is vajrayana budhism a path of renunciation or isn't it?

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smcj
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Re: is vajrayana budhism a path of renunciation or isn't it?

Post by smcj » Fri Jul 03, 2015 5:45 pm

Malcolm wrote:No, I explained this already. In Vajrayāna you do not renounce sense objects, in lower yānas, you do. It is therefore not a path of renunciation.

This is distinct from having renunciation, which is necessary to practice any path at all.
This is a point that is not widely understood, and it needs to be.
**********
Except in presentation I don't see much difference between Malcolm and Tsongkhapafan in this.
Tsongkhapafan wrote:There is no spiritual path without renunciation as the very definition of a spiritual path is an exalted awareness conjoined with non-fabricated renunciation, so of course the Vajrayana is a path of renunciation - it's a supramundane path if practised properly.

Objects are not contaminated from their own side, so if you remember emptiness, your enjoyment is not a cause of samsara.
I see the difference in the two posts as being one of emphasis. Malcolm's post does do a better job of explaining the distinction between the need for renunciation as a foundation for Vajrayana and how the path itself can be characterized as not having renunciation.

My understanding is "having renunciation" means renouncing samsara and your own ignorance. Being able to maintain that attitude while embracing everything life throws at you as an opportunity to grow spiritually is unique to Vajrayana. That is still within the framework of renunciation. It is a renunciation so deep that any situation in life cannot disturb it, and so in every situation you can apply a dharma principle to increase merit and awareness. In the lower yanas the renunciation is not deep enough to handle every situation as opportunity for Dharma. The practitioner would get enmeshed in the appearances of it.

I think both Malcolm and Tsongkhapafan will both agree, perhaps with more detail.
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.
2. 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)

frankc
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Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2014 5:37 pm

Re: is vajrayana budhism a path of renunciation or isn't it?

Post by frankc » Fri Jul 03, 2015 6:25 pm

smcj wrote:
Malcolm wrote:No, I explained this already. In Vajrayāna you do not renounce sense objects, in lower yānas, you do. It is therefore not a path of renunciation.

This is distinct from having renunciation, which is necessary to practice any path at all.
This is a point that is not widely understood, and it needs to be.
**********
Except in presentation I don't see much difference between Malcolm and Tsongkhapafan in this.
Tsongkhapafan wrote:There is no spiritual path without renunciation as the very definition of a spiritual path is an exalted awareness conjoined with non-fabricated renunciation, so of course the Vajrayana is a path of renunciation - it's a supramundane path if practised properly.

Objects are not contaminated from their own side, so if you remember emptiness, your enjoyment is not a cause of samsara.
I see the difference in the two posts as being one of emphasis. Malcolm's post does do a better job of explaining the distinction between the need for renunciation as a foundation for Vajrayana and how the path itself can be characterized as not having renunciation.

My understanding is "having renunciation" means renouncing samsara and your own ignorance. Being able to maintain that attitude while embracing everything life throws at you as an opportunity to grow spiritually is unique to Vajrayana. That is still within the framework of renunciation. It is a renunciation so deep that any situation in life cannot disturb it, and so in every situation you can apply a dharma principle to increase merit and awareness. In the lower yanas the renunciation is not deep enough to handle every situation as opportunity for Dharma. The practitioner would get enmeshed in the appearances of it.

I think both Malcolm and Tsongkhapafan will both agree, perhaps with more detail.
I doubt it. You seem to be trying to interpret Vajrayana through the lens of Sutrayana. In Sutrayana desire is the primary cause of suffering and must be eliminated. For Tantra desire is an ornament of enlightenment. It is a delightful and central method of the religious path. ( Correct me if I'm off Malcom). I guess my confusion isn't whether Vajrayana is a path of renunciation because I get it, it's not. But it's just specifically about Milarepa at this point and how his teachings seem to have a different tone than the Vajrayana I know from the Tantras.

smcj
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Re: is vajrayana budhism a path of renunciation or isn't it?

Post by smcj » Fri Jul 03, 2015 6:39 pm

frankc wrote: I doubt it. You seem to be trying to interpret Vajrayana through the lens of Sutrayana. In Sutrayana desire is the primary cause of suffering and must be eliminated. For Tantra desire is an ornament of enlightenment. It is a delightful and central method of the religious path. ( Correct me if I'm off Malcom). I guess my confusion isn't whether Vajrayana is a path of renunciation because I get it, it's not. But it's just specifically about Milarepa at this point and how his teachings seem different than the Vajrayana I know from the Tantras.
No, actually I'm seeing Vajrayana through the lens of Vajrayana, as it has been explained to me. There may be some Gelug bias since the lama that explained it to me was Gelug.

In the explanation I received, the poisons as such are never to be engaged in, even in Vajrayana. Just as rattlesnake anti-venom is made from venom and then transmuted into medicine, in the same way in Vajrayana enlightened awareness is made from the poisons of afflictions and then transmuted into medicine. If it is not transmuted it is still poison. If you got bit by a rattlesnake you wouldn't try to fix it by having it bite you again. You'd go to the hospital and want real medicine.

