No-self and Rigpa

Moderator: Tibetan Buddhism moderators

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby Jax » Mon Apr 02, 2012 9:52 pm

Sally , very clear and helpful... Thanks! Yes, Sonam is correct... Samantabhadra is not some ancient Buddha. However in a sense he/she/it is ancient, primordially so. You have always been Samantabhadra, never anyone else. That means you are originating the Dzogchen lineage in every moment. We call this origination "self-arising wisdom" or rangjyung yeshe. That means Rigpa, the complete knowledge of Truth arises in each moment, yet goes unnoticed. The outer guru, also a projection of your own energy, tsal, is being a mirror so you may see your own face to be that of Samantabhadra. You hold the entire lineage within yourself, but you are pretending to be someone "other". In trekchod the pretense collapses and Samantabhadra is discovered to be yourself. Practice your Guru's teaching with great diligence, even if instructed to relax (lhugpa) completely in total effortlessness. Don't prepare for the bardo to come but recognize the bardo of this moment. As Rigpa self-arises in every moment.. why delay? Notice "the naked noticing" to be the object of your quest.
Jax
 
Posts: 156
Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2012 9:05 pm

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby asunthatneversets » Tue Apr 03, 2012 2:13 am

Sally Gross wrote:Perhaps a distinction needs to be made between ego (self, atta/atman) and consciousness, which is not-self (anatta/anatman) ... :thinking: .... Denial of the existence of ego in ultimate terms (paramattha in Pali, paramartha in Sanskrit) is certainly not annihilationism, any more than using the first-person singular pronoun (the dreaded "I") in conventional terms (sammuti in Pali, sa.mvrti in Sanskrit) is ipso facto eternalism. The Ananda Sutta in the Pali canon is perhaps relevant here. (See http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html).

I hope that this makes sense.


This is good to keep in mind, however one still needs to be careful with the implementation of distinctions like this. As it is, this teaching is already irrefutably predicated on one's intention to establish an authentic distinction between the relative condition of ignorance(avidyā) and one's true nature(vidyā). So distinctions are useful and already clearly present(for it's the purpose of the dharma to take one from ignorance to wisdom). Ignorance and wisdom in and of themselves automatically imply separate and distinctive attributes which define their respective natures; I'm sure most of us agree/understand that avidyā(ignorance) implies identification with an illusory self(ātman, atta), whereas the contrasting condition of vidyā(wisdom) implies non-self(anātman, anattā). So distinctions are obviously helpful, the only issue is that in actualizing the true path which takes one from ignorance to wisdom acquiring the skillful means and discrimination to properly traverse the obstacles and habitual tendencies which create ignorance is of utmost importance.

Not merely understanding that there is in fact a distinction between avidyā and vidyā, but coming to ascertain why and how. Dzogchen is unique in this aspect because it goes straight to the "source" in a sense, and while it could involve itself in establishing the myriad distinctions it actually(in the absolute traditional sense) does not. The reason for this is important and is why Dzogchen can claim to be the swiftest path to liberation.

In the act of establishing and introducing the conceptual dichotomy of the ego(ātman, atta) vs. non-ego(anātman, anattā) there is obviously the tendency to deny the ego. Which is naturally because one comes to understand that the ego is illusory and perpetuates avidyā, therefore the dissolution of the ego would naturally bring the manifestation of wisdom. While this is true and appropriate insight to keep in mind, unless one intuitively understands the nature of the ego then this same insight can tragically reify and strengthen the ego.

For the sake of avoiding this predicament it should be understood how the ego manifests(the nature of it's appearance) and why Dzogchen traditionally avoids reifying this distinction. And this doesn't pertain strictly to ego/non-ego but to any distinction.

Egoic mind is not merely thought(ideas, memory, notions, concepts, belief), but thought that is identified with and/or grasped at. Ego is identification with thought on any level and in any form. So the ego IS thought which is being projected (objectified/subjected) and apart from projected thought ego is absent. Amalgamation of thought is the intellect and what needs to be understood is that the very implementation of making a distinction between ego/non-ego is itself a product of the intellect.

