Saturday, 30 August 2008
The intellect cannot see that which is beyond conceptual mind,
and you will never realize that which is uncreated through
created dharmas. If you whish to attain or realize that which is
beyond the intellect and is uncreated, then scrutinize your mind
and strip awareness naked.
Here come the six words of Advice from Tilopa:
Let go of what has passed
let go of what may come
let go of what is happening now.
Don´t try to figure anything out
don´t try to make anything happen
Relax, right now, and rest.
If we can put this essential teaching into practice,
we are in the mahamudra path.
Mahamudra is not about memorizing, analizing, meditating (created meditation).
Mahamudra is about relaxing, seeing the nature of mind, and resting in that.
Simple but no that easy.
As you can see, this six points of advice are very similar to Dzogchen and Zen.
If you can do that, there is no problem calling that mahamudra, dzogchen or Zen.
If you can not do that, then you need other practices which will lead you up to this.
So we should only be concerned about being able to see the nature of mind.
If we can do that by ourselves, let´s do it.
If we cannot, then let´s look for somebody who can help us.
Very simple, provided that we are not taken by arrogance or fanatism.
You can know intellectually how to put a rocket on the moon, but that is not the same as being able to physically put it there.
These instructions are very condensed and simple, but only a few can take them into practice, and that is why the wish-fullfilling gem of mahamudra practice requires discipline, humility and the intelligence to look for help from the qualified masters.
So brother, let´s keep on practicing so we can call ourselves mahamudra practitioners, and not mahamudra bluffers.
An authentic portrait of the Middle Way.
From the standpoint of the truth that´s genuine,
there are no ghosts, there are not even buddhas,
no meditator and no meditated,
no paths and levels traveled and no signs,
and no fruition bodies and no wisdoms,
and therefore there is no nirvana there,
just designations using names and statements.
All animate, inanimate -the three realms,
unborn and nonexistent from the outset,
no base to rest on, do not coemerge,
there is no karmic act, no maturation,
so even the name "samsara" does not exist.
That´s the way these are in the final picture,
but oh, if sentient beings did not exist,
what would the buddhas of the three times all come from?
Since fruition with no cause- impossible!
So the standpoint of the truth that´s superficial
is samsara´s wheel, nirvana past all grief.
It all exists, that´s the Sage´s teaching.
Then what exists appearing to be things,
and their nonexistence, reality that´s empty,
are essentially inseparable, one taste,
and therefore there is neither self-awareness
nor awareness of what´s other anywhere.
All of this a union vast and spacious,
and all those skilled in realizing this
do not see consciousness, they see pure wisdom,
do not see sentient beings, they see buddhas,
don´t see phenomena, they see their essence,
and out of this compassion just emerges.
Retention, powers,fearlessness and all,
the qualities embodied by a buddha,
just come as if you had a wishing jewel-
This is what I, the yogui, have realized.
Friday, 29 August 2008
Once you know how to look at the quiet mind, you can start looking at the mind within occurrence.
It is more difficult to SEE the nature of thoughts and appearances, just because usually we get distracted when they occur, we follow them and cling to them.
That is why in the mahamudra system, the practitioner usually starts developing Shamata (Shine), and then tries to see the nature of the mind at rest. This is a preliminary practice.
Remaining in a state of stillness, we let thoughts appear, and we just observe their arising, remaining and vanishing.
This is easy to say, but not to do.
When we have seen the nature of thoughts, we can try with emotions and to end up with appearances.
If you check any of the mahamudra manuals like Moonlight of mahamudra or Clarifying the Natural state, you can find precise instructions on how to proceed.
This is only a hint in the air, but you must PRACTICE yourself.
Nobody will do it for yourself. They can help you, but no more.
Good luck with your practice.
Tuesday, 26 August 2008
Now it´s over,
No more coming,
no more going.
as they appear.
empty but do keep appearing.
Like a snake
now I know you.
