Why do only very few practitioners attain rainbow body?

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Re: Why do only very few practitioners attain rainbow body?

Postby Norwegian » Sat Jul 19, 2014 5:19 pm

smcj,

I would just like to say that, if you don't know something about a path, for example Dzogchen (which you have said you know little about), and on top of this don't practice this path (which again you've said you don't), then it is a little bit puzzling as to why you would make these kind of comments about Dzogchen - especially since they are incorrect - and furthermore make comments about Dzogchen practicioners and their path. It's unskillful, and it is ignorant. The best as I see it, is one of the following alternatives:

1) Remain silent, and don't say anything at all, regardless of what you're thinking. There's no loss in being silent.
2) Take it upon yourself to make sure you correct your misunderstandings about Dzogchen and seek out a qualified Dzogchen master and receive Dzogchen teachings from that master, then study and practice Dzogchen. Then you will benefit from this, because you are wholeheartedly engaging in Dharma study and practice.

Otherwise when you're spreading misinformation, such as comparing Dzogchen with a lottery ticket, or saying wrong things which makes it seem as if Dzogchen isn't a complete path and lacks certain things, and so on, you're making a very big mistake. It is not good to do this.
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Re: Why do only very few practitioners attain rainbow body?

Postby Crazywisdom » Sat Jul 19, 2014 5:26 pm

smcj wrote:
This poor success rate for Westerners (0.000%) seems very disconcerting and leads to a lot of questions.

I disagree that the rainbow body phenomena is the the only validation to the mastery of Dzogchen realization, or any style/level of enlightenment.

furthermore, people making progress on the Path, evolving and maturing in a Dharma direction, is validation enough for me of the efficacy of the Path. The lower yanas are still Dharma. You guys make too much of a big thing about Dzogchen. It reminds me of the people that base their financial planning on winning the lottery. Better to get a job. You can still buy lottery tickets, just have a Plan B that is more assured to work.


Dzogchen is nothing like the lottery. Dzogchen is not reserved only for the mahasiddhas. If you listen, contemplate and practice the teachers words, you can have that realization in one life.
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Re: Why do only very few practitioners attain rainbow body?

Postby Malcolm » Sat Jul 19, 2014 5:26 pm

Crazywisdom wrote:
Dzogchen is nothing like the lottery. Dzogchen is not reserved only for the mahasiddhas. If you listen, contemplate and practice the teachers words, you can have that realization in one life.


:good:
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Re: Why do only very few practitioners attain rainbow body?

Postby uan » Sat Jul 19, 2014 5:37 pm

Hi Malcolm, I thought this thread would be a better place to follow up on a response you made (just so we don't go off topic on the Western Buddhist thread). I was hoping you could clarify a couple things.

Malcom wrote

uan wrote:

Based on that, is there a reason you would be presently incarnated here, rather than having attained rainbow body in the bardo or in a pure nirmanakāya buddhafield?



When you wake up in the bardo, you also generate emanations. Maybe I am one of those.


In terms of the rainbow body, whether it's attained at death or afterwards in the bardo/a pure nirmanakāya buddhafield, is that a mark that a practitioner has entered on the Bhumis or is it a mark that one has attained full Buddhahood? Does awaken mean realized or enlightened - and are those two terms describing different things or not? My understanding, which is likely to be incorrect, is that "realized" meant a person was at least on the 1st Bhumi, while "enlightened" would mean full Buddhahood. Your insight would be appreciated.
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Re: Why do only very few practitioners attain rainbow body?

Postby Malcolm » Sat Jul 19, 2014 7:01 pm

uan wrote:Hi Malcolm, I thought this thread would be a better place to follow up on a response you made (just so we don't go off topic on the Western Buddhist thread). I was hoping you could clarify a couple things.

Malcom wrote

uan wrote:

Based on that, is there a reason you would be presently incarnated here, rather than having attained rainbow body in the bardo or in a pure nirmanakāya buddhafield?



When you wake up in the bardo, you also generate emanations. Maybe I am one of those.


In terms of the rainbow body, whether it's attained at death or afterwards in the bardo/a pure nirmanakāya buddhafield, is that a mark that a practitioner has entered on the Bhumis or is it a mark that one has attained full Buddhahood? Does awaken mean realized or enlightened - and are those two terms describing different things or not? My understanding, which is likely to be incorrect, is that "realized" meant a person was at least on the 1st Bhumi, while "enlightened" would mean full Buddhahood. Your insight would be appreciated.



Generally, speaking here we mean buddhahood.
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
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Re: Why do only very few practitioners attain rainbow body?

Postby smcj » Sat Jul 19, 2014 9:00 pm

Firs I must apologize for the snarky attitude and language. That wasn't appropriate.

