Dr. Reginald Ray

No holds barred discussion on the Buddhadharma. Argue about rebirth, karma, commentarial interpretations etc. Be nice to each other.

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Mr. G » Sun Feb 13, 2011 3:38 pm

I've only had the chance to read the Davidson books Geoff. Could you summarize your point on how this relates to Ray? Are you saying that Ray's revelations are equivalent to that of Guru P and Naropa? Or just that Ray's revelations are no more or less substantial in that they are personal revelations as were Guru P's and Naropas?

Yeshe D. wrote:It's helpful to have an understanding of the historical, developmental context of the teachings attributed to Guru Rinpoche and Nāropa, et al, to add historical context to narratives of visionary revelation and faith-based claims of transmission purity, etc. For example:

The Funerary Transformation of the Great Perfection by David F. Germano.

Architecture and Absence in the Secret Tantric History of the Great Perfection by David F. Germano.

The Great Perfection: A Philosophical and Meditative Teaching of Tibetan Buddhism by Samten Gyaltsen Karmay.

Dreaming the Great Brahmin: Tibetan traditions of the Buddhist poet-saint Saraha by Kurtis R. Schaeffer.

Indian Esoteric Buddhism: A Social History of the Tantric Movement by Ronald M. Davidson.

Tibetan Renaissance: Tantric Buddhism in the Rebirth of Tibetan Culture by Ronald M. Davidson.

Tantric Treasures: Three Collections of Mystical Verse from Buddhist India by Roger R. Jackson.

All the best,

Geoff
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
User avatar
Mr. G
 
Posts: 4098
Joined: Wed Jan 20, 2010 6:36 am
Location: Spaceship Earth

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Jnana » Mon Feb 14, 2011 1:21 am

mr. gordo wrote:I've only had the chance to read the Davidson books Geoff. Could you summarize your point on how this relates to Ray? Are you saying that Ray's revelations are equivalent to that of Guru P and Naropa? Or just that Ray's revelations are no more or less substantial in that they are personal revelations as were Guru P's and Naropas?

I'm not comparing Ray to any mahāsiddha. What I'm suggesting is that there is historical context regarding the narratives of visionary revelation and faith-based claims of transmission purity, which can be taken into consideration when discussing the development of vajrayāna. From this perspective there is no need to believe that all of these teachings arrived from on high as complete systems. Rather, they developed over time, just as the Mahāyāna developed over time.

All the best,

Geoff
Jnana
 
Posts: 1106
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 12:58 pm

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Jnana » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:19 am

mr. gordo wrote:Ray does not believe in rebirth because he defines "enlightenment" as being equal to physical death. How is this not adharmic?

Ray is not denying a postmortem continuum. What he seems to be implying is that this continuum may very well be much more profound, dynamic, and multi-dimensional than what is capable of being recorded in any text.

Also, regarding "enlightenment," there are Buddhist versions of parinirvāṇa as a complete end -- upon death an arhat has reached that end and will never be reborn again. And there are also versions of this dharma which maintain that if a layperson attains the arhat fruition and doesn't take full monastic ordination s/he will die in short order. It seems that Ray is critiquing the notion of annihilation, proposing instead the view of "journey without goal," and the mind training of "abandon any hope of fruition."

All the best,

Geoff
Jnana
 
Posts: 1106
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 12:58 pm

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby tobes » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:33 am

mr. gordo wrote:
tobes wrote:All he's saying there is that the phenomenology of our own experience is only given to ourselves; and that it contains a richness, multiplicity and potentiality which far eludes categorisation ~ be it in religious doctrines or otherwise.


tobes, I know you're a sharp guy, but you're a postmodern-deconstructionist Buddhist apologist.



:lol: Fair enough. That's hilarious and probably quite accurate. I often get stuck when people ask me what I am....now I have something solid to offer them.

:namaste:
User avatar
tobes
 
Posts: 982
Joined: Fri Dec 24, 2010 5:02 am

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby tobes » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:37 am

mr. gordo wrote:It would be more dharmic if he actually taught Dharma. If he hasn't attained the path where he has direct perception of rebirth, then why wouldn't he just say that the sutras state there is rebirth and leave it at that? If this his attempt at skillful means in propagating Buddhism, perhaps it is not very skillful.


