The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Adamantine » Wed Jan 04, 2012 7:47 pm

I got the sense your idea of "repackaging" was a bit confused also based on including Tarthang Tulku in your list of Tertons..

Also, it is good to be clear about Chogyam Trungpa-- he was brilliant, and made remarkable attempts to translate Dharma concepts into western philosophical or psychological or even pop culture terms.. but these efforts were not considered his terma, just as his incorporation of japanese cultural art forms into practice was not considered his terma...
But I am not an expert on him by any means.

What seems erratic is your admiration of "innovation", ala your dharma geeks talk.. and possible conflating that with terma, as in the Tarthang Tulku case, and your implications in that same prior post.

I can understand that to a point, in that if a living terton is actually a fully awakened being such as Dudjom Lingpa or Dudjom Rinpoche clearly were, then they may be "downloading from the Dharmakaya" at any moment... but still, in general there are conventions about what qualifies as terma, and what doesn't. It's not a term that can be thrown on to anything.

When you reference Reggie Ray with admiration in your interview, this raises some red flags.. you pronounce that he is doing well, etc. But it seems apparent from his interviews that he is clearly innovating, discarding essential points of Dharma like rebirth, and still claiming himself as a teacher of Vajrayana, which by nature requires an understanding of rebirth, and bardo, etc. for it to make any sense. So I am a bit suspect about your eagerness for innovation, new forms, etc. and question your motivation for seeking a watered down dharma that adapts to cultural trends. . . I mean, you should know there are many warnings by Guru Rinpoche about these degeneration times and degeneration of the teachings..
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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Malcolm » Wed Jan 04, 2012 7:56 pm

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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby kirtu » Wed Jan 04, 2012 8:02 pm

Adamantine wrote:....discarding essential points of Dharma like rebirth, . . I mean, you should know there are many warnings by Guru Rinpoche about these degeneration times and degeneration of the teachings..


Ray has discarded rebirth from his teachings?

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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Mr. G » Wed Jan 04, 2012 8:14 pm

kirtu wrote:
Adamantine wrote:....discarding essential points of Dharma like rebirth, . . I mean, you should know there are many warnings by Guru Rinpoche about these degeneration times and degeneration of the teachings..


Ray has discarded rebirth from his teachings?

Kirt


An old thread:

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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Pero » Wed Jan 04, 2012 9:13 pm

Who gave the transmission of this lineage to the Aro leader?
Although many individuals in this age appear to be merely indulging their worldly desires, one does not have the capacity to judge them, so it is best to train in pure vision.
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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Adamantine » Wed Jan 04, 2012 10:25 pm

Some strands of Buddhism recommend eliminating likes and dislikes in order to accept everything equally. The Dzogchen approach is to leave natural energies—including lust and revulsion—as they are


This is a quote from your blog David.

Could you elaborate? I am a bit confused by the context here. This does not equate with my understanding.

In Kyabje Dudjom RInpoche's own words:

After a time, your tense, dualistic attitudes will evaporate and you will get to the point where gold and pebbles, food and filth, gods and demons, virtue and nonvirtue, are all the same for you-you’ll be at a loss to choose between paradise and hell! But until you reach that point (while you are still caught in the experiences of dualistic perception), virtue and nonvirtue, buddhafields and hells, happiness and pain, actions and their results – all this is reality for you. As the Great Guru has said, "My view is higher than the sky, but my attention to actions and their results is finer than flour."

So don’t go around claiming to be some great Dzogchen meditator when in fact you are nothing but a farting lout, stinking of alcohol and rank with lust!
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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Heruka » Thu Jan 05, 2012 5:01 am

Namdrol wrote:Image


"A" corpse?
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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Dharmaswede » Thu Jan 05, 2012 10:35 am

David Chapman wrote:
But one of the major points in the podcasts is that you are an dissenting (or however you want to word it) voice, with deviating views, on matters that lie at the heart of the Vajrayana tradition.


Hmm. Could you be more specific? I don't think I said that... I suggest only that new presentations are possible and desirable.


I don't think you said it either, I just meant where you are positioning yourself in the general discourse, and that is one impression that the podcasts left in me. But I do of course fully respect if you feel that I was misrepresenting you.

More specifically, here is an example of what I mean:
Buddhist Geeks podcast, 240, six minutes into the podcast:
"The problem we have is that because Vajrayana has been pushed out of the modern, mainstream of Western Buddhism it has been really forced to be really traditional, and there are some other historical reasons why that has happened. I think a lot of people would say that it is very important to do Vajrayana in a very traditional way. That's not what I would advocate, not at all. I am planning to be writing a series on my blog about reinventing Buddhist trantra. It seems to me that this may be a good time to start to work through the aspects of Vajrayana that seem to be in conflict with Western culture and to see just as it was done with Therevada and Zen, see what we want to keep and what needs to change. If that could be done successfully, we could innovate new forms and we could then actually use Buddhist methods as Buddhists to accomplish transformation instead of apply Western methods."

