Translating "Dzogchenpa"

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Re: Dzogchen Community of Chogyal Namkhai Norbu

Postby Adamantine » Tue Mar 27, 2012 1:18 am

Dronma wrote:
But Adamantine has no humor at all.... What a pitty...!?! ;) [/color]



Maybe my sense is too refined: I need something to actually be funny before I laugh! :cheers:
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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Dronma » Tue Mar 27, 2012 1:37 am

padma norbu wrote:
Dronma wrote:I have a question about the term "Dzogchenpa".
My personal understanding is that it means "someone who has high realization of Dzogchen".
But often I hear people call themselves or their friends "Dzogchenpa", which is giving the meaning "someone who practises - more or less - Dzogchen".
What is the traditional meaning in Tibetan?
Then, the ending -pa indicates masculine gender. Is there also an equivalent ending -ma for females, for example "Dzogchenma"?


I didn't read whole thread, but...

There is Odzer Chenma. Seems like dzogchenma might make some sense, but probably just isn't thought of as very important distinction. I also know nothing about the Tibetan language. Odzer Chenma is just the first thing I thought of.


I am sorry, padma norbu, for not replying to your post, because if I start to enumerate again the Tibetan words with the suffix -ma which indicate female gender, some people here are going to shoot me....!!!! :rolling:
Last edited by Dronma on Tue Mar 27, 2012 2:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Dzogchen Community of Chogyal Namkhai Norbu

Postby Dronma » Tue Mar 27, 2012 1:46 am

Adamantine wrote: --but you are the one started discussing the gender and etymology of my moniker, and it's supposed ancient Greek origins. . .


Adamantine, I was joking, like Sönam did with it yesterday.
But yes, the word "adamantine" has definitely ancient Greek origins that they were later transferred to Latin and then to other European languages! :smile:
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Re: Dzogchen Community of Chogyal Namkhai Norbu

Postby Adamantine » Tue Mar 27, 2012 6:48 am

Dronma wrote:
Adamantine wrote: --but you are the one started discussing the gender and etymology of my moniker, and it's supposed ancient Greek origins. . .


Adamantine, I was joking, like Sönam did with it yesterday.
But yes, the word "adamantine" has definitely ancient Greek origins that they were later transferred to Latin and then to other European languages! :smile:


definitely?
my point, which seems to be missed, is that the word "origins" implies you can't go further back.. if you disagree that Greek emerged at least in part from Phoenician/Canaanite languages than you certainly must admit there was a lineage of language preceding the Greek.. as I said, you go back far enough and we will have to trace the so-called "origins" of our words to primitive peoples..you yourself refer to the common origins of Greek and Sanskrit, -well that is related to understanding language-families of which Greek and Sanskrit are considered offshoots of the Proto-Indo-European language.. If you want to talk about origins lets just dwell in the murky depths of PIE.
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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Jikan » Tue Mar 27, 2012 5:11 pm

:coffee:

I'm still unclear on something after reading this thread through.

Is it acceptable grammatically to refer to a woman who practices the Great Perfection as a Dzogchenpa? is that normal usage?
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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Malcolm » Tue Mar 27, 2012 5:55 pm

Jikan wrote::coffee:

I'm still unclear on something after reading this thread through.

Is it acceptable grammatically to refer to a woman who practices the Great Perfection as a Dzogchenpa? is that normal usage?



Yes.
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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Norwegian » Tue Mar 27, 2012 6:01 pm

And, just to add, several times Chogyal Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche have said that the Tibetan word for "Dzogchen practicioner" is "Dzogchenpa".

Something Dronma migh want to consider.
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Re: Dzogchen Community of Chogyal Namkhai Norbu

Postby Dronma » Tue Mar 27, 2012 8:57 pm

Adamantine wrote:
Dronma wrote:
Adamantine wrote: --but you are the one started discussing the gender and etymology of my moniker, and it's supposed ancient Greek origins. . .


Adamantine, I was joking, like Sönam did with it yesterday.
But yes, the word "adamantine" has definitely ancient Greek origins that they were later transferred to Latin and then to other European languages! :smile:


definitely?
my point, which seems to be missed, is that the word "origins" implies you can't go further back.. if you disagree that Greek emerged at least in part from Phoenician/Canaanite languages than you certainly must admit there was a lineage of language preceding the Greek.. as I said, you go back far enough and we will have to trace the so-called "origins" of our words to primitive peoples..you yourself refer to the common origins of Greek and Sanskrit, -well that is related to understanding language-families of which Greek and Sanskrit are considered offshoots of the Proto-Indo-European language.. If you want to talk about origins lets just dwell in the murky depths of PIE.


Adamantine, there is the known history of the civilization from the one hand, and there are several theories which have never been proven from the other hand.
Greek language belongs to the first group and it is still alive today! The Phoenician languages and their influences belong to the second group and they have disappeared!

About the etymology of your nickname: "adamantine", see the links below:
http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=adamantine
http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/adamantine - The root of English which is Latin.
http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/adamantinus#Latin - And the root of Latin which is Greek.

I am not interested in analyzing more your nickname. I already told you that I was joking for making you understand that for languages which have 2 or 3 genders, it is important to know which one is the female and which one the male. That's all!
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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Dronma » Tue Mar 27, 2012 9:19 pm

Jikan wrote::coffee:

I'm still unclear on something after reading this thread through.

Is it acceptable grammatically to refer to a woman who practices the Great Perfection as a Dzogchenpa? is that normal usage?


Jilkan, it seems that officially Tibetans do not use the term Dzogchenma. Probably, according to their view about females as being of lower rebirth, they do not even believe that a female can have such capacity for practising Dzogchen.
So, I personally doubt that they use Dzogchenpa for females, either.
This makes any definite conclusion more complicated.
From the other hand, they have the suffixes -pa and -ma for indicating genders. For example my name here: Dronma (torch) which I received from H.H. Penor Rinpoche. Then Drolma (female liberator) are names which are given exclusively to females.

However, I think that the following posts from Namdrol and Bhusuku are very enlightening:



Namdrol wrote:For example, many people are not aware that mkha' 'gro really means ḍāka, the male; while mkha' 'gro ma means ḍākinī, the female. But in personal names the "ma" is general left off.

So, what I am trying to say is that while constructions like "rdzogs chen ma" might be possible, they are non-idiomatic, that is -- Tibetans never use these terms in their daily speech nor in their formal writing.

Also Tibetans are not, at this point, sensitive about politcal correctness in terms of gender use in speech. They still commonly refer to woman as "skye dman", lower rebirth.


Bhusuku wrote:Here you have a tibetan translation tool - type in "rdzogs chen pa" and take a look at the result, then try the same with "rdzogs chen ma"... While Ives Waldo's and the Rangjung Yeshe dictionary know the word "khams mo", none of these dictionaries know the word "rdzogs chen ma".
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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Sönam » Tue Mar 27, 2012 9:28 pm

Dronma wrote:
... they do not even believe that a female can have such capacity for practising Dzogchen.
...


You are flirting with jokes :rolling:

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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Dronma » Tue Mar 27, 2012 9:41 pm

Sönam wrote:
Dronma wrote:
... they do not even believe that a female can have such capacity for practising Dzogchen.
...


You are flirting with jokes :rolling:

Sönam



Yes, I love it! :D
But it is not good for everybody. Most people are getting upset.... :P

However, I am sadly serious in that sentence.
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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Adamantine » Wed Mar 28, 2012 12:29 am

Dronma wrote:[color=#000080]Jilkan, it seems that officially Tibetans do not use the term Dzogchenma. Probably, according to their view about females as being of lower rebirth, they do not even believe that a female can have such capacity for practising Dzogchen.
So, I personally doubt that they use Dzogchenpa for females, either.


This is not true, at all. Actually, women are generally considered to have superior spiritual potential then men. The term that we translate into English as "lower birth" according to Gross and Aziz via Judith Simmer-Brown is "not a point of doctrine but an insight from Tibetan Folk wisdom that accurately observes the constrictions and difficulties of a woman's life under patriarchy". Simmer-Brown also points out that this hardship is not looked at in traditional Tibetan understanding as something to lament, but rather something that provides greater recognition of the sufferings of samsara and thus even greater motivation for practicing Dharma. Actually, if you are interested in this issue, as you seem to be, -you should read Judith Simmer-Brown's book "The Dakini's Warm Breath: The Feminine Principle in Tibetan Buddhism" and specifically the chapter on gender in traditional Tibet.
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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Dronma » Wed Mar 28, 2012 12:43 am

Adamantine wrote:Actually, if you are interested in this issue, as you seem to be, -you should read Judith Simmer-Brown's book "The Dakini's Warm Breath: The Feminine Principle in Tibetan Buddhism" and specifically the chapter on gender in traditional Tibet.