Well maybe, maybe not.

We can't really determine what's skillful and what's unskillful unless we know who he's teaching and what will help liberate them.

:namaste:
User avatar
tobes
 
Posts: 982
Joined: Fri Dec 24, 2010 5:02 am

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Jnana » Mon Feb 14, 2011 3:27 am

Adamantine wrote:I think this betrays your bias in how you're interpreting Ray. I personally find that with my teachers, within the lineage I practice, there is nothing boxed and packaged, --but it is very traditional. The tradition is the container for the essence of the lineage, which is the living realization passed from master to student over generations.... People putting what they are taught into practice, doing serious retreat, and keeping pure lineage. This is not a proselytizing tradition, but it is one that takes purity very seriously. Purity of perception, purity of logic, purity of the lineage, purity of the teachings, and purity of samaya. I am quite tired of Western teachers or their supporters referencing the Mahasiddhas as a way to support their rogue breaks with their own lineages.

It's possible that Reggie Ray is putting what he's been taught into practice. It's possible that he is articulating a provocative approach which has been inspired by CTR. Trungpa Rinpoche, from Crazy Wisdom:

    We go on deeper and deeper and deeper till we reach the point where there is no answer. There is not even a question. Both question and answer die simultaneously at some point. They begin to rub each other too closely and they short circuit each other in some way. At that point, we tend to give up hope of an answer, or of anything whatsoever, for that matter. We have no more hope, none whatsoever. We are purely hopeless. We could call this transcending hope, if you would like to put it in more genteel terms.

    The hopelessness is the essence of crazy wisdom. It is hopeless, utterly hopeless. It is beyond hopelessness. (Of course it would be possible, if we tried to turn that hopelessness itself into some kind of solution, to become confused again, to say the least.)

    The process is of going further in and in and in without any reference point of spirituality, without any reference point of a saviour, without any reference point of goodness or badness -- without any reference points whatsoever! Finally, we might reach the basic level of hopelessness, of transcending hope. This does not mean we end up zombies. We still have all the energies; we have all the fascination of discovery, of seeing this process unfolding and unfolding and unfolding, going on and on. This process of discovery automatically recharges itself so that we keep going deeper and deeper and deeper. This process of going deeper and deeper is the process of crazy wisdom, and it is what characterizes a saint in the Buddhist tradition.

Traleg Rinpoche talking about hopelessness:

    Trungpa Rinpoche presented a unique and contemporary approach to dealing with our neurotic tendencies. For him, a truly spiritual journey toward basic sanity has to begin with a sense of hopelessness—the recognition of the complete and utter hopelessness of our current situation. He assured his readers that they are required to undertake a major process of disillusionment in order to relinquish their belief in the existence of an external panacea that can eliminate their suffering and pain. We have to learn to live with our pain instead of hoping for something that will cause all of our hesitations, confusions, insanity, and suffering to disappear. This theme is elaborated upon in Illusion’s Game: “Creating this kind of hope is one of the most prominent features of spiritual materialism.…There are so many promises involved. So much hope is planted in your heart. This is playing on your weakness. It creates further confusion with regard to pain. You forget about the pain altogether and get involved in looking for something other than the pain. And that itself is pain.…That is what we will go through unless we understand that the basic requirement for treading the spiritual path is hopelessness.”

    To make any advance on the spiritual path, according to Trungpa Rinpoche, we have to realize that there is no savior, no such thing as a divine hand that will reach down and lift us out of our malaise. In fact, he claimed that being hopeful is simply a form of neurotic confusion, a symptom of self-deception, of not being true to oneself. A fundamental sense of fear and dread lies at the basis of this approach, for to think that there is something other than ourselves, something to be found outside ourselves, that will rescue or save us from ourselves is completely misguided, to say the least. We are compelled to pursue this kind of intervention because of the painfulness of our existence. As Trungpa says in Dharma Art: “The experience of I, me, a personal existence, ego, self, whatever you want to call it, has a sense of immense fundamental pain. You don’t want to exist, you don’t want to be, but you can’t help it.… We are allergic to ourselves; therefore, we create all kinds of sicknesses and pains.”

