question on distingushing mind from it's nature

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rang.drol
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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by rang.drol » Thu Mar 21, 2019 7:44 am

amanitamusc wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:20 am
Drenpa wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:05 am
amanitamusc wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 4:54 am

1) Signs your Lama teaches and you experience.
2) There is not anything that is not the nature of mind even ignorance when minds nature is recognized.
When not recognized it is still pure just not recognized as such.
Yes, succinct and well said.
I had to add some more.I get carried away.sorry.
Poor us! It seems this forum is full of conceited elephants trying to make sense of or interpreting quotes on rigpa (or Dzogchen) instead if pursuing the direct experience of it... :crying:

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by amanitamusc » Thu Mar 21, 2019 7:57 am

rang.drol wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 7:44 am
amanitamusc wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:20 am
Drenpa wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:05 am


Yes, succinct and well said.
I had to add some more.I get carried away.sorry.
Poor us! It seems this forum is full of conceited elephants trying to make sense of or interpreting quotes on rigpa (or Dzogchen) instead if pursuing the direct experience of it... :crying:
You are able to see what others are doing stop crying ,it will pass.Vajra Brother.

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by Grigoris » Thu Mar 21, 2019 9:04 am

Drenpa wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 11:16 pm
1) You cited the metaphor of crystal/prism.
2) Your sig in no way shape or form indicates that concepts = rigpa.
3) Why is there the critical need for Rushen - to separate Samsara & Nirvana if they are the same thing?
"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

Seems to me that it is exactly what it is saying. What do you believe it is saying?
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by Grigoris » Thu Mar 21, 2019 9:06 am

Sennin wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 11:48 pm
:tongue:
In any case, speaking metaphorically the refracted light from a crystal can be the basis of error, while the crystal in and of itself cant; even though the light arises from the crystal.
You won't see me arguing with that.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by PSM » Thu Mar 21, 2019 2:03 pm

Drenpa wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 12:04 am
Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 11:41 pm
Drenpa wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 11:36 pm


Fair comment on the ad hom, I'll do better - but it comes from a place of sincere frustration. I'm not missing any nuance of this, but it's not up to me to explain Greg's misunderstanding - It's up to the person who made the claim to support it. I can't go any further regarding the separation of samsara and nirvana b/c to do so in a public forum isn't appropriate - which is why it's so difficult to discuss Dzogchen in the first place.

I'd have just kept quiet, as I normally do, but this is such an egregious misunderstanding I at least wanted to point it out, as these days in the non-dual tradition in general. may people think that thoughts and concepts are somehow the same as knowledge or Rigpa, and for as long as they hang onto this, they will never meet real knowledge of what our teachers are introducing. Never. That's why Longchenpa is firm on this to the point of calling those who propagate such views "conceited Elephants". Not my words, his. People can make up their own mind whether or not that shoe fits.
It sounds like you are saying that part of Dzogchen then is to push away conceptual thought, which is the diametric opposite of what I've heard from any teacher, Dzogchen or otherwise.


I assume that's not what you mean at all of course, but if you won't explain yourself further, it's hard to know what you are even critiquing.
You're putting words in my mouth, not sure how you come to the conclusion I'm suggesting conceptual thoughts be pushed away from anything I've said. I'm also surprised that it's not clear what I'm critiquing - Concepts and thoughts are not = to knowledge, Rigpa, nature of mind.

I don't have access to the full Longchenpa quote at the moment, but he talks about how people who don't understand this key point, that thoughts/concepts are /= to nature of mind, also don't understand anything about they "dynamic energy of the basis" as Barron translates it. This is what Sennin is talking about - The dynamic energy of the basis (refracted light in crystal metaphor) can be mistaken - it's the basis for the concretization of the lights into Samsara that we experience daily. Thoughts arise as a mistaken aspect of the dynamic energy of the basis, they are NOT Rigpa, vidya, knowledge of Dzoghcen. They're not equivalent any more than the front and back of a hand are the same thing. You can say they're both of the hand, but we have to distinguish in order to progress on the path, because we find ourselves here, to the point that this mistake has become concrete and overwhelming.
I've just been reading A Lullaby to Awaken the Heart by Karl Brunnhölzl, and as well as being generally brilliant, he talks about this kind of issue at length in chapter 8. Specifically, it talks about how the english language is so dualistic it is hard to convey the meaning of the teachings without accidentally implying things which are not in the Tibetan. He makes the relationship between buddhahood and sentient beings very clear, based on Longchenpa.

