Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

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Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby tamdrin » Mon Mar 07, 2011 8:22 pm

I happened across this text, by Tsongkhapa where he praises the view of the Great Perfection and he says that this with the practice of the Six Yogas of Naropa is the supreme way to proceed. It is a very interesting text!

http://www.scribd.com/doc/24337291/Je-T ... ctars-1396

Enjoy,
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby Tsongkhapafan » Mon Mar 07, 2011 11:06 pm

It's unlikely that Tsongkhapa was referring to Dzogchen as he never taught Dzogchen. There may be many meanings to the term 'Great Perfection'. Tsongkhapa says 'Great perfection, the extraordinary instruction of the Tantra', so Great Perfection may refer to the practice of Generation and Completion Stage.

Later, Vajrapani says:

"The Great Perfection is an exalted view, and also the elucidation of the view by Masters Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti is without error. It is impossible to generate transcendent insight without relying on them.

In this context, 'Great Perfection' may refer to the Perfection of Wisdom, the view of the ultimate nature of phenomena, especially as expounded by Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti which nowadays is referred to as the Madhyamika Prasangika view, so there are many different interpretations possible. Has anyone received a commentary on this text? that's the clincher.
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby conebeckham » Mon Mar 07, 2011 11:22 pm

TsongKhapaFan-

There are some indications that TsongKhapa did, in fact, teach Dzokchen, though not publically.

As for this particular text, it was written by TsongKhapa's Dzokchen Master, Namkha Gyaltsen, also known as Lodrak Drupchen Lekyi Dorje. It was written in response to questions posed by TsongKhapa. It definitely refers to Dzokchen, or Great Perfection--this can be inferred in the text, where it enumerates the three systems of of Mahamudra, Dzokchen, and Madhyamika.
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby tamdrin » Mon Mar 07, 2011 11:31 pm

It seems to me that he is referring to the view of the great perfection as it is commonly understood amongst Nyingma and Kagyu circles... At the beginning of the text we find reference to the adi-Buddha Samatabhadra.. and his consort Samantabhadri ""Karmavajra! Bring these esoteric words of mine to the ear of Matibhadrashri! It is the
intimation of Father Samantabhadra, the heart's message of Mother Samantabhadri - this
esoteric speech of mine, I Vajradhara! To achieve the great supreme medicine, the
uttermost pinnacle of all vehicles, seek out the clear light of the mind itself!"


That is Vajradhara is questioning them in response to inquiry into the ultimate clear-light mind.

This is also very similiar to Dzogchen ideas...

"The Lord of the Esoteric said, "Karmavajra! This emptiness, the actuality of awareness, is not contrived by anyone,
has no cause, no condition, but has been there from before the very beginning. It has no
infraction or observance, it cannot be focussed on or mistaken - it is Buddhahood in the
realm of primal perfection. Likewise, this natural clear light is effortlessly indivisible
from beginningless emptiness. Its exercise is ceaseless compassion. Whatever arises
kacks intrinsically real status, so you must understand all three as the great integration,
Buddhahood in indivisibility"



Also critical of a mere intellectual approach..
"partiality.

•First, the pitfall of view itself : the yogi in this esoteric Tantric system prefers naked direct perception to the view generally taught, accepted as emptiness devoid of
extremes. But there is no difference between those two if the ultimate is realized. If it
is not realized, then the general view is a verbal view held in the analytic mind and
does not hit upon the actual import; it is an erroneous view. Not trusting in the view
which is direct perception, but placing confidence in the verbal, analytic view, one
thinks that there is nothing to aim at, and that freedom from extremes is inactivity


n that and uncontrived primordial awareness is spoken of..
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby tamdrin » Mon Mar 07, 2011 11:32 pm

from the footnote of the teaching..

"Here it is to be stated that in general there are many forms of correct interpretation of
the Great Adepts' deeds and instructions. Likewise, among the revelations of this Holy
Master, in the context of the view there are three different systems of interpretation: one
according to the Great Seal; one according to the Great Central Way; and one according
to the Great Perfection. Each has a definite intention according to the (needs of) the
disciples. Especially, this Supremely Healing Nectar is the best instruction given to
Master Tsong Khapa himself. Even the Dakinis said "The Supremely Healing Nectar is"

the Supreme Medicine." And Tsong Khapa himself said that "The secret speech of Holy Vajrapani, free of faults of excess, omission, and error - that is the Supremely Healing Nectar." He often praised it in this way.
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby narraboth » Tue Mar 08, 2011 2:02 pm

agree with conebeck and tamdrin.

If it doesn't mean Dzogchen--as a supreme path usually practiced in Nyingma, the text would look very strange, comparing two known terms and one new undefined term which no one knows what it really means.
It can only be reasonable when it means (nyingma) dzogchen path.

