Monday, November 9, 2020

"Union" - 028


It is important to master the pointer-concept "Union of opposites".


The most important / useful concept in Buddhism: “Union”

It seems that the answer to all questions in Buddhism (and in general) is always understanding / perceiving / realising / abiding in the inconceivable “Union of some apparent opposites”. That makes the pointer-concept of “UNION” the most important / useful concept in Buddhism (and in general).


  • The Union of the Two Truths;

    • Union of appearance and emptiness;

    • Union of dependent origination and emptiness;

    • Union of conventional / relative and absolute;

    • Union existence and non-existence;

  • The Union of the three spheres;

    • The Union of subject, relation / action, object;

    • The Union of actor, acting, result;

    • The Union of perceiver, perception, perceived;

    • The Union of knower, cognition, known;

    • The Union of cause, causality, effect;

    • The Union of parts, composing, whole;

    • The Union of characteristic, characterising, characterised;

    • The Union of owner, owning, possession;

  • Non-duality / the Union of opposites in any duality / triad / quad / etc.;

  • The Union of yin and yang;

  • The Union of body / physical, speech / conceptual and mind / mental fabrications;

  • The Union of the three Jewels: Buddha, Dharma and Sangha;

  • The Union of the three kayas: dharmakaya, sambhogakaya, nirmanakaya;

  • The Union of samatha / calm abiding & vipashyana / insight;

  • The Union of virtuous methods / adapted skillful means and wisdom;

  • The Union of bliss and emptiness;

  • The Union of loving-kindness / compassion and emptiness;

  • The Union of functionality / cognizance / radiant clarity / vividness / luminosity and emptiness;

  • The Union of awareness and emptiness;

  • The Union of Ground, Path (meditation & conduct) and Fruition;

  • Union of the three qualities of the Ground -- essence, nature, compassionate energy / dynamism;

  • The Union of samsara & nirvana;

  • The Union of ordinary beings and Buddhas;

  • The Union of stillness and movement;

  • The Union of Mind and its displays;

  • The Union of the three times;

  • The Union of causality, matter-energy, space and time;

  • The Union of nothing and everything;

Even the concept of the Middle Way is to be understood as freedom from all extremes & middle -- the Union of opposites -- about anything and everything.

In the litterature, there are many synonyms to “Union”: inseparability, interdependence, co-definition, co-relativity, co-dependence, co-emergence, co-evolution, coalescence, harmony, unity, equality, non-duality, oneness, etc. But those terms are all mere pointers to the indescribable / inconceivable. So we have to be careful to not grasp any of those concepts, not to think “this is it”. So it is important to understand the real meaning and limits of those pointer-concepts synonymous to “Union”.

The “Union” of apparent opposites means that those opposites are not really in opposition / separate / independent / absolute / inherent; but are more like inseparable (one cannot exists without the other), interdependent (one implies the other, <==>), co-defined (one defines the other), co-relative, co-dependent, co-contingent, co-emergent, co-evolving, co-ceasing, in harmony, in Union / coalescence, equal / non-dual / one -- in the non-dual sense of those terms using the tetralemma

  • ex. not different / separate / multiple / dual, not identical / united / one / non-dual, not both together, not neither; 

  • not inherently existing, not completely non-existing, not both together, not neither; 

  • not permanent / discontinuous / eternal, not impermanent / continuous / annihilated, not both together, not neither; 

  • not purely objective, not purely subjective, not purely relational, not two or three of them together, not none of them; 

  • not dependent / interdependent / functional, not independent / non-functional, not both together, not neither; 

  • not empty, not non-empty, not both together, not neither; 

  • not dependently co-arisen / interdependent, not empty of inherent existence, not both together, not neither; 

  • not pure / perfect / equal / divine, not impure / imperfect / unequal / ordinary, not both together, not neither;

  • not conventional / relative, not absolute / universal, not both together, not neither;

  • not this/that, not non-this/non-that, not both together, not neither.

So the ultimate meaning of this Union of opposites is inconceivable for our flawed limited conditioned conceptual dualistic mental(s). It has to be directly perceived / realised / abided in without using this ordinary mental. It is beyond all description / conceptualisation, discrimination / duality, causality / production, form / matter-energy, space & time.

Union of the Two Truths about opposites: Union of opposites means that these opposites are always empty of inherent existence (2nd truth -- emptiness / not really existent) <==> precisely because they are co-dependent with each other(s), and as objects co-dependent with the subject / mind merely labelling / imputing / conceptualising them, they are conventionally dependently co-arisen relatively functional impermanent appearances (1st truth -- not completely non-existent); and vice versa. Empty but still appearing / dependently co-arisen and relatively functional; appearing but empty. One aspect implies the other (<==>).

All suffering come from not understanding / perceiving / realising the Union of apparent opposites like: the two truths, the three spheres, mind and its displays, samsara and nirvana, etc. And enlightenment / liberation is directly perceiving / realising / abiding in the true nature of Reality as it is here & now as pointed by the Union of the Two Truths about the three spheres -- about any group of opposites.

So it is very important / useful to master the meaning of the “UNION” free from all extremes & middle, and be able to automatically apply it to everything all the time -- specially to all Buddhist concepts and theories. We cannot understand Madhyamaka Buddhism without understanding the pointer-concept "Union". Without it, it is all contradictions, confusion, doubts, dead-ends. That is the solution to all of those problems. The doorway to certainty and a direct realisation.

For more about this concept of “Union” see:


Paths and Grounds of Guhyasamaja Tantra

21 states that make up the State of a Buddha

Question: What are the Yogas (States of Union) that constitute Buddhahood?

