When to Practise Guru Yoga
You can practise Guru Yoga any time. Before you eat something, before going to sleep or when you are doing anything, any work, as you begin, you can remember Tapihritsa and offer him whatever you are going to eat or drink or do. Very often, think of Tapihritsa as a friend of yours; day or night, any time, you are together. If you have devotion and trust in him, then he is also a very great, powerful guardian. You can think you receive everything from him.
If you want to help somebody else, instead of receiving the elements [representing his knowledge and blessings] yourself, you can visualize the other person is receiving them and being purified. That is great. It is not just like doing something yourself in a simple way; this is much more because you have the background of his blessings and power. So if you do this, is it is also a kind of Refuge.
Tapihritsa represents all the Three Jewels and if you always remember Refuge with devotion and trust him, then this is what we call karpo chigthub, practising one single way which is good enough.
When you visualize Tapihritsa and do Guru Yoga, it is important for people who will have blessings and be connected to this teaching, and secondly, if your main practice is Guru Yoga, it can be helpful not only for this lifetime, but more importantly for when you die. As far as you have become familiar with this practice, depending on how strong your devotion is and how clear and stable your devotion [visualization] is, you can trust, and, if you trust, you may see him in your dreams. Depending on how deep your connection with Tapihritsa and the Three Jewels is, they will lead you in the next stage.
Everybody knows there is only one way to go, whether you wish to or not. At that time, it is important to have prepared something. That situation is clear: you have to go there. Your personal conditions don’t make much difference, not at all. At that time the only thing which counts is this kind of spiritual practice. So that is why I am determined to say [these things] and teach all the time. From me.
 I.e. everyone has to die sometime.
Extracted from: Lachen Drenpa Namkha, SEVEN MIRRORS OF DZOGCHEN, Oral Teachings by YONGDZIN LOPÖN TENZIN NAMDAK RINPOCHE, Buddhas Weg, Siedelsbrunn, Germany,24 – 27 September 2011 and 27 – 30 September 2012, Transcribed and edited by Carol Ermakova and Dmitry Ermakov, COMPLETE EDITION, (UK: FPYB, 2015).
Cover photo: Used with kind permission from Largen Lama