Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

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Crazywisdom
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Crazywisdom »

Malcolm wrote: Wed Jul 15, 2020 10:55 pm
Astus wrote: Wed Jul 15, 2020 8:30 am
Malcolm wrote: Tue Jul 14, 2020 11:35 pmI was refuting your citations, showing how they do not match the claims put forward for them. If others make errors, why should the one who points them out be held at fault?
What do you then make of Maitripa's teachings, who is often named as the Indian source of equating Mahamudra with Madhyamaka?

You mean Avadhūtīpa Advayavajra aka Maitrigupta aka Maitrīpa, the disciple of Naropa, the guru of Marpa, who was an adept of Cakrasamvara? Who states in the Tattvaratnāvalī:

Here I shall not explain the texts of secret mantras because they are extremely profound, because they are the domain of those persons very devoted to the profound vehicle, and because practice of the four seals and so on has been very extensively explained. Further:

"Though the goal is the same, unconfused;
with many methods, not difficult,
and to be undertaken by those of sharp faculties,
the treatises of mantra are superior."


We are talking about the same person, correct? If so, what more is there to say about this master's view of sūtra and his position vis a vie Vajrayāna? Perhaps he did equate Madyamaka with Mahāmudra (textual citation please), but how is this different than equating the gnosis of Prajñāpārāmitā with Mahāmudra? No one is claiming the gnosis is different. But in this text, Maitripa is clearly claiming that Mantrayāna is superior in method. I mean, what else is there to say?

Having knocked down your bowling pins one by one, friend, it is high time for you to accept your defeat. You are not equipped for this argument in anyway. You just don't have the language skills in Tibetan (or Sanskrit). That's just a fact. Likewise, I do not have language skills in Chinese, so I generally just leave you to your various arguments in the Zen and Chan forums, and only occasionally pipe up if something is relevant to the presence of Chan in Tibet.
Right this Co-Emergent Mahamudra stuff comes through Maitripa. And Kagyu are always equating Prajnaparamita, Madhyamika, Dzogchen and Mahamudra. For them it is all one thing. But the method... bodhichitta, deity, guru, mahamudra, dedication... the empowerment is from lineage prayers...
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Astus »

Malcolm wrote: Wed Jul 15, 2020 10:55 pmPerhaps he did equate Madyamaka with Mahāmudra (textual citation please), but how is this different than equating the gnosis of Prajñāpārāmitā with Mahāmudra?
Maitripa's teachings on amanasikara is mentioned as such, because of Madhyamaka and Vajrayana bringing one equally to it, so that is no different from equating the gnosis of both.
But in this text, Maitripa is clearly claiming that Mantrayāna is superior in method. I mean, what else is there to say?
Gampopa and others have said the same of course. Still one question is left. Even after empowerments and generation stage practices what is used to introduce Mahamudra, the nature of mind, is not necessarily candali but often samatha and vipasyana, where vipasyana means same or similar pointers as what is in the sutras and treatises. So when it comes to meeting face to face with reality, not only the reality seen, but also the immediately preceding directions to it can be the same. Therefore the methodical difference between Paramitayana and Vajrayana primarily in how one arrives at the point to be capable of genuine vipasyana, where the former has studies and samatha, the latter has abhiseka, deity yoga, candali, etc., but most importantly guru yoga for the same purposes. Is that an acceptable distinction according to you?
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"
Crazywisdom
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Crazywisdom »

Astus wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 9:28 am
Malcolm wrote: Wed Jul 15, 2020 10:55 pmPerhaps he did equate Madyamaka with Mahāmudra (textual citation please), but how is this different than equating the gnosis of Prajñāpārāmitā with Mahāmudra?
Maitripa's teachings on amanasikara is mentioned as such, because of Madhyamaka and Vajrayana bringing one equally to it, so that is no different from equating the gnosis of both.
But in this text, Maitripa is clearly claiming that Mantrayāna is superior in method. I mean, what else is there to say?
Gampopa and others have said the same of course. Still one question is left. Even after empowerments and generation stage practices what is used to introduce Mahamudra, the nature of mind, is not necessarily candali but often samatha and vipasyana, where vipasyana means same or similar pointers as what is in the sutras and treatises. So when it comes to meeting face to face with reality, not only the reality seen, but also the immediately preceding directions to it can be the same. Therefore the methodical difference between Paramitayana and Vajrayana primarily in how one arrives at the point to be capable of genuine vipasyana, where the former has studies and samatha, the latter has abhiseka, deity yoga, candali, etc., but most importantly guru yoga for the same purposes. Is that an acceptable distinction according to you?
Well then you need to read the Wisdom Chapter on the Kalachakra Tantra, because nothing could be further from the truth. It is not candali then shyamatha and vipashyana. You are completely conflating sutra and tantra in a totally inappropriate way. Even the Guhyasamaja tantra is done completely differently than you explain. You have somehow totally missed the point of energy, the heart chakra, the bindus, and rainbow light.
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Crazywisdom »