Dzogchen masters do not look down upon Nagajurna/chandrakirti's view; it's explained in Ju Minpham's works. Many masters have indicated that they are actually not two unrelated views.

Tsongkhapa himself shows how a great master is always open-minded to dharma.
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby Josef » Tue Mar 08, 2011 3:58 pm

The very reason Je Rinpoche was a revolutionary figure in the world of Tibetan Buddhism is that he studied and integrated the teachings from the already extant lineages, including the Nyingma/Dzogchen.
Its too bad so many have abandoned his spirit of diversity and non-sectarian exploration.
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby heart » Tue Mar 08, 2011 9:51 pm

Nangwa wrote:The very reason Je Rinpoche was a revolutionary figure in the world of Tibetan Buddhism is that he studied and integrated the teachings from the already extant lineages, including the Nyingma/Dzogchen.
Its too bad so many have abandoned his spirit of diversity and non-sectarian exploration.


That's sad indeed.

/magnus
"To reject practice by saying, 'it is conceptual!' is the path of fools. A tendency of the inexperienced and something to be avoided."
- Longchenpa
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby Tsongkhapafan » Tue Mar 08, 2011 10:49 pm

narraboth wrote:Dzogchen masters do not look down upon Nagajurna/chandrakirti's view; it's explained in Ju Minpham's works. Many masters have indicated that they are actually not two unrelated views.


Ju Mipham sided with Gorampa and interpreted Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti's works incorrectly. For Dzogchen to work, it would have to be based on the correct interpretation of Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti as explained by Shantideva, Atisha and Je Tsongkhapa.
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby conebeckham » Tue Mar 08, 2011 10:58 pm

So say you. :shrug:
Plenty of masters whose realization is revered say otherwise.

And--after all--you're in the Dzokchen forum, which would likely predispose participants in a certain way.

You may not believe this, Tsong Khapa Fan, but Tsong Khapa's "interpretation" of Chandrakirti, and Madhyamika, is viewed as "unsual" if not "problematic" by the majority of Tibetan masters.

(Edited, because of prior poor word choice.....)
Last edited by conebeckham on Wed Mar 09, 2011 2:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby Astus » Tue Mar 08, 2011 11:05 pm

I'd say that for Dzogchen to work it should be based on non-conceptual wisdom. Mipham, Tsongkhapa, Gorampa, Nagarjuna - these great teachers gave conceptual methods, which is all right as far as they are applied.
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T2076p461b24-26)
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby conebeckham » Tue Mar 08, 2011 11:17 pm

Well...
Ju Mipham, certainly, and I believe Gorampa as well, did not obviate Nonconceptual wisdom. I don't believe Tsong Khapa did either. But I think it is Tsong Khapa and his followers alone who claimed that Ultimate Realization can be an object of knowledge to a conceptual mind.
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby Tsongkhapafan » Tue Mar 08, 2011 11:50 pm

conebeckham wrote:Well...
Ju Mipham, certainly, and I believe Gorampa as well, did not obviate Nonconceptual wisdom. I don't believe Tsong Khapa did either. But I think it is Tsong Khapa and his followers alone who claimed that Ultimate Realization can be an object of knowledge to a conceptual mind.


conebeckham,

Yes, the ultimate realization can be an object of knowledge to a conceptual mind, and that's how it has to start. It begins with inferential cognition but later it becomes direct, non-conceptual wisdom through familiarity, so there's no contradiction.
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby conebeckham » Wed Mar 09, 2011 12:00 am

Dzokchen says otherwise, TsongKhapa fan.
In fact, most Masters say otherwise. Instead of quoting Dzokchen masters, I'll go with some of those favored by Madhyamika adherents.....
Bhavavikika, for example:
Since [true reality] is without discursiveness, it is peace. Since it is peace, it is the sphere of nonconceptual wisdom. Since it is the sphere of nonconceptual wisdom, it cannot be known through something else. Since words do not apply to that which cannot be known through something other [than this wisdom], the very nature of true reality is perfectly beyond the superimpositions of words.


Chandrakirti says:
Views do not exist, something to be meditated on does not exist,
Conduct does not exist, and results do not exist:
The actuality of this is what is to be cultivated.
Let this mind free from thoughts rest in its own peace.

Without identifying something, without being distracted,
Without characteristics, and luminous— thus meditate.


And also, from the Prasannapada:
The ultimate is not known due to something other. It is peace. It is what the noble ones are aware of as that which is to be personally experienced [by them]. . . . This is not consciousness.
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby Josef » Wed Mar 09, 2011 1:17 am

Tsongkhapafan wrote:
narraboth wrote:Dzogchen masters do not look down upon Nagajurna/chandrakirti's view; it's explained in Ju Minpham's works. Many masters have indicated that they are actually not two unrelated views.


