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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2010 1:01 pm 
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Aemilius wrote:
conebeckham wrote:
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Tulku Urgyen said that one can achieve enlightenment through practicing solely the completion stage, but not through solely practicing the creation stage


Which leads us to the conclusion that one does not need to be "awakened" prior to practicing the completion stage. I rest my case.


In the Tantra generally after initiation you should consider yourself as already enlightened. You "become enlightened" by maintaining this awareness (that you are enlightened), this is one explanation of the tantric method. It seems that most people can't really feel that they are enlightened though they have received tantric initiation. They still want to "become enlightened" although they have been told in the initiation that they are enlightened. Now they go so far that they start arguing by which means they could "become enlightened" !? -enlightened still or enlightened again ??


Yes, all beings are enlightened.
But can you handle your own negative emotions, difficulties in life and pain of sickness or death just by thinking 'I am enlightened, I am enlightened?' At least I know I can not.

In initiation we were introduced that we are pure from the beginning. We should keep that view in mind. But that actually doesn't influence our argue here. Thinking that our true nature is already enlightened is not cheating, it's the fact; but thinking that you don't need to follow the path step by step is cheating yourself.

Generation stage is also called 'stage of example'. The face, arms and objects you visualised are an example of your ture nature, but it's not the true nature. Why? because you visualised with your mind (sems), and real wisdom is beyond that. Generation stage is a good training to make you closer to the real situation; but just by creating a diety or a mandala by your mind won't directly lead you to real enlightenment.

To make it clearer: thinking yourself is enlightened won't make you really enlightened, because enlightenment is beyond thinking. Before one really experiences nature of mind, one can always say that his nature of mind is originally liberated etc, but that won't help him much.

If you only practice generation stage, you will still get siddhi, you will be able to be reborn in diety's pureland, or you might have chance to be liberated after you die. Still quite good.


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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2010 1:34 pm 
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What supports the view that Tantra is for those who are enlightened
is that through it you develop the Sambhogakaya and Nirmanakaya ( through the visualisation practices of the Utpattikrama), and the Dharmakaya ( through the practice of the Sampannakrama).

"Maintaining awareness" does not mean thinking, it means a special practice of mindfulness.

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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2010 5:02 pm 
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If you think that you are enlightened merely by receiving empowerment, you are either "one in a million" or you are deluded, simply put.

Perhaps we should clarify our terms, though. Enlightenment means Buddhahood, right?

Empowerment is the "Pointing Out" that which is primordially true. More specifically, the Four Empowerments point out that one's Body, Speech, and Mind (and often, Qualities and Activity, as well) are of the nature of the deity's body, speech and mind, etc.. But if it were the case that everyone receiving empowerment were enlightened, there would be no need for practice, retreat, samayas, etc.

Just because we are primordially of the same essence as Buddha does not mean we are Buddha. Empowerment is like planting the seed, or, more properly, like showing that you already have the seed. Practice of the two stages is like watering the seed, fertilizing the seed, providing the seed with warmth and also with light-so the seed moves forward in reaching it's potential as a plant. Enlightenment is like the fruit of that plant.


Quote:
What supports the view that Tantra is for those who are enlightened
is that through it you develop the Sambhogakaya and Nirmanakaya ( through the visualisation practices of the Utpattikrama), and the Dharmakaya ( through the practice of the Sampannakrama).


This makes no sense--for example, if Tantra is "for those who are enlightened," then why would they need to "develop" anything? You are contradicting yourself. Also, from one point of view, it can be said that one develops the Nirmanakaya from practicing Creation Stage, it's really the case that the Four Bodies of the Buddha are primordially inseperable. In fact, one can't really "complete" the Creation Stage without "completing" or bringing to fruition the Completion Stage. In the conxtext of the Sarma teachings, at least, the Sambhogakaya and Nirmanakaya are "Caused" (or brought to fruition) by the practices of Tummo and Illusory Body, primarily, and by Dream practice, and in this very lifetime, at best, or at the time of death. The Dharmakaya is brought to fruition, primarily, by the Clear Light practice, and by the Mahamudra of the Tantric Path. This can also occur during this very life, at best, or at the time of Death. In any case, "effort" is involved, and something more than just an "awareness" which is not thinking as you point out.

