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What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?

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What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? Zyndo Zyhion 1/1/14 9:51 AM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks 1/1/14 3:09 PM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? Zyndo Zyhion 1/2/14 3:33 AM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? Tom Tom 1/1/14 6:21 PM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? Zyndo Zyhion 1/2/14 4:28 AM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? Tom Tom 1/2/14 10:42 PM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks 1/1/14 10:37 PM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? Zyndo Zyhion 1/2/14 4:17 AM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks 1/2/14 9:55 AM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? (D Z) Dhru Val 1/1/14 2:21 PM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? Chris M 1/3/14 4:26 AM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? (D Z) Dhru Val 1/4/14 11:46 PM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? Tom Tom 1/1/14 5:31 PM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? T DC 1/2/14 2:49 PM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks 1/2/14 4:39 PM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? Zyndo Zyhion 1/3/14 8:20 AM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks 1/3/14 4:01 PM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks 1/3/14 6:48 PM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? Psi 1/4/14 12:50 AM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks 1/4/14 7:40 AM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? Psi 1/5/14 12:55 AM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? Zyndo Zyhion 1/4/14 5:04 AM
RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa? Banned For waht? 1/4/14 7:09 AM
What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
nirvana rigpa
Answer
1/1/14 9:51 AM
Greetings.

I have annoyed quite a few faith driven students at Namhai Norbhu's retreats in Australia.
Asking questions about difference between pure awareness and primordial awareness/rigpa. It turns out its just like Namkhai Norbu says when he would repeatedly say to the gathering over the ten days teachings, (I did 2 of those at the Australian Namgyalgar Centre) that no one is recognising Rigpa, he actually meant it quite literally. The notion that Rigpa is available because it is our primordial nature, is stretched, to say the least.

I have had this debate with a friend. who leans toward the books that seem to talk about Dzogchen's availability, books like 'Carefree Dignity', by Tsoknyi Rinpoche and also great books by Namkhai Norbu, like the 'Crystal and the Way of Light' and 'Dzogchen: the Self Perfected State', the problem is I these books are coming from the ultimate perspective, of our very essential nature. There is a tendency in Dzogchen teachings to start from the top and then move down to the relative, so in these pointing outs or texts that speak of the recognition of the primordial, come from the position of speaking to and from the root of our Omniscient Buddha Nature.
So because Rigpa is our nature, from an ultimate perspective, it is ultimately available. This dilemma is talked about really clearly in 'Stilling the Mind', by Wallace. As you can see near the beginning of the text, one of the main themes of the text is stated, which is why don't people recognise Rigpa?
This teaching is a Terma and was give in the realms of the Samboghaykaya, "Then Bodhisattva Faculty of Wisdom rose from his seat and asked the Bhagavan, "O Teacher, Bhagavan, you appear as the natural radiance of the sugatagarbha. I, Faculty of Wisdom, appear as the natural radiance wisdom. Vajra of Awareness appears as the natural radiance of awareness. This assembly of male and female bodhisattvas appear as the eight kinds of consciousness, together with the mental factors. But if this is so, we should appear in that way to all beings of the three realms, Therefore, why do they carry on in the midst of the delusive appearances of joys, sorrows, friends, and enemies in the three realms of existence, where miseries occur and pure appearances do not? Teacher, please explain!" (p.25).
Being or Presence and the non-dual stabilisation of it (by this I mean path) or the stabilisation of the the substrate awareness, (by this I mean Jhana) is not rigpa! Alan Wallace said, and Sogyal Rinpoche agreed with him, when he sent him a letter covering these points.
Rigpa takes, either Shamatha Jhana or at least a Path to be recognised. This becomes clear, in the book, 'Stilling the Mind,' which is a commentary on Dudjom Lingpa's text Vajra Essence. Also as Wallace explains, Path doesn't necessarily dispose one to the realisation of Rigpa, but is one of the requirements for its recognition. One interesting point is that the Arhat, when entering pari-nirvana, has their consciousness destroyed, and at that point all the remains is primordial awareness, or rigpa awareness.

I sort of understand what his saying but its a bit like quantum physics, the clarity of the ideas aren't held clearly enough in my head to explain. I tried to cover some points to entice you to listen to the following talks. They are given during a retreat, so a portion of the 1st talk is a guided meditations. These talks cover clarification on the difference between Nirvana and Rigpa, and also on the state of consciousness of Jhana and where it resides in relation to the other states.

This talk starts 1:02 mins in: Meditation and Reflections on Equanimity (and a very interesting “deep water” question)

A follow up lecture on the first topic, on the Nirvana and Rigpa and the difference between the two:
A Followup to Thursday’s Nirvana/Rigpa Answer. A Jewel of a Lecture.

Thoughts? On these talks?

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/1/14 3:09 PM as a reply to Zyndo Zyhion.
Hi Neem,

It's nice to read you again.

(...) that no one is recognising Rigpa, he actually meant it quite literally. The notion that Rigpa is available because it is our primordial nature, is stretched, to say the least.


First, I didn't watch your links.

I am replying just from my experience, which is not omniscient and has ongoing-learning, too.

From my limited experience, I understand that the common ancestor of sentience is that initial primary consciousness, a dhamma that comes into being in a universe of nothing (gradientlessness) or even a universe with forms (gradients, like cream roiling in coffee) but which forms are yet devoid of apparent sentience. Then, one day, like a newly evolved plant, an interaction occurs in the gradient and consciousness occurs, a arising form among many, an arising distinction among many arisings due to gradients.

That consciousness is the dhamma of continually "knowing", knowing existence, awareness of being aware.

So it inherently has love of being and awareness by knowing/detecting dhammas which are not apparently aware, and has a natural conceit for being what it is: aware of being, awareness of awareness (sentience) and awareness of non-sentient stuff.

And so it is very hard to be willing to cease. Since my first cessation experience, I know the sweetness of awareness (despite the terror/foolish harm that awareness can witness/cause, too) and the brevity/wonder of being. Knowing cessation and knowing some of the sweetness and horrors of being, I see that I actually resist cessation ~ hope to create/experience more sweetness (via the sanity of the brahmaviharas or, maybe more accessibly, the golden rule) ~ and I resist ultimate or further experience of nibbana. I think this is a natural reaction and illustrated in the buddhist meditation "fetter" model.

[edited for brevity]

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/1/14 2:21 PM as a reply to Zyndo Zyhion.
I have been listening to Allan Wallace, and got a direct initiation from Norbu after talking to his students. Some thoughts...

Rigpa = recognition of primordial awareness by primordial awareness.

Primordial awareness = a sort of 'awareness' that is implicit in perception, and not separate from perception. So for eg. The very fact that you see something is primordial awareness.

It isn't really a thing in its own right. But is implicit in form. This most subtle level of perception is 'free from extremes' (i.e. it precedes clinging and aversion). So it is 'empty' as well.


Being or Presence and the non-dual stabilisation of it (by this I mean path) or the stabilisation of the the substrate awareness, (by this I mean Jhana) is not rigpa!


Yes this is correct. Other more gross 'awareness', 'pure presence', 'true Self' etc are delusional extreme views or reifications.

This is an interesting article comparing dzogchen and vipassana.
http://www.berzinarchives.com/web/en/archives/advanced/dzogchen/basic_points/introduction_dzogchen.html

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/1/14 5:31 PM as a reply to Zyndo Zyhion.
One interesting point is that the Arhat, when entering pari-nirvana, has their consciousness destroyed, and at that point all the remains is primordial awareness, or rigpa awareness.


There is no phenomena that does not obey the three characteristics and this "rigpa" or "primordial awareness" is not something separate from phenomena. These are just more names attempting to point out that "experience" or "stuff" that phenomena is "superimposed" on. There is no such "stuff," though there is the ""state"" (extra quotations on purpose) in which phenomena no longer arises. Phenomena is not superimposed on any thing.

I am currently listening to the talk by B. Alan Wallace (the second link) and he is stating that when an arahat dies he does not become "nothing" because "something" cannot become "nothing" by the laws of conservation. So in reality the arahat slips back into this "primordial awareness/rigpa/timeless state" because it is impossible to become "nothing."

This just a spin on using positive terminology instead of negative terminology to describe nirvana and is nothing more than that. There is no difference between rigpa, nirvana, and primordial awareness.

Here is a short video (by Adi Da) that also uses positive terminology to describe the ""state""" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VjOsz4BDkCE

Also see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UNNJv_U45-g

Notice he uses a lot of terms like "The Bright," "undifferentiated light," "indivisible conscious light," "prior condition in which every thing is arising," "position prior to time and space" while clearly stating that there is no "thing" that phenomena is superimposed on.

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/2/14 3:33 AM as a reply to katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks.
katy steger:
So it inherently has love of being and awareness by knowing/detecting dhammas which are not apparently aware, and has a natural conceit for being what it is: aware of being, awareness of awareness (sentience) and awareness of non-sentient stuff.

And so it is very hard to be willing to cease. Since my first cessation experience, I know the sweetness of awareness (despite the terror/foolish harm that awareness can witness/cause, too) and the brevity/wonder of being. Knowing cessation and knowing some of the sweetness and horrors of being, I see that I actually resist cessation ~ hope to create/experience more sweetness (via the sanity of the brahmaviharas or, maybe more accessibly, the golden rule) ~ and I resist ultimate or further experience of nibbana. I think this is a natural reaction and illustrated in the buddhist meditation "fetter" model.
[edited for brevity]


I find it hard to accept, the pari-nirvana view, having read Mahasi Sayadaw's work, 'Nibbanapatisamyutta Katha' I finally got a clear sense of the Theravada perspective. It's still the best elucidation I've read on the nature or topic of Nirvana from the Theravada point of view. But the Thai, have visions of there pasted masters, which sits in contrast to this view. They sit on the fence of the Mahayana and Theravda by doing this, though I doubt they would admit that. Overall, this Theravada view is to Nihilistic for me, but also the thought of some primordial being, free of fetters and karma manifesting from the Dharmakaya has a sense of the inconceivable, when i imagine this being as my self.

Tom Tom, brought up the question that there is no difference, and that really is a fair point, and I have seriously questioned and agued from this point too. In a devils advocate effort to, get some real clarity on the topic. The unknown cannot be perceived and you must go there to confirm its existence, but this quest for the golden city in the jungles may lead you no where. What we do know is presence, and that is directly conceivable! I listened again last night and here it is.

The substrate consciousness or Bhavana is the consciousness that holds our Karmic imprints and is present at the time of death. Below normal conceptual consciousness is pure awareness and the recognition and attainment of this to its deepest levels is unobscured substrate consciousness, which is realised in Jhana. This consciousness is the basis for elucidation in the state of Jhana or at the moment of Path when Jhana and Insight are fused. Wallace explains in these talks that Bhavana consciousness is a subtle form of consciousness, but deeper down is below that is Rigpa. So path can be recognised from either the Substrate or from Rigpa.

I shared these thoughts, because I thing it is important to have clarity of views. As to whether there is a deeper level of consciousness that the whole of the Theravada practice lineage is not aware of, who know? I don't!

p.s Thanks for the link D Z, I initially shared because I thought your point in the other thread was missing these understandings, but apparently not. I'll have a look at your link over the next few days, seems quite amazingly coherent!

Kind Regards.

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/1/14 6:21 PM as a reply to Zyndo Zyhion.
The substrate consciousness or Bhavana is the consciousness that is holds our Karmic imprints and is present at the time of death. This consciousness is the basis for elucidation in the state of Jhana or at the moment of Path when Jhana and Insight are fused. Wallace explains in these talks that Bhavana consciousness is a subtle form of consciousness but deeper down, is Rigpa and just below normal consciousness is pure awareness and the recognition and attainment of this at its deepest levels is substrate consciousness. So path can be recognised form either the Substrate or from Rigpa.

I share these thoughts, because I thing it is important to have clarity of views. As to whether there is a deeper level of consciousness that the whole of the Theravada practice lineage is not aware of, who know? I don't!


I suggest that there is nothing deeper than what is happening. This is not to suggest that there isn't a substrate consciousness, but rather it is a convention of speech to describe a process rather than some self-existing awareness-like inherent thing that is always sitting below phenomena.

It is the realization that there is no inherent thing that is the clarity and not the realization that there is some inherent clear-like thing. I'm not suggesting B. Alan Wallace is incorrect in stating that "something" cannot turn into "nothing," but rather this "nothingness" (not referring to 7th jhana) is always "present" and as such phenomena is always already ceasing anyways. "Cessation" does not refer to any inherent thing that is ceasing, but rather the term nirodha (ni - without rodha-confinement) is more accurate.

B. Alan Wallace is referring to this sort of "clarity" when he is talking about the stars being blotted out by the sun and isn't pointing to any specific existing phenomena that somehow inherently exists without obeying the three characteristics. It is not nihilism because there is no inherently existing thing here to cease, but rather a realization of the dissatisfaction intrinsic to phenomena when falsely observed by phenomena that is the clarity and the freedom.

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/1/14 10:37 PM as a reply to Zyndo Zyhion.
Overall, this Theravada view is to Nihilistic for me, (...)
If nibbana (extinguishment) is seen as nihilism, it is to me because there is still the conception of a self (which can be destroyed like any static thing). But something that never was something, but is always an interactiveness of aggregates, cannot be destroyed. Components can only interact. So to look at the four primary elements ~ degrees of solidity (hard/soft, earth) , degrees of fluidity (viscous/diluted, water), temperature (hot/cold, fire), and mobility (air); these have no destruction, only interactiveness. These elements are said to be the form underlying our own components of sentient being, which are these consciousnesses: perception, contact, volition, familiarity, attention. So "Nihilism" can only come into being if one thinks one actually exists as a self (and that can be annihilated, destroyed, ceased, extinguished).

