03 May 2016
Alan begins by talking about the fact that he would love to see a revitalization of contemplative inquiry, and he reiterates the idea emphasized by His Holiness the Dalai Lama that in Buddhism there is a science of the mind, not just a philosophical or religious tradition. Not everyone who reads science wants to become a scientist, and likewise, this retreat is not for everyone. It is intended for those seeking the path. For the scientific assertions within Buddhism and other traditions to be tested and intersubjectively validated to add to the pool of consensual knowledge about the mind, one needs a reliable tool for observation - a telescope for the mind, shamatha. Alan also reminds us that we don’t want to be introduced to Rigpa too soon. As with Madhyamaka, you don’t want it to go to your head; you want it to go to your heart.
The meditation is Padmasambhava’s placement exam on merging the mind with space.
After the meditation Alan tells us that we will be returning to Panchen Rinpoche’s text this afternoon and not to be overwhelmed, saying that outside of the teaching sessions we should focus on the practices that we find most helpful for the remainder of the retreat. And, if your mind is beating you up, release it. Then he tells us what Padmasambhava says we should do if we are of medium or dull faculties.
The meditation starts at 19:49
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