Thank you! It is one of the books I want to buy for future study.
But I have read "Women of Wisdom" by Tsultrim Allione and the "Sky Dancer" by Keith Dowman.
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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Malcolm » Wed Mar 28, 2012 12:53 am

Adamantine wrote:
Dronma wrote:[color=#000080]Jilkan, it seems that officially Tibetans do not use the term Dzogchenma. Probably, according to their view about females as being of lower rebirth, they do not even believe that a female can have such capacity for practising Dzogchen.
So, I personally doubt that they use Dzogchenpa for females, either.


This is not true, at all. Actually, women are generally considered to have superior spiritual potential then men. The term that we translate into English as "lower birth" according to Gross and Aziz via Judith Simmer-Brown is "not a point of doctrine but an insight from Tibetan Folk wisdom that accurately observes the constrictions and difficulties of a woman's life under patriarchy". Simmer-Brown also points out that this hardship is not looked at in traditional Tibetan understanding as something to lament, but rather something that provides greater recognition of the sufferings of samsara and thus even greater motivation for practicing Dharma. Actually, if you are interested in this issue, as you seem to be, -you should read Judith Simmer-Brown's book "The Dakini's Warm Breath: The Feminine Principle in Tibetan Buddhism" and specifically the chapter on gender in traditional Tibet.


Wonderful feminist revisionism — the term "skye dman" is a direct translation from Sanskrit i.e. jātihīna, and far from reflecting Tibetan folk wisdom, merely perpetuates the patriarchal oppression of women.

The pre-Buddhist name for women in Tibet is "sman mo" literally "good woman" where the sman, which also means medicine, has the connotation of "goodness".
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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Adamantine » Wed Mar 28, 2012 1:01 am

Namdrol wrote:
Adamantine wrote:
Dronma wrote:[color=#000080]Jilkan, it seems that officially Tibetans do not use the term Dzogchenma. Probably, according to their view about females as being of lower rebirth, they do not even believe that a female can have such capacity for practising Dzogchen.
So, I personally doubt that they use Dzogchenpa for females, either.


This is not true, at all. Actually, women are generally considered to have superior spiritual potential then men. The term that we translate into English as "lower birth" according to Gross and Aziz via Judith Simmer-Brown is "not a point of doctrine but an insight from Tibetan Folk wisdom that accurately observes the constrictions and difficulties of a woman's life under patriarchy". Simmer-Brown also points out that this hardship is not looked at in traditional Tibetan understanding as something to lament, but rather something that provides greater recognition of the sufferings of samsara and thus even greater motivation for practicing Dharma. Actually, if you are interested in this issue, as you seem to be, -you should read Judith Simmer-Brown's book "The Dakini's Warm Breath: The Feminine Principle in Tibetan Buddhism" and specifically the chapter on gender in traditional Tibet.


Wonderful feminist revisionism — the term "skye dman" is a direct translation from Sanskrit i.e. jātihīna, and far from reflecting Tibetan folk wisdom, merely perpetuates the patriarchal oppression of women.

The pre-Buddhist name for women in Tibet is "sman mo" literally "good woman" where the sman, which also means medicine, has the connotation of "goodness".


Well if the language changed in dependence on the sanskrit/indian then how that word gained contemporary meaning in the Tibetan society, how it was generally interpreted is another thing.. I believe this is what they are getting at and not just a simple revisionism. Certainly, either way is a generalization.. I am sure some used it in the most derogatory of ways at a given time and context, and some held other views..

But in general, in response to Dronma's concerns, I have learned from various sources that a woman is considered to have greater potential -- not in the sense that a woman could get "more" enlightened than a man.. but that once a woman becomes deeply committed to the path she has greater potential for rapid progress. . . But it is said there are more obstacles --inner and outer -- to a woman getting to that place of deep resolve.
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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Malcolm » Wed Mar 28, 2012 1:03 am

Adamantine wrote:
Well if the language changed in dependence on the sanskrit/indian then how that word gained contemporary meaning in the Tibetan society, how it was generally interpreted is another thing.. I believe this is what they are getting at and not just a simple revisionism. Certainly, either way is a generalization.. I am sure some used it in the most derogatory of ways at a given time and context, and some held other views..