The level of renunciation required to perform such a feat is beyond normal understanding. It is not as if a Vajrayana practitioner somehow reverts to a lower standard of practice. The poisons are still poisons if the practitioner does not have the requisite renunciation and transformation abilities.

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

When I say that I am "conservative" that usually can be thought of as a synonym for "party-pooper".
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.
2. 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)

frankc
Posts: 107
Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2014 5:37 pm

Re: is vajrayana budhism a path of renunciation or isn't it?

Post by frankc » Fri Jul 03, 2015 7:15 pm

smcj wrote:
frankc wrote: I doubt it. You seem to be trying to interpret Vajrayana through the lens of Sutrayana. In Sutrayana desire is the primary cause of suffering and must be eliminated. For Tantra desire is an ornament of enlightenment. It is a delightful and central method of the religious path. ( Correct me if I'm off Malcom). I guess my confusion isn't whether Vajrayana is a path of renunciation because I get it, it's not. But it's just specifically about Milarepa at this point and how his teachings seem different than the Vajrayana I know from the Tantras.
No, actually I'm seeing Vajrayana through the lens of Vajrayana, as it has been explained to me. There may be some Gelug bias since the lama that explained it to me was Gelug.

In the explanation I received, the poisons as such are never to be engaged in, even in Vajrayana. Just as rattlesnake anti-venom is made from venom and then transmuted into medicine, in the same way in Vajrayana enlightened awareness is made from the poisons of afflictions and then transmuted into medicine. If it is not transmuted it is still poison. If you got bit by a rattlesnake you wouldn't try to fix it by having it bite you again. You'd go to the hospital and want real medicine.

The level of renunciation required to perform such a feat is beyond normal understanding. It is not as if a Vajrayana practitioner somehow reverts to a lower standard of practice. The poisons are still poisons if the practitioner does not have the requisite renunciation and transformation abilities.

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

When I say that I am "conservative" that usually can be thought of as a synonym for "party-pooper".
The idea of having a level of renunciation beyond normal understanding is of course silly when you read the actual Tantras.

smcj
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Joined: Wed May 29, 2013 6:13 am

Re: is vajrayana budhism a path of renunciation or isn't it?

Post by smcj » Fri Jul 03, 2015 7:22 pm

frankc wrote: The idea of having a level of renunciation beyond normal understanding is of course silly when you read the actual Tantras.
I won't ask you to accept what my teacher said to me as being valid. He established credibility with me, and that's not transferable. Also it may very well be the case that one of my Nyingma teachers would not agree. But suffice it to say that there is a different perspective available.
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.
2. 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)

pael
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Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2013 12:49 pm

Re: is vajrayana budhism a path of renunciation or isn't it?

Post by pael » Sat Aug 08, 2015 3:10 pm

Does wang/initiation/empowerment without commitments make you Vajrayana practicioner?
Can you then meditate metta or foulness of body?
May all beings be free from suffering and causes of suffering

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Karma Dondrup Tashi
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Re: is vajrayana budhism a path of renunciation or isn't it?

Post by Karma Dondrup Tashi » Sat Aug 08, 2015 4:23 pm

Obviously in the view and path, purification, transformation and self-liberation are different from renunciation.

In the fruition, we may consider similarities.

In the basic vehicle, we exclude phenomena outside the panca sila.
In the great vehicle, we exclude phenomena outside the bodhisattva vows or precepts.
In purification/transformation, we exclude phenomena outside observation.
In self-liberation, we exclude no phenomena.

In a way, excluding nothing could be seen as the greatest renunciation of all, or the most difficult.

smcj
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Joined: Wed May 29, 2013 6:13 am

Re: is vajrayana budhism a path of renunciation or isn't it?

Post by smcj » Sat Aug 08, 2015 5:05 pm

Malcolm wrote:We were not talking about afflictions, we were talking about sense objects.
Actually I was talking about afflictions.
...we are not saying that it is a path in which one indulges one's afflictions.
That's what I'm talking about.
We are saying that it is a path in which one does not seek to give up sense objects in order to control afflictions.
That's what everybody else here is talking about, hence the confusion. This thread has the problem of discussing apples and oranges.

These two ideas are completely compatible, contrary to a lot of wishful thinking and popular opinion. Without that understanding Vajrayana gets misinterpreted into being nothing more than common hedonism. I have never met a teacher that even remotely suggests such a thing.
Malcolm wrote:No, I explained this already. In Vajrayāna you do not renounce sense objects, in lower yānas, you do. It is therefore not a path of renunciation.

This is distinct from having renunciation, which is necessary to practice any path at all.
Exactly so. Nice to see we're on the same page.

************************************************************************
Karma Dondrup Tashi wrote:In a way, excluding nothing could be seen as the greatest renunciation of all, or the most difficult.
I prefer to say "most subtle and profound" to " most difficult". "Difficult" makes is seem like it is a struggle.
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.
2. 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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