Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

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Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

Postby Josef » Mon Oct 18, 2010 8:05 pm

Translated by Tony Duff with a commentary by the translator and Dza Patrul Rinpoche.
Its very good.

http://www.namsebangdzo.com/Longchen_Ny ... /16748.htm
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Re: Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

Postby ronnewmexico » Mon Oct 18, 2010 10:34 pm

Expecting to see Chod practicioners of many sorts in remote areas and funeral grounds and places of spirits in the past....in the west it seems is only the monastic tradition of Chod....performed in temples and such. And such not rarely is found the practice but only in safe environs,

It seems there are two traditions one monastic and one yogic in practice.

Is it stated there is only one by all here?

Not to claim any intent nor held view....I really don't care. Just to ask what peoples think.
Deviating from topic a bit but it appears relevent in a sort of way.

I have heard rumor of such still existing the strangest of the strange long matter hair of any sort or description keeping to the outsides of towns and such......are they all gone then? Monastic only performing this thing?
"This order considers that progress can be achieved more rapidly during a single month of self-transformation through terrifying conditions in rough terrain and in "the abode of harmful forces" than through meditating for a period of three years in towns and monasteries"....Takpo Tashi Namgyal.
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Re: Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

Postby Josef » Tue Oct 19, 2010 3:19 pm

Hi Ron,
I think there still are some "old-school" chodpa's out there. I do think they are quite rare though.
I also think there is a third option emerging in the modern practice of chod and the nyingthig terma chod practices are influencing its development.
The nyingthig chod places less emphasis on the "yogic activity" aspects than mahamudra chod. Although they have the same final intent there are slight differences in implementation that make the nyingthig chod particularly practical for this third group of chodpa's who are neither wandering sages or monastics.
The nyingthig chod is very closely tied to the practice of trekcho and this is the starting point of the practice rather than the finish line.
This allows the chodpa to practice in a variety of settings that still produce the appropriate circumstances for the practice. I personally find that one can use the nyingthig chod in both a "safe" setting like ones home and in other frightening (nyensa) places and use the practice appropriately.
I feel very strongly that chod is a powerful practice for us in the west and that we can use it appropriately without all of the yogic appearances of the past. Not that I dont find them to be valuable, I usually try to keep my zen with me although I dont have the long hair or earrings etc.
So I guess, in short I think there are three major styles of chod practice now. The yogic activity chod, monastic chod, and the modern ngakpa chod.
The modern ngakpa chod falls somewhere in between the two.
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Re: Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

Postby ronnewmexico » Tue Oct 19, 2010 6:23 pm

Thanks very much for the educated response. I do carry some baggage on this, in that I find most practicing Chod in the west very reluctant to discuss any aspect except in perhaps a strictly temple setting. I realize the inner practices are secret and for good reason but the context as you describe seems useful for all to discuss. I find such not allowing discussion, seemingly noncompassionate in effect.
So I carry baggage, I am not set in this but it appears at least to the personal so.

I would think at some level temple can not be such exclusive and only monastic setting to exclusion. I would think this is missing opportunity. I never actually see any chod practiced in the west
outside of temple or monastary. Some must but I'd guess very very few. Like the little used practice of wilderness employment as meditational aid, it seems like such is relegated to only very advanced practitioner and the others....had best be in temple. That seems a sad thing.

So I am very glad to hear your response and to qualify such.
Thanks
"This order considers that progress can be achieved more rapidly during a single month of self-transformation through terrifying conditions in rough terrain and in "the abode of harmful forces" than through meditating for a period of three years in towns and monasteries"....Takpo Tashi Namgyal.
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Re: Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

Postby Josef » Tue Oct 19, 2010 6:30 pm

ronnewmexico wrote:
I would think at some level temple can not be such exclusive and only monastic setting to exclusion. I would think this is missing opportunity. I never actually see any chod practiced in the west
outside of temple or monastary.

This is definitely true.
Ironically I think its because a lot of people are afraid to. Since most of us live in pretty heavily populated areas its a challenge to find good locations to practice without being noticed by others.
We have to get over this if you ask me and just own the practice. I try to practice out of my comfort zone without being too visible but its impossible to completely avoid.
Its time to just suck it up and not be worried about what others think of what we are doing and practice if you ask me.
After a few times you get used the "what the heck is that weirdo doing?" stares.
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Re: Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

Postby ronnewmexico » Tue Oct 19, 2010 7:19 pm

Thanks again

I know it was not intended to describe youir practice... but it inspires me to hear such talk of unconcern.

