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Fall 2014 Shamatha, Vipashyana, Dream Yoga

B. Alan Wallace

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Fall 2014 Shamatha, Vipashyana, Dream Yoga
Fall 2014 Shamatha, Vipashyana, Dream Yoga

Fall 2014 Shamatha, Vipashyana, Dream Yoga

B. Alan Wallace

2
Followers
0
Plays
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About Us

This eight-week retreat will focus on three of the six transitional processes, namely:

  • the Transitional Process of Living, with teachings on śamatha and vipaśyanā,
  • the Transitional Process of Dreaming, with teachings on dream yoga, and
  • the Transitional Process of Meditation with teachings on Dzogchen meditation.

All these teachings will be based on the text The Profound Dharma of The Natural Emergence of the Peaceful and Wrathful from Enlightened Awareness Stage of Completion Instructions on the Six Transitional Processes, an “earth terma” of teachings by Padmasambhava, revealed by Karma Lingpa in the fourteen century.

The English translation of this text has been published under the title Natural Liberation: Padmasambhava’s Teachings on the Six Bardos, with commentary by Gyatrul Rinpoche and translated by B. Alan Wallace.

Latest Episodes

94 On The Journey to Sukhavati

As a bonus, at the end of our retreat Alan presented to us the teachings on Sukhavati from Karma Chagme. If you missed your chance for the three modes of achieving enlightenment, then it is definitely not Alan’s fault, with all the podcasts up to now you guys had your opportunities. If not, don’t start crying yet, there is still the light of hope on the Western horizon, and that’s Amitabha’s pure land. There are different levels of pure lands that can be reached by beings, depending on their abilities. If you have already achieved a high level of realization you have full choice. Would you like to be in Akanishta or is it not challenging enough for you to go there? Well, most of us might want to start trying with Sukhavati first, that is more within reach of ordinary beings who are still prone to mental afflictions. What could prevent you from going there are the five deeds of immediate retribution. But other than that, the entrance examination is comparatively easy. Once you ha...

-1 s2014 OCT 15
Comments
94 On The Journey to Sukhavati

93 Becoming A Child Of The Buddhas

What better way to end a retreat than with Shantideva’s beautiful verses about embracing bodhicitta! The verses cited today are often used for the liturgy when taking the bodhisattva precepts. Shantideva’s verses are not meant as a teaching to an audience, they are more like an invitation for us in the sense of the “Ehipassiko”, the “Come and see” of the Pali canon, and Shantideva invites us into his own mind with them. When you take the Pratimoksha or the Tantric precepts, you need to receive them through a certain lineage. The guru is the channel through which you receive the blessings and the guidance of the Dharmakaya when taking these vows. The Bodhisattva precepts are an exception, you can take them even without a guru being present. The Dharmakaya and therefore the Buddha is present everywhere, and he himself will be your witness. You can then also imagine all sentient beings being present as your witnesses, too, because they are the ones you are going to serve. When we...

41 MIN2014 OCT 15
Comments
93 Becoming A Child Of The Buddhas

92 Achieving Buddhahood By Doing Nothing…ha ha

In the silent meditation we are once again asked to balance earth and sky and to proceed at our own pace. After the meditation we finish the transitional process of meditation. The text shows how to get to the point from which you no longer affirm virtue nor do you reject non-virtue; you do not visualize anything; nothing is outside of it. Whereas objects are illuminated on the coarse level by substrate consciousness, on the deepest level they are illuminated by rigpa in the space of all phenomena. However, in rigpa there is no duality between the space and the light illuminating it. The process of developing stable samadhi to realizing rigpa is, simply put, an ever-deepening release of grasping: it might start with a five year-old with a monkey on its belly to feel the breath and release all control over it, and then years later you release all grasping (once again, it sounds pretty simple :)). And once you dwell in rigpa you see how all appearances arise to assist you in your path...

