Vajra Hell

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Vajra Hell

Postby padma norbu » Sun May 29, 2011 1:46 am

So, I was reading "Rainbow Painting" by Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche and he suddenly brings up a point he says he hates to tell us, but it's true: a Vajrayana practitioner is like a snake in a tube; he can either go up or down, not left or right. He goes on to explain that the powerful blessing of Vajrayana carries with it some powerful consequences if samaya is not maintained. He says if broken samaya is not repaired within 3 years, then there's nothing that can be done and you are destined for a lower rebirth.

I found this quite shocking and disappointing. So, I did some Googling and found a list of samaya from rigpa wiki, printed it out and took a good look at it. Really, there's nothing on that list that should be too difficult to maintain. The problem is, I'm pretty sure I've already gone more than 3 years without repairing my broken samaya.

I don't know what to believe/follow at the moment. I am a student of Chogyal Namkhai Norbu's. I've emailed him occasionally about some problems and, when I thought they were big deals, he would respond with something very comforting:

"You don't worry. You do your best."

And he didn't say much more than that! I found it slightly perplexing at first because I was hoping to get some really specific advice I suppose about how to fix my mind/attitudes/whatever, but after some thought I came to find it very comforting, like I said. It also kind of made me feel :rolling: like I was blowing everything out of proportion.

Well, I don't know if I was blowing everything out of proportion. I was having issues stemming from alcohol use and I am still working on this today. In fact, this is the main samaya I've broken, along with probably causing problems among my vajra brothers and sisters (although this was very early on and hopefully I fixed that with one of the ganapujas I attended).

And then I stumbled on a video of Namkhai Norbu from an outtake of My Reincarnation and he said (paraphrasing): "Some say if you get drunk, you go to hell because you have broken samaya. [ChNN laughs]... But, if you drink with awareness, you haven't broken samaya." (If someone knows the actual quote, please correct me. I know that's not quite right, but it's something like that.) This got me to thinking... well, I certainly have gotten drunk and lost awareness, so I can't lie to myself and pretend I drank like a mahasiddha or something... Then, I thought of something else: while Namkhai Norbu's advice to me was seemingly very simple and comforting, perhaps it was much deeper than I had realized.

Here is how I interpret his words now, many years after the fact:
"You don't worry" = worrying accomplishes nothing. Relax.
"You do your best" = you really do your best.

This is not just like a father giving his son a pep talk before a little league game, which is kind of how it seemed before. His advice was simple and direct, but I think I took it the wrong way before. True, I was adding to my problems by worrying about them, but I never really did my best trying to conquer these problems.

Over the years, I've taken solace in the fact that we're only human and I see a lecture where some lama will admit to still getting angry at times, etc. so I try not to beat myself up over my failings, but last night I got freaking DRUNK as hell and ended up doing some very unsavory things. I had vowed not to drink and then my boss took me out. It really sucked because on top of ruining my diet, breaking samaya and spending a crapload of money, I acted unmindfully and created some negative karma, broke the hell out of my samaya and destroyed my peace of mind for at least the next few days. The only good thing that came of it is that the night has made a powerful impression on me and I believe I now (finally) have a realistic fear of alchol. I am determined to quit except at ganapuja. I have no idea how to drink mindfully.

Are there any at-home ways I can repair my samaya truly and reliably? Also, does anyone know of a mantra or practice that will really help with addictive tendencies? I don't think of myself as an alcoholic, but it's pretty ridiculous that I keep vowing to quit and then end up going off the rails on a crazy train a week or two later. Definitely have a problem about maintaining awareness after 1 drink. It simply seems impossible to remember not to get drunk once my judgement has been impared by that first drink or two. I always start out thinking I've got it under control and next thing I know, I'm bombed. So, anyway, I'm vowing not to touch it and I'm looking for some supportive practice (if there is anything) that might help me to not be tempted to have that first drink.

I know... guru yoga, right? I don't think I'm as good at that as many of you, so that's why I was looking for a mantra or something. I figured anything might work (like Sinhamukha, Tara, Vajra Breathing, etc.) but if there's something specific for addictive patterns, even better. Since I already do the other stuff and here I am... :cheers: :toilet:

Also, what are your thoughts on this Vajra Hell?

