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Live Webcast of Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche Meditation Retreat

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Retreat starts this Friday. Most days have multiple sessions, with the early session being in the early AM hours for most of us in the states. Donations are requested but not required. To donate go to http://tsegyalgar.org/support/, to attend the retreat go to http://webcast.dzogchen.net/.

The details are:

Timezone is GMT +1.00
5-6pm. Presentation of this retreat teaching and transmit the Ati Guru Yoga.
6:15pm-7:45pm Khaita

4th June
10-12am.Tsalung from Vairo Gyud-bum: The Tsalung Tig- Gyud and Rinpoche Dam-ngag Gyud Chi-ma.  
5-6pm. Explanation of Four Characteristic conditions and Four Profound Applications,
and apply both altogether.
6:15pm-7:45pm Khaita

5th June
10-12am. Explanation about the Tsa
from Dra Thal-gyur Tantra and how explained in it’s commentary
of Bimalamitra.

5-6pm.Explanation of the
Secret Breathing for Directing the Prana into the central Channel
and apply it altogether.
6:15pm-7:45pm Khaita

6th June
10-12am.    Explanation about the Lung
from Dra Thal-gyur Tantra and how explained it in Bimala’s
commentary.    
5-6pm.Explanation of the
Smooth Breathing with Seven Limbs and the Rough Breathing
With Six Applications.
6:15pm-7:45pm Khaita

7th June
10-12am. Tridlungs of the Yantra
Root text and some others. Also give some general advices.

May all beings attain enlightenment in the not-too-distant future. emoticon

RE: Live Webcast of Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche Meditation Retreat
Answer
6/2/16 11:39 AM as a reply to Shamadhi Sam.
Thank you very much for posting this. I would've missed it otherwise.

RE: Live Webcast of Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche Meditation Retreat
Answer
6/2/16 1:45 PM as a reply to Matthew.
My pleasure! It would be awesome to be able to discuss with DhO peeps while it's going on and afterwards. I found out about it quite randomly. I hope others will post when similar webinar retreats come up.

RE: Live Webcast of Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche Meditation Retreat
Answer
6/3/16 9:27 AM as a reply to Shamadhi Sam.
excellent. 

RE: Live Webcast of Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche Meditation Retreat
Answer
6/3/16 10:39 AM as a reply to Shamadhi Sam.
The broadcast has started, even though things don't officially get rockin' for another 20 min or so. Here is a more direct link to the live broadcast.
http://webcast.dzogchen.net/index.php?id=live-webcast

RE: Live Webcast of Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche Meditation Retreat
Answer
6/3/16 1:41 PM as a reply to Shamadhi Sam.
Thanks for posting this.  It's rare to find this kind of thing.

RE: Live Webcast of Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche Meditation Retreat
Answer
6/3/16 7:44 PM as a reply to Shamadhi Sam.
Some interesting things I got out of the first session.

-At about the 15 min mark, he got into a really interesting presentation on relative vs absolute reality. Anyone with any Zen training in their background would be somewhat familiar with type of teaching, however I enjoyed hearing it from a Tibetan perspective. Unfortunately, this was during the time that the feed was having issues. I especially liked the notion that if one can abide in the natural (absolute) state, then many aspects of relative practice will take care of themselves.

-Lama Norbu's view that no preparation is necessarily required for Dzogchen practice. He specifically mentions Ngondro and Vajrayana not be necessary prerequisites. That Dzogchen represents, in his view, the pinnacle of Tibetan Buddhist teachings. And that practices such as Ngondro and Tantra Vajrayana can be taken up by that have difficulties with the "direct" path of Dzogchen.

He made a point about people essentially being wired differently, and their temperament, disposition, background, karma, etc. coloring which blend of practices would work best for them.

-The value of practicing during full and new moons. As well as the Day of Padmasambhava and the Day of the Dakini. If I heard him right, one is five days before the full moon and the other is five days prior to the new moon. Unfortunately, I could not make out which was which.

-His explanation of the transmission process. That basically, the teacher recites the mantra and the student listens. And that in that process, something is communicated that allows (is of great benefit to) the student to continue with the practice.  I found the fact that several transmissions took place during the video in a span of about 5 minutes, quite interesting.

I've never witnessed any other transmissions before, so I have nothing to compare them to. Wondering if other teachers take a more "pomp and circumstance" approach to transmission. His take seemed very "nuts and bolts", which from a pragmatic point of view, I appreciate.

-He listed about five steps to a Dzogchen practice session (at least as a template for the retreat). I had a hard time understanding what he was saying at this point, mainly due to his accent, but here is what I got out of it:

1. Prep - Asking the Buddhas, protectors, linage gurus for their aid with the practice, followed by cultivation of Boddhicitta. What I really liked about his explanation of this stage was his idea that using some formal sadhana for this was not required, and that what was essential was the intention and feeling connected to those intentions. That any formal shadhana one undertook in this regard was undertaken simply as an aid to the generation of feeling and intention.