The "Awareness without Thinking" you are referring to is certainly part of "method," or skillful means, as are the practices discussed above. It's also, perhaps, the "Example Wisdom" which is introduced or revealed during empowerment. But these methods require effort, and not "mere remembering" of what is pointed out during empowerment.

This is why Magnus and I (and everyone else, it seems) take issue with your initial assertion that "Tantra is for enlightened beings," or your implication that one must "Be awakened" by Creation Stage practice prior to entering into Completion Stage practice. These assertions and implications are simply not true.

Whether one views Creation and Completion as a gradual path, as is taught in some contexts, or whether one views them as an indivisible unity, as is taught in other contexts, doesn't matter. In both cases, both stages are practiced "together," in dependence on each other. In fact, the real "Fruition" of the Creation Stage, which concerns Appearance/Emptiness Primordially Inseperable, and which also concerns the Primordial 5 Wisdoms, the Essential Nature of the 5 elements and 5 Skandhas, the Five Buddha Families, can only be completely realized by successful experience of the Completion Stages, both with and without signs--those practices relating to the 3 latter empowerments--the Secret, Wisdom, and Word Empowerments. So how can it be said that one must be enlightened by the Creation Stage when one cannot perfect the Creation Stage without the Completion Stage?

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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 25, 2010 11:07 am 
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If you claim to understand what happens in an initiation, you claim to posses the divine eye, the dharma, the wisdom eye, or the buddha eye,... otherwise simply put, maybe you don't know?

Just to clarify the terms, enlightenment is a process. In the beginning, as Ven. Kalu Rimpoche has described it, it is like the new moon, very thin and barely visible, then it grows gradually bigger, until it reaches its fulness, which is Buddhahood. These stages of are described in a number of ways,
like the stream-entrer, once-returner, non-returner and arhat of the Hinayana,
or the Ten Oxherding pictures of the Zen,
or the Five paths and Ten Bhumis of the Mahayana and the Tantra, and so on...

Are you familiar with the meaning of the Sambhogakaya and Nirmanakaya (and Dharmakaya) in the Mahayana, (of which Tantra is a branch or a continuation)?

It is ofcourse excellent if you succeed in manifesting a Sambhogakaya and Nirmanakaya (and Dharmakaya) as a result of your practice in this lifetime, no fault in that!

conebeckham wrote:
If you think that you are enlightened merely by receiving empowerment, you are either "one in a million" or you are deluded, simply put.

Perhaps we should clarify our terms, though. Enlightenment means Buddhahood, right?

Empowerment is the "Pointing Out" that which is primordially true. More specifically, the Four Empowerments point out that one's Body, Speech, and Mind (and often, Qualities and Activity, as well) are of the nature of the deity's body, speech and mind, etc.. But if it were the case that everyone receiving empowerment were enlightened, there would be no need for practice, retreat, samayas, etc.

Just because we are primordially of the same essence as Buddha does not mean we are Buddha. Empowerment is like planting the seed, or, more properly, like showing that you already have the seed. Practice of the two stages is like watering the seed, fertilizing the seed, providing the seed with warmth and also with light-so the seed moves forward in reaching it's potential as a plant. Enlightenment is like the fruit of that plant.


Quote:
What supports the view that Tantra is for those who are enlightened
is that through it you develop the Sambhogakaya and Nirmanakaya ( through the visualisation practices of the Utpattikrama), and the Dharmakaya ( through the practice of the Sampannakrama).


This makes no sense--for example, if Tantra is "for those who are enlightened," then why would they need to "develop" anything? You are contradicting yourself. Also, from one point of view, it can be said that one develops the Nirmanakaya from practicing Creation Stage, it's really the case that the Four Bodies of the Buddha are primordially inseperable. In fact, one can't really "complete" the Creation Stage without "completing" or bringing to fruition the Completion Stage. In the conxtext of the Sarma teachings, at least, the Sambhogakaya and Nirmanakaya are "Caused" (or brought to fruition) by the practices of Tummo and Illusory Body, primarily, and by Dream practice, and in this very lifetime, at best, or at the time of death. The Dharmakaya is brought to fruition, primarily, by the Clear Light practice, and by the Mahamudra of the Tantric Path. This can also occur during this very life, at best, or at the time of Death. In any case, "effort" is involved, and something more than just an "awareness" which is not thinking as you point out.

