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 Post subject: Svasamvedana
PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2012 4:27 pm 
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Malcolm,

Is rang rig or rig pa the translation of this "self-awareness" term?

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 Post subject: Re: Svasamvedana
PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2012 4:35 pm 
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Will wrote:
Malcolm,

Is rang rig or rig pa the translation of this "self-awareness" term?



rang rig pa/svasamvedana means "reflexive knowing", and it is theory of cognition usually considered to have originated with Dignaga and Dharmakirti.

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 Post subject: Re: Svasamvedana
PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2012 4:55 pm 
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Malcolm wrote:
Will wrote:
Malcolm,

Is rang rig or rig pa the translation of this "self-awareness" term?



rang rig pa/svasamvedana means "reflexive knowing", and it is theory of cognition usually considered to have originated with Dignaga and Dharmakirti.


But is it not important in Dzogchen, even Garab Dorje's (or Patrul's comments) Three Words using it?

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 Post subject: Re: Svasamvedana
PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2012 5:45 pm 
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Will wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
Will wrote:
Malcolm,

Is rang rig or rig pa the translation of this "self-awareness" term?



rang rig pa/svasamvedana means "reflexive knowing", and it is theory of cognition usually considered to have originated with Dignaga and Dharmakirti.


But is it not important in Dzogchen, even Garab Dorje's (or Patrul's comments) Three Words using it?


No, svasvamvedana is different i.e. it is rang gyis rig, self-knowing.

Rang rig in Dzogchen is rang gi rig, one's own, and is derived instread from another Sanskrit construct: atmyavedana, and in turn this is part of a long phrase, very common in Sanskrit, pratyatmyavedanajñāna or in tibetan so sor rang gi rig pa'i ye shes i.e. personally known wisdom. This is what the rang rig means in Dzogchen i.e. one's own knowledge, wisdom that was no learned from another but arises from one's own experience.

The translation of Dzogchen tantras and texts is still in its infancy, and the 95 percent of them should not be trusted by people who do not know Tibetan,including my own translations.

As is the case with much tantric literature, the root tantras of Dzogchen cannot be understood completely without commentaries.But, within the past ten years or so, six seminal commentaries on the man ngag sde tantras attributed to Vimalamitra have come to light.

Earlier translations made without recourse to these commentaries will be somewhat inaccurate automatically -- it just cannot be helped and there is no reason to blame anyone for honest efforts carried out with insufficient supporting commentaries. But it must be understood that good translations of Dzogchen texts into English are a desiderata. My own efforts are merely a preliminary. I am sure that after I am gone, they will be picked up, picked over, polished or discarded as the case may be in the quest to make clearer and more accurate translations that conform to the definitions and explanations of key points of Dzogchen teachings found in the tantras and commentaries themselves.

In addition there is a wealth commentarial material in the Vima Nyinthig that needs to be digested well.

Maybe in 10 years we will start to have fully accurate, fully nuanced transalations of Dzogchen texts that are widely available. Frankly, most Tibetan lamas do not really deeply understand these tantras and their langauge even if they understand Dzogchen in general perfectly well (moral of story: you do not have to be an expert on the 17 tantras to achieve rainbow body).

For example, today I am working on a citation from the klong drug about nature, essence, and compassion which is literally 1.75 folios long. It is so dense, it cannot be unpacked or understood, let alone translated, without the commentary (which I have, fortunately). In this translation this long and important passage will have to be extensively foot noted with explanations from the commentary (or an appendix, since it covers some 7 long folios). Longchenpa is no help at all, since his method is to merely make a point, and then unleash a long citation from a root tantra with virtually no explanation of the meaning of the passage. In fact in his commentary which closely follows the commentary I am working on (i.e.the tshig don mdzod), he skips this passage entirely because it is so hard to understand without the commentary, or so I am convinced, because for the most part he merely follows the citations as given in this earlier work in the exact order they are presented in that latter.

Back to work...

M

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 Post subject: Re: Svasamvedana
PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2012 7:09 pm 
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So Malcolm, this translation (and notes) of the Three Statements is pretty poor?

"faith in Self-Reflexive Awareness" for example?

http://www.dharmafellowship.org/library ... ements.htm

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 Post subject: Re: Svasamvedana
PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2012 12:51 am 
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Will wrote:
So Malcolm, this translation (and notes) of the Three Statements is pretty poor?