Arya Nagarjuna:  The 21 states of union which are included in the two types of union, "Union with a factor of abandonment" and "Union with a factor of insight" are:

  1. The state of union of Cyclic Existence (Samsara) and Cessation (Nirvana).

  2. The state of union of the afflicted class of phenomena and the liberated class of phenomena.

  3. The state of union of perceptions of objects with and without aspects.

  4. The state of union of subjective perception and objective phenomena.

  5. The state of union devoid of Eternalism and Nihilism.

  6. The state of union of Emptiness and Compassion.

  7. The state of union of Method and Wisdom.

  8. The union of those with and those without remainder.

  9. The union of the two Selflessnesses.

  10. The union of an Illusory Body and a Clear Light.

  11. The union of Thorough and Gradual Dissolutions.

  12. The union of the Two Truths.

  13. The union of entering and emerging from a Meditative Equipoise (Shamata).

  14. The union of sleep and wakefulness.

  15. The union of Meditative Equipoise and the post meditational period.

  16. The union of mindfulness and forgetfulness.

  17. The union of Bliss and Emptiness.

  18. The union of Objects and Action.

  19. The union of the Generation stage and Completion stage.

  20. The union of Purity and Impurity.

  21. The union of those with and without forms.


The Union of appearances and emptiness ~ Shechen Rabjam Rinpoche

Ultimate reality cannot be apprehended by concepts. We can, however, in an experiential way that transcends the ordinary conceptual mind, achieve a genuine understanding of reality as being the union of appearances and emptiness.

Shechen Rabjam Rinpoche

from the book The Great Medicine That Conquers Clinging to the Notion of Reality: Steps in Meditation on the Enlightened Mind 


The dance between emptiness and appearance ~ Tsoknyi Rinpoche

When you have achieved a state of calmness and readiness, then you are ready to know, ready to understand in a deep way the dance between emptiness and appearance. Once you catch a glimpse of that dance, don’t hang on to it. Just let it go, like your first glimpse of essence love.

-- Tsoknyi Rinpoche 


The Union of appearance and emptiness ~ Thrangu Rinpoche

When you dream of an elephant, does an elephant appear to your mind? Indeed it appears very clearly. Is there an elephant there? No. This appearance of an elephant in your dream is a union of appearance and emptiness. It appears, yet it does not exist – yet it appears. It is the same with all external phenomena. If we understand the example of the appearance of something in a dream, it is easier to understand how the mind appears yet does not exist, and does not exist yet appears.

-- Thrangu Rinpoche 


Fooled by appearance ~ Shechen Rabjam Rinpoche

If we recognize the unchanging, absolute nature of phenomena, we will also recognize their intangibility. Things appear yet are empty; they are empty yet appear. Emptiness is not the absence of phenomena, and phenomena are not the absence of emptiness. Rather, there is a union of appearance and emptiness. Just having a glimpse of understanding that things are not as they appear is already a big step toward seeing the true nature of things. We are like a naïve child who is easily fooled by appearances until we gain this understanding. In our confusion, we treat the phenomenal world as solid and real. We do not see that it is merely an expression of wisdom and the display of emptiness. We reify phenomena and this sets in motion an unending succession of attractions and aversions that lead to craving and desire. This one mistake, solidifying phenomena, gives rise to the endless cycle of samsara.

-- Shechen Rabjam Rinpoche 


Seeing clearly the Union of emptiness and the dependent arising of phenomena ~ Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche

Once you have understood the union of emptiness and the dependent arising of phenomena, you will see clearly how deluded and deceiving the ways of the world really are, and, like an old man forced to play children’s games, you will find them very tiresome. When you have realized the utter foolishness of spending your life attached to friends and scheming to subdue your enemies and competitors, you will find it tedious. Once you have been struck by the pointlessness of letting yourself be forever influenced and conditioned by your habitual tendencies, you will become sick of it. … That will inspire you to strive towards liberation — and by striving for it, you will attain it.

-- Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche

from the book The Heart of Compassion: The Thirty-seven Verses on the Practice of a Bodhisattva 


Everything is emptiness and dependent arising inseparable ~ 17th Karmapa

When we talk about emptiness, it has to be based on an understanding of the relativity of all things. Looking at ‘the reflection of the moon on water’, we can see that there is nothing there. Even that is dependently arisen, dependent on the existence of the moon and the water, on the ability of water to reflect. All of these things must come together to enable us to see the reflection of the moon on the water. That is emptiness. Emptiness and interdependence are inseparable. Everything is dependently arising; nothing exists on its own. Therefore, the nature of everything is emptiness. And because everything is emptiness and everything is interdependent, then everything is possible.

-- 17th Karmapa 


Five Stanzas on Love -- Union appearance and emptiness ~ Maitripa 

If it weren’t for the adored bridegroom

Of appearance as mere dependent origination,

The loving bride of emptiness

Would be no better than dead.

Emptiness is the most lovely bride,

A ravishing beauty beyond compare.

If he ever became separated from her,

That handsome bridegroom would be fettered in shackles.

Therefore, trembling with anxiety,

Bride and bridegroom turn to the guru,

Whose inborn kindness for them

Places their love right back to its original, innate state.

Ah, the genuine guru’s sagacity

And great skill are so wonderful

That those two become originally indivisible,

Nonreferential, and unsurpassable.

This couple is endowed with the abundance of all characteristics

And is free from the two extremes.

It is the nature of all that is, yet lacks a nature of its own —

Thus it always flourishes.

-- Maitripa 



A Vajra Song of Khenpo Rinpoche

I bow at the feet of Marpa the Translator

When you realize all sights to be

Inseparable appearance-emptiness

All the sights you see

Are oh so beautiful!

When you know all sounds to be

Inseparable sound and emptiness

All the sounds you hear

Are oh so beautiful!

When you realize your mind to be

Inseparable emptiness-clarity

The nature of your thoughts, you see

Is open, spacious, and relaxed!

