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Buddhadharma : Summer 2010
buddhadharma: the practitioner’s quarterly summer 20 1 0 72 Reviews is in the Buddhist literary heritage, full of wordplay, allusion, and metaphor. In Entrance to the Great Perfection, Cortland Dahl takes a much more tradi- tional approach to the Dzogchen teach- ings. In his presentation, context is all. His introduction lays out the path, from the Longchen Nyingtig preliminary practices, or ngöndro, to the tantric development and completion stages and Dzogchen itself. The Longchen Nyingtig ngöndro, revealed by the eighth-century hermit Jigme Lingpa, has been translated before and is presented in Patrul Rinpoche’s Words of My Perfect Teacher. Yet Dahl offers a valuable contribution for those engaging in this practice. Included here is a translation of Jigme Lingpa’s own commentary, as well as a more extensive commentary by his tulku (reincarnation), Jamyang Khyentse Özer, and the full and condensed liturgical arrangements. Dahl writes with the humility that character- izes the best translations, and with an eye to the right balance of accuracy and readability. The book makes a strong case for approaching the Buddhist path in a holistic way. In the Nyingma tradition, the complete Buddhist teachings are included in a series of nine “vehicles” beginning with the teachings of the sutras, and then moving on to the stages of tantric practice, before culminating in the ninth vehicle, Atiyoga or Dzogchen. Dahl writes that each of the nine vehicles is indispensable to the path: Students of the Nyingma teachings practice these various approaches as a unity. Lower vehicles are not dis- pensed with in favor of supposedly “higher” teachings, but rather inte- grated into a more refined and holistic approach to spiritual development. The holistic approach is also evident throughout Jigme Lingpa’s ngöndro text, which begins with poetic contemplations of the opportunities provided by a human Ratna Ling Retreat Center www.RatnaLing.com or call: 888-944-3777 Ratna Ling is situtated on 120 acres among the majestic redwoods of Northern California - offering a full schedule of retreats and workshops in Buddhist Studies, Skillful Means, Kum Nye (Tibetan Yoga) and much more. “The world will be balanced when we are balanced.” Tarthang Tulku www.dharmacrafts.com 800.794.9862 Buddhadharma readers please use keycode: BDA meditation cushions incense bells & gongs statues contemplative garden home furnishings jewelry & gifts DharmaCraf ts THE CATALOG OF MEDITATION SUPPLIES since 1979