Dzogchen and Buddhism

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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby Dronma » Mon May 14, 2012 9:41 pm

Blue Garuda wrote:
Sönam wrote:Dzogchen is enlightenment

Sönam


Enlightenment is Enlightenment.

If we are acting with the understanding you posit, we are all Dzogchenpa and there is no need of any path, and therefore no need of any special Dzogchen direct transmission. Quite a few here had received Dzogchen direct transmissions so if Dzogchen is enlightenment, as opposed to one of several paths towards it, why are they not all enlightened instantly? :)


Well, Sönam is right: Dzogchen is Enlightenment!
But we are not all Dzogchenpas since we are still floating in deep ignorance! :tongue:
Receiving the Dzogchen direct transmission is not the same such as the TOTAL REALIZATION of Dzogchen.
At least, for most of us.... :shrug:
That's why we still need the transmission and the path for maturing the fruit.

PS. I warn you, when I'll get enlightened you have to call me Dzogchen-ma....... :rolling:
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby Sönam » Mon May 14, 2012 9:41 pm

Blue Garuda wrote:
Sönam wrote:
Blue Garuda wrote:
HYT and Mahamudra do lead directly to enlightenment, which was my assertion. Apologies if I didn't convey that.

I have no problem with anyone positing that Dzogchen is alternative or complementary.

I do have a problem with assertions that HYT self-generation etc. is merely a useful support to the superior practice of Dzogchen, which is posited as the only route to Buddhahood.


Dzogchen is enlightenment

Sönam


Enlightenment is Enlightenment.

If we are acting with the understanding you posit, we are all Dzogchenpa and there is no need of any path, and therefore no need of any special Dzogchen direct transmission. Quite a few here had received Dzogchen direct transmissions so if Dzogchen is enlightenment, as opposed to one of several paths towards it, why are they not all enlightened instantly? :)


It's not because you have received direct introduction that you are in the state of Dzogchen ...

1) Direct introduction
2) No doubt
3) Stabilizing it

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.
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby Sönam » Mon May 14, 2012 9:47 pm

Pero wrote:
gregkavarnos wrote:
Pero wrote:No Greg, we don't. Because he isn't.

Really?
Those for whom these things are no longer necessary are great spiritual people, truly sublime beings.
"These things" that "are no longer necessary" are "no longer necessary" for those that have realised them (realise to make real, not to understand) and the only ones that have realised "these things" are realised beings. Seeing how we are not realised beings, but ignorant fools, then "these things" are obviously VERY necessary. Of course that does not mean that we cannot try, but given our incapacity we are just paving the road to lower rebirth with golden stones given that we: are not free from concepts, cannot guard effectively against heedlessness, continue to have a contrived mind, take illusions for reality and do not abide constantly in our true nature.

You said fully enlightened beings. Do fully enlightened beings need pith instructions?


... and if you read the pith instructions, you may discovere that it does not concerne enlightened beings at all ... when he says "great spiritual people, truly sublime beings" it's an encouragement, that 's all.

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By understanding that any and all mental activity is meditation, you are freed from arbitrary divisions between formal sessions and postmeditation activity.
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby Sherab Dorje » Mon May 14, 2012 10:22 pm

Pero wrote:You said fully enlightened beings.
Oh, I did too... Sorry! It doesn't effect my statement though, realised beings, fully enlightened beings, etc...
Do fully enlightened beings need pith instructions?
Well the Buddha had teachers before his enlightenment under the bodhi tree, so... Some say the whole deal was an act, others believe that it was the culmination of countless lifetimes of accumulating merit, etc... When I finally become fully enlightened I'll be sure to send you an answer to that question, right now it'll just be speculation on my behalf. But I don't really understand why you are asking me this question. Does it have something to do with the first sentence of the statement:
Six things are unnecessary when you apply profound teachings to your experience:
???
:namaste:
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One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby Pero » Mon May 14, 2012 10:45 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:
Pero wrote:You said fully enlightened beings.
Oh, I did too... Sorry! It doesn't effect my statement though, realised beings, fully enlightened beings, etc...
Do fully enlightened beings need pith instructions?
Well the Buddha had teachers before his enlightenment under the bodhi tree, so... Some say the whole deal was an act, others believe that it was the culmination of countless lifetimes of accumulating merit, etc... When I finally become fully enlightened I'll be sure to send you an answer to that question, right now it'll just be speculation on my behalf. But I don't really understand why you are asking me this question. Does it have something to do with the first sentence of the statement:
Six things are unnecessary when you apply profound teachings to your experience:
???
:namaste:

