Showing posts with label Longchenpa. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Longchenpa. Show all posts

 “Learn to see appearances are like space, like 8 similes of illusions*.” - John Tan 

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Eight similes of illusion

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The eight similes of illusion (Tib. སྒྱུ་མའི་དཔེ་བརྒྱད་, gyumé pé gyé, Wyl. sgyu ma'i dpe brgyad) are (in the order in which they appear in Longchenpa's Finding Comfort and Ease in the Illusoriness of Things):

Dream: like a dream, objects perceived with the five senses are not there, but they appear through delusion

Magical illusion: like a magic illusion, things are made to appear due to the temporary coming together of causes and conditions

Hallucination or trompe-l'oeil: like a hallucination, things appear, yet there is nothing there

Mirage: like a mirage, things appear, but they are not real

Echo: like an echo, things can be perceived, but there is nothing there, either inside or outside

City of gandharvas: like a city of gandharvas, there is neither a dwelling nor anyone to dwell

Reflection: like a reflection, things appear, but have no reality of their own

Apparition: like an apparition, there are different types of appearances, but they are not really there


When Longchenpa talks about space, he wasn’t referring to some space like awareness as background of phenomena. He’s talk about the empty nature of spontaneous presence, primordially pure, vivid yet empty, luminous and non-arisen, free from the extremes of existence and non-existence, all phenomena are equivalent to space and illusion. (Flipping through some books in the Buddhist bookstore, Longchenpa and Milarepa books caught my eye)

  • Geovani Geo
    And... can this "space" be other then "no-otherness"; where no separate autonomous "no-otherness" can be found?
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    • Soh Wei Yu
      Geovani Geo Dzogchen teacher Acarya Malcolm Smith wrote years ago:
      “In the basis (Tibetan: གཞི, Wylie: gzhi) there were neutral awarenesses (sh shes pa lung ma bstan) that did not recognize themselves. (Dzogchen texts actually do not distinguish whether this neutral awareness is one or multiple.) This non-recognition was the innate ignorance. Due to traces of action and affliction from a previous universe, the basis became stirred and the Five Pure Lights shone out. When a neutral awareness recognized the lights as its own display, that was Samantabhadra (immediate liberation without the performance of virtue). Other neutral awarenesses did not recognize the lights as their own display, and thus imputed “other” onto the lights. This imputation of “self” and “other” was the imputing ignorance. This ignorance started sentient beings and samsara (even without non-virtue having been committed). Yet everything is illusory, since the basis never displays as anything other than the five lights.”
      Kyle Dixon:
      “I’m obviously preferable to the Dzogchen system because I started there and although branching out, my primary interest has remained there. But I do appreciate the run-down of avidyā or ignorance in the Dzogchen system because it is tiered and accounts for this disparity I am addressing.
      There are two or three levels of ignorance which are more like aspects of our delusion regarding the nature of phenomena. The point of interest in that is the separation of what is called “innate” (or “connate”) ignorance, from what is called “imputing ignorance.”
      The imputing ignorance is the designating of various entities, dimension of experience and so on. And one’s identity results from that activity.
      The connate ignorance is the failure to correctly apprehend the nature of phenomena. The very non-recognition of the way things really are.
      This is important because you can have the connate ignorance remain in tact without the presence of the imputing ignorance.
      This separation is not even apparent through the stilling of imputation like in śamatha. But it can be made readily apparent in instances where you awaken from sleep, perhaps in a strange location, on vacation etc., or even just awakening from a deep sleep. There can be a period of moments where you do not realize where you are right yet, and then suddenly it all comes back, where you are, what you have planned for the day, where you need to be, etc.,
      In those initial moments you are still conscious and perceiving appearances, and there is still an innate experience of the room being external and objects being something over-there, separate from oneself. That is because this fundamental error in recognition of the nature of phenomena is a deep conditioning that creates the artificial bifurcation of inner and outer experiential dimensions, even without the activity of imputation.”
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