Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

User avatar
Grigoris
Former staff member
Posts: 12933
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Grigoris » Mon Jan 09, 2017 5:14 pm

And then there is Ganges Mahamudra...
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 21698
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jan 09, 2017 5:22 pm

Grigoris wrote:And then there is Ganges Mahamudra...


This is not different than other mahāmudra instructions.
Atikosha
Tibetan Medicine Blog
Sudarsana Mandala, Tibetan Medicine and Herbs
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


So called “sentient beings” are merely delusions self-appearing from the dhātu of luminosity.

-- Ju Mipham

User avatar
Grigoris
Former staff member
Posts: 12933
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Grigoris » Mon Jan 09, 2017 5:23 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Grigoris wrote:And then there is Ganges Mahamudra...


This is not different than other mahāmudra instructions.
The praxis is different.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
Posts: 6188
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Astus » Mon Jan 09, 2017 5:26 pm

Malcolm wrote:The principle of both mahāmudra and the great perfection is to distinguish the mind from the nature of the mind. That is accomplished on the basis of the intimate instructions of a qualified guru. But in both cases there is no gradual path.


"See nature, become buddha" could be called a shared idea of Zen and Mahamudra. But while you don't find much on the topic of gradual instructions in Zen, it seems to me that people like Dagpo Tashi Namgyal and Wangchuk Dorje worked hard on spelling out the details of the preliminary practices, the main practices of calming and insight, and the stages of the four yogas, just as modern teachers of the tradition, like Thrangu Rinpoche, follow in their footsteps. I'm not debating what you say about Mahamudra, but it seems to me that is a somewhat selective presentation. Furthermore, I consider those detailed instructions in the Mahamudra tradition of Gampopa an asset, and I'm not saying that it makes it anything inferior.
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"

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 21698
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jan 09, 2017 5:26 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
Grigoris wrote:And then there is Ganges Mahamudra...


This is not different than other mahāmudra instructions.
The praxis is different.


Oh, I see, you mean between the four so called yogas of mahāmudra. Yes, Ganges Mahāmudra is nominally related to completion stage practice.
Atikosha
Tibetan Medicine Blog
Sudarsana Mandala, Tibetan Medicine and Herbs
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


So called “sentient beings” are merely delusions self-appearing from the dhātu of luminosity.

-- Ju Mipham

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 21698
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jan 09, 2017 5:29 pm

Astus wrote:
Malcolm wrote:The principle of both mahāmudra and the great perfection is to distinguish the mind from the nature of the mind. That is accomplished on the basis of the intimate instructions of a qualified guru. But in both cases there is no gradual path.


"See nature, become buddha" could be called a shared idea of Zen and Mahamudra. But while you don't find much on the topic of gradual instructions in Zen, it seems to me that people like Dagpo Tashi Namgyal and Wangchuk Dorje worked hard on spelling out the details of the preliminary practices, the main practices of calming and insight, and the stages of the four yogas, just as modern teachers of the tradition, like Thrangu Rinpoche, follow in their footsteps. I'm not debating what you say about Mahamudra, but it seems to me that is a somewhat selective presentation. Furthermore, I consider those detailed instructions in the Mahamudra tradition of Gampopa an asset, and I'm not saying that it makes it anything inferior.


The four yogas in reality are not a means to achieve anything. They are a means to familiarize oneself with the nature of the mind one has already recognized.
Atikosha
Tibetan Medicine Blog
Sudarsana Mandala, Tibetan Medicine and Herbs
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


So called “sentient beings” are merely delusions self-appearing from the dhātu of luminosity.

-- Ju Mipham

User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
Posts: 6188
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Astus » Mon Jan 09, 2017 5:35 pm

Malcolm wrote:The four yogas in reality are not a means to achieve anything. They are a means to familiarize oneself with the nature of the mind one has already recognized.


I think I did not describe the yogas as methods either.
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"

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 21698
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jan 09, 2017 5:43 pm

Astus wrote:
Malcolm wrote:The four yogas in reality are not a means to achieve anything. They are a means to familiarize oneself with the nature of the mind one has already recognized.


