Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

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Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby padma norbu » Fri Sep 09, 2011 10:53 pm

??

I typically read stuff about mediation that it helps you to deal with stress and clears your head, allowing you to think much better.

Well, non-meditation might be different. How does it affect you?

I personally seem to find that my brain doesn't want to think about stuff, which is difficult when I am trying to figure out some programming stuff and my brain just seems to put on its brakes.

I don't know what's going on or if it related to my practices, but my brain is on vacation and doesn't look like it ever wants to come back.
"Use what seems like poison as medicine. We can use our personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings." Pema Chodron
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby Malcolm » Sat Sep 10, 2011 12:19 am

padma norbu wrote:??

I typically read stuff about mediation that it helps you to deal with stress and clears your head, allowing you to think much better.

Well, non-meditation might be different. How does it affect you?

I personally seem to find that my brain doesn't want to think about stuff, which is difficult when I am trying to figure out some programming stuff and my brain just seems to put on its brakes.

I don't know what's going on or if it related to my practices, but my brain is on vacation and doesn't look like it ever wants to come back.



Given that the practice of Dzogchen ultimately results in omniscience, it should help.
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby pemachophel » Sat Sep 10, 2011 12:24 am

My Root Guru once said it could go either way: a dolt could become a genius and a scholar could become someone with nothing to say.
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby kirtu » Sat Sep 10, 2011 12:31 am

padma norbu wrote:Well, non-meditation might be different. How does it affect you?


You can become very content and don't want to do much or you just read and do Dharma stuff (and you have other stuff to do). It's a negative mind state because you are subtly (or not so subtly) wasting time and letting other people down. So you have to buckle down and get to work. In Zen this has a particular name (like a Ghost Cave) but it is usually applied to settling into a very comfortable content mental state during meditation - it's a kind of cul-de-sac and the teacher might have to blast you out of it. I don't know enough if it's addressed directly in Dzogchen teaching (given a label for example) but it happened to Chagdud Tulku after a deep retreat when he was a boy (but after he got serious with practice). In that story it was addressed as a negative mind state.

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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby padma norbu » Sat Sep 10, 2011 1:17 am

Very interesting. Thanks for the responses.
"Use what seems like poison as medicine. We can use our personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings." Pema Chodron
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby White Lotus » Sat Sep 10, 2011 4:25 pm

does naturally being yourself hinder your thinking process?

best wishes, Tom.
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby gnegirl » Sat Sep 10, 2011 4:51 pm

Who is doing all this thinking?
"Things are not what they appear to be: nor are they otherwise." --Surangama Sutra

Phenomenon, vast as space, dharmata is your base, arising and falling like ocean tide cycles, why do i cling to your illusion of unceasing changlessness?
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby padma norbu » Sat Sep 10, 2011 7:58 pm

I could probably come up with a neat little one-liner, too.
"Use what seems like poison as medicine. We can use our personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings." Pema Chodron
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby Fa Dao » Sat Sep 10, 2011 8:06 pm

although my experience is limited I would have to say that dzogchen practices seem to free up my thinking process making it much less obsessive. Slowly but surely I am feeling like less of a slave to my thoughts and emotions.
"But if you know how to observe yourself, you will discover your real nature, the primordial state, the state of Guruyoga, and then all will become clear because you will have discovered everything"-Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby Jikan » Sat Sep 10, 2011 8:09 pm

padma norbu wrote:I could probably come up with a neat little one-liner, too.


I did, but it killed my lawn.

Back to non-thinking for me.
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby padma norbu » Sat Sep 10, 2011 8:33 pm

Fa Dao wrote:although my experience is limited I would have to say that dzogchen practices seem to free up my thinking process making it much less obsessive. Slowly but surely I am feeling like less of a slave to my thoughts and emotions.


The reason I even thought about it is because some kinds of thinking are so intense that you lose all awareness of yourself, such as in programming. It's quite different from resting in natural awareness. It's a "zone" where the thinking is so abstract it's hard to explain, but it is similar to how you don't have to think about the words coming out of your mouth to express your thoughts, but of course not so second-nature (not at all, actually). In the Social Network movie, I noticed they frequently referred to it as "he's wired in." Lately, trying to get my brain to shift into this mode just seems impossible. It also feels like maybe a subconscious mental block like some part of me is saying, "Nope, don't want to do this anymore. Better start looking for a new line of work, bub..."
"Use what seems like poison as medicine. We can use our personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings." Pema Chodron
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby Fa Dao » Sat Sep 10, 2011 10:16 pm

Padma Norbu,
from my limited understanding of dzogchen it is my understanding that rigpa is to be integrated with anything and everything in our lives.,,even the self induced madness that writing massive lines of code can bring. I am guessing that like most programmers you sit down to the computer and go from 0 to 60 and start clacking away. Perhaps the next time you sit down to code start slow and with awareness...just a thought
"But if you know how to observe yourself, you will discover your real nature, the primordial state, the state of Guruyoga, and then all will become clear because you will have discovered everything"-Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby gnegirl » Sat Sep 10, 2011 10:56 pm

padma norbu wrote:I could probably come up with a neat little one-liner, too.


mmm hmm, yep, mm hmm, hrmmmm....

