Seeing in the Dark

Motova
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Seeing in the Dark

Post by Motova » Sun Oct 28, 2018 5:16 pm

I remember Rinpoche said Ayu Khandro could see in the dark. How does one develop this ability?

Does it have to do with unlocking the visions? If so, which vision?

Thank you.
To become a rain man one must master the ten virtues and sciences.

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javier.espinoza.t
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by javier.espinoza.t » Sun Oct 28, 2018 10:04 pm

Motova wrote:
Sun Oct 28, 2018 5:16 pm
I remember Rinpoche said Ayu Khandro could see in the dark. How does one develop this ability?

Does it have to do with unlocking the visions? If so, which vision?

Thank you.
Yantig (?)
what are you doing

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schubertian
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by schubertian » Sun Oct 28, 2018 11:04 pm

As I recall Rinpoche said in his biography that he was surprised to find that Ayu Khandro "could see as well in the dark as in daylight" - something like that.

I'm not sure how literally to take that. In the first place he goes on to describe that her attendant lit a butter lamp so she could give the empowerments. Having an attendant would also greatly lessen the need for vision. But maybe they lit the lamp to accommodate him.

And also, I know from visiting a friend's 99 year old grandmother, who had been totally blind for many, many years and living alone, that the blind are able to navigate around their world with precision and competence - as long you to don't more anything out of place. With time it almost seems as if they can see.

That in no way makes Anu Khandro in any way less extraordinary a person. She was practicing Yangti for what? 40 years?

I guess all I am saying is that is hard to know exactly what she was like. Someone on this board will have to volunteer to remain in darkness for 40 years so we can all find out.

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Naawoo
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by Naawoo » Tue Oct 30, 2018 1:42 pm

Is it really worth seeing in the dark? Then, what is the use of lanterns :)
I think there is no better ability of a Master than the liberated mind of his/hers.
No physical abilities of human beings now transcend mechanical/electronic devices :)

LoveFromColorado
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by LoveFromColorado » Tue Oct 30, 2018 3:16 pm

I was thinking the same thing. Seeking some kind of "special" power through a practice should give one pause in regards to their motivation. Of course, there could be a valid motivation, but I would suspect it would be precise and of a rare need.

Otherwise you will start judging your practice, meditations, etc., by the experience and start "doing" which I think will lead to unhappiness.

Of course, the OP could just be curious, which is altogether different :) Nothing wrong with simple curiosity

Motova
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by Motova » Tue Oct 30, 2018 6:51 pm

Naawoo wrote:
Tue Oct 30, 2018 1:42 pm
Is it really worth seeing in the dark? Then, what is the use of lanterns :)
I think there is no better ability of a Master than the liberated mind of his/hers.
No physical abilities of human beings now transcend mechanical/electronic devices :)
Dude you're getting scooped, get the spoonfingers out of your pockets and realize it takes money to make money.
To become a rain man one must master the ten virtues and sciences.

Motova
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by Motova » Tue Oct 30, 2018 6:53 pm

LoveFromColorado wrote:
Tue Oct 30, 2018 3:16 pm
I was thinking the same thing. Seeking some kind of "special" power through a practice should give one pause in regards to their motivation. Of course, there could be a valid motivation, but I would suspect it would be precise and of a rare need.

Otherwise you will start judging your practice, meditations, etc., by the experience and start "doing" which I think will lead to unhappiness.

Of course, the OP could just be curious, which is altogether different :) Nothing wrong with simple curiosity
Experiences are good in meditation.
To become a rain man one must master the ten virtues and sciences.

Motova
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by Motova » Tue Oct 30, 2018 6:56 pm

schubertian wrote:
Sun Oct 28, 2018 11:04 pm
As I recall Rinpoche said in his biography that he was surprised to find that Ayu Khandro "could see as well in the dark as in daylight" - something like that.

I'm not sure how literally to take that. In the first place he goes on to describe that her attendant lit a butter lamp so she could give the empowerments. Having an attendant would also greatly lessen the need for vision. But maybe they lit the lamp to accommodate him.

And also, I know from visiting a friend's 99 year old grandmother, who had been totally blind for many, many years and living alone, that the blind are able to navigate around their world with precision and competence - as long you to don't more anything out of place. With time it almost seems as if they can see.

That in no way makes Anu Khandro in any way less extraordinary a person. She was practicing Yangti for what? 40 years?

I guess all I am saying is that is hard to know exactly what she was like. Someone on this board will have to volunteer to remain in darkness for 40 years so we can all find out.
I disagree.
To become a rain man one must master the ten virtues and sciences.

Motova
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by Motova » Tue Oct 30, 2018 7:09 pm

Motova wrote:
Tue Oct 30, 2018 6:51 pm
Naawoo wrote:
Tue Oct 30, 2018 1:42 pm
Is it really worth seeing in the dark? Then, what is the use of lanterns :)
I think there is no better ability of a Master than the liberated mind of his/hers.
No physical abilities of human beings now transcend mechanical/electronic devices :)
Dude you're getting scooped, get the spoonfingers out of your pockets and realize it takes money to make money.
To become a rain man one must master the ten virtues and sciences.

oldbob
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by oldbob » Tue Oct 30, 2018 9:56 pm

Motova wrote:
Sun Oct 28, 2018 5:16 pm
I remember Rinpoche said Ayu Khandro could see in the dark. How does one develop this ability?

Does it have to do with unlocking the visions? If so, which vision?

Thank you.
:namaste: to all and All.

While the transmission of the Dark Retreat is currently unavailable within the Dzogchen Community, I am 100% sure that soon it will be again. There are also other Dzogchen teachers who may teach the Dark Retreat.

viewtopic.php?f=48&t=8917

When you get the transmission of the Dark Retreat and do the practice for a few days, you may come to see objects in the room and your own body as made of light. This is not ordinary seeing as your eyes are not receiving any reflected light. Perhaps this can be explained by:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black-body_radiation

The fact that you see your body as light may carry over to your perception after being in the dark and this makes things less heavy and burdensome.

Taking the transmission of this practice and then showing up and doing the practice is how you develop this ability.

As to “unlocking the visions” and “which visions”, the answer is all visions are unlocked: both those within the dark retreat and ordinary seeing after the dark retreat. The way that this happens is that you understand, while in the retreat, that all visions, while appearing solid and real, are actually only the products of your own mind, because there is no light striking your eyes. In a similar way, this understanding then informs your ordinary seeing with your eyes after the dark retreat. Whatever appears, and your reaction to what appears, you still understand as only the product of your mind. Understanding this, as you integrate all appearances with your natural mind, you are more relaxed about things.

I did the 49 days of my dark retreat in the Yangti-Hilton at Tseygyalgar East. I did this over several sessions which were cumulative in effect. Each session took up where the previous left off. There are seven levels and you do them in sequence. In the past, the Dark Retreat house was available during all 4 seasons. I don't know if this is still the case.

P.O. Box 479
18 Schoolhouse Rd.
Conway, MA 01341
Phone: 413-369-4153
Fax: 413-369-4473
Secretary: secretary@tsegyalgar.org
Gekö: geko@tsegyalgar.org

The Dark Retreat house there is in the middle of the woods and is very quiet. It was designed by ChNNR specifically for the Dark Retreat, and is very comfortable and cozy. While it accommodates several retreatants at the same time, I found it less distracting to be in retreat by myself.

The Yangti – Dark Retreat, the Purification of the Six Lokas, the Zer Nga, and Rushens are, for me, the most powerful transformational practices of the secondary practices as taught by ChNNR. If you accomplish any of them your way of seeing the world will be changed and you will be more relaxed.

A key point is to never force yourself to practice and to remember that you can always just stop the practice at any time. Always remember if things seem overwhelming that ancient saying:

“Don’t have a cow, man.” Then all will go well.

