Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Adamantine » Wed Jun 06, 2012 4:39 am

Malcolm wrote:
Adamantine wrote:Now how does this work with the claim that any religion can come and study Dzogchen?[/b]


I never made that claim. Relgions are are not people.

What I said was that anyone, regardless of religion, who is interested may come and study Dzogchen teachings.


That was a typo, silly. Of course, I meant "Now how does this work with the claim that any person following any religion can come and study Dzogchen?"
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Virgo » Wed Jun 06, 2012 4:45 am

Karma Dorje wrote:I don't think the OP is asking a good faith question. I frankly don't understand the fundamentalism we have seen from some quarters on these threads. It has certainly provided a reductio ad nauseum of the institutional view.

I have never once seen Malcolm say that you *cannot* practice whatever you want in terms of buddhist practice as an approach to Dzogchen. He has merely said that it is not necessary, and in some respects contrary to the intent of the Dzogchen teachings. This is nothing different than what you find in any number of dzogchen texts themselves.

Have you never had a moment after years of doing a sadhana where you just burst out laughing at how contrived the whole "Now we meditate on emptiness" approach is? It is a kind of foolishness, if a useful one for certain kinds of minds at certain stages of practice. The problem is, it can be really easy to reify and then completely lose the whole point of the practice that goes beyond practice-- particularly if you go through a very hierarchical path where you really feel like you are getting somewhere. This isn't to say that one can't perform these tantric practices from within the dzogchen view... in important respects that is the only way to really do them to be of benefit to beings. Malcolm's point (if I can presume to say I understand it) is that it ain't necessarily so.

I agree with this. I just couldn't articulate it as well.

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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby LunaRoja » Wed Jun 06, 2012 4:49 am

Actually the Umbanda religion of Brazil is a mix of African, Catholicism, and Brazilian Indian that also accepts Karma and reincarnation...

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/082634 ... 04_s00_i00

I have studied a bit of New Orleans Hoo Doo mainly to learn about the pharmacopeia used in their practices. There is much wisdom in African folk medicine but unfortunately much of their knowledge of medicinal plants has been lost. However there are still proper apprentices learning to pass down the tradition. My personal belief is medicine has always been one part science and one part magic but of course now I digress.....
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Adamantine » Wed Jun 06, 2012 4:54 am

Malcolm wrote:As for gyalpos, not all gyalpos are "bad". ChNN makes that point frequently.


I never said he said all gyalpos are bad, however -and I think it was you- someone on here or esangha mentioned ChNN recommended avoiding condomblé practitioners because of the gyalpo association. Is this incorrect information?

It is a fact that he paints a pretty damning portrait of gyalpo provocations in his personal experience in Tibet, and even had nervous problems with his own practice of a "good" gyalpo (i.e., Pehar, who was actually bound under oath by Guru R. so is a legitimate protector).



As I said, any person from any religion, who is interested to study and practice Dzogchen may do so without having to convert to Buddhism.


And that is fine to say, but is that your own view derived from your own personal experience? Or are you paraphrasing what you think ChNN is teaching?

Anyway, I not going to lend any further dignity to this thread because it was clearly conceived polemically, with religious hostility, and I am not interested persuing this thread any further.
I assure you that any lack of dignity is in your bitter responses. I am quite tired of you hurling accusations as to my motivations. I don't bear any "grudge" as you have wrongly claimed, and I am indeed interested in your sudden transformation of views, because I have debated with you on the other side of this equation in the past, have you forgotten? So, having been influenced in the past by you, in the opposite direction, I am interested in how cohesive this new passionate approach is that you are promoting. Mainly, because although ChNN is not my only teacher, and not the only teacher of mine whose views I respect, he is indeed my teacher too. And I would very much like to understand what his true intent is. I am not convinced that you are representing it. When I see a contradiction between things I have heard or read in his teachings, and what you are saying --seemingly on his behalf-- I want to take a look at that and for you to respond without all of this spite and accusations that I am just being polemical. Please, relax a little, I am not attacking you. I am asking you to respond to apparent contradictions.

Even yourself, I assume partly influenced by ChNN's views, have on a number of occasions said that the Mad Cow disease in England was from Gyalpo provocations due to the excessive gyalpo propitiations performed in England (NKT).