The "Awareness without Thinking" you are referring to is certainly part of "method," or skillful means, as are the practices discussed above. It's also, perhaps, the "Example Wisdom" which is introduced or revealed during empowerment. But these methods require effort, and not "mere remembering" of what is pointed out during empowerment.

This is why Magnus and I (and everyone else, it seems) take issue with your initial assertion that "Tantra is for enlightened beings," or your implication that one must "Be awakened" by Creation Stage practice prior to entering into Completion Stage practice. These assertions and implications are simply not true.

Whether one views Creation and Completion as a gradual path, as is taught in some contexts, or whether one views them as an indivisible unity, as is taught in other contexts, doesn't matter. In both cases, both stages are practiced "together," in dependence on each other. In fact, the real "Fruition" of the Creation Stage, which concerns Appearance/Emptiness Primordially Inseperable, and which also concerns the Primordial 5 Wisdoms, the Essential Nature of the 5 elements and 5 Skandhas, the Five Buddha Families, can only be completely realized by successful experience of the Completion Stages, both with and without signs--those practices relating to the 3 latter empowerments--the Secret, Wisdom, and Word Empowerments. So how can it be said that one must be enlightened by the Creation Stage when one cannot perfect the Creation Stage without the Completion Stage?

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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 2:42 pm 
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Pero wrote:
conebeckham wrote:
...
Perhaps what you're getting at is the "perfection" of those stages...for example, a person who had perfected the Generation Stage would likely be at a pretty advanced place......but I'm not sure such "perfection" can be accomplished without a corresponding practice or experience of Completion Stage. ...


Tulku Urgyen said that one can achieve enlightenment through practicing solely the completion stage, but not through solely practicing the creation stage.

As for the bhumis being connected to the 4 yogas of Mahamudra, if that were so, then even non-buddhist practitioners would be one the 1st bhumi after mastering shine. I find it hard to believe that.



Tulku Urgyen has then been teaching the view in which the creation stage is equivalent to samatha and perfection stage equals vipashyana.

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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 4:35 pm 
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Quote:
Just to clarify the terms, enlightenment is a process. In the beginning, as Ven. Kalu Rimpoche has described it, it is like the new moon, very thin and barely visible, then it grows gradually bigger, until it reaches its fulness, which is Buddhahood. These stages of are described in a number of ways,
like the stream-entrer, once-returner, non-returner and arhat of the Hinayana,
or the Ten Oxherding pictures of the Zen,
or the Five paths and Ten Bhumis of the Mahayana and the Tantra, and so on...


Aemilius, I think it's just a difference in how we use the terminology. Obtaining "Pointing Out Instructions"-and really GETTING them, not merely hearing them, having a glimpse of the view, is surely an amazing thing. But it's not Buddhahood. It may a KIND of "awakening," but it is not the complete Enlightenment of a Buddha. One needs to practice. When we're talking about Creation and Completion, the Two Stages, they go together. Even if we're talking about Mahamudra or Dzokchen without the Two Stages, as such paths do exist, there's still a need to practice. You and I agree it's a "gradual process," but where we differ is perhaps in what we term "awakening."

The 3 Kayas are primordially inseperable. Kinda like the Two Stages of Tantric Deity Yoga. But I think all this conceptual discussion is not useful at this point. Intellectual understanding of these things is like a "patch"--it will wear away or fall off eventually. Better to practice.

Best wishes.

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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 5:03 pm 
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Aemilius wrote:
Pero wrote:
conebeckham wrote:
...
Perhaps what you're getting at is the "perfection" of those stages...for example, a person who had perfected the Generation Stage would likely be at a pretty advanced place......but I'm not sure such "perfection" can be accomplished without a corresponding practice or experience of Completion Stage. ...


Tulku Urgyen said that one can achieve enlightenment through practicing solely the completion stage, but not through solely practicing the creation stage.

As for the bhumis being connected to the 4 yogas of Mahamudra, if that were so, then even non-buddhist practitioners would be one the 1st bhumi after mastering shine. I find it hard to believe that.



