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Mahamudra in Theravada? - Dhamma Wheel

Mahamudra in Theravada?

A forum for beginners and members of other Buddhist traditions to ask questions about Theravāda (The Way of the Elders). Responses require moderator approval before they are visible.
ashtanga
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Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby ashtanga » Wed Nov 18, 2009 6:31 pm

...is there a similarity between Mahamudra and contemplation of Mind in Theravada?

Thanks!

Tony...

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jcsuperstar
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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby jcsuperstar » Wed Nov 18, 2009 7:03 pm

explain mahamudra in detail and we'll let you know, but probably
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat

ashtanga
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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby ashtanga » Thu Nov 19, 2009 11:33 am

Hi,

Mahamudra meditation practice works to directly reveal emptiness to one's own direct experience in one's own mind. This is achieved by meditating directly on one's own mind. This is known as "taking the path of direct valid cognition"—it emphasizes directly experiencing the phenomena of one's own mind and experiencing emptiness. This is done by actually seeking the minds, colour, shape, location, size...etc. This of course leave no option but to realise the Empty nature of the mind.

Regards,

Tony...

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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby Sanghamitta » Thu Nov 19, 2009 11:41 am

The OP asks if there is a parallel to this in the Theravada .

Until someone more qualified comes forward witha reply, I would say that on the surface there appears to be no obvious parallel in the Theravada. I wonder if Mahamudra takes its impetus from Yogacara teachings ? If so this appears to be problematic in terms of the Theravada. I would be happy to stand corrected however.
Last edited by Sanghamitta on Thu Nov 19, 2009 11:59 am, edited 1 time in total.
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

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tiltbillings
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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Nov 19, 2009 11:54 am


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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby Sanghamitta » Thu Nov 19, 2009 11:59 am

Can you add a little Tiltbillings ?
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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby Cittasanto » Thu Nov 19, 2009 12:16 pm

there are several hundred books on Vipassana and several interperetation on how it is done, theravada has 2 different satipatthana suttas and other satipatthana texts which are aspects of these two, buddhism as a whole has 6 different verions all with similarities but differing content to an extent, each have body feeling, mind & dhamma sections.


He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.

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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby Sanghamitta » Thu Nov 19, 2009 12:27 pm

The parallel between Mahamudra and Vipassana is not immediately clear to me.
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

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jcsuperstar
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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby jcsuperstar » Thu Nov 19, 2009 2:16 pm

one would take mind as an object of mindfulness. thus one would realize its true nature
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat

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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby Sanghamitta » Thu Nov 19, 2009 2:20 pm

What in terms of the Theravada is " mind" apart from the functions of the skandhas ? And how could its true nature be other than anicca and anatta ?
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby Cittasanto » Thu Nov 19, 2009 2:40 pm



He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.

Sanghamitta
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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby Sanghamitta » Thu Nov 19, 2009 2:48 pm

So, that is the nature of contemplation of the mind in the Theravada. Is there not some implication within the Vajrayana that this can be achieved by the receiving of an initiation of some kind from a guru ? My understanding was that this was the modus operandi of Mahamudra. If so, how does this have a parallel with the Theravada ? I am struggling with this a bit.
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

Bhikku Bodhi.

ashtanga
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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby ashtanga » Thu Nov 19, 2009 3:44 pm


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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby Sanghamitta » Thu Nov 19, 2009 4:13 pm

Ok...I am not being awkward here I am trying to understand..how does that relate to the OP " Mahamudra In Theravada " ?
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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby IanAnd » Thu Nov 19, 2009 4:41 pm

"The gift of truth exceeds all other gifts" — Dhammapada, v. 354 Craving XXIV

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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby Sanghamitta » Thu Nov 19, 2009 5:04 pm

That raises two points for me, the first is that as I understand it the difference is that that direct perception of mind in the vajrayana is said to happen after or as a result of initiatory processes by a guru. So the end result may be the same, but the proposed methodology is very different from the Theravada. Secondly there is an assumption made here that the philosophy of Nagarjuna is derived from the Pali Canon...what is the evidence for this view ? I do not know where the Tibetans derived their view of this practice, I do know that there are Theravadin teachers who point to the Vedas as the actual source of Vajrayana philosophy. After all if we really believe that there is a "shortened path" whats keeping us here ? I ask this in all sincerity and metta.
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

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LauraJ
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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby LauraJ » Thu Nov 19, 2009 6:06 pm

Mahamudra

Mahamudra meditation practice works to directly reveal emptiness to one's own direct experience in one's own mind. This is achieved by meditating directly on one's own mind. This is known as "taking the path of direct valid cognition"—it emphasizes directly experiencing the phenomena of one's own mind and experiencing emptiness.

As in all Buddhist schools of meditation, the basic meditative practice of Mahamudra is divided into two approaches: śamatha ("tranquility") and vipaśyanā ("insight").

The meditation manuals (in particular those of The 9th Karmapa) are among the most detailed and precise in the Buddhist literature. For tranquility practice they enumerate the stages of settling the mind and specify many common problems (eg. excitement, torpor, doubt, apathy) and practices to remedy these problems. The objects of meditation are simple objects, statues of the Buddha, the breath, mantras, complex visualizations and deities and Yidams. These objects of meditation are common throughout Tibetan Vajrayana practice.

The detailed instructions for the Insight practices are what make Mahamudra (and Dzogchen) unique.

The meditator is instructed to observe the mind at rest and then during the occurrence of thought. In some practices disturbing emotions are deliberately invoked and the meditator is directed to experience their "empty" nature. The meditator is further instructed to observe that which is looking for the nature of the mind: to observe the observer.

Lineages


Mahamudra is most well-known as a teaching within the Kagyu lineages of Tibetan Buddhism. However the Tibetan Buddhist Gelug and Sakya schools also practice Mahamudra, as does Shingon Buddhism, the other major sub-school of the Vajrayana. The Nyingma and Bön traditions practise Dzogchen, a cognate but distinct method of direct introduction to the empty nature of mind. Nyingma students may also receive supplemental training in Mahamudra, and the Palyul Nyingma lineage preserves a lineage of the "Union of Mahamudra and Ati Yoga" originated by Karma Chagme.




Conquer the angry man by love. Conquer the ill-natured man by goodness. Conquer the miser with generosity. Conquer the liar with truth. -The Dhammapada

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LauraJ
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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby LauraJ » Thu Nov 19, 2009 6:10 pm




Conquer the angry man by love. Conquer the ill-natured man by goodness. Conquer the miser with generosity. Conquer the liar with truth. -The Dhammapada

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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby Sanghamitta » Thu Nov 19, 2009 6:37 pm

In all honesty Laura taking the results as the path neither makes sense ( to me ) nor does it answer my question, but I am sure we can maintain a friendly difference of view.
:smile:
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

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LauraJ
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Re: Mahamudra in Theravada?

Postby LauraJ » Thu Nov 19, 2009 7:01 pm




Conquer the angry man by love. Conquer the ill-natured man by goodness. Conquer the miser with generosity. Conquer the liar with truth. -The Dhammapada


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