    Throughout his life, Trungpa Rinpoche presented the Buddhist message in a challenging and uncompromising fashion. Even the central Buddhist notions of enlightenment, buddhahood, and nirvana were not to be treated as objects to be pursued and possessed as some kind of reward for our efforts. Trusting that such transcendental realities will allay our fears of neurotic confusion and samsaric suffering is something that Trungpa Rinpoche equated with using a carrot and stick to control a donkey. As he says in Crazy Wisdom, “in spiritual materialism promises are used like a carrot held up in front of a donkey, luring him into all kinds of journeys; in transcending spiritual materialism, there is no goal.” To use another Trungpa-ism, this is equivalent to grasping the wrong end of the stick. In The Lion’s Roar, he alleges that we are driven to this kind of impulsive and humiliating behavior because “Nobody has given up hope of attaining enlightenment. Nobody has given up hope of getting out of suffering.”

    From Trungpa Rinpoche’s point of view, to be overly enthusiastic and enthralled by enlightenment is to begin our journey with the kind of subtle fallacy that guarantees bewilderment. This misconception arises because we have not confronted a genuine sense of hopelessness and we are still trying to escape our own condition for some more enchanted realm of existence. Trungpa demanded total, uncompromising honesty and authenticity with ourselves in this regard, more so than any other Buddhist teacher in the West. This requisite can be gleaned from the following assessment in his translation of The Tibetan Book of the Dead: “In other words, the whole thing is based on another way of looking at the psychological picture of ourselves in terms of a practical meditative situation. Nobody is going to save us, everything is left purely to the individual, the commitment to who we are. Gurus or spiritual friends might instigate that possibility, but fundamentally they have no function.”

Ani Pema Chödrön commenting on the mind-training slogan, abandon any hope of fruition:

    In one of the first teachings I ever heard, the teacher said, "I don't know why you came here, but I want to tell you right now that the basis of this whole teaching is that you're never going to get everything together." I felt a little like he had just slapped me in the face or thrown cold water over my head. But I've always remembered it. He said, "You're never going to get it all together." There isn't going to be some precious future time when all the loose ends will be tied up. Even though it was shocking to me, it rang true. One of the things that keeps us unhappy is this continual searching for pleasure or security, searching for a little more comfortable situation, either at the domestic level or at the spiritual level or at the level of mental peace.

All the best,

Geoff
Jnana
 
Posts: 1106
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 12:58 pm

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Adamantine » Mon Feb 14, 2011 9:00 am

Yeshe D. wrote:It's possible that Reggie Ray is putting what he's been taught into practice. It's possible that he is articulating a provocative approach which has been inspired by CTR. Trungpa Rinpoche, from Crazy Wisdom:



Those are some great quotes you left us with. However, they are nothing new in the lineages that CTR is a representative of. Many masters of the lineages from Dudjom Rinpoche to Machig Labdron all have taught that the 5 poisons can be boiled down to simply hope and fear. Hope and fear are the primary dualistic "gods" and "demons" from which all other gods and demons arise. So these statements are not in any way unique to CTR, and his students. I really think you need to put these quotes in their proper context, as I've pointed out before: CTR taught the Vajrayana and Maha Ati within the scope of the entire path, he outlined all 9 yanas in great detail: he was careful to contextualize everything so the Dharma was completely taught and transplanted here- not just part of it. Hopelessness actually functions much more effectively in the context of understanding cyclic existence, transmigration, the inevitability of karma -and the claustrophobia of knowing that the effects of all your actions will return to you-- that there is no escape from interdependence, etc. Just being agnostic about all of this creates much more space for hope to arise. Robert Thurman points out in one of his talks how most people that believe there is "nothing" after death are generally finding comfort in that, in the idea of a peaceful final slumber from which they'll never have to awake. In contrast, the understanding of the 6 realms, of the hells, the pretas, the suffering of the animal realms, and especially vajra hell - which CTR took great pains to explain many times- these create a much deeper potential for hopelessness then not believing in anything or simply not-knowing. One can say that choosing to ignore this aspect of the teachings is more hopeful even: for instance, If I was herded onto a train that I don't know the destination of- it is actually headed to a prison camp but I don't know this, and others try to tell me it is heading to a prison camp, but I won't accept this because it goes against my own feeling (which might be a type of hope), I prefer to keep the possibilities open than to assume the worst- this is a type of hope, right? Also, nowhere in any of the traditional teachings is there a sense of a savior, the only thing that can be confused with a savior is one's Lama, but they aren't a savior they're an annihilator of the "you" you're attached to, of everything you grasp at.