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by Sennin » Thu Mar 21, 2019 3:51 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 9:04 am
Drenpa wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 11:16 pm
1) You cited the metaphor of crystal/prism.
2) Your sig in no way shape or form indicates that concepts = rigpa.
3) Why is there the critical need for Rushen - to separate Samsara & Nirvana if they are the same thing?
"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

Seems to me that it is exactly what it is saying. What do you believe it is saying?
Greg,
It's on you to prove how your sig negates Longchenpas statement that Drenpa cited.
  • In Ati these days, conceited elephants [claim]
    the mass of discursive concepts is awakened mind (bodhicitta);
    this confusion is a dimension of complete darkness,
    a hindrance to the meaning of the natural great perfection

    chos dbying mdzod
Because you said this:
The Kungyed Gyalpo seems to disagree.

The metaphor of light refracted through a prism comes to mind.
It appears that you're saying that meditation on being a butcher, prostitute etc. will lead to awakening. :?
"One should always recite mantra, purifying the body."
--Cakrasaṃvara Tantra

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by Grigoris » Thu Mar 21, 2019 4:00 pm

Sennin wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 3:51 pm
Grigoris wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 9:04 am
Drenpa wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 11:16 pm
1) You cited the metaphor of crystal/prism.
2) Your sig in no way shape or form indicates that concepts = rigpa.
3) Why is there the critical need for Rushen - to separate Samsara & Nirvana if they are the same thing?
"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

Seems to me that it is exactly what it is saying. What do you believe it is saying?
Greg,
It's on you to prove how your sig negates Longchenpas statement that Drenpa cited.
  • In Ati these days, conceited elephants [claim]
    the mass of discursive concepts is awakened mind (bodhicitta);
    this confusion is a dimension of complete darkness,
    a hindrance to the meaning of the natural great perfection

    chos dbying mdzod
Because you said this:
The Kungyed Gyalpo seems to disagree.

The metaphor of light refracted through a prism comes to mind.
I do believe the quote speaks for itself. But if you want me to break it down:

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged" ie the impure, "refracted light", states of mind, or samsaric mind.
all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss." are inseperable from (the same as) the pure nature of reality, "white light", the untainted nature of mind.

That is what the passage says.

In which case, it seems to me that the passage contradicts what Longchenpa is saying.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by Sennin » Thu Mar 21, 2019 4:15 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 4:00 pm
Sennin wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 3:51 pm
Grigoris wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 9:04 am


"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

Seems to me that it is exactly what it is saying. What do you believe it is saying?
Greg,
It's on you to prove how your sig negates Longchenpas statement that Drenpa cited.
  • In Ati these days, conceited elephants [claim]
    the mass of discursive concepts is awakened mind (bodhicitta);
    this confusion is a dimension of complete darkness,
    a hindrance to the meaning of the natural great perfection

    chos dbying mdzod
Because you said this:
The Kungyed Gyalpo seems to disagree.

The metaphor of light refracted through a prism comes to mind.
I do believe the quote speaks for itself. But if you want me to break it down:

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged" ie the impure, "refracted light", states of mind, or samsaric mind.
all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."are inseperable from (the same as) the pure nature of reality, white light, the untainted nature of mind.

That is what the passage says.

In which case, it seems to me that the passage contradicts what Longchenpa is saying.
Thanks.

The distinction is that your quote is describing the basis, while Longchenpa is describing the path.
"One should always recite mantra, purifying the body."
--Cakrasaṃvara Tantra

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by florin » Thu Mar 21, 2019 4:32 pm

The Kunjed Gyalpo view is only valid when one lives in the knowledge of primordial state.
To borrow elements from KG view while living in a partial view of a particular yana is dangerous and foolish.

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by Grigoris » Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:15 pm

florin wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 4:32 pm
The Kunjed Gyalpo view is only valid when one lives in the knowledge of primordial state.
To borrow elements from KG view while living in a partial view of a particular yana is dangerous and foolish.
Just as well that I am a dangerous fool then, isn't it?
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by Karma Dondrup Tashi » Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:19 pm

You're not dangerous.

Kidding, I'm kidding ...

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by Gyurme Kundrol » Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:30 pm

Concepts are not rigpa, because if they were there would be no need for a path, direct introduction, training, or anything really. Dharma would be pointless, and all teachers would be wasting their time.

In this context concepts means not recognizing the self-appearances of the basis as self-appearances. Because of this, the third unenlightenment occurs and beings fall into samsara and the process of dependent origination begins. If concepts were the same as rigpa, this would either be impossible and everyone would be Buddhas, or there would be no distinguishing between Buddhas and Sentient Beings and Buddhas would be the same as Sentient Beings. However the precise difference between these two is the failure to recognize the appearances of the basis as self-appearances.