Tulku Urgyen has then been teaching the view in which the creation stage is equivalent to samatha and perfection stage equals vipashyana.


That is not true. I have read many unpublished teachings of Tulku Urgyen and he always teach development stage in the context of the three samadhis. The first samadhi, the samadhi of suchness, he says, if you have recognized the nature of mind, is equal to rigpa. For this reason the whole development stage arise from rigpa with the deity and the mandala arising as the expression of awareness. This is off course not easy but according to Tulku Urgyen this is the proper way to practice the development stage. Just pretending to be a deity is not much of a development stage.

/magnus

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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 12:13 am 
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I agree with Magnus. Tulku Urgyen clearly indicates that the Creation Stage is to be practiced from the POV of Rigpa. Aemilius, I don't know where you are getting your information, or if you'e just speculating. I'm not even sure you're consistent in your assertions.

Here, for you, is a quote from Tulku Urgyen's book, "Vajra Heart," which I hesitate to quote from, but I think this particular quote isn't "restricted."

"The expression of the spontaneously present nature from the essence of primordial purity has existed since the beginning, so development and completion stage should be practiced as a unity." (p.63).

If one understands what Samatha and Vipassana are, then one clearly understands that Tulku Urgyen is stating that development stage MUST be practiced from the POV of Vipassana...actually, we could say from the union of samatha and Vipassana.
Further, this quote directly contradicts any assertion that one must first "achieve awakening" in creation stage prior to practicing completion stage.

You could say, in this instance, that "awakening" means knowing what "the expression of the spontaneously present nature from the essence of primordial purity" is........in that sense, I would agree that if you don't have an experiential understanding of that, you can't really follow Rinpoche's instructions. But I personally do not call such an experience "awakening." This may be a semantic difference, or it may be something more. I can't tell.

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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 2:18 pm 
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For Magnus and C. Beckham

I hope I'm not adding to the already existing mass of confusion. There are several problems that you have brought out, like what mr C-Beckham says: It is common to insist that everyone is on the level of a beginner, i.e. nobody is enlightened. Then on the other hand you demand that your practice of Tantra is to be called vipashyana, which leads to a contradiction. If you really practice vipashyana (or the three samadhis that are called Three Doors to Liberation) you are enlightened ! Then if one approaches the subject (of meditation in the tantra) realistically and assumes that most people are really just approaching the stages of samatha, then you immediately take immense offence!

Just for the record: There is samatha with a pure object, that is when your object of concentration is the visualized body of Avalokiteshvara, or Buddha Amitayus, or another Buddha/Bodhisattva. To me it seems clear that Urgyen Tulku has been refering to this level of practice, ( in what Pero quoted).

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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 2:41 pm 
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Aemilius wrote:
For Magnus and C. Beckham

I hope I'm not adding to the already existing mass of confusion. There are several problems that you have brought out, like what mr C-Beckham says: It is common to insist that everyone is on the level of a beginner, i.e. nobody is enlightened. Then on the other hand you demand that your practice of Tantra is to be called vipashyana, which leads to a contradiction. If you really practice vipashyana (or the three samadhis that are called Three Doors to Liberation) you are enlightened ! Then if one approaches the subject (of meditation in the tantra) realistically and assumes that most people are really just approaching the stages of samatha, then you immediately take immense offence!

Just for the record: There is samatha with a pure object, that is when your object of concentration is the visualized body of Avalokiteshvara, or Buddha Amitayus, or another Buddha/Bodhisattva. To me it seems clear that Urgyen Tulku has been refering to this level of practice, ( in what Pero quoted).


No Aemilius I don't take offense for anything you write but I can't just agree if I think you got it wrong. Anyway I have no idea how "most people" practice I just try to say what I understood from my teacher. You should read about the three samadhis. It is a particular instruction from the Nyingma Tantras. I think it is all in "As it is volume 1". Other recommended books on the three samdhis is "Deity, Mantra and Wisdom: Development Stage Meditation in Tibetan Buddhist Tantra" and "Light of Wisdom Volume II"

/magnus

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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 3:18 pm 
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Aemilius wrote:
For Magnus and C. Beckham

I hope I'm not adding to the already existing mass of confusion. There are several problems that you have brought out, like what mr C-Beckham says: It is common to insist that everyone is on the level of a beginner, i.e. nobody is enlightened. Then on the other hand you demand that your practice of Tantra is to be called vipashyana, which leads to a contradiction. If you really practice vipashyana (or the three samadhis that are called Three Doors to Liberation) you are enlightened ! Then if one approaches the subject (of meditation in the tantra) realistically and assumes that most people are really just approaching the stages of samatha, then you immediately take immense offence!