-1 s2014 OCT 14
Comments
92 Achieving Buddhahood By Doing Nothing…ha ha

91 Four Rivers Flowing Into One Resolve

On the penultimate stage to the cultivation of bodhicitta we return to the great resolve: I shall free all sentient beings. Alan points how that the deeper this promise sinks into you, the clearer it becomes that it only makes sense from the perspective of rigpa. Also, after having cultivated great compassion you are bound to go on to the other 3 greats - you no longer have a choice. Then the four are like four rivers coming together to a massive stream that will take you directly to bodhicitta. And once again it is important to realize that our perspective is that of rigpa, which is said to be one (in the sense that it’s the one truth) but at the same time infinite (because it manifests in every sentient being) - it’s neither singular nor plural. Alan then quotes Shantideva to inspire us for the meditation. After the meditation Alan mentions how there are two doors leading to the same path: either you cultivate relative bodhicitta and it will lead you to ultimate bodhicitta, or y...

-1 s2014 OCT 14
Comments
91 Four Rivers Flowing Into One Resolve

90 An Approximation of Pure Land in Sight?

At the beginning Alan shares extremely uplifting news as what concerns “Project Contemplative Observatory”. After having failed to build one in India and in Santa Barbara it finally looks as if a promising piece of land in Tuscany is available. The land is cheap and big enough to support not only a contemplative observatory but also a mind center. With retreatants maybe even planting organic food there, it would truly be as close as we get in samsara to a pure land! After a silent meditation we return to the text. Alan explains that the four great types of liberation can only manifest once you completely stop all conceptualization. These four types are then described as: 1) primordial liberation, which means that you don’t need to remedy anything and take no external refuge 2) liberation by itself, because after you have investigated enough (practiced vipashyana) you find clear insight and you then simply release into that insight 3) instantaneous liberation 4) complete liberatio...

-1 s2014 OCT 13
Comments
90 An Approximation of Pure Land in Sight?

89 Great Equanimity, and the Importance of Views

Alan starts by talking about his last dharma talk and once more making clear that his anger was not directed towards any person, but simply towards a certain view. This is important to stress because in the West often a view is conflated with a person. Alan emphasizes how important views are and they are clearly the most horrible non-virtue of all because they justify any kind of behavior. That is why also Dharma talks can be very intense and unpleasant. If a certain view is being burned and you identify with that view (e. g. that the mind is the brain and your awareness is a cartoon, thus, you are not a sentient being but a mindless robot), the dharma talk will not be comfortable for you and the lama might manifest as wrathful. As what concerns great equanimity we are asked to release all attachment to the near, which means our views. But not only that; we should also release the extreme of peace and the aversion to the world of becoming, that is, as much as we like to be in a peac...

-1 s2014 OCT 13
Comments
89 Great Equanimity, and the Importance of Views

88 Turning Up the Heat on Learned Ignorance

The session begins with a guided meditation on variations of taking the mind as the path, beginning with maintaining peripheral awareness of fluctuations of the breath before single-pointedly focusing awareness on the space of the mind and whatever arises there. Alan then returns to page 182 of Natural Liberation for further commentary on the lines we concluded with yesterday, “Due to being obscured by the three kinds of ignorance, they do not know the manner of their liberation.” Viewed from the perspective of rigpa, even hatred will self-release without any additional antidote. Before we reach that sage, however, it is important to maintain conscientiousness along with mindfulness and introspection in our practice. Conscientiousness is established in non-attachment, non-hostility, and non-delusion, and coupled with enthusiasm, it expresses itself as intelligent, ethical concern. Shantideva discusses conscientiousness in the fourth chapter of A Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of ...