When you know that this is how it is

Confusion and freedom

Are free just as they shine

Oh, how wonderful!

-- Khenpo Tsultrim Gyamtso Rinpoche in the Garden of Translation, Boudhanath, Nepal, January 26, 2000. 


The Truth Beyond Emptiness and Dependent Origination

Madhyamika Teachings

By Nargarjuna And Gyalwa Götsangpa

Everything in it is merely inseparable appearance and emptiness -- the union of the two truths.

Analysis of verses from Shenpen Ösel — the clear light of the Buddha's teachings which benefits all beings

Those whose intelligence has gone beyond existence and nonexistence and who do not abide in any extremes have realized the meaning of dependent arising, the profound and unobservable truth of emptiness.


Transcending existence and non-existence / the inseparability of appearance and emptiness / the union of the two truths: when one really understands dependent origination, then one transcends all extremes, like existence and non-existence. Because, the true nature of everything, including the mind, is beyond the four extremes of existence / realism, non-existence / nihilism / idealism, dualism and monism.

It is inconceivable, beyond all description / conceptualization, beyond causality space and time, beyond all dualities, beyond all karma formation. It is even beyond the conventional truths of dependent origination and of emptiness, beyond this duality. It is called the union of the two truths, the inseparability of appearances and emptiness. It transcends all. -- the two truths, like dependent origination and emptiness, are not different, not the same. 


“One does not think of the deity’s body as solid or material, made of flesh and blood like one’s ordinary body, or made of metal or stone like an idol. One thinks of it as appearance that is inseparable from emptiness, like a rainbow or like a reflection in a mirror.”

-- Kalu Rinpoche 


Training in the Union of the Two truths ~ Mipham Rinpoche

If one trains for a long time in the union of the two truths, the stage of acceptance (on the path of joining), which is attuned to primordial wisdom, will arise. By thus acquiring a certain conviction in that which surpasses intellectual knowledge, and by training in it, one will eventually actualize it. This is precisely how the Buddhas and the Bodhisattvas have said that liberation is to be gained.

-- Mipham Rinpoche

from the book The Adornment of the Middle Way: Shantarakshita's Madhyamakalankara with Commentary by Jamgon Mipham 


Union of relative and absolute


With two widely opened white wings ~ Chandrakirti 

With two widely opened white wings

Of relative truth (dependent origination) [skillful means] and absolute truth (emptiness) [wisdom]

The kings of swans [bodhisattvas] and their flock of swans [disciples]

Soar through the ocean of supreme Buddha qualities.

-- Chandrakirti 


[Union] emptiness and dependent origination ~ 3rd Jamgon Kongtrul Rinpoche

Mind is by its very nature EMPTY (essence),

yet APPEARANCES ARISE (nature) from it without obstruction.

Out of the unobstructed emptiness of mind the whole range of appearances can manifest without limit (compassionate energy / dynamism).

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

from the book “Cloudless Sky” 


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

This EMPTY (essence) 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 (nature) 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 (dynamism / power / compassionate energy) (Union of the Two Truths) and, because of this, one is free from the extreme of existence and that of nonexistence.

-- Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche 


Union Relative and Ultimate Bodhicitta ~ Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche

Unless we connect with the two types of precious bodhicitta, we will not approach enlightenment even in the slightest; this is certain. The two types of bodhicitta are relative bodhicitta, compassion, and ultimate bodhichitta, the insight into emptiness. Without these two, there is absolutely no way to take even one step closer towards buddhahood. Any Dharma practice devoid of these two kinds of bodhicitta will not bring the practitioner even one step toward enlightenment – I will swear to that.



Union of functionality and emptiness ~ 14th Dalai Lama

Nagarjuna said that for a system where emptiness is possible, it is also possible to have functionality, and since functionality is possible, emptiness is also possible. So when we talk about nature, the ultimate nature is emptiness. What is meant by emptiness, or shunyata? It is not the emptiness of existence but rather the emptiness of true or independent existence, which means that things exist by dependence upon other factors.

– 14th Dalai Lama 


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 


Resting within the essence of the mind: Union of clarity and emptiness or the Union of wisdom and the expanse ~ Thrangu Rinpoche

The method for taking all situations as the path is to rest within the essence of the mind. Within our minds, there are three aspects: the way things appear, how they are confused, and the way they actually are. We do not take our difficulties as the path in relation to how things appear or are confused, but in relation to how they actually are. We rest naturally within their nature — the clear and empty nature of the mind that is sometimes called the union of clarity and emptiness or the union of wisdom and the expanse. We rest within this, recognizing it. When we take sickness as the path, we look at the essence of the sickness without altering it in any way and just rest naturally within that. When we take the afflictions as the path, we just look at the essence of the greed, aversion, or delusion that has occurred. We do not follow the affliction or block it. We do not try to stop our thoughts. Instead, we look at those thoughts and at the afflictions that occur, and we rest naturally within their inherently empty essence.

Thrangu Rinpoche

from the book Vivid Awareness: The Mind Instructions of Khenpo Gangshar 


Know that mind is the unity / Union of clarity and emptiness ~ Mipham Rinpoche

The manifold mind, like a dream and an illusion,

Has no nature when analyzed;

All perceptions have the nature of the moon reflected in water.

Know that mind is the unity of clarity and emptiness.

When this is not merely conceptually determined, but

Comes to be understood within self-awareness, then

The wisdom body of all the buddhas –

The essential nature of the Dharma, the innate mind, and

The definitive meaning of the youthful Manjushri –

Is directly seen by non-conceptual awareness.

