Wednesday, November 27, 2019

The Grounding of Johnny Blue


**************************

"Des femmes descendant de leur miroir ancien
T'apportent leur jeunesse et leur foi en la tienne
Et l'une sa clarte la voile qui t'entraine
Te fait secretement voir le monde sans toi
-o-
C'est avec nous que tout vivra."
Paul Eluard....Paris: 1926

**************************

As desire relaxes its once furtive grasp into appreciation and that looked to is seen so
vividly in the light far traveled entering our morning window, and as you lay so still asleep with eyes closed softly in dream passion remembrance, I read slowly to you...

"Women coming down from their ancient mirror
Bringing their youth and their faith in yours..."

A ceaseless snow morning and I for the longest time without touching stroke your face with soft looking and then one hand into warmth unseen beneath pale silk and you so slightly move. ... Remembrance thoughts of lovemaking before sleep intertwine themselves with the details of freshly lit incense on my senses........the sounds of your even, still breathing punctuate the silence.... if only one could hold a single moment in life's time it would be this first awakening sunrise moment, as you lie so still asleep....... dreaming...

"And one her light the sail which leads you off
Helps you secretly see the world without you..."

I look to a bedside broken mirror reflecting only and for always the flow of present time with no memory recalled of our passionwalk up the silverglass that night and the look of surprise in your pleased with broken reflection eyes as minds halted into disbelief laughter... now, etched so vividly in this first of morning mind is the midnight candleglow beauty of your milkskin tenderness ways and scents, softfold delicate petals of skin...
"-o-
It is with us that everything will live."

**************************

Deepest winter and snowing heavily in these mountain pines as I read the Eluard...
that ancient mirror in the Paris of 1926, he must have known the moments clearly ....
the Emperor's mirrorview at Ise...

Wildflowers drying in a celadon window... colours revealed as remaining moisture captures this first light of day.......beauty fades into the yugen beyond form, then softly disappears...

**************************

I committed to the teachings in July of 1969 in the Sangre de Christo mountains near Taos, New Mexico, as the result of conversations with an elderly landscape painter named Herman Reznick, a Christian yogin with a very big mind who left it up to me to find a clear path and to not be confused by charlatans. We sat those long crimson New Mexico seasky summer evenings on the western view slope of those beautiful mountains, warm pinion air breezing hauntingly soft...breath slow minds focused on dry distant horizons...slow, end of sunlight... talking...

Oil painting days, strong summer colours
Mixed in the mind with riverbank clays,
Dried bone whites along high mountain trails,
The hues of a soft brilliant sky.

Vision deepening...
Colours and scents
Worked through the fingertips
Of a long, still gaze...

Phenomena seem as translucent flow,
Unreal yet visible, floating ... thatness
In the oceanmind world we swim.

At the Pueblo de Taos, white sage summer dances with slow ritual movement ... the elders motionless in their blankets bright woven and the adobe children with their deep, darkened eyes in wonderland play with laughter voices...red earth dust on their feet, lips soft as cottonwood seed. To the the west hours distant, pastel thunderhead clouds and into the east, highland green mountains with sacred spirit lakes and crystalline drala caves.

As the edge of day's light fading quickly into darkness the wildflowers return softly into their glow, pinion and juniper scents grow fainter, then slowly disappear. Bloodwarm animals move ghostlike from shade into shadow. An aging desert coyote poet speaks his mind then dissolves slowly into the yellow.

Mind moves...the high desert lies quietly for centuries.

**************************

Child's mind is beginningless and has no end with the light and colour shapes of imagination play darknesses opening into a continuous present childtime so preconception rich with laughter and short sadnesses and tears-love-pain so vividly woven into abstraction days of stormpassing yellows and shy vermilion desire heart-touched now to a remembered soft blue and as one grows older the illusions of goal and fascination with speed erode the sensibilities and benumb the feelings, nourishing the chasm that develops between who in reality we are and what in thought illusion we pretend to be. Conceptualization obscures basic perception and we become preoccupied lost in a blackened fog of impotent literary materialism with the childwonder corrupting into superficial distraction, continuously falling, deeply fading falling into the depths of a convinced self-solidity.

Cool blue and fragile green
Dappled sapphire
Dot in white space
Spins aimlessly thru vastness
Warmed by a powerful ruby sun.

Southwest desert sunrise
(Blood of Christ Mountains)
A tiny brilliant rose-amber spider
Climbs a sparkled glistening web
Seeking shelter in soft morning shadows.

There came a place on the dreamwater stream
Where I began to see further.

**************************

I returned that autumn to San Francisco to study Zen with Suzuki Roshi, whom I had met previously yet couldn't particularly figure out. Cut the blonde hair short and rode 5 am streetcars through alone darkened streets to the Bush Street shrineroom with its stark shadow outlines and incense scent staircase creaking and sat the difficult sunrise morning hours silently watching the edges of discursive minds exhausting gently into themselves. Studied the flower and tea rituals, cut the arrogant branches, wondered of his theory of time and beauty and came so close....

The young Tibetan came to teach in the summer of 1970 and he was relaxed fresh, unpredictable...and I sat close very zenlike in complete fascination of his mind and manner and finally discovered my true heart...went to see him a few days later and he was drunk and I walked away in disappointment and swirled for days in confusion then finally decided to find out what was me and what was him.

Having seen your face
And heard your soft voice
Watched you slowly limpwalk into the room...

Glimpses of openness suddenly occurred
And what always seemed me
Softened into yearning...

A young man with a corpse on his back
Proceeds slowly eastward
Through the phenomenal swirl.

**************************

Stillness until one slight awakening stir,
And out an opened window the beauty of slowly falling snow.
The pines grow bluer in the shadow light of this storm...
Pearldust drala wonderland.

Morning alone, exploring the details of crimson on candlelit brocade as I practice with the brush then offer the morning tea and the two visualizations and remembered incantations with the blackstroke ink dissolving down the central crystal channel to the white heart projecting and awakening all the while to the inviting white smoke of dried juniper rising into the windsongs of sky galloping horses and the snow... the snow still falling...perfectly slowly falling...dissolving... rising, swirling, striving, purling, falling...melting...

this landscape binds into a refulgent crystalling splendor...

binding, falling, dissolving, rising...

life, and death too, are both good.

**************************

I left for Colorado and spent the weeks walking clear mountain streams and driving backcountry roads drinking with young, pretty companions and as always the endless craziness developed and dissolved and how often you came to mind...how affectionately the images arose...

Early October...the radio and writing
Out an open window...patches of snow up the mountainside
Sky: clear and blue like ordinary mind.
Pine trees and streams, rocks...Yun.

Last night a full moon too beautiful to speak about
Today, relaxed and thinking of you...
The flow of a gentle warmth through these veins
Geomantic completeness...empty heart.

Slowly falling snow through a dream morning window...senses exploring senses, mind training mind....then unexpectedly, one timeless pause in the absolute center of completely centerless space.

**************************

I unexpectedly met him standing alone late one summer night in Boulder on a darkened downtown street with the people busily passing and for the first time it occurred to me how alone he must have been in this world with that mind of his and as the years have passed that understanding has deepened, along with others... Only a fool shields himself with softness.

In a crystalline shallow pool
Deep in some distant mountains
A brilliantly golden fish
Swims wavely perfect in aloneness.

Able to speak...there is no one to listen
Surrounded by steep, rocky cliffs
The clear, pure water can't flow
To the faraway sea.

Lonely for his true parents
This flower of the dream-water
Prepares to fly...

**************************

In the winter of 1981 I spent three months in a large group meditation retreat at Chateau Lake Louise, deep in the Canadian Rockies. During the third difficult day of gently persistent outbreath sitting meditation I completely lost ground...began swimming in a quicksand like mind of confusion, murky and bottomless with a complete swirling and the tremendous energy surging and the perceptual world without any solidity. My body was no longer clearly defined with the boundaries of skin to which I had grown accustomed and I had to take long, cold showers in to return to a more solid state. I learned from those quicksand days not to panic ... regardless of what occurred, nor to push my way through. Each moment required complete focus.

As those days and nights of terror/wonder passed, the sandvision turbulence clarified gradually into an ocean of energy which flowed into, through and about and never for an instant was one separate ... with the soft touch out breath dissolving gently into space without texture ... and the steep mental climbs past rockcloud bound kleshas and finally the relaxed soar into mind brilliant blue sky ... that tremendous shock of blue...
A very strong connection with the earth had begun to occur and I could always feel the incredibly powerful energy flowing up through my very heavy feet...

