Lamrim: the Gradual Path to Enlightenment

About this section:
The Buddha gave teachings in order to share with us the path to enlightenment that he had actualized himself. These teachings are practical, give us the tools to deal with difficulties, and show us how to live a meaningful life.

The Four Noble Truths and the Noble Eight-fold Path are one way of formulating these teachings. The Gradual Path to Enlightenment is another. These two are compatible, and knowing both enables us to look at the same thing from different perspectives. In the early eleventh century, the Indian Buddhist master, Atisha condensed essential points from the sutras and ordered them into the text, Lamp of the Path. These were then expanded upon in the fourteenth century by the Tibetan Buddhist master, Lama Tzong Khapa into the text The Great Exposition on the Gradual Path to Enlightenment (Lam Rim Chemmo). Venerable Chodron comments on this text and relates these practical teachings to our daily lives.


Lamrim Outline in:
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- PDF format
- Microsoft Word format

Help with listening to audio recordings

Tapes of teachings given at DFF in Seattle can be ordered from DFF. Pls refer to:


4.B.2.A.1.b. Advantages & Disadvantages of 2 Kinds of Rebirth

Note: parts of the teachings were lost due to change of tape during recording.

*These are from a series of Lamrim teachings that Ven. Chodron gave at Dharma Friendship Foundation, Seattle, fr 1991 to 1994. The audio files were previously available on this website in realplayer format. These have been converted to mp3 format. The contents remain the same. The audio files and transcripts have also been renamed to run in sequence and to match the transcripts with their corresponding audio files. Another round of light editing has been done to most transcripts (revised on 5 Jan 2006).

*The Lower Realms. Dharma Friendship Foundation, Seattle. 1991/92. [Transcript in PDF format]

Ripening of karma at death time;
Squarely facing the possibility of rebirth in the lower realms
[17 min]: Download

Types of lower realms;
The 3 types of phenomena;
Are lower realms the creation of the mind?
Why thinik about the lower realms?
[22 min]: Download

Lower realms: Mental state? Physical state? Illusion?
Question-and-Answer session

[21 min]: Download

    Q&A topics (start time indicated at the end) discussed:

    1. Why are some phenomena extremely hidden? [3:02]
    2. How can we get out of the lower realms? [4:34]
    3. How not to get stuck in a relationship? [8:42]
    4. What kind of karmic imprints would ripen at the time of death? [11:29]
    5. What happens if there's sudden death or somebody is in a coma before they die? [13:53]
    6. What happens to people who commit suicide? [15:39]
    7. What is the Buddhist view on euthanasia? [18:24]
    8. What happens if we die with an indifferent or a cynical state of mind? [20:30]

Relationship between karmic actions & lower realms
[17 min]: Download

Reflections on the lower realms
[10 min]: Download


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