using the arrow buttons.
by clicking on the page.
the page around when zoomed in by dragging it.
the zoom using the slider when zoomed-in.
by clicking on the zoomed-in page.
by entering text in the search field, and select "This Issue" or "All Issues"
by clicking on thumbnails to select pages, and then press the print button.
displays sections with thumbnails and descriptions.
displays a slider of thumbnails. Click on a page to jump.
allows you to browse the full archive.
about your subscription?
Buddhadharma : Spring 2016
spring 2016 buddhadharma: the practitioner’s quarterly 49 who had been trying to experience awakening. Pal- trul Rinpoche had been pointing out the nature of mind again and again, and the student never got it. So one evening, Paltrul Rinpoche said, “Okay, come on, let’s take a walk.” They went to a meadow, and while they were sitting there, Paltrul Rinpoche said to his student, “Lungtok, can you see the stars in the sky?” Lungtok said yes. “And can you hear the dog’s barking from Dzogchen monastery?” He said yes. “And can you understand in your mind what I’m saying to you?” He said yes, and Paltrul Rinpoche said, “That’s it.” And that’s when the stu- dent got it. AyyA TAThAALOKA: I think what enlightenment looks like depends upon who is looking and how they’re looking. There will be those whose minds are so distracted or mired in various delusions that they may look at an enlightened person and not see anything special at all. Others who are at a differ- ent stage may see the enlightened person’s radiance, clarity, and sense of power or ease. As I mentioned earlier, I tend to think of enlightenment more in terms of what is absent: obsessions, grasping, aver- sion, resentment, fear, doubt, discontent. All of the energy that normally goes into running those things is then free, present, and liberated. I do see a lot of people suffering due to confusion about the stages of enlightenment or awakening. In the early Buddhist teachings, there’s no expecta- tion that a stream-enterer will have gotten rid of all desire or won’t ever be irritated about anything— that would be a further stage of the path. It’s easy to assume an awakening is not real if all of one’s prob- lems are not gone. Practitioners can become disap- pointed and lose faith. There can be real awakening experiences that do last, but that doesn’t normally mean that everything is resolved at once. There’s still the path of practice. BuDDhADhARMA: In your experience, are the people coming into your centers looking for enlighten- ment? And if not, do you feel they should be? GAELyN GODWIN: There’s a lot of confusion about what enlightenment is and whether it should be emphasized or made a priority in Zen practice. It’s a question that I’ve turned my attention to more in recent years. In my early training, it wasn’t talked about. We like to say, “Practice without a goal,” and wanting enlightenment was considered having a goal in practice. You have to have a very deep desire to practice in order to understand that enlighten- ment is a goal beyond a goal. Here in Houston, a lot of people are interested in learning about meditation as a means of stress relief. But I find that people also want to wake up, and it is a topic they bring up when they come. There’s more work to be done in helping practi- tioners understand that even while there is such a thing as awakening, it doesn’t mean you become a different person. Even if the roots of various obscu- rations are cut, karmic habits still continue. Each person’s awakened nature will still look like an indi- vidual, unique being. PONLOP RINPOChE: There’s a mix of reasons why people walk into a dharma center. Many come for mindfulness practice that can help them cope with stress at work and elsewhere in life. But I would say the majority of people are hoping to experience something deeper, the nature of mind awakening. Enlightenment isn’t something you learn about at home or school; it’s not something you see on bill- boards or in Google advertising. It’s a new concept for most people, but I think it becomes more and more appealing once they get a glimpse or taste of it. BuDDhADhARMA: Ayya Tathaaloka, how important do you think it is for Theravada practitioners to Once we get a glimpse of the nature of mind, we have a sense of awakening that becomes an actual part of our mind. It’s no longer just a theory; it becomes a reality, an experience. —Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche