If this site provides value to you and your practice, please consider donating a small amount to help with the hosting fees.
Welcome, Guest
Username: Password: Remember me
  • Page:
  • 1
  • 2

TOPIC: NOW

NOW 05 Mar 2017 16:00 #106216

Hi Folks!
Just saying 'hello' and wishing all well in your experiences. :)
Been quite a while since I last posted here. This is a new 'Topic' and probably a little wasteful of me to start a new topic to say 'hello' but might drop some comments here from time to time.
Best wishes, Rod
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Kacchapa, every3rdthought

NOW 05 Mar 2017 16:14 #106217

Hey Rod! Long time. I hope you are well!
Last Edit: 05 Mar 2017 16:14 by Russell.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Rod

NOW 05 Mar 2017 16:19 #106218

Hey Russell! Yes going really well - as happy as one can be in an equanimous way :lol: How are you going? Hope its going well for you too :)
The administrator has disabled public write access.

NOW 06 Mar 2017 15:23 #106232

Wow, nice to see you here, Rod. Don't be a stranger!
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Rod

NOW 06 Mar 2017 18:36 #106234

Welcome back, I hope!
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Rod

NOW 06 Mar 2017 21:01 #106235

Hello!
The administrator has disabled public write access.

NOW 07 Mar 2017 21:27 #106240

Hi Chris,Tom and Nadav - great to connect again - will try to post more often (than once every couple of years! :lol: ) Practice has never stopped and is now dzogchen which resonates although a little hard to describe in words. :unsure:
Last Edit: 07 Mar 2017 21:29 by Rod.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Andy

NOW 08 Mar 2017 11:06 #106249

Hey there, Rod. Good to hear from you again. Out of curiosity, how did you get involved with dzogchen? Was there much to unlearn for you?
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Rod

NOW 09 Mar 2017 13:23 #106259

Hi Andy,
Thanks - well I found that as practice continued after 4th path, perception kept expanding intuitively letting go more and opening more. It took a couple of years of floating around in bliss for the flow to start moving again. I had been drawn to Mahamudra and Dzogchen inevitably came up - it resonated very much by explaining what I found to be unexplainable about experience and in a way 'validated' what I was experiencing (some patterns still play through - needing validation :) ).

So to your question about 'un-learning' - Theravada based pragmatic dharma still forms a wonderful basis.... from which to forget everything or remember everything/nothing... (at this point I could launch into a whole page on paradoxical statements that Dzogchen is replete with! :lol: ). I guess the solid 'work' done in the theravada practice keeps any ego intellectual patterns/ghosts from re-grouping when confounded by the utter emptiness, meaninglessness and yet richness of experience explored in dzogchen. Chogyam Rinpoche writes about the interrelatedness and importance of the different yanas on the path of awakening but he also acknowledges the potential within each to awaken completely as well - everyone is coming from a different position of delusion I guess - whatever resonates.
Last Edit: 09 Mar 2017 15:48 by Rod.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Andy, every3rdthought, Mike , Ranger

NOW 28 Jun 2017 16:33 #107107

ocean-photography-waves-water-light-warren-keelan-08.jpg
Last Edit: 28 Jun 2017 16:37 by Rod.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Andy, Kacchapa, Ranger

NOW 11 Aug 2018 23:19 #109552

Ha, this would be the first thing written on this thread for quite a while. Tried to write things occasionally but its funny when reading back over what's been written and deleting it as the need to say something passes - lets see how far it gets this time. This seems to be a summary of the past few years (not exactly in keeping with the topic :P )

Reading MCTB2 after several years getting into Dzogchen has been interesting, as MCBT1 was one of the big catalysts leading directly and quickly to an intense daily/hourly practice and the subsequent transformations that followed. Once these cycles/paths neatly folded up leaving a fundamentally changed perspective without centre, what's followed over the years has been expansion, letting go and acceptance, to integrate and 'know' what was realised (not intellectually of course).

Over this time, Dzogchen resonated and still does as it directly points to that constant awareness/knowing underlying all experiences as those experiences, experiencer and experiencing here/now, that increasingly prominent sense of always being 'on'. Not long into this phase a question persisted about how Theravada deals with this experience and beyond? Looking over the journey, its curious how such a powerful framework could so suddenly appear to be of no further use, the jhanas that had been so helpful, seemed to hold no purpose anymore (Yes, the boat across the river metaphor!). This change was stunning - like most of this journey its a case of 'be careful what you wish for' with diligent practice (and sometimes without) it delivers! Returning to MCBT2, it was interesting to read the section on 'integration' where Daniel's descriptions resonate as its realised there is no structure, no answer, no question, no prescribed way forward - thats the point, everything just neatly folds up, cancels itself out and then isn't nor is not isn't either, absolutely! (language doesn't work here) :lol: Experience continues and the dance of relative and absolute together goes on as integration, expansion, acceptance etc continue.

