Tuesday, November 3, 2020

The true nature of Reality - Trikaya - 016


The true nature of Reality - Trikaya

(i.e. Logic: This résumé of all Madhyamaka reasonings will be useful to analyse this text:
Union of the Two Truths about any & all dharmas [U2T]:
{All dharmas are not really different / separate / multiple / dual / in opposition or relation, but are more like an inconceivable Union of being empty of inherent existence (2nd truth - not real existence) <==> because of being inseparable (one cannot exists without the other), interdependent (one implies the other), co-defined (the definition of one defines the other), co-relative, co-dependent, co-emergent (they arise together), co-evolving, co-ceasing / co-transcended (they cease together), in harmony (not in real opposition), equal / non-dual / one (1st truth - not complete non-existence);
they are like illusions / dreams / reflections / rainbows / like the displays of a magical show or cosmic dance of luminosity; in other words, they are appearing but still empty, empty but still appearing; one aspect / truth implies the other (<==>), one aspect / truth proves the other (<==>). This is the King of reasoning; the Union of the Two Truths. [U2T]}
<==> {because of that then they have no real three stages of existence: i. origination / beginning / birth / before / past, ii. duration / middle / life / change / during / present, iii. cessation / ending / death / after / future; they have no real parts, or defining characteristics, or three marks, or functional properties, or qualities;
and so they have no permanence / continuity / eternity, no impermanence / discontinuity / annihilation, or any combination of the two, or neither, between one infinitesimal moment and the next one (valid for any thing, any being, any relation / action), or between two consecutive rebirths for beings, or between samsara and nirvana}
<==> {because of these then they are merely labelled / imputed / conceptualised / categorised / classified by the mind / subject (after the fact) in co-dependence with its conditioning / karma (physical, conceptual, mental; individual, collective, cosmic); in other words, as objects they are inseparable, interdependent, co-dependent, co-emergent, co-evolving, co-ceasing, non-dual with the subject / mind -- in the non-dual sense of those terms; ex. subject & object are not different / separate / two / dual / independent, not identical / united / one / non-dual / dependent, not both together, not neither [U3S]}
<==> {because of these then there is no real difference, separation, opposition, relation, dependence, duality between them…, and no real identity / sameness, unity, equality, non-duality, oneness, independence either; there is no inherent / universal / absolute basis for any discrimination between them (acceptation or rejection) or non-discrimination, action or non-action; ex. it is not about accepting one or few opposite(s) while rejecting the other(s), not about accepting all opposites, not about rejecting all opposites [Uopp]}
<==> {because of these then they are not 'this', not 'non-this', not both together, not neither (tetralemma) -- and there is no other possibility -- for whatever dualistic concept ‘this’ is --; meaning their true nature is indescribable, inconceivable, beyond all conceptual proliferations, beyond all extremes & middle; examples, they are
- not different / separate / multiple / dual, not identical / united / one / non-dual, not both together, not neither;
- not inherently existent, not completely non-existent, not both together, not neither;
- not permanent / continuous / eternal, not impermanent / discontinuous / annihilated, not both together, not neither;
- not purely objective / physical / body, not purely subjective / mental / mind, not purely relational / process / conceptual / speech, not two or three of them together, not none of them;
- not dependent / caused / produced / functional, not independent / uncaused/spontaneous / unproduced / non-functional, not both together, not neither;
- not other-caused / other-arisen, not self-caused / self-arisen / spontaneous, not both together, not neither;
- not empty, not non-empty, not both together, not neither;
- not dependently co-arisen / interdependent (1st truth), not empty of inherent existence (2nd truth), not both truths together, not neither truth;
- not good / pure / perfect / equal / divine, not bad / impure / imperfect / unequal / ordinary, not both together, not neither;
- not conventional / relative / false, not absolute / universal / true, not both together, not neither;
- not this/that, not non-this/non-that, not both together, not neither.}
<==> {because of these then we say that they are like transparent, uncompounded, self-arisen, unborn, uncreated, unfabricated, unchanging, unceasing, spontaneous displays of the Ground, unobstructed, infinite, timeless, one in naturelessness, primordially equal, pure, perfect, divine, Buddha-nature, Buddhaverse, Dharmata, Suchness, Trikaya … That is the inconceivable indivisible self-arisen Ground / Dharmata. With direct wisdom, everything is transcended / purified / self-liberated into this self-arisen timeless equal pure perfect Ground / the inconceivable true nature of Reality as it is in the three times.}
<==> {because of these then the best attitude toward them is the Middle Way free from all extremes & middle;
Extremes like: i) existence / realism, ii) non-existence / nihilism, iii) both together / dualism, iv) neither / monism; or extremes like v) subject-only / mind-only / idealism / subjectivism, vi) object-only / naïve realism / objectivism, vii) relation-only / process-only / action-only / relationism / processism, viii) two or three of them together / pluralism, ix) none to them / monism;
so there is nothing to accept / affirm / seek / do / perceive / know in absolute terms, nothing to reject / negate / abandon / not-do / not-perceive / not-know in absolute terms, just conventionally / relatively / inter-subjectively if it helps someone to get closer to the truth about the true nature of Reality as it is here & now;
so the best attitude is just to let them be, and transcend / purify / self-liberate them by directly perceiving / realising / abiding in their true nature (the Ground); to use them as possible temporary imperfect adapted skillful means while being fully aware of their true essence nature & dynamic, without any fixation / reification, without any illusion about them, without being fooled by them, without any grasping, without any attachment, without any di-vision between subject action & object, without becoming slave to them, while being totally free from them not without them}
All dharmas are like that. Everything in all Madhyamaka teachings comes down to these reasonings. Together they are like a self-arisen indestructible vajra; one facet supported by the others. Together they point to the Ground, and generate 'certainty' about the view, path and fruition.)

FRUITION MAHAMUDRA -- Third Jamgön Kongtrül Rinpoche

(Note: The true nature of reality is called here the "Ground" with its three qualities / characteristics: essence, nature, compassionate energy / dynamism.)