Just for the record: There is samatha with a pure object, that is when your object of concentration is the visualized body of Avalokiteshvara, or Buddha Amitayus, or another Buddha/Bodhisattva. To me it seems clear that Urgyen Tulku has been refering to this level of practice, ( in what Pero quoted).


Aemillius, if one is still "practicing vipashyana" then one is very obviously not enlightened. If the utterly effortless, utterly nonconceptual view of vipashyana is one's natural and continual reality no matter what one does or what happens, and one is forever effortlessly free of distraction, THEN one is enlightened. Not before.

To state again clearly, if you are introduced to your true nature and recognize it directly, nonconceptually, but the causes for duality thought are not immediately exhausted, then you are not enlightened. You're ridiculously fortunate to have even recognized your nature, but you're not enlightened.

Also, if one is practicing the generation stage without maintaining the view of the completion stage from beginning to end - at the very least conceptually - then one is not even practicing the generation stage, one is just seizing onto some fancy but solid self-conception and creating the causes to be reborn as some sort of deva or demon. This is why if one wants to practice the two stages according to the inner tantras, it's important to receive both instructions and empowerment, through which one is brought to understand through personal experience (or the seed for eventual experience) how the deity arises from the natural state, is always within that state, and dissolves back into that state. This is also the proper sequence of sadhana practice for the generation stage. Realistically speaking, one also should have a solid understanding of emptiness from the Madhyamaka teachings too, and experience contemplating and meditating on that so one can at least have the understanding of emptiness to build on when one goes on to receive empowerment.

Honestly, it's wonderful that you're interested in this Dharma, but you need to study this level of teaching under a lama's guidance. Otherwise, it's possible (and practically inevitable) to interpret what you read in all kinds of unintended ways. It would truly be a shame to have your devotion and interest lead you to misunderstand the very teachings that should be clearing up all misunderstandings and setting you free.


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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 3:31 pm 
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Aemilius wrote:
I hope I'm not adding to the already existing mass of confusion.


By not understanding your sources and by making wrong assumptions, this is exactly what you are doing actually.

Quote:
If you really practice vipashyana (...) you are enlightened !


This is non-sense. Vipashyana is a means, not an end in itself. You can practice it without being enlightened.

Quote:
(or the three samadhis that are called Three Doors to Liberation)


It is clear you either don't understand what Magnus told you about the three samadhis or you don't know what these are about. I'm sorry to sound rude but you're really misleading readers with your posts. Get a teacher, get a training from him and avoid misunderstanding by quitting wrong assumptions.


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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 4:44 pm 
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I agree completely with the presentation by Pema Rigdzin, above. And with Magnus's recommendations. I can't add a thing-- they have done their best to dispel confusion.

By the way, getting back on topic -- :smile: --we've agreed that Rainbow Body is a fruition, correct? Or, rather, a sign of fruition?

It struck me last night that perhaps the "why?" of it all is......to instill devotion and confidence. In the same way Sakyamuni demonstrated death as a reminder of impermanence, perhaps great masters who demonstrate the Rainbow Body do so from a wish to benefit us by causing an increase in confidence and devotion.

Just some thoughts....

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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 5:15 pm 
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conebeckham wrote:
Or, rather, a sign of fruition?


You're right it's a sign.


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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Fri Oct 01, 2010 12:37 pm 
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heart wrote:
Aemilius wrote:
For Magnus and C. Beckham

I hope I'm not adding to the already existing mass of confusion. There are several problems that you have brought out, like what mr C-Beckham says: It is common to insist that everyone is on the level of a beginner, i.e. nobody is enlightened. Then on the other hand you demand that your practice of Tantra is to be called vipashyana, which leads to a contradiction. If you really practice vipashyana (or the three samadhis that are called Three Doors to Liberation) you are enlightened ! Then if one approaches the subject (of meditation in the tantra) realistically and assumes that most people are really just approaching the stages of samatha, then you immediately take immense offence!

