A. Berzin: The Dormant Clear Light

The Dormant Clear Light Mind during Periods of Grosser Consciousness

Alexander Berzin, November 2013. Based on explanations by Samdhong Rinpoche.

The subtlest mind (sems shin-tu phra-mo), known as the clear-light mind (‘od-gsal), has uninterrupted continuity, with no beginning and no end, even when enlightened. Before enlightenment, it is manifest (mngon-‘gyur-ba) automatically for a tiny moment at death. Continue reading »

The Yoga of the Triple Purification of the Glorious Chakrasamvara

The Yoga of the Triple Purification of the Glorious Chakrasamvara
(dPal ‘khor-lo sdom-pa’i dag-pa gsum-gyi rnal-‘byor) translated by Alexander Berzin, April 1975, revised May 2009, based on explanations by Geshe Ngawang Dhargyey and on a discourse by Tsenzhab Serkong Rinpoche on The Generation Stage of the Mahasiddha Luipa Tradition of Chakrasamvara: Personal Instructions of Manjushri (Grub-chen Lu-i pa’i lugs-kyi dpal ‘khor-lo sdom pa’i bskyed-rim he-ru-ka’i zhal-lung) by Akhuchin Sherab-gyatso (A-khu-chin Shes-rab rgya-mtsho), printed with permission from Study Buddhism, a project of Berzin Archives e.V. https://studybuddhism.com/. This practice is restricted to only those with the appropriate tantric empowerment. You must have received a Heruka Chakrasambhava initiation in order to perform this practice. Continue reading »

Geshe Yeshe Tobden: Divinity yoga

Ven Ghesce Yesce Tobten and Ven. Ghesce Ciampa Gyatzo

Ven Ghesce Yesce Tobten and Ven. Ghesce Ciampa Gyatzo

The Teachings of Ven.Geshe YesheTobden during a seminar in Turin, November 1-3, 1985. by Mariangiola Fracasso


Ven. Geshe Yeshe Tobden.

We will talk about the practice of Dharma. If we analyze the reality of our condition, we see that we want happiness and of course we do not want misery and suffering. We can have the happiness that comes from material things, but the eternal happiness can not be obtained through them.
You can say the same thing about suffering and misery: we can partially get rid of them through material objects, but not completely. Continue reading »

H.H. Sakya Trizin: Tantra

Buddhist Tantra: Some Introductory Remarks

His Holiness Sakya Trizin

There is a common misconception among many non-Buddhists (and even among certain Buddhists) that the Tantras are late and corrupt additions to the Buddha’s Teachings. This is false. The Tantras are genuine teachings of the Lord Buddha, and they occupy a paramount position within the overall framework of Buddhist doctrine.

Some of the misconceptions about the Tantras stem from their esoteric nature. Since the time of the Buddha the Tantras were always taught secretly and selectively. For their correct understanding they have always required the oral instructions of a qualified master; without such explanations they can easily be misunderstood in wrong and harmful ways. In order to uphold this tradition I am prevented from discussing most aspects of Tantra here. But it is perhaps permissible here to say a few general things about Buddhist Tantra and about how it is related to other systems of Buddhist and non-Buddhist thought and practice. I shall base myself on the teachings of our tradition such as the Rgyud sde spyi’i rnam gzhag (“General System of the Tantras”) of Lobpon Sonam Tsemo. Continue reading »

Bodhichitta and the Two Truths in Anuttarayoga Tantra

Bodhichitta and the Two Truths in Anuttarayoga Tantra

by Dr. Alexander Berzin
Conventional and Deepest Bodhichittas

Conventional bodhichitta (kun-rdzob byang-sems, relative bodhichitta) focuses on the superficial truth (kun-rdzob bden-pa, conventional truth, relative truth) of enlightenment, such as its qualities of omniscience. Deepest bodhichitta (don-dam byang-sems, ultimate bodhichitta) focuses on its deepest truth (don-dam bden-pa, ultimate truth), namely its voidness (stong-nyid, emptiness).

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Jamyang Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö: The Bright Lamp of the Heart Essence

Jamyang Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö: The Bright Lamp of the Heart Essence: A Guru Yoga


Namo Gurave!

རང་རིག་བླ་མར་ཕྱག་འཚལ་ནས།།རྡོ་རྗེའི་ཡེ་ཤེས་འབེབས་པའི་ཐབས། །བྱིན་རླབས་བླ་མའི་རྣལ་འབྱོར་ནི། །མདོར་བསྡུས་ཉུང་གསལ་སྙིང་པོར་སྤེལ།།

I pay homage to the guru, my own rigpa awareness! I shall now set out this method for invoking indestructible wisdom, the practice of uniting with the blessings of the lama, clearly and in its essence. Continue reading »

16 Drops of Kadam

16 Drops of Kadam Initiation

At the conclusion of the 2015 Jangchup Lamrim Teachings, His Holiness the Dalai Lama kindly bestowed the Sixteen Drops of Kadam Initiation. Materials related to this initiation can be found below.

Introductory Information

The following excerpt is from the Introduction to The Book of Kadam: The Core Texts, translated by Geshe Thubten Jinpa, which contains more information on the 16 Drops of Kadam Initiation. The Book of Kadam is available from Wisdom Publications https://www.wisdompubs.org/book/book-kadam/introduction Continue reading »

Tsenzhab Serkong Rinpoche: Extra-bodily States in Buddhism

Tsenzhab Serkong Rinpoche: With proper guidance, a good motivation, and intense meditation practice, such states may be harnessed to expand one’s potentials for helping others and oneself to the benefit of all.

Tsenzhab Serkong Rinpoche: Extra-bodily States in Buddhism

The Buddhist literature and oral tradition record many instances of consciousness traveling with a subtle form outside the rough body.

Such phenomena have also been noted in the West and often labeled as “astral body travel.” Although it is difficult to correlate experiences and identify individual cases from one culture to another within the classification scheme of that other culture, nevertheless it may be useful to outline some varieties of this phenomenon as found in the Buddhist traditions of Indian and Tibet.

Illusory Body

Through intensive, deep meditation practice, it is possible to achieve an illusory body (sgyu-lus) (See:What is Meditation?). This is the result of extremely advanced complete stage (rdzogs-rim, completion stage) practice in the highest class of tantra, anuttarayoga. It is with this body that one gains the nonconceptual realization of voidness with a clear light subtlest mind. In this form, it is possible to travel extensively outside the limitations of one’s physical body, working for the benefit of others.

In order to attain an illusory body, it is necessary to have achieved beforehand renunciation of suffering, a bodhichitta aim to achieve Buddhahood in order to be able to help all others achieve the same, and a correct conceptual understanding of voidness. In addition, one must have attained single-pointed absorbed concentration (ting-nge-‘dzin, Skt. samadhi), received the proper tantric empowerments from a fully qualified tantric master, kept all the vows purely, and attained proficiency in the generation stage (bskyed-rim) and the initial complete stage practices of anuttarayoga tantra.

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