Beginner in Mahamudra

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Johnny Dangerous
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Re: Beginner in Mahamudra

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Tue Mar 12, 2019 7:36 am

PeterC wrote:
Tue Mar 12, 2019 6:47 am
Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Tue Mar 12, 2019 6:41 am
PeterC wrote:
Tue Mar 12, 2019 5:30 am


I've been pretty explicit about why I think it's important to reiterate these points when people turn up and say "hey, it's hard to find a teacher, perhaps I can just read this book...". They say these things because (a) they haven't read the mountain of texts talking about the essential importance of a living teacher, and (b) they haven't experienced what a living teacher can give you that a book can't. It would be unkind to them not to point this out. But I've now said it a number of times on this thread, and so I'll stop belaboring this particular point.

The original post is literally someone asking about books and book recommendations, not someone saying they are planning to discover the nature of mind via the Internet.

Sometimes it's reasonable to simply make qualified book recommendations and give a person the benefit of the doubt, rather than immediately assuming the worst of their intentions.

I asked questions like these when I started here (all while spending a big chunk of my income and free time on Dharma teachings - already having a teacher) and yet still people would think it necessary to do things like this. Unless they give you their story, you do not know who is asking the questions or what they are doing outside of their request for book recommendations.

There are also lots of people with five trillion empowerments that don't seem to be particularly devoted students, while there are some with no empowerments who might be truly drawn to the teachings, for a number of reasons - among them being from other traditions as I mentioned, such as Zen or Chan. Intention/motivation is not always something that comes through in a simple request for book recommendations either.

I think you are going way farther than recommending a teacher (I've done that too in this thread) you are telling someone they should not read a book, essentially.

But I wasn't replying to the OP - who hasn't been here for a while. I was replying to someone else who was making much broader comments than simply a request for book suggestions.

Anyway, I think our respective opinions are clear. Like I said, I won't belabor this point further.


Edit: I did in fact tell the OP that they should find a teacher and not try to learn this from a book. That was because the OP described themself as a beginner wanting "the most complete and best introduction for beginners in Mahamudra". The most complete and best introduction is from a teacher. I don't think anyone should feel bad about saying that.

It's up to you what you feel bad about man. I think you are going way overboard, and moreover I think it's a general trend on DW when it comes to this subject, I think many people here communicate terribly when "what books should I read" comes up, I don't think trying to nanny people like that does much good, and I suspect it creates more resistance than it does inspire adherence to the teachings... though I don't doubt the good intentions behind it at all. I'll leave it at that.
"...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

PeterC
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Re: Beginner in Mahamudra

Post by PeterC » Tue Mar 12, 2019 7:54 am

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Tue Mar 12, 2019 7:36 am

It's up to you what you feel bad about man. I think you are going way overboard, and moreover I think it's a general trend on DW when it comes to this subject, I think many people here communicate terribly when "what books should I read" comes up, I don't think trying to nanny people like that does much good, and I suspect it creates more resistance than it does inspire adherence to the teachings... though I don't doubt the good intentions behind it at all. I'll leave it at that.
I think at this point someone reading the thread will be exposed to a full range of arguments on the question.

Since the OP is long gone, should we close the discussion?

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Re: Beginner in Mahamudra

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Tue Mar 12, 2019 7:56 am

Not a bad idea.
"...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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