So I very much disagree with your interpretation of what Reggie is saying, and I don't think he is honoring the quotes that you left us with, at least not at the face value of what he is actually saying in these interviews. You do seem to be stretching these justifications a bit far, and I wonder what you're really getting at.
Last edited by Adamantine on Mon Feb 14, 2011 9:21 am, edited 1 time in total.
Contentment is the ultimate wealth;
Detachment is the final happiness. ~Sri Saraha
User avatar
Adamantine
Global Moderator
 
Posts: 2680
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 7:09 am

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Adamantine » Mon Feb 14, 2011 9:10 am

In The Lion’s Roar, he alleges that we are driven to this kind of impulsive and humiliating behavior because “Nobody has given up hope of attaining enlightenment. Nobody has given up hope of getting out of suffering.”


This is also very much aligned with the bodhisattva vows; forsaking complete enlightenment until all beings are liberated-- which has a powerful sense of endlessness to it.
Contentment is the ultimate wealth;
Detachment is the final happiness. ~Sri Saraha
User avatar
Adamantine
Global Moderator
 
Posts: 2680
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 7:09 am

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Jnana » Mon Feb 14, 2011 10:57 am

Adamantine wrote:I really think you need to put these quotes in their proper context, as I've pointed out before: CTR taught the Vajrayana and Maha Ati within the scope of the entire path, he outlined all 9 yanas in great detail: he was careful to contextualize everything so the Dharma was completely taught and transplanted here- not just part of it.

Alpha-purity -- Trungpa Rinpoche's translation of kadag -- is always prior to any notions of "Buddhism." This is why atiyoga is a complete yāna in and of itself. And alpha-purity cannot be institutionalized, domesticated, boxed and packaged. The earliest phase of atiyoga tantras -- which have been referred to as "pristine dzogchen" or "radical dzogchen" -- are far more critical and dismissive of all features of every temporal yāna than is often acknowledged. The same is true for the Indian mahāsiddha dohas. That atiyoga and mahāmudrā are at times boxed and packaged within the constraints of sequential stage practices of conceptual yānas shouldn't lull one into a false sense of security by conceptually attempting to distance the sheer immediacy of this radical view. Keith Dowman's introduction to Old Man Basking in the Sun:

    Although all such religious practices [of the eight yānas other than atiyoga] are distinguished by varying degrees of subtlety and sophistication, they are all goal-oriented, and as such a conceptual distinction is implicit between what is and what should be, between samsara and nirvana, sentient beings and buddha. Striving to attain a spiritual objective is implied in all these approaches and it is here that Dzogchen defines itself outside the frame of religion and tantra-yoga. Dzogchen stresses the undeniable fact that any goal-oriented conscientious endeavor assumes a result in a future that by definition never comes and thereby precludes attainment in the present moment. Thus there can be no liberation until the drive to attainment is relinquished. In this important sense, every path of religious striving is a dead end and represents a deviation from the natural gnosis of pure mind, 'the heart of the matter'....

    It is therefore an error to assume that one is 'not ready' for Dzogchen because of a lack of study and intellectual preparation. Initiatory experience is present in this very moment and nothing can be done to facilitate its advent. Any kind of preparation or fore-practice muddies the waters in its assumption of a goal to be reached. Access to the clarity and the zing of reality, on the contrary, is more likely to be found in an innocent pristine mind that has not been conditioned by the cultural and religious assumptions of a 'sophisticated' tradition. Purity of karma, putative rebirth, guru-relationship, degree of meditation-concentration, facility in visualization, levels of attainment, and so on, are all issues pertinent to acceptance and success within a hierarchical cult wherein a particular ideal form of social and psychological behavior is a goal to be achieved; but to the formless experience of Dzogchen such considerations have no relevance. Striving in any kind of preparatory endeavor is an exercise in shooting oneself in the foot, or at least running after a mirage. In fact, to reach the point of relaxation in the moment that provides intimation of gnosis, non-action is the sole precept.