You told me,
a long time ago:
Now is the time for
non-meditation and non-distraction.
Sunday, 24 August 2008
The very essence of Mind, Mahamudra, the One Sufficient Path.
Homage to the genuine gurus.
The mahamudra of Gampopa, the one sufficient Path, has three sections:
1) To have a decisive Understanding about the True Nature.
2) The introduction to the Fundamental Character, and
3) Training on the Path os Suchness.
To have a decisive Understanding about the true Nature
Mahamudra has no causes
Mahamudra has no conditions
Mahamudra has no methods
Mahamudra has no path
Mahamudra has no result
The introduction to the Fundamental Character
Mahamudra has no causes, and yet faith and devotion are the causes of Mahamudra.
Mahamudra has no conditions, and yet genuine gurus are the conditions for Mahamudra.
Mahamudra has no methods, and yet uncontrived mind is the method of Mahamudra.
Mahamudra has no path, and yet undistracted mind is the path of Mahamudra.
Mahamudra has no result, and yet the mind liberated into dharmata is the result of Mahamudra.
Training on the Path of Suchness
As the preliminary practice, meditate on guru yoga with faith, devotion, and respect, three times during the day and three times at night.
As the main practice, rest within the state of uncontrived mind with undistracted recognition.
As the conclusion, recognize whatever appears as your own mind and train your awareness with skill.
Relying upon the sequential arising of experiences, exert yourself in meditation until conceptual mind is exhausted.
There ara two ways in which experiences arise: as unfavorable experiences and as favorable experiences.
As for the first: All unfavorable experiences - whatever they are, such as dullness, agitation, illness, fear, fright, or doubt- arise from your meditation. Therefore , recognize them to be experiences. Without abandoning them, meditate, taking those very things as the object of your view and meditation.
As for favorable experiences:
First, the experience of the mind abiding arises.
Based on that, the experience of the essence, emptiness arises.
Based upon that, the experience of attaining realization arises.
Based upon that, the experience of turning away from attachment arises.
With that sequential arising of experiences, you should exert yourself in practice without any complacency.
The mind´s merely abiding at first is not sufficient- you must meditate in order to see the essence.
Merely seeing the essence is not sufficient- you must meditate in order to attain realization.
Merely attaining realization is not sufficient- you must meditate in order to turn away from attachment.
Merely turning away from attachment is not sufficient- you must meditate so that, through the liberation of conceptual mind into dharmata, conceptual mind is exhausted, phenomena are exhausted, and you awaken.
This completes The very Essence of Mind, Mahamudra, the one sufficient Path
From beginningless time,
you have never been there.
You have tricked me,
and I´ve fooled myself.
You always told me I was "me",
and I always trusted you.
But now the light is on,
and the buzz is off.
Yes, "you" are "me",
and I am not "I".
Looking behind the words,
you will find emptiness.
Looking behind emptiness,
you will find lucidity.
Mahamudra is Zen.
Zen is Dzogchen.
for only one taste.
Let them debate,
you just rest naturally.
Only One word:
Saturday, 23 August 2008
Usually we like pleasure and dislike pain or suffering.
If we take a closer look at pleasure, we find out that it is always dependent on a cause, and it is impermanent. If we zoom in, we discover that this SENSATION called pleasure is EMPTY, it has no intrinsic nature of its own, it is not self-existing.
When our confused state of consciousness makes itself unbearable, we try to escape from it trough a CHANGE. We erroneusly think that changing the external situation, we can escape confusion and the anxiety that goes along with it. And if changing the external set up is not possible, we use our FANTASY to break free in our minds.
The truth is that only FACING reality, can we TRASCEND confusion and turn it into WISDOM.
Only LOOKING DIRECTLY at the NATURE of APPEARANCES of confusion and axiety, can wisdom awaken.
Looking closer to the sensation of pain and suffering, we find that has the same nature as pleasure: it is EMPTY.