Mipham Rinpoche

quoted in the book Jamgon Mipam: His Life and Teachings 


The Mind Is Like Space -- Union clarity and emptiness ~ 17th Karmapa 

The essential nature of the mind is like space. There is no such thing as a mind that truly exists or a mind that is inherently established even though we might find reasonings, scriptures, or experience to the contrary. Mind is empty. Our ordinary mind, however, becomes confused in thinking that things really exist. The nature of our mind is EMPTINESS, but not a blankness, not the result of mere negation: emptiness is also RADIANT CLARITY, the basis for the appearances of both samsara and nirvana. The mind is like space and it also has a clear and knowing aspect, which allows us to say, “This is space.” Resting in mind’s EMPTY, CLEAR nature, we will be at ease as we move along the path of practice.

– 17th Karmapa

from the book "Music In The Sky: The Life, Art, And Teachings Of The 17Th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje" 


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" 


Self-knowing wakefulness -- Unity / Union emptiness and cognizance ~ Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche

Recognize that your mind is the unity 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. 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 (grasping) on to anything. This is the Mahamudra of cognizant emptiness. Simply rest in a natural state that is empty but at the same time [Union] vividly awake, cognizant, and free from fixation.


Union emptiness and luminosity ~ Maitreya

If what appears to be apprehended (object) does not exist by its very own essence apart from that (subject) which apprehends (relation / action) it, then what appears to be the apprehender (subject) does not exist either (empty). The reason, here, is that the apprehender (subject) exists in relation to the apprehended (object) (and apprehending / relation / action), not in isolation. Therefore, awareness is devoid of both apprehender (subject) and apprehended (object), in all their various forms. Free from subject and object (and relation / action), by its very own nature awareness is a mere indescribable luminosity.

(i.e. Union of the three spheres: The three spheres -- ex. subject / cause / actor / perceiver / knower, relation / causality / action / perception / cognition, object / effect / result / perceived / known -- are empty of inherent existence <==> exactly because they are inseparable (one cannot exists without the others), interdependent (one implies the others, <==>), co-defined (one defines the others), co-relative, co-dependent, co-contingent, co-emergent, co-evolving, co-ceasing / co-transcended, in harmony, in Union / coalescence, equal / non-dual / one -- in the non-dual sense of those terms, ex. not different / separate / multiple / dual, not identical / united / one / non-dual, not both together, not neither; not inherently existing, not completely non-existing, not both together, not neither ... and vice versa. One aspect implies the other (<==>). They are all merely labelled / imputed / conceptualised by the mind in dependence of its past / conditioning / karma. All natural manifestations of the true nature. Nothing to accept ... nothing to reject ... The Middle Way free from all extremes & middle.)

– Maitreya

from the book "Distinguishing Phenomena from Their Intrinsic Nature: Maitreya's Dharmadharmatavibhanga with Commentaries by Khenpo Shenga and Ju Mipham" 


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

"Ultimately, the nature of mind is not just emptiness. Rather it is the non-duality [Union] 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 [Union] 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 (emptiness)

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 [Union] 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." 


Awareness = Union radiance / functionality and emptiness

"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 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 


Analyzing the meaning of reality ~ Lama Tsongkhapa

By pacifying distractions to wrong objects

And correctly analyzing the meaning of reality,

Please bless me to generate quickly within my mind-stream

The unified path of calm abiding and special insight.

-- Lama Tsongkhapa

Foundation of All Good Qualities 


Achieving Union of samatha & vipashyana ~ Longchenpa

Below rocky cliffs,

a vivid sense of impermanence and disenchantment dawns,

clear and inspired, helping us to achieve

the union of calm abiding and penetrating insight.

-- Longchenpa

from the book The Life of Longchenpa: The Omniscient Dharma King of the Vast Expanse 


The Unity / Union of Samatha and Vipashyana ~ Tsele Natsok Rangdrol

Shamatha is generally held to mean abiding in the state of bliss, clarity, and non-thought after conceptual thinking has naturally subsided. Vipashyana means to see nakedly and vividly the essence of mind that is self-cognizant, objectless, and free from exaggeration and denigration. Put another way, shamatha is said to be the absence of thought activity, and vipashyana is recognizing the essence of thought.

Numerous other such statements exist, but, in actuality, whatever manifests or is experienced does not transcend the inseparability of shamatha and vipashyana. Both stillness and thinking are nothing but the display of the mind alone; to recognize your essence at the time of either stillness or thinking is itself the nature of vipashyana.

Shamatha is not to become involved in solidified clinging to any of the external appearances of the six collections, while vipashyana is the unobstructed manifestation of perception. Thus within perception the unity of shamatha and vipashyana is complete.

Vividly recognizing the essence of a thought as it suddenly occurs is shamatha. Directly liberating it within natural mind, free from concepts, is vipashyana. Thus within conceptual thinking shamatha and vipashyana are also a unity.

Furthermore, looking into the essence without solidly following after a disturbing emotion even when it arises intensely is shamatha. The empty and cognizant nakedness within which the observing awareness and the observed disturbing emotion have no separate existence is vipashyana. Thus the unity of shamatha and vipashyana is complete within disturbing emotions as well.

-- Tsele Natsok Rangdrol

quoted in the book Jewels of Enlightenment: Wisdom Teachings from the Great Tibetan Masters 


The unity / Union of shamatha and vipashyana ~ 3rd Jamgon Kongtrul Rinpoche

What does it mean to practice shamatha and vipashyana together? Shamatha involves letting the mind rest on an object in a state of concentration. Both mind and object lack ultimate reality. This true nature is present at all times, not only when one achieves insight into it through vipashyana meditation. Maintaining this awareness or insight in shamatha meditation – that is, not separating one-pointedness from awareness — is the unity of shamatha and vipashyana.