Its bullshit. skye dman simple means inferior rebirth, that is all.
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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Adamantine » Wed Mar 28, 2012 1:56 am

Namdrol wrote:
Its bullshit. skye dman simple means inferior rebirth, that is all.


Ok, but what's your understanding of what that means? Dronma is interpreting it that women don't have capacity for practicing Dzogchen, or Dharma, etc. .

My understanding is that it means there are greater obstacles to practicing Dharma. . . and to aspects of life in general-- freedoms, etc.. which is more or less what they were saying. . from a Vajrayana perspective it never meant that women had less capacity than men, that would automatically break a root vow to even use the term then..
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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Malcolm » Wed Mar 28, 2012 2:24 am

Adamantine wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
Its bullshit. skye dman simple means inferior rebirth, that is all.


Ok, but what's your understanding of what that means? Dronma is interpreting it that women don't have capacity for practicing Dzogchen, or Dharma, etc. .

My understanding is that it means there are greater obstacles to practicing Dharma. . . and to aspects of life in general-- freedoms, etc.. which is more or less what they were saying. . from a Vajrayana perspective it never meant that women had less capacity than men, that would automatically break a root vow to even use the term then..


What it has come to mean in the context of Tibetan society is that women are more suited to menial work. Off the top of my head, I can think of only five Tibetan woman who authored texts prior to the mid-twentieth century -- Yeshe Tsogyal, Machig Labdron, Jomo Menmo, Migyur Paldron (daugher of Terdag Lingpa) and Sera Khandro. There are only four or so significant Indian woman who authored texts too, Siddhirajni, Niguma, Sukhasiddhi, and Laksminkara.

The fact is that Tibetan Buddhism is completely patriarchal and sexist -- in fact it is pretty toxic for women in general and is in much need of reform (some of which is happening).

N
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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Dronma » Wed Mar 28, 2012 2:29 am

Adamantine wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
Its bullshit. skye dman simple means inferior rebirth, that is all.


Ok, but what's your understanding of what that means? Dronma is interpreting it that women don't have capacity for practicing Dzogchen, or Dharma, etc. .


Are you crazy???
Dronma could NEVER interpret and mainly accept such nonsense!!! :tongue:
I said that Tibetans probably do not use the term Dzogchenma, or they do not even bother to call any female as Dzogchenpa because of their beliefs that any woman is an inferior rebirth than men.
Which makes me mad....... :twisted:


Adamantine wrote:My understanding is that it means there are greater obstacles to practicing Dharma. . . and to aspects of life in general-- freedoms, etc.. which is more or less what they were saying. . from a Vajrayana perspective it never meant that women had less capacity than men, that would automatically break a root vow to even use the term then..


If they believe in sexes equality, then I wonder why do they exist more vows for nuns than the number of vows for monks? :juggling:
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Re: Translating "Dzogchenpa"

Postby Adamantine » Wed Mar 28, 2012 2:36 am

Dronma wrote:
Adamantine wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
Its bullshit. skye dman simple means inferior rebirth, that is all.


Ok, but what's your understanding of what that means? Dronma is interpreting it that women don't have capacity for practicing Dzogchen, or Dharma, etc. .


Are you crazy???
Dronma could NEVER interpret and mainly accept such nonsense!!! :tongue:
I said that Tibetans probably do not use the term Dzogchenma, or they do not even bother to call any female as Dzogchenpa because of their beliefs that any woman is an inferior rebirth than men.
Which makes me mad....... :twisted:


You misunderstood me: I think a translation issue? I didn't say that you accept it-- I said that is how you are interpreting the term skye dman-- //// meaning that this is how you assume the Tibetan culture defines it. I don't know how you are confusing interpretation with acceptance. I was just reflecting what you said in your own post:
Dronma wrote:Probably, according to their view about females as being of lower rebirth, they do not even believe that a female can have such capacity for practising Dzogchen.
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