Dream/past dream/present dream/future.....
Awakening from a lifedream of confusion,
Feet painlessly nailed to this powerful earth...
And whatever these days I write for you
Is a giftstone tossed to a surfaceless sea,
Playful waves polishingly churning...
Ghostdance sailors of the golden-butter sea .......

**************************

Deep into that blue/glacier winter, powerful experiences continued to occur. Late one night morning as he spoke I began to experience an extremely vivid mirror-like reality and from the center of that exploding perception brightness he smiled a go further look and suddenly with a tremendous jolt the body completely dissolved and there I sat in gone-out wonder nodding gently that I finally understood the precious mind of the lineage and all the while I felt like ancient Tilopa sitting alone unseen in complete reality madness on the banks of a farago river ... riverrun.

The world we look into is a shadowcave mirror
Platonic dreamplay puppets
Projected by the heart mind resting nowhere in stillness.

Reflections impossible to grasp, taste, even touch...
Nothing listening to nothing, nothing happening to see.

Died alive Johnny ... Blue eyes breathing fire
Heartblood gushing through central vein channels.

Into that mirror without any dust
There is nothing left nothing ...
Nothing to say.

I walked the empty Chateau Lake Louise corridors deep into that sleepless night somewhat past aloneness and all the while felt so very sensitive to the softer light worlds of the dead. Sat alone until dawn at the glacier view window in a candleglow appreciation of the richness and patience of the lineage, and the ocean-mind world which was sensed but unseen until that alone luminous night.

**************************

Morning, alone ... exploring the details of crimson on candlelit brocade as I practice with the brush then offer the morning tea and the two visualizations and remembered incantations with the blackstroke ink dissolving down the central crystal channel to the white heart projecting and awakening all the while to the inviting white smoke of dried juniper rising into the windsongs of sky galloping horses and the snow... still falling...
perfectly slowly falling...dissolving...
rising, swirling, striving, purling, falling...melting...

The landscape binds into a refulgent crystalline splendor...

Binding, falling, dissolving, rising...
Life, and Death too, are both good.

**************************

The return to Colorado was extremely difficult with all the mechanical energy and people along the street glued to their senses, mindlessly drawn along from one shop window to another. Eyes away cold on faces with no light and I as usual with so little to say walked the day slowly through movie streets, watching...

Sitting motionless...bones harden into rock...
Mind pours into itself...senses achieve astonishing clarity...
Awareness without memory, luminous vision with no expectation...
An indestructible essence is realized... there is no longer fear...
To taste again mind without any taste, to swim in its ocean of brilliance...
To touch the earth with these soft hands, mirror-hand-lines reminding...
To leave the stone footprints, for others to follow.

Two mirrors: no reflection...
First Trungpa, weeks later alive Blue Vajradhara.

**************************

Into the closing hours of this reverie room, naked feet warmed to a footprint stone floor, the fires of the earth slowly rising and from that which flows so mysteriously of mind unseen into the seed of heart and through a whitened throat with the words as blossoms and then down a powerful arm, softstroked to the touch yet deep within a current of pure steelhardened energy... slow continuous to rockbone fingertips ... the words arising from a speechless silence.

Waiting downstream for the poetry boats of Li Po,
The brilliance of occurrence unfettered by sense organs.
Nothing comes.

Cool blue face with mirror reflection tears,
Eyes wetsparkling....Reality.

In an ocean of love there is no seduction...
The eyes won't turn away nor quiver
Yet the heart does ... it has so little discipline.

**************************

Cremation Day. Vermont

Spring cricket music fields edged by a fragile green forest
Birch and alder leaves blow softly across a pale blue sky
In a distant valley, woodcutters
Yet mostly silence, mostly beauty.
Back into the forest, traces of white smoke continue skyward...
So many faces today

Awakening once again to an ocean of aloneness
I feel the breeze of your soft breath
Across my face and through the body
And vow to repay you.

On Viewing the Relics...Faceless face on a blackened charred head in airless bellglass so vividly seen yet more than a skull because there's so much burnt tissue, especially inside with the right eye socket blown out so completely and the left with blackburnt bandages still ashened across it, a few hairs.... no lips, no nose, no tongue, nor ears nor eyes...unmistakable forehead...while across this same room a photo and I look back and forth from image to relic with such astonished wonder and such incredible sadness. The smiles will never come again, nor the jokes and complaints, and no more poems from the firemelted lips.... the commands have all been given...

Coal blackened head with a memory face etched so completely in that Lake Louise mirror. The soft, high voice with carefully arranged words uplifting with simply said things. No longer a throat, the voice cords to white smoke. Too real to look at, a presence so strong... and then bending sadly into one last farewell an invisible heavy hand comes down to bless....
Ki Ki So So

**************************

It was the Rigden's birthday poetry, nothing was to be eaten. I sat in secret in the rocks above, August morning watching my sun child dive happily into torn tent openings. A good place to die, I thought, mind chained to these rocks undisturbed a few days with the roller coaster of elements quickly dissolving, earth body to water then fire into wind/space and whatever ... the softer light ones vermillion sky dancing... brilliant white clouds......the Sun!

It's a Rilkian Inscape, the senses can come too...
With the poetry dancing it's touched naked appreciation...
Stormed palace lady of red ...
Oh mirrored Blue......
Above the relic plain, things settle themselves.

**************************

Having ridden the powerful breathhorse into the fourth time
and viewed Shambhala with it's gemstone streets and
brilliantly coloured forests and valleys...

Walked this earth with it's molten sunlike center
and for months carried it's powerful, nourishing energy
in these incredibly heavy feet...

Then one day a glimpse of your soft eyes
in an unexpected meeting, and my life is once again
abandoned to the madness of poetry...

**************************

From "The Vermillion Journal of Eidolon Johnny Blue"

JTH

Writings 1981-1987

Contact.....1-505-289-9612

Sunday, January 20, 2019

A Rainbow Of Chaos

**************************

"An informal review of published materials exploring the history, myths, legends, languages, geography, terms, practices, teachers and teachings of the ancient Central Asian 'Kingdom of Shambhala'."

**************************

**************************

There is a vast store of energy which is not centered, which is not ego’s energy at all. It is this energy which is the centerless dance of phenomena, the universe interpenetrating and making love to itself. It has two characteristics: a fire quality of warmth and a tendency to flow in a particular pattern, in the same way in which fire contains a spark as well as the air which directs the spark. And this energy is always ongoing, whether or not it is seen through the confused filter of ego. It cannot be destroyed or interrupted at all. It is like the everburning sun. It consumes everything to the point where it allows no room for doubt or manipulation.

But when this heat is filtered through ego, it becomes stagnant, because we ignore the basic ground, refuse to see the vast space in which this energy occurs. Then the energy cannot flow freely in the open space shared with the object of passion. Instead it is solidified, narrowed, and directed by the central headquarters of ego to move outward in order to draw the object of passion into its territory. This captive energy extends out to its object and then returns to be programmed again. We extend our tentacles and try to fix our relationship. This attempt to cling to the situation makes the communication process superficial. We just touch another person’s surface and get stuck there, never experiencing their whole being. We are blinded by our clinging. The object of passion, instead of being bathed in the intense warmth of free passion, feels oppressed by the stifling heat of neurotic passion.

Love Story.....A cautionary tale from Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche

**************************

Under this fine rain I breathe in the innocence of the world. I feel coloured by the nuances of infinity. At this moment I am one with my picture. We are an iridescent chaos…

“I will astonish Paris with an apple......Fruit… like having their portrait painted. They seem to sit there and ask your forgiveness for fading. Their thought is given off with their perfumes. They come with all their scents, they speak of the fields they have left, the rain which has nourished them, the daybreaks they have seen.....It’s so fine and yet so terrible to stand in front of a blank canvas.

Genius is the ability to renew one’s emotions in daily experience.

Time and reflection… modify, little by little, our vision, and at last comprehension comes to us.

For an Impressionist to paint from nature is not to paint the subject, but to realize sensation.

The painter unfolds that which has not been seen.

I could paint for a hundred years, a thousand years without stopping and I would still feel as though I knew nothing.

What I am trying to translate to you is more mysterious; it is entwined in the very roots of being, in the implacable source of sensations.

I am still searching for the expression of those confused sensations that we bring with us at birth.

Time and reflection… modify, little by little, our vision, and at last comprehension comes to us.

I have to keep working, not to arrive at finish, which arouses the admiration of fools… I must seek completion only for the pleasure of being truer and more knowing....I am progressing very slowly, for nature reveals herself to me in very complex forms.......We live in a rainbow of chaos.

