Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

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Knotty Veneer
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Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

Post by Knotty Veneer » Sun Nov 03, 2013 11:02 am

A friend has writen to me asking me to recommend a good general introduction to Tibetan Buddhist practice particularly in the Kagyu tradition.

I've read a lot of stuff but can't think of anything that might fit bit the bill. This is someone who is not a Buddhist (although they have done a mindfulness course).

Anyone like to help me out with some suggestion?
“Trump’s grand and vulgar self-absorption is inviting all of us to examine our own selfishness. His ignorance calls us to attend to our own blind spots. The fears that he stokes and the isolation he promotes goad us to be braver, more generous.” - James S. Gordon.

KonchokZoepa
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Re: Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

Post by KonchokZoepa » Sun Nov 03, 2013 11:08 am

i would recommend Lama Zopa Rinpoche's '' how to practice Dharma - teaching on the eight worldly dharmas '' this is not a kagyu book as you know but i think it is a very important and one of a kind work on buddhist psychology and the core of buddhist mind training practice, even though its not lojong.

i would cover this buddhist psychology and mind training aspect of mahayana before introducing vajrayana.

the other book would maybe be sun of wisdom by khenpo tsultrim gyamtso. some middle way text.
If the thought of demons
Never rises in your mind,
You need not fear the demon hosts around you.
It is most important to tame your mind within....

In so far as the Ultimate, or the true nature of being is concerned,
there are neither buddhas or demons.
He who frees himself from fear and hope, evil and virtue,
will realize the insubstantial and groundless nature of confusion.
Samsara will then appear as the mahamudra itself….

-Milarepa

OMMANIPADMEHUNG

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ls6P9tOYmdo

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smcj
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Re: Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

Post by smcj » Sun Nov 03, 2013 11:28 am

It's not a practice book, but as a general introduction I'd recommend Dr. Reginald Rays' "Indestructible Truth" and "Secret of the Vajra World". He wrote them as a college level text for and introductory course in Tibetan Buddhism. Dr. Ray was the senior meditation instructor for Trungpa's organization so they don't read like a college text. They read like they were written by a practitioner. There is absolutely no Trungpa 'spin' on the Dharma at all though. He gets everything right, and is a good writer as well.

Once you've got a good general ed type knowledge then you can get specific instructions on beginner's practice. Or you can cut to the chase and sign up with Dzogchen Community, if you're so disposed. I'm not, but that's just me.
In the Tantra of the Beautiful Auspiciousness (bKra shis mdzes ldan gyi rgyud), this "Great Primordial Purity" (spyi gzhi) is defined as follows:

What is known as "The Great Primordial Purity”
Is the state abiding before authentic Buddhas arose
And before impure sentient beings appeared;
It is called the great Primordial radiance of immutable awareness.

*****
Sometimes you can get shown the light
In the strangest of places
If you look at it right.
-Robert Hunter-

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justsit
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Re: Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

Post by justsit » Sun Nov 03, 2013 2:00 pm

Perhaps The Essence of Buddhism, by Traleg Rinpoche

palchi
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Re: Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

Post by palchi » Sun Nov 03, 2013 2:38 pm

Mingyur Rinpoche's book 'The joy of living' is very good for beginners.

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bryandavis
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Re: Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

Post by bryandavis » Sun Nov 03, 2013 3:05 pm

Greetings,

I would say if your friend wants an outline of what the Kagyu system is about then "wild awakening" by Dzogchen Ponlop is very good. Half the book is The mahamudra aproach especially in Karma Kagyu then the other Half is the Dzogchen approach. Then It would be a very good idea for them to read the forward and ending discussion of the translation "rain of wisdom" by the Nalanda Translation Committee and Trungpa.

This will cover both the technical steps and basic overview of the Kagyu schools in general, by reading Ponlop Rinpoches outline, and by reading the Rain of Wisdom forward / end section it will cover a lot of important specifics of devotion and the kagyu view on that.

thats my three cents.

all the best

bryan.

