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Moreover, this mind-state is pre-installed in every cranium and, as such, is the “base,” the background of all mind-gestalts and mind-forms that pass through it like reflections across the surface of the mirror. So, that’s the good news: your nirvana is built-in, and there is nowhere to go, so, you can stay exactly where you are and still “get there” if you so choose.
Here’s the bad news, though: intellectual “knowledge of this nondual state” and “direct experiential knowledge” of this nondual state are “two very different things” because “even if we think we have grasped the meaning of the word ‘nondual,’ we are really just fooling ourselves” (C.
So, here you are, sitting on a trillion mind-bucks.  Goody!  Start digging in your skull-pocket.
Dzogchen, an ancient teaching about the nature of mind, “should not be classified as a religious or philosophical tradition.  Rather it is a complete way of knowledge of the individual’s state of being, beyond the limits of either religious belief or culture.
Last updated: 9 Jul 2011Views expressed are those solely of the writer and have not been reviewed. 49 Phrases to Calm an Anxious Child 10 Telling Signs You're an Emotionally Intelligent Person Why Are There So Many Narcissists? Dzogchen is both the final and ultimate teaching, and the heart of the teachings of all the Buddhas. The second term is Atiyoga, which means ‘primordial yoga’; Ati indicates the topmost, summit or zenith. Dzogchen lineage masters, from a Longchen Nyingtik thangkaThe lineage of Dzogchen is traced from the Dharmakaya Samantabhadra to the Sambhogakaya—the five buddha families and Vajrasattva, who are Samantabhadra’s own self-reflection.
The ultimate source of the teachings of Atiyoga or Dzogchen is the Primordial Buddha Samantabhadra. Shri Singha further divided the Mengakde into four cycles: outer, inner, secret and innermost, unexcelled. The teachings which place more emphasis on the natural condition of the mind (sem kyi ne luk), were classed by Manjushrimitra as Semde, the category of mind.
At the present moment our awareness is entangled within our mind, completely enveloped and obscured by mental activity.
To accomplish this it is necessary to do the practice of ‘the four ways of leaving things in their natural simplicity’ (Tib. These experiences are not linked with consciousness or intellect as the former experiences were; they are a true manifestation or radiance of awareness. This is the path intended for people of superior faculties who can achieve enlightenment in this very lifetime. But if one cannot achieve such ultimate attainment within a lifetime, then there is still the possibility of achieving enlightenment at the time of death. If one is not liberated at this time, then countless manifestations will appear: sounds, lights and rays. In essence, the primordial nature of the Buddha Samantabhadra is like the ground or mother-nature of realization. For ordinary beings unable to achieve liberation either in this life or in the intermediate state, liberation can be attained in the nirmanakaya buddha fields. In brief, through the practice of the path of Trekcho and Togal, one will reach the ultimate realization of the Dharmakaya, the enlightened state of the Primordial Buddha Samantabhadra, within this very lifetime. Sogyal Rinpoche, The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying, HarperSanFrancisco, Revised and Updated, 2002, pages 155-56.
Dzogchen, or Dzogpa Chenpo, is the Tibetan name for a set of teachings known in English as the Great Perfection. For a detailed explanation of the Dzogchen tradition read Words of My Perfect Teacher by Patrul Rinpoche.
High Peaks Pure Earth has translated a blogpost by Woeser written on September 4, 2011 for the Tibetan service of Radio Free Asia and posted on her blog on September 11, 2011. Ten years ago, on my way to Pelpung Monastery, I encountered migrant workers who were excessively cutting down trees. There is no need to, like a tourist, talk about the experiences of visiting Dzogchen Monastery several times, but what I do need to say is that my first visit was most beautiful one.
An outstanding Tibetan Rinpoche said to me that today, in the same way as people like to use popular building materials to decorate their houses, temples, scripture and Buddhist halls are also being refurbished with reinforced concrete, ceramics, aluminium etc.
I still remember the summer of 2004 when a Han Chinese friend of mine, a lay Buddhist, followed an influential Han Chinese Buddhist lama to Dzogchen Monastery to join the great opening ceremony of the Scripture Hall but my friend was rather disappointed. About usHigh Peaks Pure Earth provides insightful commentary on Tibet related news and issues and provides translations from writings in Tibetan and Chinese posted on blogs from Tibet and the People's Republic of China.