Astus wrote: Mon Jul 13, 2020 6:50 pm
Crazywisdom wrote: Mon Jul 13, 2020 5:58 pmSo now you accept Drikung Kagyu? Essence Mahamudra is not a yana, it is based on Mahamudra Tilaka Tantra and others. It is tantric.
If we take Gampopa's word on it, Mahamudra per se is neither sutra nor tantra, but beyond them.

'In his texts, Gampopa distinguishes three main paths. (1) The paramitayana is called “the path of renunciation” and “the path of accumulation,” which relies on inferential analysis and is for those who have faith and are of dull faculties. (2) The path of mantra is labeled “the path of transformation” and “the path of means,” which relies on direct perception and is for those who are afflicted and of medium faculties. (3) The path of Mahamudra is “the path of prajna” and “the path of suchness,” which relies on blessing and is for those who are intelligent and of sharp faculties. He also describes these three paths as follows:

(1) As for taking inference as the path, after having scrutinized all phenomena through arguments [such as] being beyond singularity and multiplicity, one says that there is no [other] possibility [for phenomena to be] than these [possibilities that one has examined] and then posits that everything is empty. [This is the path of] inference.
(2) [The practice of] nadls, vayus, and tilakas,782 the repeated recitation of mantras, and so on, which are based on the generation stage of the deity’s body, make up the path of blessing.
(3) As for taking direct perceptions as the path, a genuine guru says that connate mind as such is the luminous dharmakaya. Through having been taught an unmistaken instruction of definitive meaning like that, one then takes native mind as the path, without separating the triad of view, conduct, and meditation in terms of this connate mind about which one has gained certainty within oneself.

Elsewhere, Gampopa explicitly states that Mahamudra is the highest path that actually transcends both sutra and tantra. All of this clearly suggests that Gampopa considered Mahamudra per se as a path that does not belong to either sutra or tantra but lies beyond both. In practice, most of Gampopa s preserved teachings consist primarily of sutra-based instructions and then conclude with Mahâmudrâ, either not teaching the path of mantra at all or mentioning it only in passing.'

(When the Clouds Part, p 192-193)
And even besides this issue of the fourth empowerment which you do not understand. You do not realize in the mother tantras, which is all you seem to understand, candali is the shyamatha. But this is not your theravada shyamata. It is turbo charged. It is leagues different. It is Barry Bonds to your little league. It is correct to say the fourth empowerment is vipashyana, but even for the mother tantras, it is based on this extremely deep and pleasurable shyamatha, there is no hint of conceptual mind. there is only the direct perception of bliss. To counter the reification of that there are the instructions on mahamudra like the dohas on space, etc. This will not happen eating apple pie. If you practice turning away and rejection of the bliss at this stage you have just guaranteed failure, because that is all your body is. The wisdom mother tantras are eliciting a direct experience of powerful energy. Energy is the isolation of mind, not analysis.

Whereas, if you take the father tantras and nondual tantras, with which you must familiarize yourself, you will then see how limited your current understanding is. There the reflections of inner light are brought to the four and it is with these vision of light that the final isolation of mind is done to reveal the wisdom nature. The Kalachakra does both chandali and wisdom visions which have not atomic basis. the nature of mind is not just emptiness as in sutra. It is also energy. It is also Light.

