Mahamudra and Emptiness – An Experiential Approach

One day the great master Padampa Sangye asked his students to express their realization. Lama Charchung said:

Discarding Guru and Buddha together,
I can’t find such a thing as faith or devotion!
Destroying both divine Dharma and worldly opinion,
I have no effort or practice!
Mixing Buddhas together with sentient beings,
I can’t find anything to accept or reject!
I don’t know how to speak of realization!
Ask those of Central Tibet to explain!
~from Lion of the Siddhas: The Life and Teachings of Padampa Sangye (trans. David Molk)

Lama Mipham (1846-1912), a great teacher in the lineage to which I belong, spelled out 4 stages of realization that apply to both Mahamudra and Dzogchen:

1. All appearance resolves into consciousness.
2.  Consciousness resolves into emptiness.
3. Emptiness resolves into awareness.
4. The union of bliss and emptiness, or bliss and awareness.

In the  talk reproduced below, inspired by the  above quote from Lama Charchung, and working with Lama Mipham’s 4 stages, I attempt to speak experientially about consciousness resolving into emptiness and realization in Mahamudra. This talk and discussion occurred at Real Dharma Sangha on December 6, 2012.

or download or listen by clicking here.

Transcending Claustrophobia and Seeing Things As They Are

Hal Blacker gives a talk on transcending claustrophobia by letting go of the need to impose one’s likes and dislikes on oneself and the world. This allows one to experience spaciousness and to see things as they are. The talk begins with a story about Chogyam Trungpa, Rinpoche, Hal’s first teacher, surrendering and literally transcending claustrophobia.

This talk was given on October 12, 2010 at Real Dharma Sangha, Fairfax.

If the audio player does not appear or work in your browser, download or listen here.

Anam Thubten Inaugurates the Real Dharma Sangha

On Tuesday, June 22, 2010, my beloved teacher, Anam Thubten, inaugurated the Real Dharma Sangha, appearing at our Tuesday night class, and speaking before a group of over 60 people. I was delighted—and, I think, so was everyone there—that Anam chose to speak about the  real meaning of “Real Dharma.” He told an anecdote in which, in the end, the real dharma—or the way— was revealed to be letting go of everything. You can hear the talk here (the talk begins after about 20 seconds of silence):

If you can’t use the flash player, click here:

Anam Thubten Real Dharma Talk 100622.mp3

Before his talk, as an opening ceremony and blessing for Real Dharma, Anam Thubten chanted the Heart Sutra, the concise and essential teaching on Prajnaparamita and Emptiness, in Tibetan. You can listen to his beautiful chanting here:

If you can’t use the flash player, click here:

Anam Thubten Heart Sutra 100622.mp3

Please enjoy, and may all benefit!