But if one knows the aggregates, the interplay of many components, the basis in elements, then the separation of the aggregates and the four primaries (the four elements) does not cause an "annihilation": components are as they are, only sense of self goes, only illusion of self is destroyed, ceased.

And the person who realizes this always knows the brevity and dynamic conditions of their particular life, the release and contentment of clinging to nothing, knowledge of continual change, knowledge of sentient arising and passing. This release of clinging and even clinging to being in existence at the primary consciousness level is what is said to be realized increasingly in the four stages of the fetter model. This release is said to be the bliss arising from extinguishment (nibbana), why path moments are marked by bliss.


________
The substrate consciousness or Bhavana is the consciousness that is holds our Karmic imprints and is present at the time of death.

aside: I think some traditions consider bhavana srota and substrate consciousness to be different; that one is like a string of pearls where the pearls are moments of consciousness (cittas), the srota understanding is what is associated with continuing kamma at death; and when I've heard about substrate consciousness, I think that relates to a fundamental condition of sentience, like "basic goodness". And I would agree with that, too: that all sentience has as its commonality primary consciousness, that all sentient beings evolve from and with the primary consciousness. But it seems to me that even primary consciousness goes out of existence, like when universes collapse and there is just gradientlessness until something motion ~ some gradient, some change is triggered ~ and the gradientless in a region of space churns again, gradients arise, dhammas arise and interact, and the dhamma of consciousness comes again into being (and cease at some point again).

Finally,
I share these thoughts, because I thing it is important to have clarity of views.
"A monk whose mind is thus released does not take sides with anyone, does not dispute with anyone. He words things by means of what is said in the world but without grasping at it." From the LongNails sutta, something to consider.

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/2/14 4:17 AM as a reply to katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks.
If nibbana (extinguishment) is seen as nihilism, it is to me because there is still the conception of a self (which can be destroyed like any static thing). But something that never was something, but is always an interactiveness of aggregates, cannot be destroyed. Components can only interact. So to look at the four primary elements ~ degrees of solidity (hard/soft, earth) , degrees of fluidity (viscous/diluted, water), temperature (hot/cold, fire), and mobility (air); these have no destruction, only interactiveness. These elements are said to be the form underlying our own components of sentient being, which are these consciousnesses: perception, contact, volition, familiarity, attention. So "Nihilism" can only come into being if one thinks one actually exists as a self (and that can be annihilated, destroyed, ceased, extinguished).

There are these semantics around non-self and self. To me the problem is around how we cling to conceptions of self. But not about whether a self exists or not, this self that exists is a flux. Like a films montages, meaning is constructed and the illusion of reality is constructed. To say its not a story and someone didn't play a part, is to only look at it from a deconstructed point of view. Yes if I am old, I am no longer this me, when I was young i am no-longer that me, if I become a woman in another life i am no longer me, because me is dependant upon this male body, and also on the collection of aggregates, such as an undamaged brain that can think in this way at this point. Yet amongst these parts a whole is formed- with the understanding that the whole is a construct a temporary frame, it exists and it doesn't exist. These two ideas sit in harmony with each other, there are parts and they make a whole, also the whole is part of a bigger whole, and the whole can be taken apart, and those parts are wholes too as well as parts.

To put it simply within the confines of the ideas of reincarnation, something continues after this life, its said and this is not the consciousness that thinks as this constructed personality thinks, but the substrate consciousness and the imprints, (or you can call it something else, but this label will do for now).

And the person who realizes this always knows the brevity and dynamic conditions of their particular life, the release and contentment of clinging to nothing, knowledge of continual change, knowledge of sentient arising and passing. This release of clinging and even clinging to being in existence at the primary consciousness level is what is said to be realized increasingly in the four stages of the fetter model. This release is said to be the bliss arising from extinguishment (nibbana), why path moments are marked by bliss.

Yeah I get that there is a bliss in letting go, I feel it too, even though I haven't attained path, I feel I feel it rather strongly. But what is Pari-Nirvana to you, what is cessation? When or if that is all that remains after you died? The existentialist, believe there is no meaning, so therefore meaning must be constructed. Will you construct your meaning by speaking about how there is no meaning, or will you look at where you meaning lies. My meaning is in love & compassion, in connection, I would have killed my self, but my bodhisattva vow, or that feeling of being connected to others, gave me purpose during my darkest night. Some wisdom of emptiness sutra's, talk about the dilemma around, ultimate bodhichitta, and how at an ultimate level there is no need of compassion. I get that, point but, it seems a bit ultimate to me. If there is no self then there is not self that experiences suffering, so compassion is pointless? What remains to offer compassion to?

aside: I think some traditions consider bhavana srota and substrate consciousness to be different; that one is like a string of pearls where the pearls are moments of consciousness (cittas), the srota understanding is what is associated with continuing kamma at death; and when I've heard about substrate consciousness, I think that relates to a fundamental condition of sentience, like "basic goodness". And I would agree with that, too: that all sentience has as its commonality primary consciousness, that all sentient beings evolve from and with the primary consciousness. But it seems to me that even primary consciousness goes out of existence, like when universes collapse and there is just gradientlessness until something motion ~ some gradient, some change is triggered ~ and the gradientless in a region of space churns again, gradients arise, dhammas arise and interact, and the dhamma of consciousness comes again into being (and cease at some point again).

Wallace is using substrate as a synonym for Bhavan, the concept of basic goodness is more with buddha mind. Buddha Mind may have different association, depending on the tradition, but within Dozgchen it resides in rigpa.

A monk whose mind is thus released does not take sides with anyone, does not dispute with anyone. He words things by means of what is said in the world but without grasping at it." From the LongNails sutta, something to consider.
This is the old age dilemma, whether there is any point to speak. If nothing is said, nothing is changed, and maybe still nothing is changed. This arguments weakness is in the effort one takes to share it with another. To write down such an argument is to contradicted the argument! And agree with me, that it is worth saying something and attempting to construct truths, even if feeble.

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/2/14 4:28 AM as a reply to Tom Tom.
Hey Tom Tom, these are my thoughts

On that note maybe there is nothing deeper than presence, than being, and Path is merely a constructed myth.

But I believe that a path holder has seen to a deeper level of reality, on that basis, maybe there is also another deeper level of reality called rigpa, then again maybe not and the only deeper level of reality is cessation.

Substrate, is when the mind becomes very calm and thought has ceased, its always there but the affect of being with your being without thought and absorbed in its nowness is profound. So presence is experienced in different ways, in relation to mindfulness and samadhi. What's your problem with the idea of an unobscured view of substrate consciousness. It just unadulterated absorption in being presence or consciousness, with one object. Love, Space, Light, Unconscious-Sleep or Death.

Be well.

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/2/14 9:55 AM as a reply to Zyndo Zyhion.
Hi Neem,

To Tom Tom:
On that note maybe there is nothing deeper than presence, than being, and Path is merely a constructed myth.

