It doesn’t make sense to grab at the highest teachings and reject the rest. It is the kindness of the buddhas to provide us with a complete path, and the preliminary practices are part of that path. All great teachers of the past have taught the identical message: ‘Gather the accumulations, purify the obscurations, and receive the blessings of a qualified master.’ In the tradition I represent, the preliminary practices are very, very important. I don’t think that the buddhas and all the past masters have created them just to lead us astray.
Shambala Sun, May 2001, p. 59
It is the kindness of the buddhas to provide us with a complete path, and the preliminary practices are part of that complete path. Often students refrain from doing them because they do not understand their purpose. Some students even think the preliminary practices are some sort of punishment. However, this is not a punishment meted out to torture people, not at all. Your laziness might say, ‘Oh, no, the preliminary practices are so difficult. They must be meaningless. I don’t want to do them.’ But you have to smash that lazy tendency. The main obstacle to practice is laziness. If you crush it from the beginning, your laziness will get scared and run away, ‘Ooh, I cannot go near these people; it is too much for me.’ Prostrations will chop up your physical laziness and mandala offerings will chop up your attachment.
Shambala Sun, May 2001, p. 60