BA4_21-27 The Sufferings of Samsara & The Need to Seize the Opportunity


With video BA4_21-27 Rinpoche gives a commentary on stanzas 21-27 of the fourth chapter of the Bodhicharyavatara. Here we are reflecting on the necessity of carefulness from the point of view of how difficult it is to free ourselves from the lower realms and how we should not waste this great opportunity we now have.

To view the video, simply click on the image to view all the Chapter 4 videos.

If you prefer listening to the teaching in audio, use the audio player below.

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The audio as well as the audio translations in different languages and the transcript of this teaching are all available on Chapter 4 page.

We are also studying the commentary transcript on Chapter 4, which you can download here and in the Library section. Further recommended reading: the commentary book by Kunzang Pelden (Khenpo Kunpal), The Nectar of Manjushri’s Speech, p. 151-155.

You’re questions are most welcome. Please log in and leave your questions for Rinpoche as a comment below, or send them via email to studyquestions[at] It is helpful if you can use one short paragraph and, if possible, less than 80 words. Any questions longer than that may have to be edited so please be concise. Questions will be collected from here on December 11, 2011, and included in Rinpoche’s answers video. After that date please send any questions relating to this video teaching via email to studyquestions[at]

If you would like to volunteer in making transcripts of Rinpoche’s online teachings, or in making audio translations to your own language, please email us at shedra[at]

2 thoughts on “BA4_21-27 The Sufferings of Samsara & The Need to Seize the Opportunity

  1. Lynda

    dear Rinpoche, thank you for these teachings. It is obviously important to keep this sense of needing to seize the opportunity to make use of the teachings in the front of our minds. Would a good way to do this be to meditate upon our own death every day, as thinking about death certainly highlights the absolute necessity of practicing the dharma? If this is a good idea, what would be the best way to do this? Is there a practice that helps one to realise the precious opportunity of having a human life that will end in death?
    warmest regards, Lynda

  2. Dave

    I am having trouble with Chapter4 and I think that”I” have missed something quite fundamental.
    In verses 21-27there is a lot of the use of “I”- eg verse 21 . What “I” will spend an aeon etc.
    When I die then what “I” will suffer in hells?
    I , this I, can see the sense in trying to follow the path to improve future rebirths but I have never been much moved by threats of future hells. I tend to view them as constructs of this human mind, then after death I will face what comes in whatever form I have taken

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