B. Alan Wallace, 22 Sep 2015
The meditation is a combination of earth, wind and space. Meditation starts straight away.
After the meditation, Alan explains that when we see this chapter is called Mahamudra, we may think there will be something very special, but the author goes back to the preliminaries and spends most of the rest of the chapter reviewing Shamatha. His strong sense is that this is to prevent the practitioner from grasping onto non- meditation. This is a wake up call and that’s why he’s going back.
He returns to p. 161 to highlight the experiential comments in the two texts that are quoted, pointing out that there is nothing more definitive or authoritative. Then he talks about what it’s like to achieve Shamatha and the radical changes that happen to the physiology and the mind.
Returning to p. 165, Alan comments on the four contemplations or four yogas, and talks about Lama Tsong Karpa’s view that a gifted practitioner may go into vipashyana without much Shamata, gain some realisation of emptiness and that can be the object of shamatha, so the method itself is the union of shamatha and vipashyana. Or Shamatha can be achieved by way of generation stage practice. There are also the methods discussed in the Vajra Essence.
The transmission from the text continues until the end of the chapter, and Alan ends with a very clear explanation of the meaning of rang jung /self-emergence of primordial consciousness in this context.
Meditation starts at 0:01
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