IMPORTANT NOTICEThe translations by High Peaks Pure Earth - including text, photos and videos - are copyrighted. When re-posting our work on your website or blog, please always credit to High Peaks Pure Earth and complete the attribution by posting a link to the original.

High Peaks Pure Earth does not assume responsibility for opinions expressed in the comments sections.
Without ever having become a sect in itself, Dzogchen has remained a direct teaching” (Adriano Clemente).
Though generally associated with the Nyingma or Ancient School of Tibetan Buddhism founded by Padmasambhava, Dzogchen has been practised throughout the centuries by masters of all the different schools as their innermost practice. The first is Mahasandhi, which means the gathering of all or the quintessence, signifying that Dzogchen is the very essence, the cream and the heart juice of all teachings. It has the sense of scaling a mountain, reaching the peak and having a view over everything. Whilst the root of Dzogchen is the 6,400,000 verses or shlokas, the actual tantras are said to number 22,000. Trekcho is translated as ‘thoroughly cutting through’ (resistance, stubbornness, toughness and closedness), or ‘breakthrough’. Here it is not sufficient to concentrate on contrived practices that involve intellectual efforts and concepts; to recognise this Nature, the practice should be utterly beyond fabrication.
Through the practice of Trekcho, or ‘cutting through all attachment’, and the ‘direct realization’ of Togal, one can unmask this awareness and let its radiance arise. After this, in the same way that the moon decreases and disappears from the fifteenth to the thirtieth of the month, all of these experiences and visions, all phenomena, will gradually come to exhaustion and reabsorb themselves in the Absolute.
For those of medium faculties, there is instruction on how to achieve liberation within the 'Bardo' or ‘intermediate state’. In order to destroy all deluded perceptions or deluded thoughts in this Bardo, the ultimate practice is Dzogchen Atiyoga.
If our teacher or a close Dharma brother is near to us at the very moment of our death, he will remind us of the instructions—the introduction to the nature of mind.
Great fear will arise because of these emanations and visions, but if one is a good practitioner one will realize that there is no point in being afraid. Within the Tibetan Buddhist tradition these ancient and secret teachings are the most exalted and profound of all the secret tantras. Since then, the teachings have been passed down secretly by masters to a few select students.
This book was written in Dzogchen Monastery and explains clearly how to practise Tibetan Buddhism in the Dzogchen tradition. The next post in this series will describe Woeser’s impressions on arriving in Lhasa. The place we stayed at belongs to Derge County, which is also my late Father’s hometown, so I felt a sense of benignity mixed with some sadness. There were several hundreds of timber logs scattered across the hillside, piling up at the bottom of the ravine, the mountains and fields echoed the sounds of axes and hatchets cutting down trees, mixed with the roaring of the workers. Then we set out to drive towards the renowned great Nyingma Monastery – Dzogchen Monastery. When I saw it once more with my own eyes, the Great Scripture Hall and other Buddhist halls had been excessively decorated and the building materials used for this were totally different from traditional temple materials.
It is said that the ceremony resembled that of a government held event, including the cutting of a ribbon and the burning of fireworks and the Rinpoches, in the same way as big leaders, took turns to go on stage and deliver speeches; it seemed that the workings of officialdom had infected them too. Its origins reach back to before human history, and neither is it limited to Buddhism, nor to Tibet, nor indeed even to this world of ours, as it is recorded that it has existed in thirteen different world systems.
It is widely translated as “Great Perfection”, but this may imply a perfection that we strive to attain, a journey towards a goal of Great Perfection, and this is not the meaning of Dzogchen. Hence many of the teachings are known as ‘Nyingtik’ or ‘Heart Essence’, for example the Longchen Nyingtik. For Atiyoga or Dzogchen stands at the apex of the characteristic Nyingmapa presentation of the Buddhist path as Nine Yanas or vehicles, with the three Inner Tantras special to the Nyingma tradition: Mahayoga, Anuyoga and Atiyoga. The practice is simply to realise the radiance, the natural expression of wisdom, which is beyond all intellectual concepts.
Then will come the ‘four visions of togal’ which are the natural arising of visions of discs and rays of light, deities and buddha fields. At this time the deluded mind which conceives subject and object will disappear, and the primal wisdom, which is beyond intellect, will gradually expand. If we can recall our experience of practice and remain in this nature, then we achieve realization. One will know that whatever deities appear, wrathful or peaceful, they are one’s own projections. When these two meet, one will attain full realization and seize the fortress of Enlightenment.

