A question about secrecy within Tibetan Buddhism

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yagmort
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Re: A question about secrecy within Tibetan Buddhism

Post by yagmort »

hi Magnus, thank you for sharing your opinion. i guess we have agree to disagree. it's nice to know it works for you just fine. as for me i like to go old-school tibetan way. that is, you get close to your guru so you can be really exposed to him for him to guide you. many westerners nowadays think they now better themselves what their karmic inclinations or general propensities are, so they chase empowerments instead of finding a guru and just receiving empowerments and practice whatever their guru deem appropriate. i've seen people who are like "i got teachings from Karmapa, from HH Dalai Lama, from Tai Situpa, Thrangu Rinpoche and i hope to meet Sakya Trizin next week to receive some empowerments from him as well". imho, that is rather a homegrown approach. on the other hand one Rinpoche i know quite close told me his guru was always there for him for 3 years straight. he got all necessary empowerments from him. they could literally wake him up at night if they got any questions, he was that encouraging. he was very strict too, so all their group got at least 6 hours of rigorous practice a day, that is outside of retreat settings. again, i have to repeat that this is all just my humble opinion, but i got my confirmations from teachers.
the problem with westerners is that most of them got many worldly responsibilities, so naturally you do what you can do according to your situation, but that doesn't mean this is the best or the only way. if Dharma is really high on one's priority list, than it's possible to find a way to change your life to make it suitable for practice. for example i've seen people who prefer to stay single and luve on a meager income to make room for practice.
Last edited by yagmort on Sun Sep 13, 2020 10:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Aryjna
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Re: A question about secrecy within Tibetan Buddhism

Post by Aryjna »

yagmort wrote: Sun Sep 13, 2020 10:46 am i've seen people who are like "i got teachings from Karmapa, from HH Dalai Lama, from Tai Situpa, Thrangu Rinpoche and i hope to meet Sakya Trizin next week to receive some empowerments from him as well". imho, that is rather a homegrown approach.
That is not 'homegrown', that is the best approach according to various teachers, scriptures, and texts containing pith instructions by past masters. Do you have particular quotations in mind that support your view?
yagmort
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Re: A question about secrecy within Tibetan Buddhism

Post by yagmort »

Aryjna wrote: Sun Sep 13, 2020 10:50 am
yagmort wrote: Sun Sep 13, 2020 10:46 am i've seen people who are like "i got teachings from Karmapa, from HH Dalai Lama, from Tai Situpa, Thrangu Rinpoche and i hope to meet Sakya Trizin next week to receive some empowerments from him as well". imho, that is rather a homegrown approach.
That is not 'homegrown', that is the best approach according to various teachers, scriptures, and texts containing pith instructions by past masters. Do you have particular quotations in mind that support your view?
nope, no quotation, just thorough discussions with my teacher. i recall vaguely Namkhai Norbu says that tibetan masters nowadays is like deers who veing hunted for their horns, which are like empowerments, really funny quote i wish i remember where i read it... well, in turn, do you have quotations that says that is the best approach?
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Aryjna
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Re: A question about secrecy within Tibetan Buddhism

Post by Aryjna »

yagmort wrote: Sun Sep 13, 2020 11:00 am
Aryjna wrote: Sun Sep 13, 2020 10:50 am
yagmort wrote: Sun Sep 13, 2020 10:46 am i've seen people who are like "i got teachings from Karmapa, from HH Dalai Lama, from Tai Situpa, Thrangu Rinpoche and i hope to meet Sakya Trizin next week to receive some empowerments from him as well". imho, that is rather a homegrown approach.
That is not 'homegrown', that is the best approach according to various teachers, scriptures, and texts containing pith instructions by past masters. Do you have particular quotations in mind that support your view?
nope, no quotation, just thorough discussions with my teacher. i recall vaguely Namkhai Norbu says that tibetan masters nowadays is like deers who veing hunted for their horns, which are like empowerments, really funny quote i wish i remember where i read it... well, in turn, do you have quotations that says that is the best approach?
ChNNR received teachings from many masters, and in his biography he mentions situations where his uncles heard there was a good master nearby, whom they hadn't met before, and took ChNNR to meet him and receive teachings. ChNNR also received empowerments from the Dalai Lama, even though he long ago met his main teachers. The same is true for many other teachers. Yes, I have specific quotes in mind, but I will not post them here because they are restricted/semi-restricted. But I don't have to. You are the one making the claim, so you are the one who should provide support for it.