It has to do with the fact that is comes from a book of pith instructions for students. That stanza is part of it. What need have a Buddha for instruction? He's already finished the path. Buddha Shakyamuni may have had teachers before his enlightenment, but I'm pretty sure he didn't have/need any after it.

edit: And actually yes, LOL, it does have to do with that statement too. :smile:
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: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby Blue Garuda » Mon May 14, 2012 10:57 pm

Unless one imposes an arbitrary and unproven limit to mind it is not possible to claim there is a path beyond mind. Where is the evidence for it? In your mind maybe ¿¿
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby kirtu » Mon May 14, 2012 11:05 pm

Namdrol wrote:It is said that if an butcher is given the explanation of Dzogchen they will achieve buddhahood more rapidly that a learned pandita who has never received any explanations of Dzogchen. So when explainging and teaching Dzogchen to an uneducated butcher, do we resort to complicated Buddhist words and topics? Do we belabor them with skandhas, dhātus and āyatanas? No. We just explain their state to them in terms any one can easily grasp -- the five elements and body, speech and mind. These eight things are readily understood by anyone.


Is immediate introduction to the five elements even necessary? I'll have to go back and check but they weren't introduced immediately in Dungse Rigdzin Dorje (KDL's son's) teaching for example .... ah, well, just picking the Vajra Verses up, it's right there. So anyway, just being introduced to purity isn't itself sufficient as a start?

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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby Pema Rigdzin » Mon May 14, 2012 11:10 pm

Blue Garuda wrote:
If we follow our ordinary lower practices of HYT and Mahamudra then one day we may end up meeting a Guru who will give us direct introduction to Dzogchen?


No, I said bodhisattvas on the verge of buddhahood, through having practiced sutra or tantra to their culminations, will be directly introduced by all the buddhas and realized ones. This is less akin to Great Perfection being a path than it is to Great Perfection being the perfection of their realization.

Blue Garuda wrote:Meanwhile the especially fortunate ones receive it directly because it depends on 'how direct a path an individual can handle'.

Yes, those who can handle a completely direct path have one at their disposal. Who can handle such a path? People who learn of it and say to themselves "hey, that's for me. I have the freedom to go that route and I want to." Not very elitist. Some people feel they need more intellectual elaboration. Nothing wrong with that, as it will lead in the same direction, even more gradually, so there are paths for such people. So it's about options and what resonates with one. Some people happen to resonate with a less contrived, more direct route. Those people are particularly fortunate because the path they're attracted to more closely resembles the ground of their nature and fruit they're after.

Blue Garuda wrote:You don't seem to be saying that HYT or Mahamudra are equally effective paths, but that they are useful if they lead to a Guru who will give them direct introduction to Dzogchen.

No, I'm saying that sutra, tantra, HYT, Mahamudra, and Dzogchen are all Buddhism. It's important not to look at them each as "schools" or organizations to which one might have allegiance and instead see them as the complete toolkit of all fully enlightened beings for leading others to enlightenment. All these ways of practicing are part of the same continuum of practice leading to enlightenment. But, we're used to seeing domination and subordination, privilege and status and the lack thereof in our societies, so we almost can't help framing a multifaceted path to enlightenment--Buddhism as a whole--in the same way. But that is a delusion and an ego trip both for people who feel superior about their "path" and those who feel their "path" is being belittled as not measuring up.