Since then, so much has changed on the relative living level too with a significant alignment of circumstances to what more naturally suits - big life changes happened smoothly, with minimal drama and continue with all this only seen in retrospect at how mis-aligned the lifestyle was and then quickly followed by a flood of gratitude.

Its at this point the index finger hovers over the delete button :) not thinking this piece is particularly useful but will leave it since its been so long since the last entry - which was just a picture :) Maybe something more helpful/meaningful will come up soon.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Chris Marti, Tom Otvos, nadav, Andy, Laurel Carrington, Kalle Ylitalo, Michael V, Ranger

NOW 12 Aug 2018 10:24 #109556

Hmm....

I don't see Theravada as being useless at any stage of spiritual development. It seems to point to the same things all the other Buddhist methodologies point to. Yes, I can see where it's nice to deviate from your original Theravada practice. I've done that, too. But it's also relevant to return to Theravada and see that it's got all the same insights, practices and results. Maybe the Pragmatic Dharma version of Theravada pushes us too hard in the beginning? Maybe its reputation as the "Lower Vehicle" causes us to be predisposed to view it as a beginner's practice? Here's a test - read Ajahn Amaro. Anything at all, but especially "Small Boat, Great Mountain."

YMMV, as always.

:)
Last Edit: 12 Aug 2018 10:24 by Chris Marti.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Laurel Carrington, Rod

NOW 12 Aug 2018 12:10 #109560

I’m glad you didn’t press the cancel button, Rod! But speaking of cancelling, it does often seem that thoughts cancel themselves almost as soon as they are expressed, being like everything else empty—

I have also experienced the sense that Theravada seemed useless post-fourth, and stopped practicing for a long time, except here and there. I just plain didn’t know what to do. Then there have been people like Noah who’ve been full steam ahead. I’ve recently caught up with some of his material out of interest in his motivations and what he tried to do. It seems to me that people who’ve gone on with Dgozchen often find it a good transition, but I also agree with Chris about returning to Theravadan roots. Pragmatic Dharma is in fact a major push to get to a goal, after which, what? Maybe exhaustion, confusion, a need for a moratorium.

I’ll check out Ajahn Amaro.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Rod

NOW 12 Aug 2018 13:42 #109561

Regarding both the “Now” & “participation” threads, these are the things I’ve discovered as options after reaching some supposed end game:

-“maxing out” the perception of emptiness in waking hours (going far beyond); awakened lucidity in dream & deep sleep; working with sexual energy & inner heat to “max out” the descent of the realization; visionary practices which pierce the illusion of physicality (via an unnamed mentor)

-mastering self expression / creativity / passion as an expression of emptiness (via another unnamed mentor)

-mastering joyful self discipline as an expression of emptiness — via mental modeling life decisions on the 4 noble truths (via my teacher Dhammarato)

These are all things which can be worked on from the vantage point of fun & play- even after one is “out of ones own way”, “seen the elephant”, “doneness”, “knowing dependent origination”, “fourth path”, etc.
Last Edit: 12 Aug 2018 13:52 by Noah.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Chris Marti, Laurel Carrington, Rod, Michael V

NOW 12 Aug 2018 16:48 #109562

Let's be honest with ourselves and each other - there is no end to human development. There is no "final" to this practice. There is always something more to do, to go deeper, to see the subtleties, to find a new hot button we didn't know we had, to uncover old wounds, fears, and anxieties. It never ends. It's turtles, all the way down, at least until this life is over.
Last Edit: 12 Aug 2018 16:49 by Chris Marti.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Rod, Michael V

NOW 12 Aug 2018 17:47 #109564

Chris Marti wrote:
Let's be honest with ourselves and each other - there is no end to human development. There is no "final" to this practice. There is always something more to do, to go deeper, to see the subtleties, to find a new hot button we didn't know we had, to uncover old wounds, fears, and anxieties. It never ends. It's turtles, all the way down, at least until this life is over.

So when advanced practitioners/teachers/notable figures within prag dharma occasionally drop the D-word, is that referring to the absence of the previous motivating factor(s) for practice? Daniel seemed to have a somewhat technical understanding of his doneness based on path stuff , not sure about Sobol, etc.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Chris Marti, Rod

NOW 12 Aug 2018 17:59 #109565

I can only speak for myself, but the "done" word for me meant that the overwhelming drive to figure "this" out went away. I stopped being obsessed with practice for a while. Then I went back to practicing. You know, after the ecstasy the laundry. That's true.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Laurel Carrington, Rod, Michael V

NOW 12 Aug 2018 18:14 #109566

Damn, I knew I should have deleted it! :lol:

Thanks Chris - yes I have Ajahn Amaro's excellent book and read it a few times - the last time a couple of months ago. Reading through it really has helped to validate the experience. Actually, just on 'validation', this has been a big theme over the past few years - since this has been a solitary path, there has been a tendency to look for examples and evidence that validate the experience as it is now, as I did not belong to a sangha or group that I could relate in. Interesting pattern.
Anyway, back to the point - finding minimal treatment of the experience I have now in Theravada I compared the Theravada descriptions of known territory with my own experiences and then tried to identify where in the Vajrayana similar descriptions occur (mostly Dzogchen). The main reason I was interested in this was to try and work out if possible where to pick up with Dzogchen along the way - It has a big emphasis on preliminary practices and that appears to be aligned with the pre-stream entry practices in Theravada. Anyway, it led me to look for 'cross over' teachings - mostly finding them from the Theravada perspective such as Ajahn Amaro's great book and also Ajahn Chah's teachings have leanings in that direction too. Researching further I also found that up until a few hundred years ago, Theravada did have Vajrayana tantric practices but for politico-social reasons, it was discouraged and eventually erased from the mainstream Theravada of today. vividness.live/2013/11/28/tantric-therav...nd-modern-vajrayana/ . The point of this was not to go practice tantric Theravada but to examine the now seemingly, narrowing gaps between them to understand why Theravada practice as I did it, no longer seemed to be of interest and seemed not to have a facility for what I was experiencing, or at least that I could find. Another reason is that Dzogchen has a big emphasis on gurus (guru yoga) and teachers empowered to impart transmissions as a key part of the path (some would say mandatory) - this is something I cannot relate to and even if I did, am so far away from being in sustained presence of one of these people, its not viable. So don't get me wrong - I owe a tremendous debt to the theravada teachings, alot of blood, sweat and tears were dissolved by them, they still appeal and resonate and am keen to find some facility in them for where things are now - so definitely not discounting them - I'll read Ajahn Amaro's book again :)

Thanks Laurel - Yes - Nice to compare notes on that - there has been a long period of not knowing what to do except just 'be' rather than doing busy practices for which there was no more drive to do. But I also am aware that habituated perspectives can return and cloud the view (but luckily now, its easy to snap back out of it). As you suggest, maybe there is no 'free lunch' with this thing - my passage through the paths was fast and pretty enjoyable actually - but it took alot of energy and massive changes internally and in life in a short time. Maybe its spiritual exhaustion - I did experience a 'bliss out' for the 2 years immediately after that last big shift, (4th path as it was called) which was like a wonderful holiday and gradually I came back to ground, but maybe this is all just a recovery period before picking up to continue...whatever that means :) Either way, there is still a fundamental contentment that persists beneath it all.

Noah, thanks for these practice ideas - before asking any questions, I will look into your threads more to understand the details. From what you describe they look like great frameworks to 'test drive' the new perspective to integrate it and become familiar with its attributes - with the landscape.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Chris Marti, Laurel Carrington, Michael V

NOW 12 Aug 2018 18:15 #109567

Chris, yes I absolutely agree - for 2 years or longer I felt no need, no drive to practice - trying to practice just didn't make sense which was a stark contrast to the driven intensity that preceded that shift. The expanding, accepting, integrating etc etc, never is finished certainly not in my experience, because even in that state, there was still integrating and expanding going on, just under its own momentum, so to speak, and it continues today regardless of my view on Theravada or Dzgochen etc. :cheer:
Last Edit: 12 Aug 2018 18:20 by Rod.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Chris Marti, Laurel Carrington

NOW 12 Aug 2018 18:30 #109568

Rod, David Chapman has a number of very nice websites, doesn't he? I like the thoroughness and critical thinking behind everything he does.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Rod

NOW 12 Aug 2018 18:57 #109569

Chris- yes I also really like his approach :)
The administrator has disabled public write access.

NOW 12 Aug 2018 19:04 #109572

Ha! By the way I just realised....I now live in Ottawa, Canada, dropping in to Toronto, NYC, Chicago and occasionally Minnesota for work - not too far from a few of the folks on this site I believe. So might be fun to catch up when next over your way :) or let me know if you come to Ottawa (its a bit out of the way but Montreal is also just down the road too).
The administrator has disabled public write access.

NOW 12 Aug 2018 19:10 #109574

Let me know when you come to Chicago. I'll buy dinner :cheer:
The administrator has disabled public write access.

NOW 12 Aug 2018 19:13 #109575

Thanks Chris, will do! would be great to catch up again :)
The administrator has disabled public write access.

NOW 13 Aug 2018 03:11 #109584

Rod wrote:

Noah, thanks for these practice ideas - before asking any questions, I will look into your threads more to understand the details. From what you describe they look like great frameworks to 'test drive' the new perspective to integrate it and become familiar with its attributes - with the landscape.

fwiw, this thread is my attempt at being concise & filtering out the chaff

awakenetwork.org/forum/111-personal-prac...oah-s-monthly-update
The administrator has disabled public write access.
  • Page:
  • 1
  • 2
Time to create page: 0.287 seconds
Powered by Kunena Forum