psychedelics and visions

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psychedelics and visions

Postby Nighthawk » Mon Jul 30, 2012 1:32 am

How important and widespread is the use of psychedelics such as datura in order to have visions of Vajrayoginis, Dakinis, Taras etc. amongst Vajrayana masters and practitioners? Are these visions to be seen as genuine spiritual experiences or just mere hallucinations of the mind on drugs? I would love to hear your opinions on this matter.
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Re: psychedelics and visions

Postby odysseus » Mon Jul 30, 2012 3:47 am

Nighthawk wrote:How important and widespread is the use of psychedelics such as datura in order to have visions of Vajrayoginis, Dakinis, Taras etc. amongst Vajrayana masters and practitioners? Are these visions to be seen as genuine spiritual experiences or just mere hallucinations of the mind on drugs? I would love to hear your opinions on this matter.


I have no idea whether any Vajrayana people use this.

From my own experience, the "visions" you get are more of a meeting with "Ultimate Reality" showing you many things that mostly belong to Samsara. They´re not hallucinations but revelations. What I mean by Ultimate Reality is that you get in touch with a higher level of reality that will reveal some information to you. But this can get tiresome and cause vexation. Some call Ultimate Reality "God", but I don´t believe it is. If you want to call such experiences spiritual I would not agree because they are not "Ultimate Truth" visions - they are mundane. Yes, I saw some "deities" on psychedelics but this was my own reflections on them and not proper visions.

Then there is the experience of "clear light of pure reality" as described in Timothy Leary´s "psychedelic experience". He says if you see this you are lucky, but I think he was as naive as I was. The clear light is the realisation of Sunyata. Is it bragging to say I saw this light? It happened only one time and it was a few weeks after taking psychedelic. This light is seeable by meditation and everyone knows it´s a safer method...

My personal opinion.
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Re: psychedelics and visions

Postby Andrew108 » Mon Jul 30, 2012 2:43 pm

It's just a big no. Not even to be considered.
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"What is the All? Simply the eye & forms, ear & sounds, nose & aromas, tongue & flavors, body & tactile sensations, intellect & ideas. This, monks, is called the All. Anyone who would say, 'Repudiating this All, I will describe another,' if questioned on what exactly might be the grounds for his statement, would be unable to explain, and furthermore, would be put to grief. Why? Because it lies beyond range." Sabba Sutta.
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Re: psychedelics and visions

Postby odysseus » Mon Jul 30, 2012 3:05 pm

Andrew108 wrote:It's just a big no. Not even to be considered.


I have no proof because I can´t find the article but a very respected lama said that LSD is not evil. But it´s a controlled substance so you say the "real deal".
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Re: psychedelics and visions

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jul 30, 2012 3:20 pm

Nighthawk wrote:How important and widespread is the use of psychedelics such as datura in order to have visions of Vajrayoginis, Dakinis, Taras etc. amongst Vajrayana masters and practitioners? Are these visions to be seen as genuine spiritual experiences or just mere hallucinations of the mind on drugs? I would love to hear your opinions on this matter.



In general there is no use of hallucinogens in Varjayāna. Even in the case of certain exceptions, these usages are no longer current i.e. they are not part of the living tradition. Where they were used, hallucinogens served only to demonstrate that the mind was not a fixed substance.

People who have used hallucinogens can understand their experiences with this in this respect. Garab Dorje clearly states in one commentary that hallucinogens merely generate worldly visions. So from a Vajrayāna perspective, hallucinogens do not have much, if any, spiritual value.

That being said, this is not to deny the value of the spritual traditions of Huichol Indians, or Ayahuasca shamans who commune with plant spirits, etc.

M
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Re: psychedelics and visions

Postby underthetree » Mon Jul 30, 2012 6:18 pm

Much interesting material here: http://vajrayana.faithweb.com/rich_text_5.html and also in the 'Archive' section in the left-hand menu, among a lot of other fascinating things.

I've given some of these a fairly cursory read and Malcolm is right: this is historical usage, not current.
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Re: psychedelics and visions

Postby Tarpa » Mon Jul 30, 2012 8:17 pm

Thanks for the clarification of that, I've always wondered about the use of some hallucinogens in early vajrayana rites but always refrained from bringing the topic up because I was sure it would just be dismissed straightaway as nonsense. There are very obviously datura rites in some root tantras such as the mahakalatantra but people don't seem to read the root tantras very much, in any case I was wondering if datura leaves are a good dharmapala offering for the shrine ?, datura grows all over the area I live in so I was wondering if I could use it as a dharmapala offering, not to smoke it.
Last edited by Tarpa on Mon Jul 30, 2012 9:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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is what the protector of the world has taught as the transcendence
of suffering.
Knots tied on space
are untied by space itself.