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practitioner
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Re: Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

Post by practitioner » Sun Nov 03, 2013 5:23 pm

I second the recommendation of The Joy of Living
One should do nothing other than benefit sentient beings either directly or indirectly - Shantideva

philji
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Re: Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

Post by philji » Sun Nov 03, 2013 7:13 pm

Following on from Joy of Living is Joyful Wisdom by Mingyur Rinpoche...
As mentioned earlier Ponlop Rinpoche is always worth reading as is Tai Situ Rinpoche.

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dzogchungpa
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Re: Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

Post by dzogchungpa » Sun Nov 03, 2013 7:17 pm

I think Reginald Ray's 2 books would fit the bill nicely.
Through Dzogchen we can really understand what God is and we don’t have to worry if there is a God or not. God always exists as our real nature, the base, for everybody. - Chögyal Namkhai Norbu

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Palzang Jangchub
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Re: Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

Post by Palzang Jangchub » Sun Nov 03, 2013 11:20 pm

Many of the books I would've suggested have already been mentioned. The only ones I would add are Khenpo Karthar Rinpoche's Dharma Paths and Kyabjé Bokar Rinpoche's Meditation: Advice to Beginners.

Really anything written by Bokar Rinpoche is taught in such a way that it's accessible to everyone from the total beginner to the most seasoned practitioner.

Many of his works are out of print, but can be found online in places like Scribd: http://www.scribd.com/doc/133140786/Bok ... -Beginners
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"The Sutras, Tantras, and Philosophical Scriptures are great in number. However life is short, and intelligence is limited, so it's hard to cover them completely. You may know a lot, but if you don't put it into practice, it's like dying of thirst on the shore of a great lake. Likewise, a common corpse is found in the bed of a great scholar." ~ Karma Chagme

དྲིན་ཆེན་རྩ་བའི་བླ་མ་སྐྱབས་རྗེ་མགར་ཆེན་ཁྲི་སྤྲུལ་རིན་པོ་ཆེ་ཁྱེད་མཁྱེན་ནོ།།
རྗེ་བཙུན་བླ་མ་མཁས་གྲུབ་ཀརྨ་ཆགས་མེད་མཁྱེན་ནོ། ཀརྨ་པ་མཁྱེན་ནོཿ

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dharmagoat
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Re: Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

Post by dharmagoat » Mon Nov 04, 2013 12:22 am

I found Gampopa's "Jewel Ornament of Liberation" to be a good introductory text for those wanting to acquaint themselves with the foundations of Kagyu practice without the introductory preamble.

Punya
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Re: Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

Post by Punya » Mon Nov 04, 2013 4:01 am

dharmagoat wrote:I found Gampopa's "Jewel Ornament of Liberation" to be a good introductory text for those wanting to acquaint themselves with the foundations of Kagyu practice without the introductory preamble.
There is a great commentary by Thrangu Rinpoche. :twothumbsup:
Just as the trunk of an ordinary tree
Lying in the forests of the Malaya mountains
Absorbs the perfume of sandal from the moist leaves and branches
So you come to resemble who whomever you follow.

~Words of My Perfect Teacher

ylee111
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Re: Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

Post by ylee111 » Sat Dec 14, 2013 5:19 pm

What's a good book on the practices of the Drukpa lineage?

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Grigoris
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Re: Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

Post by Grigoris » Sat Dec 14, 2013 5:58 pm

dharmagoat wrote:I found Gampopa's "Jewel Ornament of Liberation" to be a good introductory text for those wanting to acquaint themselves with the foundations of Kagyu practice without the introductory preamble.
This one here. The bible of Kagyu practice.
"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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futerko
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Re: Introductory Book on Tibetan Buddhism - especially Kagyu

Post by futerko » Sat Dec 14, 2013 6:09 pm

Sherab Dorje wrote:
dharmagoat wrote:I found Gampopa's "Jewel Ornament of Liberation" to be a good introductory text for those wanting to acquaint themselves with the foundations of Kagyu practice without the introductory preamble.
This one here. The bible of Kagyu practice.
http://www.amnyitrulchung.org/teachings ... mplete.pdf
we cannot get rid of God because we still believe in grammar - Nietzsche

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