**************************

Albert Einstein.....

A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”

Human beings, vegetables, or cosmic dust, we all dance to a mysterious tune, intoned in the distance by an invisible piper.

When the poet Paul Valery once asked Albert Einstein if he kept a notebook to record his ideas, Einstein looked at him with mild but genuine surprise. "Oh, that's not necessary," he replied . "It's so seldom I have one.”

Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.

Logic will get you from A to B. imagination will take you everywhere.

Reality is merely an illusion.

It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with the questions longer.

Energy is liberated matter, matter is energy waiting to happen. ....Everything is energy and that’s all there is to it.

.....space is no longer something distinct from matter, it is one of the "material" components of the world. An entity that undulates, flexes, curves, twists. We are not contained within an invisible, rigid infrastructure: we are immersed in a gigantic, flexible snail shell. The sun bends space around itself, and the Earth does not turn around it because of a mysterious force but because it is racing directly in a space which inclines, like a marble that rolls in a funnel. There are no mysterious forces generated at the centre of the funnel; it is the curved nature of the walls which causes the marble to roll......Planets circle around the sun, and things fall, because space curves.

Einstein predicted that time passes more quickly high up than below, nearer to the Earth...... If a man who has lived at sea level meets up with his twin who has lived in the mountains, he will find that his sibling is slightly older than him.

Einstein describes a colourful and amazing world where universes explode, space collapses into bottomless holes, time sags and slows near a planet, and the unbounded extensions of interstellar space ripple and sway like the surface of the sea

**************************

As Chögyam Trungpa explains, from the perspective of the mandala principle, existence is orderly chaos. There is chaos and confusion because everything happens by itself, without any external ordering principle. At the same time, whatever happens expresses order and intelligence, wakeful energy and precision. Through meditative practices associated with the mandala principle, the opposites of experience—confusion and enlightenment, chaos and order, pain and pleasure—are revealed as inseparable parts of a total vision of reality.

**************************

**************************

**************************

Chaos theory is a branch of mathematics focusing on the behavior of dynamical systems that are highly sensitive to initial conditions. "Chaos" is an interdisciplinary theory stating that within the apparent randomness of chaotic complex systems, there are underlying patterns, constant feedback loops, repetition, self-similarity, fractals, self-organization, and reliance on programming at the initial point known as sensitive dependence on initial conditions.

**************************

In classic Taoist cosmology, matter and energy are thought to be governed by five basic movements. The strength and influence of these movements wax and wane over the course of a year... all phenomena, such as our bodies and the distant stars, are constructed of the same basic particles of energy and that this energy is always in motion. Imagine everything as part of a vast, never-ending, always-changing grid or sea of energy. Tao is that energy and “all is Tao”.

**************************

This is where lalita, the dance, comes in. You dance with reality, dance with apparent phenomena. When you want something very badly you do not extend your eye and hand automatically; you just admire. Instead of impulsively making a move from your side, you allow a move from the other side, which is learning to dance with the situation. You do not have to create the whole situation; you just watch it, work with it, and learn to dance with it. So then it does not become your creation, but rather a mutual dance. No one is self-conscious, because it is a mutual experience.

Love Story..... Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche

**************************

Click Here to view the Okar Research Index

Email: okarresearch@gmail.com

John Hopkins....New Mexico

**************************

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Skardu

**************************

Click Here to View the Main Index

**************************

Rinpungpa's Guidebook (written in 1557 AD) locates Shambhala north of the Kashmir Valley and south of the Wakhan Corridor.....

Rinpungpa, aka: "The Scholar King". A Tibetan prince who was the last of a dynasty of Ministers who ruled Tibet during the 15 and 16th centuries. He was considered one of the finest poets of the Tibetan language. Composed a guidebook to Shambhala in 1557 called "The Knowledge Bearing Messenger" as a letter to his dead father whom he believed to have been reborn in Shambhala. Complex and ornate style derived from the Sanskrit poetry of India.

**************************

"The Kashmir Valley, also known as the Vale of Kashmir, is a valley in the portion of the Kashmir region administered by India. The valley is bounded on the southwest by the Pir Panjal Range and on the northeast by the main Himalayas range. It is approximately 135 km long and 32 km wide, and drained by the Jhelum River.

From: Rinpungpa's Guidebook to Shambhala .... "The Knowledge Bearing Messenger" (1557 AD) ...."Crossing Tibet westward.....to the sacred mountain of Kailas ....from Kailas continue northwest to Ladakh and down through mountains and forest to the Vale of Kashmir..(Kashmir Valley)........ then north, through a maze of treacherous mountains....you will pass safely through and come out in the land of the Paksik, horsemen who wear white turbans......over an 'outer ring' of sky-high ice mountains, down through a vicious desert, into unknown vistas....only to reach a second 'inner ring' of snow mountains. Beyond there, you must choose rightly among high valleys and low cities, having the good sense to know Shambhala when you reach it.........then you will at last, see the cities of Shambhala.....gleaming among ranges of snow mountains like stars on the waves of the Ocean of Milk."

**************************

**************************

Skardu (Urdu: سکردو‎, Balti: སྐར་མདོ་་) is a city in Gilgit-Baltistan region of Pakistan, and serves as the capital of Skardu District. Skardu is located in the 6 miles wide by 25 miles long Skardu Valley, at the confluence of the Indus and Shigar Rivers at an altitude of nearly 8,200 feet. The city is an important gateway to the nearby Karakoram Mountain range. The town is located on the Indus river, which separates the Karakoram Range from the Himalayas.

Coordinates: 35°17′25″N....... 75°38′40″E
Pakistan.... Autonomous territory of Gilgit Baltistan....District Skardu
Elevation 2,228 m (7,310 ft)
Population: 500,000

Lower Kachura Lake (Urdu: لوؤر کچورا جھیل‎), also known as Shangrila Lake (Urdu: شنگریلا جھیل‎) is located in Kachura village 20 minutes from Skardu city (nearly 2,500 m or 8,200 feet) town. The lake is also known as Shangrila lake after Shangri-la resort is built in 1983....

**************************

Gilgit Baltistan......Buddhism came to this part of the country in the late 7th century when most of the masses were practicing bon religion. Before the arrival of Islam, Tibetan Buddhism and Bön were the main religions in Baltistan. Buddhism can be traced back to before the formation of the Tibetan Empire. The region has a number of surviving Buddhist archaeological sites. These include the Manthal Buddha Rock, a rock relief of the Buddha at the edge of the village (near Skardu) and the Sacred Rock of Hunza. Nearby are former sites of Buddhist shelters......Baltistan had Buddhist majority till the 15th century, before the arrival of Islam in this region. Since then most of the people converted to Islam, the presence of Buddhism in this region has now been limited to archeological sites, as the remaining Buddhists of this region moved east to Ladakh where Buddhism is the majority religion.

**************************

Manthal Buddha Rock (Urdu: منٹھل چٹان‎) is a large granite rock on which picture of Buddha has engraved which probably dates back to 8 century. This rock is located in Manthal village of Skardu, in Pakistan. Buddha Rock is one of the most important relics of Buddhism in Skardu. It's about 3 kilometers from Sadpara Road. Sadpara road will lead to Satpara Lake......Before arrival of Islam in the region of Gilgit-Baltistan the majority of the people were Buddhist and they had engraved the Buddha on many rock pieces. This Buddha carving was not known to the world till beginning of 20th century due to its remote location. In 1906 the Scottish traveler Ella Christie wrote a book on her journey to the Western Tibet

**************************

**************************

**************************

**************************

Okar Research was begun in 1979 in order to annotate and deepen my understanding of the Shambhala Terma Texts received by Chogyam Trungpa:
Golden Sun of the Great East....Received as terma in October, 1976.
Letter of the Black Ashe....Received as terma in January, 1978.
Letter of the Golden Key that Fulfills Desire....Received as terma in October, 1978.
Scorpion Seal of the Golden Sun....Received in 1980...A long and a short version exist.

John Hopkins....Northern New Mexico

Email....okarresearch@gmail.com

November 2018

**************************

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Rinpungpa's Guidebook To Shambhala & the Kashmir Valley

**************************

Click Here to View the Main Index

**************************

Rinpungpa's Guidebook (written in 1557 AD) locates Shambhala north of the Kashmir Valley and south of the Wakhan Corridor.....