The quote about the deer is about going for teachings with the wrong motivation, not about going for teachings in general. You are telling people not to go and meet Sakya Trizin, the Dalai Lama, and Thrangu Rinpoche, if they get the chance. If you actually influence someone enough so that they actually take your word for it, do you think the result will be good for either of you?
yagmort
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Re: A question about secrecy within Tibetan Buddhism

Post by yagmort »

Aryjna wrote: Sun Sep 13, 2020 11:12 am ...You are telling people not to go and meet Sakya Trizin, the Dalai Lama, and Thrangu Rinpoche, if they get the chance. If you actually influence someone enough so that they actually take your word for it, do you think the result will be good for either of you?
nope, i'm not telling that.
nope, i'm not influence anyone as i said several times it's my humble opinion.
what i'm saying is i personally feel it is far more important to find your guru and stick with him rather than going around hoarding empowerments from masters who don't even know your name. sticking with one guru will give one everything one possibly need, you'll start with ngöndro and subsequently receive all necessary guidance, empowerments, pith instructions and just common wisdom on your path.
i also find it questionable when you use masters having lots of teachers as an excuse for amateurs. most masters stick with single guru, and they go on with other teachers once they get matured under tutorship of this guru, who is actually the one who normally advice them to seek particular empowerments/teachings from other teachers, like in your example with Namkhai Norbu's uncle advice.

if you find my words suspicious just bring this topic up next time you talk to your teacher.
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Aryjna
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Re: A question about secrecy within Tibetan Buddhism

Post by Aryjna »

yagmort wrote: Sun Sep 13, 2020 11:28 am
Aryjna wrote: Sun Sep 13, 2020 11:12 am ...You are telling people not to go and meet Sakya Trizin, the Dalai Lama, and Thrangu Rinpoche, if they get the chance. If you actually influence someone enough so that they actually take your word for it, do you think the result will be good for either of you?
nope, i'm not telling that.
nope, i'm not influence anyone as i said several times it's my humble opinion.
what i'm saying is i personally feel it is far more important to find your guru and stick with him rather than going around hoarding empowerments from masters who don't even know your name. sticking with one guru will give one everything one possibly need, you'll start with ngöndro and subsequently receive all necessary guidance, empowerments, pith instructions and just common wisdom on your path.
i also find it questionable when you use masters having lots of teachers as an excuse for amateurs. most masters stick with single guru, and they go on with other teachers once they get matured under tutorship of this guru, who is actually the one who normally advice them to seek particular empowerments/teachings from other teachers, like in your example with Namkhai Norbu's uncle advice.

if you find my words suspicious just bring this topic up next time you talk to your teacher.
Yes, you do add that it is your opinion, however you freely speak as if you know the minds of 'westerners' and what they are doing. You cannot just say whatever you want and get out of offering any supporting evidence by adding that it is your opinion. If you want to support what you said then do so, otherwise there is no point to continue the discussion.
Norwegian
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Re: A question about secrecy within Tibetan Buddhism

Post by Norwegian »

yagmort wrote: Sun Sep 13, 2020 11:28 am
Aryjna wrote: Sun Sep 13, 2020 11:12 am ...You are telling people not to go and meet Sakya Trizin, the Dalai Lama, and Thrangu Rinpoche, if they get the chance. If you actually influence someone enough so that they actually take your word for it, do you think the result will be good for either of you?
nope, i'm not telling that.
nope, i'm not influence anyone as i said several times it's my humble opinion.
what i'm saying is i personally feel it is far more important to find your guru and stick with him rather than going around hoarding empowerments from masters who don't even know your name. sticking with one guru will give one everything one possibly need, you'll start with ngöndro and subsequently receive all necessary guidance, empowerments, pith instructions and just common wisdom on your path.
i also find it questionable when you use masters having lots of teachers as an excuse for amateurs. most masters stick with single guru, and they go on with other teachers once they get matured under tutorship of this guru, who is actually the one who normally advice them to seek particular empowerments/teachings from other teachers, like in your example with Namkhai Norbu's uncle advice.

if you find my words suspicious just bring this topic up next time you talk to your teacher.
Since you refer to Chögyal Namkhai Norbu, here's a quote from a Dzogchen tantra, which ChNN referred to many times:

As a bee seeks nectar
from all kinds of flowers,
seek teachings everywhere.