I just have a hard time believing that ChNN would approve of his disciples actively engaging in practices and/or belief systems that are harming other beings -human or otherwise. I know how he has been very helpful to people who have left cults that involve gyalpo worship, even giving them special protection cords, etc.. So I don't see how someone could not bring this up in relation to the religious pluralism question.
Last edited by Adamantine on Wed Jun 06, 2012 5:43 am, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Adamantine » Wed Jun 06, 2012 5:12 am

jbaumannmontilla wrote:Two things.

1.Everything that Malcolm is saying is actually in the early dzogchen texts. So maybe you want to go argue with Manjusrimitra.


I can't argue with manjusrimitra, as he is not alive.. but I have read some of his writings. Whether the translations are any good is another story. I can have conversations with living Dzogchen masters.. but I don't know any that make the across the board generalizations that we are discussing here.

Anyway, in case you missed Heart's signature this is a manjusrimitra quote:
"The direct, hard to understand, subtle field of knowing, the Great Path, is non-conceptual (akalpana), and entirely beyond the grasp of intellectual thought. Divorced from verbal ideation, it is difficult to point out and as difficult to enquire into. It cannot be communicated through words and [therefore] is not within the scope of the neophyte (adikarmika). Nevertheless the path is to be approached through studying scriptures (sutra) of the World-Teacher and following the personal instructions (upadesa) of one's Guru-ji."

Bodhicittabhavana by Acarya Sri Manjusrimitr


2. These posts on Afro Diasporic religions are deeply racist, drawing upon a whole history of demonization of people of African descent and denigration of their religions.


Hardly, I never said anything racist in any of my posts, I am referring to something I was told ChNN himself said, and I don't think he was being racist.
If you watch the film, you will see how little regard or respect for the animals being slaughtered there is... and the intoxicated relishing in the death of the animals, biting into their bleeding flesh while they are still dying, smearing blood all over their faces, etc. The cruelty is self-evident. It is not racist of me to observe for myself what fellow human beings are doing, regardless of their race. You don't even know what race I am so you are being ridiculous.



Your friend's film is voyeuristic and exploitative.
And you know this because you have seen it? Do you often judge films you haven't even seen? It is really unhelpful to just snap judgments on things you know nothing about. Actually, everyone in this film seemed delighted to be filmed, and it had a very respectful approach: just filmed documentation of many scenes, the practitioners own poetic accounts of their gods history and qualities, and the native music.. nothing was done to color things in any way by the filmmaker. Plus, as I said, this was a friend-of-a-friend.. pay better attention. I have no agenda in defending them.. but you are simply reactive with no basis.

The Tibetans aren't vegetarians, neither are the Haitians
Well, I know many Tibetan vegetarians.. so that is a wrong statement..and as I pointed out above, it was not the eating of meat I found disturbing, it was the apparent joy found in killing with cruelty-- even one young man held a decapitated goats head up and made all kinds of mocking faces with it.. think about someone doing this with your mother or wife's head. .I tend to see animals lives in the same precious light that I see human lives. So I do feel sad when I see people being cruel to animals, in the same way I would feel sad if I saw them do the same to a human being.

And? Isn't Mahasiddha Krishnacharya depicted riding a zombie?
Riding a zombie is a much different thing than becoming one. The former implies subjugation. Anyway, obviously we are not talking about zombies in the sense the Tibetan's discuss, we are talking about people ritually using a drug that induces very aggravated trance like states that sometimes mirror catatonia.

Spirit possession is also practiced by Tibetans, they're called oracles. One of them advises the Dalai Lama. "Pretty Nutso Stuff."


I don't believe possession itself is the root issue, but the nature of the entities doing the possession.. and the motivations on both side of the equation.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Adamantine » Wed Jun 06, 2012 6:11 am

Malcolm wrote:
You should practice whatever you feel is important for you. Afterall, you know your own condition best.

M


But can't we often be quite self-delusional? Aren't there many people who easily mistake marigpa for rigpa? Aren't there even quite advanced practitioners that get caught and fall from what realization they may have had?

Because of these things, I've been under the impression that it is worthwhile to appeal to the wisdom mind of the Guru, to look to their insight about our condition, perhaps above and beyond our own assumptions. So I am not sure about the statement that I know my condition the best. I would like to believe it though! It's a nice idea.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Adamantine » Wed Jun 06, 2012 6:21 am

Malcolm wrote:Yes, in general (but not always) animals used in such ritual sacrifices are then consumed. It is the same actually in Dakshinkali in Katmandhu. From my point of view, blood sacrifices are based on a mistaken concept.


