About Devotion

The Sanskrit bhakti is derived from the root bhak which means, among other things, to partake in or to receive one's share.

The Tibetan equivalent is mos-gus. Mos has a wide range of meanings. Basically, it means orienting the mind towards something desirable or appropriate. It also means actively striving and moving towards the desirable while remaining focused and undistracted. Gos means with respect.

In English, bhakti and mos-gu are both currently translated as devotion or love. This could be okay and maybe even helpful to counterbalance over-intellectualization, but let's not forget— devotion in Vajrayana is not a heart connection in an ordinary human way. It's a devotion towards enlightenment and towards everything that keeps our minds directed towards enlightenment sich as teachers, texts, and places.

In addition to that, how devotion arises is unique to the karmic constitution of individuals.

What does devotion mean (or not mean) to you? Please share your reflections in the Comments below.

Lama Yeshe Dechen Wangmo is a lineage holder of the Dudjom Dakini Heart Essence (mkha 'gro thug thig). Based on thirty-eight years of vajrayana study and practice and her knowledge of literary Tibetan, she offers inspiration, teaching and guidance. In 2002, she established Jnanasukha Foundation as a venue for the teachings of Yeshe Tsogyal and the female buddhas. Since then, the Foundation has generated several initiatives such as support for the birthplace of Yeshe Tsogyal in Tibet, pilgrimages to Tibet, scholarships, grants and humanitarian aid. www.jnanasukha.org