-1 s2014 OCT 11
Comments
88 Turning Up the Heat on Learned Ignorance

87 Great Mudita

“Why couldn’t all beings never be parted from sublime happiness free from suffering?” This question beginning the meditation on Great Mudita, Alan says, is a synthesis of great loving kindness and great compassion. After contemplating the ingredients necessary to make ordinary happiness sublime happiness and the causes that lead to it, recall next the kindness of others whose actions helped bring you to this point on the path. In the Dzogchen view, when traced to its deepest source,the true agent of all their actions as well as all your own is Samantabhadra. Recognizing this, the wish to repay the kindness of all beings naturally arises and what better way is there to express your gratitude than with the aspiration that they all actually will realize sublime happiness free of suffering. The aspiration leads to the authentic and realistic resolve to personally insure that it happens and and the meditation concludes with the supplication of blessings from your guru and the awakened...

-1 s2014 OCT 11
Comments
87 Great Mudita

86 Ripened and Liberated

Before the meditation, Alan elaborates on the importance of preliminary practices and the accumulation of merit in order to prepare the mind. However, that is not enough since merit can be lost, especially when generating anger towards a bodhisattva. Therefore, what are the signs that purification is happening? When one ventures into deeper practices, one can get some sense that obscurations are attenuating. Then, the practitioner gains serenity, inner calmness, contentment, composure, etc. This happens not only when everything goes well but even during bad times. Mental afflictions also arise but they have lost power. In brief, a clear sign of having accrued virtue is having an enduring and robust inspiration. When one takes seriously the preliminary practices and they bring about a transformation, then the practitioner is ripened and liberated. The ripening part comes from the preliminary practices, and the fruition of that is liberation. After comes a guided mediation on taking t...

-1 s2014 OCT 10
Comments
86 Ripened and Liberated

85 Bringing wisdom to the cultivation of great loving-kindness

Alan highlights the practice of balancing earth and sky. The core of the practice is to develop a deepening sense of ease, relaxation and groundedness, while at the same time maintaining and accentuating clarity. Alan explains how he started to practice earth with the Theravada tradition and how everything unfolds until getting to dzogchen. In this session, we return to great loving-kindness. Alan quotes a sutra from the Pali canon in which Buddha addresses for lay people the types of happiness they might cultivate and realize: ownership, wealth, freedom from debt, and blamelessness. The last one directly relates to genuine happiness. Buddha encourages his disciples to find out what really constitutes true happiness and based on this understanding, to pursue it. Once again, it is about wisdom. Alan also quotes another sutra in which Buddha describes three types of happiness: blamelessness and contentment; the one gained from samadhi; and the supreme happiness of complete freedom thr...

-1 s2014 OCT 10
Comments
85 Bringing wisdom to the cultivation of great loving-kindness

Latest Episodes

94 On The Journey to Sukhavati

As a bonus, at the end of our retreat Alan presented to us the teachings on Sukhavati from Karma Chagme. If you missed your chance for the three modes of achieving enlightenment, then it is definitely not Alan’s fault, with all the podcasts up to now you guys had your opportunities. If not, don’t start crying yet, there is still the light of hope on the Western horizon, and that’s Amitabha’s pure land. There are different levels of pure lands that can be reached by beings, depending on their abilities. If you have already achieved a high level of realization you have full choice. Would you like to be in Akanishta or is it not challenging enough for you to go there? Well, most of us might want to start trying with Sukhavati first, that is more within reach of ordinary beings who are still prone to mental afflictions. What could prevent you from going there are the five deeds of immediate retribution. But other than that, the entrance examination is comparatively easy. Once you ha...

-1 s2014 OCT 15
Comments
94 On The Journey to Sukhavati

93 Becoming A Child Of The Buddhas

What better way to end a retreat than with Shantideva’s beautiful verses about embracing bodhicitta! The verses cited today are often used for the liturgy when taking the bodhisattva precepts. Shantideva’s verses are not meant as a teaching to an audience, they are more like an invitation for us in the sense of the “Ehipassiko”, the “Come and see” of the Pali canon, and Shantideva invites us into his own mind with them. When you take the Pratimoksha or the Tantric precepts, you need to receive them through a certain lineage. The guru is the channel through which you receive the blessings and the guidance of the Dharmakaya when taking these vows. The Bodhisattva precepts are an exception, you can take them even without a guru being present. The Dharmakaya and therefore the Buddha is present everywhere, and he himself will be your witness. You can then also imagine all sentient beings being present as your witnesses, too, because they are the ones you are going to serve. When we...