Ok, I appreciate that you feel similarly about blood sacrifices as I do, and it so happens this is also a Buddhist view I believe.

But I think anyone from one of this religions where blood sacrifice is common who comes to practice Dzogchen teachings will understand that and eventually cease.


So it is your understanding that people can begin the Dzogchen teachings with a given belief system in place, but that by practicing Dzogchen, just Guru Yoga of White AH (not any conceptual teachings) they will come to realize some of their beliefs (if not all) are wrong through their own innate experience of their primordial nature?



However, pleasedo bear in mind that the Lhasa Gvt. hired non-Buddhist priests to sacrifice bulls yearly to satiate the bloodthirsty gods and demons of Tibet prior to 1959
.

I wasn't aware of this, what's your source? But yeah, there was a lot of messed up stuff perpetrated by the Lhasa Gvt... Of course, they were a political institution, acting under the guise of Buddhism.. The hiring of non-Buddhist priests for this just seems like the epitome of hypocrisy.

[/quote]
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby daelm » Wed Jun 06, 2012 7:00 am

Adamantine wrote:
Malcolm wrote:

As I said, any person from any religion, who is interested to study and practice Dzogchen may do so without having to convert to Buddhism.


And that is fine to say, but is that your own view derived from your own personal experience? Or are you paraphrasing what you think ChNN is teaching?



For example, those who already have a certain familiarity with Tibetan culture might think that to practice Dzogchen you have to convert to either Buddhism or Bon, because Dzogchen has been spread through these two religious traditions. This shows how limited our way of thinking is. If we decide to follow a spiritual teaching, we are convinced that it is necessary for us to change something, such as our way of dressing, of eating, of behaving, and so on. But Dzogchen does not ask one to adhere to any religious doctrine or to enter a monastic order, or to blindly accept the teachings and become a "Dzogchenist." All of these things can, in fact, create serious obstacles to true knowledge.

Chogyal Namkhai Norbu. Dzogchen: The Self-Perfected State (Kindle Locations 161-166). Kindle Edition.

The principle in Dzogchen is to avoid creating anything false, and to really understand the reasons for what one is doing. It is not important to define oneself as belonging to this or that school, tradition, or point of view, and it makes no difference whether one considers oneself to be Buddhist or not. Basically, feeling oneself to be a follower of something or other is just a limit, and what one really needs is to understand one's own condition and to open oneself, getting rid of all these kinds of barriers.


Chogyal Namkhai Norbu. Dzogchen: The Self-Perfected State (Kindle Locations 1048-1051). Kindle Edition.



hat tip to Malcolm who has already provided these citations. there are 100's of others in the original thread that make the same point. another earlier citation that deserves to be revisited is this...

Just as the "Lotus-like Lord" of everything worldly
does not reject anything, (all things) are seen as
alike and present in utter sameness.
This very seeing as deceptive that which (is fundementally
not deceptive), is to be understood as
deception.
Even the teachings of the six (Hindu schools) and the
deeds of the Lord of limitations are not to rejected and
regarded as negative.


CNNR Namkhai and Kennard Lipman's translation of Manjusrimitra, as per jbaumannmontilla, here: viewtopic.php?f=48&t=8318&hilit=namkhai+norbu&start=1120#p103464
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Simon E. » Wed Jun 06, 2012 7:04 am

I suppose when the previous long thread on the subject tailed off it left some people short of excitement and with the need to go through all the same stuff all over again. Although by half way through that thread it was already by then treading water.

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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Sönam » Wed Jun 06, 2012 7:34 am

... just to point out that ONLY Guru Yoga is necessary (the same state with the master). Thigle and white A are secondaries supports, if necessary ...

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By understanding that any and all mental activity is meditation, you are freed from arbitrary divisions between formal sessions and postmeditation activity.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Adamantine » Wed Jun 06, 2012 10:19 am

daelm wrote:
For example, those who already have a certain familiarity with Tibetan culture might think that to practice Dzogchen you have to convert to either Buddhism or Bon, because Dzogchen has been spread through these two religious traditions. This shows how limited our way of thinking is. If we decide to follow a spiritual teaching, we are convinced that it is necessary for us to change something, such as our way of dressing, of eating, of behaving, and so on. But Dzogchen does not ask one to adhere to any religious doctrine or to enter a monastic order, or to blindly accept the teachings and become a "Dzogchenist." All of these things can, in fact, create serious obstacles to true knowledge.