But I believe that a path holder has seen to a deeper level of reality, on that basis, maybe there is also another deeper level of reality called rigpa, then again maybe not and the only deeper level of reality is cessation.
From my experience, which is merely what everyone is said to be able to release to... sotapanna mental release, what you're writing is correct. Path moment is actually a 1) cessation of all awareness (basically it is unconsciousness without the body falling over) and 2) a re-ignition of the mind, the layers of consciousnessess (called skhandas (khandas) in buddhist theory): form, perception (recognition, familiarity), sensation, intention (volition), and consciousness.

All the skhandas have a comparatively weak consciousness ~ a mild "contacting" ~ in comparison to this last khanda of "consciousness". This last consciousness is, I think, what you are looking to as "primary consciousness".

The khanda of consciousness "touches" other khandas, is aware that it "brings" awareness to the table (is aware that it was not there when it re-ignites after a cessation event) and it is always in contact with objects and "others" without being them. An analogy is air: air is always in contact with and suffusing, even, everything and every one. Yet air is not everything and everyone. Primary consciousness can also become concentrated to one location/object or connect with a local experience of sentience (say someone in pain, suffering) exactly the way air can concentrate as a strong, comfortable breeze "touches more" the objects and beings in its path.

Prior to a cessation-re-ignition event (a path moment in buddhism), a person can have a huge range of experiences related to getting closer and closer to primary or "pure" consciousness, including utter equanimity, fourth jhana. Fourth jhana offers nearly a complete view of primary consciousness, except fourth jhana lacks knowledge that consciousness, too, ceases at some point. When a person has lots of fourth jhana experience, the person naturally becomes fond of and even highly skilled or addicted to the mental uses rising from fourth jhana, complete equanimity. This is not bad: it is concentration without ethics and equanimity~ like the three poisons of gluttony, ill-will and ignorance ~ that brings our lives lots of misery and pain.

To Tom Tom:
Substrate, is when the mind becomes very calm and thought has ceased, its always there but the affect of being with your being without thought and absorbed in its nowness is profound. So presence is experienced in different ways, in relation to mindfulness and samadhi. What's your problem with the idea of an unobscured view of substrate consciousness. It just unadulterated absorption in being presence or consciousness, with one object. Love, Space, Light, (...)

In a cessation event, the first moment of the arising of the khanda of consciousness also understands that it just came into being, that it was not there just before it was there [1]. And almost simultaneous, maybe immediately following, there is the feeling of natural preference for itself, the moment of being. Primary consciousness can see in that initial arising moment what it added to the stuff already in existence, a brightening, a touching, an awareness, a softness/gentle contacting of everything, something akin to the affective states of respect and gentleness.

So this "preference" for being leads to both a) respect/love for sentience (consciousness essentially loving itself; perhaps an ontological reason we abhor meanness...and points to this love-of-sentience/kindliness to sentience "substrate consciousness" which is in anything that is sentient), and b) attachment to being, to existing. Why effort to stop awareness, this almost kindly-respectful-tender contact-awareness?

So in appreciation for awareness, itself, appreciation for what it "brings" when it comes into being, primary awareness (the root of anything sentient) actually contains an inherent resistance to full nibbana, to full cessation, to "going out" like a lamp gone out.

And so along the way, there are also wise uses of this resistance to cessation, like the making of the boddhisattva vows (which also can be made due to wise, willing suspension, not just arising as wise use of resistance to extinction), and cultivating kindliness-respect, compassion and training in the mental stabilization of complete equanimity to the point of knowing sunnata, as well as daily sati in all actions. Tall order emoticon




______
[1] One can actually feel the moments of consciousness arising in a progression (a stream, srota, is aptly named), like a string of pearls, and each consciousness is not only a new slowly-seen development in the re-ignition of consciousness at "full speed", but it contains automatically the understanding of where it came from, the preceding moment of consciousness (citta). Hence, the ability to have a hindsight view of the cessation-re-ignition event. Hence how we are aware of it, hence how we try to express it in words. The mental continuum ignites and feels like it leaves a proprioceptive log of where the mind has been: off, then re-igniting progressively.

Edit: we could talk about your other thoughts/queries if the above does not give new consideration. I feel like the above takes in your other lines of investigation, but maybe to you it does not. Thanks for your post :]

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/2/14 2:49 PM as a reply to Zyndo Zyhion.
Hi neen nyima, sorry I have not had time to reply to your post in my thread, I am glad you re-posted this question. This is an interesting discussion.

neem nyima:

Asking questions about difference between pure awareness and primordial awareness/rigpa. It turns out its just like Namkhai Norbu says when he would repeatedly say to the gathering over the ten days teachings, (I did 2 of those at the Australian Namgyalgar Centre) that no one is recognising Rigpa, he actually meant it quite literally. The notion that Rigpa is available because it is our primordial nature, is stretched, to say the least.


This statement by Namkhai Norbu could be interpreted in two ways: 1) that when an individual recognizes rigpa, in doing so, or prior to doing so, they have so overcome their dualistic clinging to a 'self' such that they are not forming the delusion that there is someone recognizing 'rigpa'. Instead, ripga is simply recognized, and this recognition is not ascribed to a separate self. 2) more literally, that no practitioners are having any luck recognizing rigpa in their own personal practices.

In my opinion, the 1st interpretation seems the most likely given Namkai Norbus's apparent realization. Why would such a teacher, so focused on transmitting advanced Dzogchen teachings tell his students that they will likely fail? It seems more likely that he means this statement in a less literal way meant to be interpreted on the basis of ultimate tachings.

Further support for this interpretation comes from the definition of rigpa itself. From the Rigpa Wiki, rigpa means: "‘the innermost nature of the mind’, our ultimate nature, the state of omniscience or enlightenment—a truth so universal, so primordial that it goes beyond all limits, and beyond even religion itself". The definition from Wikipedia is: "In a Dzogchen context, rigpa is the knowledge that ensues from recognizing one's nature. So to sum up these definitions in my own words, rigpa is both our ultimate nature, and the recognition of our ultimate nature." In other words, the recognition of our ultimate nature entails the experience of the ultimate nature recognizing itself. As nothing is separate, and all is one, as all things are composed of the same ultimate nature, in the full recognition of non-duality, one's awareness recognizes itself and all things as one. As Trungpa said, it is the "razor blade cutting itself".

On the basis of these definitions, the 1st interpretation seems completely accurate. As rigpa is the state of ultimate awareness, of complete enlightenment, once this realization dawns, no false sense of duality remains, thus there is no one (aka separate self) that recognizes rigpa.

