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Don't understand the duality physical body and Mind

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Hello!

I am a Vipassana practicioner and I love martial arts, a bit of "more physical yoga", etc. I have a question about the cultivation of the physical body or not. As I see it for Yoga this is important, practice your Asanas, keep a good, strong and healthy body is an important part of the spiritual path. Whitout forgetting that is temporary and not attaching to it too much, of course.

While other practices practically discard the body, I suppose Buddism and Zen, etc (please correct me if wrong), meditate, cultivate Love and be conscient during any activity you do. The body is temporary, as such we feed it in order to barely survive and do whatever we have to do here. Just having the minimum impact in the world body-wise. The important is our mental estate and internal peace achieved through meditation practices such as mindfullness, etc.

I believe Vipassana (jnana yoga) is a bit on the middle, you go through your physical body knowing it corresponds to your mind-body, but physical exercises or other yoga types are not precisely encouraged, moreover are discouraged (this is what I learn from Goenkaji who said it can confuse you to do too many things, like having each leg in a diffrent boat). But I see myself attracted to martial arts and asana yoga too while loving vipassana.

Then I read about rainbow bodies, how some people just cultivate the mind-body, such as Ramana Maharshi, while others want to raise the vibration of the whole physical body.

How different are both? I am totally confused on this topic, please help me!
Thanks a lot emoticon

RE: Don't understand the duality physical body and Mind
Answer
7/17/20 5:00 AM as a reply to Honinbo.
As far as I understand, rainbow body just means that you have reached the level of realization that when you die, the body dissolves into a rainbow light and leaves nothing to bury. I haven't heard of anyone attaining that outside of very specific contexts, and frankly I don't know what to believe. 

I find that yoga helps me to stay healthy both physically and mentally, and it helps me to focus in meditation. I see no conflict between doing that and doing vipassana. On the contrary, I wouldn't be able to do vipassana without the yoga. If you love yoga and martial arts, then I'd say go for it.

Ultimately, it is all just manifestations of the source. I see no point in discarding the body. It is temporary, sure, but so is the mind as we know it. 

RE: Don't understand the duality physical body and Mind
Answer
7/17/20 6:13 AM as a reply to Honinbo.
Honinbo:
Then I read about rainbow bodies, how some people just cultivate the mind-body, such as Ramana Maharshi, while others want to raise the vibration of the whole physical body. How different are both? 

Regarding the vibration of the whole physical body, in Taoist practices they have 4 levels of vibrations that roughly corresponds with the first 4 jhanas (or perhaps J1 subjhana 1 to 4, as in Daniel Ingram's fractal description). It's a mixed vipassana-samatha practice, though more inclined to concentration practice.

Regarding rainbow body, it's what Linda says. Then you have the Yin Shen (incorporeal body cultivation) and Yang Shen practices (like Buddhist bi-location but supposedly more stable, a corporeal body ... like in Jesus' resurrection... there's a list with 13 mythical taoists sages that achieved that...)

RE: Don't understand the duality physical body and Mind
Answer
7/17/20 10:13 AM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Thanks a lot. Actually I should have omitted the rainbow body comment as it's something I don't really know anything (maybe I could have even said something silly).

I am interested in the cultivation or not of the physical body from the different disciplines.

Yes, yoga is great, I just don't understand the approach of discarding the body more than its mere survival opposed to yoga, etc.

Thanks!

RE: Don't understand the duality physical body and Mind
Answer
7/17/20 10:15 AM as a reply to Pepe.
Thank you! I will investigate about the Taoist classification, I had no idea.

RE: Don't understand the duality physical body and Mind
Answer
7/17/20 7:35 PM as a reply to Honinbo.
Honinbo:
Hello!

I am a Vipassana practicioner and I love martial arts, a bit of "more physical yoga", etc. I have a question about the cultivation of the physical body or not. 

...

