Dharma Wheel

A Buddhist discussion forum on Mahayana and Vajrayana Buddhism
It is currently Mon Dec 22, 2014 10:25 pm

All times are UTC [ DST ]


Forum rules


Please click here to view the forum rules



Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 32 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2
Author Message
 Post subject: Re: Beginning a Ngöndro
PostPosted: Thu May 29, 2014 7:24 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2012 10:19 pm
Posts: 460
What I meant by my previous statement was that Mr. Erlewine does a great job at conveying the "shock and awe" factor of how many of us "Western" Buddhists initially feel about ngöndro, but his leaving out of certain more traditional explanations could lead someone to mischaracterize it. For instance:

Quote:
What was not clear when I first heard about ngöndro is why it exists. It is not primarily intended to be a life-long practice, although some do it. It is not something you have to do or that everyone does. It is purely remedial, a simple remedy, but for what? It sounded like a trip to the woodshed when I first heard about it.

Personally I think the choice of the word "remedial," with its negative connotations, is perhaps a poor choice. Those who chance across this may begin to think "I don't need remedial work... I need to move forward, not backward!" The first two practices (Refuge & Bodhicitta and Vajrasattva) are to purify obscurations, and the second two (Mandala and Guru Yoga) are to gather merit. These two processes (purification and accumulation) are things I think we all can see a use for, rather than feel like we're wearing a dunce cap and sitting in a corner while the cool kids get to play.

Quote:
In fact, in Tibet, dharma students often do ngöndro BEFORE they ever try to seriously meditate. Think about that please. Perhaps the only reason that here in the U.S. we first try to learn to meditate is because ngöndro is too difficult for Americans to contemplate. Yet we are very comfortable with various physical exercise programs. Well, ngöndro is essentially the same thing, but it is primarily a mind-exercising regime, as in: the mind is something we also have to get in shape and learn how to use.

Here I think it is worth noting that it isn't just Americans choosing to do shamatha & vipashyana before ngöndro, but arguably just as much a matter of emphasis on the Lama's side. Several Tibetan teachers have made a point of mentioning that "Westerners" don't have the cultural baggage that Tibetans do, and that this means they can more readily jump in on those meditative practices. Some have even gone as far as to say that it was a fault of the Tibetans that they didn't strenuously engage in these, choosing to rely on lamas to do pujas, etc. Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche and Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche come to mind here.

Otherwise I think it's a pretty good intro, all in all...

_________________
"The Sutras, Tantras, and Philosophical Scriptures are great in number. However life is short, and intelligence is limited, so it's hard to cover them completely. You may know a lot, but if you don't put it into practice, it's like dying of thirst on the shore of a great lake. Likewise, it happens that a common corpse is found in the bed of a great scholar." ~ Karma Chagme

དྲིན་ཆེན་རྗེ་བཙུན་བླ་མ་རཱ་ག་ཨ་སྱ་མཁྱེན་ནོ།
ཀརྨ་པ་མཁྱེན་ནོ།


:namaste:


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Beginning a Ngöndro
PostPosted: Thu May 29, 2014 8:08 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue May 15, 2012 11:09 am
Posts: 2552
I did Ngondro back in the day...under CTR while he was still in the robe. Its was 'Precious Garland' ( Gampopa's ) and "Torch Of Certainty " all the way.
But he sent a number of us to learn Vipassana from the Thai monk Chao Khun Dhammasudhi. who later was known as Dhiravamsa.
The idea was for us to teach others who were his students..
It didn't quite work out that way..but thats a whole 'nother story.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Beginning a Ngöndro
PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2014 5:25 am 
Online

Joined: Wed May 29, 2013 6:13 am
Posts: 2193
Simon E. wrote:
I did Ngondro back in the day...under CTR while he was still in the robe.

Wow... :bow:…and I prided myself on being an old-timer! After all you've seen this website must seem tame!

_________________
A human being has his limits. And thus, in every conceivable way, with every possible means, he tries to make the teaching enter into his own limits. ChNN


Last edited by smcj on Fri May 30, 2014 5:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Beginning a Ngöndro
PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2014 5:32 am 
Online

Joined: Wed May 29, 2013 6:13 am
Posts: 2193
Quote:
Here I think it is worth noting that it isn't just Americans choosing to do shamatha & vipashyana before ngöndro, but arguably just as much a matter of emphasis on the Lama's side.

Also worth noting is that the last two lines in "The Torch of Certainty" are:

Do not run full tilt at tranquility and insight. First, cultivate a fertile ground for positive qualities within yourself.

A virtuous/positively charged mind is generally considered an asset when approaching shamatha. Of course YMMV.

_________________
A human being has his limits. And thus, in every conceivable way, with every possible means, he tries to make the teaching enter into his own limits. ChNN


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Beginning a Ngöndro
PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2014 9:34 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue May 15, 2012 11:09 am
Posts: 2552
smcj wrote:
Simon E. wrote:
I did Ngondro back in the day...under CTR while he was still in the robe.

Wow... :bow:…and I prided myself on being an old-timer! After all you've seen this website must seem tame!