41 MIN2014 OCT 15
Comments
93 Becoming A Child Of The Buddhas

92 Achieving Buddhahood By Doing Nothing…ha ha

In the silent meditation we are once again asked to balance earth and sky and to proceed at our own pace. After the meditation we finish the transitional process of meditation. The text shows how to get to the point from which you no longer affirm virtue nor do you reject non-virtue; you do not visualize anything; nothing is outside of it. Whereas objects are illuminated on the coarse level by substrate consciousness, on the deepest level they are illuminated by rigpa in the space of all phenomena. However, in rigpa there is no duality between the space and the light illuminating it. The process of developing stable samadhi to realizing rigpa is, simply put, an ever-deepening release of grasping: it might start with a five year-old with a monkey on its belly to feel the breath and release all control over it, and then years later you release all grasping (once again, it sounds pretty simple :)). And once you dwell in rigpa you see how all appearances arise to assist you in your path...

-1 s2014 OCT 14
Comments
92 Achieving Buddhahood By Doing Nothing…ha ha

91 Four Rivers Flowing Into One Resolve

On the penultimate stage to the cultivation of bodhicitta we return to the great resolve: I shall free all sentient beings. Alan points how that the deeper this promise sinks into you, the clearer it becomes that it only makes sense from the perspective of rigpa. Also, after having cultivated great compassion you are bound to go on to the other 3 greats - you no longer have a choice. Then the four are like four rivers coming together to a massive stream that will take you directly to bodhicitta. And once again it is important to realize that our perspective is that of rigpa, which is said to be one (in the sense that it’s the one truth) but at the same time infinite (because it manifests in every sentient being) - it’s neither singular nor plural. Alan then quotes Shantideva to inspire us for the meditation. After the meditation Alan mentions how there are two doors leading to the same path: either you cultivate relative bodhicitta and it will lead you to ultimate bodhicitta, or y...

-1 s2014 OCT 14
Comments
91 Four Rivers Flowing Into One Resolve

90 An Approximation of Pure Land in Sight?

At the beginning Alan shares extremely uplifting news as what concerns “Project Contemplative Observatory”. After having failed to build one in India and in Santa Barbara it finally looks as if a promising piece of land in Tuscany is available. The land is cheap and big enough to support not only a contemplative observatory but also a mind center. With retreatants maybe even planting organic food there, it would truly be as close as we get in samsara to a pure land! After a silent meditation we return to the text. Alan explains that the four great types of liberation can only manifest once you completely stop all conceptualization. These four types are then described as: 1) primordial liberation, which means that you don’t need to remedy anything and take no external refuge 2) liberation by itself, because after you have investigated enough (practiced vipashyana) you find clear insight and you then simply release into that insight 3) instantaneous liberation 4) complete liberatio...

-1 s2014 OCT 13
Comments
90 An Approximation of Pure Land in Sight?

89 Great Equanimity, and the Importance of Views

Alan starts by talking about his last dharma talk and once more making clear that his anger was not directed towards any person, but simply towards a certain view. This is important to stress because in the West often a view is conflated with a person. Alan emphasizes how important views are and they are clearly the most horrible non-virtue of all because they justify any kind of behavior. That is why also Dharma talks can be very intense and unpleasant. If a certain view is being burned and you identify with that view (e. g. that the mind is the brain and your awareness is a cartoon, thus, you are not a sentient being but a mindless robot), the dharma talk will not be comfortable for you and the lama might manifest as wrathful. As what concerns great equanimity we are asked to release all attachment to the near, which means our views. But not only that; we should also release the extreme of peace and the aversion to the world of becoming, that is, as much as we like to be in a peac...

