In the Western world we are organizing retreats and teachings and everybody participates. There is an entry ticket and people should pay. The reason is that when you invite a teacher and you are organizing a place and everything, it is expensive and you need to have money, otherwise it cannot be done. But when we think a little of ancient times and how it started, there is a possibility that we can go in that same way. The teachings are for people who are interested, not only for people who have money. We know that and we should generously help other people to have the possibility to participate. For that reason I wrote an article (see https://melong.com/?p=1580) on how to go ahead and organize the teachings. After I wrote that article, we started not asking people to pay. But there are always people who invite the teacher and organize; this activity is called jindag (sbyin bdag).
Jin (sbyin) means offering and dag (bdag) means people who apply that action. So in this case it is necessary to have some people who participate. When I am asking that we do this, our Gakyil people become worried. Of course they are wondering how we can maintain everything because the Dzogchen Community does not have a bank. In this case we should somehow work with generosity. People should understand that. When you think, “Oh,we don’t need to pay for this retreat.” You don’t need to pay but you must think a little. The Dzogchen Community is participating and preparing everything. Where is the money of Dzogchen Community coming from? The Dzogchen Community needs to maintain many projects, etc. People who have a little money should remember this principle, and become either fully jindag or half jindag or small jindag, or very tiny jindag; you can be any of these.
You remember when we are learning the Six Paramitas in the Buddhist teachings, the first paramita is jinpa; offering and giving is very important for accumulating merits. Everybody needs merits. For that reason, at least when we are organizing a Ganapuja, you should remember that the Ganapuja is also for accumulating merits. You should offer something to create the possibility for your fortune and increasing these kinds of possibilities. It is much better to offer in a Ganapuja, for example, than to keep money and not spend it. You can have much more possibility for increasing wealth. Sometimes people think they have not much money for offering, this is our individual condition, but when we are explaining the paramita of the jinpa, it says gyamtso chuthig, which means if you have only a drop you are throwing in the water, until the ocean is dry still there is this continuation. Even if it is very small it does not matter, but you are presenting and you participate. This is very important.
So we are trying to learn a little about this possibility and go ahead. In this case everyone should have a little awareness of that, not only that I know that. Personally I do my best; I did and I still do that. I know that it is very important, also for having more money. Yesterday when we ate the divination soup I received lentils, which means money will come. You see we are here now, like gypsies in a tent. Dzamling Gar must not be that way. Slowly we will build a very nice Gonpa and finish all of Dzamling Gar in a perfect way corresponding perfectly to a real paradise; not only that we have the address of paradise [Playa Paraiso]. For that reason we need money to develop. When we are dancing, we are dancing Dzamling Gar. We say, “All Dzogchen Community unify and collaborate” and we do our best.
You should remember that. This is very important. Our life is very short but even if we have a short life, we try and do our best for the future generations. Ok, now you enjoy your food and drinks. Thank you very much.
Transcribed by Naomi Zeitz
Edited by Naomi Zeitz with the kind assistance of Adriano Clemente