Monday, October 3, 2016

Fire on the Mountain: Chogyal Namkhai Norbu on Respect and Diminishing our Ego

Recently on the Tsegyalgar East Facebook Page, Fred Klarer has been posting passages from Chogyal Namkhai Norbu's teachings. You can join this closed Facebook Group called Tsegyalgar East at the following link:

 Here is one such  marvelous passage reprinted from the publication, The Yoga of Prana for Clarity and Emptiness, 

An Early photo of CHNNR teaching in the Group House on Parsons Road, Conway MA, 
left to right Michael Katz, Christiana de Falco, Rochelle Hood, 
Paolo Simonato, Kathy Smith, and Gennaro Palladino. Photo Courtesy of Chritiana de Falco

“I think one of the most important things for all practitioners, new and old, is that we discover our ego through practice. The principle is not that we only talk about contemplation. Instead, sometimes we talk too much about contemplation and we really live in a kind of fantasy. . . . In the real sense, what we apply and how we are is full of ego. . . . Of course, if we are really in the knowledge of contemplation, when we are integrated our ego disappears. But many times it seems that the ego of the practitioners is becoming stronger and stronger. This means that the practice is somehow not working and is not becoming real. For example, in general we need to say, “Please respect each other, or respect other people!” If we are really practitioners, having knowledge and understanding of Dzogchen, it is not necessary to continuously repeat this like a prayer. In general, a good practitioner automatically manifests this quality. However, some practitioners have not yet realized this condition in a concrete way. I’m not criticizing, but it depends on you. You observe yourself and then you may discover. I‘m not saying everybody, but in general many people are manifesting that kind of attitude. If someone says, “Oh, you have a very strong ego, etc.,” then you immediately feel criticized. That is not a good solution. Even if your teacher tells you these things, you must discover it by yourself. Otherwise you always remain the same.

The best solution is that we remember the function of the mirror. If we look in a mirror, we can see how our face looks. If we have some defects on our face, we can discover them by looking in the mirror. If someone says, “Oh, you have a defect on your face,” you are not happy and you experience it as a kind of criticism. Looking into the mirror is useful; so we must observe ourselves very often and we really need to work in this way. It is very important that we try to be in our knowledge and understanding in a concrete way. Then there is at least something to integrate in our existence. . . . Of course, it is important and useful that we learn different kinds of techniques and methods. If we use and learn them for training in a concrete way we can also have different kinds of experiences. These experience help very much for progressing in our capacity of knowledge, understanding and also for having realization. But the main point is that we follow the path in a correct way.

Some people have said to me . . . “Your students are not very humble, they are arrogant.” . . . I do hope it is not true. . . . If we have this kind of attitude and you manifest in this way, it means that you are not really integrated with the teachings. Therefore it is very important that we try to do something more concretely instead of living in a fantasy. Sometimes people follow the teachings for two or three years and instead of developing clarity and making real progress in their knowledge, they progress to establish a kind of ego by developing all kinds of fantasies. I think this is really not so very useful. Since the beginning I have continuously tried to communicate how we have to follow the teachings by observing ourselves and by really integrating this knowledge in our existence. Sometimes people find it difficult when I’m teaching in that way, because when I teach something . . . Explaining that you chant something and after this you should do this or that, it somehow seems to be easier. However, that is not really Dzogchen teaching.

The teaching of the Dzogchen principle is that you discover your real nature. Then, relatively speaking, with your potentiality you become responsible for yourself. If I tell you to do this or not to do that and you follow in that way, then you become totally dependent on me or my teaching or a particular method. . . . You have to have the feeling of total freedom. That means also to be free from me, from my teachings and transmissions. However, . . . you should also know why you are following my teachings and how to follow my transmission. The reason for this is that in order to discover and get into your real nature, you have to be free. For that purpose I transmit many methods of how to have different kinds of experiences. Thus it is very important that you clearly distinguish the real teaching, what you need and how to apply it. . . . Our commitment since the beginning is that there is a relationship between teacher and student, students and students, and a connection for collaboration with each other until the total realization.

Therefore until we have achieved total realization, we need to collaborate with each other. Of course, if somethings does not correspond with the real condition of the teachings and its knowledge, then we must not repeat it. -- Chogyal Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche,  [The Yoga of Prana for Clarity and Emptiness,
pp. 26 - 29]

No comments: