Vision, Values & Beliefs

Vision Statement

  • We envision Kadampa Meditation Center Hollywood as a place where hundreds, and eventually thousands, of people gather in order to improve the quality of their minds, thereby transforming themselves and the society in which they live.
  • We envision a diverse, joyful spiritual community where everyone is welcome to learn constructive new thoughts, attitudes and meditations that lead to authentic, lasting peace of mind and mental freedom.
  • We envision a community of people who are increasingly motivated to love and benefit others.
  • Our vision is to achieve peace in our world by teaching scientific methods that transform individuals, and therefore society, one mind at a time. In this way, inner peace will naturally lead to outer peace.

Statement of Purpose

Through our courses, retreats and classes we wish to help people in the following ways:

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    Solve Daily Problems…

    Our talks and meditations are designed to solve the problems of modern living, providing relevant solutions to the struggles we all face on a day to day basis. Through practical, simple and scientific methods, people from all backgrounds and walks of life can directly transform the way they perceive themselves, others and the world in which we live. We offer tools that people can immediately apply to solve their daily problems and become more relaxed, happy and at peace.

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    Heal Mental Pain…

    The classes provide practical solutions to pervasive mental and emotional difficulties, helping us to heal anxiety, stress, anger, frustration, depression, loneliness, jealousy, miserliness, attachment, addiction, boredom and confusion.

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    Cultivate Good Qualities…

    Through training, everyone can learn how to cultivate inner qualities that lead to authentic, lasting happiness simply by changing their thoughts and attitudes. Through practicing Kadampa Buddhist meditation, we become more kind-hearted, patient, positive, generous, joyful, relaxed, confident, focused, content, peaceful, blissful, creative, wise, and fulfilled.

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    Change Ourselves, Change Our World…

    The practical meditations and ideas we teach help people to change their mind, which is the most powerful agent of change in the world. Our experience of our self and our life is a reflection of the quality of our mind; therefore, if we are to change our world, we need to change the quality of our mind. By thinking about ourselves, others and the world in more constructive, positive and virtuous ways, we become happier and more peaceful, and as a result we have a positive impact upon our relationships and our world.

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    Develop Our Spiritual Potential…

    We have an extraordinary capacity to change. Step by step, we can learn how to tap into this powerful potential that lies within. Gradually, through training our mind, we can reach our highest spiritual potential, the fully awakened state of enlightenment, and be of tremendous benefit to our family, friends, and to this world.

“When the turbulence of distracting thoughts subsides and our mind becomes still, a deep happiness and contentment naturally arises from within.”
Geshe Kelsang Gyatso, The New Meditation Handbook
 

Core Values

Love & Compassion
The intention behind all of Buddha’s teachings is universal compassion, the wish to permanently free each and every living being from all suffering.  Our teachings are rooted in the principle of non-harmfulness, trying never to cause pain to anyone, and we regard this practice as the foundation for authentic spiritual growth. We train in cherishing others, viewing the happiness and freedom of our family, friends and all living beings as supremely important.

Wisdom
Although everyone wishes to be free from suffering and to experience lasting peace and happiness, few understand how to do so. Buddha’s teachings are a treasure trove of profound, virtuous intelligence, clearly identifying the actual, internal causes of unhappiness and problems, and describing in precise detail how to solve our inner problems and reach our highest spiritual potential. Through developing our wisdom, we gain insight into the actual nature of the mind, our self and our world, thereby learning how to align our thinking with reality. Consequently, we improve our wisdom and experience more peace, joy and fulfillment, eventually achieving the perfect bliss of full enlightenment.

Meditation
The primary method by which we help people to change their mind, and thereby their life and world, is the practice of meditation. Meditation is a powerful tool for personal transformation, whereby one learns to direct and control the mind by thinking in ways that are constructive, positive and virtuous.

Inner Peace
The more familiar our mind becomes with virtuous and constructive thoughts and attitudes, the calmer and more peaceful we feel. Naturally, from this inner peace we experience a pure form of inner enjoyment. This inner peace naturally leads to outer peace.

Community
Everyone is welcome; we are an inclusive community, open to all regardless of faith, background or way of life. We understand that it is vital for people to have a safe and open community in which to grow and learn about spiritual practice.

The Four Noble Truths of Buddhism

1

Although we may have many enjoyable experiences, ordinary life is naturally filled with problems and suffering.

2

The causes of the suffering we experience are found within the mind.

3

We can systematically remove these inner causes of suffering through training our mind in spiritual practice.

4

We can thereby end our suffering permanently and reach our highest potential.

Basic Kadampa Buddhist Beliefs

  • Happiness comes from inner peace. Without inner peace, outer peace is impossible.
  • The best method to make ourself and others happy is to cherish others, believing that others’ happiness and freedom are important.
  • The mind is the creator of all we experience.
  • There is a fundamental spiritual law of cause and effect, or karma – all of our actions, both good and bad, lead to specific results. In particular, from virtuous actions come happiness, and from non-virtuous actions come suffering.
  • The mind is a formless continuum, connected to, but not arisen from, or the same entity, as the body.
  • Therefore, the mind continues when the body dies. This process of living, dying and taking rebirth is known as reincarnation.
  • All living beings share the same basic wish, to be happy and avoid suffering.
  • All living beings possess a pure, indestructible potential for spiritual development.
  • All living beings will eventually attain the state of complete purity, enlightenment.
  • All living beings are fundamentally equal in these respects.
  • Developing our compassion is the essence of our spiritual life, the wish to protect others from their suffering and its causes.
  • By gaining insight into the nature of mind and reality, we develop a special wisdom which gives us the actual ability to benefit others.
  • The greatest purpose of our human life is to actualize our full spiritual potential, enlightenment, so that we can be of greatest benefit to all living beings.
  • Through the power of authentic Tantric practice we can transform our experience of daily enjoyments into the spiritual path.
  • The Buddhas, or fully enlightened beings, love each and every living being unconditionally.
  • Everyone can receive benefit from these teachings regardless of their faith, background or way of life.
  • The principal objects of faith in Kadampa Buddhism are the Three Jewels: Buddha, the enlightened source of the teachings, Dharma, the actual states of mind that lead to lasting happiness, and Sangha, the community of spiritual friends.