Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

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Johnny Dangerous
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by Johnny Dangerous »

Malcolm wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
That's all Mahāmudra is.

Seems like a tricky way of seeing it, realization of the nature of mind would always be non-gradual wouldn't it? Sustaining that realization on the other hand would have to be gradual for the vast majority of folks.
No. Once you have seen the nature of the mind, that is all there is to do.
If that's all there was to do you'd be done with any and all formal practice after a successful introduction or pointing out. Maybe that's true for a very small percentage, but seems very unlikely for most. Even Garab Dorje's Three Statements are more than just one thing to do!
"...if you think about how many hours, months and years of your life you've spent looking at things, being fascinated by things that have now passed away, then how wonderful to spend even five minutes looking into the nature of your own mind."

-James Low
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conebeckham
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by conebeckham »

Matt J wrote:Why do you say that?
conebeckham wrote:Certainly, for Dzogchen, we can say this...but I think the "referent" pointed out in Dzogchen is, maybe, potentially, a bit different.
I'm parroting Kongtrul. Everything up to SemDe does not go "beyond mind." longDe, and especially MenNgakDe (Nyingthik), do, in fact, Go "beyond mind." I believe this to be a correct statement, but I choose not to elaborate further.....
དམ་པའི་དོན་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ཆེ་བ་དང་།
རྟོག་གེའི་ཡུལ་མིན་བླ་མའི་བྱིན་རླབས་དང་།
སྐལ་ལྡན་ལས་འཕྲོ་ཅན་གྱིས་རྟོགས་པ་སྟེ།
དེ་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ལ་ནི་ལོ་རྟོག་སེལ།།


"Absolute Truth is not an object of analytical discourse or great discriminating wisdom,
It is realized through the blessing grace of the Guru and fortunate Karmic potential.
Like this, mistaken ideas of discriminating wisdom are clarified."
- (Kyabje Bokar Rinpoche, from his summary of "The Ocean of Definitive Meaning")
Justmeagain
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by Justmeagain »

I suspect this thread needs to be moved to another home!

Or are we still trying to establish what Mahamudra is before comparing it to the more easily defined Shikantaza?
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by Malcolm »

Justmeagain wrote:I suspect this thread needs to be moved to another home!

Or are we still trying to establish what Mahamudra is before comparing it to the more easily defined Shikantaza?
Mahamudra is the nature of your mind and everything else.
"Nonduality is merely a name;
that name does not exist."
—Kotalipa
Justmeagain
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by Justmeagain »

Malcolm wrote:
Justmeagain wrote:I suspect this thread needs to be moved to another home!

Or are we still trying to establish what Mahamudra is before comparing it to the more easily defined Shikantaza?
Mahamudra is the nature of your mind and everything else.
I thought Emptiness was the nature of the mind and everything else and Mahamudra was a method to experience this?
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by Malcolm »

Justmeagain wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
Justmeagain wrote:I suspect this thread needs to be moved to another home!

Or are we still trying to establish what Mahamudra is before comparing it to the more easily defined Shikantaza?
Mahamudra is the nature of your mind and everything else.
I thought Emptiness was the nature of the mind and everything else and Mahamudra was a method to experience this?
Emptiness has no appearance. Mahāmudra does.
"Nonduality is merely a name;
that name does not exist."
—Kotalipa
Justmeagain
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by Justmeagain »

Malcolm wrote:
Justmeagain wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
Mahamudra is the nature of your mind and everything else.
I thought Emptiness was the nature of the mind and everything else and Mahamudra was a method to experience this?
Emptiness has no appearance. Mahāmudra does.
And what is the nature of this appearance? I'd say Emptiness has the appearance of a lack of inherent existence. But maybe thats pushing it somewhat!

How about I put my OP this way....are Mahamudra and Shikantaza synonymous?
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by Astus »

Justmeagain wrote:How about I put my OP this way....are Mahamudra and Shikantaza synonymous?
One can find common elements between the Great Seal and Just Sitting. Both are meant as the realisation of the ultimate truth, for instance. Both view the ultimate wisdom as the absence of attachment and detachment. Both see beings as originally enlightened and appearances as originally pure.
1 Myriad dharmas are only mind.
Mind is unobtainable.
What is there to seek?

2 If the Buddha-Nature is seen,
there will be no seeing of a nature in any thing.

3 Neither cultivation nor seated meditation —
this is the pure Chan of Tathagata.

4 With sudden enlightenment to Tathagata Chan,
the six paramitas and myriad means
are complete within that essence.


1 Huangbo, T2012Ap381c1 2 Nirvana Sutra, T374p521b3; tr. Yamamoto 3 Mazu, X1321p3b23; tr. J. Jia 4 Yongjia, T2014p395c14; tr. from "The Sword of Wisdom"
Malcolm
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by Malcolm »

Justmeagain wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
Justmeagain wrote:
I thought Emptiness was the nature of the mind and everything else and Mahamudra was a method to experience this?
Emptiness has no appearance. Mahāmudra does.
And what is the nature of this appearance? I'd say Emptiness has the appearance of a lack of inherent existence. But maybe thats pushing it somewhat!

How about I put my OP this way....are Mahamudra and Shikantaza synonymous?
Emptiness and luminosity ('od gsal) are synonyms. When one is in the experience of emptiness or luminosity there are no appearances. In Mahāmudra there are appearances. Which appearances? The appearances of the world.
"Nonduality is merely a name;
that name does not exist."
—Kotalipa
passel
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by passel »

Just had a thought looking over this thread, about a line from a Kobun Chino talk (I think the talk was called "No No Zero" or something like that.

