Aro gTér Dzogchen Community of Ngak'chang Rinpoche

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Aro gTér Dzogchen Community of Ngak'chang Rinpoche

Postby asunthatneversets » Fri Dec 30, 2011 10:30 pm

I usually attend practices in the community of ChNN but I saw on another thread that someone wrote "that explains alot" in response to a quotation from a Aro related site. I took "that explains alot" to be a sarcastic statement (however i could be wrong). I was wondering what people's perceptions are of this lineage?

Taken From The Aro Site:
Ngak’chang Rinpoche (Ngakpa Chogyam) is the reincarnation of Aro Yeshé, the son of the extraordinary female visionary Lama Khyungchen Aro Lingma, who founded the Aro lineage.
Between 1970 and 1984, Ngak’chang Rinpoche spent extended periods in the Himalayas receiving teachings and transmissions from many of the most revered teachers of the Nyingma Tradition. During this time he accomplished all the traditional practices, and received all the necessary empowerments and transmissions, of a Nyingma Lama. Hailing from a financially disadvantaged background, he funded his trips entirely through factory work and manual labour in Britain. He completed—in varying sections—four years in solitary retreat – often living in extremely basic conditions with little to eat.
With the encouragement of his Lamas, he began teaching in 1979. In 1989, he was awarded a doctorate in Tibetan Tantric Psychology from the University of West Bengal. He has been a visiting lecturer at the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology in California and has contributed articles to several books, journals, and magazines on the subject of Vajrayana Psychology. He has given several keynote presentations at international psychology conferences for the British Psychological Society, and the Association of Transpersonal Psychology in the USA
Ngak’chang Rinpoche is the author of six books, many co-written with Khandro Déchen. He is a Vajrayana calligrapher, poet, thangka painter, multi-talented Vajrayana craftsman, and exponent of Yogic Song and Lama-dance.



Taken From Wikipedia:
Aro is a lineage within the Nyingma tradition of Tibetan Buddhism (Aro means "taste of the primordial A" in Tibetan). It has several unusual characteristics. The terma on which it is based teaches all Buddhist topics from point of view of Dzogchen, and so is characterized by uncommon simplicity. The lineage is entirely non-monastic (Ngagpa), and so emphasizes householder practice and non-celibate ordination. All of its contemporary teachers are ethnically non-Tibetan.

The Dzogchen point of view permeates Aro. The lower yanas (Sutrayana and Tantrayana) are re-presented in Dzogchen terms, and take on its characteristic style of simplicity, clarity, and expansiveness. Enlightenment needs only to be recognized, and is not produced by artificial means. Aro is therefore primarily concerned with bringing meditative awareness into ordinary life, rather than with elaborate, intellectualized, and time-consuming liturgical chanting. For Dzogchen, the ultimate practice is "living the view," i. e. experiencing and acting in the world as non-dual.

The Aro lineage is based on the Aro gTér, a terma or "revelation" of Khyungchen Aro Lingma. The Aro gTér has several distinctive characteristics: it treats all Buddhist subjects from point of view of Dzogchen; as a consequence its practices are simpler than the elaborate sadhanas typical of Tantric Buddhism; and it includes practices of semde and longde as well as the more common men-ngag-de. These characteristics make it particularly suitable for those with jobs and families, and therefore limited practice time, which accords with the Aro lineage's non-monastic orientation.


I've personally had limited experience with Aro. My "mentor" however considers Ngakpa Chogyam to be his root teacher (due to Ngakpa Chogyam giving him direct introduction) and attends their practices regularly (in addition to ChNN's community). I attended one practice and it was quite different than the practices at the Ling I go to for ChNN's Dzogchen Community. All of the mantras, chanting, singing is in english and there's more of an interactive discussion and atmosphere. It's very formal which isn't good or bad but wasn't what i was used to. I also attended an empowerment by Ngakpa Chogyam for the Owl-Headed Dakini. (From Wikipedia: Within the Aro gTér, the Sutra of the Owl-Headed Dakini (Wylie: 'ug gdong snying thig mkha' 'gro mdo; Sanskrit: Ulukha-mukha Dakini Upadesha Sutra) treats the major topics of Sutrayana from point of view of Dzogchen. It includes unusual presentations of the Four Noble Truths and Eightfold Path, and of the Five Precepts. The Five Precepts are said to have inner meanings at the level of Dzogchen.)