Having said this, your post seems mostly to deal with the 2nd interpretation, which frankly is also relatively accurate. Most people are not recognizing rigpa, however this is not to say they cannot. Enlightenment is achievable, it's just not easy to achieve.

neem nyima:
I have had this debate with a friend. who leans toward the books that seem to talk about Dzogchen's availability.., the problem is I these books are coming from the ultimate perspective, of our very essential nature. There is a tendency in Dzogchen teachings to start from the top and then move down to the relative, so in these pointing outs or texts that speak of the recognition of the primordial, come from the position of speaking to and from the root of our Omniscient Buddha Nature.
So because Rigpa is our nature, from an ultimate perspective, it is ultimately available.

Being or Presence and the non-dual stabilisation of it (by this I mean path) or the stabilisation of the the substrate awareness, (by this I mean Jhana) is not rigpa! Alan Wallace said, and Sogyal Rinpoche agreed with him, when he sent him a letter covering these points.
Rigpa takes, either Shamatha Jhana or at least a Path to be recognised. This becomes clear, in the book, 'Stilling the Mind,' which is a commentary on Dudjom Lingpa's text Vajra Essence. Also as Wallace explains, Path doesn't necessarily dispose one to the realisation of Rigpa, but is one of the requirements for its recognition. One interesting point is that the Arhat, when entering pari-nirvana, has their consciousness destroyed, and at that point all the remains is primordial awareness, or rigpa awareness.


When you talk about availability, be aware that you are talking about the availability of the enlightened state (as that is the definitions of rigpa I have found). While is abundantly available to all beings, it is the goal at the end of a long path, and is not likely to be found by accident. So in other words, just because it's not easy to reach doesn't mean it's not available. It is most definitely available, but to reach it, you will have to overcome literally all of your dualistic confusion. That is the meaning of enlightenment.

When you talk about requirements to recognize rigpa, again, keep in mind what you are talking about recognizing (ultimate nature, aka enlightenment). What Wallace said about path being a requirement to recognize rigpa, which does not create a predisposition, is accurate in the sense that the attainment of path may be just a stage on a greater journey, with many more stages through which one must pass on the way to recognition of your ultimate nature.

As for those talks below, and a difference between rigpa and nirvana, based on the definitions I have found, it seems they are the same thing. Though I disagree, I would be interested in what Wallace says about it, do you know where in the talk he discussed it? I tried to listen to them, but could not find clear discussion of rigpa vs. nirvana.

Cheers!

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/2/14 4:39 PM as a reply to Zyndo Zyhion.
Hi Neem,

I listened to the "bonus follow-up" you linked. He says at 3/4 point,
"I find all of this enormously inspiring and fascinating as challenges for experience (...) if this can actually become experiential, that's pretty interesting, to put it lightly," which indicates that he may be teaching some of this based on text principle versus realization.

So the take away for me is always not to spend time and energy too much on questions arising from anyone's lecture, like "Is there a consciousness beyond khandas or is primary consciousness part of the consciousness khanda? What is rigpa? What is pari-nibbana?" These are human typologies that have gained convention through teaching groups; obviously typologies are symbols related to language symbols so that people can communicate each other's systems.

Yes, I listen to a teacher, sometimes debate them, but ultimately, I have to do my own work.

And in contrast to the symbolic knowledge we hear and discuss with peers and teachers, we each have the option to study consciousness through our own practice, using tools like concentration (open awareness, focused awareness, noting, mantra, prayer, sati).

For myself, for example, the typology of khandas was adequate to guide me in meditation and I still refer to it for convention in conversation. To me the khanda of consciousness, because it is a typology, contains the experiences of consciousnesses I've had and which I raised above: this includes primary "released" consciousness arising after cessation and which is can move in equanimity, and its predecessor ~ subtly conceited consciousness, which can also move about in equanimity, though it is not released and bears subtle conceit, and affective consciousness seen in "normal" daily moods.

To me, the consciousness study is huge and we each have a lab. If we have kindly, safe conditions for that lab, this is amazing.

So if you like this teacher, great, use it. And...
Neem:
I have annoyed quite a few faith driven students at Namhai Norbhu's retreats in Australia.
where I would spend more time in argumentation or rumination, then I would essentially be getting gratified by those ruminating/argumentative actions and avoiding my own study-practice. That would be me; I'm not saying that's what you're doing. Sometimes training in meditation on the cushion and/or dedicating weeks and weeks to sincere, effortful sati is too hard compared with habitual ruminating/argumentation/speculation/discursiveness. So one ruminates and argues and seeks to discuss a bit. That is useful for unwinding that urge/habit until those activities are seen to be unreliable and not satisfactory.

______
Also, I quoted LongNails not to effect silence. Not at all. But to question a tone of perhaps needless disagreement/presumption (which I also question in myself when I spot it) which can telegraph that one is using the mind's energy to ruminate on evaluating others versus seeing for oneself in practice, wherein satisfaction, satiety, can actually be found. LongNails on this point is akin to the fifth point in the five qualifications of a teacher that I like to remember, helpful to seekers and teachers alike.


Best wishes.

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/2/14 10:42 PM as a reply to Zyndo Zyhion.
Hello Neem Nyima,

On that note maybe there is nothing deeper than presence, than being, and Path is merely a constructed myth.


What I was getting at is that there is no being or presence or some inherently existing "thing" and therefore there can be nothing "deeper" as since nothing (no thing) inherently exists then the word "deeper" no longer applies to the situation.

But I believe that a path holder has seen to a deeper level of reality, on that basis, maybe there is also another deeper level of reality called rigpa, then again maybe not and the only deeper level of reality is cessation.


A path holder does not see to a "deeper level of reality," but rather sees things closer to the way they actually are.

Substrate, is when the mind becomes very calm and thought has ceased, its always there but the affect of being with your being without thought and absorbed in its nowness is profound. So presence is experienced in different ways, in relation to mindfulness and samadhi. What's your problem with the idea of an unobscured view of substrate consciousness. It just unadulterated absorption in being presence or consciousness, with one object. Love, Space, Light, Unconscious-Sleep or Death.


Absorption is not realization, absorption is the result of temporarily pretending phenomena is permanent for the purposes of bliss and/or exploring interesting results into the nature of relative reality. It can also be used for gaining insight similar to the way one would build a house of cards and then knock it down.

An analogy to the primordial awareness debate is the previous scientific belief that light ( electromagnetic radiation ) had to travel through some sort of "aether" to propagate. As such, physicists postulated that there was some mysterious "luminiferous aether" that was weightless, transparent, and permeating all matter and space. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luminiferous_aether

It was later realized from the Michelson-Morley experiment and special relativity that there is no such aether and light need not require this aether for its propagation.

Similarly, phenomena does not require some pre-existing primordial substance, but rather arises where it is with no external awareness whatsoever. Similarly, the luminosity intrinsically arises from the proper perception of phenomena - from the realization that """one""" was pretending phenomena or phenomena's mental echo (which is more phenomena) was somehow permanent and/or an observer of other phenomena from which phenomena arises, as causality requires no pre-existing backdrop for its operation. EDIT: Thus there is no luminous primordial ooze, primordial awareness, or rigpa that is (edit) not (/edit) sensate or phenomenal (though these terms can serve as useful pointers to (edit) the realization of this (/edit)).

