Mahamudra in the Modern World

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Johnny Dangerous
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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:46 pm

Malcolm wrote:


But if incarnation is viewed as a sort of metaphor

Case closed.

Have you read his books? If not, then no, case not closed..unfortunate use of terms maybe, but you can't know his views from one little snippet of text.

Unless he's revised his views, he's definitely not what you are implying here at all, you think he believes in Dharmapalas..but takes a materialist view of rebirth?
"...if you think about how many hours, months and years of your life you've spent looking at things, being fascinated by things that have now passed away, then how wonderful to spend even five minutes looking into the nature of your own mind."

-James Low

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by Malcolm » Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:48 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Malcolm wrote:


But if incarnation is viewed as a sort of metaphor

Case closed.

Have you read his books? If not, then no, case not closed..unfortunate use of terms maybe, but you can't know his views from one little snippet of text.
Yes. I understand that in his books he presents a normative view. It is what people actually teach their students that is more salient, for me at any rate.

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by Malcolm » Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:49 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Malcolm wrote:


But if incarnation is viewed as a sort of metaphor

Case closed.

Have you read his books? If not, then no, case not closed..unfortunate use of terms maybe, but you can't know his views from one little snippet of text.

Unless he's revised his views, he's definitely not what you are implying here at all, you think he believes in Dharmapalas..but takes a materialist view of rebirth?
Ray is very influenced by shamanism. One can have an animistic view of the world and yet not accept rebirth.

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by dharmagoat » Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:53 pm

Malcolm wrote:If you only have one lifetime, and you want to dedicate yourself to the benefit of sentient beings, it is better done in service as a doctor, nurse, fire fighter, aid worker, etc. rather than pretending to oneself that one is a Dharma practitioner.
Not that they are not mutually exclusive.

As Dharma practitioners, we each do what we can. To think that someone is either a fully-fledged Dharma practitioner or not one at all does seem rather... dualistic.

It is something that we may need to grow into.
Last edited by dharmagoat on Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by Norwegian » Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:55 pm

"The bottom line is that as a practitioner of the Buddhadharma, you should practice for the sake of future lives" -- HH Gyalwa Karmapa, 11th April 2015, USA
"The Guru is the Buddha, the Guru is the Dharma,
The Guru is the Sangha too,
The Guru is Śrī Heruka.
The All-Creating King is the Guru."

-- The Secret Assembly Tantra

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by Malcolm » Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:55 pm

dharmagoat wrote:
Malcolm wrote:If you only have one lifetime, and you want to dedicate yourself to the benefit of sentient beings, it is better done in service as a doctor, nurse, fire fighter, aid worker, etc. rather than pretending to oneself that one is a Dharma practitioner.
Not that they are not mutually exclusive.

As Dharma practitioners, we each do what we can. To think that someone is either a fully-fledged Dharma practitioner or not one at all does seem rather... dualistic.
You cannot be a Dharma practitioner and yet reject rebirth. Do we really have to have this conversation yet again?

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:56 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Malcolm wrote:


But if incarnation is viewed as a sort of metaphor

Case closed.

Have you read his books? If not, then no, case not closed..unfortunate use of terms maybe, but you can't know his views from one little snippet of text.

Unless he's revised his views, he's definitely not what you are implying here at all, you think he believes in Dharmapalas..but takes a materialist view of rebirth?
Ray is very influenced by shamanism. One can have an animistic view of the world and yet not accept rebirth.
I personally doubt he denies rebirth, I don't know for sure but honestly I cannot even imagine such a sentiment from him, after reading a couple of books of his and listening to a number of talks.
But if incarnation is viewed as a sort of metaphor for the fact that we humans are on some kind of extremely long spiritual journey that happened before we were born, and it’s going to keep on going, then I think it’s helpful.”
IMO the statement doesn't deny rebirth at all anyway, but is a sort of very shorthand way of saying that Buddhist notions of rebirth are a bit more abstract than something like transmigration of souls, which is where many people go with it that haven't done the reading. Likely a way to talk to an audience that doesn't wanna/isn't gonna read about how the alaya vijnana works and similar..but that's just my guess. I can't say whether it was right or wrong, i'm just saying that the idea that he denies rebirth is very hard to square with his writings and talks, some of which mention repeatedly the notion that our lives are teleological...the end being Buddhahood. that might not be a declaration of faith of exact Buddhist doctrine on rebirth - but it sure is evidence that one believes in rebirth generally.
"...if you think about how many hours, months and years of your life you've spent looking at things, being fascinated by things that have now passed away, then how wonderful to spend even five minutes looking into the nature of your own mind."