" Tame " isn't the word I would choose.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Beginning a Ngöndro
PostPosted: Wed Jul 16, 2014 8:16 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2012 10:19 pm
Posts: 460
I found this (excerpted from a description of upcoming teachings with Khenpo Samdrup at GBI) to be a good summary of the importance of the so-called "ordinary foundations":

Quote:
Contemplation of the Four Thoughts, whose fruit is the renunciation of samsara, is a profound practice that lays the foundation for all subsequent practice. As pointed out by His Eminence Garchen Rinpoche, “If you think getting a full night’s sleep is a good thing, this is a sign you have not really understood the meaning of the Four Thoughts.” He further said that “in order to really integrate their meaning, it is important to think about them every day.”

To lay a firm foundation for practice, we contemplate the following: the preciousness of our human incarnation, the certainty of death and the impermanence of all that exists, the principle of karmic cause and effect, and the defects of samsara. Until our contemplation bears fruit, we will continue to seek happiness through samsaric existence, which always only leads to more suffering.

The practice of the Four Thoughts, also known as the “Ordinary Preliminaries,” may be done as part of one’s daily practice or intensively in 100-day retreat.

Recommended reading: Gampopa, The Jewel Ornament of Liberation, Chapters 2-11; Patrul Rinpoche, The Words of My Perfect Teacher, Chapters 1-4; Khandro Rinpoche, This Perfect Life; and Thrangu Rinpoche, Four Foundations of Buddhist Practice.

_________________
"The Sutras, Tantras, and Philosophical Scriptures are great in number. However life is short, and intelligence is limited, so it's hard to cover them completely. You may know a lot, but if you don't put it into practice, it's like dying of thirst on the shore of a great lake. Likewise, it happens that a common corpse is found in the bed of a great scholar." ~ Karma Chagme

དྲིན་ཆེན་རྗེ་བཙུན་བླ་མ་རཱ་ག་ཨ་སྱ་མཁྱེན་ནོ།
ཀརྨ་པ་མཁྱེན་ནོ།


:namaste:


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Beginning a Ngöndro
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2014 9:02 am 
Offline

Joined: Sat Apr 24, 2010 11:22 pm
Posts: 133
Dear Malcolm,

Is this translation finished? If so, is it available?

Thank you.

Best Regards,

Jens

Malcolm wrote:

I am in the process of translating the Sakya Ngondro commentary. It has a very extensive section on the four common preliminaries.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Beginning a Ngöndro
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2014 2:21 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am
Posts: 12736
Dharmaswede wrote:
Dear Malcolm,

Is this translation finished? If so, is it available?

Thank you.

Best Regards,

Jens

Malcolm wrote:

I am in the process of translating the Sakya Ngondro commentary. It has a very extensive section on the four common preliminaries.


I am very nearly done with the translation, and it should be ready for publication sometime next year. Not sure who is going to publish it but since it is being sponsored directly by HH Sakya Trizin, I am sure there will be no problem finding a publisher. When it is published, it will likely be about 350 pages long.

_________________
http://www.atikosha.org
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://www.bhaisajya.guru
http://www.sakyapa.net
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

How can you not practice the highest Dharma
at this time of obtaining a perfect human body?

-- Jetsun Dragpa Gyaltsen


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Beginning a Ngöndro
PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 6:55 am 
Offline

Joined: Sat Apr 24, 2010 11:22 pm
Posts: 133
Amazing, I really look forward to it.

Thank you!

/Jens

Malcolm wrote:
Dharmaswede wrote:
Dear Malcolm,

Is this translation finished? If so, is it available?

Thank you.

Best Regards,

Jens

Malcolm wrote:

I am in the process of translating the Sakya Ngondro commentary. It has a very extensive section on the four common preliminaries.


I am very nearly done with the translation, and it should be ready for publication sometime next year. Not sure who is going to publish it but since it is being sponsored directly by HH Sakya Trizin, I am sure there will be no problem finding a publisher. When it is published, it will likely be about 350 pages long.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Beginning a Ngöndro
PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 2:42 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2014 10:27 pm
Posts: 674
Location: Fresno, California
Malcolm wrote:
I am in the process of translating the Sakya Ngondro commentary. It has a very extensive section on the four common preliminaries.

I am very nearly done with the translation, and it should be ready for publication sometime next year. Not sure who is going to publish it but since it is being sponsored directly by HH Sakya Trizin, I am sure there will be no problem finding a publisher. When it is published, it will likely be about 350 pages long.


Very cool. Think ngondro has something for everyone. Be great blessing!

_________________
I should be meditating.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Beginning a Ngöndro
PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 7:33 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Oct 31, 2010 5:04 pm
Posts: 248
Something on four mind-turnings. Written by someone who attained the final goal:

http://www.lotsawahouse.org/tibetan-masters/nyala-pema-dundul/signs-practice-penetrating-mind


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Beginning a Ngöndro
PostPosted: Fri Nov 28, 2014 6:39 am 
Offline

Joined: Mon Jun 25, 2012 1:15 am
Posts: 227
It would be nice to here stories of fellow dharmawheel practictioners and how the integrated the four ordinary preliminaries into their daily practice.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 32 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2

All times are UTC [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Fa Dao, yan kong and 9 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group