Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby mañjughoṣamaṇi » Wed Jun 06, 2012 1:50 pm

Clarence wrote: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.


I agree.

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.


I second this as well.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Karma Dorje » Wed Jun 06, 2012 2:48 pm

Clarence wrote: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.


One man's "evil gyalpo" is another man's "enlightened protector". HINT: The evil gyalpo is what the other guy worships.

Clarence wrote: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.


I have no idea what Malcolm's beliefs were prior to this forum, aside from what he has reported in the course of these threads. On this board I have seen a much more nuanced view than seems to have been attributed to him. Saying that there are countless paths that lead to Dzogchen is hardly evidence of a Damascene conversion. It's just common sense and from what I have seen in a very short time as a student of Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche, entirely consistent with his repeated admonitions to go beyond limitations. This is the same thing my late guru told us and how he lived his life. He was a dzogchen master, a bhikshu and also held several of the Dashnami ordination lineages. When he was speaking to Buddhists, he taught them Buddhist dharma. When he was speaking to Hindus, he taught Hindu dharma. Both were simply platforms for ripening student's minds to prepare them for dzogchen teaching, based on whatever their samskaras were.

It's just plain rude to set up a thread the way this one was. It's purpose was polemical and the tone of the OP unnecessarily dismissive. We all feel strongly about these issues. I get that, but the tone feels more like the Judean People's Front crack suicide squad than an attempt at an honest discussion.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Simon E. » Wed Jun 06, 2012 2:53 pm

Hear hear.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby heart » Wed Jun 06, 2012 3:25 pm

Clarence wrote: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.


:good:

I also find it interesting how fast everyone suddenly left Buddhism behind.

/magnus
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Soar » Wed Jun 06, 2012 3:32 pm

mañjughoṣamaṇi wrote:
Clarence wrote: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.


I agree.


How about you continue being Buddhist but drop that specific practise with that specific sect.

Real easy answer, so why is this a good question ?
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Fruitzilla » Wed Jun 06, 2012 3:37 pm

heart wrote:
Clarence wrote: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.


:good:

I also find it interesting how fast everyone suddenly left Buddhism behind.

/magnus


Color me mesmerized :yinyang:
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Mariusz » Wed Jun 06, 2012 3:51 pm

heart wrote:
Clarence wrote: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.


:good:

I also find it interesting how fast everyone suddenly left Buddhism behind.

/magnus

very interesting, because as I questioned, it is only hypothetical if the complete Dzogchen without Buddhism/Bon surive or will survive ever???
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Simon E. » Wed Jun 06, 2012 3:55 pm

Clearly many people knew each other ( in the virtual world at least ) before Malcolm dropped what was for many a bombshell. I get the feeling that for many it gave them license to say what they had perhaps been thinking but were wary of saying. But I dont know the situation as well as most of you.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Karma Dorje » Wed Jun 06, 2012 3:57 pm

heart wrote:I also find it interesting how fast everyone suddenly left Buddhism behind.

/magnus


Straw man. I haven't left anything behind. The lion's share of my formal practice is buddhist, mostly Sarma HYT. Aside from Malcolm saying that his practice is exclusively Dzogchen, I don't see anyone else making the same claim. To admit of other possibilities is not to abandon anything but fettered thinking.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Lhug-Pa » Wed Jun 06, 2012 4:03 pm

Well I've been saying from day one—even if not in these exact words—that Dzogchen is both the origin and pinnacle of all Teachings/Dharmas, and that you don't have to be a "Buddhist" to have that Knowledge.

Yet I also want to say that if someone was for example into spiritualism "new age" channeling/mediumistic séances, and they became truly interested in Dzogchen, they would most likely eventually drop those spiritist practices.

Or if they "believed in Jesus" in a literal way, like "God" as an old white guy on a celestial throne somewhere, they would most likely eventually change their view from such childishness (not child-like, but childish) to the more 'esoteric view' of God actually being a symbol for Kunjed Gyalpo, our Primordial State, and the Christ-principle as a symbol of Bodhicitta, etc.

However I think that most who enter the learning of Dzogchen teachings probably already have a more serious esoteric background at that point (i.e. are probably more Sufi than mainstream Muslim, more Kabbalist than mainstream Jewish, or are of a more overtly Pantheistic Religion like Yoruba, Shetaut Neter/Metu Neter, etc.).
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Mariusz » Wed Jun 06, 2012 4:04 pm

Karma Dorje wrote:
heart wrote:I also find it interesting how fast everyone suddenly left Buddhism behind.

/magnus


Straw man. I haven't left anything behind. The lion's share of my formal practice is buddhist, mostly Sarma HYT. Aside from Malcolm saying that his practice is exclusively Dzogchen, I don't see anyone else making the same claim. To admit of other possibilities is not to abandon anything but fettered thinking.