:heart:

Lukeinaz
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by Lukeinaz » Tue Oct 30, 2018 11:13 pm

is any amount of dark practice advisable without specific transmission? i seem to recall someone here preparing for a weekend or so?
You are truly astonishing--going to look for yourself when you already are yourself! --Longchen Rabjam

Motova
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by Motova » Wed Oct 31, 2018 1:49 am

oldbob wrote:
Tue Oct 30, 2018 9:56 pm
Motova wrote:
Sun Oct 28, 2018 5:16 pm
I remember Rinpoche said Ayu Khandro could see in the dark. How does one develop this ability?

Does it have to do with unlocking the visions? If so, which vision?

Thank you.
:namaste: to all and All.

While the transmission of the Dark Retreat is currently unavailable within the Dzogchen Community, I am 100% sure that soon it will be again. There are also other Dzogchen teachers who may teach the Dark Retreat.

viewtopic.php?f=48&t=8917

When you get the transmission of the Dark Retreat and do the practice for a few days, you may come to see objects in the room and your own body as made of light. This is not ordinary seeing as your eyes are not receiving any reflected light. Perhaps this can be explained by:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black-body_radiation

The fact that you see your body as light may carry over to your perception after being in the dark and this makes things less heavy and burdensome.

Taking the transmission of this practice and then showing up and doing the practice is how you develop this ability.

As to “unlocking the visions” and “which visions”, the answer is all visions are unlocked: both those within the dark retreat and ordinary seeing after the dark retreat. The way that this happens is that you understand, while in the retreat, that all visions, while appearing solid and real, are actually only the products of your own mind, because there is no light striking your eyes. In a similar way, this understanding then informs your ordinary seeing with your eyes after the dark retreat. Whatever appears, and your reaction to what appears, you still understand as only the product of your mind. Understanding this, as you integrate all appearances with your natural mind, you are more relaxed about things.

I did the 49 days of my dark retreat in the Yangti-Hilton at Tseygyalgar East. I did this over several sessions which were cumulative in effect. Each session took up where the previous left off. There are seven levels and you do them in sequence. In the past, the Dark Retreat house was available during all 4 seasons. I don't know if this is still the case.

P.O. Box 479
18 Schoolhouse Rd.
Conway, MA 01341
Phone: 413-369-4153
Fax: 413-369-4473
Secretary: secretary@tsegyalgar.org
Gekö: geko@tsegyalgar.org

The Dark Retreat house there is in the middle of the woods and is very quiet. It was designed by ChNNR specifically for the Dark Retreat, and is very comfortable and cozy. While it accommodates several retreatants at the same time, I found it less distracting to be in retreat by myself.

The Yangti – Dark Retreat, the Purification of the Six Lokas, the Zer Nga, and Rushens are, for me, the most powerful transformational practices of the secondary practices as taught by ChNNR. If you accomplish any of them your way of seeing the world will be changed and you will be more relaxed.

A key point is to never force yourself to practice and to remember that you can always just stop the practice at any time. Always remember if things seem overwhelming that ancient saying:

“Don’t have a cow, man.” Then all will go well.

:heart:
Thank you. :bow:
To become a rain man one must master the ten virtues and sciences.

oldbob
Posts: 730
Joined: Sun May 06, 2012 8:19 am

Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by oldbob » Wed Oct 31, 2018 8:46 am

Lukeinaz wrote:
Tue Oct 30, 2018 11:13 pm
is any amount of dark practice advisable without specific transmission? i seem to recall someone here preparing for a weekend or so?
Very good question.

Probably depends on the individual. If in someones past life they were Ayu Khandro perhaps there is no problem.

Always better to have a specific transmission. Always better to err on the side of caution. (I asked three Masters for permission to do a Togyal retreat before attempting this.) I believe that ChNNR taught a beginning Dark Retreat based on the Guru Yoga of the White Ah. If you have this transmission perhaps it is ok to do a short retreat, doing the GYWA before going in and while in the dark. I had this practice on a cassette recorder so I could sing along without having to memorize the practice.