Chogyal Namkhai Norbu. Dzogchen: The Self-Perfected State (Kindle Locations 161-166). Kindle Edition.

The principle in Dzogchen is to avoid creating anything false, and to really understand the reasons for what one is doing. It is not important to define oneself as belonging to this or that school, tradition, or point of view, and it makes no difference whether one considers oneself to be Buddhist or not. Basically, feeling oneself to be a follower of something or other is just a limit, and what one really needs is to understand one's own condition and to open oneself, getting rid of all these kinds of barriers.


Chogyal Namkhai Norbu. Dzogchen: The Self-Perfected State (Kindle Locations 1048-1051). Kindle Edition.



hat tip to Malcolm who has already provided these citations. there are 100's of others in the original thread that make the same point. another earlier citation that deserves to be revisited is this...

Just as the "Lotus-like Lord" of everything worldly
does not reject anything, (all things) are seen as
alike and present in utter sameness.
This very seeing as deceptive that which (is fundementally
not deceptive), is to be understood as
deception.
Even the teachings of the six (Hindu schools) and the
deeds of the Lord of limitations are not to rejected and
regarded as negative.


CNNR Namkhai and Kennard Lipman's translation of Manjusrimitra, as per jbaumannmontilla, here: http://www.dharmawheel.net/viewtopic.ph ... 20#p103464


Regurgitating the same quotes just is not helpful. It is ironic that you would throw in the quote from Ken Lipman's translation because I threw that same quote out there on Esangha a few years ago in a thread I started about practicing Dharma and visiting saints like Ammachi and sadly all those archives were lost but I don't believe Malcolm was very generous towards the way you're reading this quote at the time.

What's more I already re-quoted Manjusrimitra on this same thread via Heart's signature, so you will have to reconcile these two quotes for yourself.

As for the ChNN text, I own one called simply "Dzogchen Teachings". Here's some quotes that are supportive of a different view. .
For example:
There are hundreds of thousands of titles and techniques, but they are all used for the purpose of discovering our real condition. This is the essential teaching of Buddha, Garab Dorje, and all the important masters. For example, there are collections of the teachings of Buddha called the Kangyur and the Tengyur. There are hundreds of volumes. We know that if we are going to study only one sutra or tantra, we need our whole life to really understand its contents and different teachings. In order to learn all these books, we would need many lives. When would be get time to realize? This is our concrete condition. It is relative, and not really the main point. The main point is what (Shakyamuni) Buddha said: "I discovered something profound and luminous beyond all concepts. I tried to communicate it with words, but nobody understands. So now I will meditate alone in the forest." This verse of Buddha is the conclusion of the teaching.
The teaching is not a title or a book. The teaching is not Sutra or Tantra or Dzogchen. The teaching is knowledge and understanding for discovering our real nature. That is all it is; however, it is not easy. That is why the Buddha explained many kinds of teachings according to different circumstances and the various capacities of beings.


A few pages later:
There is a teaching that is universal to all Buddhists called the Four Noble Truths. This was the first teaching transmitted by Buddha. Even if we have different methods in the teaching, such as Tantra and Dzogchen, they are always based on the Four Noble Truths. Why are they called Four Noble Truths? They are noble because they are important for knowledge and understanding.


Do I have to exhaust myself quoting the thousands of other things in this book that support the view of Dzogchen being a Buddhist teaching and practice or can we stop the quotation battle and just discuss the questions I raised in the OP?! I believe your post is off-topic.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Simon E. » Wed Jun 06, 2012 10:29 am

Dzogchen can be a practice for Buddhists.
It can also be a practice for non Buddhists...who make up the majority of the human race. I accept that. You clearly dont. What is there to discuss ?
Do you really think that either side of the debate is going to come up with a form of words that will make the other side say " golly gosh you were right all along ! " I certainly dont.
Whats more I am perfectly relaxed about the fact they you think Dzogchen cannot be practiced outside of Buddhism...that fine and dandy with me. :twothumbsup:
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Adamantine » Wed Jun 06, 2012 10:36 am

Simon E. wrote:Whats more I am perfectly relaxed about the fact they you think Dzogchen cannot be practiced outside of Buddhism...that fine and dandy with me. :twothumbsup:


I have never made such a claim. I would appreciate it if people stopped putting words in my mouth, and if such people would simply refrain from posting here if they have nothing useful to contribute to the original posts. I would like to have a dialogue that explores the seeming contradictions that I have introduced, for the purposes of clarifying either approach to this issue. I am not attached to one view or another, I just like to examine things thoroughly.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Simon E. » Wed Jun 06, 2012 10:51 am

I am also prefectly relaxed about the fact that you want to examine things thoroughly. :smile:
However If I might say so with respect, you certainly dont seem to be relaxed about it.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby daelm » Wed Jun 06, 2012 11:57 am

Adamantine wrote:
What's more I already re-quoted Manjusrimitra on this same thread via Heart's signature, so you will have to reconcile these two quotes for yourself.




nope. you have to reconcile them. because, as simon pointed out, you have the problem: we don't think it's a problem that you think Dzogchen and Buddhism are compatible. go for it. go wild.

and i'd vote with simon again on one more thing: start with some relaxation. (or not, of course.)


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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Clarence » Wed Jun 06, 2012 12:16 pm

Oh, come on. I think it is a good question. If Dzogchen can be practiced with any religion, then how can one combine it with an evil Gyalpo worshipping religion. I also don't see how that it is possible. The rest is distraction of the topic at hand.

Anyway, I find it quite entertaining that many Malcolm followers are always in agreement with him. About a month ago, before his new realizations, people would agree with him, and now, having done a 180, they still are in agreement with him and bring up his points as if they were theirs all along. Pretty amusing.

As for myself, not that it is interesting or entertaining in any way, but I was never such a dogmatic Buddhist as Malcolm ever was so his turn-around doesn't affect my opinions on this subject very much. I think the same goes for a lot of people, including Adamantine. So, it would be nice if people could at least show some respect when he asks valid questions. No one is out to get Malcolm and he is perfectly capable to speak for himself, better than most people are and I think everyone here appreciates his input greatly so there is no need to get defensive for him.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby treehuggingoctopus » Wed Jun 06, 2012 12:46 pm

Adamantine wrote:So please excuse me if I take liberties, but I am only trying to do something akin to what Nagarjuna was so good at: look at a proposition and take it to it's logical extreme.


And what exactly are you trying to achieve in this way?

Nagarjuna used that kind of deconstructive terrorism to exhaust every possible viewpoint - which is to say, to show that every possible ontological position self-deconstructs. Fine and dandy, that Nagarjunian reductio ad absurdum, if you want to demolish an idea. It is (at best) totally useless, though, if you want to understand a proposition - or talk to people.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Simon E. » Wed Jun 06, 2012 12:49 pm

The point is what Dzogchen can be and is, practiced without.
There might be all sorts of things that it cant be practiced with.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Mariusz » Wed Jun 06, 2012 1:06 pm

treehuggingoctopus wrote:
Adamantine wrote:So please excuse me if I take liberties, but I am only trying to do something akin to what Nagarjuna was so good at: look at a proposition and take it to it's logical extreme.


And what exactly are you trying to achieve in this way?

Nagarjuna used that kind of deconstructive terrorism to exhaust every possible viewpoint - which is to say, to show that every possible ontological position self-deconstructs. Fine and dandy, that Nagarjunian reductio ad absurdum, if you want to demolish an idea. It is (at best) totally useless, though, if you want to understand a proposition - or talk to people.
You obviously don't know how to use Nagarjunian kind of investigation. :rolleye: Have you ever tried to find for example where is your mind?
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby treehuggingoctopus » Wed Jun 06, 2012 1:12 pm

Mariusz wrote:
treehuggingoctopus wrote:
Adamantine wrote:So please excuse me if I take liberties, but I am only trying to do something akin to what Nagarjuna was so good at: look at a proposition and take it to it's logical extreme.


And what exactly are you trying to achieve in this way?

Nagarjuna used that kind of deconstructive terrorism to exhaust every possible viewpoint - which is to say, to show that every possible ontological position self-deconstructs. Fine and dandy, that Nagarjunian reductio ad absurdum, if you want to demolish an idea. It is (at best) totally useless, though, if you want to understand a proposition - or talk to people.
You obviously don't know how to use Nagarjunian kind of investigation. :rolleye:


Obviously.
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