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Clarence wrote:Ask your teacher if you can do 10000 of each and then again and again until you have done 10 such sets. That way you practice all 5 but still feel like you actually accomplish something. A lot of people give up before finishing 100000 prostrations because it just takes too long. 10000 prostrations can be done in 10 days. Then 10000 Bodhicitta then Vajrasattva, then Mandala, then 100000 Guru Yoga. Then, repeat.
Clarence wrote: 10000 prostrations can be done in 10 days.
gregkavarnos wrote:Dear ngondronewbie,
Just because your ngondro practice is not satisfying your expectations does not mean it is not bringing results.
Clinging to your experiences from other practices is not going to help you progress. The harder to try to achieve the effect, the more you anticipate it, the less opportunity you give to your practice to actually progress (not in relation to numbers, but in relation to quality).
Anyway why do you expect all the practices to give the same result? An ice cold beer and a cup of hot chocolate are both beverages but you don't expect them to give the same results, so why expect it from the practices?
Really though, you should go see your teacher and discuss the issue.
These are just my thoughts and I am no authority on on the matter, just trying to struggle through my daily practices and ngondro!
I like this approach.Clarence wrote:Ask your teacher if you can do 10000 of each and then again and again until you have done 10 such sets. That way you practice all 5 but still feel like you actually accomplish something. A lot of people give up before finishing 100000 prostrations because it just takes too long. 10000 prostrations can be done in 10 days. Then 10000 Bodhicitta then Vajrasattva, then Mandala, then 100000 Guru Yoga. Then, repeat.
I'm in my 60's with two herniated disks and acid reflux (GERD), however, having said this I may well be able to perform prostrations with little ill effect. It may take a few weeks of practice before I would know.justsit wrote:Sure, if you're a healthy young guy with no family or in closed retreat. Realistically, if you're a Westerner with a full time job and family, and/or older, and/or a woman, and/or have a physical limitation - maybe not.
Everyone's karmic circumstances are different. It's OK, just do what you can do, it's not a race.
Hmmmm. In my case if I was to undertake Ngondro, I believe I would have to accept a mindset that I may actually never finish. Thus the comment made several times that Ngondro is a complete practice in itself is significant since I may never get beyond Ngondro.kirtu wrote:Obviously for prostrations you have to work up to that and you may just have to lengthen the period for prostrations (35 prostrations a day still makes it in just under eight years).
Ngondro is extremely valuable, and definitely a good idea. However, it's a commitment that will take you a lot of time and effort. There will be challenges, there will be doubts, but if done properly, it will be more than worth it.Sopa wrote:Having said the above, do you think I should start Ngondro anyway?
Certainly, some teachers will prefer if you do that. Others just want you to get started on ngondro as quickly as possible. Others give different advice to different students. They all show a complete path to enlightenment, so it's ok. Again, somewhat random people on the internet can't tell you what your teacher wants for you. By all means, talk to your teacher. Any teacher will make time to answer that question, because it's one of the best questions you can ask in the beginning. And they will certainly be happy to hear that you want to practice and want to make sure you do the right thing.Sopa wrote:My understanding is that completion of ngondro for certain practices isn't a fixed requirement. For example, at this stage in my life it may be more beneficial to discuss with my teacher focusing on a a practice such as Chenrezig or Green Tara rather than ngondro.
Again, any thoughts?
Andrew108 wrote:You can discuss a lot of things with your teacher but eventually it will come down to how you view your experiences. What are your experiences? How do they abide? When do they abide and so on. The ngondro is really good if you want to understand experience and develop the view. If the view is already developed then Chenrezig practice is great. You need confidence in the view first.
What I did was something like 50,000 prostrations and 111,000 Vajrasattva plus studying the 'Progresive Stages of meditation on Emptiness' by Khenpo Tsultrim Gyamtso. The physical part of the ngondro didn't particularly inspire. The vajrasattva part was important and I left out the mandala offering because I thought it contrived and still do. The guru yoga is done all the time. The fact is that the view becomes the meditation. You can do all the practices you want and 3 year retreats and so on but you will need to have confidence in the view in order to practice genuine dharma. So if there is one question you can ask your teacher it is 'how do I get absolute confidence in the view?' Then when you and your teacher know that that is your goal then it makes the practices fit into place because they are obviously secondary to that realization.
Andrew108 wrote:Mandala is an understanding of appearance / emptiness. If the practice brings this understanding then great.
pemachophel wrote:This is a spiritual technology that has been proven to work over dozens of generations of practitioners.
pemachophel wrote:Reality is not at all how we think it is (and that, of course, is exactly the problem). By doing these practices, you will experience a new reality far different from what you thought before, a much more magical, open-ended reality that goes far beyond such limiting/grasping concepts as culture, history, science, rationality, etc.
pemachophel wrote:Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche tells a story that each time He does another 100,000 mandala offerings (presumably within a new ngondro each time), He sees His wisdom markedly increase in terms of His understanding of the Dharma. This is an extremely important teaching.