Blue Garuda wrote:If Dzogchen is the best means then as we are all of the same nature, why should anyone bother with the rest or be less suited to Dzogchen?

Dzogchen is the best means for people who feel a proclivity toward that way of pursuing enlightenment. For people who feel Theravada is their style, Theravada is the best path. If an individual were to feel equally inclined toward both, Dzogchen would be the best path because for a person to whom Dzogchen appeals, it is completely direct, faster and more explicitly explains the ground, path, and fruit. People are suited to different ways of practicing because people are individuals with differing preferences, opinions, abilities, and ways of perceiving the their inner world and the world around them. People convinced that sutra or tantra is more suited to them are not "bothering with inferior paths," they are pursuing enlightenment in the way they feel is best. No problem. That'll work just fine.

Blue Garuda wrote:Having a fast track which only a few may be suited whilst the rest will have to make to with lesser 'means' sounds pretty elitist to me.

Is recognizing that different beings have differing needs and proclivities elitist? Do you not recognize that no matter what sphere we look at, either mundane or spiritual, beings have differing needs and proclivities? Whose fault is it that not all beings are xerox copies of each other? And is there even something wrong with the fact that they're not? Are some better or possessive of greater worth than others because of their differences?

There is no hegemony in Buddhism steering otherwise qualified people away from some Dzogchen fast track only the privileged few can access. People are as free to pursue the direct way of Dzogchen as they feel they are. Wanna practice according to Dzogchen, go meet a Dzogchen guru. Can't find one near you or can't afford to travel to meet one? Can't afford some large, fixed donation for teachings that are available in your area? Can't find a teacher who will teach you Dzogchen straight away without first completing ngondro or some other preliminary? ChNN is a fully qualified master who gives it away for free to literally anyone with an internet connection and the interest and attention span to participate. Not very elitist at all.

Blue Garuda wrote:It's like saying that when you reach the top of the mountain you will be ready to climb the one which REALLY matters.

Maybe I should have made a similar argument when I tested into a pre-collegiate level of math in college, when the Math I needed to get into the Nursing program was intermediate collegiate algebra and I was unable to go directly there. Or maybe I should have felt discouraged and given up on my goal rather than going stage by stage until I'd made it to and completed the level of math I needed. Some people just have more difficulties and need more help than others--that's just life. I never found those who were more talented in math than me, and thus able to go directly to the math I needed, to be elitist. I might have been a little jealous, though, that they didn't have to do the extra work I needed to, and go through the extra stages I needed to, in order to realize the same accomplishment. Was that elitism at work?
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby kirtu » Mon May 14, 2012 11:12 pm

Blue Garuda wrote:Unless one imposes an arbitrary and unproven limit to mind it is not possible to claim there is a path beyond mind. Where is the evidence for it? In your mind maybe ¿¿


Sakya and Nyingma (pre-Dzogchen teaching) both clearly state a path beyond mind in the teaching (when they both advance the view that in reality there is no mind). Sakya does this initially in the context of Mahdyamakia teaching cutting the Mind Only view (so right in the pre-Lamdre material and in immediate HYT teaching). Nyingma teachers (esp. Palyul) sort of just throw it out there over time.

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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby Pema Rigdzin » Mon May 14, 2012 11:50 pm

Blue Garuda wrote:Unless one imposes an arbitrary and unproven limit to mind it is not possible to claim there is a path beyond mind. Where is the evidence for it? In your mind maybe ¿¿


You're not suggesting that the Buddhas' enlightenment consists of a mind of conceptual discrimination and elaboration like the minds of we ordinary sentient beings, are you? I don't believe a single Buddhist approach teaches such a thing. I think the problem here is not understanding how Buddhism defines mind. It is, by definition, a limited phenomenon to be done away with in favor of its basis: wisdom/knowledge of the natural state/whatever appellation one prefers.
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby Dechen Norbu » Mon May 14, 2012 11:55 pm

heart wrote:
Dechen Norbu wrote:Yes, of course. If someone doesn't feel drawn to Dzogchen, there's still a lot to choose! It's not like Dzogchen is the only path.
Well, Dzogchen is Buddhadharma. This is inescapable, as the fruit is Buddhahood. It just doesn't need methods or views from other yanas, but most practitioners use them, the practices not the views, if the need arises.


