Help us to establish Drala Jong - a Buddhist Retreat Centre in Wales

Help us to establish Drala Jong - a Buddhist Retreat Centre in Wales
Help us to establish Drala Jong - a Buddhist Retreat Centre in Wales

Monday, 2 August 2021

The fist that lands on your nose

Tantra is very complex. But; it is also absolutely simple – incredibly straightforward; totally direct. It is not just a matter of its being as apparent as the nose on your face – it is more a case of its being as immediately obvious as the fist that lands on your nose. At some level, you cannot pretend that it’s not happening. 


p4, Wearing the Body of Visions, Ngakpa Chögyam, Aro Books, 1995, ISBN 1-898185-03-4  

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Monday, 26 July 2021

The dance

We are the dance of existence and non-existence.  Unless we know this – Tantra is impossible.  But whether we understand it or not – Tantra is continually performing itself; it is what is happening.  But this is somewhat poetic.  What can such extraordinary statements mean?

p4, Wearing the Body of Visions, Ngakpa Chögyam, Aro Books, 1995, ISBN 1-898185-03-4  

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Monday, 19 July 2021

Far too tightly clenched

The unrestricted energy that is Tantra is always within our reach; but, we cannot touch it – because our hands are often too tightly clenched. There seems to be something we’re hanging onto rather desperately – something we’re afraid we might lose if we slackened our grip.

 p5, Wearing the Body of Visions, Ngakpa Chögyam, Aro Books, 1995, ISBN 1-898185-03-4  

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Monday, 12 July 2021

The freedom to experience

Shock Amazement

When allowing the emotional realm to be as it is, the freedom to experience the texture of life arises directly – and it becomes possible to sidestep the sour orthodoxy of preordained likes, dislikes, and habitual concepts.  Allowing perceptual life to be as it is, everything is self-liberated as it is – resulting in freedom from restrictive social rôles, conventional preoccupations, conservative anxieties, and mundane personal expectations.

p12, Shock AmazementThe four naljors and four ting-ngé’dzin from the Dzogchen series of the nature of Mind.   Khandro Déchen and Ngakpa Chögyam,  Aro Books Worldwide, 2018, ISBN 978-1-898185-45-1 

Monday, 5 July 2021

You can feel with your mind and think with your nose

What is it like to look at a mountain, or a cherry?  What is it like to hear bird-song?  What is it like to feel velvet?  Is this a one-way process – or is this, in some inexpressible way, a communication?  You see, the intellect is a sense field.  You don't have to understand everything through that one sense field.  The fundamental genius of Tantra is that the sense fields are interconnected.  You can feel with your mind and think with your nose.  

 p216, Spectrum of Ecstasy, Ngakpa Chögyam with Khandro Déchen, Aro Books, 1997, ISBN 0-9653948-0-8

Monday, 28 June 2021

A certain degree of chutzpah

A tantrika requires a certain degree of chutzpah.  But that’s not to say that Tantra can’t help you short-circuit insecurity, fear, loneliness, anxiety, and depression.  This may sound like a complete contradiction – but there is an escape clause: devotion.  You can short-circuit all your neurotic sensitivities if you have complete confidence in the practice.  But you can never let that slip.

 p215, Spectrum of Ecstasy, Ngakpa Chögyam with Khandro Déchen, Aro Books, 1997, ISBN 0-9653948-0-8

Monday, 21 June 2021

Each Mind-moment

Ecstatic appreciation of every moment of experience is simply what happens when we give up on our attempts to create reality according to the banal dictates of security.  When I say that “the texture of whatever happens is, in itself, the implicit meaning of every Mind-moment”, there is the sense in which each Mind-moment is, in it’s nakedness, the state of enlightenment.

p209, Spectrum of Ecstasy, Ngakpa Chögyam with Khandro Déchen, Aro Books, 1997, ISBN 0-9653948-0-8

Monday, 14 June 2021

The sexual dimension of being

Tantrikas remain always in ecstatic embrace with the khandro or pawo.  Tantrikas refrain from subverting the sexual dimension of their being in the attempt to avoid authentic relationship with the khandro or pawo.  They avoid obfuscating the inner pawo or inner khandro by objectifying women or men according to sexually distorted or degraded stereotypes.

Aro Encyclopaedia Index: From the commentaries by Ngak’chang Rinpoche and Khandro Déchen on the ’ug-Kyi Lab-Nga – the five Owl Precepts from the gTérmas of Khyungchen Aro Lingma.

