However, just gaining knowledge is not enough.
If we have held the relevant knowledge for a long time, but it has not worked a change within us, then we will remain the same person. We will have the same anger, and we will be unable to proceed in the Dharma. Although we might have heard about the difficulties of obtaining a precious human birth a hundred times, if it has not made a change in us, if we remain on the same level with the same defilements, then this means that we are not really practicing.
Why is this so? Because we are not really experiencing the Dharma.
Thus we see that knowing about the Dharma and experiencing it through contemplation are two very different things.
You may know many teachings, but if you do not practice them, if you do not use them in your daily life, then this is not right.
For example, the purpose of making delicious food is to eat it. If you make it but you do not eat it, there is no point.
Similarly, knowing the Dharma only matters when we utilize it in our daily life. To do this, we have to use many different methods, including our daily experiences.
With these basic foundations, if we understand everything we see not only as a teaching but as a spur toward an inner feeling, a spiritual urge, then we will not be wasting our time.
We will definitely make every effort, just as people in prison constantly have only one thought, “When can I get out of this place?”
When you have this real, sincere desire to practice the Dharma, then your inner, higher meditations will generally arise.
~ The 41st Sakya Trizin, Kyabgon Gongma Trichen Rinpoche
(Reference: padmamalla, Instagram, 26 June 2020)