I would like to announce two things:


1) The Awakening to Reality Practice Guide by Nafis Rahman: https://app.box.com/s/zc0suu4dil01xbgirm2r0rmnzegxaitq


2) AtR Guide - abridged version by Pablo Pintabona [partially done, halfway done for Stage 5]: https://atr-abridgedguide.blogspot.com/2021/11/this-is-shortened-version-of-complete.html


I would like to thank these two individuals for their great and compassionate effort to make these compilations. I trust it will be of great benefit for spiritual aspirants who find benefit in the AtR materials.






Update: a Portugese translation is now available here http://www.awakeningtoreality.com/2022/08/translation-of-awakening-to-reality.html

 
I was contemplating on dependent arising and emptiness this morning, follow on a conversation with a friend ytd.. my inquiry goes -
**
When you see a flower,
ask, is the flower in my mind? is the flower out there apart from my mind? Is the flower in between mind and out there? where? where is the flower?🤨
When you hear a sound, ask,
Is the sound in my ear? in my mind? in my brain? in the radio? in the air? separated from my mind? is it independently floating? WHERE?🤨
when you touch a table, ask,
Is this touch, in my finger? in the table? in the between space? in my brain? in my mind? separated from mind? WHERE?🤨
Keep finding. See, Hear, Feel. The mind need to look to be satisfied. If not it keeps being ignorant.
*
Then you will see, There was never a SELF , self in buddhism means independent thing - singular, independent, one, substantial THING sitting outside or inside or any where in this 'world'.
For the sound to appear, the ear, radio, air, waves, mind, knowing, etc etc etc need to come together and there's a sound. lack of one and there is no sound.
-this is dependent arising.
But then where is it? what really is this that you are hearing? so vivid of an orchestra! but where?! 🤨
-That is Emptiness.
**
It's all just illusory. There, yet not there. Appear yet empty.
That is , the nature of reality.
You never needed to fear. You only wrongly thought it's all real.
You, John Tan, Tyler Jones and 16 others
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  • Yasmin El-Hakim
    wonderful investigation
    ❤️🙏

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    Rosina Marie
    That last part though ❤🙏

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    John Tan
    Yin Ling Luminous appearance that does not exist (med pa gsal snang)
    See whether u can find articles about "med pa gsal snang", I can't, maybe u can. 🤦
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    Yin Ling
    John Tan haha I will try , if cannot I will ask Soh Wei Yu the ever resourceful one 🤣

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    Yin Ling
    John Tan https://www.lionsroar.com/this-very-mind-empty-and-luminous/
    this one ok?
    This Very Mind, Empty and Luminous
    LIONSROAR.COM
    This Very Mind, Empty and Luminous
    This Very Mind, Empty and Luminous

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    John Tan
    Yin Ling yes very good except that it din use that phrase. But the explanation about analytical vs experiential (true) emptiness is good.👍.

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    Yin Ling
    John Tan that phrase i cannot find, too many tibetan words appear, cant read lol

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    Chae Cramb
    Try "par" instead of "pa". No articles, but you'll find a bunch of posts by Malcolm and Kyle if you google "med par gsal snang".

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Tsongkhapa short verse on his profound enlightenment to the truth.
***
In a short verse work composed as a letter to his first attendant, Tsakho Ngawang Drakpa, Tsongkhapa would
articulate this crucial point about the equation between emptiness and dependent origination:
When, with respect to all phenomena of saṃsāra and nirvāṇa,
You see that cause and effect never transgress their laws,
And when you have dismantled the focus of objectification,
At that point, you have entered the path that pleases the buddhas.
As long as the two understandings—
Of appearance, the regulated world of dependent origination,
And of emptiness, the absence of all standpoints—remain separate,
You have not realized the intent of the Sage.
However, at some point when, without alteration and at once,
The instant you see that dependent origination is undeceiving
If the entire object of grasping at certitude is dismantled,
At that point your analysis of the view is complete.
Furthermore, when appearance dispels the extreme of existence, And when emptiness dispels the extreme of nonexistence,
And you understand how emptiness arises as cause and effect, You will never be swayed by views grasping at extremes.
You, John Tan, William Lim and 11 others
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  • John Tan
    This is perhaps the most important point for me post anatta insight. So profound and deep.🙏

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    Yin Ling
    John Tan yes and you emphasise this repetitively so thank you.
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    John Tan
    Yin Ling yes. Tsongkhapa is familiar with emptiness free from all elaborations in traditional tibetan schools and in fact in his earlier days, he accepted this view. But many in the traditional schools see the ultimate that lacks sameness or difference, i.e, non-arisen of "sameness" of "difference" as literally "no" sameness or difference thinking that "oh ultimately they r just conceptual notions". Instead, Tsongkhapa pointed out that this "unestablished" free from elaborations means dependent arising, dependent on conditons, "this is, that is".