    This perspective in radical Dzogchen is exclusive to those who have no need or inclination to exchange their inbred cultural norms and mores for those belonging to a more exotic or 'spiritual' tradition, or to reject their cultural legacy and educational conditioning in an effort to change their psychological make-up. Recognition of our lived experience, just as it is, in its miraculous immediacy and beauty, without any yen for change, is the praxis of radical Dzogchen, and belief in personal development and improvement, progress towards a social ideal, moral evolution of the species, and so on, is deviation from the pure pleasure of the unthought timeless moment.

Is this expression radical? Yes. Is it potentially dangerous? It certainly is. And this is precisely why it is commonly considered skillful within the institutionalized traditions to present this view to students after some degree of ethical conduct and conventional altruism have been instilled. Nevertheless, the radical immediacy of self-occurring gnosis (rangjung yeshe) cannot be meted out piecemeal.

Further, Ray has taught the Śrāvakayāna and Mahāyāna according to the presentation style of CTR, and there is no reason to believe that he doesn't continue to do so.

Adamantine wrote:Hopelessness actually functions much more effectively in the context of understanding cyclic existence, transmigration, the inevitability of karma -and the claustrophobia of knowing that the effects of all your actions will return to you-- that there is no escape from interdependence, etc. Just being agnostic about all of this creates much more space for hope to arise.

Now it seems that you're attempting to qualify hopelessness in order to blunt the cutting edge. According to CTR "hopelessness is the essence of crazy wisdom."

Adamantine wrote:Robert Thurman points out in one of his talks how most people that believe there is "nothing" after death are generally finding comfort in that, in the idea of a peaceful final slumber from which they'll never have to awake.

Ray isn't promoting nihilism.

Adamantine wrote:So I very much disagree with your interpretation of what Reggie is saying, and I don't think he is honoring the quotes that you left us with, at least not at the face value of what he is actually saying in these interviews. You do seem to be stretching these justifications a bit far, and I wonder what you're really getting at.

Reggie Ray and Ani Pema are likely to have a more comprehensive understanding of what CTR was pointing to than you do.

All the best,

Geoff
Jnana
 
Posts: 1106
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 12:58 pm

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Mr. G » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:41 pm

tobes wrote:
mr. gordo wrote:
tobes wrote:All he's saying there is that the phenomenology of our own experience is only given to ourselves; and that it contains a richness, multiplicity and potentiality which far eludes categorisation ~ be it in religious doctrines or otherwise.


tobes, I know you're a sharp guy, but you're a postmodern-deconstructionist Buddhist apologist.



:lol: Fair enough. That's hilarious and probably quite accurate. I often get stuck when people ask me what I am....now I have something solid to offer them.

:namaste:


I'm glad you knew I was half-joking. :smile: :namaste:

tobes wrote:
mr. gordo wrote:It would be more dharmic if he actually taught Dharma. If he hasn't attained the path where he has direct perception of rebirth, then why wouldn't he just say that the sutras state there is rebirth and leave it at that? If this his attempt at skillful means in propagating Buddhism, perhaps it is not very skillful.


Well maybe, maybe not.

We can't really determine what's skillful and what's unskillful unless we know who he's teaching and what will help liberate them.

:namaste:


Yes, of course I can’t know if Ray, or any other teacher is being skillful or not. However, the ambiguity (or lack thereof) brings more questions than answers.
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
User avatar
Mr. G
 
Posts: 4098
Joined: Wed Jan 20, 2010 6:36 am
Location: Spaceship Earth

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Mr. G » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:58 pm

Yeshe D. wrote:
mr. gordo wrote:I've only had the chance to read the Davidson books Geoff. Could you summarize your point on how this relates to Ray? Are you saying that Ray's revelations are equivalent to that of Guru P and Naropa? Or just that Ray's revelations are no more or less substantial in that they are personal revelations as were Guru P's and Naropas?