When a feeling or thought arises, what does it mean to unite “calmness movement, and awareness” through shamatha and vipashyana? Let us take the arising of anger as an example. First one notices that anger has arisen and acknowledges it. This corresponds to shamatha or mental calmness, that is, mindfulness which allows one to notice that a feeling has arisen. Based on this, one examines the feeling or thought by means of vipashyana. Calmness, movement, and awareness are the three phases that one examines. Calmness corresponds to the question: “where does the feeling or thought dwell?,” movement to the question: ”where does the feeling or thought go to?,” and awareness to the question: “what is present between the arising and the subsiding of the thought or feeling?” This form of investigation brings one to the realization that the feeling has no real existence.

-- 3rd Jamgon Kongtrul Rinpoche

from the book Cloudless Sky 


The Union of samsara and nirvana ~ Padmasambhava

When samsaric existence is freed in itself, there is no awakened state to accomplish apart from that. Once you realize this, samsara and nirvana are not two.

-- Padmasambhava

from the book Advice from the Lotus-Born 


Look into the mirror of your mind ~ Naropa

Naropa, you should strive

For Samsara and Nirvana's unity / Union.

Look into the mirror of your mind, which is delight eternal,

The mysterious home of the Dakini.

– Naropa

from the book "The Life and Teaching of Naropa" 


The path of Mahayana: Union adapted skillful means and wisdom ~ Kalu Rinpoche

The basis of the mahayana practice differs from the hinayana in that one does not practice abandonment, rejection, etc. Instead, in mahayana, one deals with one’s behavior in a manner of transformation. For example, if the desire to harm another sentient being arises on the crest of a wave of great anger, then one immediately applies the antidote of compassion; the energy of the anger is thereby transformed into compassion. One does not deal with an emotion simply by cutting it off; rather, one uses compassion to transform it on the basis of its inherent insubstantiality.

In their ignorance, sentient beings think all that they experience is real, and their misconception entails their experiencing a great deal of suffering. Ones sees that all sentient beings are experiencing the illusory manifestations of the three bodies (the fully ripened, the habitual tendency, and the mental bodies), and that they are completely locked in these illusions. Recognizing the habitual clinging of these three categories of sentient phenomena as being only illusory appearance, then one recognizes emptiness.

By recognizing that one’s delusion and habitual clinging cause suffering, an intense compassion can arise. The recognition of emptiness itself is referred to as wisdom, and the arising compassion is referred to by the term means. The path of recognizing the emptiness of these three categories of phenomena, and of developing compassion for all those experiencing such delusion, is the path of mahayana, and this path has its pinnacle in the union of means and wisdom.

-- Kalu Rinpoche

from the book Gently Whispered: Oral Teachings by the Very Venerable Kalu Rinpoche  



The essence of Buddhism: Union of compassion and emptiness ~ 17th Karmapa

As I grew up and began studying Buddhist philosophy and teachings, I discovered great harmony between Buddhism and the environmental movement. The emphasis on biological diversity, including ecosystems — in particular, the understanding that animate and inanimate beings are parts of a whole — resonates closely with Buddhism’s emphasis on interdependence. The essence of Buddhism lies in the union of compassion and emptiness: the deeply felt dedication to alleviate the suffering of all living beings and the understanding that everything is devoid of self‐nature. These two halves of a philosophical whole speak particularly to the goals of the environmental movement.

-- 17th Karmapa 


Compassion and emptiness inseparable / Union ~ Marpa

Non-conceptual compassion

And the primordial nature of emptiness

Are inseparable in the nature of simplicity.

You should understand all dharmas like this.

-- Marpa

from the book The Life of Marpa the Translator: Seeing Accomplishes All 


The supreme path of Unity / Union of compassion and emptiness ~ 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, devoid of errors.

-- 3rd Karmapa

quoted in the book Crystal Clear: Practical Advice for Mahamudra Meditators 


The bodhisattvas who have perfected the Union of wisdom and compassion ~ Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche

Those who practice the Dharma of the Mahayana in accordance with the Buddha’s intention are known as bodhisattvas. If you practice the teachings of the Mahayana, you can reach the level of the great bodhisattvas Avalokiteshvara and Manjushri, in the best case, or become like the Buddha’s two main disciples Shariputra and Maudgalyayana, who were gifted with insight and miraculous powers.

Even if you are unable to practice to the full in this life, you will at least be reborn among the principal disciples of the future Buddha, Maitreya. The buddhas being those who have totally conquered the enemies of ignorance and the other emotions, they are often referred to by the synonym ‘Victorious Ones,’ while bodhisattvas, in many texts including the Tibetan original of the root verses of these teachings, are called ‘children of the Victorious Ones’.

Who, then, are the children of the buddhas? In the case of Buddha Shakyamuni, the child of his body was his physical son, Prince Rahula. The children of his speech were all those who heard him teach and attained the level of arhart – the great beings such as Shariputra, Maudgalayana, the sixteen arhats and others, who became the holders of his teachings.

Above all, the children of the buddha’s mind are the great bodhisattvas like Avalokiteshvara and Manjushri, who carry out their noble intention to bring all beings to enlightenment.

For, just as a great monarch with a thousand children would choose the one with the most perfect qualities to be his heir, so, too, a buddha regards as his authentic heirs the bodhisattvas who have perfected the union of wisdom and compassion.

-- Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche

from the book The Heart of Compassion: The Thirty-seven Verses on the Practice of a Bodhisattva 



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), 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 or functionality / cognizance / clarity -- nirmanakaya) by nature, spontaneously present;

3. and it is all-pervasive and unobstructed in its compassionate energy [dynamism] (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 -- Svabhavikakaya / Vajrakaya).

– Mipham Rinpoche 

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


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. (Union of the Two Truths)

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 


A Festival of the Field for Gathering Merit -- joy descending as the Union of the three kayas ~ 17th Karmapa

Om tara tuttare ture soha.