May I never be seperated from perfect masters in all lives,
and delightfully experiencing the magnificent dharma,
completing all qualities of the stages of the paths
may I quickly attain the state of Vajradhara
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Re: psychedelics and visions

Postby conebeckham » Mon Jul 30, 2012 8:22 pm

I wouldn't offer it, personally.

That stuff is incredibly dangerous, and toxic, as well.

Some things are best left alone--and I'm not interested in demonzing psychedelics at all.
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Re: psychedelics and visions

Postby Tarpa » Mon Jul 30, 2012 9:18 pm

lol, demons on acid. Yes that stuff's bad news, having grown up in the desert and having been an acid head in my youth I knew all about datura and that it was growing everywhere but I never had any inclination to try it, the indians call it loco weed and I had met a transient who used it all the time and was completely insane, a friend of mine tried it, made tea out of it, then like an idiot he went to the mall, the cops had to drag him out from under a clothes rack in some store where he was hiding and freaking out. You're probably right I think I'll pass on using it as an offering. And yes psychadelics don't have much use other than simply showing u how pliable perception and so called reality is, u learn all u will learn from them the first time, any insights that arise just fly on by and u can't stabilize any of it unless maybe yer a shaman, all it does is just make the brain fire off signals going all over the place and all at the same time, sensory overload, there's no stability in it.
The nonexistence of the transcendence of suffering
is what the protector of the world has taught as the transcendence
of suffering.
Knots tied on space
are untied by space itself.

May I never be seperated from perfect masters in all lives,
and delightfully experiencing the magnificent dharma,
completing all qualities of the stages of the paths
may I quickly attain the state of Vajradhara
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Re: psychedelics and visions

Postby dzogchungpa » Wed Aug 01, 2012 10:35 pm

From Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche's "Longchen Nyingtik Practice Manual":

Student: It seems that once this casket is opening a little it is a similar experience to tripping or taking other kinds of drugs. So I was wondering, if for example, a person takes something like magic mushrooms, can this be helpful or is it just misleading?
Rinpoche: That's a good question. Tulku Orgyen Rinpoche, one of the past great masters, was offered all kinds of things such as LSD, cocaine, heroin, and so forth. After trying these various substances, he concluded if it is a good practitioner taking these things, it can help in enhancing the practice. If someone who is not really a good practitioner should take these things, it is a different matter. It could then become an addiction, and you don't want to have a tripping dependence on a substance. Beccoming dependant on a substance means you then become a slave of the substance. It's far better to have to depend on your mind.
Student: How about if you just do it once?
Rinpoche: I think it can help but that all depends. I mean, with many of the dharma students I have met, they seem to have had their introduction to the dharma by taking drugs. This is not so true nowadays, though. But for the older generation, many have come to the dharma out of being hippies or out of their experiences with drugs. So in such circumstances, before you do one-hundred-thousand prostrations to Guru Rinpoche, you should do at least half a prostration to the drug.
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Re: psychedelics and visions

Postby heart » Thu Aug 02, 2012 5:54 am

dzogchungpa wrote:From Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche's "Longchen Nyingtik Practice Manual":

Student: It seems that once this casket is opening a little it is a similar experience to tripping or taking other kinds of drugs. So I was wondering, if for example, a person takes something like magic mushrooms, can this be helpful or is it just misleading?
Rinpoche: That's a good question. Tulku Orgyen Rinpoche, one of the past great masters, was offered all kinds of things such as LSD, cocaine, heroin, and so forth. After trying these various substances, he concluded if it is a good practitioner taking these things, it can help in enhancing the practice. If someone who is not really a good practitioner should take these things, it is a different matter. It could then become an addiction, and you don't want to have a tripping dependence on a substance. Beccoming dependant on a substance means you then become a slave of the substance. It's far better to have to depend on your mind.
Student: How about if you just do it once?
Rinpoche: I think it can help but that all depends. I mean, with many of the dharma students I have met, they seem to have had their introduction to the dharma by taking drugs. This is not so true nowadays, though. But for the older generation, many have come to the dharma out of being hippies or out of their experiences with drugs. So in such circumstances, before you do one-hundred-thousand prostrations to Guru Rinpoche, you should do at least half a prostration to the drug.