Thanks. BTW, this is my first post. Delightful, eh? :emb:
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Sun May 29, 2011 2:09 am

Best advice: "You don't worry. You do your best."

Drinking: I drank heavily for years without being able to stop the desire. And then after taking the 5 precepts (from a Rinpoche) I never had the desire again and that has been about 20 years ago. So, have you taken that precept?

Vajra Hell: It sounds like you are already in hell. But if you deny you are there, there is no reason to leave. So don't deny it, just look for a ladder and climb out. Like the man said, "You don't worry. You do your best."
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby Pero » Sun May 29, 2011 2:26 am

padmanorbu wrote:Are there any at-home ways I can repair my samaya truly and reliably? Also, does anyone know of a mantra or practice that will really help with addictive tendencies?

For purifying samaya in DC there is Ganapuja which you've already mentioned. There is also Narag Tongtrug (you need the transmission), which is a nice Vajrasattva purification practice, though a bit complicated to learn. And Rinpoche's awesome Longsal purification of the six lokas combined with Vajrasattva practice. And the 25 Spaces of Samantabhadra (Longsal, Vima Nyingthig or Changhub Dorje's) is also a great purification practice. Several of the 25 mantras are related with overcoming attachments. However, just reciting some mantras alone won't do everything for you.

I'm not really sold on the three years thing. If I remember right, it's a Nyingma thing, Sarma schools don't have this limitation. (or was it the opposite?)

I don't think of myself as an alcoholic, but it's pretty ridiculous that I keep vowing to quit and then end up going off the rails on a crazy train a week or two later.

Hehe yes, I know that well from personal experience. :rolling:

Definitely have a problem about maintaining awareness after 1 drink. It simply seems impossible to remember not to get drunk once my judgement has been impared by that first drink or two.

Yes then it's probably better you don't drink.

So, anyway, I'm vowing not to touch it and I'm looking for some supportive practice (if there is anything) that might help me to not be tempted to have that first drink.

Just plain old presence aka mindfulness. Try to remember the consequences getting drunk brought you. Of course you have to care about it too. Just being aware of the faults won't be sufficient. You could also try to avoid going out if it's that much of a problem.

They say a burnt hand is the best teacher. Unfortunately, some of us have to burn their hand a hundred times before we learn (ongoing personal experience hehe).
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby padma norbu » Sun May 29, 2011 2:35 am

PadmaVonSamba wrote:Best advice: "You don't worry. You do your best."

Drinking: I drank heavily for years without being able to stop the desire. And then after taking the 5 precepts (from a Rinpoche) I never had the desire again and that has been about 20 years ago. So, have you taken that precept?


I have no idea. I first received transmission from Namkhai Norbu and he does not talk a lot about what you can and can't do, from what I've heard. Then, a few years later, Lama Tsering Everest of the Chagdud Gonpa lineage was in town and I went to her weekend retreat. On the last day, we took refuge. I was a little worried about what my commitments were supposed to be, but too embarrassed to raise my hand and ask. I asked a guy next to me about what samaya I'm taking and what happens if I break samaya and he looked at me like I was an idiot and said, "Well, do you plan on breaking samaya?" And then another woman chimed in and basically they both reassured me while making me feel foolish at the same time. I thought to myself, well as a Dzogchen student I'm supposed to be free and beyond limitations, so I can take refuge if I want and Namkhai Norbu already said that his practices fulfill all other samaya commitments and he was my first teacher, so why not?" If taking refuge generally includes the 5 precepts, then yes I took the precepts with Lama Tsering Everest. Although, it is strange because it is very common for Chagdud Gonpa members to go out and have a few drinks. They probably don't get plastered, but they certainly don't abstain from fermented drinks.
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby Pero » Sun May 29, 2011 2:45 am

padmanorbu wrote:I have no idea. I first received transmission from Namkhai Norbu and he does not talk a lot about what you can and can't do, from what I've heard.

He often says that if you can't control yourself, then you take a vow.