(Résumé: The indescribable / inconceivable true nature of Reality as it is here & now is pointed using concepts like:


  • the Ground / Mind / primordial Consciousness,

  • the inseparability / Union of the three kayas:

  • the inseparability / Union of the three qualities of the Ground;

  • the inseparability / Union of the Two Truths about the three spheres -- subject / mind, relation / action, object / phenomena --:

  • the inseparability / Union of the three spheres;

  • the inseparability / Union of opposites;

  • the Middle Way free from all extremes & middle, etc.)

* * *

“The fruition mahamudra is spoken of like this:


  • The GROUND is receiving the transmission of the innate trikaya;

  • The PATH is applying the key points of the view and meditation;

  • The FRUITION is the actualization of the stainless TRIKAYA.


Fruition mahamudra is the realization that relative appearances (as rupakaya) and mind (as dharmakaya) are, by their very nature, the [inseparable] three kayas.

* * *

To achieve this realization it is absolutely essential first of all to have a 

CLEAR UNDERSTANDING OF THE GROUND (i.e. endowed with three qualities), the proper view.


1. [ESSENCE:] // Dharmakaya // is the fact that whether one is talking about relative external appearances (objects) or the internal mechanisms of mind (subject) (or relations / actions / processes), by their very nature these are devoid of true existence (emptiness)

(i.e. 2nd truth: EMPTINESS -- meaning: "everything is empty of inherent existence <==> exactly because everything is conventionally dependently co-arisen relatively functional impermanent appearances, and vice versa. Something is co-dependent with its parts and/or wholes (when applicable), its cause & conditions and/or effects (when applicable), its conceptual opposite(s) (always), and as object co-dependent with the subject / mind merely labelling / imputing / conceptualising it, and with the relation / action / labelling / imputing / conceptualising").

2. [COMPASSIONATE ENERGY / DYNAMISM / POWER:] // Sambhogakaya // means that manifestation is unobstructed, and


(i.e. It is the inconceivable inseparability / interdependence / harmony / 

UNION OF THE TWO TRUTHS -- meaning: "even though everything is empty of inherent existence <==> everything is still conventionally dependently co-arisen relatively functional impermanent appearances -- body / physical, speech / conceptual, mind / mental fabrications --. Everything is normal displays of the Ground; parts of the Cosmic Song, Comic Dance, Magical Show;
with empty-dependently-co-arisen-relatively-functional-causes
or empty-dependently-co-arisen-relatively-functional-subjects
empty-dependently-co-arisen-relatively-functional-actions/functions empty-dependently-co-arisen-relatively-functional-objects."
This "inconceivable inseparability" is the power that makes things co-emerge from emptiness, that make the mind & world function. It is the "source" of all energies.)


3. [NATURE:] // Nirmanakaya // that appearances are numerous and manifold.

(i.e. 1st truth: APPEARANCES; conventionally dependently co-arisen relatively functional impermanent appearances -- meaning: "everything is conventionally dependently co-arisen relatively functional impermanent appearances <==> exactly because everything is empty of inherent existence -- body / physical, speech / conceptual, mind / mental fabrications --. In the case of the model where Reality is Consciousness / Awareness / Mind, then this nature is the clarity / luminosity / normal pure functionality of the Empty-Naked-Mind.)

(i.e. Note: This is true for all dharmas: self / mind & phenomena -- all (body / physical, speech / conceptual, mind / mental fabrications) x (individual, collective, cosmic) x (here, there) x (past, present, future) x (pure / nirvana, impure / samsara) -- all (subjects, relations / actions / functions / laws, objects) --.)

* * *

  • In the same way that dharmakaya (essence / emptiness) is inherent in mind (subject),
    (i.e. Union of the Two Truths about subject / mind:
    Union clarity / luminosity <==> emptiness)

  • the light of dharmakaya is inherent in appearances (phenomena / objects).
    (i.e. Union of the Two Truths about objects / phenomena & relation / action:
    Union dependently co-arisen appearances <==> emptiness;
    plus something that links appearances to the mind)

  • Mind (subject) and appearances (objects) are as INSEPARABLE (equal in emptiness)
    (i.e. Union of the three spheres: Union subject / mind <==> relation / action <==> object / phenomena)
    as the light of dharmakaya and its rays (rupakaya).
    (i.e. Union dharmakaya <==> sambhogakaya <==> nirmanakaya)

These are the key points of the view.

* * *

As the Mahamudra Prayer of the third Karmapa, Omniscient Rangjung Dorje, says:

  • If one looks at things (phenomena / objects), nothing is present (are empty of inherent existence), and one sees them as mind ( <==> because co-dependent with the mind / subject, and vice versa);
    ( = Union of the Two Truths about phenomena / objects)

  • If one looks at mind (mind / subject), there is no mind, (is empty of inherent existence)
    it is by its very essence empty; ( <==> because co-dependent with the phenomena / objects, and vice versa)
    (Union of the Two Truths about the mind / subject)

  • If one looks at BOTH (subject & object are co-dependent / co-emergent / co-evolving), one is self-liberated from the fixation on duality. ( <==> thus both are empty of inherent existence, and vice versa)
    (Union of the three spheres: Union subject <==> relation / action <==> object;
    or Union of the Two Truths about the three spheres -- subject, relation / action, object)

(i.e. Union of the three spheres: Union subject <==> relation / action <==> object. Union of the Two Truths about the three spheres -- subject, relation / action, object --. The three spheres are like a UNION of being EMPTY of inherent existence <==> exactly because inseparable / interdependent / co-defined / co-relative / CO-DEPENDENT / co-emergent / co-evolving / co-ceasing …; and vice versa. Dependently appearing & relatively functional <==> but empty of inherent existence; empty of inherent existence <==> but dependently appearing & relatively functional. One aspect implies the other (<==>). Using the tetralemma: these three spheres are not different / separate / multiple / dual, not identical / united / one / non-dual, not both together, not neither; not existent, not non-existent, not both together, not neither ...)


May we recognize LUMINOSITY, the nature of our MINDS. (unimpeded rays / natural conventionally dependently co-arisen relatively functional impermanent appearances / empty-manifestations)

(i.e. Union awareness / mind <==> clarity / luminosity / functionality / appearances;
Union appearances / dependent origination / functionality <==> emptiness.
Everything is part of a Magical Show, Cosmic Song, Cosmic Dance.)