This can sound scary or annihilative, though there is no such fear arising over the situation since when and where is also absent: since there is nothing to move around, nothing to travel around, nowhere to go, nothing to do other than the doing itself. There is only phenomena arising as phenomena and as such there is nothing to die, nothing to cease, nothing to annihilate. It is not merely some comforting language, but rather a direct realization of the actual situation in which we "find ourselves."

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/3/14 4:26 AM as a reply to (D Z) Dhru Val.
Hi DZ, I read the article on dzogchen V. vipassana from the link you provided here:

Vipassana (lhag-mthong, Skt. vipashyana) meditation within the sphere of Theravada Buddhism entails noting and watching the arising and falling of moments of conceptual thinking, but not through the “eyes” of an independently existing “me” as the observer. Through this procedure, we realize the impermanence or fleeting nature of conceptual thought and of mental activity in general. We also realize that mental activity occurs without an independent agent “me” either observing it or making it happen.

Dzogchen meditation, in contrast, focuses on the simultaneous arising, abiding, and disappearing of moments of conceptual thinking – not simply noting or watching it. This allows us to recognize first effulgent rigpa – the aspect of rigpa that spontaneously establishes the appearance of simultaneously arising, abiding, and disappearing thoughts. It then allows us to recognize essence rigpa – the aspect of rigpa that serves as the cognitive space underlying every moment of mental activity and allowing for the spontaneous establishment of simultaneously arising, abiding, and disappearing thoughts.

Moreover, vipassana deals only with the grosser levels of mental activity, whereas dzogchen accesses the subtlest level, rigpa.


I was wondering if you could clarify (or anybody else) the bit I bolded re simultaneous arising, abiding, etc in dzogchen? That is, what does it mean to focus on " ... simultaneous arising, abiding and disappearing of moments of conceptual thinking" that Berzin mentions? He doesn't seem to expand on this point, or at least it wasn't clear to me.

Thanks in advance,
Chris

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/3/14 8:20 AM as a reply to katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks.
Greetings Katy

katy steger:
I listened to the "bonus follow-up" you linked. He says at 3/4 point,
"I find all of this enormously inspiring and fascinating as challenges for experience (...) if this can actually become experiential, that's pretty interesting, to put it lightly," which indicates that he may be teaching some of this based on text principle versus realization.


Maybe, but who knows, he comes from that old school group of people like Jack Kornfield, and they don't talk about their attainments. I've listened to about thirty of his talks and guided meditations, and he talks a fair bit about his history and experiences. I'd be inclined to think he has experience an attainment?

I've read part of a thread of yours where you talk about the problems of Thanassaro Bikkhu, Thanassaro is quite good for a traditionalist, who is likely wrong in the areas you critiqued him. I'd like to remind you that Daniel's last teacher before he attained, Sayadaw U Pandita, who is also my teacher in Melbourne, has quite a lot of traditional dogma just as Thanasaaro. I asked him about whether an Arhat would die if he didn't take the robes, and he said yes. If he spoke truly then he must not think Daniels attained. What I think here, is that attainment of Arhatship doesn't make you perfect in your morals or intellectual wisdom, and you can still be wrong about things. In the end it is only the person how knows whether they are attained based on, what identifications remain.
I remember Daniel in a thread once saying that Wallace is close minded, around dry insight and by that suggesting also that other areas of his critiques of soft jhana are wrong. I expect Wallace to be close minded around the dry insight issue, but that doesn't mean Dry Insighter's have to follow suit. But there does seems to be some discrepancy between, notions of soft jhana, insight jhana and the notion of jhana in the Visuddhimagga. But that doesn't mean everything that Mahasi taught is wrong, and i understand what he means by soft jhana and insight jhana, but they don't conform to the common language of the Visuddhimagga. I guess I'll have to accept the break with the association with those traditional terms, within the the dry insight school.

Yes, I listen to a teacher, sometimes debate them, but ultimately, I have to do my own work.

For myself, for example, the typology of khandas was adequate to guide me in meditation and I still refer to it for convention in conversation. To me the khanda of consciousness, because it is a typology, contains the experiences of consciousnesses I've had and which I raised above: this includes primary "released" consciousness arising after cessation and which is can move in equanimity, and its predecessor ~ subtly conceited consciousness, which can also move about in equanimity, though it is not released and bears subtle conceit, and affective consciousness seen in "normal" daily moods.


So what makes your words any different to anyone else's words. I'm assuming that mixed in with the sharing about your experience is also a sense of advice, sorry if that isn't so. Its not that your advice isn't good, its just that other advice is also good.

Yeah i have a chat every now and then and share a point or two and also disagree with a point or two. Mostly I avoid these more complicated debates, and offer simple advice around practices I know and how to practice them.

It seems that dzogchen might be wrong or they might be right, about a deeper level of consciousness, but this is not the point, for me, because that can't really be resolved, without the direct experience of it, just with Path. The point to me is understanding others views, with clarity, and then making up your own mind, along with maybe seen how or why someone might think that way. In that regard, we have more of a chance to read between the lines, to the essence of their intention, rather than get caught up, in the semantics of their perspectives. Or we might go this is how these people think, i'm not inclined to think that, there is reincarnation or rigpa, or continuation after Arhatship. But its not like they want to burn all gays and think god is sending everyone to hell that doesn't believe in him. And maybe its possibly true, that there is reincarnation and rigpa, personally i don't know. Thought I feel a strong, a bit more strongly about reincarnation, truthfully I still don't know.

There is a theme, that emptiness is form and form is emptiness, and emptiness is not other than form and form is not other than emptiness. Thats how I view the concept of self and not self. So I see a dilemma, in this need to attack self, there is no self to attack, what's the big deal? But this is one of those argument even amongst Buddhist who advocate for no-self...

"I have annoyed quite a few faith driven students at Namhai Norbhu's retreats in Australia."
Where I would spend more time in argumentation or rumination, then I would essentially be getting gratified by those ruminating/argumentative actions and avoiding my own study-practice. That would be me; I'm not saying that's what you're doing. Sometimes training in meditation on the cushion and/or dedicating weeks and weeks to sincere, effortful sati is too hard compared with habitual ruminating/argumentation/speculation/discursiveness. So one ruminates and argues and seeks to discuss a bit. That is useful for unwinding that urge/habit until those activities are seen to be unreliable and not satisfactory.

At the time i was studying Dzogchen, and i was trying to work out whether, Rigpa could actually be worked with and what the difference was between awareness and rigpa, no one really understood, and many of them were upset by my questioning, because it created doubt in them around their devotion to Namkhai Norbu and his path and around their attachment of Dzogchen.
Yeah, I'm not spending all my time getting it done, but are you, and are you an Arhat? Have you finished it all, and just because one person does, does that mean it will be that easy for everyone?
I've got another retreat in april for a month, I'll be good a month before that retreat. I don't like a lot about existence, it often bores me but i don't like meditating a lot too(I'm sick of trying to make it better, and the sensitisation that comes with the practice, i'm getting better at accepting that.). I've notice in the last four years since I started this path, that after my earlier retreat, that on a deeper level I may be becoming more equanimous. My basis for saying that is that, during my last retreat, last April. Things where mostly smooth! And that has never the case before (in my eleven months of retreat), it was sort of fucking intense a lot of the time. So is my glass half full or is it half empty? I'm taking it easy, or trying to, while I study transpersonal counselling.