Ah ho,

The essential nature of simplicity is the ground’s ever pure expanse.

When set the enchanting music of a clear and radiant knowing, naturally present.

And matured by the jeweled rain of joy descending as the union of the three kayas,

The sovereign one, the ultimate lama, arises remembered in the center of my heart.

The enlightened activity of your three gates illuminates like a garland of the sun’s rays.

The hundred thousand lights of your virtuous actions spontaneously

Create a cooling shade to ease the pain of fortunate disciples;

A lotus of the three joys unfolds in the center of their hearts.

The lotus of this life with its leisure and resources holds in its center

A stamen that befriends a mellifluous bee with its honey of renunciation.

Grant your blessing that the true lama’s lotus feet are bathed by the sun

And the abundant petals of benefit for others open forth.

Gazing at the very face of primordial wisdom, luminous and self-arisen from the natural state,

And resting at ease on the path, with nothing to add or take away

Grant your blessing that I take the royal seat, present from time without beginning

In the expanse of emptiness – dharmakaya’s true nature, ultimate reality.

In the sky, an umbrella of white clouds forms a rainbow canopy above.

Between sky and earth, flowers of virtue and excellence fall in a gentle rain.

On the earth, filled with happiness, people sing in great delight;

May this joy enrapture the whole world.

A sincere intention free of fault is a jeweled lamp, a luminous treasury

That liberates every being from a dense darkness where virtue cannot go.

May the dulcet melody of incomparable fame, the celestial music

For the festival of a golden age without end, resound throughout the three realms.

This prayer was written by Ogyen Trinley Dorje on September 4, 2001 as the sun came over the dome of the eastern mountain. May it be a cause for virtue.

-- 17th Karmapa

from the book Music In The Sky: The Life, Art, And Teachings Of The 17Th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje 


The flow of life appears as a rainbow -- Bliss and void inseparable ~ 7th Dalai Lama

Your mind absorbed in bliss and void inseparable, the flow of life appears as a rainbow. One body endlessly sending forth clouds of emanations to set this world ablaze with joy.

-- 7th Dalai Lama

from the book The Dalai Lama's Secret Temple 



Advice for a King -- Stillness and movement inseparable / Union ~ Katok Rigdzin Tsewang Norbu

Svasti. You might have a hundred or a thousand teachers,

But the one who introduces you to mind’s nature is supreme,

Superior in kindness even to the Buddha —

To the root guru, I bow down in homage.

The very essence of your own mind,

Is entirely beyond arising, ceasing and remaining —

This is what followers of the Great Perfection

Call rigpa, pure and open awareness.

The essence of this approach is none other than

Taking this awareness as the path,

In undistracted, non-meditation —

So, without distraction, sustain the genuine nature.

What we call ‘stillness and movement inseparable’

Means that in stillness, which is beyond arising,

There is movement, which is beyond cessation —

Stillness and movement, arising and ceasing, are thus inseparable.

Undistracted awareness is the path of the Victorious,

And distraction is the playground of saṃsāra.

So maintain awareness without distraction,

Continuously, both day and night.

The nature of mind is clear light.

Sullying thoughts are to be purified.

But movement must neither be rejected nor indulged.

The stirrings of mind must naturally free themselves.

The source of virtuous action

Is none other than devotion for the guru.

So exert yourself in guru yoga,

And avoid sporadic practice.

There is no limit to what could be said,

But now is the time for essential practice,

So may this short explanation

Cause experience and realization to increase just like the waxing moon.

-- Katok Rigdzin Tsewang Norbu 


Released from all entanglements ~ Sengcan

To understand the mystery of this One-essence

is to be released from all entanglements.

When all things are seen equally

the timeless Self-essence is reached.

No comparisons or analogies are possible

in this causeless, relationless state.

Consider motion in stillness

and stillness in motion;

both movement and stillness disappear.

When such dualities cease to exist

Oneness itself cannot exist.

To this ultimate finality

no law or description applies.

-- Sengcan 


View, meditation, conduct and result ~ Dudjom Rinpoche

The realization that all phenomena of samsara and enlightenment are emptiness inseparable / Union from naked awareness is the view.

To release present awareness within the spacious natural state and then to sustain the self-liberation of thoughts without grasping is meditation.

All post-meditative activity done harmoniously with the Dharma is the conduct.

The complete manifestation of that abiding nature is the result.

-- Dudjom Rinpoche

from the book Wisdom Nectar: Dudjom Rinpoche's Heart Advice 


Mind and thought inseparable / Union ~ Mingyur Rinpoche

The mind itself and the thoughts, emotions, and sensations that arise, abide, and disappear in the mind are equal expressions of emptiness—that is, the open-ended possibility for anything to occur. If the mind is not a “thing” but an event, then all the thoughts, feelings, and sensations that occur in what we think of as the mind are likewise events. As we begin to rest in the experience of mind and thoughts as inseparable, like two sides of the same coin, we begin to grasp the true meaning of clarity as an infinitely expansive state of awareness.

-- Mingyur Rinpoche

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


Inseparability / Union of mind / emptiness and unsurpassable qualities ~ Maitreya

The disposition is empty of the adventitious stains,

Which are characterized by their total separateness.

But it is not empty of the unsurpassed qualities,

Which have the character of total inseparability.

-- Maitreya

Uttaratantra Shastra, I, 155 


Mind’s ultimate nature -- inseparability / Union of emptiness and vividness ~ Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

Mind’s ultimate nature, emptiness endowed with vividness,

I was told is the real Buddha.

Recognizing this should help me

Not to be stuck with thoughts of hierarchy.

Mind’s ultimate nature, its emptiness aspect,

I was told is the real Dharma.

