Studying the dharma sometimes feels like we’re being pushed and pulled in several directions all at once. “I GOT IT! I didn’t get it, I thought I had it figured out but now I am no longer sure I do.” To help us better understand the buddha and shambhala dharma several teachers have agreed to share with us their understanding. This time: Shastri Gayle Van Gils
What’s the difference between between wealth and being rich in the way that we usually understand it and the Shambhala understanding of those words?
Wealth as we usually use the term in western capitalistic society refers to an abundance of valuable material possessions. Rich is used in a very similar way…..to refer to an accumulation of money or precious substances, even large amounts of land or real estate.
In Shambhala, we regard familiarity with our true nature and a connection to the power and energy inherent in all of life to be true wealth, because it is that which brings us the greatest satisfaction in being alive. Wealthy in this sense is a sense of genuine joy and well-being that arises from being awake. Rich can be experienced as access through our sense perceptions to all the myriads of experiences available in each and every moment. When we don’t separate ourselves from others and from that which makes up our physical universe, we can appreciate and be part of the inherent richness that constantly surrounds and pervades our being.
Gayle Van Gils is a shastri from Florida, USA. She has been a student of the Vidyadhara Chogyam Trungpa, Rinpoche, and Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche since 1974. She is a ceramic artist and a business consultant in addition to teaching in Shambhala. You can check out her website here: empowermentcircles.com