2. The performance of Ati Guru Yoga.

3. Recitation of the Song of Vajra Mantra, which is optional.

4. Resting into the open awareness, which hopefully results. Or alternatively, resting into whatever "is" at that moment.

5. The dedication of merit to all sentient beings. This was another area where the primacy of emotions and feelings where stressed as the essence of the practice.

He read the Ati Guru yoga and Son of Vajra from a little practice booklet. I'd really like to get my hands on a copy of that! Probably available somewhere on the Dzogchen.net site.

-The fact that in his many years of training, he had never heard of a Vairochana Tantra, until about 30 years ago, when a copy of eight volumes was discovered in northern India after the death of a member of a prominent local family. Some monks went to do puja for the family and came across the find. I don't know if this qualifies as an "according to Hoyle" terma, but the effect is pretty similar.

In analyzing the text, they constitute a series of partial tantras, heavy on mantra, but short or almost non-existent on the contextual components of the tantra (visualization, etc). Lama Norbu indicated that he believes these to be the oldest known extant Dzogchen teachings. That he spent three years working with these texts, and that it seems that the full implications of the find are still unknown.

RE: Live Webcast of Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche Meditation Retreat
Answer
6/3/16 2:59 PM as a reply to Shamadhi Sam.
Shamadhi Sam:
-Lama Norbu's view that no preparation is necessarily required for Dzogchen practice. He specifically mentions Ngondro and Vajrayana not be necessary prerequisites. That Dzogchen represents, in his view, the pinnacle of Tibetan Buddhist teachings. And that practices such as Ngondro and Tantra can be taken up by that have difficulties with the "direct" path of Dzogchen.

Wish I had had someone say I didn't have to do the Ngondro, though I was given a pass on having to complete it. I guess it dredged up a crapload of unprocessed attachments and karma that I got to dark night my way through though. Fun! emoticon

RE: Live Webcast of Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche Meditation Retreat
Answer
6/3/16 4:26 PM as a reply to Stirling Campbell.
@Stirling, I didn't get the impression that Lama Norbu was of the opinion that Njondro was not of any value. He seemed to be saying that some people were better off with it and some people without. Also, the first session of the retreat really got me to start thinking about the distinctions between the words Tantra and Vajrayana.

I'm starting to think of Vajrayana as a subset of Tantra. Especially because it was clear from this session that many of the Dzogchen practices seem to be labeled "tantras", even though they are not Vajrayana tantras. At several times he stressed the differences between the Vajrayana approach and the Dzogchen approach.

I am curious to know if there where any specific techniques, strategies or approaches that helped you get through the "unprocessed attachments and karma"? It seems like from a Dzogchen point of view, this is where trekchod would come in, even though it is a subject I know very little about.

RE: Live Webcast of Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche Meditation Retreat
Answer
6/5/16 11:18 AM as a reply to Shamadhi Sam.
Shamadhi Sam:
@Stirling, I didn't get the impression that Lama Norbu was of the opinion that Njondro was not of any value. He seemed to be saying that some people were better off with it and some people without. Also, the first session of the retreat really got me to start thinking about the distinctions between the words Tantra and Vajrayana.

I'm starting to think of Vajrayana as a subset of Tantra. Especially because it was clear from this session that many of the Dzogchen practices seem to be labeled "tantras", even though they are not Vajrayana tantras. At several times he stressed the differences between the Vajrayana approach and the Dzogchen approach.

I am curious to know if there where any specific techniques, strategies or approaches that helped you get through the "unprocessed attachments and karma"? It seems like from a Dzogchen point of view, this is where trekchod would come in, even though it is a subject I know very little about.

I was just being flippant. I think it is the sort of thing a teacher likely prescribes for some and not others. In my case it was effective, I think.

During my Ngondro my father died. I thought I was a pretty sorted out cat, but was not ready for all of my unresolved issues around our relationship (that I thought I didn't have) coming up. I stopped practicing at all for a period, took medication for depression and dug myself a mental hole to moulder in. My wonderful wife had the good sense to keep pointing out all of my clinging (which I was not in a place to see), and when I was able to let go of all of the expectations about what the dead man needed to posthumously do for me I got on much better with things. Amongst other ingredients, I credit this turn of events for having precipitated my non-duality experience.

I am quite sure now that if I had stuck with doing shiné every day at least, I would have got through it all much faster. My recommendation is to NOT do it how I did, but to simplify practice and sit in shiné/zazen through the difficult bits.