I'm not comparing Ray to any mahāsiddha. What I'm suggesting is that there is historical context regarding the narratives of visionary revelation and faith-based claims of transmission purity, which can be taken into consideration when discussing the development of vajrayāna. From this perspective there is no need to believe that all of these teachings arrived from on high as complete systems. Rather, they developed over time, just as the Mahāyāna developed over time.

All the best,

Geoff


Understood, thank you.

Yeshe D. wrote:
mr. gordo wrote:Ray does not believe in rebirth because he defines "enlightenment" as being equal to physical death. How is this not adharmic?

Ray is not denying a postmortem continuum. What he seems to be implying is that this continuum may very well be much more profound, dynamic, and multi-dimensional than what is capable of being recorded in any text.

Also, regarding "enlightenment," there are Buddhist versions of parinirvāṇa as a complete end -- upon death an arhat has reached that end and will never be reborn again. And there are also versions of this dharma which maintain that if a layperson attains the arhat fruition and doesn't take full monastic ordination s/he will die in short order. It seems that Ray is critiquing the notion of annihilation, proposing instead the view of "journey without goal," and the mind training of "abandon any hope of fruition."

All the best,

Geoff


Yes, I agree, regarding "enlightenment," there are Buddhist versions of parinirvāṇa as a complete end -- upon death an arhat has reached that end and will never be reborn again. And there are also versions of this dharma which maintain that if a layperson attains the arhat fruition and doesn't take full monastic ordination s/he will die in short order.

I really can’t say I agree that what you state is what Ray is talking about. In all honesty, the only person that knows what Ray is talking about is Ray.
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
User avatar
Mr. G
 
Posts: 4098
Joined: Wed Jan 20, 2010 6:36 am
Location: Spaceship Earth

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Mr. G » Mon Feb 14, 2011 3:04 pm

These are all great quotes. :twothumbsup:

Journey Of Self-Discovery Leads Man To Realization He Doesn't Care

Yeshe D. wrote:
Adamantine wrote:I think this betrays your bias in how you're interpreting Ray. I personally find that with my teachers, within the lineage I practice, there is nothing boxed and packaged, --but it is very traditional. The tradition is the container for the essence of the lineage, which is the living realization passed from master to student over generations.... People putting what they are taught into practice, doing serious retreat, and keeping pure lineage. This is not a proselytizing tradition, but it is one that takes purity very seriously. Purity of perception, purity of logic, purity of the lineage, purity of the teachings, and purity of samaya. I am quite tired of Western teachers or their supporters referencing the Mahasiddhas as a way to support their rogue breaks with their own lineages.

It's possible that Reggie Ray is putting what he's been taught into practice. It's possible that he is articulating a provocative approach which has been inspired by CTR. Trungpa Rinpoche, from Crazy Wisdom:

    We go on deeper and deeper and deeper till we reach the point where there is no answer. There is not even a question. Both question and answer die simultaneously at some point. They begin to rub each other too closely and they short circuit each other in some way. At that point, we tend to give up hope of an answer, or of anything whatsoever, for that matter. We have no more hope, none whatsoever. We are purely hopeless. We could call this transcending hope, if you would like to put it in more genteel terms.

    The hopelessness is the essence of crazy wisdom. It is hopeless, utterly hopeless. It is beyond hopelessness. (Of course it would be possible, if we tried to turn that hopelessness itself into some kind of solution, to become confused again, to say the least.)

    The process is of going further in and in and in without any reference point of spirituality, without any reference point of a saviour, without any reference point of goodness or badness -- without any reference points whatsoever! Finally, we might reach the basic level of hopelessness, of transcending hope. This does not mean we end up zombies. We still have all the energies; we have all the fascination of discovery, of seeing this process unfolding and unfolding and unfolding, going on and on. This process of discovery automatically recharges itself so that we keep going deeper and deeper and deeper. This process of going deeper and deeper is the process of crazy wisdom, and it is what characterizes a saint in the Buddhist tradition.