Rinpungpa, aka: "The Scholar King". A Tibetan prince who was the last of a dynasty of Ministers who ruled Tibet during the 15 and 16th centuries. He was considered one of the finest poets of the Tibetan language. Composed a guidebook to Shambhala in 1557 called "The Knowledge Bearing Messenger" as a letter to his dead father whom he believed to have been reborn in Shambhala. Complex and ornate style derived from the Sanskrit poetry of India.

**************************

"The Kashmir Valley, also known as the Vale of Kashmir, is a valley in the portion of the Kashmir region administered by India. The valley is bounded on the southwest by the Pir Panjal Range and on the northeast by the main Himalayas range. It is approximately 135 km long and 32 km wide, and drained by the Jhelum River.

From: Rinpungpa's Guidebook to Shambhala .... "The Knowledge Bearing Messenger" (1557 AD) ...."Crossing Tibet westward.....to the sacred mountain of Kailas ....from Kailas continue northwest to Ladakh and down through mountains and forest to the Vale of Kashmir..(Kashmir Valley)........ then north, through a maze of treacherous mountains....you will pass safely through and come out in the land of the Paksik, horsemen who wear white turbans......over an 'outer ring' of sky-high ice mountains, down through a vicious desert, into unknown vistas....only to reach a second 'inner ring' of snow mountains. Beyond there, you must choose rightly among high valleys and low cities, having the good sense to know Shambhala when you reach it.........then you will at last, see the cities of Shambhala.....gleaming among ranges of snow mountains like stars on the waves of the Ocean of Milk."

**************************

Mount Kailash (also Mount Kailasa; Kangrinboqê or Gang Rinpoche; Tibetan: གངས་རིན་པོ་ཆེ; Chinese: 冈仁波齐峰 (simplified); Chinese: 岡仁波齊峰 (traditional)), is a 6,638 m (21,778 ft) high peak in the Kailash Range (Gangdisê Mountains), which forms part of Transhimalaya in the Tibet Autonomous Region of China. The mountain is located near Lake Manasarovar and Lake Rakshastal, close to the source of some of the longest Asian rivers: the Indus, Sutlej, Brahmaputra, and Karnali also known as Ghaghara (a tributary of the Ganges) in India. Mount Kailash is considered to be sacred in four religions: Bon, Buddhism, Hinduism and Jainism.

Ladakh ("land of high passes") is a region in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir that currently extends from the Siachen Glacier in the Karakoram range to the main Great Himalayas to the south, inhabited by people of Indo-Aryan and Tibetan descent.It is one of the most sparsely populated regions in Jammu and Kashmir and its culture and history are closely related to that of Tibet. Ladakh is renowned for its remote mountain beauty and culture.

The Kashmir Valley, also known as the Vale of Kashmir, is a valley in the portion of the Kashmir region administered by India. The valley is bounded on the southwest by the Pir Panjal Range and on the northeast by the main Himalayas range. It is approximately 135 km long and 32 km wide, and drained by the Jhelum River.The Kashmir division borders Jammu Division to the south and Ladakh to the east while Line of Control forms its northern and the western border........"In the first half of the 1st millennium, the Kashmir region became an important centre of Hinduism and later of Buddhism; later still, in the ninth century, Kashmir Shaivism arose. In 1339, Shah Mir became the first Muslim ruler of Kashmir, inaugurating the Salatin-i-Kashmir or Swati dynasty.......

Shigar (Urdu: شگر‎) is a district in the Baltistan division of Gilgit–Baltistan in the north of Skardu in northern Pakistan. The Shigar River, bisecting the Shigar valley, falls in the Indus River at Skardu city. The town is a popular site for tourists and trekkers and contains many historical buildings of architectural significance associated with the all communities. The town is inhabited 100% by Balti people of Tibetan descent. Almost 95% people belongs to Shia sect of Islam and the remaining belongs to the Sunni and the Norbakshi sects. It is the gateway to great mountain range of Karakorum.... The valley is very fertile and rich in fruits including apples, cherries, apricots, pears and walnuts.

Lower Kachura Lake (Urdu: لوؤر کچورا جھیل‎), also known as Shangrila Lake(Urdu: شنگریلا جھیل‎) is located in Kachura village 20 minutes from Skardu city (nearly 2,500 m or 8,200 feet) town. The lake is also known as Shangrila lake after a resort built on its bank in 1983....Shangrila Resort Hotel was founded by the late Muhammad Aslam Khan, the first commander of the Northern Scouts of the Pakistan Army.....Shangrila was named after a book titled Lost Horizon by James Hilton.

Two thousand or more Tibetans have made their home in Srinagar. These are Tibetan Muslims. A few Muslim families remain in the Tibetan capital, Lhasa; some live in border hill towns; but most of them have now settled in Indian Kashmir....The community traces its origin to merchants who travelled along the old silk routes. They were Muslim traders from Kashmir and the adjoining area of Ladakh. Four hundred or so years ago, the then Dalai Lama granted them land in the Tibetan capital...After a failed uprising against Chinese Communist rule, the Dalai Lama and thousands of his Buddhist devotees fled across the Himalayas in 1959. Then, Tibet's Muslim community also felt restive. They were seen by some Tibetans as collaborators with the new Chinese rulers. After a lot of diplomatic push-and-pull, in which the Indian government took an interest, Muslims were allowed to leave Tibet...Dalai Lama visits Kashmir, first time in 24 years....

**************************

The Pashtuns (/ˈpʌʃˌtʊnz/, /ˈpɑːʃˌtʊnz/ or /ˈpæʃˌtuːnz/; Pashto: پښتانه‎ Pax̌tānə; singular masculine: پښتون Pax̌tūn, feminine: پښتنه Pax̌tana; also Pukhtuns), historically known as ethnic Afghans (Persian: افغان‎, Afğān)and Pathans (Hindustani: پٹھان, पठान, Paṭhān), are an Iranic ethnic group who mainly live in Pakistan and Afghanistan....Historians have come across references to various ancient peoples called Pakthas (Pactyans) between the 2nd and the 1st millennium BC,who may be their early ancestors. Their history is mostly spread amongst the present-day countries of Afghanistan and Pakistan, centred on their traditional seat of power in that region. ....

Afghanistan possesses a rich linguistic legacy of pre-Islamic scripts, which existed before being displaced by the Arabic alphabet, after the Islamic conquest of Afghanistan. Among these scripts are Sharada, Gandhari, Kharosthi, Bactrian and Brāhmī . For thousands of years, Afghanistan was inhabited by Indo-Vedic people and thus all ancient documents, tracts, monuments and remains are of Hindu origins. Later, Buddhism became the major force in Afghanistan and brought with it its own liturgical languages.........Abundant archeological evidence in the form of inscriptions, numismatics and manuscripts[citation needed] has provided traces of the precursors of the contemporary Languages of Afghanistan such as Pashto, Dari and other Dardic languages.

Okar Research was begun in 1979 in order to annotate and deepen my understanding of the Shambhala Terma Texts received by Chogyam Trungpa:
Golden Sun of the Great East....Received as terma in October, 1976.
Letter of the Black Ashe....Received as terma in January, 1978.
Letter of the Golden Key that Fulfills Desire....Received as terma in October, 1978.
Scorpion Seal of the Golden Sun....Received in 1980...A long and a short version exist.

John Hopkins....Northern New Mexico

Email....okarresearch@gmail.com

November 2018

**************************

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Waiting To Die


"Spirituality is a particular term which actually means dealing with intuition in the theistic tradition the notion of clinging into a word....a certain act is regarded as displeasing to a divine principle, a certain act is regarded as pleasing for the divine, whatever....in the tradition of non-theism however, it is very direct that the case history are not particularly important...what is actually important is Here and Now ... Now is definitely Now...we try to experience what is available there on the spot...there is no point in thanking that the past did exist that we could have now... this is now... this very moment nothing mystical just simple straightforward and from that nowness however arises a sense of intelligence always that you are constantly interacting with your reality one by one spot by spot constantly we actually experience fantastic precision always but we are threatened by the now so we jump to the past or the future paying attention to the materials that exist in our life all these choices takes place all the time but none of them are regarded as bad or good per se everything we experience are unconditional experience they don't come along as a label saying this is regarded as bad or this is good but we experience them but we do not actually pay heed to them properly we don't actually regard that as we are going somewhere regard that as a hassle waiting to be dead that's a problem that is not trusting your nowness properly but what is actually experienced now posess a lot of powerful things it is so powerful that we can't face it therefore we have to borrow from the past and invite the future all the time and maybe that's why we seek religion maybe that's why we march in the street maybe that's why we complain to society maybe that's why we vote for the presidents it's quite ironical very un(?)ending....."

