The clear light of pure reality experience

Discuss your personal experience with the Dharma here. How has it enriched your life? What challenges does it present?

Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby conebeckham » Tue Mar 11, 2014 5:13 pm

Well, I don't think equating Clear Light with Sleep Paralysis is accurate.

If you're talking about a technique, praxis, we could say there are similarities. But Clear Light itself is something more than praxis. Not something worth talking about too much on the internet, IMO, but....it's not "Light." That's the first thing to say--and it has been said earlier in the thread.
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby reddust » Tue Mar 11, 2014 5:47 pm

odysseus wrote:
A few months after I had taken psychedelics (I don't know if this caused it directly, I did´nt meditate) I was at a psychologists. We talked and touched upon the subject of my girlfriend who dumped me for another (arghh). I then remembered the first time we met and I got in a turbulent state of mind. Suddenly , my heart exploded with love and I got dizzy. Then I lost contact with the physical room and this warm, bright, brilliant clear/white light appeared in my mind and took over everything. It did´nt last long but it felt really good.


When one experiences clear-light that is the subtle mind, I am not talking about the kind of light we need to read a book by or fleeting feelings and emotions, mind events, I would think their view of the world would change along with reaction to views. There are glimpses in meditation, even in daily life through various experiences but this isn't lasting. In meditation one becomes familiar and at ease with this subtle mind and integrates this into daily life. Kind of like how one learns how to use a bow with target practice. You tighten up and your aim goes off, you are too slack you aim goes off....Am right?
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby ConradTree » Tue Mar 11, 2014 6:08 pm

conebeckham wrote:Well, I don't think equating Clear Light with Sleep Paralysis is accurate.

If you're talking about a technique, praxis, we could say there are similarities. But Clear Light itself is something more than praxis. Not something worth talking about too much on the internet, IMO, but....it's not "Light." That's the first thing to say--and it has been said earlier in the thread.



Malcolm:

"'od gsal, or luminosity, is experienced by everyone as they go to sleep"

"Luminosity arises when the vayus withdraw into the central channel when we fall asleep".


Via dream yoga, the goal is to be conscious during this process when we fall asleep. Various remedies are proscribed for this tricky balancing act.
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby ReasonAndRhyme » Tue Mar 11, 2014 8:21 pm

Hmmm... well.... but that doesn't mean that it's the same, does it? Besides, not everybody suffers from sleep paralysis...
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby odysseus » Wed Mar 12, 2014 12:30 am

AlexanderS wrote:However, I think the OP should take his blissfull experience as a inspiration and dedicate himself even further to the path.


Yes, that´s what I did. I was´nt very "spiritual" before this episode. It made me investigate further.

I just read "Sleeping, dreaming and dying" with the Dalai Lama and he talks about "clear light of sleep" which is a subtle light (I´ve seen this a few times when falling asleep). He talks about "clear light of death" which is much more overwhelming (like I had it). They say sure, these things can be brought about suddenly. I believe I had a "mental and emotional blockage" due to my girlfriend leaving me in a traumatic way. I had a "spontaneous release" from this trauma and my body released a lot of emotions and power at the same time, thereby causing this great light. I´m not saying this is an "enlightenment
realization", but it was a step for me on the way to better understanding of reality.

To clarify, it was not a vision at all (as I think of visions) - it was an all-encompassing light that surrounded me completely - inside and outside my mind.

Why should I not talk about it on the Internet? Perhaps, if there is a good explanation it could be useful to others. I´m not exactly boasting, but it was a very liberating thing for me. I´m thankful anyway even if it´s a trifling "achievement".



I´ll se my lama in 3 weeks now.

Thanks all. :tantrum:
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby TrimePema » Wed Mar 12, 2014 4:59 am

Hi odysseus - hope your journey is going well.

Did you experience any fear or great comfort before this realm opened to you?
Generally, what you are trying to explain is in fact not clear light, as that is purely an aspect of the mind. Also in sleep practice we are not really talking about experiencing clear light as an environment but actually talking about experiencing the operation of clear light mind as we transition to the sleep bardo.