  • If one looks at OBJECTS, that is, external PHENOMENA, and one has some understanding of their ultimate nature, one can realize that objects are not truly, permanently, and unchangingly present (emptiness), but are mere mental images (merely labelled / imputed by the mind; co-dependent with the subject / mind) -- it is mind which identifies them as one thing or another.
    (i.e. Union of the Two Truths about the objects / phenomena:
    Union of being dependently co-arisen with the subject / mind <==> thus empty of inherent existence.)

  • If one looks at the nature of MIND, one can see only the present moment of awareness or thoughts (relative functionality; co-dependent with the objects / phenomena / apparent world); other than this one experiences no mind. One sees the nature of mind, its emptiness, its lack of true existence.
    (i.e. Union of the Two Truths about the subject / mind:
    Union of being dependently co-arisen with the object / phenomena <==> thus empty of inherent existence.)

  • OBJECTS / PHENOMENA are not truly present (emptiness), but are merely projections of a mind (co-dependent with the mind) which itself (MIND) has no true existence (also empty because co-dependent with the objects / phenomena / apparent world); the appearance of phenomena is based on mind's LUMINOSITY. (and vice versa) (i.e. We cannot reduce everything to either the subject / mind only, or to the objects / phenomena only, or to relations / processes / actions / laws only, or to two/three together, or to none of them. Karma is the conventional interdependence / co-dependence / co-emergence / co-evolution of the subject / mind and object / apparent world and the relations / actions. Samsara / the karmic cycle is the dynamism of the Union of the Two Truths about the three spheres. Understanding and directly perceiving / realising / abiding in this, with total certainty, is enlightenment / transcendence / liberation.)

  • When one recognizes these two aspects (Union of the Two Truths about the three spheres), fixation on DUALITY / TRIAD / QUAD / ETC. -- ex. the separation between external appearances (OBJECTS) and internally fixating mind (SUBJECT) --
    DISSOLVES into itself (self-liberation / transcendence).
    There is nothing to reject and nothing to attain (accept)
    and one recognizes mind's luminosity (that all appearances / objects are co-dependent with the subject / mind <==> thus empty of inherent existence; thus like transparent / rainbows / reflections / dreams ...), its ultimate nature. 

(i.e. Realisation of the Union of the three spheres: Union of the Two Truths about the three spheres. And it works for all types of groups of conceptual opposites: dualities, triads, quads, etc.
Union of opposites: Union of being co-dependent with each other(s) and with the mind merely labelling / imputing / conceptualising them <==> thus empty of inherent existence, and vice versa. ex. Union right <==> left; Union body <==> speech <==> mind; Union subject <==> object; Union of the three spheres; Union of the three times; Union of the three kayas; Union of the three Jewels; Union of the Two Truths ...
That all appearances are mind's inseparable natural luminosity / functionality -- and that is perfect --, merely labelled / imputed / conceptualised by the mind.
The Middle Way free from all extremes & middle: nothing to accept / affirm / seek / do in absolute terms, nothing to reject / negate / abandon / not-do in absolute terms, just conventionally / relatively if it helps someone to get closer to a realisation of the true nature of Reality as it is here & now, of the Ground and its three qualities, of the inseparable three kayas.)


Ground mahamudra introduces one to the proper view, that is, to


(Note the "luminosity" term means that those appearances are like transparent / rainbows / empty of inherent existence. That is implicit in the term "Union" but not necessarily in the term "unity".)

(i.e. More completely: Enlightenment is directly realising the Union of opposites; the Union of the three spheres; the Union of the Two Truths about the three spheres; the Union of the Two Truths about anything & everything.)



(i.e. Union of the three kayas / Vajras / Spheres / qualities of the Ground

Union Dharmakaya / essence / emptiness / mind / subject <==> Sambhogakaya / compassionate energy / dynamism / speech / relation / action <==> Nirmanakaya / nature / appearances / body / object; = the fourth kaya: Svabhavikakaya / Vajrakaya.)

* * *



On this basis (i.e. the GROUND and its three qualities: Ground: Union of the Two Truths about the three spheres), 

one practices the PATH, the application of the view of meditation.

In terms of MEDITATION, by practicing [Meditation: Union of] shamatha and vipashyana, mind rests spontaneously in the experience of nonduality, the unity / Union of appearance and mind.


One realizes that MIND IS DHARMAKAYA and APPEARANCES ARE THE MANIFESTATION OF DHARMAKAYA (i.e. the Rupakaya -- physical, conceptual and mental fabrications / appearances), its light rays (i.e. luminosity / clarity; the magical show, cosmic song, cosmic dance).


In terms of action, one adopts the CONDUCT of a bodhisattva who has understood emptiness and compassion (Conduct: Union compassion <==> wisdom / emptiness; Union of the two Bodhicitta). This conduct reinforces meditative experiences and hastens fruition.

This is the path of view, meditation, and action; the practice of these three leads to a FRUITION, the actualization of the stainless TRIKAYA. (Fruition: Union of the three kayas)

(i.e. Union of Ground <==> Path (meditation, conduct) <==> Fruition)

* * *

  1. [ESSENCE:] Therefore, its essence is EMPTINESS, simplicity, dharmakaya.

  2. [COMPASSIONATE ENERGY / DYNAMISM:] lts manifestation is the [UNIMPEDED] LUMINOUS nature of sambhogakaya.

  3. [NATURE:] lts strength, MANIFOLD and unceasing, is nirmanakaya.

This is the sovereign of all REALITY.


  1. [ESSENCE:] Basic nature is devoid of true existence, since it is EMPTY and free from extremes: this is dharmakaya.

  2. [COMPASSIONATE ENERGY / DYNAMISM:] Out of dharmakaya or emptiness, free from extremes, appearances manifest UNOBSTRUCTEDLY. This is the luminous nature of sambhogakaya.

  3. [NATURE:] Out of the unobstructed luminosity arise the MANIFOLD MANIFESTATIONS of the nirmanakaya.


Therefore, the three kayas -- dharmakaya, sambhogakaya, and nirmanakaya 

(or Union of the Two Truths)-- pervade everything.