You right, as I know Namkhai Norbu and Malcolm are still buddhists officially.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby xylem » Wed Jun 06, 2012 4:16 pm

i think we need to put our big boy pants on and recognize and learn to articulate that the DC of CNNR is a unique dharma culture. in truth every sangha is a unique dharma culture as each sangha is the mandala of its guru, but the DC is much like the shambhala of CTR. CNNR and CTR are similar in being supremely realized, but also keenly aware of the psychology and psychopathology of western students, and with that insight, capable of transmitting the teachings while side-stepping a lot of cultural snags. because of this, both the DC and shambhala are hard to contextualize for practitioners in the more traditional mainstream forms of tibetan buddhism. i consider CNNR one of my teachers having received direct introduction and teachings from him by webcast, and while his teachings are spot-on with my other teachers, the DC dharma culture is very different and peculiar for me. i have also attended shambhala teachings and feel similarly about the teachings of CTR, PC (pema chodron) and even the senior most shambhala teachers i have met-- dead on with my other teachers. the culture i don't get. DC is going to contextualize with traditional tibetan buddhism no better than shambhala, so best to not try. DC is DC and that's awesome.

i don't think it helps anyone to present a continuum of dzogchen practice where DC solely inhabits the pole of "real" "authentic" "unadulterated" "non-institutionalized" dzogchen with everything else inhabiting some part of a continuum that is contaminated by forms of "modified" "nontraditional" "adulterated" "institutionalized" forms of dzogchen practice. these "will the real dzogchen please stand up" threads are really less about what dzogchen orthodoxy might be and more about what DC orthodoxy is. again, DC is DC and that's awesome. the truth is, there are other lamas that teach dzogchen outside the context of the gradual path, ngondro, two stages and so on, just like CNNR-- and their dharma culture is much different than the DC culture. the truth is, even if one receives pointing out instructions and mengagde in the context of "institutional" dzogchen teachings-- it's the same dzogchen and transcends the dualistic practices of the gradual path, ngondro, 2 stages and so on, just like the dzogchen of the "real" "authentic" dzogchen teachers. dzogchen is dzogchen. we only have one natural state.

personally, i don't get any of this. i appreciate the lamas who only see one dharma. those who can take a teaching like the 37 bodhisattva practices and show that it is a mahayana teaching, a mahamudra teaching, a dzogchen teaching. if one sees the dharma as only one dharma, then one has only one practice. all of this talk abut the "real" dzogchen, "institutionalized" dzogchen, dzogchen culture, dzogchen and buddhism is just a distraction.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Adamantine » Wed Jun 06, 2012 4:35 pm

xylem wrote:i think we need to put our big boy pants on and recognize and learn to articulate that the DC of CNNR is a unique dharma culture. in truth every sangha is a unique dharma culture as each sangha is the mandala of its guru, but the DC is much like the shambhala of CTR. CNNR and CTR are similar in being supremely realized, but also keenly aware of the psychology and psychopathology of western students, and with that insight, capable of transmitting the teachings while side-stepping a lot of cultural snags. because of this, both the DC and shambhala are hard to contextualize for practitioners in the more traditional mainstream forms of tibetan buddhism. i consider CNNR one of my teachers having received direct introduction and teachings from him by webcast, and while his teachings are spot-on with my other teachers, the DC dharma culture is very different and peculiar for me. i have also attended shambhala teachings and feel similarly about the teachings of CTR, PC (pema chodron) and even the senior most shambhala teachers i have met-- dead on with my other teachers. the culture i don't get. DC is going to contextualize with traditional tibetan buddhism no better than shambhala, so best to not try. DC is DC and that's awesome.

i don't think it helps anyone to present a continuum of dzogchen practice where DC solely inhabits the pole of "real" "authentic" "unadulterated" "non-institutionalized" dzogchen with everything else inhabiting some part of a continuum that is contaminated by forms of "modified" "nontraditional" "adulterated" "institutionalized" forms of dzogchen practice. these "will the real dzogchen please stand up" threads are really less about what dzogchen orthodoxy might be and more about what DC orthodoxy is. again, DC is DC and that's awesome. the truth is, there are other lamas that teach dzogchen outside the context of the gradual path, ngondro, two stages and so on, just like CNNR-- and their dharma culture is much different than the DC culture. the truth is, even if one receives pointing out instructions and mengagde in the context of "institutional" dzogchen teachings-- it's the same dzogchen and transcends the dualistic practices of the gradual path, ngondro, 2 stages and so on, just like the dzogchen of the "real" "authentic" dzogchen teachers. dzogchen is dzogchen. we only have one natural state.

personally, i don't get any of this. i appreciate the lamas who only see one dharma. those who can take a teaching like the 37 bodhisattva practices and show that it is a mahayana teaching, a mahamudra teaching, a dzogchen teaching. if one sees the dharma as only one dharma, then one has only one practice. all of this talk abut the "real" dzogchen, "institutionalized" dzogchen, dzogchen culture, dzogchen and buddhism is just a distraction.