"faith in Self-Reflexive Awareness" for example?

http://www.dharmafellowship.org/library ... ements.htm


Any other Dzogchenpas, besides the busy Malcolm, have a view of this link's translation?

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 Post subject: Re: Svasamvedana
PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2012 2:13 pm 
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Will wrote:
So Malcolm, this translation (and notes) of the Three Statements is pretty poor?

"faith in Self-Reflexive Awareness" for example?

http://www.dharmafellowship.org/library ... ements.htm


Yes... especially considering that they are missing have the text which occurs before the three statements themselves.

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 Post subject: Re: Svasamvedana
PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2012 9:22 pm 
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Malcolm,

The rang syllable is an endless source of confusion for me. The Dzogchen masters themselves seem to gloss it as meaning "of itself" (or "naturally") sometimes, and then sometimes it refers to the one's own person. In general we beginners need to be aware of the genitive particle that is omitted in the contractions used in dzogchen texts (such as rang rig), and that may help us understand the usage?

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 Post subject: Re: Svasamvedana
PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2012 9:45 pm 
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Yudron wrote:
Malcolm,

The rang syllable is an endless source of confusion for me. The Dzogchen masters themselves seem to gloss it as meaning "of itself" (or "naturally") sometimes, and then sometimes it refers to the one's own person. In general we beginners need to be aware of the genitive particle that is omitted in the contractions used in dzogchen texts (such as rang rig), and that may help us understand the usage?


Correct, self-aware or self-knowing requires the instrumental particle kyis/gis/gyis/ etc.

For example, "rang gi lus" means simply "one's body" likewise, "rang gi rig pa" means simply "one's knowledge". In the most ancient dzogchen commentaries such as the two volume commentary on the sgra thal gyur, "rang" of rang rig is glossed simply as gnas pa i.e. as a location.

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 Post subject: Re: Svasamvedana
PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2012 10:04 pm 
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Malcolm wrote:
Yudron wrote:
Malcolm,

The rang syllable is an endless source of confusion for me. The Dzogchen masters themselves seem to gloss it as meaning "of itself" (or "naturally") sometimes, and then sometimes it refers to the one's own person. In general we beginners need to be aware of the genitive particle that is omitted in the contractions used in dzogchen texts (such as rang rig), and that may help us understand the usage?


Correct, self-aware or self-knowing requires the instrumental particle kyis/gis/gyis/ etc.

For example, "rang gi lus" means simply "one's body" likewise, "rang gi rig pa" means simply "one's knowledge". In the most ancient dzogchen commentaries such as the two volume commentary on the sgra thal gyur, "rang" of rang rig is glossed simply as gnas pa i.e. as a location.


So, therefore it could be appropriate to gloss rang grol and rang byung as naturally liberating and naturally occurring (or Dowman's "self-sprung") respectively, because there is no implicit genitive particle?

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 Post subject: Re: Svasamvedana
PostPosted: Mon Oct 22, 2012 6:30 am 
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Yudron, those two terms are great examples. We can see the difference here in taking "rang" as self, either metaphysically or personally, versus "on its own, auto."
"Auto-liberation" isn't very sexy, but it gets around the connotations of the word "self."
Even the term "personal" can get a bit too, uh... "person"-al if we look at it wrong.
I like Malcom's phrase: as a location.

This idea of svasamvedana, rang rig, and the arguments around its validity within Buddhist logic can easily confuse someone into conflating it with the similarly translated dzogchen term. It's a shame the Tibetans couldn't afford to import more words.


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 Post subject: Re: Svasamvedana
PostPosted: Mon Oct 22, 2012 8:58 pm 
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Yontan wrote:
Yudron, those two terms are great examples. We can see the difference here in taking "rang" as self, either metaphysically or personally, versus "on its own, auto."
"Auto-liberation" isn't very sexy, but it gets around the connotations of the word "self."
Even the term "personal" can get a bit too, uh... "person"-al if we look at it wrong.
I like Malcom's phrase: as a location.

This idea of svasamvedana, rang rig, and the arguments around its validity within Buddhist logic can easily confuse someone into conflating it with the similarly translated dzogchen term. It's a shame the Tibetans couldn't afford to import more words.


As a beginner, I'm not sure how to determine whether a "rang" term I am reading has an implicit genitive or not. I don't suppose you would like to post a list of the top 40 Dzogchen terms, telling us which one has an invisible genitive?

Fortunately, I have no background in Buddhist logic to confuse me further!

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