There is nothing that lies outside their scope, nothing that does not partake of their nature.


The nature of mahamudra is UNITY / UNION,

The realm of dharmas FREE FROM ACCEPTING OR REJECTING (i.e. the Middle Way).

(i.e. The Middle Way free from all extremes & middle: nothing to accept / affirm / seek / do in absolute terms, nothing to reject / negate / abandon / not-do in absolute terms, just conventionally / relatively if it helps someone to get closer to a realisation of the true nature of Reality as it is here & now, of the Ground and its three qualities, of the inseparable pure three kayas.)

The three kayas are not separate from each other. When one actualizes the dharmadhatu, the realm of phenomena, THE UNITY / UNION OF THE THREE KAYAS, there is no longer any distinction between samsara as a state of confusion to be given up and nirvana as liberation to be attained. (INSEPARABILITY / UNION SAMSARA <==> NIRVANA) In the unchangeable realm of dharmas this distinction no longer holds.

  1. Possessing the beauty of unconditioned BLISS,

  2. It is the great and vast wealth of WISDOM.

  3. It is the natural form of KINDNESS transcending thought. (i.e. Union bliss <==> wisdom / emptiness)

(i.e. Transcending in the sense of the Middle Way: becoming free from all fabrications -- physical, conceptual, mental -- including thoughts & concepts; being able to use them without grasping at them, without becoming slave to them, without thinking they are existing inherently / universally / separately / independently / absolutely. Free from them, but not necessarily without them. It is not about rejecting / negating / abandoning / no-doing them ...)


  2. THE UNITY / UNION OF SKILLFUL MEANS AND COMPASSION in the vastness of unobstructed, all-pervasive supreme WISDOM.

  3. Out of THE UNITY / UNION OF THESE TWO ASPECTS (UNION BLISS <==> WISDOM), the unconditioned great bliss of experiences and the depth of wisdom, the active KINDNESS of all buddhas and bodhisattvas manifests.

Thus, the state of omniscience (Enlightenment) is not a mere nothingness (i.e. mere emptiness), a total void, but rather the wealth of perfect wisdom. The inherent expression of this wealth of wisdom is the KINDNESS of all the buddhas and bodhisattvas that reaches all beings without obstruction. This kindness cannot be conceptualized, it is beyond any concepts one may have about it.

  1. Through prajna (wisdom / emptiness -- 2nd truth / essence), it does not dwell in samsara.

  2. Through karuna (compassion / conventionally dependently co-arisen relatively functional impermanent adapted skillful means -- 1st truth / nature), it does not dwell in nirvana.

  3. Through effortlessness, buddha activity is spontaneously accomplished (compassionate energy / dynamism / power / Union of the Two Truths).

(i.e. Fruition: Union of perfected virtues like immeasurable loving-kindness & compassion <==> wisdom / emptiness. Perfected = without any di-vision between subject, relation / action, object; with full awareness of the Union of the three spheres: the Union of the Two Truths about the three spheres.)


  1. Having achieved perfect WISDOM (emptiness -- 2nd truth / essence), the understanding of emptiness, the person who has actualized mahamudra is not caught up in samsara -- the three spheres of conditioned existence -- but rather experiences threefold purity.

  2. Having also realized perfect COMPASSION (conventionally dependently co-arisen relatively functional impermanent adapted skillful means -- 1st truth / nature), the accomplishment of skillful means, he or she does not dwell in a one-sided nirvana, a state of mere rest, the state that is achieved by the shravakas and pratyekabuddhas in their efforts to attain personal liberation.
    Out of the unity / Union of wisdom <==> and great, all-pervasive compassion
    (compassionate energy / dynamism / power of the Union of the Two truths)

  3. buddha activity for the benefit of beings is effortlessly and spontaneously accomplished.

* * *

The luminosity of GROUND and PATH ,

mother (Ground) and son (Path), dissolve together (Union).

The GROUND and FRUITION embrace one another (Union).

Buddha is discovered in one's mind: (Great Perfection / Trikaya / Middle Way)

The wishfulfilling treasure overflows within.

Ema. 'How wonderful and marvelous.'


(i.e. Union Ground <==> Path (meditation, conduct) <==> Fruition; Union of being empty of inherent existence <==> because inseparable / interdependent / co-dependent in harmony …, and vice versa.
Ground: Union of the Two Truths about the three spheres;
Path: Union of more and more subtle virtuous adapted skillful means / antidotes <==> combined with more and more wisdom / emptiness;
Fruition: Union perfected virtues / purified body, speech & mind <==> wisdom / emptiness; or Union of the three kayas).


The GROUND, the true nature of phenomena, and the experiences accumulated along the PATH dissolve together (Union). As has already been explained, this is described in terms of the meeting of mother and sun, the luminosity of the ground and the fruition of the path become one. This is the actualization of one's own innate nature. Thus, ENLIGHTENMENT is not something new that one acquires, nor is it found outside oneself -- like traveling to a foreign country -- but CONSISTS SIMPLY OF RECOGNIZING THE NATURE OF ONE'S OWN MIND (Union of the Two Truths about the three spheres / Trikaya).


Having recognized one's own mind and attained enlightenment, a treasure opens up inside oneself, for this attainment enables one to act for the benefit of all beings. It is truly wonderful and marvelous to have discovered Buddha in one's own mind and to have opened the wish-fulfilling treasure within. Since in the view of mahamudra Analysis does not apply, Cast mind-made knowledge far away.

Since in the meditation on mahamudra

Analysis (or not) does not apply,

Cast mind-made knowledge far away.

Since in the meditation on mahamudra

There is no way of fixating on a thought,

Abandon deliberate meditation.


Since in the action of mahamudra

There is no reference point / or any action,

Be free from the intention to act or not.

Since in the fruition of mahamudra

There is no attainment to newly acquire,

Cast hopes, fears, and desires away.