So the denial of the ego is a product of ego, likewise the affirmation of the ego is a product of ego. In either instance the ego is reified and can even be further solidified if one doesn't catch this slip. This property can actually even be applied to the necessary notions of egoless mind and/or consciousness/awareness. Being that egoless mind and consciousness/awareness are concepts they are product of the intellect and are objects to/of the very same ego they purport to contrast. However that isn't to deny the implementation of such concepts(or the intellect itself), it's just something to bare in mind and remember. The reason for this is that unless one has the skill and discrimination to not get caught in ones own projections, notions of egoless mind/awareness/consciousness can become objects themselves and therefore the subject(ego) is kept alive in this grasping and true "seeing" is blocked. Another way this becomes an issue is when the clarity aspect of the nature of mind is mistaken as an apprehending consciousness(or awareness) extending out into space from the pseudo reference point of 'here'.... coupled with the illusion of time, this faculty is erroneously misperceived as a substratum and (as ignorance habitually unfolds) becomes the base of all afflictions(all-ground, kun gzhi). So projected thought plays a huge role in one's experience because it truly is the definitive and delegating factor which decides the manner in which manifestation conforms and appears. Manifestation seemingly alters it's appearance in accordance with the notions projected upon it. This is how the five lights become the five elements and so on... reality has a certain degree of plasticity in this way.

But getting back to the point, creating the distinction between the ego and non-ego actually serves to solidify an ego which in truth isn't there. And further the ego then feeds on this duality of itself and it's absence, in addition to also feeding on the dualistic notions of it's own existence(as a subjective entity) contrasted against that which is posited to be other-than-itself(objects). So things go from 0 to out of control very fast.

Dzogchen avoids this predicament by (at first) abiding in one's natural and spontaneous manifestation of wakefulness that stands prior to seeming arisings of phenomena, and it rests there without humoring the intellect, thus avoiding further dualistic imputation. Thoughts are allowed to self-liberate upon appearance avoiding identification and proliferation. As one gains confidence in this "position" other faculties such as timelessness(previously obscured by thought projection) begin to become more apparent. From there, resting on ones potential laurels graciously revealed by the teacher in direct introduction, the true nature of mind (if cultivated properly) can flower in it's fullness.

The Great Perfection, in a sense, abides prior to imputation because it takes into account that use of the intellect is actually populating experience with dualisms(and time itself) which are inherently absent in it's true form appearing as one's true nature(vidyā). While absolutely necessary, the use of the intellect if uncoupled with skillful means, becomes the very snare one is attempting to escape from.

In the end that which was imputed as "thought" by thought itself, is innately known to be the nature of mind appearing to itself as itself (along with all other previously imputed appearances).

"Here the external forms that are perceived are not designated as empty of self. When emptiness is made an intellectual object, the form and emptiness aspects of the object arise in the intellect. However since the perceived forms have no intrinsic characteristics, those forms should not mix with the intellect. Therefore the statement, 'Emptiness is not other than form, nor form other than emptiness,' should be taken as an axiom"

Jigme Lingpa's argument here seems to be that, through analysis, the intellectual method of establishing emptiness generates the concepts of form (gzugs / rūpa) and emptiness, while in fact the form, as it manifests, bears neither the characteristics of form nor of emptiness. The distinction between form and emptiness comes into being only through the application of intellectual analysis to that which manifests.

........Jigme Lingpa paraphrases the well-known lines from the Heart Sutra to argue that the nondistinction between form and emptiness stated there is in harmony with the usual presentation of emptiness in the Great Perfection. The union of form and emptiness is not taken as a goal, but as the already present nature of that which manifests. This is the explanation given for the rejection of a conceptual, dualistic mode of establishing emptiness. A non-dualistic practice of emptiness is also emphasized in YL where Jigme Lingpa writes that in gnosis, "appearances are not cut with the razor of emptiness."
It is suggested that in KGN that the distinction between relative truth and ultimate truth is another false duality. The line is "In the awakened mind there is no relative or ultimate truth." In accordance with this rejection there are very few references to the two truths in any of these Longchen Nyingtig texts.

In SN, Jigme Lingpa enumerates four mistaken approaches to emptiness, which he calls the "four ways of straying (shor sa bzhi)." These are borrowed from the Mahāmudrā tradition, where they are to be found at least as far back as Dagpo Tashi Namgyal (1512-87), who enumerates them in his Legshe Dawai Özer. They are (i) straying into the condition where emptiness is an object of knowledge, (ii) straying into taking emptiness as the path, (iii) straying into taking emptiness as an antidote, and (iv) straying into taking emptiness as a seal. The first three errors are related to the criticism of approaches to Madhyamaka set out in the previous paragraphs.