Also, I quoted LongNails not to effect silence. Not at all. But to question a tone of perhaps needless disagreement/presumption (which I also question in myself when I spot it) which can telegraph that one is using the mind's energy to ruminate on evaluating others versus seeing for oneself in practice, wherein satisfaction, satiety, can actually be found. LongNails on this point is akin to the fifth point in the five qualifications of a teacher that I like to remember, helpful to seekers and teachers alike.


Yes I see that point, but you seem quite vocal your self.
Also I'm getting better at not getting involved, for an socialist greenie & idealist. Jack Kornfield said quite elegantly, that, some people care a bit more and this can make them angry or more offensive, and some people are more detached and this can make them more tolerable or uninvolved. They are both quite good qualities in different ways.
Sharing, at least with people who I feel i can help in areas of meditation that I have traversed, makes me happy, makes me feel metta, this gives me meaning, in a dark night period were dukha and a no-self, kind of nothingness of meaning has prevailed, for many years. This helps my personality, my sense of self as it is reconstructed in each new moment. Jack Kornfield also talked about the benefits of approaches that deal with personality and how this can be complementary to some peoples path. Comic examples of this are enlightened people who need counselling to learn to relate to others better, depicted in, After the Ecstasy the Laundry.

You sound a be more zealous, and critical, than you have been, in some of your other threads that i've seen. I tend to not read that much of what goes on on this site. As sometime its to intellectual and a lot of the arguments go round in circles. Many seem to have a tendency to nit pick over finer points, than aren't relevant to me. To the people i know, i am intellectual, but to the people on this site, I think what I write may be a bit intellectually disinteresting, maybe even a bit simple. Maybe this is just my projection around some of the arguments on this site. But when i start to read a lot of these threads, I quickly get really bored by the intellectualisations and arguments. But if a person seems to be speaking from a position of trying to learn something, something that i know about, something that is coming from the heart, then it seems much more interesting to me. Yes there is some conceit around this but also there is just some really nice rejoicing in the opportunity to help, and in peoples progress on the path. And some compassion and some empathy.

Shit I've gone on, oh well...

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/3/14 4:01 PM as a reply to Zyndo Zyhion.
Hi Neem,

I am rethinking my reply and editing this.

Shit I've gone on, oh well...
Me, too. If I am ever succinct out of the gate, then I'd like a scout badge for my sash for that.

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/3/14 6:48 PM as a reply to Zyndo Zyhion.
Okay, here's a little Stars of the Lid intermission: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YxqVrgFOk3o. There is an unexpected refereeing in there at the end. Admittedly, I enjoy this a lot more if if I just watch the scenery shots.
_________

Back to the thread.

In short, I don't understand why there is a debate, as in "I have had this debate with a friend."

And I don't understand why there is a problem, as in "the problem is I these books are coming from the ultimate perspective, of our very essential nature" and "To me the problem is around how we cling to conceptions of self. But not about whether a self exists or not, this self that exists is a flux." Who is the "We" that does this?

To your thread question ~ "What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?" ~ what is your experiential answer?
I'm not looking for right/wrong, but our exchange of experiences.


_________
Could you point me specifically to where you find basis for this: "I've read part of a thread of yours where you talk about the problems of Thanassaro Bikkhu, Thanassaro is quite good for a traditionalist, who is likely wrong in the areas you critiqued him."

I do flag paper tigers/presumption (in myself, teachers and anyone asking for feedback if it occurs in their accounting) as these "paper tigers" and "straw men" form conceit. Maybe I flagged something that was unsubstantiated or needlessly created an inferior foil so that the speaker could be the superior character in their speech? This is not what I think of when I think of this monk, but I know that lately I am aware of how often I read "paper tigers" foils. Even this morning and last night, two scholar-practioners who are new to me wrote disparaging comments with "paper-tiger" peoples to make their own points. And I can immediately think of a third scholar-practioner who I recall doing it. Why does this happen? Is there a value to disparaging others even by way of paper tigers? I only find the seeds of harmful cause-and-effect when I see this or have done it myself.

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/4/14 12:50 AM as a reply to katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks.
katy steger:


I do flag paper tigers/presumption (in myself, teachers and anyone asking for feedback if it occurs in their accounting) as these "paper tigers" and "straw men" form conceit. Maybe I flagged something that was unsubstantiated or needlessly created an inferior foil so that the speaker could be the superior character in their speech? This is not what I think of when I think of this monk, but I know that lately I am aware of how often I read "paper tigers" foils. Even this morning and last night, two scholar-practioners who are new to me wrote disparaging comments with "paper-tiger" peoples to make their own points. And I can immediately think of a third scholar-practioner who I recall doing it. Why does this happen? Is there a value to disparaging others even by way of paper tigers? I only find the seeds of harmful cause-and-effect when I see this or have done it myself.


Personally, I am trying to bring this habit to cessation, I find when I disagree with what someone says, my instinct is to correct their viewpoint. Kinda funny. This arises from personality viewpoint, meaning, when we know something because of our personal experiences, we "know" it is correct, after all it is within our realm of experience. Problem is, there are 7 billion other personality viewpoints out there, and they all feel they are correct, also.

In other words, there is one reality, but 7 billion human mind reflections of that reality, none of these human reflections with personal viewpoints are correct, so therein lies the conflict, thus dukkha.

With a universal viewpoint, there is no conflict, people view what they view. If there is no craving for things to be different, there is no conflict, no dukkha.

Now, if I can only get this to sink through the thickness of my skull.

Anyways, just sharing something I am struggling with, didn't mean to butt into the Rigpa Nibbana Dimensions....

Why Phi

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/4/14 5:04 AM as a reply to katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks.
Thanks for your input all.

I thought I read something in passing, Katy, when I read a bit of something something you wrote, if you don't recall it. Maybe I'm wrong. If so sorry.

I'll try to take your advice and meditated a bit more, and look to my own personal experience a bit more.

Thanks for your thoughts. Your a thoughtful and interesting person.

Neem.

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/4/14 7:09 AM as a reply to Zyndo Zyhion.
Nirvana is where you are being created. You can withstand more and more energies. Find the blocks where energy is stuck and eliminate/resolve them. Gather/cultivate energy and let it show what you need to do.

No complicated concepts, just energy.

Figure out the way to be where you will feel the vaccuum like balance, feels like time stands still. It expands, the more you cultivate it. Energies will lead you there eventually.
It can get overwhelming, you also can add fuel to enhance it or you can stop the fire also. Overall in a big picture it is slow process.