So why don't you just drop all those unnecessary methods then Dechen? You just keep repeating that they are unnecessary, like a mantra or a dogma, but obviously they are still necessary for you? Am I right?

/magnus

Why should I drop them if they're useful? This doesn't mean they are necessary for everyone or that the view basing the practice is different from Dzogchen.
My car is also not necessary for Dzogchen practice, but very useful when it comes to overcome difficult circumstances, like traveling to somewhere far. Does this mean I should throw it away? Secondary practices serve the same purpose. We need to work with circumstances, what can I say? I could drop those methods. I can also travel by foot. This doesn't mean I need to.
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby Malcolm » Tue May 15, 2012 12:36 am

Pema Rigdzin wrote:
Blue Garuda wrote:Having a fast track which only a few may be suited whilst the rest will have to make to with lesser 'means' sounds pretty elitist to me.

Is recognizing that different beings have differing needs and proclivities elitist? Do you not recognize that no matter what sphere we look at, either mundane or spiritual, beings have differing needs and proclivities? Whose fault is it that not all beings are xerox copies of each other? And is there even something wrong with the fact that they're not? Are some better or possessive of greater worth than others because of their differences?

There is no hegemony in Buddhism steering otherwise qualified people away from some Dzogchen fast track only the privileged few can access. People are as free to pursue the direct way of Dzogchen as they feel they are. Wanna practice according to Dzogchen, go meet a Dzogchen guru. Can't find one near you or can't afford to travel to meet one? Can't afford some large, fixed donation for teachings that are available in your area? Can't find a teacher who will teach you Dzogchen straight away without first completing ngondro or some other preliminary? ChNN is a fully qualified master who gives it away for free to literally anyone with an internet connection and the interest and attention span to participate. Not very elitist at all.


Yes, I always have to chuckle when I see this charge of elitism being made. Anyone who is interested in Dzogchen and decides to meet a teacher and do practice is part of "the elite". Those who are not, are not. People self-select though their own karma.

I don't know how many people I have sent to ChNN. Then I see them later, "how is your practice going" . They reply, oh, I am studying with someone else. I am like, that is nice. People always cry about wanting to have realized teachers, and when there is one in the world, who really teaches Dzogchen just as it is, I am constantly amazed at people who just do not see the incredible value of ChNN in this day and age. I have come to the conclusion that people like limitations, it makes them feel comfortable.

Do I personally think Dzogchen is the bees knees, the most profound thing since sliced bread? Of course I do, that is way I spend most of my time studying and practicing it. All teachings have their value, even non-Buddhist teachings. I am especially fond of Kashmir Trika Shaivism.
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby Pema Rigdzin » Tue May 15, 2012 1:45 am

Andrew108 wrote:For example: In all the life stories I've read of ChNN none of them have said that he just studied Dzogchen and only Dzogchen. All Tulkus and Geshes within both Nyingma and Bön lineages go through the teachings progressively. Is there something special about us that we would have the merit to understand the Dzogchen teachings in full without first having received so-called fundamental teachings?