The view being put forth in this KG quote is similar to the metaphor of white and black clouds equally obscuring the sky. In this case the black clouds are "heinous criminals". Its saying that just because these beings have done really horrible things, they still haven't moved an iota away from having their ultimate nature as being primordial Buddhahood. To think that somehow you could sever your connection with your own primordial state is a wrong view, and this statement in the KG is pointing that out. However, its not saying that there is literally no difference between concepts/defilement and rigpa, because again if there were no difference there would be no need for training or doing any of this.

If a person without recognition of minds true nature took this quote as face value, the person and Dharma would quickly part ways.

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by haha » Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:34 pm

One of the possible sigh is that one does not need to worry about "the discursive mind". Even if one is certain about it conceptually, it should be regarded a great gain.

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:40 pm

Ok, let's clarify something:

I personally did not assume that the quote was being put forth to mean "conceptual thought is rigpa" in the way people seem to be assuming.

For someone to think that, they would have to have pretty deficient knowledge. I've seen people claim things like this in FB groups and similar, but I have not seen anyone on this forum that makes that kind of claim. I feel you guys are creating a bit of a straw man, I don't think it's hard for anyone with a basic intellectual knowledge of Dzogchen (or even just Tibetan Buddhism broadly) to understand that such a statement (the KG one) is from the view of wisdom, and not delusion...it is practically axiomatic.

So I don't know if you're trying to "protect" me as the OP, other people reading it, or what, but this is very common sense from within the Tibetan traditions, not something that needs to be argued in particular, from my point of view.
"...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: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by Grigoris » Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:41 pm

If hand wringing and high sounding theorising lead to realisation, we would all be Vidyadhara... :tongue:
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by Gyurme Kundrol » Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:50 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:40 pm
Ok, let's clarify something:

I personally did not assume that the quote was being put forth to mean "conceptual thought is rigpa" in the way people seem to be assuming.

For someone to think that, they would have to have pretty deficient knowledge. I've seen people claim things like this in FB groups and similar, but I have not seen anyone on this forum that makes that kind of claim. I feel you guys are creating a bit of a straw man, I don't think it's hard for anyone with a basic intellectual knowledge of Dzogchen (or even just Tibetan Buddhism broadly) to understand that such a statement (the KG one) is from the view of wisdom, and not delusion...it is practically axiomatic.

So I don't know if you're trying to "protect" me as the OP, other people reading it, or what, but this is very common sense from within the Tibetan traditions, not something that needs to be argued in particular, from my point of view.
My impression was that someone else was accusing Greg of saying that concepts are rigpa based on the quote in his sig, I didn't even realize it started with you. I was just pointing out that this definitely isn't the case, so I think we agree. I think somewhere along the thread this all got lost in translation so to speak. I would be surprised if after all this time either you or Greg were under that impression and dont think either of you actually believe that.

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by Drenpa » Thu Mar 21, 2019 9:04 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 9:04 am
Drenpa wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 11:16 pm
1) You cited the metaphor of crystal/prism.
2) Your sig in no way shape or form indicates that concepts = rigpa.
3) Why is there the critical need for Rushen - to separate Samsara & Nirvana if they are the same thing?
"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

Seems to me that it is exactly what it is saying. What do you believe it is saying?
Hi Greg,

Not how this works. You made the assertion that thoughts/mind/concepts = nature of mind. This is your position, not mine. I asked you to support it through citations. Citations without context are meaningless. For a key point like this, you should not only be able to cite several citations, but commentary as well. After all, there is precise commentary refuting this view - much more than the short passage I cited. I'd be surprised if anyone thought your sig refutes the short bit I cited, let alone everything else the omniscient lama said on the matter - which is extensive. He took great pains to differentiate this point, some of those sources have been cited in this thread.

I've heard other people make this assertion of the view you hold - All of them w/o exception are of the non-dual types who conflate Dzogchen with other traditions. Jax made this exact point back in the day before he was banned from DW, and wasn't able to support it at all. He too attempted to use the Kunjed Gyalpo to justify his wrong views. This is why reading texts through several layers of translation without commentary from a native Tibetan speaker is fraught with peril and a happy hunting ground for wrong views - much like the Hebrew scriptures can be used to support the endless and contradictory positions of Christians. This is why we have this refutation from Longchenpa of this and other dangerous deviations.