- excerpt from "Approaching The Great Perfection" - Sam Van Schaik (in italics)
asunthatneversets
 
Posts: 1094
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2011 10:30 pm

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby Jax » Tue Apr 03, 2012 7:12 am

Or perhaps Sun, instead of:

"The Great Perfection, in a sense, abides prior to imputation because it takes into account that use of the intellect is actually populating experience with dualisms(and time itself) which are inherently absent in it's true form appearing as one's true nature(vidyā)."

Perhaps the Great Perfection IS the imputations and the populating by the intellect with dualisms... As opposed from being separate from or prior to?
Jax
 
Posts: 156
Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2012 9:05 pm

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby asunthatneversets » Tue Apr 03, 2012 8:47 am

Jax wrote:Or perhaps Sun, instead of:

"The Great Perfection, in a sense, abides prior to imputation because it takes into account that use of the intellect is actually populating experience with dualisms(and time itself) which are inherently absent in it's true form appearing as one's true nature(vidyā)."

Perhaps the Great Perfection IS the imputations and the populating by the intellect with dualisms... As opposed from being separate from or prior to?


In the context of breaking (or avoiding) the habitual tendencies which create and sustain avidyā the initial step is abiding in that unchanging nature which transcends arisings. That space is neither here nor there, close or far, up or down, left or right, self or other. The Great Perfection IS the imputations and the populating by the intellect with dualisms... only in the context of their suchness, and only in the context of that initial unchanging nature being ascertained not as a substratum located 'here' subject(separate/prior) to the series of arisings, but as the arisings themselves, appearing to themselves, non-arisen and non-established. There is only THAT and THAT is beyond the 4 extremes. So truly to say that the imputations/dualities ARE the Great Perfection can't be said, because the dualities are born of imputation and the imputation is born of ignorance, the entire unfolding and habitual reification of this ignorance is avidyā itself. Even though once true realization takes place it is intuitively known that avidyā was unreal from beginningless time, to posit that avidyā lacks reality from the perspective of avidyā itself, only sustains the illusion. There are subtle facets and levels within the illusion, in attempting to jump straight to declaring all is the Great Perfection the underlying and debilitating delusion persists.

I posted this in a response from another thread and it's relevant to what I'm attempting to say here:

...Telling someone they are already perfect can again be misinterpreted as advocating complete non-action. Granted the action is ultimately illusory, but it's only illusory from the vantage point of the natural state. Non-action is also the route, but done skillfully. The natural state is not causally attained in any way or by anyone, yet the path must be walked, otherwise one remains in delusion which causes suffering, no matter how illusory it is, it appears real.

It has to be presented in steps in most cases (even if they end up being illusory), except on rare occasion when one becomes realized simply upon hearing it the first time. I agree that the natural state (though beyond the 4 extremes) is all-that-is in a sense, but only upon the actualization of final fruition. Until that has been established those attributes do not apply. It's much like anattā, prior to that experience (necessary and actual experience) the idea of no-self was merely a philosophical notion. It actually could be intellectually understood to the point where I had in fact convinced myself that I knew there was no self... and thought I "understood" or "got it" for the longest time. Until that actual experience dawned and annihilated all of that, an actual experience which removed all doubt, and after that (even though the emptiness of self was fully apparent) I felt foolish for having thought I initially understood from whatever mental/philosophical gymnastics I had employed. Avidyā is like a plague, it's a disease which causes suffering and skews the true nature of reality. The Great Perfection is not the disease and the necessary steps to curing the malady need to be taken in cases where they're appropriate. So I can see what you're trying to point at but it's too extreme a position to take in my opinion, the process is an illusion but nevertheless a process takes place... hence the beautiful quote which started this thread.
asunthatneversets
 
Posts: 1094
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2011 10:30 pm

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby heart » Tue Apr 03, 2012 9:57 am

asunthatneversets wrote:
Sally Gross wrote:Perhaps a distinction needs to be made between ego (self, atta/atman) and consciousness, which is not-self (anatta/anatman) ... :thinking: .... Denial of the existence of ego in ultimate terms (paramattha in Pali, paramartha in Sanskrit) is certainly not annihilationism, any more than using the first-person singular pronoun (the dreaded "I") in conventional terms (sammuti in Pali, sa.mvrti in Sanskrit) is ipso facto eternalism. The Ananda Sutta in the Pali canon is perhaps relevant here. (See http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html).