I think I did not describe the yogas as methods either.


This is what you said:

Zen practice begins and ends at non-abiding. Mahamudra provides a gradual path to non-abiding.


With respect to Mahāmudra, it is simply wrong.
Atikosha
Tibetan Medicine Blog
Sudarsana Mandala, Tibetan Medicine and Herbs
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


So called “sentient beings” are merely delusions self-appearing from the dhātu of luminosity.

-- Ju Mipham

User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
Posts: 6188
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Astus » Mon Jan 09, 2017 7:05 pm

Malcolm wrote:With respect to Mahāmudra, it is simply wrong.


If that is wrong, then what do you consider all the methods transmitted under the label of Mahamudra, particularly the techniques of calming and insight?
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"

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 21698
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jan 09, 2017 7:10 pm

Astus wrote:
Malcolm wrote:With respect to Mahāmudra, it is simply wrong.


If that is wrong, then what do you consider all the methods transmitted under the label of Mahamudra, particularly the techniques of calming and insight?


Common śamatha and vipaśayāna are engaged in by those who have no experience of the nature of the mind. But in mahāmudra, śamatha and vipaśayāna unified from the beginning since it is simply a means of stabilizing one's knowledge of the nature of the mind pointed out by the guru, as in Dzogchen sems sde or trekchö, or the Lamdre's "inseparability of samsara and nirvana" and so on.
Atikosha
Tibetan Medicine Blog
Sudarsana Mandala, Tibetan Medicine and Herbs
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


So called “sentient beings” are merely delusions self-appearing from the dhātu of luminosity.

-- Ju Mipham

User avatar
Matt J
Posts: 552
Joined: Tue Aug 03, 2010 2:29 am

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Matt J » Mon Jan 09, 2017 7:23 pm

Isn't stabilizing, clearing the ground, removing afflictions and obscurations etc. just another name for gradual? No one advocates a one and done approach for most practitioners.
The Great Way is not difficult
If only there is no picking or choosing
--- Xin Xin Ming

http://nondualism.org/

Justmeagain
Posts: 58
Joined: Thu Feb 25, 2016 10:12 pm

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Justmeagain » Mon Jan 09, 2017 7:41 pm

Alright then.... :focus:

So my OP was designed to establish whether there is (in your opinions) a discernable different between Mahamudra and Shikantaza? Apart from the obvious cultural accoutrements of course.

Just to reiterate, I can't see any parallel at all. But keep hearing that there is?!?

Thanks...

User avatar
conebeckham
Posts: 4127
Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2010 11:49 pm
Location: Bay Area, CA, USA

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby conebeckham » Mon Jan 09, 2017 7:53 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Astus wrote:
Malcolm wrote:With respect to Mahāmudra, it is simply wrong.


If that is wrong, then what do you consider all the methods transmitted under the label of Mahamudra, particularly the techniques of calming and insight?


Common śamatha and vipaśayāna are engaged in by those who have no experience of the nature of the mind. But in mahāmudra, śamatha and vipaśayāna unified from the beginning since it is simply a means of stabilizing one's knowledge of the nature of the mind pointed out by the guru, as in Dzogchen sems sde or trekchö, or the Lamdre's "inseparability of samsara and nirvana" and so on.


In several Kagyu traditions of Mahamudra, there are methods of gradual instruction in śamatha and vipaśayāna, using a variety of objects, but ultimately settling on investigation of the mind as object. During the gradual instructions regarding these investigations, nature of mind may be pointed out at various times. In my tradition, we call all of these methods "Mahamudra practice." I agree that, once Nature of Mind has been intuited, stabilizing one's knowledge is the practice, but I think it's fair to say that, at least in Kagyu Mahamudra traditions, we can see both gradual and non-gradual methods. One only need look at Dakpo Tashi Namgyal's Moonbeams or the well-known "Ocean of Certainty."