To attain enlightenment I really think a warriors approach is always required to a extent. The teacher buddha being born to the warrior cast and Pademesambhva being anything but meek and mild. We must really seemingly be willing to risk everything at some point which is what I thinkingly saw in those of historic tibet in the nonmonastic context of Chod.

So I am enheartened by your description., though inadvertant. Inspiring
"This order considers that progress can be achieved more rapidly during a single month of self-transformation through terrifying conditions in rough terrain and in "the abode of harmful forces" than through meditating for a period of three years in towns and monasteries"....Takpo Tashi Namgyal.
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Re: Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

Postby Josef » Tue Oct 19, 2010 7:43 pm

ronnewmexico wrote:Thanks again

I know it was not intended to describe youir practice... but it inspires me to hear such talk of unconcern.

To attain enlightenment I really think a warriors approach is always required to a extent. The teacher buddha being born to the warrior cast and Pademesambhva being anything but meek and mild. We must really seemingly be willing to risk everything at some point which is what I thinkingly saw in those of historic tibet in the nonmonastic context of Chod.

So I am enheartened by your description., though inadvertant. Inspiring

Thanks Ron.
I appreciate that.
I think its important for us to be forthright without giving too much or anything that would be inappropriate.
In general I feel that the sangha jewel is the most underutilized of the three jewels in the context of western Buddhism.
I think we all have a lot that we can learn from one another that will help us on the path.
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Re: Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

Postby Luke » Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:04 pm

ronnewmexico wrote:Expecting to see Chod practicioners of many sorts in remote areas and funeral grounds and places of spirits in the past....

I just wanted to mention that many countries of the world have experienced so many battles over the years that just about anywhere you step is a place where someone died. There isn't always the need to seek out a visible cemetary.

Nangwa wrote:I think its important for us to be forthright without giving too much or anything that would be inappropriate.
In general I feel that the sangha jewel is the most underutilized of the three jewels in the context of western Buddhism.
I think we all have a lot that we can learn from one another that will help us on the path.


Wow. That's the best thing I've ever read on a Buddhist forum on the internet. You rock.
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Re: Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

Postby Josef » Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:13 pm

Luke wrote:
ronnewmexico wrote:Expecting to see Chod practicioners of many sorts in remote areas and funeral grounds and places of spirits in the past....

I just wanted to mention that many countries of the world have experienced so many battles over the years that just about anywhere you step is a place where someone died. There isn't always the need to seek out a visible cemetary.

Nangwa wrote:I think its important for us to be forthright without giving too much or anything that would be inappropriate.
In general I feel that the sangha jewel is the most underutilized of the three jewels in the context of western Buddhism.
I think we all have a lot that we can learn from one another that will help us on the path.


Wow. That's the best thing I've ever read on a Buddhist forum on the internet. You rock.


You make a good point about powerful places for practice. There are locations all over the world that are conducive to this kind of practice.

Also, you rock too Luke.
:twothumbsup:
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Re: Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

Postby Dharmaswede » Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:14 pm

Greetings,

It is a challenge for those who live densely populated areas. And perhaps many Westerners do not practice in nyentsa as often as in old Tibet, but who really knows? Lama Jinpa has written very interestingly about internet as nyentsa (http://www.machikcholing.com/ - scroll down to "The Haunted Internet"), where some people (Westerners presumambly) practice! But by the end of the day it does not really matter if people practice in nyentsa or not in my humble opinion - since everyone practice according to their own capacity and motivation. That is good enough. (I am not saying that it does not matter whether you practice in nyentsa or not, just that I don't see the point in judging others on that basis.)

It is an interesting point that there might be a third tradition emerging in the West. But there were also householders in old Tibet, that were neither wandering nor monastic - so maybe not something so new after all. While there certainly were distinct monastic and non-monastic traditions, there was also a spectrum between the two which an individual could move along during his or her life span.