He said that zazen, and he's Soto so he'd be talking about shikantaza (which of course isn't a thing you can point to which is how threads like this get so long), is the absence of samadhi. If I'm remembering right, he said that we're in samadhi all day long- hungry samadhi, angry samadhi, horny samadhi, content samadhi, exalted samadhi, whatever. Zazen (which of course he means more expansively than literally just sitting) is when we abandon samadhi. I might even add "are free from the tyranny of samadhi."

The language resonates with some of the lines like "not meditating, not being distracted," that Tulku Urgyen was so fond of.
"I have made a heap of all that I have met"- Svetonious
passel
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by passel »

And while it's on my mind, sounds like some of the amanasi/amanasikara instructions, which in turn always makes me think of Uchiyama's opening the hand of thought.
"I have made a heap of all that I have met"- Svetonious
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by fckw »

Malcolm wrote:he second is called "vipaśyāna," because one recognizes that movement and calmness are identical in nature.
Now I'm curious - what instructions are usually given out on this particular point in Sutra-Mahamudra?
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by Josef »

Justmeagain wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
Justmeagain wrote:
I thought Emptiness was the nature of the mind and everything else and Mahamudra was a method to experience this?
Emptiness has no appearance. Mahāmudra does.
And what is the nature of this appearance? I'd say Emptiness has the appearance of a lack of inherent existence. But maybe thats pushing it somewhat!

How about I put my OP this way....are Mahamudra and Shikantaza synonymous?
No, the point of view of both are vastly different, their application, result, and practice are also quite different.
The only element that is similar is the non-conceptual foundation of them methods. Although, I'm skeptical of shikantaza being non-conceptual.
Kye ma!
The river of continuity is marked by impermanence.
Ceaseless flowing of appearance.
Beautiful and repulsive.
The dance of life and death is a display of the vast expanse.
With gratitude the watcher and the watched pass through the barrier of duality.
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by Anonymous X »

Beside entertaining of the comparative mind, how does all this 'knowledge' help anyone?

I seem to remember the 6th Zen Patriarch saying that the teachings were neither gradual or sudden, and that gradual and sudden only applied to the students. Gradual or sudden are both concepts. It's not a choice that one makes that reveals reality.
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by Temicco »

Malcolm wrote: Emptiness and luminosity ('od gsal) are synonyms. When one is in the experience of emptiness or luminosity there are no appearances. In Mahāmudra there are appearances. Which appearances? The appearances of the world.
How do "appearances" differ from "form", practically? What does the experience of Mahamudra entail that distinguishes it from emptiness/luminosity, such that it entails appearances while the other does not?

What of the saying, "Mind without projection is mahamudra"?
"Deliberate upon that which does not deliberate."
-Yaoshan Weiyan

ཚེ་འདི་ལ་ཞེན་ན་ཆོས་པ་མིན། །
འཁོར་བ་ལ་ཞེན་ན་ངེས་འབྱུང་མིན། །
བདག་དོན་ལ་ཞེན་ན་བྱང་སེམས་མིན། །
འཛིན་པ་བྱུང་ན་ལྟ་བ་མིན། །
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by dharmagoat »

As I see it, the teachings of Mahamudra and Shikantaza are both maps of the same territory. Neither are useful as objects for examination unless one is on the ground finding their own way (with the help of a guide) and able to see the landmarks for themselves. To compare two maps when unfamiliar with the actual territory lacks any meaningfulness.
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by Malcolm »

fckw wrote:
Malcolm wrote:he second is called "vipaśyāna," because one recognizes that movement and calmness are identical in nature.
Now I'm curious - what instructions are usually given out on this particular point in Sutra-Mahamudra?
Freedom from proliferation, aka, simplicity.
"Nonduality is merely a name;
that name does not exist."
—Kotalipa
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by Malcolm »

Temicco wrote:
Malcolm wrote: Emptiness and luminosity ('od gsal) are synonyms. When one is in the experience of emptiness or luminosity there are no appearances. In Mahāmudra there are appearances. Which appearances? The appearances of the world.
How do "appearances" differ from "form", practically? What does the experience of Mahamudra entail that distinguishes it from emptiness/luminosity, such that it entails appearances while the other does not?

What of the saying, "Mind without projection is mahamudra"?
Luminosity is a completion stage experience in which all appearances subside. Mahāmudra is the experience of union, in which appearance and emptiness are a seamless unity. Rather than being treated as relative (appearance) and emptiness (ultimate), here the two truths are seamless and unified where the distinctions between ultimate and relative, conditioned and unconditioned, etc., are seen through.
"Nonduality is merely a name;
that name does not exist."
—Kotalipa
fckw
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by fckw »

Malcolm wrote:[
Luminosity is a completion stage experience in which all appearances subside. Mahāmudra is the experience of union, in which appearance and emptiness are a seamless unity. Rather than being treated as relative (appearance) and emptiness (ultimate), here the two truths are seamless and unified where the distinctions between ultimate and relative, conditioned and unconditioned, etc., are seen through.
Ah, thanks, that again clarifies something.

Would you say this is fairly comparable to the kadag and lhundrup aspects of the base in Dzogchen?
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Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Post by Malcolm »

fckw wrote:
Malcolm wrote:[
Luminosity is a completion stage experience in which all appearances subside. Mahāmudra is the experience of union, in which appearance and emptiness are a seamless unity. Rather than being treated as relative (appearance) and emptiness (ultimate), here the two truths are seamless and unified where the distinctions between ultimate and relative, conditioned and unconditioned, etc., are seen through.
Ah, thanks, that again clarifies something.

Would you say this is fairly comparable to the kadag and lhundrup aspects of the base in Dzogchen?
Well, sort of. The difference is that ka dag can never be a basis for delusion, since it has no appearances. In Dzogchen teachings, the basis for delusion is lhundrup.
"Nonduality is merely a name;
that name does not exist."
—Kotalipa
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