(i.e. The true nature of Reality / Mind / Ground is beyond all conceptualisation, discrimination / dualities, causality / production, forms / matter-energy, space & time; it is indescribable / inconceivable for our flawed / conditioned / conceptual / dualistic mental(s); it has to be spontaneously non-conceptually non-dualistically directly perceived / realised / abided in wihout using any conditioning / karma. It is directly realising the true nature & dynamism of the Ground with its three qualities; the Inseparability / Union of the Two Truths, the Inseparability / Union of the three spheres, the Inseparability / Union of opposites; the Middle Way free from all extremes & middle; the Inseparability / Union of the three kayas. Nothing to accept / affirm / seek / do in absolute terms, nothing to reject / negate / abandon / not do in absolute terms, just conventionally / relatively ...)


The view of mahamudra does not involve thinking that mahamudra or mind are one thing or another, nor does mahamudra meditation involve analyzing thoughts. While mind rests in itself, one SEES THE NATURE OF THOUGHTS DIRECTLY and realizes that there is no arising, cessation, or dwelling (beyond origination / birth, duration / life, cessation / death). Therefore, one should cast away mind-made representations about one's possible mental makeup and simply rest in the nature of mind. This is the view of mahamudra.


Mahamudra meditation should be free from any form of fixation on meditation. One should not think, "Now I am meditating . .. this is meditation ... this is not meditation." Free from any such ideas about meditation and without deliberately placing the mind in any fabricated state, one should just let the mind rest in itself. Mahamudra action is free from concepts such as ''I will do this, I will not do that.'' This is freedom from the intention to act or not.


We have seen that the PATH of mahamudra leads to a FRUITION that is not something that one must acquire anew. Since attainment is not something one lacks and must therefore obtain, one should cast away all hopes, fears, and desires that, in one's ignorance, one may have with regard to attainment. Notions such as "If I practice this, I will attain that and if I do not practice it, I will not attain it," are unnecessary.


(For more about Buddhist logic and the concept of "Union" see: https://www.gilehtblog.com/2020/10/buddhist-logic_18.html )


From: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10221108822688342&set=a.1026032369208&type=3&theater 


See also






The Prayer of the Three Kayas --Padmasambhava

Prayer by my beloved Guru Rinpoche to Wake Us Up!


Whatever appears to the eye,

The outer universe (OBJECTS), inner living beings (SUBJECTS) and all objects (RELATIONS / ACTIONS),

Leave them in their nature, without any grasping.


Pure from grasper (SUBJECT) and grasping (RELATION / ACTION) is the radiant and empty divine form (OBJECT).

I invoke the guru naturally liberated of desire and attachment.


Whatever is heard by the ear,

All sounds that are grasped as pleasant and unpleasant,

Let them remain in the nature of SOUND and EMPTINESS, free from thought (grasping).


Sound-emptiness unblocked is the speech of the Victorious Ones

I invoke the sound-emptiness speech of the Buddha.


Also whatever arises in the mind,

Thoughts of the five afflictive emotions,

Do not alter them with thoughts of the future or the past,

Let them remain in their own state liberating into Dharmakaya. (not accepting, not rejecting)


I invoke the guru of intrinsically liberated awareness.

The grasping at OBJECTS and appearance as “Outer” is purified. (self-purification)

The true nature of the clinging mind (SUBJECT) as “Inner” is liberated, (self-liberation)

And recognizing the “Middle” (RELATION / ACTION) - Luminosity – as one’s own nature, (recognizing mind's natural luminosity; nothing to accept ... nothing to reject ...)


Through the compassion of the Buddhas of the three times,

May the minds of all beings like me be freed!


Om Ah Hum Vajra Guru Padma Siddhi Hum!


Essence of mind ~ Mipham Rinpoche 

What we call “essence of mind (subject)” is the actual face of unconditioned pure awareness (true nature of the mind free from all defilements / obscurations), which is [directly] recognised through receiving the guru’s blessings and instructions.

If you wonder what this is like,

  1. it is empty (2nd truth -- emptiness -- dharmakaya) in essence, beyond conceptual reference;

  2. it is cognisant (1st truth -- dependently co-arisen relatively functional appearances / cognizance / clarity -- nirmanakaya) by nature, spontaneously present (inseparability, interdependence ... of the two);

  3. and it is all-pervasive and unobstructed in its compassionate energy
    (Union of the Two Truths -- sambhogakaya).

This is the rigpa in which THE THREE KAYAS ARE INSEPARABLE 

(Inseparability / Interdependence / Harmony / Union of the three pure kayas).

– Mipham Rinpoche 

from the book "Beyond the Ordinary Mind: Dzogchen, Rimé, and the Path of Perfect Wisdom"



"Dharma is the truth that surpasses relative truth and ultimate truth; 

yet enjoys the abundance of relative truth and ultimate truth."



(i.e. This TRUTH / REALITY is:

not relative truth / dependent origination only,

not absolute truth / mere emptiness only,

not both together,

not neither.

It is called the inconceivable 𝗨𝗻𝗶𝗼𝗻 𝗼𝗳 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗧𝘄𝗼 𝗧𝗿𝘂𝘁𝗵𝘀:

their inseparability, interdependence, co-dependence, harmony ...

That is the Ground, the infinite energy source of everything in both samsara & nirvana.)


Clarity and emptiness ~ Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche 

In essence, the mind is what is aware of everything — it is a CLARITY that perceives all external objects and events. But try to find it, and it turns out to be as impossible to grasp and as elusive as a rainbow — the more you run after it, the farther away it appears to recede; the more you look at it, the less you can find. This is the EMPTY aspect of the mind. 

Clarity and emptiness are INSEPARABLY UNITED in the true nature of mind, which is beyond all concepts of existence and nonexistence.

– Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche

from the book "On the Path to Enlightenment: Heart Advice from the Great Tibetan Masters"



The union of clarity and emptiness ~ Padampa Sangye 

CLARITY and EMPTINESS UNITED are like the moon reflecting in water;

People of Tingri, there is nothing to be attached to and NOTHING TO IMPEDE.

– Padampa Sangye

from the book "The Hundred Verses of Advice: Tibetan Buddhist Teachings on What Matters Most"



The Nature of Mind -- Mipham Rinpoche


(Union of the Two Truths about the three spheres),

Inexpressible and indestructible, like space.

In seeing it (object), there is no separate one (subject) who sees (action);

There is but a single, all-encompassing sphere (Union of the three spheres).