Chogyam Trungpa

Okar Research was begun in 1979 in order to annotate and deepen my understanding of the Shambhala Terma Texts received by Chogyam Trungpa:
Golden Sun of the Great East....Received as terma in October, 1976.
Letter of the Black Ashe....Received as terma in January, 1978.
Letter of the Golden Key that Fulfills Desire....Received as terma in October, 1978.
Scorpion Seal of the Golden Sun....Received in 1980...A long and a short version exist.

John Hopkins....Northern New Mexico

Email....okarresearch@gmail.com

November 2018

**************************

Friday, April 6, 2018

Dzogchen Overview

**************************


Dzogchen
the primordial state in Tibetan Buddhism and Bön.
Tibetan: རྫོགས་ཆེན་
Wylie transliteration: rdzogs chen
(rdzogs pa chen po)
pronunciation in IPA: [tsɔktɕʰẽ]
official transcription (PRC): Zogqên
THDL: Dzokchen
other transcriptions: Dzogchen
Chinese name
traditional: 大究竟、
大圓滿、
大成就
simplified: 大究竟、
大圆满、
大成就
Pinyin: dàjiūjìng,
dàyuánmǎn,
dàchéngjiù

According to Tibetan Buddhism and Bön, Dzogchen (Rdzogs chen or Atiyoga) is the natural, primordial state or natural condition, and a body of teachings and meditation practices aimed at realizing that condition. Dzogchen, or "Great Perfection", is a central teaching of the Nyingma school also practiced by adherents of other Tibetan Buddhist sects. According to Dzogchen literature, Dzogchen is the highest and most definitive path to enlightenment.

From the perspective of Dzogchen, the ultimate nature of all sentient beings is said to be pure, all-encompassing, primordial clarity or naturally occurring timeless clarity. This intrinsic clarity has no form of its own and yet is capable of perceiving, experiencing, reflecting, or expressing all form. It does so without being affected by those forms in any ultimate, permanent way. The analogy given by Dzogchen masters is that one's nature is like a mirror which reflects with complete openness but is not affected by the reflections, or like a crystal ball that takes on the colour of the material on which it is placed without itself being changed. The knowledge that ensues from recognizing this mirror-like clarity (which cannot be found by searching nor identified) is what Dzogchenpas refer to as rigpa.

There is a fairly wide consensus among lamas of both the Nyingma and Sarma schools that the end state of dzogchen and mahamudra are the same. The Madhyamaka teachings on emptiness are fundamental to and thoroughly compatible with Dzogchen practices. Essence Mahamudra is viewed as being the same as Dzogchen, except the former doesn't include thödgal.

The word Dzogchen has been translated variously as Great Perfection, Great Completeness, Total Completeness, and Supercompleteness. These terms also convey the idea that our nature has many qualities that make it perfect. These include indestructibility, incorruptible purity, non-discriminating openness, flawless clarity, profound simplicity, all-pervading presence and equality within all beings (i.e., the quality, quantity and functionality of this awareness is exactly the same in every being in the universe). It is said that the impressive personal qualities of the fully enlightened Buddha are derived from the fact that he was fully aligned with this already-existing primordial nature. Descriptions of a buddha as omniscient and omnipresent refer to their ultimate nature. The Tibetan term dzogchen is sometimes said to be a rendering of the Sanskrit term mahāsandhi, and is also used to render the Sanskrit term ati yoga (primordial yoga).

A homonymous term dzogchen designates a practice and also a body of teachings aimed at helping an individual to recognize the Dzogchen state, to become sure about it, and to develop the capacity to maintain the state continually.

In his work on Jamgon Ju Mipham Gyatso's Beacon of Certainty: Illuminating the View of Dzogchen, the Great Perfection, John Pettit clarifies the various usages and implications of the term Dzogchen that are often conflated:

"Great Perfection" variously indicates the texts (āgama, lung) and oral instructions (upadeśa, man ngag) that indicate the nature of enlightened wisdom (rdzogs chen gyi gzhung dang man ngag), the verbal conventions of those texts (rdzogs chen gyi chos skad), the yogis who meditate according to those texts and instructions (rdzogs chen gyi rnal 'byor pa), a famous monastery where the Great Perfection was practiced by monks and yogis (rdzogs chen dgon sde), and the philosophical system (siddhānta, grub mtha') or vision (darśana, lta ba) of the Great Perfection.

Maha Ati
Maha Ati is a term coined by Chögyam Trungpa, a master of the Kagyu and Nyingma lineages of Tibetan Vajrayana Buddhism. He generally preferred to introduce Sanskrit rather than Tibetan terms to his students, and felt "Maha Ati" was the closest equivalent for "Dzogpa Chenpo," although he acknowledged it was an unorthodox choice. The coinage does not follow the sandhi rules which would be rendered as mahāti. This serves as an indication of its pedigree as a calque.

The Dzogchen teachings are the highest of the nine yana, (Tibetan theg pa, vehicle) of the Nyingma (Wylie: rnying ma) school of Tibetan Buddhism and the Tibetan Bön (Wylie: bon) tradition. Many lamas, particularly of the Nyingma and Kagyu schools, regard them as the most profound teachings altogether.

The instructions that point to the Dzogchen state are sometimes described as a set of "inner" or "heart" (Wylie: snying thig) teachings. Tibetan Buddhist ascetics consider that the state pointed to by these teachings is very difficult to describe, and can only be discovered through the esoteric transmission and pointing-out instruction by an authentic Vajra Master.

Although Dzogchen cannot be separated from the Buddhist or Bön tradition, very often teachers emphasize the non religious character of Dzogchen. However, the Buddhist or Bön traditional framework is never negated. Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche says that, as our primordial nature, Dzogchen has existed since the beginning of time and is pointed to by various masters throughout the Universe.

According to one Nyingma tradition, the first master of the Buddhist Dzogchen lineage in our world was Garab Dorje (Wylie: dga' rab rdo rje, Sanskrit *prahevajra) from Uddiyana (Wylie:. o rgyan).

Indian originators
According to Garab Dorje, Dzogchen is said to have been passed down as listed following. Often, practitioners are said to have lived for hundreds of years, and there are inconsistencies in the lifespan dates given, making it impossible to construct a sensible timeline.

Prahevajra (Tib. Garab Dorje, Wylie: dga' rab rdo rje) 184 BCE to 57 CE
Mañjuśrīmitra (Tib. Jampal Shenyen, Wylie: 'jam dpal bshes gnyen) 2nd century BCE (elder contemporary of Prahevajra)
Śrī Siṃha (Tib. Palgyi Senge, Wylie: dpal gyi senge) 3rd century CE (500 years before Vimalamitra)
Padmasambhava (Tib. Pema Jungne or Guru Rinpoche) fl. mid-8th CE
Vimalamitra (Tib. Drime Shenyen, Wylie: dri med bshes gnyen) fl. late 8th CE
Vairotsana (Tib. Nampar Nangdze Lotsawa, Wylie: rnam par snang mdzad lo tsa ba ) fl. late 8th CE.

Tibet
Padmasambhava (Tib. Pema Jugne or Guru Rinpoche, Wylie: padma 'byung gnas, gu ru rin po che) is considered the source of the Buddhist Dzogchen teachings in Tibet (Tib. bod), which are the heart of the Nyingma (Wylie: rnying ma) tradition, with which they are primarily associated. Dzogchen has also been practiced in the Kagyu (Wylie: bka' brgyud) lineage, beginning with Milarepa (Wylie: mi la ras pa) and most notably by the Third Karmapa, Rangjung Dorje (Wylie:. rang byung rdo rje). The Fifth, Thirteenth, and Fourteenth (present) Dalai Lamas (Wylie: ta la'i bla ma) are also noted Dzogchen masters, although their adoption of the practice of Dzogchen has been a source of controversy among more conservative members of the Gelug (Wylie: dge lugs) tradition.

In the Bön religion, three separate Dzogchen traditions are attested and continue to be practiced: A-tri (Wylie: a khrid), Dzogchen (Wylie: rdzogs chen, here referring narrowly to the specific lineage within the Bön tradition), and Shang Shung Nyen Gyu (Wylie: zhang zhung snyan rgyud). All are traced back to the founder of Bön, Tonpa Shenrab Miwoche (Wylie: ston pa gshen rab mi bo che).