Clear light is only a mode of consciousness, literally a mode of knowing reality. Like for instance when we operate from the confused or ignorant consciousness, the self is the watcher; in more subtle states, the watcher is being watched by a nonexistent watcher ;)

If you experienced a different reality - an entirely different reality - like if the environment and your body etc dissolved and became luminous light, than that is a different bardo than the ordinary bardo of this life.

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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby odysseus » Wed Mar 12, 2014 5:39 am

TrimePema wrote:Hi odysseus - hope your journey is going well.


Thanks, I have made some heavy obstacle for myself lately but the past few years have been somewhat fruitful.

TrimePema wrote:Did you experience any fear or great comfort before this realm opened to you?
Generally, what you are trying to explain is in fact not clear light, as that is purely an aspect of the mind. Also in sleep practice we are not really talking about experiencing clear light as an environment but actually talking about experiencing the operation of clear light mind as we transition to the sleep bardo.

Clear light is only a mode of consciousness, literally a mode of knowing reality. Like for instance when we operate from the confused or ignorant consciousness, the self is the watcher; in more subtle states, the watcher is being watched by a nonexistent watcher ;)

If you experienced a different reality - an entirely different reality - like if the environment and your body etc dissolved and became luminous light, than that is a different bardo than the ordinary bardo of this life.


I had some fear when the light appeared, I was not ready and it was a surprise. It wasn´t a different reality. I lost contact with the room´s physicality and the light overtook everything. My body did not dissolve but I wash´t aware of it or sensed it. If it´s a bardo, well I got several visions after this episode that lasted for a long time - you could say I had illusions like described in the bardos.

TrimePema wrote:Much love!


Love back at ya! :popcorn:
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby garudha » Wed Mar 12, 2014 1:31 pm

odysseus wrote:I then remembered the first time we met and I got in a turbulent state of mind. Suddenly , my heart exploded with love and I got dizzy.


How do you now feel about not being in that relationship ?

For example; If you thought about it all, and remembered yourselves together and her then dumping you, could you look back with a smile on your face ?

The reason I ask, is that it's possible you haven't fully come to terms with it ?

You say that you experienced a unblocking, but could the light really have been a self-protection mechanism to avoid the pain ? --anyway I don't want to put words into your mouth but would suggest a self-help book if you still feel attached to the relationship.

Another thing is; if your ex hasn't at least given you the chance to grieve the relationship together and she hasn't counselled you towards acceptance; then you might feel unjustly treated. You might need to forgive her, yet. It's better if you can actively forgive as it cuts the root instead of hoping for decay over time. It might be painful to get to the root but it's worth it. Did your therapist already take you there? ..and did you "liberate" the root? --this is most important.

Find ALL your roots and liberate them!
Best wishes for your liberation.
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby garudha » Wed Mar 12, 2014 2:51 pm

Maybe you can check out "Crown Chakra" and research the energetic body. I don't know the full range of experiences. Mine was like having a my skull cracked open. Distinctive. Watch out for any symptoms of Kundalini energy,.. you may already experienced symptoms without realising. They feel very physical rather than "ghostly" or "spiritual".
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby thigle » Wed Mar 12, 2014 3:47 pm

odysseus wrote:you could say I had illusions like described in the bardos.


Pure vision like lights, rays and sounds can appear in the modus of ignorance like in the modus of knowledge. In the modus of knowledge, every vision appear as the primordial inseparable expression of knowledge. But for the senses, normal vision like your environment doesn't appear in that way, even if knowledge is immediate obvious. It's like in this metaphor: If you put a straw in a glas of water, he appears broken, even if you know, that the straw isn't broken. In contrast to your normal vision, pure vision like lights, rays and sounds appear the senses "out of the water", therefore exactly as the expression of knowledge if knowledge is the "operating-modus". If ignorance is the "operating-modus", you can have pure light vision to, but this pure vision appear as the expression of grasping, therefore out of an fabricated trance. Such a pure vision can be very "intense", "lovely" and absolutely "real". But that's only an illusionary high-end eternalistic expression of conceptual reification- ergo grasping. Because it's "so beautiful", some people want to have more of these illusionary expression of conceptual reification. Some other people identify themselves with these vision and called it: "True self". Therefore, it carries the seed of suffering in itself. Conclusion: Pure vision can appear out of consciousness, which is always an artificial "state" including a reified subject/object concept, or pure vision appear as exactly expression of knowledge. What's knowledge? As conebeckham said..