I don't believe anyone is saying that mind-based practices are not helpful for a Dzogchen practitioner. In fact they very much can be. Why? Because rigpa and mind (and thus all mental and physical experiences) are related. Rigpa can be found within any mental experience, if one has been properly introduced, though some mental experiences can be more distracting than others, causing so much clinging or aversion that there's no space for the recognition. Also, anything like Madhyamaka that wears away at our investment in our concepts and our being convinced that our deluded perceptions are correct is likely to help make it easier to recognize rigpa. This is not to say, however, that such practices are objectively necessary for each and every person to be successfully introduced to his or her rigpa. ChNN has some excellent practices in his Guruyoga book that teach one how to ascertain rigpa in the contexts of mental stillness, mental movement, and physical sensation, and he explains in the text certain signs that what one has found is rigpa, rather than mind, based on certain attributes of rigpa that are impossible of mind. As long as one has the interest and optimism that Dzogchen-specific practices like these are worthwhile, one could just as well focus solely on them without ever even hearing the name Madhyamaka or Prajnaparamita and realize one's true nature completely. But most of us encountered Madhyamaka, and benefitted from it greatly, long before we got into Dzogchen, and that's certainly not a bad thing as long as we didn't err in our understanding of it and become conditioned by that.
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby Bhusuku » Tue May 15, 2012 1:55 am

My dear... I've been away from this forum for only about 24 hours, and now that I'm back all I can say is... WOW! - I really didn't expect that my question would trigger such a lively discussion!

Since I'm pretty sure most of you guys here are way more knowledgeable about Dharma than I am, I just want to add my reason for asking this particular question: it solely arouse from the fact that I heard Norbu Rinpoche again and again saying that we should always go to the essence of things, since life is short.

Now I'm studying Dharma since I was 19 or 20, but I took - well, let's say "a short break" during the last few years... Now I'm 30, did resume my study and practice, and although I forgot quite a lot during my absence, I find that the more I'm studying and practicing now, the more I'm remembering again the stuff I've learned over the years. However, during the last couple of months I found myself more and more pondering the question about what's really necessary to learn in theory to be able deepen my practice. And by reading quite a lot of Namdrol's postings here during the short time since I found this forum, I ran into a couple of statements of him that seemed to indicate that - after decades of studying and practicing - he came to the same conclusion to which I'm slowly coming now: A rudimentary knowledge of Abhidharma, Madhyamaka etc. is of course essential to avoid the dangers of going astray and to understand properly what you're actually doing in your practice. However, the Buddhadharma is so vast that the idea of wanting to be really proficient in all of it's aspects can lead one astray as well. Of course, if you're really really smart and equipped with an eidetic memory (as Namdrol and a few others here sometimes seem to be) you really can become proficient in Abhidharma, Madhyamaka, Prajnaparamita, Pramana and all of the lower and higher tantric teachings, without wasting much time you otherwise could have used for your practice. But if you're dumb like bread as I am, your only choice is to decide whether you'd like to try to become a learned scholar, or whether you want to progress in your practice, because to succeed in both at the same time seems quite impossible.

And if you have the great fortune to have found an realized master who's willing and able to equip you with all the necessary methods to understand your real nature, the decision seems quite simple to me: Life is really short, and in the 30 years I'm here now, I already have seen quite a few good friends at my age perish, and hence I rather try to do my best and invest as much time as possible to make use of the methods my teacher graciously has given to me. Of course that doesn't mean I'm going to stop learning more about sutra and tantra, or falling into the delusion of thinking that I already learned enough, but I don't want to find myself lying on my deathbed one day, thinking to myself: now you've spent thousands of hours learning every little aspect of Abhidharma, Madhyamaka, etc., but wouldn't it had been more useful and wiser to have spend all these hours practicing, while learning only the essential things that are really necessary to do your practice properly?

Well, in the end I'm just a shmuck and I certainly don't want to lead someone astray with my opinions, so if some (or many) of you don't agree with me, please just ignore me as it wouldn't surprise me if I got it all wrong. It's just my humble opinion at this particular point in time - but things can change, as they always do.

:namaste:
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby greentreee » Tue May 15, 2012 4:36 am

immaculate conditions

without exhaustion
what is reasons causation?
is there still, as is?
scratching thick hair'd head,
"if air can be conditioned,
like where's the shampoo?"