I don't think either of these approaches are the same as Zen Shikantaza, but I have no experience other than my limited research and reading on the subject of Shikantaza.
དམ་པའི་དོན་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ཆེ་བ་དང་།
རྟོག་གེའི་ཡུལ་མིན་བླ་མའི་བྱིན་རླབས་དང་།
སྐལ་ལྡན་ལས་འཕྲོ་ཅན་གྱིས་རྟོགས་པ་སྟེ།
དེ་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ལ་ནི་ལོ་རྟོག་སེལ།།


"Absolute Truth is not an object of analytical discourse or great discriminating wisdom,
It is realized through the blessing grace of the Guru and fortunate Karmic potential.
Like this, mistaken ideas of discriminating wisdom are clarified."

May any merit generated by on-line discussion
Be dedicated to the Ultimate Benefit of All Sentient Beings.

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 21698
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jan 09, 2017 8:04 pm

Matt J wrote:Isn't stabilizing, clearing the ground, removing afflictions and obscurations etc. just another name for gradual? No one advocates a one and done approach for most practitioners.


No. "Gradual" means accumulating merit and wisdom. This is not the principle in either Dzogchen or Mahāmudra.
Atikosha
Tibetan Medicine Blog
Sudarsana Mandala, Tibetan Medicine and Herbs
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


So called “sentient beings” are merely delusions self-appearing from the dhātu of luminosity.

-- Ju Mipham

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 21698
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Malcolm » Mon Jan 09, 2017 8:07 pm

conebeckham wrote:I agree that, once Nature of Mind has been intuited, stabilizing one's knowledge is the practice, but I think it's fair to say that, at least in Kagyu Mahamudra traditions, we can see both gradual and non-gradual methods. One only need look at Dakpo Tashi Namgyal's Moonbeams or the well-known "Ocean of Certainty."


Even in these books, a clear distinction is made between the practice of those who have recognized the nature of the mind based on "pointing out" or direct introduction, and those who have not.
Atikosha
Tibetan Medicine Blog
Sudarsana Mandala, Tibetan Medicine and Herbs
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


So called “sentient beings” are merely delusions self-appearing from the dhātu of luminosity.

-- Ju Mipham

User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
Posts: 6188
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Astus » Mon Jan 09, 2017 9:42 pm

Malcolm wrote:Common śamatha and vipaśayāna are engaged in by those who have no experience of the nature of the mind. But in mahāmudra, śamatha and vipaśayāna unified from the beginning since it is simply a means of stabilizing one's knowledge of the nature of the mind pointed out by the guru, as in Dzogchen sems sde or trekchö, or the Lamdre's "inseparability of samsara and nirvana" and so on.


The reason calming and insight is practised is to experience the nature of mind. The difference between sudden and gradual according to Tashi Namgyal is that those with supreme intellect do not need to practise calming but can directly gain insight following their familiarity with the teachings. Then, according to Thrangu rinpoche, the difference between common and special practice of calming and insight is that in Mahamudra one begins with insight into the nature of mind instead of insight into the nature of appearances. Finally, systematic instruction in calming and insight is more reliable and efficient according to him then pointing out instructions. So, at least in the Dagpo Kagyu tradition, the gradual practice of calming and insight is cultivated in order to realise the nature of mind. And that is quite logical, since once one is clear about self-liberation, there is no point in engaging in focusing on objects and analysing them.

From Mahamudra the Moonlight:

A Differentiation of Mahamudra Meditation:

"There are, in general, two paths. There is the rapid path, which is designed for a person with a superb intellect, and who is well-disposed to an instantaneous illumination. He has to master, at the outset, the doctrinal views of reality [through analytical insight and] through the clearing away of doubts and distortions. He then concentrates wholly on the vision of reality [established through wisdom]. Then there is the gradual path, which is for a person of an average or inferior intellect who is disposed toward a gradual illumination. He has to master first the meditation on inner tranquility, and then seek to gain analytical insight.
...
The meditational system of the Dakpo Kagyüpa order consists of two systems. The first system, which meets the needs of seekers inclined toward an instantaneous illumination, directs them, at the outset, to master the vision of reality by clearing doubts and distortions concerning the natural foundation of existence, and then settle the mind [in a nondual] state. The second system, which meets the demands of seekers of gradual illumination, directs them first to achieve tranquility of mind and then gradually strive toward insight. The former method would be more suitable for highly intelligent and sensitive persons. Nevertheless, I shall elucidate the latter at this stage because it is widely known in Tibet [the Land of Snow Mountains]."