-James Low

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:57 pm

Malcolm wrote:
dharmagoat wrote:
Malcolm wrote:If you only have one lifetime, and you want to dedicate yourself to the benefit of sentient beings, it is better done in service as a doctor, nurse, fire fighter, aid worker, etc. rather than pretending to oneself that one is a Dharma practitioner.
Not that they are not mutually exclusive.

As Dharma practitioners, we each do what we can. To think that someone is either a fully-fledged Dharma practitioner or not one at all does seem rather... dualistic.
You cannot be a Dharma practitioner and yet reject rebirth. Do we really have to have this conversation yet again?

You are just having a knee-jerk reaction to one thing he said somewhere though, again, he may departs somewhat from traditional views i'm sure, but he is hugely far from a materialist or secular Buddhist etc.
"...if you think about how many hours, months and years of your life you've spent looking at things, being fascinated by things that have now passed away, then how wonderful to spend even five minutes looking into the nature of your own mind."

-James Low

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by dharmagoat » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:00 pm

Malcolm wrote:You cannot be a Dharma practitioner and yet reject rebirth. Do we really have to have this conversation yet again?
It is not the same conversation. Your response is the same, that is all.

I think I need to make it clear again that I am not talking about rejecting rebirth, but rather finding ways to accommodate it.

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by Malcolm » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:05 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
You are just having a knee-jerk reaction to one thing he said somewhere though, again, he may departs somewhat from traditional views i'm sure, but he is hugely far from a materialist or secular Buddhist etc.
You do realize that he participated in Dagara initiations with an African teacher named Malidoma Patrice Somé?
"...of particular impact in my study with Malidoma was an all-night 'earth burial' which, through its initiatory death and rebirth process, allowed my life to crumble and then arise in a way that established earth and the 'body work' once and for all, as the core of my spiritual life"
—— Touching Enlightenment

If you look around, you will discover that Malidoma Patrice Somé is fervent advocate of sacrificing animals. I can't say that this was part of Ray's initiation (though I would be surprised if it was not). We all know how the Buddha felt about animal sacrifice.
Last edited by Malcolm on Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by Malcolm » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:07 pm

dharmagoat wrote:
Malcolm wrote:You cannot be a Dharma practitioner and yet reject rebirth. Do we really have to have this conversation yet again?
It is not the same conversation. Your response is the same, that is all.

I think I need to make it clear again that I am not talking about rejecting rebirth, but rather finding ways to accommodate it.
One can either accept it or not. There is no way to "accommodate it" without a great deal of conceptual proliferation.

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by WeiHan » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:08 pm

dharmagoat wrote:
I think I need to make it clear again that I am not talking about rejecting rebirth, but rather finding ways to accommodate it.
Do you mean evidence for rebirth? Or how it fit into your world view?

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:08 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:
You are just having a knee-jerk reaction to one thing he said somewhere though, again, he may departs somewhat from traditional views i'm sure, but he is hugely far from a materialist or secular Buddhist etc.
You do realize that he participated in Dagara initiations with an African teacher named Malidoma Patrice Somé?
"...of particular impact in my study with Malidoma was an all-night 'earth burial' which, through its initiatory death and rebirth process, allowed my life to crumble and then arise in a way that established earth and the 'body work' once and for all, as the core of my spiritual life"
—— Touching Enlightenment

If you look around, you will discover that Malidoma Patrice Somé is fervent advocate of sacrificing animals. I can't say that this was part of his initiation (though I would be surprised if it was not). We all know how the Buddha felt about animal sacrifice.

I don't know much about his shamanic stuff, i'm speaking strictly about the rebirth comment, and how many of his teachings make it obvious (at least to me) that he believes in rebirth of the mindstream. There is not that much in Touching Enlightenment about it beyond vague mention like this.

If he sacrificed animals, I would think that was awful, and condemn it in the strongest possible terms.
"...if you think about how many hours, months and years of your life you've spent looking at things, being fascinated by things that have now passed away, then how wonderful to spend even five minutes looking into the nature of your own mind."

