In the gelug- vajrayana tradition there are several preliminary practices to prepare the body and mind for a long meditation retreat of 3 years. These are:
In front of our guru visualised in the form of Lama Tsongkhapa, the founder of the Gelugpa tradition,
1. Take refuge in buddha, dharma and sangha and generate the mind of bodhicitta, the altruistic wish to benefit all beings and free them from suffering.
2. Accumulate merit and purify our body, speech and mind we offer physical, verbal and mental prostrations.
3. Offer the mandala, imagining that we and all beings are in the Tushita heaven together with Lama Tsongkhapa.
4. Recite the 100 syllable mantra of Vajrasattva to reconnect with our fundamental purity and goodness.
5. Practice guru yoga to awaken blessings and realisations.
During this short course we will
1.learn how to visualise the refuge field, the meaning of the ganden lhagyema or 100s of guru- buddhas of the pureland of Tushita
2. Learn how to make prostrations with either the 35 confession buddhas ritual or a simpler one and begin our preliminary practice of the accumulation of 111,111 prostrations.