Naropa: The View

The View, Concisely Put by Naropa

Sanskrit: Adhi Siddhi Sama Nama
Tibetan: lta ba mdor bsdus pa zhes bya ba (Tawa Dordupa)

Homage to the Vajra Dakini!

To the omniscient lord of refuge,
The protector of beings, I pay homage!

After pursuing statements and reasoning
I have condensed and established the true meaning.

All these apparent and existing phenomena
Are nowhere apart from mind, your own awarness.
Since it perceives and is cognizant,
It is like experience that is self-known.

If this mind was not like that
There would be no link and therefore no experience.
This is how I have established the relative:
“Understand that all phenomena are based on mind,” as it is said.

The very basis of phenomena, which is mind essence,
Can be analyzed, dissected with reasoning, and so forth,
But this naturally luminous mind
And the momentary defilement of thought, these two,
Whether they are one or different
Is a topic of extreme profundity.
Because of this depth, scholars analyze.
Though they explain, I shall not write about it here.

This mind that knows emptiness
Is itself the awakened mind, bodhichitta.
The buddha potential is just this.
The sugata essence is just this.

Because of tasting what is,
It is also the great bliss.
The understanding of Secret Mantra is just this.
Means and knowledge is just this.

The vast and profound is just this.
Samantabhadra with consort is just this.
This space and wisdom, perceiving while being empty,
Is what is called ‘knowing original enlightenment.’

This self-knowing, while one is still defiled,
Does not depend on other things,
So self-existing wakefulness is just this.

Being aware, it is cognizance.
A natural knowing that is free of thought.
This self-knowing cannot possibly form thoughts.

Without coneptualizing a ‘mind,’
Since it is not something to be conceived,
This original wakefulness, congnizant yet thought-free,
Is like the wisdom of the Tathagata.

Therefore, it is taught, “Realize that luminous mind
Is the mind of original wakefulness,
And don’t seek an enlightenment separate from that.”

Nevertheless, this mind does become disturbed
By the defilement of momentary thoughts.
Like water, like gold, like the sky,
It may be either pure or impure.

But the naturally luminous mind
Is free from even a hair-tip of concrete substance,
Like the analogy of a sky flower.

It does not exist as it seems to be,
Therefore, it cannot be established to be nonexistent.
As everything is mutually dependent,
When one side is invalid, the other side also does not exist.

Mind is neither existent nor nonexistent,
Since each of these [constructs] is negated.
It is also not both,
Since existing and not existing are a contradiction.
It is not a living being
Nor other than living beings.

Therefore, it is free from all constructs.
This is how I have established the ultimate:
“Mind is based on space,” as it is said.

Thus unconstructed self-knowing
Perceives while empty, and while empty it perceives.
Experience and emptiness are therefore indivisible,
Like the analogy of the moon in water.
This is how I have established nonduality:
“Space is not based on anything,” as it is said.

The unconstructed self-knowing
Is itself the very basis of samsara.
Nirvana as well is also just this.
The Great Middle Way is also just this.
That to be seen is also just this.
That to train in is also just this.
That to attain is also just this.
The valid truth is also just this.

The renowned threefold tantras
Of basic cause, method, and result,
And what is known as ground, path, and fruition,
Are just different situations of this.

The basic consciousness, the all-ground,
And all possible aggregates in samsara,
Are known as the ‘dependent,’ and so forth.

The creations of this mind essence, while one is still defiled,
The six classes of beings, and so forth,
Extending to the bounds of space,
Are the magical machinery of suffering, which surpasses the grasp of thought.

The unconstructed self-knowing itself
Which is free from the defilement of thought,
Is the nondwelling nirvana.

The Vajra Being is also just this.
The Sixth Buddha is also just this.
The six families are also just this.
Manjushri Kumara is just this.
Vairochana is just this.

Dharmakaya, the great bliss,
And the state of unity are also just this.
This itself is the fourth empowerment.
Innate joy is also just this.
Natural purity is also just this.

All these and other different indicators
Known from the sutras and tantras,
Are for the most part based on this;
Simply combined with this in whichever way is suitable.

The creations of this undefiled mind essence,
What comprises the kayas of form:
The buddhafields of utter purity,
The magically created mandalas, and so forth–
All these creations of great wonder–
Appear, extending to the bounds of space.

The non-Buddhist Tirthikas,
In the ignorance of mind itself,
Are submerged in an ocean of erroneous philosophy
Involving a self, supreme godhead, and the like.

The schools of Buddhism, such as the shravakas,
The pratyekabuddhas, and the followers of Mind Only,
Maintain the duality of perceiver and perceived,
And conceptualize nonduality as being the true.
Moreover, thery get caught in the web of concepts
Such as whether the perceived is real or false.

By not mistaking the view in this way,
You attain enlightenment through the meditation training and conduct,
That are in harmony with the real,
Just like a well-trained race horse.

Unless you are in harmony with the real view,
Your meditation training and conduct will be mistaken
And you will not attain fruition,
Like a blind man without a guide.

How can my conceptual mind, [limited in its perceptions] like a frog in a well,
Discover the profundity by stirring up
The ocean-like depth of true meaning!
May all learned masters forgive my errors!

Through whatever goodness there is from writing this
May the stain of delusion be fully cleared away
In fortunate and worthy beings,
And may the knowledge of realization grow forth!

The completes The View, Concisely Put by Naropa. In the presence of the pandita Jnana Siddhii, this was translated and corrected by lotsawa Marpa Chokyi Lodro. English translation by Erik Pema Kunsang. Published in Songs of Naropa: Commentaries on Songs of Realization, by Thrangu Rinpoche (Rangjung Yeshe Publications, 1997).