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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby heart » Thu Jan 05, 2012 11:02 am

Protestant Buddhism expressing its true face as the degeneration of Dharma in our times. There can't be much of Dudjom Rinpoche left in Ngakpa Chögyam teachings if his students say this.

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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Malcolm » Thu Jan 05, 2012 3:04 pm

heart wrote:Protestant Buddhism expressing its true face as the degeneration of Dharma in our times. There can't be much of Dudjom Rinpoche left in Ngakpa Chögyam teachings if his students say this.

/magnus



In David's case, he explicitly rejects karma and rebirth and claims that the rejection of karma and rebirth is intention of Dzogchen, its "little secret".

Of course this is completely false since the concept of multiple bardos and so on come directly from the Dzogchen tantras.

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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby David Chapman » Thu Jan 05, 2012 10:16 pm

Adamantine, yes, the distinction between terma and other re-presentation is worth being clear about. (Although, according to Guru Chöwang, ultimately, all Dharma is terma.) My characterization of the list of 1980s developments as "termas" was a slip, inasmuch as Tarthang Tulku's work was not one. (The others were, or at least claimed to be). Likewise, I do not mistake any of the current new Western developments as terma, nor do they present themselves as such.

Also, I do not endorse any of those developments. For instance, some of Shinzen Young's introductory talks about Vajrayana on YouTube are admirably clear and seem accurate. But when he talks about practicing the Virgin Mary as yidam, I go "Yikes! Whoa! That is way beyond the pale for me, personally." But I don't know for sure that it can't work...

What I'm excited about is that the cultural climate seems to have shifted so that tantra is no longer being effectively suppressed by the Consensus. That should be good for strictly traditional tantra as well as possible new developments.

Re leaving emotions as they are: I do not see the contradiction between the two passages you cite. Düdjom Rinpoche confirms that this is the method of Dzogchen; he then points out that you should not claim to be able to apply that approach unless you actually can.

Who gave the transmission of this lineage to the Aro leader?


Aro Lingma, the original terton, in visions.

Obviously, this is not verifiable. But neither is the reception of any other dag snang gter, all of which are revealed in this way. (The Düdjom Ter being another relatively recent example.)

he explicitly rejects karma and rebirth


Uh, no. Are you referring to "No cosmic justice"? That doesn't reject rebirth or karma at all. (I understand that it could easily be misread that way if you start from the assumption that anyone who isn't altogether traditional will hold all modernist prejudices. Maybe it needs some clarification and expansion.)

The page explicitly endorses a particular notion of karma, and says nothing about rebirth one way or the other. The point is that there isn't an external, eternal mechanism of reward and punishment.

The Aro Lamas teach rebirth explicitly and say that, at minimum, you need to have an open mind about it if you are going to be a student. (The Aro bardo teachings wouldn't make much sense without that, would they?)
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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Mr. G » Thu Jan 05, 2012 10:40 pm

David Chapman wrote:For instance, some of Shinzen Young's introductory talks about Vajrayana on YouTube are admirably clear and seem accurate.


Shinzen Young has stated that Yidam's are archetypes. Enough said.
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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Jikan » Thu Jan 05, 2012 10:44 pm

Thank you, David, for clarifying my questions on Kali Ma and the rest. We might not agree on many points, but your patience and persistence in this thread are appreciated.
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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Malcolm » Thu Jan 05, 2012 10:58 pm

David Chapman wrote:Adamantine, yes, the distinction between terma and other re-presentation is worth being clear about. (Although, according to Guru Chöwang, ultimately, all Dharma is terma.)


No, Guru Chowang's point is that the whole universe is a treasure.
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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Malcolm » Thu Jan 05, 2012 10:59 pm

David Chapman wrote:
Uh, no. Are you referring to "No cosmic justice"? That doesn't reject rebirth or karma at all. (I understand that it could easily be misread that way if you start from the assumption that anyone who isn't altogether traditional will hold all modernist prejudices. Maybe it needs some clarification and expansion.)

The page explicitly endorses a particular notion of karma, and says nothing about rebirth one way or the other. The point is that there isn't an external, eternal mechanism of reward and punishment.


I think you might one to rework that one, than -- because there is nothing partiuclarly novel about the Dzogchen presentation of karma. There are novelties in Dzogchen, but that is not one of them.