Like a deer that finds a quiet place to graze,
seek seclusion to digest all you have gathered.

Like a lion, live completely free of all fear.
And, finally, like a madman, beyond all limits,
go wherever you please.


This is what a beginner is supposed to do: To seek out teachings from many qualified teachers.
"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
Danny
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Re: A question about secrecy within Tibetan Buddhism

Post by Danny »

I found out like 3 days ago that my refuge teacher from a legit tradition and lineage was a sexual predator. That was a deep secret, unknown to me, decades ago apparently. So last few days I’ve been pondering about any samaya and also where that puts my refuge vows etc. So I’ve been duped. It’s like a big kick in the balls from a guru that I had pure view of. Turns out he was just a dirty old man. Talk about a plot twist. I left that sangha 18 years before the outing, was not even looking backwards, had moved on to better things. So I rationalize it like this, all those years ago, I took refuge in the Buddha dharma sangha, not the teacher personally, since he destroyed his own vows and ordination with a downfall, whether confessed or not as a partial downfall is irrelevant to me. It basically voids my refuge, least of all the tantric samaya. So people bellyaching really have no problems at all. If that dirty old man had defeat in secret with his own vows, how he had the balls to confer it to others?
What a world!
Maybe in a few days I’ll have it all in perspective, but for now I’m trying to figure a lot of crap out.
And I don’t like it when people try to wash that away with moral relativism arguments, and gooey eyed talk about “faith” and all that about higher vows and consort this and that, for me is simple,

don’t start none, won’t be none!

So that’s one aspect to secrecy in Tibetan Buddhism.
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heart
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Re: A question about secrecy within Tibetan Buddhism

Post by heart »

yagmort wrote: Sun Sep 13, 2020 10:46 am hi Magnus, thank you for sharing your opinion. i guess we have agree to disagree. it's nice to know it works for you just fine. as for me i like to go old-school tibetan way. that is, you get close to your guru so you can be really exposed to him for him to guide you. many westerners nowadays think they now better themselves what their karmic inclinations or general propensities are, so they chase empowerments instead of finding a guru and just receiving empowerments and practice whatever their guru deem appropriate. i've seen people who are like "i got teachings from Karmapa, from HH Dalai Lama, from Tai Situpa, Thrangu Rinpoche and i hope to meet Sakya Trizin next week to receive some empowerments from him as well". imho, that is rather a homegrown approach. on the other hand one Rinpoche i know quite close told me his guru was always there for him for 3 years straight. he got all necessary empowerments from him. they could literally wake him up at night if they got any questions, he was that encouraging. he was very strict too, so all their group got at least 6 hours of rigorous practice a day, that is outside of retreat settings. again, i have to repeat that this is all just my humble opinion, but i got my confirmations from teachers.
the problem with westerners is that most of them got many worldly responsibilities, so naturally you do what you can do according to your situation, but that doesn't mean this is the best or the only way. if Dharma is really high on one's priority list, than it's possible to find a way to change your life to make it suitable for practice. for example i've seen people who prefer to stay single and luve on a meager income to make room for practice.
I am just telling you that it isn't impossible even if you can't get that perfect situation. In fact many practitioners in Tibet didn't get that perfect situation you dream of. When you find a master that actually can get through to you, you should trust that instead of chasing the perfect teaching and the perfect circumstances. You can do a lot even if you have family and work full time.

Many people in Tibet did the same thing as westerners do, chasing empowerments. They are not so different from us. Most of them find reciting the same thing 100.000 times boring. Westerners can be better practitioners than Tibetans.

/magnus
"We are all here to help each other go through this thing, whatever it is."
~Kurt Vonnegut

"The principal practice is Guruyoga. But we need to understand that any secondary practice combined with Guruyoga becomes a principal practice." ChNNR (Teachings on Thun and Ganapuja)
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