I hope that this makes sense.

<snip>
But getting back to the point, creating the distinction between the ego and non-ego actually serves to solidify an ego which in truth isn't there. And further the ego then feeds on this duality of itself and it's absence, in addition to also feeding on the dualistic notions of it's own existence(as a subjective entity) contrasted against that which is posited to be other-than-itself(objects). So things go from 0 to out of control very fast.
<snip>


Buddha never said there was an ego in the first place. Anatta doesn't affirm anything. Your thoughts constantly affirm an non-existing ego. The Buddha just pointed-out the obvious.

/magnus
"To reject practice by saying, 'it is conceptual!' is the path of fools. A tendency of the inexperienced and something to be avoided."
- Longchenpa
User avatar
heart
 
Posts: 2931
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 1:55 pm

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby Sherab Dorje » Tue Apr 03, 2012 11:17 am

That's some excellent stuff both by Sally and sun! Thank you for the clarifications! :applause:
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
User avatar
Sherab Dorje
Former staff member
 
Posts: 7885
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby asunthatneversets » Tue Apr 03, 2012 4:27 pm

heart wrote: Buddha never said there was an ego in the first place.

Right, thats what the whole point of my post was.

heart wrote: Anatta doesn't affirm anything. Your thoughts constantly affirm an non-existing ego. The Buddha just pointed-out the obvious.

/Magnus

I'm not affirming anything, the ego is an illusion. And it can't be as obvious as you're making it seem otherwise there would be no point to the Buddha's teaching.
asunthatneversets
 
Posts: 1094
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2011 10:30 pm

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby Malcolm » Tue Apr 03, 2012 4:59 pm

Jax wrote:
Perhaps the Great Perfection IS the imputations and the populating by the intellect with dualisms... As opposed from being separate from or prior to?


So pompous elephants of ati would maintain, unable to distinquish sems from rtsal.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
Malcolm
 
Posts: 10163
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby alpha » Tue Apr 03, 2012 6:43 pm

over the past week or so the dharmawheel dzogchen was like eating sandpaper...

on what bumi do i have to be to understand any of this?
will i survive as a dzogchen practitioner if i know none of this?
AOM
alpha
 
Posts: 542
Joined: Sun Jan 24, 2010 12:05 pm
Location: kent

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby Pero » Tue Apr 03, 2012 7:00 pm

alpha wrote:over the past week or so the dharmawheel dzogchen was like eating sandpaper...

on what bumi do i have to be to understand any of this?
will i survive as a dzogchen practitioner if i know none of this?

Probably. :rolling:
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.
- Shabkar
Pero
 
Posts: 1797
Joined: Tue Aug 31, 2010 8:54 pm

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby Sönam » Tue Apr 03, 2012 7:12 pm

alpha wrote:over the past week or so the dharmawheel dzogchen was like eating sandpaper...

on what bumi do i have to be to understand any of this?
will i survive as a dzogchen practitioner if i know none of this?


I have some taste on my tongue of what you mean. Maybe we shoud open a second dzogchen forum ... for unstudied!

Sönam
By understanding everything you perceive from the perspective of the view, you are freed from the constraints of philosophical beliefs.
By understanding that any and all mental activity is meditation, you are freed from arbitrary divisions between formal sessions and postmeditation activity.
- Longchen Rabjam -
Sönam
 
Posts: 1866
Joined: Wed Mar 24, 2010 2:11 pm
Location: France

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby Paul » Tue Apr 03, 2012 7:14 pm

alpha wrote:over the past week or so the dharmawheel dzogchen was like eating sandpaper...