Yep yep yep yep. *nod*


<yoda>come up with snappy one-line one could do, but one did not</yoda>
"Things are not what they appear to be: nor are they otherwise." --Surangama Sutra

Phenomenon, vast as space, dharmata is your base, arising and falling like ocean tide cycles, why do i cling to your illusion of unceasing changlessness?
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby Virgo » Sat Sep 10, 2011 11:06 pm

gnegirl wrote:
padma norbu wrote:I could probably come up with a neat little one-liner, too.


mmm hmm, yep, mm hmm, hrmmmm....

Yep yep yep yep. *nod*


<yoda>come up with snappy one-line one could do, but one did not</yoda>

How about this one:

<yoda>"Much to learn you still have!"</yoda>

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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby padma norbu » Sat Sep 10, 2011 11:55 pm

how about I just smack you on the face with my sandal? :shrug:
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby padma norbu » Sat Sep 10, 2011 11:58 pm

Fa Dao wrote:Padma Norbu,
from my limited understanding of dzogchen it is my understanding that rigpa is to be integrated with anything and everything in our lives.,,even the self induced madness that writing massive lines of code can bring. I am guessing that like most programmers you sit down to the computer and go from 0 to 60 and start clacking away. Perhaps the next time you sit down to code start slow and with awareness...just a thought


Ya... just wondering if it may have had anything to do with increased practice lately or if it's something else.
"Use what seems like poison as medicine. We can use our personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings." Pema Chodron
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby Virgo » Sun Sep 11, 2011 12:29 am

Norbu, I think you took my last comment the wrong way.

Also, if you think you can't zone in at work because your trying to be present. Relax, "zone in" if you have to so you can do your job effectively. On your down time try to work on presence. Eventually, they say, you will be able to more and more, even in those situations when you are focused on work.

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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby username » Sun Sep 11, 2011 2:03 am

Zen's doctrine of no mind and various emptiness states sans clarity and hedewa, blank mind etc. are all slightly different things, as is the psychological state known as 'burnout'. Dzogchen has prelminiary practices to prepare too integrating with then without object plus static and then in motion as one progresses (or lapses for a moment). But once the natural state is achieved and then stabilized we are told the nature of mind slowly becomes the dominant background and all other activity is integrated and indeed 'enhanced' like talking while driving or riding a bycycle or walking all of which once learnt can not be forgotten and become background automata processes requiring no effort.
Dzogchen masters I know say: 1)Buddhist religion essence is Dzogchen 2)Religions are positive by intent/fruit 3)Any method's OK unless: breaking Dzogchen vows, mixed as syncretic (Milanese Soup) 4)Don't join mandalas of opponents of Dalai Lama/Padmasambhava: False Deity inventors by encouraging victims 5)Don't debate Ati with others 6)Don't discuss Ati practices online 7) A master told his old disciple: no one's to discuss his teaching with some others on a former forum nor mention him. Publicity's OK, questions are asked from masters/set teachers in person/email/non-public forums~Best wishes
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby padma norbu » Sun Sep 11, 2011 3:18 am

Virgo wrote:Norbu, I think you took my last comment the wrong way.


I was just joking, trying to think of something even less than a one-liner but more "enlightened." :smile:
"Use what seems like poison as medicine. We can use our personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings." Pema Chodron
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Re: Do "dzogchen practices" help or hinder your thinking ability

Postby Dechen Norbu » Sun Sep 11, 2011 2:36 pm

padma norbu wrote:??

I typically read stuff about mediation that it helps you to deal with stress and clears your head, allowing you to think much better.

Well, non-meditation might be different. How does it affect you?

I personally seem to find that my brain doesn't want to think about stuff, which is difficult when I am trying to figure out some programming stuff and my brain just seems to put on its brakes.

I don't know what's going on or if it related to my practices, but my brain is on vacation and doesn't look like it ever wants to come back.


If you do things properly you will have a sharper, more coherent and more creative thinking. You will work much better, faster and will feel less tired.
There's a caveat though. Your life priorities may change and you may feel that you should invest your time in activities more conducive to the Path. With the right teacher, you may also discover that after some time almost every activity can be used as so. Doing things the right way is a little less easier than it seems. There are subtle hindrances that screw one's practice if not overcome.

If you do things in the wrong way... who knows? You may get depressed, sluggish, exhausted and so on. You may start having a lot of conflicts inside your mind about what you should be doing, how so and what not...

So, having a very good teacher is important, especially because western life brings a lot of challenges if we are to practice more or less "traditionally". It's not like we can go to a retreat and people take care of us while we practice. :smile:
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