:good:
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Adamantine » Wed Jun 06, 2012 4:50 pm

Clarence wrote: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..


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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Sally Gross » Wed Jun 06, 2012 5:05 pm

heart wrote:
I also find it interesting how fast everyone suddenly left Buddhism behind.

/magnus


In the event that the term "Buddhism", as you have used it, is coterminous with "Buddha-Dharma", I'm not at all sure that everyone, or even most people, have left Buddhism behind. In the event that the term "Buddhism" as you use it refers to institutional, culturally-specific packaging as distinct from the Buddha-Dharma itself, and is not coterminous with the Buddha-Dharma, your comment makes more sense. Speaking personally, I do see myself as a Buddhist; but given a choice between culture-specific institutional packaging and Dharma when the two drift apart in certain respects (for example, Holy War conceptions in certain strands of Sinhalese Buddhism), would choose Dharma and hope that you, too, would do so. Are we all truly disagreeing with one another or are we sometimes talking past one another by using the same terms in different senses and sometimes with different references as well?
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kaarako na, kiriyaa va vijjati,
atthi nibbuti, na nibbuto pumaa,
maggam atthi, gamako na vijjati


Suffering there certainly is, but no sufferer,
no doer, though certainly the deed is found.
peace is achieved, but no-one's appeased,
the way is walked, but no walker's to be found.

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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Lhug-Pa » Wed Jun 06, 2012 5:07 pm

By the way, even though there may or may not be some here with a bit of a bandwagon mentality (on either "side" of the debate) doesn't mean that everyone who agrees with Malcolm's attitude towards Dzogchen has such a mentality.

So those kind of remarks that some have made on the forums about "jumping on the "non-Buddhist" bandwagon" are quite unfair.

And it also doesn't mean that everyone who prefers the strictly Buddhist approach to Dzogchen has that mentality either.

Now I personally don't mind getting conventionally labeled as a Buddhist myself.

And it would probably be difficult to find in non-Buddist Religions practices that are as powerful as the practices found in Anuyoga Tantra or Anuttara Tantra. Maybe things were different in the distant past, or will be different in the distant future. Or maybe current non-Buddhist practices with power equivalent to Anuttara Tantra are not publicly known of by anyone except for High Initiates.
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Sönam » Wed Jun 06, 2012 5:25 pm

Karma Dorje wrote:
heart wrote:I also find it interesting how fast everyone suddenly left Buddhism behind.

/magnus


Straw man. I haven't left anything behind. The lion's share of my formal practice is buddhist, mostly Sarma HYT. Aside from Malcolm saying that his practice is exclusively Dzogchen, I don't see anyone else making the same claim. To admit of other possibilities is not to abandon anything but fettered thinking.


I make the same claim ... I only practice Dzogchen !

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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 Sönam » Wed Jun 06, 2012 5:30 pm

and I still have the Buddhist obscuration ...

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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Dechen Norbu » Wed Jun 06, 2012 6:04 pm

heart wrote:
Clarence wrote: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.


:good:

I also find it interesting how fast everyone suddenly left Buddhism behind.

/magnus

I for one am tired of repeating I see myself as a Buddhist. What I don't say is that everyone needs to be a Buddhist to practice Dzogchen, even if I concede it may be quite helpful, if not by anything else at least due to the terminology. So, who are these people, this everyone, you are talking about?
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Re: Dzogchen "without Buddhism"

Postby Dechen Norbu » Wed Jun 06, 2012 6:33 pm

xylem wrote:i think we need to put our big boy pants on and recognize and learn to articulate that the DC of CNNR is a unique dharma culture. in truth every sangha is a unique dharma culture as each sangha is the mandala of its guru, but the DC is much like the shambhala of CTR. CNNR and CTR are similar in being supremely realized, but also keenly aware of the psychology and psychopathology of western students, and with that insight, capable of transmitting the teachings while side-stepping a lot of cultural snags. because of this, both the DC and shambhala are hard to contextualize for practitioners in the more traditional mainstream forms of tibetan buddhism. i consider CNNR one of my teachers having received direct introduction and teachings from him by webcast, and while his teachings are spot-on with my other teachers, the DC dharma culture is very different and peculiar for me. i have also attended shambhala teachings and feel similarly about the teachings of CTR, PC (pema chodron) and even the senior most shambhala teachers i have met-- dead on with my other teachers. the culture i don't get. DC is going to contextualize with traditional tibetan buddhism no better than shambhala, so best to not try. DC is DC and that's awesome.