By the way, Ven. Paula Chichester in the Gelugpa tradition has made two four year retreats - does that qualify her as "monastic"? Anyway, she has also done the traditional wandering 108 Springs retreat in Scotland (http://forums.about.com/n/pfx/forum.asp ... m&tid=1637).

Best Regards,

Jens
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Re: Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

Postby Josef » Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:21 pm

Dharmaswede wrote:Greetings,

It is a challenge for those who live densely populated areas. And perhaps many Westerners do not practice in nyentsa as often as in old Tibet, but who really knows? Lama Jinpa has written very interestingly about internet as nyentsa (http://www.machikcholing.com/ - scroll down to "The Haunted Internet"), where some people (Westerners presumambly) practice! But by the end of the day it does not really matter if people practice in nyentsa or not in my humble opinion - since everyone practice according to their own capacity and motivation. That is good enough. (I am not saying that it does not matter whether you practice in nyentsa or not, just that I don't see the point in judging others on that basis.)

It is an interesting point that there might be a third tradition emerging in the West. But there were also householders in old Tibet, that were neither wandering nor monastic - so maybe not something so new after all. While there certainly were distinct monastic and non-monastic traditions, there was also a spectrum between the two which an individual could move along during his or her life span.



I completely agree Jens. The "third" option that I was talking about before is not necessarily a new thing.
Good points on that and on nyentsa.
Also, Lama Jinpa's article is quite good.
I'm not sure about Ven. Paula. I dont necessarily think its a one way or another scenario though. I think we can effectively practice in any of the 3 styles mentioned in this thread with overlap into one another.
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Re: Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

Postby swampflower » Thu Oct 21, 2010 9:11 pm

Thank you for the reference to this precious text on Chod.
As a new practitioner of Chod I am committed to practice in places of power, nyensa, and also cemeteries.
I will also practice at home as a safe place however the main body of practice will be outside within the wild environment. For me Chod is much more effective in threatening places or in places where a disturbance exists. As has been commented already, almost anywhere may be a place where a disturbance has occurred so it is not difficult to find somewhere to practice Chod. Ghosts and demons abound, but please do not forget the honored guests. :stirthepot:
Oṃ Tāre Tuttāre Ture Svāhā
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Re: Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

Postby Dharmaswede » Mon Oct 25, 2010 8:57 am

Dear Swampflower,

Essential point about not forgetting the guests of honor. I would humbly suggest that beginners (general advice, not aimed at anyone particular, including you) begin at home with white feasts. Doing massive red feasts in heavy places without having some fundamental mastery of the practice is asking for some uprisings that may be very difficult to handle. Chöd is a live wire with high voltage.

As with all Dharma practice, I think the main difficulty is to work very, very hard at your practice - but not too hard, as it may create neurotic or spiritual backlashes. Keeping that balance of effort is a major challenge.

Sadly, every now and then you can see practitioners who blow themselves up with Vajrayana - despite all the warnings from our very kind teachers and in the scriptures. It always hurt to see.

Jens
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Re: Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

Postby catmoon » Tue Oct 26, 2010 12:49 am

Blow themselves up? Gee, I wonder what that would look like. What's the risk?
Sergeant Schultz knew everything there was to know.
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Re: Excellent Commentary on Longchen Nyingthig Chod

Postby Dharmaswede » Tue Oct 26, 2010 8:23 pm

catmoon wrote:Blow themselves up? Gee, I wonder what that would look like. What's the risk?


Oh, many things can go wrong. But the classic blow-yourself-up in Vajrayana is possibly a volatile inflation of the ego, resulting in megalomania of some variety. Please note that's not unique for Vajrayana though, it happens in other spiritual paths as well. I am not well-versed myself, but here are some other suggestions that springs to mind spontaneously:
- unbalanced Tonglen (i.e. receive more than you send, or vice versa), resulting in either depression or false elation
- improper work with channels and winds, resulting in displacement of your Lung energy
- ungrounded (for lack of a better term) Yidam practice, resulting in misidentification of self

This is not to say that Vajrayana medicine is dangerous, just that it is important when you take strong medicine to follow the instructions on the bottle. And that you only should take prescription medicine under the supervision of a doctor. If you follow those procedures, then there is not reason to be worried.

Nota bene - it is not absolutely not my intention to scare or discourage anyone from practice! Just use common sense and listen carefully to your teacher.

Best Regards,

Jens
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