Just for the record: There is samatha with a pure object, that is when your object of concentration is the visualized body of Avalokiteshvara, or Buddha Amitayus, or another Buddha/Bodhisattva. To me it seems clear that Urgyen Tulku has been refering to this level of practice, ( in what Pero quoted).


No Aemilius I don't take offense for anything you write but I can't just agree if I think you got it wrong. Anyway I have no idea how "most people" practice I just try to say what I understood from my teacher. You should read about the three samadhis. It is a particular instruction from the Nyingma Tantras. I think it is all in "As it is volume 1". Other recommended books on the three samdhis is "Deity, Mantra and Wisdom: Development Stage Meditation in Tibetan Buddhist Tantra" and "Light of Wisdom Volume II"

/magnus


This has been a recurring theme on many occasions & with many teachers, over a longer period of time, one doesn't want to be boring by repeating the same stuff again and again. It is fine if you can do what you say, i.e. practice the three samadhis, congratulations for that ! And if everyone else in the Nyingma does likewise, it is more than wonderful !

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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Fri Oct 01, 2010 5:34 pm 
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Aemilius wrote:
heart wrote:
Aemilius wrote:
For Magnus and C. Beckham

I hope I'm not adding to the already existing mass of confusion. There are several problems that you have brought out, like what mr C-Beckham says: It is common to insist that everyone is on the level of a beginner, i.e. nobody is enlightened. Then on the other hand you demand that your practice of Tantra is to be called vipashyana, which leads to a contradiction. If you really practice vipashyana (or the three samadhis that are called Three Doors to Liberation) you are enlightened ! Then if one approaches the subject (of meditation in the tantra) realistically and assumes that most people are really just approaching the stages of samatha, then you immediately take immense offence!

Just for the record: There is samatha with a pure object, that is when your object of concentration is the visualized body of Avalokiteshvara, or Buddha Amitayus, or another Buddha/Bodhisattva. To me it seems clear that Urgyen Tulku has been refering to this level of practice, ( in what Pero quoted).


No Aemilius I don't take offense for anything you write but I can't just agree if I think you got it wrong. Anyway I have no idea how "most people" practice I just try to say what I understood from my teacher. You should read about the three samadhis. It is a particular instruction from the Nyingma Tantras. I think it is all in "As it is volume 1". Other recommended books on the three samdhis is "Deity, Mantra and Wisdom: Development Stage Meditation in Tibetan Buddhist Tantra" and "Light of Wisdom Volume II"

/magnus


This has been a recurring theme on many occasions & with many teachers, over a longer period of time, one doesn't want to be boring by repeating the same stuff again and again. It is fine if you can do what you say, i.e. practice the three samadhis, congratulations for that ! And if everyone else in the Nyingma does likewise, it is more than wonderful !


I am not talking about my own practice here. I am talking about how the development stage is practiced in the Nyingma.

/magnus

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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Fri Oct 01, 2010 8:58 pm 
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mr C-Beckham says: It is common to insist that everyone is on the level of a beginner, i.e. nobody is enlightened. Then on the other hand you demand that your practice of Tantra is to be called vipashyana, which leads to a contradiction. If you really practice vipashyana (or the three samadhis that are called Three Doors to Liberation) you are enlightened ! Then if one approaches the subject (of meditation in the tantra) realistically and assumes that most people are really just approaching the stages of samatha, then you immediately take immense offence!


I feel I have to say something else, after all...

I never insisted everyone is on the beginning level. I have no idea what anyone's "level" is. But I have been taught that, for beginners such as myself, the Two Stages are aspirational. At the same time, the underlying basis is connate Appearance/Emptiness, or connate Bliss/Emptiness, since beginningless time. Aemilius, my teacher has taught me the Two Stages, and believe me, he knows I'm not enlightened! That fact, in and of itself, would seem to disprove your assertion.

If we say that "most people are really just approaching the stages of samatha," (which I'm not sure anyone really said!) we're making assumptions again. The Two Stages can be viewed from the POV of samatha--peaceful abiding on visualization, on sound, on emptiness, on awareness....many different ways of "focus" are available, and therefore we should understand that The Two Stages includes samatha practice. It's also true that is surpasses mere samatha, or has the possibility of doing so for most practitioners--this is one of it's virtues, in fact!