Ju Mipham sided with Gorampa and interpreted Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti's works incorrectly. For Dzogchen to work, it would have to be based on the correct interpretation of Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti as explained by Shantideva, Atisha and Je Tsongkhapa.

Nonsense.
The view that is in the minority on the interpretation of Nagarjuna and Chadrakirti is most definitely Tsongkhapa's.
Gorampa's refutation of Tsongkhapa in Freedom From Extremes is devastating. No wonder the Gelug political authority of central Tibet had the text banned.
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby Josef » Wed Mar 09, 2011 1:18 am

Tsongkhapafan wrote:
conebeckham wrote:Well...
Ju Mipham, certainly, and I believe Gorampa as well, did not obviate Nonconceptual wisdom. I don't believe Tsong Khapa did either. But I think it is Tsong Khapa and his followers alone who claimed that Ultimate Realization can be an object of knowledge to a conceptual mind.


conebeckham,

Yes, the ultimate realization can be an object of knowledge to a conceptual mind, and that's how it has to start. It begins with inferential cognition but later it becomes direct, non-conceptual wisdom through familiarity, so there's no contradiction.

Nonsense again.
Read the original texts and you will find that this interpretation is unorthodox at the very least.
That doesn't necessarily diminish its effectiveness for individuals of certain leanings etc. but to assert that it is an absolute goes way too far.
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby Tsongkhapafan » Wed Mar 09, 2011 2:41 am

Nangwa wrote:
Tsongkhapafan wrote:
narraboth wrote:Dzogchen masters do not look down upon Nagajurna/chandrakirti's view; it's explained in Ju Minpham's works. Many masters have indicated that they are actually not two unrelated views.


Ju Mipham sided with Gorampa and interpreted Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti's works incorrectly. For Dzogchen to work, it would have to be based on the correct interpretation of Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti as explained by Shantideva, Atisha and Je Tsongkhapa.

Nonsense.
The view that is in the minority on the interpretation of Nagarjuna and Chadrakirti is most definitely Tsongkhapa's.
Gorampa's refutation of Tsongkhapa in Freedom From Extremes is devastating. No wonder the Gelug political authority of central Tibet had the text banned.


Far from being 'devastating', Gorampa's refutation is most unconvincing and is easily dismissed. He clearly doesn't understand the nature of conventional truths. Tsongkhapa's interpretation is far more convincing and satisfying, providing as it does a perfect union of conventional and ultimate truths in accordance with Nagarjuna's intention.
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby Tsongkhapafan » Wed Mar 09, 2011 2:50 am

conebeckham wrote:Dzokchen says otherwise, TsongKhapa fan.
In fact, most Masters say otherwise. Instead of quoting Dzokchen masters, I'll go with some of those favored by Madhyamika adherents.....


conebeckham, there is a danger in quoting texts, because some of the words require interpretation. For example 'free from thoughts' doesn't necessarily mean non-conceptual; it can also mean free from thoughts of inherent existence. This is also the case with 'does not exist', which should be read as 'does not exist inherently', meaning that they are not utterly non-existence but are mere appearances and mere names. This is consistent with Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti's intentions.

Chandrakirti in particular disagreed with the idea of autonomous proofs as presented by Bhavaviveka and other Madhyamika Svatantrikas as what appears to the mind depends on your ideas, karmic pre-dispositions and so forth which is why a commentary is necessary to clarify the meaning.
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby Josef » Wed Mar 09, 2011 2:56 am

Tsongkhapafan wrote:
Nangwa wrote:Nonsense.
The view that is in the minority on the interpretation of Nagarjuna and Chadrakirti is most definitely Tsongkhapa's.
Gorampa's refutation of Tsongkhapa in Freedom From Extremes is devastating. No wonder the Gelug political authority of central Tibet had the text banned.


Far from being 'devastating', Gorampa's refutation is most unconvincing and is easily dismissed. He clearly doesn't understand the nature of conventional truths. Tsongkhapa's interpretation is far more convincing and satisfying, providing as it does a perfect union of conventional and ultimate truths in accordance with Nagarjuna's intention.

Whatever you say chief.
The only thing that is unconvincing is that you are at all familiar with Gorampa's views, or Nagarjuna's for that matter.
It sounds like your giving a sales pitch or simply regurgitating what you read in Tharpa Publications.
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Re: Dzogchen teaching of Tsongkhapa

Postby ngodrup » Wed Mar 09, 2011 3:04 am

Like it or not, Je Tsogkhapa's main Tantric sources are Nyingma.
Like it or not, about 70% of his writings are on Tantric subjects.
Je Tsongkhapa was a revolutionary philosopher who had studied
every system existing in his time, he also practiced them.
His view is not sectarian, his followers... well another story.
But the great monastic universities were intended for all Tibetans,
not just Gelugpas.
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