Traleg Rinpoche talking about hopelessness:

    Trungpa Rinpoche presented a unique and contemporary approach to dealing with our neurotic tendencies. For him, a truly spiritual journey toward basic sanity has to begin with a sense of hopelessness—the recognition of the complete and utter hopelessness of our current situation. He assured his readers that they are required to undertake a major process of disillusionment in order to relinquish their belief in the existence of an external panacea that can eliminate their suffering and pain. We have to learn to live with our pain instead of hoping for something that will cause all of our hesitations, confusions, insanity, and suffering to disappear. This theme is elaborated upon in Illusion’s Game: “Creating this kind of hope is one of the most prominent features of spiritual materialism.…There are so many promises involved. So much hope is planted in your heart. This is playing on your weakness. It creates further confusion with regard to pain. You forget about the pain altogether and get involved in looking for something other than the pain. And that itself is pain.…That is what we will go through unless we understand that the basic requirement for treading the spiritual path is hopelessness.”

    To make any advance on the spiritual path, according to Trungpa Rinpoche, we have to realize that there is no savior, no such thing as a divine hand that will reach down and lift us out of our malaise. In fact, he claimed that being hopeful is simply a form of neurotic confusion, a symptom of self-deception, of not being true to oneself. A fundamental sense of fear and dread lies at the basis of this approach, for to think that there is something other than ourselves, something to be found outside ourselves, that will rescue or save us from ourselves is completely misguided, to say the least. We are compelled to pursue this kind of intervention because of the painfulness of our existence. As Trungpa says in Dharma Art: “The experience of I, me, a personal existence, ego, self, whatever you want to call it, has a sense of immense fundamental pain. You don’t want to exist, you don’t want to be, but you can’t help it.… We are allergic to ourselves; therefore, we create all kinds of sicknesses and pains.”

    Throughout his life, Trungpa Rinpoche presented the Buddhist message in a challenging and uncompromising fashion. Even the central Buddhist notions of enlightenment, buddhahood, and nirvana were not to be treated as objects to be pursued and possessed as some kind of reward for our efforts. Trusting that such transcendental realities will allay our fears of neurotic confusion and samsaric suffering is something that Trungpa Rinpoche equated with using a carrot and stick to control a donkey. As he says in Crazy Wisdom, “in spiritual materialism promises are used like a carrot held up in front of a donkey, luring him into all kinds of journeys; in transcending spiritual materialism, there is no goal.” To use another Trungpa-ism, this is equivalent to grasping the wrong end of the stick. In The Lion’s Roar, he alleges that we are driven to this kind of impulsive and humiliating behavior because “Nobody has given up hope of attaining enlightenment. Nobody has given up hope of getting out of suffering.”

    From Trungpa Rinpoche’s point of view, to be overly enthusiastic and enthralled by enlightenment is to begin our journey with the kind of subtle fallacy that guarantees bewilderment. This misconception arises because we have not confronted a genuine sense of hopelessness and we are still trying to escape our own condition for some more enchanted realm of existence. Trungpa demanded total, uncompromising honesty and authenticity with ourselves in this regard, more so than any other Buddhist teacher in the West. This requisite can be gleaned from the following assessment in his translation of The Tibetan Book of the Dead: “In other words, the whole thing is based on another way of looking at the psychological picture of ourselves in terms of a practical meditative situation. Nobody is going to save us, everything is left purely to the individual, the commitment to who we are. Gurus or spiritual friends might instigate that possibility, but fundamentally they have no function.”

Ani Pema Chödrön commenting on the mind-training slogan, abandon any hope of fruition:

    In one of the first teachings I ever heard, the teacher said, "I don't know why you came here, but I want to tell you right now that the basis of this whole teaching is that you're never going to get everything together." I felt a little like he had just slapped me in the face or thrown cold water over my head. But I've always remembered it. He said, "You're never going to get it all together." There isn't going to be some precious future time when all the loose ends will be tied up. Even though it was shocking to me, it rang true. One of the things that keeps us unhappy is this continual searching for pleasure or security, searching for a little more comfortable situation, either at the domestic level or at the spiritual level or at the level of mental peace.

All the best,

Geoff
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
User avatar
Mr. G
 
Posts: 4098
Joined: Wed Jan 20, 2010 6:36 am
Location: Spaceship Earth

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby tamdrin » Mon Feb 14, 2011 4:36 pm

Every western teacher hasa there own little personal spin or twist or way of packaging the dharma or whatever... I see it in at least 90% of the western teachers including Ray, Dowman, Roach. etc the list goes on and on..
tamdrin
 
Posts: 291
Joined: Wed Nov 10, 2010 7:01 pm

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Mr. G » Mon Feb 14, 2011 4:42 pm

tamdrin wrote:Every western teacher hasa there own little personal spin or twist or way of packaging the dharma or whatever... I see it in at least 90% of the western teachers including Ray, Dowman, Roach. etc the list goes on and on..