Recognizing this should help me

Not to be stuck with thoughts of political correctness.

Mind’s ultimate nature, its vivid aspect,

I was told is the real Sangha.

Recognizing this should help me

Not to be stuck with thoughts of equal rights.

One cannot disassociate emptiness from vividness.

This inseparability I was told is the Guru.

Recognizing this should help me

Not to be stuck with depending on chauvinist lamas.

This nature of mind has never been stained by duality,

This stainlessness I was told is the deity.

Recognizing this should help me

Not to be stuck with the categories of “gender” or “culture.”

This nature of mind is spontaneously present.

That spontaneity I was told is the dakini aspect.

Recognizing this should help me

Not to be stuck with fear of being sued.

-- Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche 



Union of diversity / manyness / duality and unity / oneness / non-duality ~ Shantarakshita

Within emptiness, everything exists in a harmonious state,

Whether it is good, bad, beautiful, or ugly.

Just as all the oceans have the flavor of salt,

The diversity of things participates in the unity of emptiness.

-- Shantarakshita

quoted in the book The Ninth Karmapa, Wangchuk Dorje's Ocean of Certainty 


The unity / non-duality / Union of subject & object, Union of coarse and fine  ~ Sengcan

Things are objects because there is a subject or mind;

and the mind is a subject because there are objects.

Understand the relativity of these two

and the basic reality: the unity of emptiness.

In this Emptiness the two are indistinguishable

and each contains in itself the whole world.

If you do not discriminate between coarse and fine

you will not be tempted to prejudice and opinion.

-- Sengcan 


The road to nonduality ~ Sengcan

One thing, all things;

move among and intermingle,

without distinction.

To live in this realization

is to be without anxiety about nonperfection.

To live in this faith is the road to nonduality,

because the nondual is one with the trusting mind.

-- Sengcan 



Transcending both nonduality and duality ~ Chögyam Trungpa

You have to go beyond duality and you also have to go beyond nonduality at the same time. You have to return to duality: that is the final goal. It is like the ox-herding pictures: finally you return to the world, with a big belly and with the ox behind you. That picture, returning to the world, is the final point. So you have duality; then you discover nonduality because of duality; then you transcend both nonduality and duality because of them.

-- Chögyam Trungpa

from the book The Teacup & the Skullcup: Chogyam Trungpa on Zen and Tantra 


Absolute bodhicitta ~ Mingyur Rinpoche 

Absolute bodhicitta is the direct insight into the nature of mind. Within absolute bodhicitta, or the absolutely awakened mind, there is no distinction between subject and object, self and other; all sentient beings are spontaneously recognized as perfect manifestations of buddha nature.

-- Mingyur Rinpoche

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


Beyond [Union of] good and evil ~ Milarepa 

Comprehending beyond good and evil

opens the way to perfect skill.

Experiencing the dissolution of duality,

you embrace the highest view.

-- Milarepa

quoted in the book Songs of Spiritual Experience: Tibetan Buddhist Poems of Insight and Awakening 


The essence of the guru ~ Lama Yeshe 

The essence of the guru is wisdom: the perfectly clear and radiant state of mind in which bliss and the realization of emptiness are inseparably unified.

-- Lama Yeshe

from the book Introduction to Tantra: The Transformation of Desire 


Examination of Time -- Union of the three times, Union of opposites , Union entities, space and time ~ Nagarjuna

If the present and the future

Depend on the past,

Then the present and the future

Would have existed in the past.

If the present and future

Did not exist there,

How could the present and the

Future be dependent on it?

Without depending on the past,

Neither of the two could be established.

Therefore neither the present nor

The future could exist.

By this very method, without substitution,

The remaining two; as well as …

Superior, inferior, average, etc.; and

Unity, etc., should be understood.

A non-enduring time is not grasped

Nothing one could grasp as time

Could exist as enduring.

If time is not grasped, how it is known?

If time depends on a entity

Then without an entity how could time exist?

Since there are no entities at all,

How could time exist?

-- Nagarjuna

from the book The Fundamental Wisdom of the Middle Way: Nagarjuna's Mulamadhyamakakarika 



Within Dharmakāya,

1) which is Appearance-Emptiness nondual (UNION),

2a) one experiences Samsara and Nirvana as one (UNION).

2b) When sentient beings and Buddhas merge (UNION),

One has perfected ONE-TASTE (UNION).

- Milarepa


In the realm of mind essence ~ Milarepa

Veiled by ignorance,

The minds of man and Buddha

Appear to be different;

Yet in the realm of Mind Essence

They are both of one taste.

Sometimes they will meet each other

In the great Dharmadhatu.

-- Milarepa

from the book The Hundred Thousand Songs Of Milarepa 


The Innate Beyond Subject And Object ~ Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche 

Phenomena (objects) are the radiance of the innate absolute (Union radiance & emptiness);

Mind (subject)’s nature is the wisdom of the innate absolute (Union wisdom & emptiness).

The ultimate teacher – phenomena (object) and mind (subject) merged in one taste (Union subject & object)

Dwells naturally within myself. Ah ho! What a joy!

-- Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche 



Outer and inner universe ~ Mingyur Rinpoche

Nothing in your experience – your thoughts, feelings, or sensations – is as fixed and unchangeable as it appears. Your perceptions are only crude approximations of the true nature of things. Actually, the universe in which you live (objects) and the universe in your mind (subject) form an integrated whole.

-- Mingyur Rinpoche

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


Let appearance and awareness be indivisible ~ Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche

Do not divide appearances (OBJECTS / UNIVERSE) as being there and awareness (SUBJECT) as being here. Let appearance and awareness be indivisible.

(i.e. Union of the three spheres: Union subject / mind / awareness <==> relation / action <==> object / phenomena; Union subject / actor / perceiver / knower <==> relation / action / perception / cognition <==> object / result / perceived / known.)

-- Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche

from the book Vajra Speech: A Commentary on The Quintessence of Spiritual 



The ensō symbolizes absolute enlightenment, strength, elegance,

the universe (everything), and mu (the void) (nothing).

(or the Union of the Two Truths)


When we say that the PRIMORDIAL AWARENESS (ABSOLUTE) IS INHERENT OR CO-EMERGENT WITH [ORDINARY] MIND (CONVENTIONAL / RELATIVE), it means it has always been there from the very beginning. There was never any separation from that buddha nature. Without trying to alter this nature in any way, let it arise by itself. This is why it is said that there are no other practices to be done besides practicing on the mind, and why the eighty-four thousand sections of the Buddha’s teaching are all aimed at the recognition of the nature of mind.”

-- Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche - Commentaries on Jamgön Mipham Rinpoche's 'The Lamp that dispels darkness' Collected Works Vol III pg 689, Shambhala


"conceptual mind and naked awareness arise as a co-emergent unity"

~ Ŧoƞpa Ɉoƞ 


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

[UNION] 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 the book Magic Dance: The Display of the Self-Nature of the Five Wisdom Dakinis 


The Union of Mahamudra and Dzogchen ~ Karma Chagme


The Sutras, tantras, and philosophical scriptures are extensive and great in number.

However, life is short and intelligence limited, so it is hard to cover them completely.

You may know a lot, but if you don’t put it into practice,

It’s like dying of thirst on the bank of a great lake.

The scriptures of the sutras and tantras and the words of the learned and accomplished ones of India and Tibet.

All have great blessings but are difficult for ordinary people to grasp.

Though they are indispensable for teaching in a monastic college,

For one-pointed practice they are of little use.

This ‘pointing-out instruction for an old lady’ is more beneficial for your mind than all of the others.

All the innumerable and profound teachings, such as Mahamudra and Dzogchen,

Which are decisive and unmistaken in each root text,

Are indispensable when teaching disciples who will hold the Dharma-lineages.

But for personal practice, for the sake of the future.

It is more profound to condense them all into one.

To grasp precisely and unmistakably the various traditions of the Dharma

Is necessary for upholding the doctrinal teachings.

But if you are concerned with the welfare of your future,

It is more profound to train in being nonsectarian, seeing all of them as being pure.

It is necessary to focus your mind on one single and sufficient master.

If you are to be his chief disciple.

But if you wish to have the virtues if experience and realization dawn within you.

It is more profound to combine all the teachers you have met into one.

And to visualize him the Buddha resting on our crown and to supplicate him.

The different recitations for various development stage practices

Of numerous yidam deities in the sections of tantras

Are indispensable if you are to give empowerments as a great master.

But as a means for purifying your own obscurations and attaining enlightenment,

It is more profound to practice one deity and mantra that includes them all.

The innumerable practices of the completion stage, with and without reference point,

Are indispensable for expounding the countless meditation manuals.

But as a means for the virtues of experience and realisation to dawn within you,

It is more profound to sustain the essence, which is the embodiment of them all.

There are many ways of demonstrating the view,

Such as cutting through fabrications from the outside and from within.

But, just as smoke vanishes when the flames in the fireplace are extinguished,

It is more profound to cut through the root of mind.

Although there are numerous meditation techniques,

both with and without concepts,

It is more profound to practice the unity / Union of luminosity and emptiness,

The development stage completed by mere recollection.

Although there are numerous kinds of behaviour, high and low, coarse and precise,

It is more profound to exert as much as you can in practicing

and abandoning evil deeds.

Although numerous details have been taught about attainment, the time of reaching fruition,

It is more profound to possess the definite certainty of attainment.

After having unmistakably practiced the view, meditation, and action.

Although bodhisattvas who have accomplished the levels

Are not obscured even by serious wrongdoings or misdeeds

done for the sake of the teachings,

Since someone like us has to fear the lower realms,

It is more profound to shun, without involvement,

wrongdoings and severe faults.

Moreover, without self-interest and for the general benefit of beings

It is profound to seal your practices, such as offering and giving, copying teachings, and reciting texts,

With a dedication free from conceptualising the three spheres.

-- Karma Chagme

quoted in the book Jewels of Enlightenment: Wisdom Teachings from the Great Tibetan Masters 


Yab-yum - Wikipedia

Yab-yum (Tibetan literally, "father-mother") is a common symbol in the Buddhist art of India, Bhutan, Nepal, and Tibet. It represents the primordial union of wisdom and compassion, depicted as a male deity in union with his female consort through the similar idea of interpenetration or "coalescence", using the concept of Indra's net to illustrate this. The male figure represents compassion and skillful means, while the female partner represents insight. In yab-yum the female is seated on the male’s lap. There is a rare presentation of a similar figure but reversed, with the male sitting on the female’s lap, called yum-yab. 


Symbols for the "Union" of opposites: ࿊ ࿋ ࿌

Taijitu ... ☯ 



The gankyil symbolizes the inseparability of all of the groups of three in Dzogchen teaching, such as the Base, Path, and Fruit.

Associated triads:

  • Ground, path and fruit

  • Three humours of traditional Tibetan medicine

  • Learning, Reflection and Meditation

  • Mula dharmas of the path

  • Essence, Nature and Energy

  • Triratna doctrine

  • Three Roots

  • Three Higher Trainings

  • Three Dharma Seals

  • Three Turnings of the Wheel of Dharma

  • Trikaya doctrine

  • Three cycles of Nyingmapa Dzogchen

  • Three Spheres

  • Sound, light and rays

  • Three lineages of Nyingmapa Dzogchen

  • Three aspects of energy in Dzogchen doctrine 








No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.