:smile:
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Re: psychedelics and visions

Postby Tarpa » Fri Aug 03, 2012 7:32 am

Wow, well it's good to see people aren't denying drug use in early vajrayana, I think this topic came up on e-sangha before and wasn't accepted, some people have a fit hearing about this sort of thing and will never believe it, of course it makes perfect sense in shamanic and magickal systems, but then most would deny tantra is also on one level very much a magickal system even as they use talismans, amulets, herbs, gems, metals, the phases of the moon and astrology, necromancy, divination, oracles, scrying mirrors, propitiation of gods and demons, a full understanding and use of the elements on all levels, corpse re-animation and transference rites, destructive magick, the experiences and dimension of lucid dreaming, power substances, sigils, casting a 3 fold circle, triangles, ritual knives, the use of demons requiring red sacrifices albeit "Buddhacized" in the form of torma as well as the many animal and human simulacrum offered in ransoming rites, the use of thread crosses to ensnare demons, the main ritual tools, bell and dorje, on one outer level ie: male / female closely resembling the main ritual tools of a witch ie: the athame / chalice, the hexagram, ritual correspondences with the 5 elements, respecting the guardians of the directions, a Tibetan government that used divination, oracles, and probably astrology as protocol to decision making,
the most highly developed alchemical principles, magickal ointments for the same things u find they are used for in witchcraft, walking fast, invisibility, flying, etc., the same correspondences and occult importance of some substances, places, and things, such as crossroads, and the magickal use of certain animals, animal parts and bloods and other nasty ingredients, burying things in the ground where the " target " will walk over them, what is known in witchcraft and considered a very nasty rite as the grand bewitchment ie: cutting up an effigy of the " target " within a triangle and burning etc., burying things under houses and in foundations of buildings, magickal squares on talismans, the making of torma into magickal weapons, etc. etc. etc. In short you will find every single occult field in vajrayana that you will find outside of it plus some, and the most highly developed occult praxis and wisdom on the planet. I understand that most of this isn't practiced by anybody in the living tradition, and much isn't relevant to practitioners of Buddhadharma, and much of it is probably just folk / cultural traditions that were absorbed into tantra in India and then in Tibet, but I find it interesting. Sorry for going off topic again.
The nonexistence of the transcendence of suffering
is what the protector of the world has taught as the transcendence
of suffering.
Knots tied on space
are untied by space itself.

May I never be seperated from perfect masters in all lives,
and delightfully experiencing the magnificent dharma,
completing all qualities of the stages of the paths
may I quickly attain the state of Vajradhara
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Re: psychedelics and visions

Postby Nighthawk » Sat Aug 04, 2012 5:11 am

Tarpa wrote:Wow, well it's good to see people aren't denying drug use in early vajrayana, I think this topic came up on e-sangha before and wasn't accepted, some people have a fit hearing about this sort of thing and will never believe it, of course it makes perfect sense in shamanic and magickal systems, but then most would deny tantra is also on one level very much a magickal system even as they use talismans, amulets, herbs, gems, metals, the phases of the moon and astrology, necromancy, divination, oracles, scrying mirrors, propitiation of gods and demons, a full understanding and use of the elements on all levels, corpse re-animation and transference rites, destructive magick, the experiences and dimension of lucid dreaming, power substances, sigils, casting a 3 fold circle, triangles, ritual knives, the use of demons requiring red sacrifices albeit "Buddhacized" in the form of torma as well as the many animal and human simulacrum offered in ransoming rites, the use of thread crosses to ensnare demons, the main ritual tools, bell and dorje, on one outer level ie: male / female closely resembling the main ritual tools of a witch ie: the athame / chalice, the hexagram, ritual correspondences with the 5 elements, respecting the guardians of the directions, a Tibetan government that used divination, oracles, and probably astrology as protocol to decision making,
the most highly developed alchemical principles, magickal ointments for the same things u find they are used for in witchcraft, walking fast, invisibility, flying, etc., the same correspondences and occult importance of some substances, places, and things, such as crossroads, and the magickal use of certain animals, animal parts and bloods and other nasty ingredients, burying things in the ground where the " target " will walk over them, what is known in witchcraft and considered a very nasty rite as the grand bewitchment ie: cutting up an effigy of the " target " within a triangle and burning etc., burying things under houses and in foundations of buildings, magickal squares on talismans, the making of torma into magickal weapons, etc. etc. etc. In short you will find every single occult field in vajrayana that you will find outside of it plus some, and the most highly developed occult praxis and wisdom on the planet. I understand that most of this isn't practiced by anybody in the living tradition, and much isn't relevant to practitioners of Buddhadharma, and much of it is probably just folk / cultural traditions that were absorbed into tantra in India and then in Tibet, but I find it interesting. Sorry for going off topic again.

Ex hippy? :tongue:
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