How different are both? I am totally confused on this topic, please help me!
Thanks a lot emoticon

I think of Buddhism as the cultivation of the mind, and you should not ignore the body in the cultivation of the mind because the brain is part of the body and is affected by the body through hormones, biochemical fuels, nutrients, and other biochemical factors. The brain responds to sex hormones and stress hormones, it requires energy, oxygen and nutrients to function etc. etc.

I consder diet, and exercise, and relaxation as part of my practice, along with meditation and mindfuilness.

I do relaxation exercises before sitting meditating because if I start in a relaxed state of mind I get a much more consistent experience meditating.

I use physical relaxation exercises that involve momement, as well as mental relaxation exercises that I do sitting or lying down.

I find that diet can influence my mood more than meditation ... and I practice the jhanas. How can that be? Because I cannot enter the jhanas if my brain does not have the correct nutritional factors to produce bliss.

It is similar with exercise. If my mind is turbulent, a few minutes of physical relaxation exercises can do more to calm my mind than an hour of meditation.

Usually by the end of my routine of physical and mental relaxation exercises I am ready to immediately enter the jhanas. I can feel the distinct transation and often hear a tone at the same instant.  I continue the relaxation for a few minutes to reinforce this state then I can get up and enter the jhanas. And in this relaxed state is much easier to let go of cravings and aversions, in fact most unpleasant emotions are absent when I am in it.

If I don't have the diet and exercise components of my practice right, meditation is a waste of time, it accomplishes nothing except to show me the imporance of diet and exercise.



https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.036.than.html
"I thought: 'I recall once, when my father the Sakyan was working, and I was sitting in the cool shade of a rose-apple tree, then — quite secluded from sensuality, secluded from unskillful mental qualities — I entered & remained in the first jhana: rapture & pleasure born from seclusion, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation. Could that be the path to Awakening?' Then following on that memory came the realization: 'That is the path to Awakening.' I thought: 'So why am I afraid of that pleasure that has nothing to do with sensuality, nothing to do with unskillful mental qualities?' I thought: 'I am no longer afraid of that pleasure that has nothing to do with sensuality, nothing to do with unskillful mental qualities, but that pleasure is not easy to achieve with a body so extremely emaciated. Suppose I were to take some solid food: some rice & porridge.' So I took some solid food: some rice & porridge. 

RE: Don't understand the duality physical body and Mind
Answer
7/18/20 12:22 AM as a reply to Honinbo.
Your being is physical. There is however spiritual part which acts as interface between body and actual experiencer which is universe itself.

In Buddhism you are developing physical body, not spiritual. And as for spiritual... you take it and throw in to Nibbana, all of it, not matter what it is and where it is from. If anyone miss it then you take them and throw in to Nibbana as well. No sentiments.

Buddha:
Seeking but not finding the house builder,
I hurried through the round of many births:
Painful is birth ever and again.

O house builder, you have been seen;
You shall not build the house again.
Your rafters have been broken up,
Your ridgepole is demolished too.

My mind has now attained the unformed Nibbâna
And reached the end of every sort of craving.

Usually people just deconstruct their egos and do some cleaning up in their own bodies. It is already quite tricky but in this scope there is no need to go through crazy practices like ascetism. By going through process of insight your body will gradularly learn (with hints from other people who got through this process) what to generally do and you will be fine.

Only when you want to become the next supreme Nirmanakayathen then you need to step up the game and be sure you actually know everything about everything that there is to know. On this rather lonely path there is no relying on taking anything on word value and you actually need to develop all practices from scratch and check everything yourself. Thus it requires rather stringent practice regimen like the one Gautama Buddha had.

RE: Don't understand the duality physical body and Mind
Answer
7/21/20 5:05 AM as a reply to Ni Nurta.
Thanks a lot, very insightful!

RE: Don't understand the duality physical body and Mind
Answer
7/21/20 5:06 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Thank you! I always felt and feel very compelled to train my body together with my spiritual practices, in the end are the same.