I thought to myself, well as a Dzogchen student I'm supposed to be free and beyond limitations, so I can take refuge if I want and Namkhai Norbu already said that his practices fulfill all other samaya commitments and he was my first teacher, so why not?"

First of all, taking refuge has no samaya obligations (and that guy's response was pretty weird haha). Second, you had already taken refuge, just not formally. And third, practicing Guru Yoga fulfills all commitments.
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby padma norbu » Sun May 29, 2011 3:37 am

Pero wrote:
padmanorbu wrote:I have no idea. I first received transmission from Namkhai Norbu and he does not talk a lot about what you can and can't do, from what I've heard.

He often says that if you can't control yourself, then you take a vow.


I have heard him say that. When I have heard him say that, I always felt like he was just saying taking vows is optional since he doesn't spend a lot of time telling people what their samaya commitments are. I think the only time I've heard him mention samaya is prior to saying that he only asks one thing of his students: do guru yoga.

And third, practicing Guru Yoga fulfills all commitments.

He also says it is the best purification, right? Along with Song of the Vajra and OM AH HUNG/vajra breathing? This has always stuck in my head, so I always think it's easiest to just stick to a few practices and why not do the best practices if I'm going to practice, right? Perhaps I just need to do more guru yoga, sov, vajra breathing and short tuns and remember just not have that first drink. I think I can do it. Taking a vow, though...? Scary if breaking it means going to hell.

This just made me wonder what happend to Chogyam Trungpa, and it seems he's doing alright: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chokyi_Sengay
Which is good to hear. I hope he stays away from the alcohol this time.
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby catmoon » Sun May 29, 2011 7:07 am

The previous post refers to Chogyam Trungpa and the gives a link to an article on Choseng Trungpa. These are two different people; in fact Chogyam was Choseng's predecessor.
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby Pero » Sun May 29, 2011 12:48 pm

padma norbu wrote:I have heard him say that. When I have heard him say that, I always felt like he was just saying taking vows is optional since he doesn't spend a lot of time telling people what their samaya commitments are. I think the only time I've heard him mention samaya is prior to saying that he only asks one thing of his students: do guru yoga.

Samayas are not the same as vows. Samaya really isn't optional.
As for vows, I suppose you could say they're optional, but if you can't control yourself then vows are a much better option than continuing with negative actions.
During his teachings Rinpoche only sometimes mentions the 27 samayas, but doesn't elaborate. In general he just asks to not argue and collaborate with vajra family, do guru yoga and be present and act with awareness according to circumstance (under acting with awareness you could put not getting drunk). edit: And to not speak about secret practices with non-practitioners.
.
I always think it's easiest to just stick to a few practices and why not do the best practices if I'm going to practice, right?

I guess so, however what is best is something relative, it can be different from person to person and can change from time to time.

Perhaps I just need to do more guru yoga, sov, vajra breathing and short tuns and remember just not have that first drink. I think I can do it. Taking a vow, though...? Scary if breaking it means going to hell.

It's said that Vajrayana practitioners who get drunk go to hell, Vajrayana practitioners are those with samaya. You have received samaya when you received teachings from Rinpoche. If you can really just be mindful and not take that first drink then you don't need a vow, but if you can't then it's probably better you do.

I'm afraid that doing whatever practice, without being present in the post meditation session, will not bring that much change to your daily life. Because a practice session is a limited time, for example if you practice for one hour, there still 23 hours left in the day.

This just made me wonder what happend to Chogyam Trungpa, and it seems he's doing alright: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chokyi_Sengay
Which is good to hear. I hope he stays away from the alcohol this time.

I think we can't really compare ourselves to someone considered to be a Mahasiddha.
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby padma norbu » Sun May 29, 2011 2:36 pm

catmoon wrote:The previous post refers to Chogyam Trungpa and the gives a link to an article on Choseng Trungpa. These are two different people; in fact Chogyam was Choseng's predecessor.