Even looker (subject) and looking (relation / action) are one and the same.

(Using the tetralemma, the three spheres are not different / separate / multiple / dual, not identical / united / one / non-dual, not both together, not neither; not existent, not non-existent, not both together, not neither ...)

This view of seeing all at once is unsurpassed,

A centreless, limitless, exceptional experience.

In this fruition in which what has to be done has been done,

There's no seeing at all (relation / action), and any wish to see,

Any deep longing to discover the view,

Is naturally destroyed from its very depths.

To arrive at such contentment and evenness

Is to be touched by brave Mañjuśrī's beneficent light."


Self-knowing wakefulness ~ Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche 

Recognize that your mind is THE UNITY / UNION OF BEING EMPTY AND COGNIZANT, suffused with knowing. When your attention is extroverted, you fall under the sway of thoughts. Let your attention recognize itself. Recognize that it is empty. That which recognizes is the cognizance. You can trust at that moment that these two - emptiness and cognizance - are an original unity / UNION. Seeing this is called self-knowing wakefulness.

– Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche

from the book "As It Is, Vol. 2"



THE NATURE OF MIND - Chökyi Nyima Rinpoche

The nature of mind, our Enlightened essence, is THE UNITY / UNION OF EMPTINESS AND COGNIZANCE. In this context, 'cognizant' means knowing without fixating on what is perceived. While the essence of this perception is empty, there remains a clarity totally devoid of conceptualization, a cognizance free from holding on to anything. This is the Mahamudra of cognizant emptiness. Simply rest in a natural state that is empty but at the same time vividly awake, cognizant, and free from fixation.



Robert Beer (2003: p. 186) states:

The trinity of body, speech, and mind are known as the THREE GATES, three receptacles or THREE VAJRAS, and correspond to the western religious concept of righteous thought (mind), word (speech), and deed (body).

The three vajras also correspond to the THREE KAYAS, with the aspect of body located at the crown (nirmanakaya), the aspect of speech at the throat (sambhogakaya), and the aspect of mind at the heart (dharmakaya)."

From Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three_Vajras 


Kayas refer to bodies. In the Mahayana we talk about two bodies or kayas: the dharmakaya and the rupakaya. The dharmakaya is the truth body, which is non-duality beyond all extremes. The rupakaya is the form body, which is all form and manifestation. These two correspond to 'emptiness' and 'form' in the Heart Sutra. When we speak of the 'Three Kayas' in the Vajrayana, the rupakaya is subdivided into the sambhogakaya and the nirmanakaya. The sambhogakaya is the body of mutual enjoyment, the body of bliss or clear light manifestation. The nirmanakaya is the created body, which manifests in time and in space.


(i.e. Correspondence between the three spheres, the three doors, the three vajras and the three kayas.)

1) Pure body = pure object / physical fabrications / nirmanakaya;

2) Pure speech = pure relation / action / conceptual fabrications / sambhogakaya;

3) Pure mind = pure subject / mental fabrications / dharmakaya;

4) Union pure body speech & mind = Svabhavikakaya / Vajrakaya: Union of the three kayas = Union of the three spheres = the inconceivable true nature of Reality as it is here & now = Union of the Two Truths: Union relative <==> absolute.

1-2) Rupakaya = nirmanakaya + sambhogakaya = conventional truth;

3) Dharmakaya = emptiness = absolute truth.

They are purified by the wisdom / awareness of their true nature.)


Three kayas:

1) dharmakaya,

2) sambhogakaya and

3) nirmanakaya.

The three 'bodies' of a buddha. They relate not only to the truth in us, as three aspects of the true nature of mind, but to the truth in everything. Everything we perceive around us is nirmanakaya; its nature, light or energy is sambhogakaya; and its inherent truth, the dharmakaya.



[Vajrakaya: Union of the three kayas = Union of the three Vajras = Union of the three spheres = Union of the three doors ...]

"We do not examine the kayas individually in order to develop a belief in their separate identity or expect the kayas to arise as separate, independent states. We look at each of the three kayas whilst remembering that this is a means to understand their unification, to understand the fourth all-encompassing sphere of the indivisibility of the kayas. ...

The fourth kaya is the unification of the three kayas and the reality of our existence. The three kayas are unified as the fourth kaya: Svabhavikakaya or Vajrakaya."



The Life and Liberation of the Mind -- Patrul Rinpoche


Mind itself has always been without substance.

It is not seen by looking, but is EMPTINESS.

It is not a void, but is COGNIZANT and clear.

This INSEPARABLE AWARENESS and EMPTINESS is pervasive like space.

You can steady it, but it moves aimlessly and unimpededly.

You can set it in motion, but it returns to its own natural state. Even without arms and legs, it runs about everywhere.

In motion, it does not disappear but returns to its own place.

Even without eyes, it sees everything.

But the experience of seeing turns into emptiness.

You cannot pinpoint any essence of mind,

And yet thoughts and impressions still arise.

It is NOT EXISTENT because it turns into emptiness.

It is NOT NON-EXISTENT because it thinks, sees and experiences.

The radiance of the UNION OF APPEARANCE AND EMPTINESS blazes.

The self-radiance of EMPTY YET COGNIZANT dharmakāya is clear.

Complete with the five wisdoms, it radiates fully.

The primordially pure natural state is spontaneously present,

The kāyas and pure realms appear without obstruction,

And the mother and child luminosities merge as one.

The natural state of mind, which is like this,

Have you realized it, all you realized ones?

Have you understood it, all you great meditators?

Put this into practice, all you yogis! ​

- Patrul Rinpoche


The most important attitude and practice ~ Kalu Rinpoche 

The essence of the Lama or Buddha is EMPTINESS

their nature, CLARITY

their appearance, the play of UNIMPEDED awareness.

Apart from that they have no real material form, shape or colour, whatsoever – like the empty luminosity of space. When we know them to be like that we can develop faith, merge our minds with theirs, and let our minds rest peacefully. This attitude and practice are most important.

-- Kalu Rinpoche



Emptiness and dependent origination ~ 3rd Jamgon Kongtrul Rinpoche 

Mind is by its very nature EMPTY

yet APPEARANCES ARISE from it without obstruction. 