Concepts

The essence of the Dzogchen teaching is the direct transmission of knowledge from master to disciple. Garab Dorje epitomized the Dzogchen teaching in three principles, known as the Three Statements of Garab Dorje (Tsik Sum Né Dek):

Direct introduction to one's own nature (Tib. ngo rang thog tu sprod pa)
Not remaining in doubt concerning this unique state (Tib. thag gcig thog tu bcad pa)
Continuing to remain in this state (Tib. gdeng grol thog tu bca' pa)
In accordance with these three statements, Garab Dorje's direct disciple Manjushrimitra (Tib. 'jam dpal bshes gnyen) classified all the Dzogchen teachings transmitted by his master into three series:

Semde (Wylie: sems sde; Skt: cittavarga), the series of Mind, that focuses on the introduction to one's own primordial state;
Longde (Wylie: klong sde; Skt: abhyantaravarga), the series of Space, that focuses on developing the capacity to gain familiarity with the state and remove doubts; and
Menngagde (Wylie: man ngag sde, Skt: upadeshavarga), the series of secret Oral Instructions, focusing on the practices in which one engages after gaining confidence in knowledge of the state.

Tulku Urgyen explains what is meant by "gaining confidence in liberation": "The third analogy of the liberation of thoughts is described as being like a thief entering an empty house. This is called stability or perfection in training. A thief entering an empty house does not gain anything, and the house does not lose anything. All thought activity is naturally liberated without any harm or benefit whatsoever. This is the meaning of gaining confidence in liberation."

The Dzogchen teachings focus on three terms: View, Meditation, and Action. To see directly the absolute state of our mind is the View; the way of stabilizing that View and making it an unbroken experience is Meditation; and integrating that View into our daily life is what is meant by Action.

This open awareness of Dzogchen, or rigpa (also comparable to the Buddha nature), is said to lie at the heart of all things and indeed of all Dzogchen practice and is nothing less than "... primordial wisdom's recognition of itself as unbounded wholeness... the incorruptible mindnature."This reflexive awareness of Enlightenment is said to be inherent within all beings, but not to be attainable by thought.Chogyal Namkhai Norbu points out that Dzogchen "refers to the true primordial state of every individual and not to any transcendent reality."In discussing the Nyingma text, the Kunjed Gyalpo Tantra (kunjed gyalpo = 'the all-creating king', synoymous with Samantabhadra Buddha), Namkhai Norbu explains that Kunjed Gyalpo is in fact "beyond" the dualism inherent in the notion of an 'individual'. He writes:

The transmission of knowledge comes from the state of rigpa that has never been stained and has never been hindered. This is Adibuddha, or "primordial Buddha", Kunjed Gyalpo... The state of Kunjed Gyalpo is knowledge, and in knowledge there is not even the concept of "one and two", otherwise we have already entered into dualism. Also, the concept of "individual" presupposes dualistic vision. But Samantabhadra is beyond all this...

Klein and Wangyal comment on the ultimate "one taste" and dynamic stillness of the Dzogchen state:

... cause and effect, sentient beings and Buddhas, subjects and objects, path and goal are ultimately revealed to be of one taste: movement from one to the other is no movement at all, really, but a dynamic stillness.

There can be found within Dzogchen a sense of Reality as limitless wholeness, a multiplicity which is yet all of one "taste", which is a borderless wholeness. According to Lopon Tenzin Namdak, it is unconditioned and permanent, changeless, not originated from causes and conditions, blissful, and the base or support of numerous exalted qualities. "It is at once base, path, and fruit". "That reality, unbounded wholeness, is naturally complete." Also: "...the essence and base of self-arisen wisdom is the allbase, that primordial open awareness is the base, and that recognition of this base is not separate from the primordial wisdom itself. ...that open awareness is itself authentic and its authenticity is a function of it being aware of, or recognizing itself as, the base. ...The reflexively self-aware primordial wisdom is itself open awareness (rigpa), inalienably one with unbounded wholeness."

Opposing views
The views of the Dzogchen school are not endorsed by all Tibetan Buddhists. In fact, Bonpo Lopon Tenzin Namdak contrasts his own view that primordial wisdom does not arise from causes with that of Tsongkhapa, who states that without consciousness, there is no understanding. Some critics claim that the views of the Dzogchen school of philosophy conflict with those of Madhyamaka and to the views of other prominent Buddhist thinkers such as the logician Dharmakirti. However, Longchenpa and Mipham argue that the views of the Dzogchen school are in fact in accord with the view of Madhyamaka. Dzogchen meditative techniques are, however, consistent with Madhyamaka.


Three aspects of energy


Ananda Chakra
Sentient beings have their energy manifested in three aspects:

"dang" (Wylie: gDangs)
"rolpa" (Wylie: Rol-pa)
'"tsal" (Wylie: rTsal)
Energy of an individual on the dang level is essentially infinite and formless.

Many practices of thödgal and yangthig work on the basis of functioning of the rolpa aspect of individual's energy. It is also the original source of the sambhogakaya deities visualized in Buddhist tantric transformational practices and of manifestations of 100 peaceful and wrathful deities in bardo and Zhitro practices.

Tsal is the manifestation of the energy of the individual him or herself, as apparently an "external" world.[31] The mind of a sentient being is also tsal energy when it is "contaminated" by the karmic "winds" (Tibetan: rlung).

letter A gDangs Trekchö Kadag Dharmakaya
Thigle Rolpa Thögal Lhungrub Sambhogakaya
**** rTsal Yermed Thugs rje Nirmanakaya

External world versus continuum
According to Dzogchen teachings, energy of an individual is essentially totally formless and free from any duality. However, karmic traces, contained in the storehouse consciousness of the individual's mindstream (Sanskrit: citta santana; Tibetan: sems rgyud) give rise to two kinds of forms:

forms that the individual experiences as his or her body, voice and mind and
forms that the individual experiences as an external environment.
It is maintained that there is nothing external or separate from the individual. What appears as a world of apparently external phenomena, is the energy of the individual him/her self. Everything that manifests in the individual's field of experience is a continuum (Sanskrit: santana; Tibetan: rgyud). This is the Great Perfection that is discovered in the Dzogchen practice.

Causality and interdependent origination

In Dzogchen teachings the interdependent origination and any kind of causality is considered illusory: "(One says), 'All these (configurations of events and meanings) come about and disappear according to dependent origination.' But, like a burnt seed, since a nonexistent (result) does not come about from a nonexistent (cause), cause and effect do not exist.

Being obsessed with entities, one's experiencing itself [Wylie: sems, Sanskrit: citta], which discriminates each cause and effect, appears as if it were cause and condition.

This corresponds to the assertion in the Heart Sutra (Sanskrit: Prajñāpāramitā Hridaya Sūtra), that there is no karma, no law of cause and effect. The assertion was made by bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara in a teaching for the great arhat Shariputra, given before multitude of beings, on request of Buddha Shakyamuni. After the teaching Buddha Shakyamuni greatly praised the wisdom of Avalokiteshvara's words and the beings present rejoiced.

Guardians
All teachings have energies that have special relationships with them. These energies are guardians of the teachings. The energies are iconographically depicted as they were perceived by yogis who had contact with them. The dharmapalas most associated with Dzogchen are Ekajati (Wylie: e ka dza ti), Dorje Legpa (Wylie: rdo rje legs pa) and Za Rahula (Wylie: gza' ra hu la) in the Nyingma and Sidpa Gyalmo in the Bön tradition. The iconographic forms were shaped by perceptions and also by the culture of those who saw the original manifestation and by the development of the tradition. However the guardians are not merely symbols as the pictures show actual beings.

Well-being and health
Dzogchen teachings maintain that the quality of people's lives is best when the internal classical elements are balanced.The body is healthy when the elements are balanced. They see the best way to balance the elements as abiding in the natural state.

Practice

Up to and including tregchöd (see below), Dzogchen meditative practices are parallel to and often identical with those of essence Mahamudra.