You might send this question to one of the SMS teachers and see what they say. I would suggest Elio Guarisco.

Happy Halloween all.

:stirthepot:

:heart:

pemachophel
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by pemachophel » Thu Nov 01, 2018 2:08 pm

As Old Bob nicely and very clearly explained, this practice helps one realize that our so-called physical body is only a projection based on mistaken habituation. If you don't understand and at least intellectually accept that, then why do dark retreat or even Vajra yang self-visualization?
Pema Chophel པདྨ་ཆོས་འཕེལ

humble.student
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by humble.student » Thu Nov 01, 2018 6:42 pm

Hatchell's book "Naked Seeing" goes into this in some depth, as I recall, but as to the accuracy of his take, that is another matter.

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Monlam Tharchin
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by Monlam Tharchin » Fri Nov 02, 2018 4:38 pm

I've split the conversation to create a new thread about a scientific take on this to the Open Dharma forum. Please continue that thread of the conversation there.
Amitabha!
OM PADMO USHNISHA VIMALE HUM PHAT (Lotus Pinnacle of Amoghapasha)
OM HANU PHASHA BHARA HE YE SVAHA ("Just by Seeing" Mantra)
AH AAH SHA SA MA HA (Six Syllables of Clairvoyance Mantra)


The Buddhas and Bodhisattvas have unobstructed vision in all directions.
Everything is in their presence; and I stand in front of them. -- Shantideva

WeiHan
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by WeiHan » Fri Nov 02, 2018 4:42 pm

Thankyou.

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Sonam Wangchug
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by Sonam Wangchug » Sat Nov 03, 2018 3:49 am

Chagdud rinpoche gained this ability during his first 3-year retreat. You can read about that in the book Lord of the dance.

oldbob
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by oldbob » Sat Nov 03, 2018 1:23 pm

Sonam Wangchug wrote:
Sat Nov 03, 2018 3:49 am
Chagdud rinpoche gained this ability during his first 3-year retreat. You can read about that in the book Lord of the dance.
My 2 cents is that anyone can gain this ability by completing the practice. It goes with the territory and is nothing special.

Chagdud Rinpoche was a very kindly Mahasiddha who turned the wheel for many. Those who met him were very fortunate.

oldbob

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kalden yungdrung
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Re: Seeing in the Dark

Post by kalden yungdrung » Sat Nov 03, 2018 3:23 pm

Motova wrote:
Sun Oct 28, 2018 5:16 pm
I remember Rinpoche said Ayu Khandro could see in the dark. How does one develop this ability?

Does it have to do with unlocking the visions? If so, which vision?

Thank you.
To be able of Awareness in the Dark Room is a method used in Dzogchen.
The Darkness is here the medium, another medium would be the blue skies.

As a basic we must have a stable Presence of Awareness.

This Dark Retreat Method goes beyond the daily illusory consciousness.


To be Aware in the dark does not make use of the consciousness, so this presence in the Dark Room goes BEYOND the consciousness.

We have 2 ways of seeing, one is looking from outside to inside with knowing everything (remembered) by its name etc. (stored in the Alaya Vinjana)
The other way is "looking" from inside to outsside, which projects the visions into the darkness.
In the darkness there is nothing visible, so what is "seen" does not originate in the darkness.

This is finally the prove that visions come from inside to outside, without the intervention of the consciousness.
This Awareness resembles the Bardo State of Dying very much, here do not come the visions from outside to inside too.
Bardo by Hearing advices: "Know that what you see, does not come from outside ".

Know a story of a friend of mine , whose brother was one time incarcerated in Alcatraz.
Well this person was sometimes punished with isolation in the dark room in the basement.
There was no light at all, but this man found it an amusing time to be there.This because he saw there many coloured visions.
But this man had not at all experience with Dzogchen Visions, whereas his brother after 25 years had that experience.

It means everybody has sometimes these visions, but nearly nobody knows what it is.
The best meditation is no meditation

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