I asked you what is your understanding of clear light. What is your understanding of clear light appearance emptiness. You go down this road through the tantric literature and you will finally resolve these errors you keep making.
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Crazywisdom »

I keep forgetting the crucial point of two accumulations, purification and merit. Even chandali is very much dependent on some prior accumulation of merit. I know Mila was said to tell Gampopa his merit was enough when he doled out chandali. But Gampopa already had a vajrayana background with mandala offerings at least. Vajrasattva purification is base level vajrayana.

the most important point is merit. Lack of merit is why your shyamata is shallow and your vipashyana is dim. How do I know? Your apple pie example relied on hinayana rejection methods. When one has merit the joy is spontaneous so the shyamatha is profound and then the point of clear light is obvious instead of relying on guesses.
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Malcolm »

Astus wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 9:28 am but most importantly guru yoga for the same purposes. Is that an acceptable distinction according to you?
Without empowerment, a guru is just a common Mahāyāna guru, there is no guru yoga in common Mahāyāna.. Guru Yoga is method which strictly belongs to Highest Yoga Tantra. So no, it is not an acceptable distinction. Guru Yoga is also connected with the so-called subtle body, and is not merely a practice of devotion, as is commonly misunderstood.
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Astus »

Malcolm wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 11:47 am Without empowerment, a guru is just a common Mahāyāna guru, there is no guru yoga in common Mahāyāna.. Guru Yoga is method which strictly belongs to Highest Yoga Tantra. So no, it is not an acceptable distinction. Guru Yoga is also connected with the so-called subtle body, and is not merely a practice of devotion, as is commonly misunderstood.
I did not mean the guru yoga as part of sutra but as part of Vajrayana. The distiction I asked about was regarding the difference of methods getting to the point of being capable of performing vipasyana.
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"
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Astus »

Crazywisdom wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 9:35 am You have somehow totally missed the point of energy, the heart chakra, the bindus, and rainbow light.
I studied and heard mainly some sutra-style Mahamudra teachings, so I'm not particularly familiar with other parts of Vajrayana.
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: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Malcolm »

Astus wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 1:56 pm
Malcolm wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 11:47 am Without empowerment, a guru is just a common Mahāyāna guru, there is no guru yoga in common Mahāyāna.. Guru Yoga is method which strictly belongs to Highest Yoga Tantra. So no, it is not an acceptable distinction. Guru Yoga is also connected with the so-called subtle body, and is not merely a practice of devotion, as is commonly misunderstood.
I did not mean the guru yoga as part of sutra but as part of Vajrayana. The distiction I asked about was regarding the difference of methods getting to the point of being capable of performing vipasyana.
There are, within, Vajrayāna, two methods of giving rise to nondual gnosis: the first is the practice of the two stages; the second is guru yoga. Not that it really matters, but Sakya Pandita also endorses these two means.

Vipaśyanā, in Vajrayāna is not a result of intellectual analysis, it is rather a product of integrating the experience of the example gnosis or the genuine gnosis induced during empowerment, depending on the practitioner. For example, Naropa likens the experience of the example gnosis to the first bhumi, and while this experience is not necessarily the first bhumi, it can be a genuine gnosis in some persons of higher capacity. When it comes to "direct introduction" or so-called pointing out, the principle is roughly the same.

The difference between the two stages and guru yoga is that one is using the power of devotion (mos gus gyi rtsal) to recapitulate the experience of the introduction, where as the former uses the more gradual process of working with this experience in the context of the two stages.

For the latter, having recognized what was introduced, the nature of the mind, one rests in that state.

These two methods, thw two stages and guru yoga, are more effective for giving rise to vipaśyanā because there is no intellectual analysis involved. It is based on a direct perception, no matter how fleeting, not inferred through reasoning and analysis.

Virtually all schools use a combination of guru yoga and the two stages combined into a single practice, for example Five-fold Mahāmudra of Drikung, Naro Khacho of Sakya, and so on. Sort of hedging bets.

Guru yoga in all Tibetan Buddhist schools is regarded as the supreme path to awakening, bar none. Because Kagyu Mahāmudra and Dzogchen are both paths of self-liberation (grol lam), rather than paths of transformation (sgyur lam), guru yoga is the principle path, especially in Dzogchen teachings. The principle difference between Kagyu Mahāmudra and Dzogchen, as Ringu Tulku personally confirmed for me, is that the former lacks tögal. But in the Karma Kagyu and Drukpa Kagyu school, it is quite common for practitioners to spend a long time practicing Mahāmudra, and then eventually embark on practicing tögal, Khenpo Tsultrim Gyatso, Thrangu RInpoche, etc., are all examples of masters who teach students using this progression. As I understand things in Drikung, having long association with Nangchen Drikungpas such as Gyalpo Rinpoche and Ontul Rinpoche, who are both important gurus of mine who specialize in Yangzab, people other than lineage heads usually choose one track or other other.
Last edited by Malcolm on Thu Jul 16, 2020 2:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by White Sakura »

Astus wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 2:03 pm
sutra-style Mahamudra teachings
Definition of that term again please.