If this is a doctrine of Dzogchen, that thoughts are the nature of mind, you'd have to admit, it's key - something central. Thus, there should be commentary by the masters and scriptures that support his position. It's not something trivial.

Longchenpa also says:
"Although one might have a simple interest in this spiritual approach, the chances of having the good fortune to perceive it thoroughly are not even that of a one-hundredth portion split from a single hair. There are those who swagger in their undiscriminating ignorance, whose brows are adorned with golden chains of jealousy and wrongheaded concepts, and who flatter themselves with the assumption that they understand and so have the haughty gait of an elephant. They indulge in afflictive emotions, ignorance, an erroneous spiritual paths. This is not all, however, for some individuals are inclined toward liberation but have little merit and so are in danger of encountering such people, who give the following kinds of instruction to all who meet them: "Whatever arises is the nature of Dharmakaya. Concepts are in themselves naturally occurring timeless awareness"... In such ways they specifically teach false fabrications that deceive beings, yet they are seen as people who expound profound spiritual teachings not found anywhere else. They are indeed nothing more than thieves who nowadays pervert the teachings of the ati approach".
Choying Dzod Richard Barron translation pp 106-107

I'm no scholar, and aware the subset of what I've been taught and seen/read is limited by the dearth of English translations, as well as my own capacity. However, I've never heard this view you've expounded supported - So it's on YOU to explain why any citation you can find supports your view. If you know of some master who's already done this, by all means bring it forward - Tibetan scholarship, if anything, is not about reinventing the wheel. If you can find no authoritative sources, this alone ought to tell you something about the validity of your view. In that case, it's up to you personally to support it without help from the tradition. It's certainly not up to me to defend or analyze your position for you.

I saw your explanation to Sennin, the breakdown of your sig, but you can see that Longchenpa clearly addresses this above when he says:
"... who give the following kinds of instruction to all who meet them: "Whatever arises is the nature of dharmakaya. Concepts in themselves are timeless awareness"
Clearly this is not what the Kunjed Gyalpo is talking about. In composing his Treasury, Longchenpa cited extensively from all of the Tantras we're familiar with, and many no longer extant, so we can be sure that he was aware of the passage you've cited, and he clearly rejects the idea that "whatever arises is the nature of dharmakaya" as you contend.

This is why we have the scriptures and tantras - the realized beings of the past knew precisely what kinds of deviations and traps that we are subject to in our affliction driven existence. They took great pains to clarify these points, and when Longchenpa uses language like he did in this case, calling those who espouse such views he's pretty fired up about it. If that doesn't give you pause to reconsider your position, what would?

I'm finished with this convo and won't be responding further. I've already seen someone on the thread completely misunderstand the point of me quoting this, and they were mocking it - the words of Longchenpa. So this is very negative, and it's not productive to open up more of the Lama's words to misunderstanding and mockery - which is precisely why this stuff is kept secret, even though much of it is published openly such as the text I've cited.

I decided in the end, to post the rest of the quote and the source to give more context - so those interested and wrestling with this issue of mind vs nature of mind have an authentic scriptural source to consider vis a vis what Longchenpa says is your wrong view. Some new people interested in Dzogchen and viewing these threads may give extra weight to what you say, given your position as moderator and very active poster.

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by Grigoris » Thu Mar 21, 2019 9:42 pm

Karma Dondrup Tashi wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 5:19 pm
You're not dangerous.

Kidding, I'm kidding ...
I'm not!
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by Grigoris » Thu Mar 21, 2019 9:46 pm

Drenpa wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 9:04 pm
I've heard other people make this assertion of the view you hold - All of them w/o exception are of the non-dual types who conflate Dzogchen with other traditions. Jax made this exact point back in the day before he was banned from DW, and wasn't able to support it at all. He too attempted to use the Kunjed Gyalpo to justify his wrong views. This is why reading texts through several layers of translation without commentary from a native Tibetan speaker is fraught with peril and a happy hunting ground for wrong views - much like the Hebrew scriptures can be used to support the endless and contradictory positions of Christians. This is why we have this refutation from Longchenpa of this and other dangerous deviations.
You feel better now that you got this off your chest? Good. I'm glad to see that.

How is resting in your natural state going? Thought free? Brilliant! Good for you! :twothumbsup:
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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Re: question on distingushing mind from it's nature

Post by Grigoris » Thu Mar 21, 2019 10:37 pm

So here is the million dollar question: if thoughts and concepts are not also of the nature of mind, if they can only be born of delusion, then has EVERYTHING that has been said and quoted in this thread purely delusional?
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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