However having said that, I believe that the points that I was making were entirely in keeping with the traditional Nyingma approach to Dzogchen. I could be wrong in making that generalization for the school, but the small sampling of Nyingma lamas I have known would all approve of the points I have made, if not the style in which I made them. Not only would they approve, they would want their students to understand the proper approach to Dzogchen as predicated on those points.

In other words, I believe the points I was just making are general accepted as Nyingma orthodoxy (if such a thing isn't an oxymoron, the Nyingmpas being they way they are). But again, apologies for the snarky attitude.
Last edited by smcj on Sat Jul 19, 2014 9:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Why do only very few practitioners attain rainbow body?

Postby uan » Sat Jul 19, 2014 9:14 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Generally, speaking here we mean buddhahood.


Thanks Malcolm.
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Re: Why do only very few practitioners attain rainbow body?

Postby Malcolm » Sat Jul 19, 2014 9:53 pm

smcj wrote: I believe that the points that I was making were entirely in keeping with the traditional Nyingma approach to Dzogchen.


How would you know? Not all Nyingma teachers teach Dzogchen or have a deep understanding of Dzogchen, much less a deep practice of Dzogchen.
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
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Re: Why do only very few practitioners attain rainbow body?

Postby smcj » Sat Jul 19, 2014 11:01 pm

Malcolm wrote:
smcj wrote: I believe that the points that I was making were entirely in keeping with the traditional Nyingma approach to Dzogchen.

How would you know? Not all Nyingma teachers teach Dzogchen….

That's what I just said.
….or have a deep understanding of Dzogchen, much less a deep practice of Dzogchen.
(formatting mine)

That's way more controversial than what I just said, but also demonstrates my point. People reading this might want to contemplate that statement a minute or two.

********

However my other point I will claim not as a Nyingma perspective but as my own, which was my response to Zoom's post about the importance of seeing the phenomena of the rainbow body. Part of what he was talking about was wishing for validation of the teachings, to make them something more than stories and ideas, to make them something you can know you can rely on. To me the only miracle that counts is when someone changes and grows in a Dharma direction. That validates the teachings. Every other type of miracle can only be encouragement and support for people to make effort in that direction, nothing more.
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
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Re: Why do only very few practitioners attain rainbow body?

Postby Crazywisdom » Sun Jul 20, 2014 1:51 am

smcj wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
smcj wrote: I believe that the points that I was making were entirely in keeping with the traditional Nyingma approach to Dzogchen.

How would you know? Not all Nyingma teachers teach Dzogchen….

That's what I just said.
….or have a deep understanding of Dzogchen, much less a deep practice of Dzogchen.
(formatting mine)

That's way more controversial than what I just said, but also demonstrates my point. People reading this might want to contemplate that statement a minute or two.

********

However my other point I will claim not as a Nyingma perspective but as my own, which was my response to Zoom's post about the importance of seeing the phenomena of the rainbow body. Part of what he was talking about was wishing for validation of the teachings, to make them something more than stories and ideas, to make them something you can know you can rely on. To me the only miracle that counts is when someone changes and grows in a Dharma direction. That validates the teachings. Every other type of miracle can only be encouragement and support for people to make effort in that direction, nothing more.


Rainbow body is important for more than just validation. It helps more beings more than conventional appearance.
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Re: Why do only very few practitioners attain rainbow body?

Postby smcj » Sun Jul 20, 2014 3:37 am

Upon sober reflection I realize my participation here is contrary to my teacher's instructions to me. I need to take a break.

My apologies to all. Best wishes to everyone with a Dzogchen practice.
Last edited by smcj on Sun Jul 20, 2014 3:41 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Why do only very few practitioners attain rainbow body?

Postby Malcolm » Sun Jul 20, 2014 3:38 am

smcj wrote:Part of what he was talking about was wishing for validation of the teachings, to make them something more than stories and ideas, to make them something you can know you can rely on.


:soapbox:

The practice of Dzogchen has the ability to eradicate the two coarse obscurations [i.e. the obscurations of affliction and knowledge] even in ordinary practitioners below the path of seeing because it permits ordinary practitioners to encounter their real condition even though they are not what one would be normally considered "enlightened" [i.e. the path of seeing/the first bodhisattva stage and beyond].

The path of Dzogchen is really quite extraordinary precisely because of its benefits for normal, everyday people.

Of course, one still must continue to practice and attain awakening in order to deal with the two subtle obscurations which remain.
Last edited by Malcolm on Sun Jul 20, 2014 3:46 am, edited 3 times in total.
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
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Re: Why do only very few practitioners attain rainbow body?

Postby Malcolm » Sun Jul 20, 2014 3:39 am

smcj wrote:Upon sober reflection...


Well, I did ask you if you were high.
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
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