:anjali:
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Malcolm »

White Sakura wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 2:40 pm
Astus wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 2:03 pm
sutra-style Mahamudra teachings
Definition of that term again please.

:anjali:
We've established there is no such thing, other than as a name for prajñāpāramitā, to inspire unfortunate yogis. If you examine Kongtrul's encycolpedia where he reviews the three kinds of Mahāmudra, it is quite clear in his writings that so-called sūtra mahāmudra is for inferior practitioners who are not ready for actual mahāmudra teachings. These days however, these three kinds of mahāmudra are not actually taught separately, as Cone pointed out, and furthermore, this is principally a Karma Kagyu scheme, as far I know.

Also in Sakya, in the Three Visions teachings of Lamdre, they do not use the term "mahāmudra" per se, but they do combine dohas with teachings on śamatha and vipaśyanā. For Nyingmapas, mahāmudra is either an alternate name for the state of Dzogchen, like Prajñapāramitā, or more commonly, refers to realizing the nature of the mind in the form of a yidam, and refers to the third of the four vidyādhara stages.
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Malcolm »

Astus wrote: Mon Jul 13, 2020 6:50 pm
If we take Gampopa's word on it, Mahamudra per se is neither sutra nor tantra, but beyond them.
This is because sutra is spangs lam, the path of renunciation, but in secret mantra systems, there are two paths, sgyur lam, the path of transformation and grol lam, the path of self-liberation. Both Kagyu Mahāmudra and Dzogchen belong to the last path.
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Malcolm »

Astus wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 2:03 pm
I studied and heard mainly some sutra-style Mahamudra teachings, so I'm not particularly familiar with other parts of Vajrayana.
Well, since you are a bodhisattva, you have an obligation to become expert in all dharma paths as much as possible. So, you better place yourself at the feet of a qualified Vajrayāna master quickly, because all the best ones are dying out pretty quickly.

I personally regret that first encounter with Zen was Eido Roshi, and that I was only 16 at the time when I did a weekend sesshin with him at Dai Bosatsu Zendo in the Catskills. Sometimes, when I am in a particularly generous mood, I am inclined to place Zen among the paths of self-liberation as well. But even when I not so inclined, Zen is the definitive expression of Mahāyāna sūtra paths, AFAIC. But I don't think I could ever practice with Meido. As much as I respect him, not into boot camps or martial arts. ;-) I am too much of an old hippy.
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by White Sakura »

Malcolm wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 2:43 pm
White Sakura wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 2:40 pm
Astus wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 2:03 pm
sutra-style Mahamudra teachings
Definition of that term again please.

:anjali:
We've established there is no such thing, other than as a name for prajñāpāramitā, to inspire unfortunate yogis. If you examine Kongtrul's encycolpedia where he reviews the three kinds of Mahāmudra, it is quite clear in his writings that so-called sūtra mahāmudra is for inferior practitioners who are not ready for actual mahāmudra teachings. These days however, the three kinds of mahāmudra are not actually taught as separate, and furthermore, this is principally a Karma Kagyu scheme, as far I know.
Yes Karma Kagyu is my lineage and what Astus explains is fitting to how I am taught.

I don´t believe Astus is "just a Zennie". He must have experience with the Karma Kagyu teachings.

If he was only reading books then why does he only cite masters from the Karma Kagyu lineage that follows Karmapa Urgyen Thinley Dorjee?? If he had no devotion and had never heard a Kagyu Master, then he could as well cite Ole Nydahl and Karmapa Thaye Dorjee and especially the respected late Sharmapa. Ole Nydahl is the most famous Karma Kagyu teacher in Europe.