Haha, I was referring to the fact that Choseng Trungpa is Chogyam Trungpa's reincarnation. This Choseng Trungpa is was born in 1980 and recognized by Tai Situ Rinpoche in 1991.
Last line of this article says:
"In 2001, he met for the first time with Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, the son of his previous incarnation, Chögyam Trungpa."
Here's the link again: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chokyi_Sengay

And the last line of Chogyam Trungpa's article says:
"1989 - The child recognized as his reincarnation, Chokyi Sengay, is born in Derge, Tibet; recognized two years later by Tai Situ Rinpoche." Here's that link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ch%C3%B6gyam_Trungpa
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby padma norbu » Sun May 29, 2011 3:03 pm

Pero wrote:
padma norbu wrote:I have heard him say that. When I have heard him say that, I always felt like he was just saying taking vows is optional since he doesn't spend a lot of time telling people what their samaya commitments are. I think the only time I've heard him mention samaya is prior to saying that he only asks one thing of his students: do guru yoga.

Samayas are not the same as vows. Samaya really isn't optional.
As for vows, I suppose you could say they're optional, but if you can't control yourself then vows are a much better option than continuing with negative actions.
During his teachings Rinpoche only sometimes mentions the 27 samayas, but doesn't elaborate. In general he just asks to not argue and collaborate with vajra family, do guru yoga and be present and act with awareness according to circumstance (under acting with awareness you could put not getting drunk). edit: And to not speak about secret practices with non-practitioners.

Aren't those samaya these?
1. I take the commitment to never explain, learn, meditate or practice Dzogchen on the basis of self-interest,
Nor shall my students and my friends ever do that,
Otherwise I will not trust them.
2. I take the commitment to never explain, discuss, write about, meditate or practice Dzogchen For the sake of profit...
3. I take the commitment to never teach a single word of the profound meaning for the sake of honour...
4. I take the commitment to never uphold, preserve and develop the Dzogchen teaching for the sake of fame...
5. I take the commitment to never do any activity for the Dzogchen teaching, not even the size of a sesame seed for the sake of self-importance...
6. I take the commitment to never do any activity for developing the Dzogchen teaching for the sake of competitiveness...
7. I take the commitment to never do any activity for the Dzogchen teaching for the sake of pride...
8. I take the commitment to never do any activity for the Dzogchen teaching for the sake of jealousy...
9. I take the commitment to never do any activity for the Dzogchen teaching for the sake of attachment...

9 x 3 = 27
9 = ChNN's commitment about practicing
9 = students' commitment about practicing
9 = ChNN's commitment in relation to students' samaya

Pero wrote:I think we can't really compare ourselves to someone considered to be a Mahasiddha.


I wasn't at all. The conversation just made me think of him because he broke his monk's vows and became drunk all the time. I didn't really expect to see he has a recognized reincarnation!

Thanks for your thoughts. It was helpful to get another perspective and see that I was mistaken in my prior attitude that there was "wiggle room" about this. Like I said, I already realized I misinterpreted Namkhai Norbu's "you don't worry, you do your best" advice. So, I know what I have to do now. If I don't follow through, it's just blatantly breaking samaya. So, I guess I've got to get myself to a ganapuja (haven't been to one for a while) and just take a personal vow to abstain from alcohol...

This is good. Taking a vow makes it very simple, very cut and dried. Now I don't have to put much more thought into it unless I really start fiending to get drunk. I guess that's why I was looking for some kind of anti-addiction practice mantra (or something). To give me something to do in the moment where I feel a great desire... because I am surrounded by drinkers everywhere and I know the temptation will arise.

BTW, "being able to control yourself" and "being mindful" while drinking, we're obviously not talking about rigpa here, right? That's hard enough to maintain throughout the day and I would imagine especially so at a social event after some drinks. Namkhai Norbu mentioned drinking while being mindful you will not go to hell. This just means in general being aware of your thoughts and your actions, not getting lost in thought or swept away by emotions?
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Sun May 29, 2011 3:06 pm

If you have taken the 5 precepts, you will know it. It is a formal ceremony.

A lot of people in the west get all sorts of "empowerments" and I use that term in quotation marks because sometimes they mean a student is now committed to do an actual practice, and sometimes they are given more like blessings.

Many great teachers, Khenpos, Rinpoches and so forth give these to large gatherings of people knowing full well that most of them are not going to begin doing a specific practice associated with the empowerment. They might later, or maybe not at all. Do you think a good teacher would do this to so many people if it was going to send them to a Vajra Hell?