Ngakpa Chogyam is a really charismatic and engaging teacher (in my experience) and the community overall seems to be great... He has quite a few books out and they're easily read and present simple and effective teachings which could definitely serve as a great supplement to anyones practices and/or understanding of Dzogchen...

So with all this in mind i was wondering why the mention of this lineage got a "less-than-desireable" response?
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Re: Aro gTér Dzogchen Community of Ngak'chang Rinpoche

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Dec 30, 2011 10:47 pm

In a nutshell? They're a bunch of fakes and this is widely known.
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Re: Aro gTér Dzogchen Community of Ngak'chang Rinpoche

Postby Pero » Fri Dec 30, 2011 10:49 pm

Probably most of us think it's a fake lineage. What does ngak'chang mean?
Although many individuals in this age appear to be merely indulging their worldly desires, one does not have the capacity to judge them, so it is best to train in pure vision.
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Re: Aro gTér Dzogchen Community of Ngak'chang Rinpoche

Postby Norwegian » Fri Dec 30, 2011 10:56 pm

If you can choose between them and ChNNR, the choice should be pretty obvious...

So, ChNNR and his lineage, the Dudjom Ter, Longchen Nyingthig, Namcho, Khandro Nyingthig, and so on, these are far better choices...
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Re: Aro gTér Dzogchen Community of Ngak'chang Rinpoche

Postby asunthatneversets » Fri Dec 30, 2011 11:04 pm

Dechen Norbu wrote:In a nutshell? They're a bunch of fakes and this is widely known.

Oh ok I had no idea that was the general view of them, but of course my experience has always been backed by bias opinion from my friend so that shaped my perception. I go with ChNN. What makes them fake? I'm just curious.. I hold a fairly moderate and indifferent view of them aside from what seemed positive in my brief experiences. But I also chose to not pursue any type of relationship with their lineage so there was something that didn't vibe with me although I can't say what that was. So my inquiry isn't contentious in any way whatsoever, but what makes it fake?
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Re: Aro gTér Dzogchen Community of Ngak'chang Rinpoche

Postby Mr. G » Fri Dec 30, 2011 11:06 pm

    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
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Re: Aro gTér Dzogchen Community of Ngak'chang Rinpoche

Postby Lhug-Pa » Sat Dec 31, 2011 4:54 am

Last edited by Lhug-Pa on Sat Dec 31, 2011 4:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Aro gTér Dzogchen Community of Ngak'chang Rinpoche

Postby gad rgyangs » Sat Dec 31, 2011 5:03 am

Lhug-Pa wrote:What a bunch of nonsense:

http://arobuddhism.org/community/being- ... antra.html


its at least a plumbing problem: the central channel in a male ends at the tip of the penis, in a women it ends at the cervix. In heterosexual sex, the ends are brought in close proximity or contact. two men or two women are going to have a hard time with this. i believe it goes way beyond just this though, in terms of winds and drops, mirroring of side channels etc.

re: Aro in general: its fun to play dress-up!
Thoroughly tame your own mind.
This is (possibly) the teaching of Buddha.
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Re: Aro gTér Dzogchen Community of Ngak'chang Rinpoche

Postby asunthatneversets » Sat Dec 31, 2011 7:38 am

gad rgyangs wrote:re: Aro in general: its fun to play dress-up!


I was asking my friend about them earlier today after i made this post...

I guess they dress up like that to do the exact opposite of what non-tantra lineages do. Instead of shaving their heads they grow their hair out as long as possible. Instead of dark robes they wear white which symbolizes death... and the blue stripe down the center represents space, the red; menstrual blood, the yellow: nectar... wear ridiculous hats, non-celibate, act vulgar... crazy wisdom type stuff

Image

I guess Ngakpa Chögyam just put out a book about his main teacher Künzang Dorje Rinpoche called Wisdom Eccentrics

A rare account of remarkable Lamas in the final years of a lost era. The author finds himself the first Western disciple of Künzang Dorje Rinpoche, a highly reclusive master known for mercurial wrath and facility with Dzogchen. He received direct introduction to the nature of Mind through ruthless interrogation on the meaning of the stories from the lives of Lineage Lamas. He is separated from his Lama for thirteen years—but they meet again and their relationship resumes.