If you ever get lost in a desert, you can use a piece of sandpaper as a map.
Image

"Do not block your six senses; delight in them with joy and ease.
All that you take pleasure in will strengthen the awakened state.
With such a confidence, empowered by the regal state of natural mind,
The training now is simply this: lets your six senses be at ease and free." - Princess Parani
User avatar
Paul
 
Posts: 753
Joined: Sat Feb 13, 2010 8:12 pm

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby Sherab Dorje » Tue Apr 03, 2012 7:30 pm

Well, I wouldn't say a map, maybe a rough guide! :tongue:
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
User avatar
Sherab Dorje
Former staff member
 
Posts: 7885
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby alpha » Tue Apr 03, 2012 7:33 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:Well, I wouldn't say a map, maybe a rough guide! :tongue:


that's good......... :twothumbsup:
AOM
alpha
 
Posts: 542
Joined: Sun Jan 24, 2010 12:05 pm
Location: kent

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby Dronma » Tue Apr 03, 2012 8:27 pm

alpha wrote:over the past week or so the dharmawheel dzogchen was like eating sandpaper...

on what bumi do i have to be to understand any of this?
will i survive as a dzogchen practitioner if i know none of this?


:twothumbsup:
I surrender.... Otherwise I have to get tons of painkillers for my headaches.... :rolleye:
Not to mention the hangover at the next day!!!! :rolling:
"My view is as vast as the sky, but my actions are finer than flour"
~ Padmasambhava ~
User avatar
Dronma
 
Posts: 715
Joined: Mon Feb 06, 2012 7:29 pm
Location: Athens - GR

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby CapNCrunch » Tue Apr 03, 2012 8:49 pm

over the past week or so the dharmawheel dzogchen was like eating sandpaper...


This. :thumbsup:

I'm partly to blame, having added to the confusion, but I'm glad I'm not the only one who's felt like we're not in Kansas anymore... (and not in a good way). And now, back to our regularly scheduled programming...
CapNCrunch
 
Posts: 67
Joined: Sat Feb 11, 2012 6:53 pm

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby Sally Gross » Tue Apr 03, 2012 9:43 pm

alpha wrote:over the past week or so the dharmawheel dzogchen was like eating sandpaper...


The unmistakable flavour and texture of what is called papa~nca-sa~n~naa-sankhaa in Pali. ~Naa.nananda Bhikkhu, Concept and Reality in Early Buddhist Thought, gives an enlightening analysis of this, for those who are interested. In Sanskrit, the first two components are prapa~ca and samj~naa respectively, but I'm not sure about the Sanskrit equivalent of the Pali sankhaa.
Dukkham eva hi, na koci dukkhito,
kaarako na, kiriyaa va vijjati,
atthi nibbuti, na nibbuto pumaa,
maggam atthi, gamako na vijjati


Suffering there certainly is, but no sufferer,
no doer, though certainly the deed is found.
peace is achieved, but no-one's appeased,
the way is walked, but no walker's to be found.

- Visuddhimagga XVI, 90
User avatar
Sally Gross
 
Posts: 209
Joined: Mon Mar 12, 2012 1:33 pm
Location: Cape Town, South Africa

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby Jax » Wed Apr 04, 2012 4:31 am

Namdrol wrote:
Jax wrote:
Perhaps the Great Perfection IS the imputations and the populating by the intellect with dualisms... As opposed from being separate from or prior to?


So pompous elephants of ati would maintain, unable to distinquish sems from rtsal.


Namdrol... Sem is tsal ( or rolpa if you prefer) All of the display is "equally" the play or ornament of the Base.
Jax
 
Posts: 156
Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2012 9:05 pm

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby heart » Wed Apr 04, 2012 7:02 am

asunthatneversets wrote:
heart wrote: Anatta doesn't affirm anything. Your thoughts constantly affirm an non-existing ego. The Buddha just pointed-out the obvious.

/Magnus

I'm not affirming anything, the ego is an illusion. And it can't be as obvious as you're making it seem otherwise there would be no point to the Buddha's teaching.


I was just reacting to the part I quoted, nothing else. It is actually very obvious but also the most difficult point.

/magnus
"To reject practice by saying, 'it is conceptual!' is the path of fools. A tendency of the inexperienced and something to be avoided."
- Longchenpa
User avatar
heart
 
Posts: 2931
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 1:55 pm

Re: No-self and Rigpa

Postby Jax » Wed Apr 04, 2012 7:23 am

More on "imputations" being the Great Perfection:

Longchenpa writes: "Everything is the perfection of awakened mind. Furthermore there is perfection in oneness, in that everything is perfect within the scope of awareness. There is perfection in duality, in that there is perfection in the creations of ordinary mind (sem)." Choying Dzod.
Jax
 
Posts: 156
Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2012 9:05 pm

PreviousNext

Return to Dzogchen

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot], Yahoo [Bot] and 9 guests

>