Samaya is like getting married. If your teacher and you have a samaya (and it is a mutual thing) you are making a commitment to your teacher and your teacher is making a commitment to you. If you break your marriage vows, maybe your spouse will be forgiving and maybe not. But we are not perfect. If we were we would already be enlightened Buddhas. Don't you think your teacher knows this? Of course he does. Don't you think he can tell that you have addiction issues?

His advice to you was right. But you have to take responsibility for your own life and work hard to fix it. My teacher has said that Vajra means indestructible, like a metal vase that, if you drop it and it gets a dent, can be hammered back into shape again.

Don't think it is that easy to break Samaya just because you are not perfect!!!
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby padma norbu » Sun May 29, 2011 4:43 pm

PadmaVonSamba wrote: My teacher has said that Vajra means indestructible, like a metal vase that, if you drop it and it gets a dent, can be hammered back into shape again.


I just recently read this:

As it is said: Tantric Buddhists are in the position of a snake inside a bamboo tube; one hole faces up to the Dharmakaya, the other down toward Vajra Hell. There are only two options -- up or down; no in-between. Keeping samaya (commitment) determines which way the snake slides.

In Tibetan Buddhism, it is generally held that the paths of the Hinayana, Mahayana, Vajrayana are a progression.

"There is an analogy concerning three pots: the "hinayana" vows are like a clay pot--you drop it once, it's broken ... gotta get a new pot!

The Bodhisattva vows are like a brass pot -- drop it, and it'll take some work to hammer out the dents, but it's fixable, with some elbow grease and sweat ... and maybe you may have to take it back to a "licensed pot-mender!"

The Vajrayana vows are like a pure gold pitcher. Since this type of pot is made of the softest metal, it is the one most susceptible to dents! [It must be handled very carefully. ]

Realistically, for those who have truly received the Highest vows, they are all constantly breaking them ... Well, maybe most of them, at least. These Anuttarayoga vows are really only properly attempted in a closed retreat, I would say -- at least until one has achieved a solid experience in maintaining divine pride. ... .

Of course, for those who wish to dispense with all vows, there's the invisible pot of the Mahamudra and/or Dzokchen ... no pitcher to even worry about! Find your water at the source ... ."

~ CB, the Kagyu email list, who adds, "May we keep whatever vows are appropriate to us."

From this link: http://www.khandro.net/TibBud%20_vajrayana.htm
^ lots of interesting and somewhat contradictory ideas expressed there...

PadmaVonSamba wrote:Don't think it is that easy to break Samaya just because you are not perfect!!!
Well, the way it was explained to me and what I was pretty happy with was the way it was explained to me by Lama Tsering Everest. She said breaking samaya is really something much more than personal failings. Breaking samaya means a change of heart, a rejection of the path, really turning your back on the path. So, you know, in the past, if I got drunk and woke up the next day feeling guilty, I would just tell myself there's no sense compounding my problems. Guilt is a useless emotion, just get back on the path. But, I realize there's a difference here when it's something consistent which you have control over (ie. the decision whether or not to drink something which you know ruins your mindfulness and judgement); continuing to do this over and over really is almost like turning your back on the path. It's like saying, "yeah, the path is important to me, but wellllll, so is being careless and having mindless fun which may or may not end in disaster." The two really are not compatible, so the choice of booze over mindfulness IS turning your back on the path, I think.

Now that I'm realizing this, like I said, I hope I haven't done irreparable damage. I really don't like what I read about "confessing and repairing broken samaya within three years or you're doomed to a lower rebirth" in Rainbow Painting. I really respect Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche and that's what makes it so frightening to consider. I don't know if I repaired my samaya by doing guru yoga or what, but I hope so. Hopefully, as you seem to indicate, the dharma protectors recognize when a person is ignorant. Now that I am not so ignorant, I hope they also recognize when a person is weak (in case I screw up again at some point in the future; not planning on it, but realistically the odds are against me here...)
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby Pero » Sun May 29, 2011 6:08 pm

padma norbu wrote:Aren't those samaya these?