(p 144, 145-146)

The Reason Why Meditation on Insight Is Necessary:

"the determination of nonselfhood [in one’s psychophysical aggregates] through discerning intellect, followed by meditation, will result in attaining permanent peace. No other means can completely eliminate misery and defilement."
(p 178)

From Thrangu rinpoche's An Introduction to Mahamudra Meditation on the difference between sutrayana and mantrayana practice of calming and insight:

"What are these extraordinary instructions of the Vajrayana? Essentially the concept of emptiness in the Vajrayana is the same as that taught by the Buddha in the sutras. The only difference is the method which is used in the Vajrayana. In the Vajrayana method of Mahamudra we do not to worry about external appearances because external appearances, such as mountains and buildings are not our problem, nor do they particularly help us. In fact, they are empty as is logically proven in the sutras, but we don’t meditate on them. Nor do we particularly meditate upon the emptiness or insubstantiality of the body.
In the Vajrayana we meditate upon that which is most important, which is the nature of our mind because it is the mind creates pleasure and pain, it is the mind that gives rise to experience, it is the mind that experiences everything. It is the mind that generates disturbing emotions, it is the mind that generates faith and devotion. So the mind is most important. Therefore in Vajrayana, in the practice of Mahamudra, we look at the nature of mind rather than attempting to look at the nature of appearances."

(p 31-32)

And from Thrangu rinpoche's commentary on The Ninth Karmapa's Ocean of Devinitive Meaning:

It is said that you can tell whether or not you have genuinely heard the teachings and understood their point by whether or not you are tame and peaceful in your conduct. And you can tell whether or not your meditation is effective by whether or not your kleshas are diminishing. Ideally, someone should finally have no kleshas whatsoever. But even on the way to that klesha-free state, your kleshas and thoughts should diminish. Therefore, I think that it is of far greater importance than the experience of dramatic instantaneous pointing out that people be taught mahamudra as a full system of instruction that they can implement on their own gradually through diligent application using either one of the three texts by the Ninth Gyalwang Karmapa—The Ocean of Definitive Meaning, Dispelling the Darkness of Ignorance, or Pointing Out the Dharmakaya— or one of the texts by Dakpo Tashi Namgyal—either Moonbeams of Mahamudra or The Clarification of the Natural State.
In short, I think it is of far more importance that people receive this kind of complete and systematic instruction so that they can gradually develop experience on their own, than that some kind of dramatic pointing-out procedure be done. Of course, it is possible to give dramatic pointing-out instruction, and when you do so, some people do recognize their mind’s nature. But, if I may say so, I question the stability and, therefore, ultimately the value of that. It certainly is a dramatic experience for those people who achieve it, but I see no evidence of their kleshas diminishing as a result. And furthermore, they then carry away with them the arrogance of the thought, “I have seen my mind’s nature.” I think it is of far greater importance actually to practice meditation slowly and surely and make all possible use of the resources which this book in particular gives you.
(p 127-128)
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"

User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
Posts: 6188
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Astus » Mon Jan 09, 2017 9:51 pm

Justmeagain wrote:So my OP was designed to establish whether there is (in your opinions) a discernable different between Mahamudra and Shikantaza? Apart from the obvious cultural accoutrements of course.
Just to reiterate, I can't see any parallel at all. But keep hearing that there is?!?


When taking Mahamudra to be the practice of non-meditation where appearances liberate themselves, that can be read as identical with the practice of Shikantaza where there is neither grasping nor rejection. However, as you can see, there is more to both traditions than that, even if eventually they both reach the same point.
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"

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 21698
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Malcolm » Tue Jan 10, 2017 2:38 am

Astus wrote:
Malcolm wrote:Common śamatha and vipaśayāna are engaged in by those who have no experience of the nature of the mind. But in mahāmudra, śamatha and vipaśayāna unified from the beginning since it is simply a means of stabilizing one's knowledge of the nature of the mind pointed out by the guru, as in Dzogchen sems sde or trekchö, or the Lamdre's "inseparability of samsara and nirvana" and so on.