It get more enjoyable over time. I am mere beginner in this haha.

streamenterer:
there is stream of energy flowing, to be stream enterer i need to jump in.

arahat:
i also need to let go from holding my feet on bottom, i need to let go myself completely from the things what holding me from flowing freely with the energy. If i am flowing freely with the same pace with the energy, there is no flowing at all...vaccuum.

Also: you are less vulnerable by the attacks from the shore people, but ther eare some stuff in deeper waters, but seems earth stream is pretty safe to evolve.

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/4/14 7:40 AM as a reply to Psi.
Hi Sci Fi,

First, I enjoyed your recent reply to sawfoot in o'er in yonder humour thread.

Personally, I am trying to bring this habit to cessation, I find when I disagree with what someone says, my instinct is to correct their viewpoint. Kinda funny. This arises from personality viewpoint, meaning, when we know something because of our personal experiences, we "know" it is correct, after all it is within our realm of experience. Problem is, there are 7 billion other personality viewpoints out there, and they all feel they are correct, also.
So I have raised paper tigers in such a way in the past that did gratify my own conceit. As you may know or imagine, that gratification is not worth boo. It is trouble. So I had to look at that.

Now I call out "paper tigering" because I see it in many talks and writings more often than not* and as far as I can tell people, like myself, like the outcome of removing paper tigers in their thinking. There is an actual reason for this: we are removing an enemy from our brains that we have created and sustained, a sort of vigilance that forces the amygdala to keep routing information to a fight/combative mode (which has its uses in actual fights). So a benefit of ceasing paper tigers is actually pleasure (removing a sustained threat, enemy) and the ability to learn much better; the amygdala can send information on to the prefrontal cortex and memory banks...

*I could be very specific here just in regards to some of the scholars I listened to or read in the past two months, say, but I was able to discuss the issues directly at the time. In person my softer approach, which is deliberate, can be shown and felt. In blog forums, if I am dealing with someone using an anonymous avatar then I tend to just say, "Okay, to hell with it: there's conceited paper triggering. I'll just call it." I forget that the person using conceit is usually fronting for some pain, some brain threat, like anxiety. But I am starting to think that I should just send a PM and see if people want to talk online for a few minutes.

Also, speculation is also kinda of good: it shows the actual brain is myelinating a story; it is learning something and creating something. It's just that at the end of the day, in meditative practices that speak of progressive lightenings up, speculation doesn't offer reliable mind at the moment of dying. Speculation doesn't offer the calmness of understanding that the study, investigation and experience do.

I was really lucky to start here when Tarin, SW and Daniel were giving airtime to actualism. The way Tarin encouraged me in the actualism practices of being at the senses lined up usefully with my own disgust with my "clever" intellect. So suddenly one day I was willing to try something new, and totally. One day I just said, I'm doing that practice till I change. I had a lot of conviction in Tarin, in part because he withstood so much of my combativeness without being moved, by also burning up my paper tigers.

And he eventually did just start ignoring my affective iterations. So one day I decided to try something like "sati-or-bust", practice not speculate or argue. For the first four days my mind actually missed the gratification of my stories about everything, my cleverness. Then about two weeks in my partner was like, "What are you doing? You seem really nice." I was actually listening to him, finally, for days and days and days with friendliness and non-judgement, enjoying the pleasure in the senses of hearing someone who is not being harmful. Then about 4-6 weeks in single-point concentration happened out of the blue and I thought, "Wow. They aren't kidding. The mind really hyper-focuses and it's wild." Thus started my interest in sitting meditation again.

And this fall I needed to start returning to sincere, tender sati. It does wonders.

So, yes, sometimes I do presume to suggest people actually practice. Speculation has a great use in showing that the mind is interested, is building a novel story, but at some point speculation is a balloon that pops and leaves nothing, unless that bust moves someone to practice.

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/4/14 11:46 PM as a reply to Chris M.
Chris M:


Vipassana (lhag-mthong, Skt. vipashyana) meditation within the sphere of Theravada Buddhism entails noting and watching the arising and falling of moments of conceptual thinking, but not through the “eyes” of an independently existing “me” as the observer. Through this procedure, we realize the impermanence or fleeting nature of conceptual thought and of mental activity in general. We also realize that mental activity occurs without an independent agent “me” either observing it or making it happen.

Dzogchen meditation, in contrast, focuses on the simultaneous arising, abiding, and disappearing of moments of conceptual thinking – not simply noting or watching it. This allows us to recognize first effulgent rigpa – the aspect of rigpa that spontaneously establishes the appearance of simultaneously arising, abiding, and disappearing thoughts. It then allows us to recognize essence rigpa – the aspect of rigpa that serves as the cognitive space underlying every moment of mental activity and allowing for the spontaneous establishment of simultaneously arising, abiding, and disappearing thoughts.


I was wondering if you could clarify (or anybody else) the bit I bolded re simultaneous arising, abiding, etc in dzogchen? That is, what does it mean to focus on " ... simultaneous arising, abiding and disappearing of moments of conceptual thinking" that Berzin mentions? He doesn't seem to expand on this point, or at least it wasn't clear to me.


Normally thoughts are seen as occurring over time with a sort of: beginning -> middle -> end progression that is spread out over time.

The focus with any type of insight practice is on the experience of phenomeon, which is always occurring cusp of the present moment.

Thought is a type of experience. When is a thought really happening ? When does it abide ? When does it stop ?

We are not looking for intellectual answers for these questions. Because that would just be more thoughts.

Noting is happening after the moment has passed and some cognition has taken place. So too slow and gross (aggregated) from a Dzogchen standpoint.

We are also not trying to watch the thought as a background watcher to the thoughts, then that is also just cognitive imputation happening because of ignorance of the present moment.

There is no need for a 'watcher' because there is a very basic knowing implicit in the thought occurring at all. This sort of 'knowing' is also implicit in perceiving a 'watcher' or any other phenomenon. It is not other than the phenomenon itself.

So the key is to see thought as thought in the present moment without getting distracted. Then we can see that it is simultaneously arising, passing, and ending.

We see the nature of thought prior to forming ideas of when and where, prior to attachment to aggregates (but to say 'prior' is a bit misleading due to no time). This is something like the first taste of Rigpa.

RE: What is the difference between Nirvana & Rigpa?
Answer
1/5/14 12:55 AM as a reply to katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks.
How refreshing to hear this well explained, It seems from this I will have another tool to use, if this paper tiger formation gets past my mindfulness, then I can just note " paper tiger sensation, paper tiger sensation" have a quick laugh at the minds absurdity, and get back to bare mindfulness. Indeed it is not a person or a person's ideas, or a person's negative comments taht give arise to dukkha, but only the mind creating a "paper tiger" This is such a relief. I tawt I saw a puddy tat, I did I did! I'll stop funnin' too many hours at work.
Thank you,
Okay, that's all for meow....
Bye meow