Four main Thoughts.

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Four main Thoughts.

Postby muni » Sun Nov 28, 2010 10:28 am

"Patrul Rinpoche talks about four main thoughts that should precede every meditation, every moment of contemplation: first, the preciousness of human existence; second, impermanence; third, the suffering of samsara; and fourth, karma, or cause and effect.

These four reminders are said to be the main foundation of contemplation. Contemplating them, the meditator is truly able to remain without fabrication, or fabricated beliefs about his or her own spiritual path and spiritual motivation. They should truly enable practitioners to be completely honest with themselves.

In spiritual practices, we sometimes talk about benefiting sentient beings, or making life more meaningful, or being able to truly do something that is good. In the beginning, our motivation may be very clear, but very soon our habitual patterns return.

These habitual tendencies re-create the same patterns of living, thinking, doing, or saying things. Because of this the pull of our habitual patterns, or tendencies, does not allow us to remain in touch with that pure motivation, with what is really beneficial and good.

To overcome such tendencies, the Four Reminders discussed and practiced by Patrul Rinpoche, are essential."
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Re: Four main Thoughts.

Postby ground » Sun Nov 28, 2010 10:41 am

muni wrote:"Patrul Rinpoche talks about four main thoughts that should precede every meditation, every moment of contemplation: first, the preciousness of human existence; second, impermanence; third, the suffering of samsara; and fourth, karma, or cause and effect.


These are the famous "four thoughts that turn the mind to dharma". I know them with the 3rd and the 4th changed in sequence.

However meanwhile I have accustomed myself to Lama Tsongkhapa's sequence:

1. the preciousness of human existence
2. mindfullness of death (gross impermanence)
3. the suffering ot the lower realms (suffering of samsara)
4. refuge being the shelter
5. conviction of karma and effects as shelter (avoid the wrong and cultivate the right)
6. the suffering of samsara in general and its causes to generate the mind intent on liberation

Next comes bodhicitta and wisdom.


Kind regards
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Re: Four main Thoughts.

Postby spiritnoname » Sun Nov 28, 2010 1:32 pm

Heh, I remember reciting those 4 things. Unfortunately the person that gave me the terma text gave up Dharma, so I gave up the practice :coffee:
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Re: Four main Thoughts.

Postby kirtu » Sun Nov 28, 2010 3:33 pm

spiritnoname wrote:Heh, I remember reciting those 4 things. Unfortunately the person that gave me the terma text gave up Dharma, so I gave up the practice :coffee:


You should find an orthodox presentation of the Four Thoughts that Turn the Mind (From Samsara to Dharma). They are a common preliminary and I think are found in the Pali suttas as well.

For example from Yongey Mingyur Dorje for example: The Four Contemplations that Turn the Mind. You can also certainly find it in Words of My Perfect Teacher and other "preliminary", mind training texts.

The Sakya presentation order is different: The Sufferings of Samsara comes first in the Sakya presentation (then Precious Human Birth, Impermanence and Karma).

Kirt
Kirt's Tibetan Translation Notes

"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche
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Re: Four main Thoughts.

Postby neverdowell » Mon Nov 29, 2010 2:21 am

I'm "enjoying" meditation on death and the suffering of the lower realms very much. It's more transformative than you might think.

To develop bodhichitta, which is the actual practice, you need to develop such compassion that you simply cannot bear others being tormented by suffering. But in order to develop this compassion, you must know exactly how you yourself are plagued by suffering. And you must understand that the whole of samsara is by nature suffering. But first you must fear the lower realms, for without this you will have no repudiation of celestial and human happiness. You must therefore train your mind in the small- and medium- scope parts of the path. -- Pabongka Rinpoche
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Re: Four main Thoughts.

Postby Dhondrub » Mon Nov 29, 2010 11:35 pm

Four Reminders

Joyful to have
Such a human birth,
Difficult to find,
Free and well-favored.

But death is real,
Comes without warning.
This body
Will be a corpse.

Unalterable
Are the laws of karma;
Cause and effect
Cannot be escaped.

Samsara
Is an ocean of suffering,
Unendurable,
Unbearably intense.

Composed by the Vidyadhara Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche
© 1974 by Chögyam Trungpa

To urge the mind to the dharma, the contemplation of the difficulty of obtaining a free and favorable human life:

This free and favorable life, very difficult to obtain,
Brings the accomplishment of the purpose of human existence.
If the benefits are not achieved now,
How will such an opportunity arise later?

The contemplation of impermanence and death:

The three worlds are impermanent like the clouds of autumn.
The birth and death of beings are like a drama you are watching.
The life of beings passes like a flash of lightning in the sky.
It goes quickly, like water tumbling down a steep mountain.

The contemplation of karmic cause and effect:

When their time comes, even sovereigns pass away,
And enjoyments, loved ones, and friends cannot follow after.
But wherever beings are, wherever they go,
Karma follows after them like a shadow.


The contemplation of the faults of samsara:

Through the power of craving, becoming, and ignorance,
Beings circle helplessly through the five realms
Of humans, gods, and the three lower existences.
It is like the spinning of a potter’s wheel.

The three worlds blaze with the sufferings of old age and sickness.
There is no protection here from the fiercely blazing fires of death.
Beings who arise in this world are ever deluded.
They are like bees trapped in a vase, circling.

Those are the spotless words of the perfect Buddha. Contemplate them thoroughly as you chant.

Excerpt from The Blissful Path to Liberation: The Liturgy for the Preliminaries Drawn from The Ornament of the Mind of Guru Padmakara, The Practice Manual for The Very Profound Sacred Great Perfection Sadhana of the Embodiment of the Three Jewels (Könchok Chidü ngöndro) by Jamgön Kongtrül the Great

© 1996-2000 by the Vajravairochana Translation Committee



http://nalandatranslation.org/offerings ... reminders/
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