Preliminaries

Although many lamas require their students to complete the conventional tantric ngondro before starting Dzogchen practice, there is also a series of preliminary practices unique to Dzogchen. These include the Korday Rushan exercises (Tibetan: འཁོར་འདས་རུ་ཤན, Wylie: 'khor 'das ru shan) "differentiating saṃsāra and nirvāṇa," which are described in such texts as the Yeshe Lama (Tib. ཡེ་ཤེས་བླ་མ་, Wyl. ye shes bla ma). Rushan involves "going to a solitary spot and acting out whatever comes to your mind." The Dzogchen preliminaries also include a series of exercises known as Semdzin (sems dzin). Semdzin literally means "to hold the mind" or "to fix mind."Semdzins are found in all three series of Dzogchen (Semde, Longde and Mennagde), but the twenty-one semdzins found in the latter are common; Longchenpa divides them into three series of seven. According to Longchenpa as reported by Reynolds, "the first group enables the practitioner to find him- or herself in a calm state, and thus the exercises are similar to the practice of Shamatha . . the exercises in the second group enable the practitioner to discover the relationship between body and mind. And those in the third group enable one to discover the nature of one's own condition." Exercises in the first category include "fixating on a white Tibetan letter A on the tip of one's nose. Linking the letter with one's breathing, it goes out into space with each exhalation and returns to the tip of the nose with each inhalation. This fixation inhibits the arising of extraneous thoughts . . . however, the second exercise in the same category involves the sounding of the syllable PHAT! which instantly shatters one's thoughts and attachments. Symbolically, the two parts of the syllable indicate the two aspects of enlightenment, that is, PHA signifies Means (thabs) and TA signifies Wisdom (shes rab)."

Tregchöd and thödgal
After the indispensable preliminary of rushan, one remains in the knowledge of tregchöd and practices thödgal (also sometimes spelled thogal). These are the main instructions presented in the Menngagde series (Oral Instruction Series) of the Dzogchen teachings.

In both the Bön and Buddhist Dzogchen traditions, sky gazing is considered to be an important part of tregchöd.

Thödgal represents more a fruition than a practice itself. There are methods prepared in the event of a psychotic break to bring the practitioner back to sanity.

In contrast to other kinds of tantric practices, there is no intentional visualization; rather, imagery appears spontaneously using secondary conditions such as darkness or light. Eventually a practitioner has experiences which are viewed as knowing the subtle energies of one's being. These have the qualities of earth, water, fire, air and space (see Classical element). Throughout the retreat, a practitioner is believed to be approaching an experience which is entirely unconditioned.

Thödgal relies on esoteric anatomy including the avadhuti (also known as the center channel or sushumna in Hindu parlance) and heart chakra. Along with the fact that Dzogchen is based on a class of literature called the tantras, this indicates why Dzogchen is considered a tantric system as opposed to sutra systems such as Zen. This is not to say that Dzogchen is a part of general Vajrayana. Vajrayana is a path of transformation. Dzogchen, an independent vehicle in its own right, is a path of self-liberation.

Rigpa and rainbow body


Tibetan letter "A" inside a thigle. The A represents kadag while the thigle represents lhun grub.
Rigpa has three wisdoms, two of which are kadag and lhun grub. Kadag (primordial purity) is the Dzogchen view of emptiness. Lhun grub (natural formation) is the Dzogchen view of dependent origination. Throughout Mahayana, emptiness and dependent origination are two sides of the same coin. Kadag deals with tregchöd. The lhun grub aspect has to do with esoteric practices, such as (but not limited to) Thödgal, that self-liberate the dependently originated human body into the Sambhogakāya (rainbow body phenomenon). The symbol of Dzogchen is a Tibetan A wrapped in a thigle. The A represents kadag while the thigle represents lhun grub. The third wisdom, thugs rje (compassion), is the inseparability of the previous two wisdoms.

In Dzogchen, a fundamental point of practice is to distinguish rigpa from sems (mind). The distinguishing of rigpa and sems from each other is emphasized by Jigme Lingpa and goes back to the seventeen tantras.[citation needed]

The ultimate fruition of the thodgal practices is a body of pure light, called a rainbow body (Wylie 'ja' lus, pronounced Jalü.) If the four visions of thogal are not completed before death, then at death, from the point of view of an external observer, the following happens: the corpse does not start to decompose, but starts to shrink until it disappears. Usually fingernails, toenails and hair are left behind (see e.g. Togden Urgyen Tendzin, Ayu Khandro, Changchub Dorje.) The attainment of the rainbow body is typically accompanied by the appearance of lights and rainbows.

Some exceptional practitioners such as Padmasambhava and Vimalamitra are held to have realized a higher type of rainbow body without dying. Having completed the four visions before death, the individual focuses on the lights that surround the fingers. His or her physical body self-liberates into a nonmaterial body of light (a Sambhogakāya) with the ability to exist and abide wherever and whenever as pointed by one's compassion.

Dzogchenpa samaya
Capriles (2003: p. 180) openly quotes Chögyal Namkhai Norbu in the subtle but very important distinction of the activity of meditation from the effortless abiding of Dzogchen contemplation:

Chögyal Namkhai Norbu relates that once someone asked the famous Dzogchen Master, Yungtön Dorje Pel, what his practice consisted of, and he replied with the negative “mepa” or “there isn’t.” Then his startled questioner asked again, “Then you don’t meditate?,” to which the Master replied, “And when am I ever distracted?” This is the essence of samaya in Dzogchen teaching: not to meditate or to practice something with the mind and yet never to be distracted, for one remains uninterruptedly in the self-perfection of the single state of rigpa or Truth.

In this denotation, dzogchen is a verb, and denotes the perfect process in the grammatical sense or alternately an infinitive verb, wherein the great continuum of 'one taste' (Wylie: ro gcig) or as Capriles renders it "single state" is the effortless 'contemplating' or abiding in the view of non-distraction from rigpa.

Apperception

'Apperception' (Sanskrit: svasaṃvedana/svasaṃvitti; Wylie: rang rig) is understood variously in different yana, buddhist schools, and practice lineages. These cosmetic differences are resolved in the practice of 'meditative trance' (Wylie: 'jog pa). For it is in the direct experience and associated literatures of the deep contemplative traditions of Himalayan Buddhism (Tibetan Buddhism, Nepalese Buddhism, Bhutanese Buddhism, etc.) and Bon, particularly Dzogchen and Mahamudra, that apperception is key, e.g. dark retreat (Tibetan: mun mtshams).

In the language of Zhangzhung, 'rang rig' (Wylie) is 'nges de shin'where 'shin' equates to 'shes pa'. The Zhangzhung lexical item 'shin' is found in many compounds (Martin, 2004: p. 158) where it means: 'to know' and 'knowledge' to both nominal and verbal/process oriented lexical items.

Pettit (1999: p. 129) holds that 'apperception' (Wylie: rang rig) is key to Mipham's (1846–1912) system of epistemology and hermeneutics discussed in the DRG and in Mipham's Commentary to the Ninth Chapter of the Bodhisattvacaryāvatāra.

Graham Coleman and Thupten Jinpa (2005: p. 480) contrast the 'svasaṃvedana' of Dignāga and Dharmakīrti with that of Dzogchen:

According to Indian Buddhist epistemology, and particularly in the writings of the great logicians Dignāga and Dharmakīrti, the term svasaṃvedana refers to the apperceptive or reflexive faculty of consciousness, for which reason it is sometimes rendered as 'reflexive awareness' or 'apperceptive awareness'. However, in the view of the Great Perfection (rdzog-pa chen-po) and in the context of the present work [The Tibetan Book of the Dead], the same term refers to the fundamental innate mind in its natural state of spontaneity and purity, beyond the alternating states of motion and rest and the subject-object dichotomy. It is therefore rendered here as 'intrinsic awareness'. As such, intrinsic awareness gives the meditator access to pristine cognition or the buddha-mind itself, and it stands in direct contrast to fundamental ignorance (avidyā), which is the primary cause of rebirth in cyclic existence (saṃsāra). The direct introduction to intrinsic awareness is a distinctive teaching within the Nyingma school.... This practice is a central component of the Esoteric Instruction Class (upadeśa) of Atiyoga, where it is known as Cutting through Resistance (khregs-chod).

Texts

Dzogchen instructions are found in some Mahayoga texts, as it may simply have been the associated completion stage practice. However, the majority of the Dzogchen corpus comprises the "18" Semde tantra texts, the Longde tantras, and the Menngagde termas.

Samten Migdrön (Tib. bsam gtan mig sgron) is a Tibetan text of historical importance for the historical relationship of Dzogchen and Zen as well identifying the view of its author, Nubchen Sangye Yeshe.

Seventeen Tantras of Dzogchen Upadesha-varga.

These Seventeen Tantra amongst other Dzogchen texts are included in the various divergences and holdings of the numerous extant Nyingma Gyubum editions.

Reality vs dreams

See also: Lucid dreaming
Mipham Rinpoche has said:

The real sky is (knowing) that samsara and nirvana are merely an illusory display.