Let's not bring Roach into this. He's not even in the same ballpark.
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
User avatar
Mr. G
 
Posts: 4098
Joined: Wed Jan 20, 2010 6:36 am
Location: Spaceship Earth

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby tamdrin » Mon Feb 14, 2011 4:49 pm

mr. gordo wrote:
tamdrin wrote:Every western teacher hasa there own little personal spin or twist or way of packaging the dharma or whatever... I see it in at least 90% of the western teachers including Ray, Dowman, Roach. etc the list goes on and on..


Let's not bring Roach into this. He's not even in the same ballpark.



Sure he is. This guy Ray is a self proclaimed "vajra master". Some things these teachers say are in accordance with the teachings some are their own interpretations.. Just hearing a video from Ray.. where is says yada yada.. "This is why the Tantric Tradition in Tibet emphasizes life in the world" - sorry but no it didn't.. not at all.. thats what you emphasize.
tamdrin
 
Posts: 291
Joined: Wed Nov 10, 2010 7:01 pm

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Mr. G » Mon Feb 14, 2011 4:55 pm

tamdrin wrote:
Sure he is. This guy Ray is a self proclaimed "vajra master".


Yes, I agree. This part is true.
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
User avatar
Mr. G
 
Posts: 4098
Joined: Wed Jan 20, 2010 6:36 am
Location: Spaceship Earth

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Jnana » Mon Feb 14, 2011 5:18 pm

mr. gordo wrote:These are all great quotes. :twothumbsup:

Journey Of Self-Discovery Leads Man To Realization He Doesn't Care

Well, CTR also taught that hopelessness and selflessness are connected to basic goodness and the genuine heart of sadness:

    The genuine heart of sadness comes from feeling that your nonexistent heart is full. You would like to spill your heart's blood, give your heart to others.... Real fearlessness is the product of tenderness. It comes from letting the world tickle your heart, your raw and beautiful heart. You are willing to open up, without resistance or shyness, and face the world. You are willing to share your heart with others.

In a Buddhadharma context, this is expressed through a willingness to communicate, to be in communion, instead of succumbing to any sort of apathy or laziness. There is an appreciation of richness, energy, and a willingness to continually open.

All the best,

Geoff
Jnana
 
Posts: 1106
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 12:58 pm

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Silent Bob » Mon Feb 14, 2011 5:41 pm

BeatDeadHorse.gif
BeatDeadHorse.gif (129.04 KiB) Viewed 704 times
"All the sublime teachings, so profound--to throw away one and then grab yet another will not bear even a single fruit. Persevere, therefore, in simply one."
--Dudjom Rinpoche, "Nectar for the Hearts of Fortunate Disciples. Song No. 8"
Silent Bob
 
Posts: 238
Joined: Sun Jun 06, 2010 2:12 am

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby tamdrin » Mon Feb 14, 2011 5:57 pm

Im not really buying Keith Dowmans approach "radical Dzogchen either".. It just sounds silly and one can be assured that by following such teachers one will effectively be going nowhere...
tamdrin
 
Posts: 291
Joined: Wed Nov 10, 2010 7:01 pm

Re: Dr. Reginald Ray

Postby Jnana » Mon Feb 14, 2011 6:05 pm

tamdrin wrote:Im not really buying Keith Dowmans approach "radical Dzogchen either".. It just sounds silly and one can be assured that by following such teachers one will effectively be going nowhere...

You should follow whichever teachers you have confidence in. Nevertheless, there is no "Keith Dowman approach." What he has to say on the subject accords with the Atiyoga tantras and the teachings of Tibetan lamas.

All the best,

Geoff
Jnana
 
Posts: 1106
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 12:58 pm

PreviousNext

Return to Open Dharma

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: JKhedrup, Konchog1, Lotus_Bitch, MSNbot Media, Nemo, yan kong and 21 guests

>