Out of the UNOBSTRUCTED emptiness of mind the whole range of appearances can manifest without limit. 

On a RELATIVE level, phenomena manifest through dependent origination; this is INSEPARABLE from the emptiness of mind, which is the ULTIMATE level.

Freedom from extremes is realizing that emptiness and dependent origination are ONE (UNION) and do not contradict each other. 

Confusion lies neither in the appearance of things, nor in the fact that they are manifested by mind, but in one’s own misunderstanding of the emptiness and luminosity of mind.

-- 3rd Jamgon Kongtrul Rinpoche 



In the moment of love ~ 3rd Karmapa 

The play of overwhelming compassion being unobstructed,

In the moment of love the empty essence dawns nakedly.

May we constantly practice day and night,

The supreme path of unity (Union of adapted skillful means like loving-kindness & compassion <==> wisdom / emptiness), devoid of errors (The Middle Way free from all extremes & middle).

-- 3rd Karmapa



Primordially pure ~ Dudjom Rinpoche 

From the very beginning, awareness has never been established as being material and having characteristics that can be conceptualized, because its essence is primordially pure, sublime, all-pervasive emptiness. The ocean of realms of phenomena of existence and enlightenment naturally manifest as the DISPLAY OF UNOBSTRUCTED EMPTINESS, like the sun and its rays (inseparable). Therefore, awareness is neither partial nor a completely empty void because its nature is the supreme spontaneous presence of wisdom and noble qualities.

-- Dudjom Rinpoche 



Everything is mutually interpenetrating ~ Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche 

All aspects of phenomena are completely clear and lucid. 

The whole universe is open and UNOBSTRUCTED – everything is mutually interpenetrating.

-- Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche 



Free from the extreme of existence and that of nonexistence ~ Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche 

This EMPTY nature, the lack of intrinsic existence in phenomena, does not imply a blank naught in which there is nothing at all, as we find in the view of the nihilists. According to relative truth, all phenomena arise as a result of the INTERDEPENDENT conjunction of causes and conditions. This enables us to explain not only how samsara is formed but also it is possible to progress toward nirvana. There is no contradiction between the absolute nature and its INFINITE DISPLAY and, because of this, one is free from the extreme of existence and that of nonexistence.

-- Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche 



In the crystal mirror theater of awareness mind ~ Thinley Norbu Rinpoche 

In the crystal mirror theater of awareness mind the supreme artist performs his MAGICAL DISPLAYS, but rare is the clear insight audience capable of viewing this wisdom.

-- Thinley Norbu Rinpoche 



From: Flight of the Garuda by Keith Dowman.
SONG SEVEN: Assertion of our Intrinsic Buddhahood.

EHMAHO! Once more listen attentively, my noble sons and daughters. 

a) THE THREE MODES of buddha's being -- essence, nature and responsiveness -- 

b) and THE FIVE MODES of being, as well as the FIVE ASPECTS of primal awareness, 

all are completed and perfected in the naturally LUMINOUS intrinsic awareness of the here and now. 

(i.e. the are the luminosity / clarity aspect of the Union of the Two Truths about the mind: Union of clarity / luminosity / radiance / clear light / cognizance / functionality / dependent co-origination / relativity <==> and emptiness / absolute.)



1. The ESSENCE of Awareness, indefinable by any term such as colour, shape or other attribute, is the DHARMAKAYA

2. the inherent RADIANCE of emptiness is the light of the SAMBHOGAKAYA

3. and the UNIMPEDED MEDIUM in which all things manifest is the NIRMANAKAYA.

THE THREE MODES are explained figuratively like this: 

1. the dharmakaya is a crystal mirror (EMPTINESS); 

2. the sambhogakaya is its nature -- brilliant CLARITY

3. and the nirmanakaya is the UNOBSTRUCTED medium in which the reflection appears. (Union clarity <==> emptiness)

From the first, people's minds have existed as these three modes of being. If they are able to RECOGNIZE THIS SPONTANEOUSLY, it is unnecessary for them to practise even so much as a moment of formal meditation -- the awakening to Buddhahood is instantaneous.

In this introduction to the three modes they are defined separately. In truth, my heart-children, do not fall into the error of believing them to be separate, belonging to different continuums. 


From the beginning, the three modes of being are empty and utterly pure. Understanding them as a single essence that is the union of radiance and emptiness, conduct yourself in a state of detachment. (i.e. UNION OF THE TWO TRUTHS ABOUT THE THREE MODES / THREE KAYAS.)



Understanding these three as the mystic UNION OF EMPTINESS AND RADIANCE (UNION OF THE TWO TRUTHS), conduct yourself in a state of detachment.



1. Further, since the primal awareness of self-existing Awareness manifests everything whatsoever, this awareness is the pure-being of the Creator, Vairocana; 

2. since it is unchanging and unchangeable, it is the pure-being of Immutable Diamond, Aksobhya-vajra; 

3. since it is without centre or circumference, it is the pure-being of Boundless Light-form, Amitabha; 

4. since it is also the gem that is the source of supreme realization and relative powers, it is the pure-being of the Fountain of Jewels, Ratnasambhava; 

5. since it accomplishes all aspiration, it is the pure-being of the Fulfiller of All Ambition, Amoghasiddhi. 

These deities are nothing but the creative power of Awareness.

1. The primal awareness of Awareness is mirror-like awareness because of the manifest clarity of its unobstructed essence. 

2. It is awareness of sameness because it is all-pervasive. 

3. It is discriminating awareness because the entire gamut of diverse appearances is manifest from its creativity. 

4. It is the awareness that accomplishes all actions because it fulfils all our ambition. 

5. It is awareness of the reality-continuum, the dharmadhatu, because the single essence of all these aspects of awareness is primal purity. 

Not so much as an atom exists apart from these which are the creativity of intrinsic Awareness.

When a pointed finger introduces you directly and immediately to the three modes -- essence, nature and responsiveness -- and the Five Buddhas and the five aspects of awareness, all together, then what is experienced is brilliant, awakened Awareness unaffected by circumstance and uninfluenced by clinging thought; it is cognition of the here and now, unstructured and unaffected.

