — Vast Aspiration: The Bodhisattva’s Infinite Activity
Date
: April 27, 2024
Topics: Aspiring to emulate the vast and inconceivable aspirations and ocean-like actions of the bodhisattvas on the bhumis, such as benefiting all beings across time and space, and acquiring inexhaustible treasures of merit and wisdom.
Reference: Samantabhadra’s King of Aspiration Prayers verses 36 – 46

Video & Transcript forthcoming

Week 8: Dedication — Dedicating the Merit: A Gesture of Universal Love
Date
: May 4, 2024
Topics: Dedicating the merit of our aspiration and practice towards achieving Buddhahood for the benefit of all beings and making specific aspirations towards rebirth in Amitabha’s pure land. Here we reflect on how we can follow the example of the buddhas and bodhisattvas like Samantabhadra and Mañjushri and dedicate our practice to selflessly manifest compassion and wisdom in our own lives.
Reference: Samantabhadra’s King of Aspiration Prayers verses 55 – 63

Video & Transcript forthcoming

Week 9: Continuity — Beyond the Program: Continuing the Enlightened Journey
Date
: May 11, 2024
Topics: Reflecting on the entire aspiration prayer, with a focus on implementing the insights and commitments in daily life as an ongoing journey of personal growth and spiritual transformation.
Reference: n/a

Video & Transcript forthcoming


Artwork by Alex Li Trisoglio/GPT, 2024.