RE: Don't understand the duality physical body and Mind
Answer
7/21/20 5:58 AM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
As far as I understand, rainbow body just means that you have reached the level of realization that when you die, the body dissolves into a rainbow light and leaves nothing to bury. I haven't heard of anyone attaining that outside of very specific contexts, and frankly I don't know what to believe. 

I find that yoga helps me to stay healthy both physically and mentally, and it helps me to focus in meditation. I see no conflict between doing that and doing vipassana. On the contrary, I wouldn't be able to do vipassana without the yoga. If you love yoga and martial arts, then I'd say go for it.

Ultimately, it is all just manifestations of the source. I see no point in discarding the body. It is temporary, sure, but so is the mind as we know it. 

On rainbow body, what you posted is not exactly correct although commonly understood that way, I posted in 2013:

http://awakeningtoreality.blogspot.com/2013/03/rainbow-body-and-thusness-advice-to-me.html


Mar17Rainbow Body and Thusness's Advice to MeAlso see: Color, Sound, Lights and Rays
Dzogchen vs Advaita, Conventional and Ultimate Truth
Clarifications on Dharmakaya and Basis by Loppön Namdrol/Malcolm 
Clarifications on the Term "Rigpa" 


In my Facebook group "Dharma Connection" there happens to be many Dzogchen practitioners around so I posted this as it may interest them as I think it may also interest you as a reader. I've also posted some comments by Thusness below. (note: Thusness is not a Dzogchen practitioner so whatever he said need not be indicative of Dzogchen, just the practice and experience between us)
Rainbow Body Might Not Be What You Think It Is!

Since there's lots of Dzogchen practitioners, thought it might be interesting to share this piece of info.

Malcolm: "KDL went though all four visions to the end. He told me this personally. Not only me, but others. He did realize rainbow body. Rainbow body, in Dzogchen, does not mean that your body disappears. This is a huge misconception....it is stupidly simple -- once you reach the end of the fourth vision, everything is a display of the five lights, as it is put in the classical text earth, rocks, mountains and cliffs vanish and instead one sees only the five pure lights.....In other words, rainbow body in essence is actually a realization...."

...

"No, but I have heard (from ChNN among others) that the disappearance of the body is not necessarily a sign of the body of light.

Hindus also gain control over the four elements, also Arhats can gain control over the four elements. Gaining control over the four elements is mundane siddhi, it is not excellent siddhi, nor is it reserved for Vajrayana and Dzogchen people. However, if someone has not studied in detail, they might think that many mundane  siddhis are profound. So yes, what I am telling you is that I do not consider the so called rainbow body to much more than a display of mundane siddhi to create faith.

I am glad you have faith in the teachings, but as I said, I do not derive my faith in the teachings through illusions and phantasmagoria.

N"

....

p.s. with regards to KDL, who is also Malcolm's teacher (he passed away in 2006) and Malcolm has said before that KDL is a fully awakened Buddha,

http://tibetanaltar.blogspot.com.au/2009/10/terton-kunzang-dechen-lingpa-moving.html

"Later when Rinpoche was relaxing in a lawn chair, he said to a few students gathered around him: "You don't realize this, but I am actually Guru Rinpoche and you are his twenty-five disciples. I have reached the stage of exhaustion of phenomena (cho nyi zepa). In truth there is for me no form, no sensation, no perception, no karmic formation, no consciousness, no form, no smell, no sense consciousness or object of sense consciousness and so forth; there is no self or other and no distinction of 'Buddhas' and 'sentient beings'; everything remains in the naturally perfect state of pure equality. From the depths of my heart I wish there were some way you could all be made to understand the truth in this, but you do not see it."

Then Rinpoche went silent and tears fell from his eyes."

Also, maybe not many of you here knows this - Malcolm (Loppon Namdrol) was asked to teach Dzogchen by KDL but he refused.

