The Snow Lion Archive holds over articles from the 98 issues of the Snow Lion Newsletter that were published from — Here you will find news, author interviews, profiles, guest contributions and more.
Each article links to a PDF of the entire issue it appeared in. The following article is from the Spring, issue of the Snow Lion Newsletter and is for historical reference only. You can see this in context of the original newsletter here. The sutras describe each of the four meditative absorptions with a formulaic statement. The canonical description of the first meditative absorption is as follows: Separated from the objects of desire, separated from Embodying the essence of tantric practice, this text has been a central scripture in Tibetan Buddhism for well over a thousand years.
Meditations of the Heart
In terms of its goal, enlightened activity can be either supreme or common. Enlightenment happens unexpectedly, in the same way that we are often struck with wonder when we see whales jumping from the surface of the ocean. They take our breath away. Throughout the ages these kinds of experiences have often been experienced by meditators.
This is frequently noted in the Buddhist tradition. It often happens when we are least expecting it. Inner rest is the When we pray, what we are doing is invoking the spirit of devotion.
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Devotion is about no longer resisting anything. We are no longer trying to hold the composure of this illusory entity, ego or self.
Self is always collapsing and dissolving in each and every moment. When we try to construct and maintain the illusion of The Eight Kinds of Consciousness by Rangjung Dorje The Third Karmapa For the meditation on the nature of your own mind it is customary to ask your teacher for pointing-out instructions. Some practitioners are lucky enough to realize their true nature of mind straight away, whereas others merely perceive a sensation of it, a certain experience of the true nature of mind.
But if they don't know exactly how mind and the consciousnesses function, their experience will dissolve after a In this adaptation from his book Transcendent Wisdom now published as Perfecting Wisdom —translated and edited by B. Alan Wallace—he brings up qualms and gives his responses about what it means for things to be real or not real. Qualm: If it is an error to think of form and so forth as real, how can it be that we verifiably This excerpt describes the core of the spiritual path.
When awakening happens, there is no longer any desire to become someone other than who we are.
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Every previous idea of who we are vanishes and along with it the pain, guilt, and pride associated with our body. In Buddhism this is called no Simply, it works; the choice seems to be an empirical one, based on a long tradition of Buddhist practice. The governing principle seems to be that in systems asserting six consciousnesses, different conceptual consciousnesses of a similar type cannot operate simultaneously in the mental continuum of one person. Therefore, meditation on the inhalation and exhalation of the Kyabje Dudjom Rinpoche The last time I saw my root teacher, His Holiness Dudjom Rinpoche, his final instructions were for me to take care of the doctrine by teaching and establishing the Dharma.
He told me that since I have been educated in Dharma and have gained experience in retreat, it was now time One cannot become a Buddha without both compassionate action and nondual wisdom—and one cannot have these two types of paths without both of the two truths, conventional and ultimate.
If only emptiness existed and there were, in fact, no conventional truths, then there would be no living beings, no suffering to relieve; thus there would be no compassionate action; and thus there would be no buddhahood. Therefore, maintaining the compatibility of the two truths—the compatibility of emptiness and dependent arising—is Buddhism prescribes certain steps to help purify our misdeeds.
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Application of the following four powers is an essential technique to purify obscurations. The four powers are 1 remorse, 2 antidote, 3 resolution, and 4 refuge or reliance. An addiction emergency happens when we suddenly find ourselves about to repeat an addictive pattern, or even when we suddenly discover ourselves in the middle of it.
We need something to do right at that moment. For example, a smoker might find When should we counteract our difficult emotions, and when should we go with their energy? How we are advised to deal with our emotions varies according to which vehicle of Buddhism is in focus.
When dealing with strong emotions, a Vajrayana practitioner does not have to use deliberate means to stop them. Unlike in other systems, the Vajrayana provides What is the meaning of bodhichitta?
What is the significance of the Bodhisattva Vow? This is not just an academic debate, because it is Science shows that meditation is one of the best relaxants available Best-selling author David Michie takes a look at some of the psychological and physical benefits of meditation in these excerpts from his book, Hurry Up and Meditate.
The most obvious physical change that occurs when we bring body and mind together in meditation is that breathing naturally slows and, with it, the heartbeat. Blood pressure decreases and so too the metabolic rate. Muscular tension reduces significantly. In short, we One of my greatest challenges as a practicing Tibetan Buddhist of some thirty years has been to reconcile two worldviews—namely, those of Buddhism and Jung.
By some coincidence, I first encountered both of these at the same time, while at university. Finding that both approaches offered something very important in understanding my life, I have never felt the desire to abandon one for the sake of the Meditation The tenets of philosophical systems are to be practiced on the basis of a disciplined mental continuum; therefore, meditation is most important both in general and especially in the beginning.
Perhaps today as I explain this topic, we could engage in an experiment.
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Would you like to participate? First, look to your posture: arrange your legs in the most comfortable position; set the backbone as straight as an arrow. Place your hands in the position of meditative equipoise, four In this excerpt taken from the Introduction to The Treasury of Knowledge, Book Eight, Part Three: The Elements of Tantric Practice, the translator gives an interesting synopsis of aspects of practice that are covered in greater detail in the text.
Kongtrul discusses many details of the creation-phase practice, including suitable places, times and durations of practice, and the materials required for practice. There could be no better guide through potential pitfalls than Jeffrey Hopkins, perhaps the most widely respected American scholar of Tibetan Buddhism, ex-translator for the Dalai Lama, and author extraordinaire.
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This excerpt is adapted from Tantric Techniques. Tantric systems often treat as external forces what many other psychologies would consider internal; in In his Dzogchen teachings, Guru Padma sambhava urged his disciples to keep going beyond the boulders on the road of meditation. Whether the road is smooth or bumpy, it is good that you are moving along. When you begin practices, these obstacles will manifest.
At such times, Get out of the construction business!
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Better to simply relax, at ease and carefree, in total naturalness, and just go with the primordial flow, however it occurs and happens. And remember this: whether or not you go with the flow, it always goes with you. Yet it is not so easy—or so it seems. First we must recognize this profound view, innate Great These boundaries may Emptiness is perhaps the most important—yet difficult to define—topic in Buddhism.
Now, this may seem a little unusual for a meditation retreat.
He explains, however, that when you go to meditate, you normally take up something to meditate on, some thing. That thing, and therefore that meditation, is necessarily artificial.
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The practice of Mahamudra is not like that at all. It is not taking up a How do we deal with fear? The following excerpt is taken from the long-waited first book in English by the extraordinary master Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, one of the greatest teachers of our time.
It is by gradually developing bodhicitta and wisdom realizing emptiness—not by just becoming more The twelve-part process of dependent arising shows how actions underlain by ignorance propel us from one rebirth into another, keeping us trapped in suffering, and how through understanding reality correctly we can break this cycle.
The simplest method, explained by Lati Rinpoche, is to pacify any afflictive emotion that is Blaming our friends, enemies, circumstances, or even spirits for our troubles is not helpful, says HH the Dalai Lama in this excerpt from The Union of Bliss and Emptiness.
If one is not able to revolt against defilements and negative actions and overcome them, the most harmful factors, then one is not really a human being. If you have statues, you should not discriminate between them on the basis of their materials, and you must arrange them in a proper order. Even if a statue of a buddha is made of clay, it has to be placed on a high level; and even if your statues of dharmapalas such as Mahakala are made of copper or brass or even solid gold they should be placed below.
The proper order should be maintained. Especially, you should not Do not mistake this emptiness for a nihilistic nothingness.