But Clear Light itself is something more than praxis. Not something worth talking about too much on the internet, IMO, but....it's not "Light."
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby garudha » Tue Mar 25, 2014 12:21 am

I thought this might be useful regarding "clear light" which is mentioned in the Q and A in this ebook.

Ebook: The Heart of Dhammakaya Meditation

Book No. 4 in this link: http://www.dhammacenter.org/content/view/143
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby Vajraprajnakhadga » Tue Mar 25, 2014 1:14 am

odysseus wrote:I´m meeting my lama next week and will ask him about my experience, but I´d like to prepare myself so I ask here first:

A few months after I had taken psychedelics (I don't know if this caused it directly, I did´nt meditate) I was at a psychologists. We talked and touched upon the subject of my girlfriend who dumped me for another (arghh). I then remembered the first time we met and I got in a turbulent state of mind. Suddenly , my heart exploded with love and I got dizzy. Then I lost contact with the physical room and this warm, bright, brilliant clear/white light appeared in my mind and took over everything. It did´nt last long but it felt really good. I have read Timothy Leary´s "Psychedelic Experience" and there I read about the clear light of pure reality for the first time. On the Internet, there is not much to be found on this. They say "clear light of pure reality", "clear light of death", etc. Is it emptiness (sunyata)? If this light is seen in living life, it´s not exactly the "clear light of death" or?

Could anyone share their view on this experience? Is there an authoritative text on the clear light in English except the Tibetan Book of the Dead?


I'm not going to get into the nature of your experience. I don't think anything useful can come from that. I will say however that clear light is not simply a sensation resembling light. Clear light is essentially the nature of mind before it is clouded by dualistic thought. I would suggest you just practice and not worry about conceptualizations surrounding clear light (which is itself beyond concept). If your teacher encourages your curiosity, ignore my advice, but I have seen too many people get fixated on the seemingly "blissed out" nature of ultimate reality, only to lose sight of the practicality of simply practicing and letting such things arise naturally (if they arise at all).

Also stay away from psychedelic drugs if you want to progress along the Buddhist path. Buddhism is not shamanism.
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby Asbestos Buddha » Sat Mar 29, 2014 11:33 pm

So, I'm driving down the road and my car is making this terrible sound so people look at 'me'.

Then, I think, "ahh my car is just trying to sing".
Now I'm really driving my blames!

Get high by getting low.
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby TrimePema » Mon Apr 07, 2014 6:27 pm

To be completely honest, I've heard multiple interpretations of the psychedelics and Buddhism subject... I know one teacher said, "look, psychedelics are hallucinatory, and hallucinations are illusion. this already is illusory, why add to it?" and also one who said "psychedelics...they are in and of themselves bardos, because all states that are not the three kayas are bardos... so maybe it is possible to use psychedelics as a reverse meditation technique to assimilate to bardos and become lucid in bardos, like dreams or like watching horror films. should you do this yourself? that is not for me to say." so, on that topic, it seems a little unclear but also like, if you have the vow not to ingest such things, then dont do it - very simply. Of course, and I think this is very valuable advice, it is important not to get blissed out, and to stay in the present, because otherwise we can believe we are resting in some meditative state but really we are just as stuck as ever.

Since there is no need to be cryptic here, we can very simply say that teachings on clear light are secret and nobody here is in the position to talk to you about it in great detail - so best to ask your lama. Also, take everyone's advice and realize that lights do not equal clear light, although there is talk of a brilliant, irritating light, in one of the bardos. The bardos are experienced on macro and micro levels and so it is possible to have a spontaneous experience of rebirth, so I've been told, by being birthed into the next moment. Sometimes this happens but usually only to people who have already been introduced to nature of mind and are doing those advanced practices.


How was your talk with your teacher?
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby odysseus » Sat Apr 12, 2014 9:39 am

TrimePema wrote:Since there is no need to be cryptic here, we can very simply say that teachings on clear light are secret and nobody here is in the position to talk to you about it in great detail - so best to ask your lama. Also, take everyone's advice and realize that lights do not equal clear light, although there is talk of a brilliant, irritating light, in one of the bardos. The bardos are experienced on macro and micro levels and so it is possible to have a spontaneous experience of rebirth, so I've been told, by being birthed into the next moment. Sometimes this happens but usually only to people who have already been introduced to nature of mind and are doing those advanced practices.