Pleasure and pain are two heads of CERBERUS, being the third stupor.
Clinging, rejection and indifference, the THREE POISONS we find in the axis of the wheel of life.
Unless we defeat this three headed infernal dog, we won´t be able to come out of the hell of confused mind.
In the mahamudra system, we have three antidotes against these three poisons:
1- Looking at the nature of mind
2- Looking at the nature of thought
3- Looking at the nature of appearances
If we practice correctly, the master will point out to us the nature of mind, thought and appearances, and we will be able to SEE it.
The only thing a genuine master can do is to prepare the practitioner for the pointing out instructions, and give them to him at the proper time so he can see the nature of mind.
Without FAITH in the mahamudra system (or ZEN, Dzogchen...) and TRUST in the master, it is not possible to SEE DIRECTLY the NATURE OF MIND.
So, we should make sure that we put our heart into whatever we do, specially when practicing Dharma, or we will never be able to experience the GREAT BLISS of Realization, which tracends pleasure, pain and stupor.
Mahamudra means nondual awareness.
Its three aspects are
Essence, nature and characteristics.
Essence means the emptiness
of arising, ceasing or conceiving.
Nature means unobstructed lucidity.
Characteristics mean the diverse appearances
on the levels of samsara and nirvana.
Je Phagmo Drubpa
Thursday, 21 August 2008
The mahamudra system was designed for people willing to learn from a master.
Usually, if you want to learn FAST about any subject, you have to find an expert, and learn from him. That will save you a lot of time and effort, provided that you TRUST him and put into practice his advice.
One of the preliminary practices of mahamudra is GURU YOGA, which is a powerful tool to speed up your progress. The essence of guru yoga is seeing your master as the enlightened mind, and fusing your mind with him. In fact, there is no difference between the nature of your mind and the nature of his mind; they are one and the same: EMPTY CLARITY.
Practicing guru yoga correctly, you will get some experiences of BLISS, CLARITY and NON-THOUGHT, that usually it would take you longer to experience if you didn´t have a master.
Guru yoga does not mean becoming a slave of a despot.
The key point is FINDING and TRUSTING a QUALIFIED MASTER.
Most of us fear surrendering ourselves to somebody else. But we shouldn´t. We should fear surrendering ourselves to a non qualified master.
My personal experience has proved me that if I ´m not very wise, and my motivation is not clean, then I end up trusting the wrong "pseudomasters". When my motivation gets cleaner (bodhichitta), then I can see the real face of all this pseudomasters, and I can go away from them, without blaming them, because it was my dirty motivation and ignorance that didn´t let me see who they really are.
Once you detach yourself from the wrong motivation, you will find the qualified masters. So, it is very important to develop a good MOTIVATION (BODHICHITTA) in order to find a qualified master.
When climbing a dangerous unknown peak, it is smart to join a competent expedition, with trustworthy guides. To reach the MAHAMUDRA PEAK, you must join the MAHAMUDRA LINEAGE. In doing so, you will avoid many sidetracks and flaws that will come up with your practice.
That is why it is very important to PRAY asking for help from the lineage masters. That is an exercise of humility, because you admit that you need some help from qualified guides. Your Ego usually doesn´t like to admit his incompetence, and praying becomes an antidote against his "power", provided that you have a good motivation like bodhichitta.
Once you become a member of the lineage, praying can be used as an means of COMPASSION, wishing that all sentient beings become free of suffering.
Therefore, my advice would be: CHECK YOUR MOTIVATION and LOOK FOR A QUALIFIED MASTER who can help you to SEE THE NATURE OF MIND.
That is the key of a successful practice.
Great Vajradhara, Tilo, Naro, Marpa, Mila, Gampopa, Karmapa,
masters of the profound path of Mahamudra.
I supplicate you, the Kagyu gurus.
I hold your lineage; grant your blessings so that I´ll follow your example.