No, those are Rinpoche's personal vows, we should check ourselves according to them too though.
I was talking about these: 27 Root Samayas. Though mostly they're considered Dzogchen samayas, I remember Rinpoche remarking they're more related or originating from Anuyoga.

I wasn't at all. The conversation just made me think of him because he broke his monk's vows and became drunk all the time. I didn't really expect to see he has a recognized reincarnation!

He wasn't a monk and he himself was already considered a reincarnation too.

So, I guess I've got to get myself to a ganapuja (haven't been to one for a while) and just take a personal vow to abstain from alcohol...

You can also try doing a ganapuja by yourself.

I guess that's why I was looking for some kind of anti-addiction practice mantra (or something).

There are no magick fixes.

To give me something to do in the moment where I feel a great desire... because I am surrounded by drinkers everywhere and I know the temptation will arise.

Be mindful in that moment. That is more important than any mantra.

BTW, "being able to control yourself" and "being mindful" while drinking, we're obviously not talking about rigpa here, right?

Right.

Namkhai Norbu mentioned drinking while being mindful you will not go to hell.

If you would be mindful while drinking, you wouldn't get drunk so there would be no need to worry about hell.

This just means in general being aware of your thoughts and your actions, not getting lost in thought or swept away by emotions?

Yes.
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Sun May 29, 2011 7:15 pm

Just because drinking, technically, is a "choice" does not mean it is a choice you have control over. I know that doesn't seem to make sense at first, but it is true. If your brain is now wired for heavy alcohol consumption then that is going to be higher on your priority list than just about anything. If you suffer from alcoholism then drinking will take priority over everything in your life, including your life.

I wouldn't consider it turning your back on the path. I would consider it a part of your path. Since you brought it up and it seems important to you, right mow it seems to be central to your path. The dharma is very big and accommodates a lot more than you might think. in fact, it is infinite.

It is a big thing that you are going to have to deal with. It's like Milarepa's towers. People often think that in the west, we don't have to climb dangerous mountains or face devastating hardships on our path. A lama comes to town, we get in the car and pay a donation and get easy dharma. But is this really true? In fact, we overlook these mountains when they are right in front of us. So, I would look at this as your mountain.

If you decide that it's not worth climbing, then maybe you will just walk away from Dharma. But here is where that "snake in a tube" analogy comes in: You can't really walk away from it, because heavy drinking will only make your life worse, and then one day you'll be really unhappy and you'll say, "oh shit! This is what all that talk about suffering was about!" and you will see that you never really walked away from it at all, you just had to process it through your kidneys first.

Again, I wouldn't worry about damaging your samaya as much as I would worry about damaging your liver. There is a vajrayana center in my town and once a week a buddhist-style AA group meets there. they call their group the peacocks or something, because in Tibetan lore, peacocks drink poison and transform it into wisdom or something like that (I am not sure of the details).

I went to AA but it didn't work for me. Taking the 5 precepts, which includes avoiding intoxicants, from my lama, worked. I don't know what will work for you.
Last edited by PadmaVonSamba on Sun May 29, 2011 7:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby padma norbu » Sun May 29, 2011 7:21 pm

Pero wrote:I was talking about these: 27 Root Samayas. Though mostly they're considered Dzogchen samayas, I remember Rinpoche remarking they're more related or originating from Anuyoga.

Ah, cool, cool. Yes, that is the samaya I had mentioned in post #1 that I got from Rigpa wiki. Getting drunk falls under "abandon carelessness." I guess part of my problem was lack of clarity... I've read many times that in Buddhism there is no such thing as "sin" and then I never heard much about samaya except "you do your best" and "do guru yoga," so I guess I just had a pretty lax idea about things. It is good to finally have a clearer picture about things. Obviously, a few of those things are going to happen accidentally or even on purpose (e.g. lying to not hurt someone's feelings), but in general it's not too difficult to keep track of what to do and not to do. Regardless, I've printed them out and added them to my little book I carry with me.
"Use what seems like poison as medicine. We can use our personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings." Pema Chodron
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby padma norbu » Sun May 29, 2011 7:30 pm

PadmaVonSamba wrote:Just because drinking, technically, is a "choice" does not mean it is a choice you have control over...