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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Jan 06, 2012 10:34 am

After a couple of days off duty I come back only to see 3 pages of the same old stuff about Aro?.... :roll:

The fact that someone comes here with pondered words and a soft tone doesn't change a single coma about what I said.
A lot of harm can be caused with a pleasant speech. You catch flies with honey, not vinegar...

As I said to the OP of that other little thread, these Aro's are a bunch of fakes- meaning mostly the two weirdos you can see in the photo, their active supporters and, sadly, the retinue of people they successfully were able to fool- this is widely known -as you can see the polemics have been there unresolved for a long time now- and you better stay clear of that organization- unless you want to end up practicing something that has little or nothing to do with Dharma, as you can understand if you read this thread.
The people who came here speaking in favor of Aro are just confirming the points I previously made.
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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Adamantine » Fri Jan 06, 2012 5:08 pm

Re leaving emotions as they are: I do not see the contradiction between the two passages you cite. Düdjom Rinpoche confirms that this is the method of Dzogchen; he then points out that you should not claim to be able to apply that approach unless you actually can.


David, that's not what I got out of Dudjom Rinpoche's writing. He does not say the method of Dzogchen
is to follow after the impulses of lust and aggression as your writing implies.
It seems he is saying the opposite: one of the results of Dzogchen
is that one will transcend dualistic preferences altogether, so you may see shit as no less desirable as gold,
etc. Then he points out that until one truly experiences this result--as realization,
one should closely watch ones conduct and be concerned with virtue. To misunderstand this based
on an intellectual understanding, pretend one is realized and follow after the impulses of lust is what he
is warning against. Your statement seems to be readily able to lead one into this
mistake he warns of. Do you not see this?
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Detachment is the final happiness. ~Sri Saraha
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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Jikan » Fri Jan 06, 2012 7:05 pm

Apropos of whether an invented history & lineage are problematic for Dzogchenpas:

I also saw lay tantrikas who had acted irresponsibly, old sorcerers, and ordinary people who had pretended to be lamas, inconceivable numbers of them vomiting blood and experiencing unbearable bodily pain. I saw many carnivorous creatures devouring them and many denizens of hell hurling accusations of misdeeds at them.


This is from Delog Dawa Drolma's account of her experiences in the various realms, recorded in English in Delog (p. 82). I assume this text has some authority in this forum and in this thread.

I would like to know if there is any plausible rebuttal to the position that our friends involved in a "vajra romance" with the Aro scene are, in fact, students of ordinary people who are pretending to be lamas, as Dawa Drolma puts it. This is the primary critique against Aro, that it's phony. It's clear to me from this and other sources that if it's phony, then it's a problem. But the problem goes away if David or anyone else can show it's not phony. Well?
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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Pero » Fri Jan 06, 2012 7:17 pm

David Chapman wrote:
Who gave the transmission of this lineage to the Aro leader?


Aro Lingma, the original terton, in visions.

I see. That would make him a terton.
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Re: The Aro gTér: some answers and questions

Postby Malcolm » Fri Jan 06, 2012 7:24 pm

Jikan wrote:Apropos of whether an invented history & lineage are problematic for Dzogchenpas:

I also saw lay tantrikas who had acted irresponsibly, old sorcerers, and ordinary people who had pretended to be lamas, inconceivable numbers of them vomiting blood and experiencing unbearable bodily pain. I saw many carnivorous creatures devouring them and many denizens of hell hurling accusations of misdeeds at them.


This is from Delog Dawa Drolma's account of her experiences in the various realms, recorded in English in Delog (p. 82). I assume this text has some authority in this forum and in this thread.

I would like to know if there is any plausible rebuttal to the position that our friends involved in a "vajra romance" with the Aro scene are, in fact, students of ordinary people who are pretending to be lamas, as Dawa Drolma puts it. This is the primary critique against Aro, that it's phony. It's clear to me from this and other sources that if it's phony, then it's a problem. But the problem goes away if David or anyone else can show it's not phony. Well?


This whole thread is ridiculous-- why? Because this was first discussed on the Trike boards. Then E-sangha. Now here. And it is largely the same people, and the same words.

It is very clear -- some people like Chogyam and his trip; other people think it is bullshit. So, nothing has changed. Some people like Dzogchen, other people think it is bullshit. Some people like Mahamudra, other people think it is bullshit. Some people like Gelug, other people think it is bullshit. Some people like Lamdre, other people think it is bullshit.Some people like gzhan stong, other people think it is bullshit. Some people like Tibetan Buddhism, other people think it is bullshit. Some people like Zen, other people think it is bullshit. Some people like Buddhism, other people think it is bullshit.

So, we have gone nowhere further than discovering some people like Chogyam and his trip, and other people think it is bullshit.

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