Revulsion is the foot of meditation, as is taught.
To this meditator who is not attached to food and wealth,
who cuts the ties to this life,
Grant your blessings so that I have no desire for honor and gain.
Devotion is the head of meditation, as is taught.
The guru opens the gate to the treasury of oral instructions.
To this meditator who continually supplicates the guru,
Grant your blessings so that genuine devotion is born in me.
Awareness is the body of meditation, as is taught.
Whatever arises is fresh- the essence of realization.
To this meditator who rests simply without altering it,
Grant your blessings so that my meditation is free from conception.
The essence of thoughts is dharmakaya, as is taught.
Nothing whatever but everything arises from it.
To this meditator who arises in unceasing play,
Grant your blessings so that I realize the inseparability of samsara and nirvana.
Through all my births may I not be separated from the perfect guru
and so enjoy the splendor of dharma.
Perfecting the virtues of the paths and bhumis,
may I speedily attain the state of Vajradhara.
If there was a beginning,
there should be an end.
If there is no beginning,
there can´t be an end.
Natural Mind is Unborn,
therefore it can´t die.
Ego has a beginning,
therefore it cames to an end.
Marpa had a beginning,
so it has come to an end.
Labeling that which can´t be labeled,
for the sake of sentient beings.
From now on call me Hui Neng.
Hui Neng had a beginning,
so it will come to an end.
Just masks for the unnamed,
Oh Tilopa, you are not Tilopa;
they call you Tilopa.
What an old tricker you are.
You got me on your net from the Beginning.
Now this is the End of the Beginning.
Wednesday, 20 August 2008
in the Middle Way.
are your emissaries.
The Great Seal,
Primordial Wisdom Mind.
May you grant me
ordinary and extraordinary.
Tilopa, my old friend,
listen to this beggar,
and accord him your treasure.
Welcome to this virtual space.
My nickname is Marpa, as a hommage to the tibetan master who introduced the Mahamudra System in Tibet, and my wish is to help you in the practice of this powerful meditation system.
In this cave you can find the wish fulfilling gem.
Some of you will have to put quite a lot of effort in your practice of this old and powerful system of buddhist meditation. For others more fortunate, with less karmic obstacles, you will jump from the preliminary practices to the main mahamudra practice and skip many stages. That depends on what kind of practitioner you are (with sharp skills, medium, or low). Some of you will have to go through many years of practice following the manuals which you will find if you look attentively for them in the links provided.
The goal of Mahamudra is allowing you to SEE DIRECTLY the Nature of Mind, and once you´ve done that, establish yourself on this seeing, also called RIGPA.
Probably many of you are already familiar with buddhism, so in this virtual cave we will go to the essence of the Teachings, and we will adapt them to the western context in which we live.
My main objective is helping you to CONNECT with the MAHAMUDRA LINEAGE. Once you come close to it, things become easier, because you are pushed by the strength of many advanced practitioners, and experiences flow out spontaneously and you can get realizations.
I would recommend to those of you interested in following this system, to get a transmission of some of the many Mahamudra manuals available. In my case, I follow the manual by Dakpo Tashi Namgyal : Moonlight of Mahamudra.
I received the transmission for the study and practice of this text a few years ago, and I complement it with other mahamudra manuals like Clarifying the Natural State, from the same author, and many other texts mainly written by Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche.
Anyway, after some practice, you will see that things become simple and natural, like ordinary mind, so your main concern must be to understand this system and to practice it continuously.
One big advantage of this system, is that you can meditate without abandoning your responsibilities, and transform ordinary life into practice. This is what many of the lineage holders in the past have done, and I do it myself, so I can say that it is possible provided that there is FAITH in the efficacy of this System, and TRUST in the LINEAGE of realized masters.
Feel free to leave comments on the posts: they can be useful to other practitioners.
If you have more specific questions regarding practice and experiences, please feel free to contact me to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
I hope you enjoy your practice, brother.