Moderator: Tibetan Buddhism moderators
mr. gordo wrote:I came across a quote that was supposedly said by Dudjom Rinpoche on mantra recitation:
"For those of ordinary ability, 10,000 repetitions of the mantra each day seem easy. For those of below-average ability, 1,000 repetitions each day are the best they can do."
Just as a gauge, I took Green Tara's mantra and timed one recitation to be around 2 seconds. From this I derive the following:
30 mantras in 1 minute
1800 mantras in 1 hour
10800 mantras in 6 hours
Does anyone think at times you put too much pressure on yourself if you're a lay practitioner? Too little pressure? Thoughts in general?
heart wrote:Most possibly Dudjom Rinpoche is talking about a retreat situation.
heart wrote:Most possibly Dudjom Rinpoche is talking about a retreat situation
Pero wrote:heart wrote:Most possibly Dudjom Rinpoche is talking about a retreat situation.
Hm I don't know, why would anyone in a retreat situation be able to do only 1000 reps? That's not that little if you're not in retreat, but if you are it's nothing. Also I'm not sure with which capacity this is related to.
Oh and I don't do nearly enough. I don't put much pressure on myself either. Sometimes I feel really bad for not practicing as much as I could though.
As for thoughts in general, quality>quantity.
Seriously, sometimes I get too caught up with the amount of mantras I'm going to do when it would be better to get caught up with how I'm doing them...
kirtu wrote:heart wrote:Most possibly Dudjom Rinpoche is talking about a retreat situation
He's talking about non-retreatants. However, which Dudjom Rinpoche said this and when did they say it? In traditional Tibet anyone could have done this. The quote us not likely intended for today's free time deprived society.
After all, pre-modern farming, husbandry, trading and light industry provide sufficient time to recite mantra as long as the society also supports it or if one is alone. One generally can't spend time reciting mantra in the workplace in modern society.
heart wrote:kirtu wrote:heart wrote:Most possibly Dudjom Rinpoche is talking about a retreat situation
He's talking about non-retreatants.
I don't believe it was any more possible in Tibet than it is here. Like Cone says, if you don't do them during a formal session, you can't count them. No, I am pretty sure he is talking to full time practitioners in this statement, in retreat or not, monks and nuns and yogis most probably.
kirtu wrote:That's what I had thought too - he was talking about full time practitioners but not in a retreat setting.
It was more possible in old Tibet because they had more time. We don't have any time at all.
Jamgon Kongtrul gave advice more than once that says that recitation can be done basically continuously through the day. This is stated in "Creation and Completion" for example which would imply counting recitation outside of a retreat setting.
heart wrote:Quality is a lot more important than quantity but quantity don't necessary mean you lose quality.
Yeshe wrote:Certainly, mental recitation does allow for more rapid accumulation and for greater accuracy - I don't recall mispronouncing etc. when doing so.
dzoki wrote:In old India practitioners practiced until they had realisation, that's why the became mahasiddhas. In Tibet it seems the numbers became more important. Nowadays it seems that all that matters is whether one has done ngondro or not and how much mantras one has chanted. If you go to India and you request the teachings all you hear is: Have you done ngondro?
You reply: Yes.
Teacher asks: What kind of ngondro.
Reply: (for example) Drikung Kagyu.
Teacher: Oh well, but this is a nyingma teaching, you must do Longchen Nyingthig ngondro now.
Ok you do that, next time you go to some other teacher to request the teaching.
T:Have you done ngondro?
T:ok, what kind?
S:Drikung Kagyu and Longchen Nyingthig.
T: Ah, well, but this is a Drugpa Kagyu teaching. You should do Drugpa Kagyu ngondro.
And on and on it goes. I wonder how many ngondros have Tibetans done that they request every student do a ngondro of their own tradition in order to get the teaching.
Alas, we live in the age of degeneration.
Yeshe wrote:If that is acceptable, why not copy and paste mantras and Buddha images into every cell of an Excel computer spreadsheet and knock off the lot in a few hours? Just like the Tibetans of medieval times, I would just be using the technology of the time to speed things up, so it must be OK.
one thing I have noticed is that almost everybody including Tibetans and Tibetan masters counts on the mala quicker than one would actually pronounce the mantra. So I would not take the lofty numbers that many practitioners boast about for granted.
In my opinion it is much better to rely on signs of the practice then on numbers of mantras that one has chanted. I someone can have vision of deity and siddhis just after one mala of mantras then why accumulate numbers? On the other hand even if one accumulated milions of mantras but did not change a slightest bit towards a compassionate outlook, then what´s all the bragging about?