(Update: The part on malcolm refusing to teach dzogchen is outdated information, as I have learnt that he has recently started teaching and has a small sangha now)

Also, Chogyal Namkhai Norbu writes in his book "Dzogchen Teachings"


It is through this Tsal Energy that our manifestation of pure and impure vision, and our particular karmic vision, arises. We are now human beings, and we have human vision. We perceive our environment dualistically,  splitting  it  into  an  apparent  reality  of  a  perceiving  subject separated from a world of external objects. But in fact everything we perceive is like the rainbow lights, which have their source in the rock crystal when it is struck by the sun’s rays. If we see a five-colored rainbow, this means that we perceive the pure dimension, pure vision. When the essence of the elements combines together with our karma,then  the  elements  manifest  on  the  material  level,  creating  impure  vision. Thus, the source of karmic vision is this aspect of Energy known as Tsal; but this same Tsal Energy, through certain practices particular to the Dzogchen teaching, such as Thödgal and Yangti, gives us the possibility of reintegrating our material existence, and of finally realizing the Rainbow Body.
  

Thusness said to me:

"As I suspected (thumbs up) I mean the rainbow body. That can only be done after realization of twofold emptiness and intensity of luminosity into the three states (waking, dreaming, deep sleep)... you are doing pretty well. The integration has been progressing well of the non-dual bliss into your deep sleep state, in view of the short period after your realization of anatta. The inner core must completely disappear and the intensity of luminosity must heighten... Sensations will become transparent and crystal sharp clear.

At present the core center is gone... You write too much and have too little rest. Your mind must have enough time to rest in non-conceptuality of the 6 entries and exits. Otherwise it will not be easy for you to penetrate further. After realizing the twofold emptying there is no more boundaries between mind, appearances and apparent objects and experience becomes seamless... All is mind or this integrated activity. Then we should actualize and integrate this realization.

In touching, both subject and object are both emptied and deconstructed into a single activity of touch and the intensity of luminous clarity must be strong... is it strong now? Or just like passing thoughts with no intensity.
Now penetration of the 3 states is only supported by the strength of your view and realization, not by the intensity of your non-conceptual experience.

"In essence rainbow body is a realization..." Maybe actualization of realization (would be better), in essence it is an actualized state."


my comment: Dzogchen practitioners use the term 'Realization' differently than I and Thusness, 'Realization' could mean something like full actualization or Buddhahood for them and not just an initial insight/recognition/experience.

Also what Thusness said here may be unrelated to Dzogchen rainbow body and is just a personal advise.
Update: 

Someone wrote: 

"I believe Malcolm Smith, Many texts state the "physical body reverts to the essence of the elements as rainbow light and disapears." Also there is a great deal of writing by many such as Longchenpa that describe the difference between the "vanishment of the physical body" between trekchod, rainbow body as "jalus" and "phowa chenpo" the Great Transfer. This is the goofiest of Malcolm's posts that I have ever read... Am I missing something?"

Malcolm replied: 

"Rainbow body where the body shrinks and disappears is a sign of incompletely finishing the fourth vision in this life."Labels: All is MindAnattaDzogchenEmptinessLopon MalcolmLuminosityNamdrolNon Dual | 

RE: Don't understand the duality physical body and Mind
Answer
7/21/20 5:47 AM as a reply to An Eternal Now.
Arcaya Malcolm will be leading an online dzogchen teaching retreat soon which Thusness and I are attending http://awakeningtoreality.blogspot.com/2020/07/dzogchen-retreat-with-arcaya-malcolm.html

RE: Don't understand the duality physical body and Mind
Answer
7/21/20 5:53 AM as a reply to Honinbo.
My teacher John Tan/Thusness integrates ashtanga yoga with vipassana in his practice. He finds it very important

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=1685089494882158&set=a.1685089568215484&type=3

Also when i studied in brisbane australia, the soto zen teacher, i often visit has a master (zen master hogen yamata) who lives in byron bay that also integrates his zen practice (anatta and total exertion) with yoga