Indeed. And there are very good reasons for that, some of which pass trough not importing a system "as is" to a completely different culture and society.

i don't think it helps anyone to present a continuum of dzogchen practice where DC solely inhabits the pole of "real" "authentic" "unadulterated" "non-institutionalized" dzogchen with everything else inhabiting some part of a continuum that is contaminated by forms of "modified" "nontraditional" "adulterated" "institutionalized" forms of dzogchen practice. these "will the real dzogchen please stand up" threads are really less about what dzogchen orthodoxy might be and more about what DC orthodoxy is. again, DC is DC and that's awesome. the truth is, there are other lamas that teach dzogchen outside the context of the gradual path, ngondro, two stages and so on, just like CNNR-- and their dharma culture is much different than the DC culture. the truth is, even if one receives pointing out instructions and mengagde in the context of "institutional" dzogchen teachings-- it's the same dzogchen and transcends the dualistic practices of the gradual path, ngondro, 2 stages and so on, just like the dzogchen of the "real" "authentic" dzogchen teachers. dzogchen is dzogchen. we only have one natural state.

What seems rather funny is that it took ChNN to present Dzogchen openly to the West. Today many lamas claim to be teaching Dzogchen. Some I am sure are. I'm not a cynic. Others, let's say I'm not so sure.
What I wonder, sometimes, is why all these Dzogchen teachers haven't started earlier. Why ChNN had to be a pioneer, for which he took a lot of heat, and why suddenly "everyone" (using everyone like Magnus does), is now teaching Dzogchen.
In a way this reminds me of the webcast system. First it was cursed, now everyone is using it.
Of course the natural state is the natural state. But if you wait years on end to receive DI or to recognize it, while meanwhile you should be getting rid of doubt and integrating it, when you can do that, it seems rather foolish. My experience, and here I think it is better not to generalize, is that the so called "tantric approach" never really approached me to Dzogchen. Or if it did and I haven't noticed, well, with ChNN methods I made more progress in months than I did till that point. It's my experience. Other may have different experiences.


personally, i don't get any of this. i appreciate the lamas who only see one dharma. those who can take a teaching like the 37 bodhisattva practices and show that it is a mahayana teaching, a mahamudra teaching, a dzogchen teaching. if one sees the dharma as only one dharma, then one has only one practice. all of this talk abut the "real" dzogchen, "institutionalized" dzogchen, dzogchen culture, dzogchen and buddhism is just a distraction.

Yes, it's a distraction.
And do you know what also is a distraction? Making students interested in Dzogchen go through years of Tantric practice instead of working with Dzogchen methods from the start. It's also a distraction creating the idea that Dzogchen is for "advanced practitioners", an idea unmistakably widespread among Vajrayana practitioners. Of course now a lot of people claim such is not done by this, that and the other teacher beyond ChNN. I know a few teachers, I know quite a lot actually. The only place where I can honestly say I haven't seen this being done, was the Dzogchen Community. I'm not saying there aren't others doing it, but if such is the case, I just don't know them by own experience. As I don't know a lot of teachers and others I don't know well, there's a lot of space for me to be wrong. Some claim there are others and I assume good faith on their part.

The fact is that this whole shebang, in my opinion, boils down to two opposing options: 1) you either believe that the tantric approach is the best way to get to Dzogchen, in your personal case or, if you're more extremist, in everyone's case, or 2) you believe that the approach to Dzogchen used by ChNN and a very few others - that is not the traditional tantric approach- works better in your own case - or in everyone's case if you're more extremist. You can't reconcile these. If you believe one is better than the other, you'll have to choose. If you hear ChNN arguments on why the nine yanas system is not necessary, you're not going to follow it unless you think he is mistaken. I'm sorry, but this is not possible, like it is not possible to say that a car is a plane and a plane is a car. You can say both are means of transportation, but you can't ignore the differences. This doesn't mean that if you prefer the car, you can say planes suck or vice versa. Recognizing the natural state is the beginning of Dzogchen practice, not the end of a long path of accumulations.

So, my only disagreement with your very good points is that you seem to believe that this is a matter of culture in certain communities, like the DC or others. It's at this point that I part ways with you, assuming I'm understanding you properly. It is not simply a matter of a culture inside a community. Sure, these subcultures exist, but in this case and in the matter at hand, it steams directly from the way the teachers present their own ideas.
What also seems more common is that students of ChNN and other teachers have more difficulty with this issue, perhaps because they need to reconcile two very different approaches to Dzogchen practice. I understand it may be a hard spot to be in.

Best wishes.
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