The reason calming and insight is practised is to experience the nature of mind. The difference between sudden and gradual according to Tashi Namgyal is that those with supreme intellect do not need to practise calming but can directly gain insight following their familiarity with the teachings. Then, according to Thrangu rinpoche, the difference between common and special practice of calming and insight is that in Mahamudra one begins with insight into the nature of mind instead of insight into the nature of appearances. Finally, systematic instruction in calming and insight is more reliable and efficient according to him then pointing out instructions.


So you apparently agree with my statement, "...in mahāmudra, śamatha and vipaśayāna unified from the beginning since it is simply a means of stabilizing one's knowledge of the nature of the mind pointed out by the guru."

M
Atikosha
Tibetan Medicine Blog
Sudarsana Mandala, Tibetan Medicine and Herbs
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


So called “sentient beings” are merely delusions self-appearing from the dhātu of luminosity.

-- Ju Mipham

User avatar
Matt J
Posts: 552
Joined: Tue Aug 03, 2010 2:29 am

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Matt J » Tue Jan 10, 2017 4:02 am

You could take it in a number of ways, that is exactly the problem. We can have a group of people who all claim to practice Shikantaza, and say they are just sitting without grasping or rejection, but really, one person may be sinking into a dull, indeterminate state; one person may be cultivating mindfulness; another may be daydreaming and engaging in mental chatter. It is hard to say without practical and detailed guidance, which is largely missing in Soto Zen (at least as transmitted in the West). Some Soto masters have even turned to Mahamudra and Dzogchen to obtain guidance not offered by their tradition. I don't think drawing a superficial similarity necessarily means they are the same, on the other hand, if properly practiced, I don't think they are necessarily different.

Astus wrote:When taking Mahamudra to be the practice of non-meditation where appearances liberate themselves, that can be read as identical with the practice of Shikantaza where there is neither grasping nor rejection. However, as you can see, there is more to both traditions than that, even if eventually they both reach the same point.
The Great Way is not difficult
If only there is no picking or choosing
--- Xin Xin Ming

http://nondualism.org/

User avatar
Johnny Dangerous
Global Moderator
Posts: 6285
Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2012 10:58 pm
Location: Olympia WA
Contact:

Re: Mahamudra same as Shikantaza

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Tue Jan 10, 2017 4:09 am

Matt J wrote:You could take it in a number of ways, that is exactly the problem. We can have a group of people who all claim to practice Shikantaza, and say they are just sitting without grasping or rejection, but really, one person may be sinking into a dull, indeterminate state; one person may be cultivating mindfulness; another may be daydreaming and engaging in mental chatter. It is hard to say without practical and detailed guidance, which is largely missing in Soto Zen (at least as transmitted in the West). Some Soto masters have even turned to Mahamudra and Dzogchen to obtain guidance not offered by their tradition. I don't think drawing a superficial similarity necessarily means they are the same, on the other hand, if properly practiced, I don't think they are necessarily different.


:good:

Not to be impolitic but I did not understand what Zazen actually was supposed to be "doing" until being exposed to Mahamudra and Dzogchen instruction. There is a whole lot of exhortation to "just sit" out there and not enough guidance about how to do it, IME.

I'm not qualified to say how similar or different forms of meditation are, I just now that at some point reflecting on my Zen practice I had a lot of "oh, that's what that was for" type moments, whereas at the time it seems like there is not even a language in much of Western Zen for evaluating one's practice, maybe even it's that evaluation was shunned period.
May the eyes of living beings be gladdened by skies made splendid by clouds
that lightnings garland, while on earth below, the peacocks dance with joy as
showers of rain, falling gently, approach.

-The Door Of Happiness


Return to “Mahamudra”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 14 guests