Thanks, I've thought about it along these lines recently after becoming aware that it is harder to stop than I had realized and I am viewing it like this now, actually. Friday was the last straw. I only recently read Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's snake in the tube analogy and I am surprised that since then, I've gotten drunk several times thinking, "Okay, this is the last time." So, yes, at this point, I see it as a mountain, a huge obstacle which I am going to take much more seriously.

Now, here's an interesting thing. Pero says "there's no such thing as magick..." in response to my request for a mantra that might help with this. And I have heard this before that Tibetan Buddhism is not magic. Well... how does one explain this:
[
It seems that there is plenty of magic in Tibetan Buddhism and I don't see why people say there isn't. In fact, I have a few books where reality itself is referred to as magic and "magical display." If chanting mantras we don't understand changes our mind, then what is that if not magic? Without getting into specifics, I can think of a very long mantra that very thoroughly goes through and purifies your chakras. There is a book detailing each syllable and what part of your body/mind it is dealing with. Is that any more or less "magic" than a mantra which might help with addictive patterns?
"Use what seems like poison as medicine. We can use our personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings." Pema Chodron
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby heart » Sun May 29, 2011 7:38 pm

All mantras help with with addictive patterns, that is their purpose. Samsara is a addictive pattern, much worse than alcohol. But mantras are connected with the natural state and ultimately that is the only cure from Samsara. So the magic is of mantras is the magic of bringing forth the natural state.

/magnus
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby padma norbu » Sun May 29, 2011 7:58 pm

heart wrote:All mantras help with with addictive patterns, that is their purpose. Samsara is a addictive pattern, much worse than alcohol. But mantras are connected with the natural state and ultimately that is the only cure from Samsara. So the magic is of mantras is the magic of bringing forth the natural state.

/magnus

That is what I was thinking and I was wondering if perhaps the best isn't just Guru Yoga / SoV / Vajra Breathing, but then I started to think of all the different aspects of Tara, for example, and the Medicine Buddha and Mandarava and Red Garuda, how these mantras have a special function. Red Garuda is for "cancer and negative provocations" is what I have written down. I know Red Tara can help with sexual addiction and marriage problems. Odzer Chenma helps with money problems. I did plenty of Googling and I was surprised to find absolutely nothing about addiction, specifically. Just, as you say, samsara is habitual clinging and aversion, and all practice is to overcome that, obviously.
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby heart » Sun May 29, 2011 8:02 pm

padma norbu wrote:
heart wrote:All mantras help with with addictive patterns, that is their purpose. Samsara is a addictive pattern, much worse than alcohol. But mantras are connected with the natural state and ultimately that is the only cure from Samsara. So the magic is of mantras is the magic of bringing forth the natural state.

/magnus

That is what I was thinking and I was wondering if perhaps the best isn't just Guru Yoga / SoV / Vajra Breathing, but then I started to think of all the different aspects of Tara, for example, and the Medicine Buddha and Mandarava and Red Garuda, how these mantras have a special function. Red Garuda is for "cancer and negative provocations" is what I have written down. I know Red Tara can help with sexual addiction and marriage problems. Odzer Chenma helps with money problems. I did plenty of Googling and I was surprised to find absolutely nothing about addiction, specifically. Just, as you say, samsara is habitual clinging and aversion, and all practice is to overcome that, obviously.


There is the main reason for a mantra and then there is a auxiliary use for a mantra. Without the main reason you will not get to the auxiliary.

/magnus
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Re: Vajra Hell

Postby Pero » Sun May 29, 2011 8:14 pm

padma norbu wrote:Now, here's an interesting thing. Pero says "there's no such thing as magick..."

I didn't say that. I said there were no magick fixes but you misunderstood what I meant. I suppose it would have been clearer had I said there were no quick fixes instead.

If chanting mantras we don't understand changes our mind, then what is that if not magic?

Oh it sure can change your mind. My point was just that you shouldn't expect to just recite some mantras a couple of times and bam your attachment to alcohol is gone. I mean, it's possible too, but I wouldn't hold my breath on it.
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