Part of Astus arguments were confirmed here by a user who cited Ringu Tulku Rinpoche, the spiritual director of the Kagyu Lineage for Europe.( I mean for Karmapa Urgyuen Thinley Dorjee part of the Karma Kagyu). Please consider the fact that the spiritual director of the Kagyu Lineage for Europe is Karma Kagyu. This might be the explanation why Astus explanations follow this Karma Kagyu scheme. It is not because he is just a Zennie with no Kagyu knowledge. It is "european" Kagyu understanding.
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by White Sakura »

Malcolm wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 2:53 pm
Astus wrote: Mon Jul 13, 2020 6:50 pm
If we take Gampopa's word on it, Mahamudra per se is neither sutra nor tantra, but beyond them.
This is because sutra is spangs lam, the path of renunciation, but in secret mantra systems, there are two paths, sgyur lam, the path of transformation and grol lam, the path of self-liberation. Both Kagyu Mahāmudra and Dzogchen belong to the last path.
Just asking: If I am taught for nine days, eight hours every day on the Mahamudra prayer of third Karmapa, without a single mantra, Yidam or any other visualization being mentioned during this days-then what is that? Secret Mantra teaching?
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Astus »

Malcolm wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 2:32 pm These two methods, thw two stages and guru yoga, are more effective for giving rise to vipaśyanā because there is no intellectual analysis involved. It is based on a direct perception, no matter how fleeting, not inferred through reasoning and analysis.
What do you call then instructions like these?

'Establishing the appearance of the mind
is like a thief in an empty house.
It is beyond color, form, shape, and characteristics.
There is no searcher and no object of a search.
This is my heart's advice.
Mind and conceptual thought are like water and ice.
They have always been inseparable,
yet cannot be said to be one thing or two.
This is my heart's advice.
The inseparability of appearance and mind
is like last night's dream.
It possesses the four characteristics
and is the union of appearance and emptiness.
It cannot be said to be one thing or two.
This is my heart's advice.'

(The Jewel Treasury of Advice, p 35)
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"
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Malcolm »

White Sakura wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 3:11 pm
Malcolm wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 2:53 pm
Astus wrote: Mon Jul 13, 2020 6:50 pm
If we take Gampopa's word on it, Mahamudra per se is neither sutra nor tantra, but beyond them.
This is because sutra is spangs lam, the path of renunciation, but in secret mantra systems, there are two paths, sgyur lam, the path of transformation and grol lam, the path of self-liberation. Both Kagyu Mahāmudra and Dzogchen belong to the last path.
Just asking: If I am taught for nine days, eight hours every day on the Mahamudra prayer of third Karmapa, without a single mantra, Yidam or any other visualization being mentioned during this days-then what is that? Secret Mantra teaching?
There is actually a blessing empowerment connected with the the Dorjechangma.
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Malcolm »

Astus wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 4:03 pm
Malcolm wrote: Thu Jul 16, 2020 2:32 pm These two methods, thw two stages and guru yoga, are more effective for giving rise to vipaśyanā because there is no intellectual analysis involved. It is based on a direct perception, no matter how fleeting, not inferred through reasoning and analysis.
What do you call then instructions like these?

'Establishing the appearance of the mind
is like a thief in an empty house.
It is beyond color, form, shape, and characteristics.
There is no searcher and no object of a search.
This is my heart's advice.
Mind and conceptual thought are like water and ice.
They have always been inseparable,
yet cannot be said to be one thing or two.
This is my heart's advice.
The inseparability of appearance and mind
is like last night's dream.
It possesses the four characteristics
and is the union of appearance and emptiness.
It cannot be said to be one thing or two.
This is my heart's advice.'

(The Jewel Treasury of Advice, p 35)
Words and concepts.
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Danny »

Some Mahamudra teachers claim that Dzogchen is a side track distraction of straying into the innate. Dzogchen teachers assert everything leading up to and including mahamudra is flawed due to it being views retaining assumptions. If you want a difference between mahamudra and dzogchen I think that would be the basic intellectual argument. Personally it matters not that much, it’s still sugata-essence.
Last edited by Danny on Thu Jul 16, 2020 6:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Sutra, Tantra, Mahamudra

Post by Sennin »

Good thread.
A lot of great jewels.
:popcorn:
Observe the difference between the Lord of All Victors, Padmasambhava, and the mahasiddhas of India and Tibet.
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