A passage from Bardo Thodol:

"The moment of ego-death, and the clear light of Pure Reality:

First of all there will appear to you, swifter than lightning, the luminous splendor of the colourless light of Emptiness, and that will surround you on all sides. Terrified, you will want to flee from the radiance, and you may well lose consciousness. Try to submerge yourself in that light, giving up all belief in a separate self, all attachment to your illusory ego. Recognise that the boundless Light of this true Reality is your own self, and you shall be saved!"

Well, esoteric teachings but they´re public now thanks to Evans-Wentz.
My experience was conventional wisdom, like realisation of ultimate truth (reality-insight), but not enlightenment. To be able to hold the clear light for a long time would be real enlightenment.

Now the mystique has been cleared-up..! :mrgreen:

TrimePema wrote:
How was your talk with your teacher?


We haven´t been able to meet yet, but thanks for caring. :namaste:
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby oushi » Sat Apr 12, 2014 9:49 am

odysseus wrote:[...]Then I lost contact with the physical room and this warm, bright, brilliant clear/white light appeared in my mind and took over everything.[...]

You want it back and you want it to say, don't you? 8-)
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby ConradTree » Sat Apr 12, 2014 10:50 pm

Clear light means entering sleep paralysis consciously.

Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche for example says that "luminosity yoga" is the "yoga of deep sleep".

Every book I have ever read says the same thing.

Malcolm:

"'od gsal, or luminosity, is experienced by everyone as they go to sleep"

"Luminosity arises when the vayus withdraw into the central channel when we fall asleep".
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby smcj » Sun Apr 13, 2014 4:25 am

ConradTree wrote:Clear light means entering sleep paralysis consciously.

Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche for example says that "luminosity yoga" is the "yoga of deep sleep".

Every book I have ever read says the same thing.

Malcolm:

"'od gsal, or luminosity, is experienced by everyone as they go to sleep"

"Luminosity arises when the vayus withdraw into the central channel when we fall asleep".


Hmmm. I'd have bet $100 that wasn't the case, and I never gamble unless I'm pretty certain I'm going to win. Oh well, live and learn I guess.
A human being has his limits. And thus, in every conceivable way, with every possible means, he tries to make the teaching enter into his own limits. ChNN
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby Lindama » Sun Apr 13, 2014 5:10 am

odysseus,
If it's not too late, disregard everthing in this thread... you touched something beyond yourself, let it teach you. It is most intimate.
:namaste:
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Re: The clear light of pure reality experience

Postby ReasonAndRhyme » Sun Apr 13, 2014 10:57 am

ConradTree wrote:Clear light means entering sleep paralysis consciously.

Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche for example says that "luminosity yoga" is the "yoga of deep sleep".

Every book I have ever read says the same thing.

Malcolm:

"'od gsal, or luminosity, is experienced by everyone as they go to sleep"

"Luminosity arises when the vayus withdraw into the central channel when we fall asleep".


Hi Conrad,

I'm afraid I don't really understand which point you're trying to make here. Could you explain what you mean when you speak of "sleep paralysis"? The way I know the term it refers to a fairly rare sleep disorder which is experienced by patients who also suffer from other illnesses as narcolepsy or anxiety disorder. See the wikipedia article here:

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

As to Malcolm's quote I have some reservations concerning the use of the word "experience" here, for as I understand the term "experience" it implies that the subject who experiences something does so consciously. As to the Clear Light that arises when we fall asleep most people do not experience it consciously as they lose their consciousness before the Clear Light arises. Experiencing the Clear Light consciously when falling asleep is an experience that normally only trained meditators have. Besides according to the teachings I heard it can also experienced at any other time by advanced meditators, the reason why falling asleep, having sex, sneezing etc. are normally highlighted is that on these occasions it is easiest for meditators to experience the Clear Light. But that doesn't mean that the Clear Light occurs only in these situations or can be equated with them.
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