According to contemporary teacher Chögyal Namkhai Norbu, in Dzogchen the perceived reality is considered to be unreal. All appearances perceived during the whole life of an individual through all senses, including sounds, smells, tastes and tactile sensations in their totality are like a big dream. It is claimed that on careful examination the dream of life and regular nightly dreams are not very different, and that in their essential nature there is no difference between them.

The non-essential difference between our dreaming state and our ordinary waking experience is that the latter is more concrete and linked with our attachment; the dreaming is slightly detached.

Also according to this teaching, there is a correspondence between the states of sleep and dream and our experiences when we die. After experiences in an intermediate state (bardo) an individual comes out of it, a new karmic illusion is created and another existence begins. This is how transmigration happens.

One aim of dream practice is to realize during a dream that one is dreaming. One can then dream with lucidity and do all sorts of things, such as go to different places, talk to people, fly and so forth. It is also possible to do different yogic practices while dreaming (usually such yogic practices one does in waking state). In this way the yogi can have a very strong experience and with this comes understanding of the dream-like nature of daily life. This is very relevant to diminishing attachments, because they are based on strong beliefs that life's perceptions and objects are real and, as a consequence, important. If one really understands what Buddha Shakyamuni meant when he said that everything is unreal or of the nature of shunyata, then one can diminish attachments and tensions.

The teacher gives advice, that the realization that the life is only a big dream can help us finally liberate ourselves from the chains of emotions, attachments, and ego and then we have the possibility of ultimately becoming enlightened.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dzogchen


**************************

Okar Research is an informal online review of published materials exploring the history, myths, legends, languages, geography, terms, practices, teachers and teachings of the ancient Central Asian 'Kingdom of Shambhala'.

**************************

Click Here to view the Okar Research Index

**************************

Okar Research was begun in 1979 in order to annotate and deepen my understanding of the Shambhala Terma Texts received by Chogyam Trungpa:
Golden Sun of the Great East....Received as terma in October, 1976.
Letter of the Black Ashe....Received as terma in January, 1978.
Letter of the Golden Key that Fulfills Desire....Received as terma in October, 1978.
Scorpion Seal of the Golden Sun....Received in 1980...A long and a short version exist.

John Hopkins....Northern New Mexico

Email....okarresearch@gmail.com

November 2018

**************************

Garab Dorje: Practice Of The White A

**************************


"Anniversary of Garab Dorje

First of all, we are sitting comfortably. We do the purification
breathings, which you know already. Otherwise you can learn
how we do it from older practitioners, and also you can learn the
Tun practice so that you already know it.

Then we pronounce A and at that moment we do a visualization
of the white A in a circle of five colors called a thigle.
It represents our primordial potentiality and we visualize it at
the center of our bodies. Then we imagine lights radiating one
by one from this white A and thigle, first blue, then green, then
white, then red, and then yellow, representing the five elements.

Then we combine our visualization with the mantra OM EHO
SHUDDHE SHUDDHE, and so on, which you can read and
learn from the Tun Book. So there is a visualization that you can
learn from the book, and you can also learn from older practioners how you do this purification. First you learn and do this
purification. When you finish the purification, sound A again and
do a visualization of the presence of the white A in the thigle at
the center of your body. Lights radiate from this A and with these
infinite lights we communicate to all enlightened beings, particularly
teachers who are related to the Dzogchen transmission.

Above all, in this moment we are working with the transmission,
so with that light we communicate to the teacher.

The teacher manifests like Guru Garab Dorje. His aspect
is very young, he is white and reddish color, transparent like
a crystal, and his right hand is pointing at you, which means
direct transmission. His left hand is on the left knee in a relaxed
position. This means that at the same time he is in the state of
contemplation. You do this visualization in front of you and consider
that the manifestation has the form of Garab Dorje, but in
the real sense it is the teacher. The teacher is manifesting and
now he gives you the transmission. So your visualization is very
much alive. With this presence, first of all you start with Refuge
and Bodhicitta. In the Tun, the formula is very brief: NAMO
GURU BHYA, NAMO DEVA BHYA, NAMO DH KKINI
BHYA. We use these words and learn what is the real sense of
Refuge and Bodhicitta.

First of all you do this and then you do the invocation of Guru
Garab Dorje; the verses start with NAMO N̑ OVO QOSGUI GYILKÒR
NAS GADĂG LÁMA GÁRAB JÉ... You should learn
this invocation because when we do this practice with the transmission
we will sing this melody, so before you receive it you
should learn it. There are many older practitioners who know it
already, so we do this invocation precisely while we give transmission
and you receive transmission. You can learn the melody
and way of singing and so on.

After this invocation we pronounce A again, and at that moment
you imagine that from a white A in a thigle at the heart of the teacher Garab Dorje infinite lights radiate to all the universe;
the enlightened beings and particularly the rigdzins, realized beings
of the Dzogchen teaching in all the universe, receive this
communication. After that we pronounce A again, and from the
body, speech, mind of all these realized beings, their wisdoms
and empowerments come as infinite lights of different colors,
and these lights dissolve in a center of the white A and thigle of
Guru Garab Dorje. Guru Garab Dorje receives all these lights,
and this means that Guru Garab Dorje is the unified wisdom of
all the universal realized beings. After that, we sound A again,
and at that moment we imagine Guru Garab Dorje with a white
A and thigle dissolves in light and that light comes down and
dissolves at our forehead.

At our forehead there is a kind of
a triangle, at the center of which is a
three-colored circle called a gakhyil
turning from the border to the center
counterclockwise. The gakhyil represents
the potentiality of body, speech,
and mind. The gakhyil turns at our
forehead. You can visualize this triangle
like the central channel, bluish
outside and reddish inside, representing
light inside. This triangle is the
base of a pyramid with sides pointing
inside, meeting at the head chakra and
the central channel.

Guru Garab Dorje and our primordial state unified manifest
at the center of this turning gakhyil in the form of a tiny, luminous
white A, representing our real potentiality. Maintaining this
clarity we relax and remain in that state.
After a while we do trondu. Trondu means that when we
sound A, from the white A at the forehead representing the state
of unification with the Guru and oneself, infinite lights radiate
in all directions and call or activate all enlightened beings and
their wisdoms. Then we sound A again and receive infinite lights
from all the enlightened beings. We dissolve these lights at our
forehead, in the white A and thigle and gakhyil, and spread them
in our body through all the channels and chakras. Our chakras or
channels wake up and at the same time we purify all obstacles,
negativities, and negative karmas. All of our karmic body at the
material level dissolves into its real nature of five-colored lights,
and we are being in that state. We sound another A and from that
moment we are no longer working with visualization, thinking,
or judging, but are only being in that presence. In particular, we
notice who is doing this visualization, who is being in this white
A at the center of the gakhyil. We are not looking at something
in a dualistic way; we are being in that state, and that is instant
presence and our real condition.

Now we relax and remain in that state.

When you relax in the clarity of that presence, at that moment,
the teacher suddenly shouts a very strong PHAT, and when
teacher shouts PHAT you have a kind of small shock, but at that
moment you have no concepts. It cuts through all your thoughts
and confusions. At that moment you are in instant presence. You
notice that instant presence: it is the state of your teacher and the
state of Guru Garab Dorje. It is also the real state of your primordial
state – there is no difference.

So we relax in that state and integrate all aspects of body,
speech and mind and all of our conceptions of subject and object.
Everything integrates in the sound of the Song of the Vajra;
we sing the Song of the Vajra and everything integrates into
that state and we continue. This is what we do when we receive
the transmission: we receive the transmission, we receive the
knowledge of instant presence, and we notice at the end who is
being in that state of instant presence. At the end when we have
finished, we dedicate merits and empower this dedication with
the mantra OM DHARE DHARE BHANDHARE SV H …
You can find this dedication in the Tun Book. This is how we do
the practice.

http://www.shangshunginstitute.net/webcast/files/guruyoga%20119-123.pdf

**************************

Okar Research is an informal online review of published materials exploring the history, myths, legends, languages, geography, terms, practices, teachers and teachings of the ancient Central Asian 'Kingdom of Shambhala'.

**************************

Click Here to view the Okar Research Index

**************************

Okar Research was begun in 1979 in order to annotate and deepen my understanding of the Shambhala Terma Texts received by Chogyam Trungpa:
Golden Sun of the Great East....Received as terma in October, 1976.
Letter of the Black Ashe....Received as terma in January, 1978.
Letter of the Golden Key that Fulfills Desire....Received as terma in October, 1978.
Scorpion Seal of the Golden Sun....Received in 1980...A long and a short version exist.

John Hopkins....Northern New Mexico

Email....okarresearch@gmail.com

November 2018

**************************