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    Yin Ling
    John Tan not sure I get it. soteriologically does it mean one don’t say all is ultimate just conceptual notions, and immobilise and say all is ultimately conceptual,
    but understand because of DO there is strong sense of causality and functionality?
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    John Tan
    Yin Ling sort of but not easy to articulate for it involves a very very fine and profound insight that Tsongkhapa is trying point out that is difficult to put into words.
    Just like when we say non-dual, there is a difference between a non-dual experience that subsumes object into an ultimate pure subject and the non-dual experience that recognize the non-arisen of "subject" and "object", aka, freedom from extremes in buddhism.
    Similarly, seeing through conceptual elaborations, is also not just a blanket elimination of conceptual symbols nor should we jump into hasty and careless conclusion too quickly asif "nothing happens" ultimately or a rejection of cause and effect. It may appear to be so and easy to jump into that conclusion.
    It involves several finer insights that include how conceptual notions and it's linguistic structure confuse the mind and how we can validly understand the nature of what appears after we understand these issues of conceptual elaborations for although they r conceptual elaborations, they r not elaborating "nonsense" as appearances inadvertently appear.
    And when u see that, u see the ultimate free from elaborations does not contradict "dependent arising", "arising" through cause and conditions. But not within my capacity to put into words. 🤦🤪
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    Yin Ling
    John Tan omg very deep haha. Ok I will let it simmer and see if I slowly get it.
    It is interesting also because Tsongkhapa did not really agree to his teacher Rendawa 4 levels of insights which what u said the above is Rendawa’s third level, according to what thupten Jinpa was teaching. I keep reading but i just don’t get it thoroughly so will leave it aside for now🥹

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    John Tan
    Yin Ling yeah just leave it aside first. Gelug do get overly analytical sometimes and as I m more into direct experiential insights so Iike u, I just let it simmers deep. Btw, which book r u referring to when u mentioned abt Thupten Jinpa's teaching?
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    Yin Ling
    John Tan https://wisdomexperience.org/courses/tsongkhapas-madhyamaka/
    I am attending this course. It’s in week 2 and Jinpa wrote his own notes I think. Can join any time
    Tsongkhapa's Madhyamaka - The Wisdom Experience
    WISDOMEXPERIENCE.ORG
    Tsongkhapa's Madhyamaka - The Wisdom Experience
    Tsongkhapa's Madhyamaka - The Wisdom Experience

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    Cheng Chen
    Yin Ling I believe the essence of JT’s summary of Tsongkhapa is a matter of directly embodying the the final view, as opposed to some logical deductive substitute. Ultimately what Tsongkhapa is offering is freedom at the end of logic as opposed to a reliance on it.
    For instance, one can have a total experience of pure evenness that appears to be similar to the so-called natural state, but really one just fell into the trap of a uni-polar nondualism. That is all phenomenon is luminous and there are no boundaries. And yet, subtly, there’s still a reliance on the primacy of nondual experience, a perversion of mind-only where one takes the philosophy literally as opposed to only as a tool.
    But even this is subtly distracting one from just being naturally normal, where all constructions, including a nondual reality is already-known. In the real natural state here or there and this or that are simple and self-known. It’s not a problem for this to be dependent on that nor objectivity to be dependent on subjectivity. There are merely natural functions of human cognition. Why would one make a problem if there isn’t one. Why try to forcefully dissolve all boundaries? To what end? So that one can abide in luminosity? Sounds like escapism to me…
    To be clear, though, it (the luminous nonduality) is NOT merely a mental, logical shortcut… you generally don’t get to complete self-luminous self-experience without going overboard with that one-sided nonduality first and then dropping that… but I digress.
    So, the point is not to solely dissolve all boundaries—albeit that’s fun and certainly important, a good parlor trick—the point is to just be cool. In freedom, there is no need to additionally deny nor depend on anything more than what is already known. That’s why they call it perfection, not because it’s actually perfect, but that there is no imperfection to begin with, so…
    “Just be cool.”
    —Tsongkhapa, 1357-1519

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    Cheng Chen
    Please correct if my reflection on the Tsongkhapa summary is off.
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    Yin Ling
    Cheng Chen haha thanks. I really don’t know enough to comment really , there’s something I don’t quite get with what John was trying to say. Need more merit I think .
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    Cheng Chen
    Yin Ling I realize that what I previously blasted out was too rough and unrefined. I’ve revised what I wrote to be more clear and relatable. Have another read-through!
    Also, you don’t lack merit. You just need to take more trips to the natural state.
    More faith and and humility probably will be of relative marginal benefit as compared to more direct trips to the natural state. I don’t deny “good merit” is needed for that, but let’s not fool ourselves into mistaking a description for a prescription…
    I suppose that’s why they call it the two accumulations… and you can guess which one I lack 😛

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    Tyler Jones
    John Tan do you consider this most crucial post-anatta insight fundamentally different from the other post-anatta insights discussed at length on the blog? Such as +A/maha/total exertion or spontaneous perfection? Does anyone other than Tsongkhapa and his followers clearly point to it?
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    John Tan
    Tyler Jones no. It does not differ +A and -A, the natural openness requires that understanding. Tsongkhapa is profoundly insightful and revolutionary in certain sense, unfortunately I m not familiar with his other followers. However imo what Tsongkhapa expounded cannot be understood by analysis alone, we can't logically deduced or induced what he said, it can only be experientially authenticated.

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    Cheng Chen
    Tylaaaaa Jone: yo I get that you were asking JT, so I’m not going to comment on his +/- thing model…
    But bro, nearly all writings of highly attained masters all get at this point one way or another. Tsongkhapa is just being lightly logical about it without going overboard, kinda hinting and reminding ya’ll to just…
    BE COOL!
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    William Albert
    Maybe it's the translation, but I really don't understand what they are trying to say.

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    Yin Ling
    William Albert I personally find the translation clear. and actually cannot be clearer. but it is profound yes.
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    Cheng Chen
    What part is confusing?
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