In the interim he studies with the renowned crazy wisdom master Chhi’méd Rig’dzin Rinpoche. This wild cathartic sojourn gives rise to further stories—purveying an array of exuberantly startling scenarios.

Wisdom Eccentrics is a clear, accessible narrative set in creative contemporary language. The author’s fluent literary account is genuinely heartwarming, hilarious and humane—whilst retaining its power as an alarmingly insightful odyssey into the world of Vajrayana Buddhism.


Image
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Re: Aro gTér Dzogchen Community of Ngak'chang Rinpoche

Postby Adamantine » Sat Dec 31, 2011 9:17 am

asunthatneversets wrote:
gad rgyangs wrote:re: Aro in general: its fun to play dress-up!


I was asking my friend about them earlier today after i made this post...

I guess they dress up like that to do the exact opposite of what non-tantra lineages do. Instead of shaving their heads they grow their hair out as long as possible. Instead of dark robes they wear white which symbolizes death... and the blue stripe down the center represents space, the red; menstrual blood, the yellow: nectar... wear ridiculous hats, non-celibate, act vulgar... crazy wisdom type stuff

Image

I guess Ngakpa Chögyam just put out a book about his main teacher Künzang Dorje Rinpoche called Wisdom Eccentrics

A rare account of remarkable Lamas in the final years of a lost era. The author finds himself the first Western disciple of Künzang Dorje Rinpoche, a highly reclusive master known for mercurial wrath and facility with Dzogchen. He received direct introduction to the nature of Mind through ruthless interrogation on the meaning of the stories from the lives of Lineage Lamas. He is separated from his Lama for thirteen years—but they meet again and their relationship resumes.

In the interim he studies with the renowned crazy wisdom master Chhi’méd Rig’dzin Rinpoche. This wild cathartic sojourn gives rise to further stories—purveying an array of exuberantly startling scenarios.

Wisdom Eccentrics is a clear, accessible narrative set in creative contemporary language. The author’s fluent literary account is genuinely heartwarming, hilarious and humane—whilst retaining its power as an alarmingly insightful odyssey into the world of Vajrayana Buddhism.


Image


Kunzang Dorje Rinpoche was truly a great master. I was able to spend a little time with him while in Nepal a few years ago, he was the Guru to one of my Gurus and some of my friends. It seems clear that Ngakpa Chogyam saw himself as a disciple of KD Rinpoche, what seems far less clear is if KD Rinpoche actually saw Chogyam as his disciple. Instead of recounting what is inevitably second or third hand info, which could be gossip, rumor, or similar, I will just say that from my sources there seems to be some uncertainty and leave it at that.

asunthatneversets: Only you can discern who is the right teacher for you. Having already taken an empowerment from this man, and having recounted your perception of good qualities, this is related to your personal experience. If you perceive good qualities, that is a good thing. Perhaps this thread has given you cause to question if you wish to pursue further relationship-- but to be on the cautious side, do not jump to negative opinions, instead simply create distance, don't create judgement. If it is absolutely true that this Terma is make-believe, you have no samaya to be concerned with. But until a realized master (such as your teacher ChNN) tells you this point blank, and tells you there is no samaya, then I would be cautious about creating negative views. Simply keep your distance for now. Don't antagonize your friend who is a student of his either with debates or anything.. Just be nonchalant, and be grateful you do have a teacher who is beyond doubt a sublime master. Time will inevitably bring more clarity.
Contentment is the ultimate wealth;
Detachment is the final happiness. ~Sri Saraha
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Re: Aro gTér Dzogchen Community of Ngak'chang Rinpoche

Postby Mr. G » Sat Dec 31, 2011 5:05 pm

As the OP's question has been answered, I think it may be best to lock this topic. Further inquiries can be made to mods/Admins by PM.

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    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
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