-1 s2014 OCT 13
Comments
89 Great Equanimity, and the Importance of Views

88 Turning Up the Heat on Learned Ignorance

The session begins with a guided meditation on variations of taking the mind as the path, beginning with maintaining peripheral awareness of fluctuations of the breath before single-pointedly focusing awareness on the space of the mind and whatever arises there. Alan then returns to page 182 of Natural Liberation for further commentary on the lines we concluded with yesterday, “Due to being obscured by the three kinds of ignorance, they do not know the manner of their liberation.” Viewed from the perspective of rigpa, even hatred will self-release without any additional antidote. Before we reach that sage, however, it is important to maintain conscientiousness along with mindfulness and introspection in our practice. Conscientiousness is established in non-attachment, non-hostility, and non-delusion, and coupled with enthusiasm, it expresses itself as intelligent, ethical concern. Shantideva discusses conscientiousness in the fourth chapter of A Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of ...

-1 s2014 OCT 11
Comments
88 Turning Up the Heat on Learned Ignorance

87 Great Mudita

“Why couldn’t all beings never be parted from sublime happiness free from suffering?” This question beginning the meditation on Great Mudita, Alan says, is a synthesis of great loving kindness and great compassion. After contemplating the ingredients necessary to make ordinary happiness sublime happiness and the causes that lead to it, recall next the kindness of others whose actions helped bring you to this point on the path. In the Dzogchen view, when traced to its deepest source,the true agent of all their actions as well as all your own is Samantabhadra. Recognizing this, the wish to repay the kindness of all beings naturally arises and what better way is there to express your gratitude than with the aspiration that they all actually will realize sublime happiness free of suffering. The aspiration leads to the authentic and realistic resolve to personally insure that it happens and and the meditation concludes with the supplication of blessings from your guru and the awakened...

-1 s2014 OCT 11
Comments
87 Great Mudita

86 Ripened and Liberated

Before the meditation, Alan elaborates on the importance of preliminary practices and the accumulation of merit in order to prepare the mind. However, that is not enough since merit can be lost, especially when generating anger towards a bodhisattva. Therefore, what are the signs that purification is happening? When one ventures into deeper practices, one can get some sense that obscurations are attenuating. Then, the practitioner gains serenity, inner calmness, contentment, composure, etc. This happens not only when everything goes well but even during bad times. Mental afflictions also arise but they have lost power. In brief, a clear sign of having accrued virtue is having an enduring and robust inspiration. When one takes seriously the preliminary practices and they bring about a transformation, then the practitioner is ripened and liberated. The ripening part comes from the preliminary practices, and the fruition of that is liberation. After comes a guided mediation on taking t...

-1 s2014 OCT 10
Comments
86 Ripened and Liberated

85 Bringing wisdom to the cultivation of great loving-kindness

Alan highlights the practice of balancing earth and sky. The core of the practice is to develop a deepening sense of ease, relaxation and groundedness, while at the same time maintaining and accentuating clarity. Alan explains how he started to practice earth with the Theravada tradition and how everything unfolds until getting to dzogchen. In this session, we return to great loving-kindness. Alan quotes a sutra from the Pali canon in which Buddha addresses for lay people the types of happiness they might cultivate and realize: ownership, wealth, freedom from debt, and blamelessness. The last one directly relates to genuine happiness. Buddha encourages his disciples to find out what really constitutes true happiness and based on this understanding, to pursue it. Once again, it is about wisdom. Alan also quotes another sutra in which Buddha describes three types of happiness: blamelessness and contentment; the one gained from samadhi; and the supreme happiness of complete freedom thr...

-1 s2014 OCT 10
Comments
85 Bringing wisdom to the cultivation of great loving-kindness
hmly
himalayaプレミアムへようこそ聴き放題のオーディオブックをお楽しみください。