All the Buddhas of the three aspects of time arise from this Awareness. Constantly identify yourselves with it, beloved sons and daughters, because this is the spirituality of all the Buddhas of the three aspects of time.

Awareness is unstructured, natural RADIANCE your own mind, so how can you say that you cannot see the Buddha? 

There is nothing at all to meditate upon in it, so how can you complain that meditation does not arise? 

It is manifest Awareness, your own mind, so how can you say that you cannot find it? 

It is a stream of unceasing radiant wakefulness, the face of your mind, so how can you say that you cannot see it? 

There is not so much as a moment of work to be done to attain it, so how can you say that your effort is unavailing? 

Centred and dispersed states are two sides of the same coin, so how can you say that your mind is never centred? 

Intrinsic Awareness is the spontaneously originated three modes of being, which is achieved without striving, so how can you say that your practice fails to accomplish it? 

It is enough to leave the mind in a state of non-action, so how can you say that you are incapable of attaining it? 

Your thoughts are released at the moment of their inception, so how can you say that the antidotes were ineffective? 

It is cognition of the here and now, so how can you say you do not perceive it?

Via: Samuel Long 



In the mandala of mahamudra ~ Chögyam Trungpa 

In the mandala of mahamudra

Shines moonlight, pure and all-pervading,

All apparent phenomena are the play of the mind.

All qualities are complete within the mind.

-- Chögyam Trungpa 



The Nature of Mind Is the Non-Duality of Luminosity and Emptiness -- Khenpo Sodargye

"Ultimately, the nature of mind is not just emptiness. Rather it is the non-duality of luminosity and emptiness. The rainbow in the sky or the moon’s reflection in the water may look real, but their illusory nature is actually empty—while in the emptiness they absolutely appear. This is the ultimate reality realized through practicing on the master’s pith instructions. And once realized, one can be called an enlightened being—one who has attained liberation and is free from all suffering. ...

The nature of the mind cannot be understood as mere emptiness or nothingness. It’s the non-duality of luminosity and emptiness. Luminosity was the main subject of the Buddha Shakyamuni’s third turning of the wheel of Dharma. It means that although the mind has no intrinsic existence, its nature is clarity, so we can see whatever we see and hear whatever we hear.

As said in a sutrayana scripture:

 The mind is devoid of mind

 For the nature of mind is clear light.

Also from the King of Samadhi Sutra, it can be known that the mind is just like an empty shell:

 The reflection of the moon appears

 On the surface of a still clear lake,

 Yet the reflection has no intrinsic existence—

 Such is the nature of all things.

Just as the reflection of the moon has no intrinsic nature, but it undoubtedly appears on the water. Like the rainbow, in the moment of appearing, it is empty; while in the emptiness it absolutely appears. Our mind is the same—although it’s appearing, its nature is empty. So the mind’s nature is to be the non-duality of emptiness and luminosity, which is the utmost reality.

In order to realize these words, one should practice according to the pith instructions from the master. Throughout history, there’re many great masters—monastics and lay practitioners—in India and Tibet, who have achieved such a realization. Thus, they can be called mahasiddhas, the ones who have attained liberation from all suffering of samsara."

See video: http://khenposodargye.org/meditations/nature-mind-non-duality-luminosity-emptiness/ 


“Although all sorts of images appear in a mirror, they do not exist in any solid way (emptiness). But we have to understand that the same is also true for all the infinite manifestations of samsara and nirvana. The emptiness and the manifestation are indivisible: the emptiness cannot be separated from the manifestation. When we speak of emptiness and appearance, this does not mean that there are two things in the same way that we talk about the two horns of an animal. It means that there is no emptiness besides the manifestation and there is no manifestation besides the emptiness. Once we are free from clinging to this sort of duality, our concepts of existence and nonexistence will naturally fall apart. It is important to have a clear understanding – free from doubts – of this unimpeded manifestation.”

Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche – Zurchungpa's Testament Commentaries – on Concentration –Collected Works Vol III p 197, Shambhala


Mind’s unlimited capacity ~ Mingyur Rinpoche

Not recognizing natural mind is simply an example of the mind’s unlimited capacity to create whatever it wants.

– Mingyur Rinpoche

from the book "The Joy of Living: Unlocking the Secret and Science of Happiness"



"In brief, from the beginning, awareness has never existed as a substantial entity with elaborated characteristics (EMPTINESS), its nature is primarily pure, void, vast, and all-pervasive. 

As the RADIANCE (CLARITY / FUNCTIONALITY) of voidness is UNOBSTRUCTED, the ocean of phenomena of samsara and nirvana appears spontaneously, like the sun and its rays; thus awareness is not a blank nothingness, totally void, for its NATURAL EXPRESSION is the great spontaneous presence of the qualifies of primordial wisdom."

- Kabjye Dudjom Rinpoche - On The Path to Enlightenment by Matthieu Ricard


“The buddha's dharmakaya pervades the whole of samsara and nirvana. There are no samsaric karma and defilements outside of the dharmakaya. There is no nirvanic kaya or jnana outside of the dharmakaya. There is no such thing as samsara's dharmakaya being bad and nirvana's dharmakaya being good. Taking empty space as an analogy, the sun and moon above are pervaded by space, and the earth below is pervaded by space. All places where beings stay are pervaded by space. In the same way, there is nothing in samsara or nirvana that is not pervaded by emptiness. Since mind is empty, to understand its nature, the nature of that emptiness should be recognized. If there is no dharmakaya buddha, we cannot see the sambhogakaya and the nirmanakaya. That is why we have to meditate on the samadhi of suchness.”

Kyabje Dilgo Kyentse Rinpoche – 'The Four Abhishekas and the Three Samadhis' – Collected Works Vol III p 507, Shambhala)


Buddhism is all about truth. Samsara means not knowing the truth and enlightenment means knowing the truth. So, nothing is more important than truth in buddhism.

-- Goshir Gyaltsab Rinpoche


Truth is perfect and complete in itself. It is not something newly discovered; it has always existed. Truth is not far away; it is ever present. It is not something to be attained since not one of your steps leads away from it.

-- Dogen Zenji

from the book "Buddhism and Zen"

Via: Martin Dude







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