If not, then one can be freed in the other three Bardos: the Bardos of the moment of death, Dharmata and Becoming. The supreme goal of practice is enlightenment or Buddhahood, which can be attained in a single lifetime. As someone who has travelled to many places in Tibet, when I sit on the grass, listening to the low murmuring of the river water flowing past, looking at the clouds reddening and darkening, I always think that Tibet is the most magnificent place; but the empty batches on the green mountains clearly serve as a testimony of the destruction of forest resources. I followed the noise up the hill and took some photos and was almost overwhelmed by a timber log that one of the tree fellers had deliberately pushed down. For example, they used ceramics for the flooring and aluminium-alloyed windows, western-style wall lamps, Chinese-style door locks, marble-sculptured railings, and the vertical banners hanging from the walls resembled Chinese-style rhyming couplets; on both sides were written Buddhist words in Chinese and Tibetan writing. The two Han Chinese Buddhists left hurriedly and only after visiting the Serthar Larung Gar Buddhist Institute they thought their trip had actually been worthwhile. The practice of Dzogchen is the most ancient and direct stream of wisdom within the Buddhist tradition of Tibet.
Dzogchen is explained as Ground, Path and Fruition, and from the point of view of the Ground of Dzogpachenpo, it is the already self-perfected state of our primordial nature, which needs no ‘perfecting’, for it has always been perfect from the very beginning, just like the sky.
The zenith of all yanas, Atiyoga represents the culmination of an individual’s spiritual evolution, the point where all spiritual disciplines and paths have been traversed. Vajrasattva appeared to the first human master Garab Dorje, who was born in Oddiyana, empowered him, and instructed him to write down the Dzogchen Tantras.
The Semde and Longde were transmitted in Tibet mainly by Vairochana and Vimalamitra, and the Mengakde by Vimalamitra and Padmasambhava. These visions are naturally ready to arise from within the central channel that joins the heart to the eyes. Eventually one will attain the perfect enlightenment of the Primordial Buddha, Samantabhadra, endowed with the six extraordinary features. As the ultimate fruition of this practice, the ordinary body made of gross aggregates will dissolve into the ‘Rainbow Body of Great Transference’ or ‘Vajra-body’, or dissolve without leaving any remnants. Even if this does not happen, one can still be relieved of suffering and be liberated by the virtues or blessings of the Dzogchen teachings.
Through concentrated practice many extraordinary qualities can be achieved, including unobstructed clairvoyance and the ability to sustain oneself without need for food or shelter.
At the time, I also heard a reporter from Xinhua saying that since the trees in Drango County of Kardze Prefecture had already nearly been exhausted and the mountains were completely bare, the only option was to directly dissolve the local forest industry. As for the multi-layered golden summit and each of its golden banners and dragon-headed upturned eaves, no matter whether they were made from gold or copper, one could see from far away that they had been luxuriously polished.
Sogyal Rinpoche describes it as "the heart-essence of all spiritual paths and the summit of an individual’s spiritual evolution"[1]. The term ‘Maha Ati’ has also been used for Dzogchen in recent times by masters like Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche. The transmission then passed to Manjushrimitra, Shri Singha and Jnanasutra through the Sign Transmission of the Vidyadharas (Tib. The three categories are taught to suit the capacities or disposition (kham) of individual students. If this is not accomplished, then the Bardo of the Absolute Nature, or Dharmata, will arise. Someone who masters these teachings will have control over their life span and when they do pass away their physical elements will be liberated into the rainbow body. As a way in which to realize the innermost nature of mind—that which we really are—Dzogchen is the clearest, most effective, and most relevant to the modern world.
For example, for someone who is more intellectually inclined or analytical, there is the teaching of Semde, and for a person who is drawn more to nature and inclined towards simplicity, there is Longde. In the same way that the waxing moon will increase from the first to the fifteenth of the month, these visions will gradually increase—from the simple perception of dots of light to the full array of the vast expanse of the sambhogakaya buddha fields.
If one practises in the right way at this time one can be liberated into a nirmanakaya buddha field. It was dedication to the practice of the Great Perfection which led to both the monastery and the entire district becoming known as Dzogchen.
If one can unite the Ground Luminosity (Mother Luminosity) with the Luminosity which one has recognized whilst practising during one’s lifetime (Child Luminosity), then one will be liberated into the Dharmakaya.

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