-James Low

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by Malcolm » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:10 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:

You are just having a knee-jerk reaction to one thing he said somewhere though, again, he may departs somewhat from traditional views i'm sure, but he is hugely far from a materialist or secular Buddhist etc.
I am never said he was either. I simply don't like the way he phrases "rebirth" in his talks and later works as if it is some initiation process. He uses that language over and over again in many places.

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by dharmagoat » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:11 pm

WeiHan wrote:
dharmagoat wrote:
I think I need to make it clear again that I am not talking about rejecting rebirth, but rather finding ways to accommodate it.
Do you mean evidence for rebirth? Or how it fit into your world view?
Being introduced to it in a way that does not incline one to reject it.
Last edited by dharmagoat on Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:13 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by smcj » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:12 pm

You cannot be a Dharma practitioner and yet reject rebirth. Do we really have to have this conversation yet again?
I doubt that someone like Trungpa rejected rebirth in his own practice, yet he did not make a huge issue out it with his students. If so, then how he chose to guide his students towards Dharma is limited only by his own realization and upaya/skill. Thus there is room for acceptance or rejection of what he did, but based only on how one sees his attainments, not on how much latitude a realized teacher has on guiding their students towards Dharma.

For me, he was not my teacher, so I feel no need to formulate an opinion about whether he was realized enough to use his discretion to adapt things the way he did. But I acknowledge that there is room for that type of thing within the tradition--if needed and by a fully realized teacher.
You do realize that he participated in Dagara initiations with an African teacher named Malidoma Patrice Somé?
He is very open minded, maybe too much so. He has not limited his open-mindedness to the teachings coming from Tibet. That may or may not be a good thing. Personally I leave my comfort Zone at the edges of the Vajrayana.
Last edited by smcj on Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
1.The problem isn’t ‘ignorance’. The problem is the mind you have right now. (H.H. Karmapa XVII @NYC 2/4/18)
2. I support Mingyur R and HHDL in their positions against Lama abuse.
3. Student: Lama, I thought I might die but then I realized that the 3 Jewels would protect me.
Lama: Even If you had died the 3 Jewels would still have protected you. (DW post by Fortyeightvows)

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by Malcolm » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:12 pm

dharmagoat wrote:
WeiHan wrote:
dharmagoat wrote:
I think I need to make it clear again that I am not talking about rejecting rebirth, but rather finding ways to accommodate it.
Do you mean evidence for rebirth? Or how it fit into your world view?
Being introduced to it in a way that does not incline one to reject it.
Sorry, there really is no sugar that will mask the taste of rebirth and karma -- it a very strong medicine for a strong disease.

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by Malcolm » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:14 pm

smcj wrote:
You cannot be a Dharma practitioner and yet reject rebirth. Do we really have to have this conversation yet again?
I doubt that someone like Trungpa rejected rebirth in his own practice, yet he did not make a huge issue out it with his students. If so, then how he chose to guide his students towards Dharma is limited only by his own realization and upaya/skill. Thus there is room for acceptance or rejection of what he did, but based only on how one sees his attainments, not on how much latitude a realized teacher has on guiding their students towards Dharma.

For me, he was not my teacher, so I feel no need to formulate an opinion about whether he was realized enough to use his discretion to adapt things the way he did. But I acknowledge that there is room for that type of thing within the tradition--if needed and by a fully realized teacher.
You do realize that he participated in Dagara initiations with an African teacher named Malidoma Patrice Somé?
He is very open minded, maybe too much so. He has not limited his open-mindedness to the teachings coming from Tibet. That may or may not be a good thing. Personally I leave my comfort Zone at the edges of the Vajrayana.
Anyway, teachers like this are not for me. And apart from these things, I really don't have an opinion. People are free to follow whatever they want and whoever they want.

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by WeiHan » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:15 pm

dharmagoat wrote:
WeiHan wrote:
dharmagoat wrote:
I think I need to make it clear again that I am not talking about rejecting rebirth, but rather finding ways to accommodate it.
Do you mean evidence for rebirth? Or how it fit into your world view?
Being introduced to it in a way that does not incline one to reject it.
What attracts you to Buddha Dharma?

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Re: Mahamudra in the Modern World

Post by dharmagoat » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:15 pm

Malcolm wrote:Sorry, there really is no sugar that will mask the taste of rebirth and karma -- it a very strong medicine for a strong disease.
Using your analogy, why can't strong medicine be sweetened, especially if that is the only way the medicine can be swallowed?
Last edited by dharmagoat on Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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