"greentreee"
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby ram peswani » Tue May 15, 2012 4:51 am

Karma Dorje wrote:While I am violently in agreement with the gist of this as it accords with one's own practice, I think it is important that one is able to explain the dharma to students at all levels of understanding. Not everyone is ready for the highest view. If one is never going to teach, there is probably limited benefit to a khenpo or geshe curriculum. (Studying a little shentong or Shaktadvaita can help avoid the pitfall of crypto-nihilism, though!)

There is however a problem I have seen even among people who have received dzogchen teachings with a lack of enthusiastic perseverance that a more solid grounding in tonglen/lojong would give them. There is no question that bodhicitta is entirely contained within dzogchen view if one really understands, but at least in my experience many people who profess a dzogchen view have more of an intellectual approach than an experiential one. This is exactly the sort of pitfall that a realized guru will be able to point out and undercut. Without a true master of dzogchen, I think the whole path becomes much, much more complicated.





As per Lotus sutra....

There are three paths

1. Arhant ... It is a rest station. Many get tired and end their journey contributin nothing to existance. But choice is available and a few accept the path to Buddhahood. It is easiest of three paths.

2. Dzogchen / Pratyakabuddha... It is a permanent rest station.They contribute to Buddhahood their Wisdom according to their capability and they end their journey . They do not go to Buddhahood. This is million times easy path compared to Buddhahood but is more difficult compared to Arhant

3. Buddhas... Their is only one path for them. All Buddhas past , present and future follow this path of one vehicle. They create universes which help the existance and go on building better and better universe. They are the true evolutionaries and their contribution to existance is permanent. They are building blocks and go on contributing to improved and permanent universe and help the existance.
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby Jnana » Tue May 15, 2012 5:14 am

Dechen Norbu wrote:The most interesting thing about Dzogchen is that if one has capacity and a qualified teacher, soon it has very little to do with beliefs and much more with letting beliefs crumble.

The same can be said for every Buddhist path, Śrāvakamārga on up.
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby heart » Tue May 15, 2012 5:15 am

Dechen Norbu wrote:
heart wrote:So why don't you just drop all those unnecessary methods then Dechen? You just keep repeating that they are unnecessary, like a mantra or a dogma, but obviously they are still necessary for you? Am I right?

/magnus

Why should I drop them if they're useful? This doesn't mean they are necessary for everyone or that the view basing the practice is different from Dzogchen.
My car is also not necessary for Dzogchen practice, but very useful when it comes to overcome difficult circumstances, like traveling to somewhere far. Does this mean I should throw it away? Secondary practices serve the same purpose. We need to work with circumstances, what can I say? I could drop those methods. I can also travel by foot. This doesn't mean I need to.


So you agree then, you can't make it without them? When ChNNR says that all other methods are secondary it don't mean they are not necessary. Guru Yoga is given paramount importance in all of the three inner Tantras. You can't really say that Guru Yoga belongs to Ati, can you? But still ChNNR repeat over and over again that it is of paramount importance. So methods are of paramount importance, secondary or not.

Dzogchen, or rather the Dzogchenpa, is a part of Buddhism as long as you use the Buddhist methods, even if it is "only" Anuyoga.

/magnus
"To reject practice by saying, 'it is conceptual!' is the path of fools. A tendency of the inexperienced and something to be avoided."
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby Lhug-Pa » Tue May 15, 2012 5:40 am

ram peswani wrote:.


Hi Ram Peswani

I'm curious as to where you heard or read that the Ninth Yana of Buddhism is equivalent to the Second Yana of Buddhism. :shrug:
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Re: Dzogchen and Buddhism

Postby ram peswani » Tue May 15, 2012 5:50 am

Lhug-Pa wrote:
ram peswani wrote:.


Hi Ram Peswani

I'm curious as to where you heard or read that the Ninth Yana of Buddhism is equivalent to the Second Yana of Buddhism. :shrug:


Lotus sutra talks of only three yanas and not nine or more yanas. Yana is sanskrit word for vehicle
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