The essence of Buddhism is beyond culture, but it is practiced by many different cultures, which use their traditions as the cup that holds the teachings. If the elements of these cultural trappings help other beings without causing harm, and if they don't contradict the four truths, then Siddhartha would encourage such practices.
Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche
The particular thing that has created the problems of life is the dissatisfied mind of desire, which clings first of all to this life, seeking only the temporary happiness of this life, and then to these eight objects:
Having comfort, not having discomfort, receiving materials (such as friends and so forth), not liking not to receive materials, having a good reputation, not having a reputation, receiving praise, not having criticism. The dissatisfied mind of desire clings to these eight objects.
Lama Zopa Rinpoche
We should also avoid thinking of ourselves as worthless persons – we are naturally free and unconditioned. We are intrinsically enlightened and lack nothing. When engaging in meditation practice, we should feel it to be as natural as eating, breathing and defecating. It should not become a specialized or formal event, bloated with seriousness and solemnity.
Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche
It is very important that we always check ourselves to see that our mind is free from disturbing emotions. If you do not check your own mind, then it is as if you are capable of seeing only what is outside yourself, noticing only what mistakes others have made, while remaining unaware of your own faults.
His Holiness Penor Rinpoche
Whoever has this bodhicitta arising in his or her heart is transformed into a bodhisattva. There is no distinction between male and female, between young and old, between high caste and low caste.
At that very moment when the bodhicitta arises, even those who are completely bound in the prison of samsara and overwhelmed with all different kinds of sufferings will transform into the sons and daughters of the buddhas. They will be called the bodhisattvas: the brave beings, the courageous beings, who work for the benefit of all sentient beings, who are on the path to enlightenment.
The moment that this idea, this inspiration, this motivation arises in you, the transformation takes place. At that very moment when this bodhicitta is arising, that person who has been the lowest of the low in the human society immediately becomes somebody who is worthy of respect and prostration, even by the gods. That's how precious it is.
Ringu Tulku Rinpoche