28 May 1998, San Francisco, CA, USA
In this teaching, Rinpoche brings together two powerful skillful means of realization - the view of absolute bodhicitta, and the relative practice of training the mind in compassion, showing how the two truths are united in the approach of Dzogchen. When you rest in the nature of mind, the state of the absolute, your heart opens and wisdom and compassion naturally emanate. In the practice of Dzogchen, you go back to a space of primordial purity, before everything got spoiled. In this space, all concepts dissolve and you look at things freshly. This wisdom view of the nature of mind informs your relative practice.
The relative practice of training the mind in bodhicitta works at dissolving the ego and helps you realize the view. Listening to the teachings processes your mind and your strong emotions until, eventually, no trace of them remains. Also, by exhausting the mind through analytical meditation, you discover that delusion is not real. Then you work with that realization to further purify your perception.
Your ego will make tremendous last efforts to hold on to some connection to samsara, but if you recognize this and if you have the teachings and view in you, it will be a tremendous support in overcoming difficulties and obstacles. By bringing this realization and view into your everyday life, you don the armor of endurance, so that nothing perturbs you - thereby further breaking down ego and giving birth to egolessness. Then you are ready to begin the practice of Tonglen.