It is taught that Vipassana/Vipashyana relies on samatha. In most non-tantric traditions, it's taught or engaged in only after students have some stability in samatha. But there's no requirement, anywhere, from any teacher I've ever heard of or met, that one "perfects" samatha, or, even more extreme, that one is enlightened prior to practicing Vipashyana. This is true in the traditions that are not "tantric"-Sutra-based Mahayana, and Theravada, and in the paths of Mahamudra and Dzokchen as well.

In the practice of the Two Stages, from the Nyingma POV as I understand it, the Three Samadhis "embrace" the practice-however, mindfulness is necessary until one is able to remain in Rigpa. But if one has been introduced to Rigpa, then both mindfulness (samatha) and abiding for moments in Rigpa ( a sort of Vipashyana) are possible when one is practicing the Two Stages. Until one attains a real stability, there is alternation, and some effort, etc. is required. So obviously we can see that Samatha and Vipashyana are both present in the Two Stages, and that there is no "requirement" to be enlightened to practice! Of course, one needs to have recognized Rigpa to understand abiding--but there's a difference between recognizing Rigpa and abiding with stability.

In Sarma systems, samatha and vipashyana are also included as aspects of the two stages.....in particular, the completion stage with signs is geared toward engendering a blissful mind which is used to facilitate recognition of emptiness/awareness, Mahamudra. That is vipashyana. In the creation stage, the awareness/emptiness aspect of the visualization is vipashyana, as well. The mind that meditates on this vipashyana aspect is not the enlightenment of Buddhahood, per se.

So I continue to contend that it is not necessary to be enlightened in order to practice the Two Stages, whether creation or completion, and whether one is practicing sadhanas from the Nyingma or Sarma traditions. Great teachers have said, however, that one isn't REALLY practicing the two stages unless and until one has a glimpse of Rigpa, or "Ordinary Mind" to use a Mahamudra term--but this shouldn't be misunderstood to mean one must abide in order to practice Tantra.

Perhaps we should start a different thread to discuss the differences between "a glimpse" and "abiding" as those are HUGE topics.

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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 1:22 pm 
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heart wrote:
I am not talking about my own practice here. I am talking about how the development stage is practiced in the Nyingma.

/magnus


So, are you saying that all of the Nyingma are practicing the three samadhis ? Do you not count yourself as belonging to the Nyingma ? Are you not also saying that those who recite the texts without the attainment of the three samadhis are not Nyingma ? Possibly there is then something before the development stage in the Nyingma, what is it called ? Or in the Pre-Nyingma?

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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 2:34 pm 
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I just realized what I missed in this one sane and boring year without e-sangha! :tongue:
you can never have these kind of arguments with Dharmafriends in the real world, everybody would just feel totally ridiculous.
And yes the three Samadhis are a concept used in nearly all Nyingma Sadhanas( even though they are not always explecitly mentioned).


Best

Tashi


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 Post subject: Re: Rainbow Body - Why?
PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 4:38 pm 
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Aemilius wrote:
heart wrote:
I am not talking about my own practice here. I am talking about how the development stage is practiced in the Nyingma.

/magnus


So, are you saying that all of the Nyingma are practicing the three samadhis ? Do you not count yourself as belonging to the Nyingma ? Are you not also saying that those who recite the texts without the attainment of the three samadhis are not Nyingma ? Possibly there is then something before the development stage in the Nyingma, what is it called ? Or in the Pre-Nyingma?


I just wanted to make it clear that I wasn't discussing my personal practice and my own experiences in meditation but that my discussion is based on what I generally been taught by many teachers and read in many books. I personally count myself as Chökyi Nyima Rinpoches student not as member of any particular lineage. But yes, I do practice the three samadhis. If you have "attainment of the three samadhis" you are a very excellent practitioner indeed. I never said that someone that don't "attainment of the three samadhis are not a Nyingma", I don't know where you got that from? I said that the three samadhis is the framework for the development stage in all sadhanas in the Nyingma. I would like to add on second thought that this is just true for the inner tantras.

/magnus

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