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Drala Jong

Monday, 7 June 2021

Freeloading as a way of life

Tantrikas avoid taking anything that is not freely offered.  They avoid freeloading as a way of life.  They do not leave others to carry out work which they have been allotted.  They do not avoid work and allow others to carry a greater share than would have been theirs if appropriate assistance had been forthcoming. They do not fail to volunteer when help is needed.  They abstain from asking excessive favours of others, or expecting to be ‘carried’ in life.  They avoid abusing hospitality or taking advantage of the time and generosity of others.  They do not steal the time of other practitioners by the refusal to be real, or by engaging in the adoption of an ‘artificial buddhist personality.

Aro Encyclopaedia Index: From the commentaries by Ngak’chang Rinpoche and Khandro Déchen on the ’ug-Kyi Lab-Nga – the five Owl Precepts from the gTérmas of Khyungchen Aro Lingma.

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Drala Jong

Monday, 31 May 2021

Depriving others as little as possible

Tantrikas refrain from stealing opportunities for realisation and squandering the proceeds on the creation of less obvious dualities. Tantrikas are aware that they cannot extricate themselves from involvement in exploitation, social injustice, oppression, and theft. They recognise the impossibility of disconnection from causes of loss, impoverishment, and deprivation for other beings. Through this knowledge they commit to depriving others as little as possible through their presence in the world.  They recognise that simply to live is to have gained personal advantage through the disadvantage of countless others.

Aro Encyclopaedia Index: From the commentaries by Ngak’chang Rinpoche and Khandro Déchen on the ’ug-Kyi Lab-Nga – the five Owl Precepts from the gTérmas of Khyungchen Aro Lingma.

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Drala Jong

Monday, 24 May 2021

Whatever we eat, drink, or wear

Tantrikas attempt to commit themselves to experiencing bodhicitta at every opportunity, in order to create connections with whatever they eat, drink, or wear.  They commit themselves to a non-aggressive way of life. Whether their style of taking sustenance is carnivorous, vegetarian, vegan, or fruitarian; they commit themselves to refraining from aggression by way of act, word, or attitude to those who derive sustenance according to contrasting considerations.  Each style of deriving nourishment is linked with a form of expressing chang-chub sem (byang chub sems – bodhicitta) active-compassion according to the different vehicles, and so they commit themselves to adopting whatever style accords with the integrity of their perception as tantrikas.

Aro Encyclopaedia Index: From the commentaries by Ngak’chang Rinpoche and Khandro Déchen on the ’ug-Kyi Lab-Nga – the five Owl Precepts from the gTérmas of Khyungchen Aro Lingma.

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Drala Jong

Monday, 17 May 2021

It is impossible to disconnect from killing

Tantrikas refrain from killing the efflorescence of rigpa as it sparkles through the fabric of duality. Tantrikas realise that to refrain from killing the efflorescence of their enlightened nature is simultaneously possible and impossible. It is possible, because they are enlightened from beginninglessness; but it is impossible because they may lack confidence in the non-dual state. Because of this ambivalence, they develop confidence in the non-dual state through sustaining awareness of the pain caused by killing in all its manifestations. Their understanding of this is always present.

Aro Encyclopaedia Index: From the commentaries by Ngak’chang Rinpoche and Khandro Déchen on the ’ug-Kyi Lab-Nga – the five Owl Precepts from the gTérmas of Khyungchen Aro Lingma.

#dralajongquote

Drala Jong

Monday, 10 May 2021

Being natural

Aro Encyclopaedia
Being natural is not ‘natural’ to those committed to the illusion of duality, and therefore some encouragement is needed in terms of inspiring tantrikas to enter into the felt meaning of the view.  The Owl Precepts exist therefore, as five aspects of essential life-advice which are applied by the tantrika in terms of mere indication. This method exists in terms of guidelines which undermine the complex contrivances of attempting to maintain dualism.  They are invaluable teaching in terms of evolution on the spiritual path.

Aro Encyclopaedia Index: From the commentaries by Ngak’chang Rinpoche and Khandro Déchen on the ’ug-Kyi Lab-Nga – the five Owl Precepts from the gTérmas of Khyungchen Aro Lingma.

#dralajongquote

Drala Jong

Monday, 3 May 2021

How we feel

If you allow yourself to get caught up in the idea that your pain has been caused by somebody else, you may feel you have to throw a tantrum.  People get into some terrible difficulties over this, and act in ways that only make their situation worse.  Rejecting responsibility for feeling as we do spawns jealousy, bitterness, resentment, recrimination and vengefulness.  Rejecting responsibility for how we feel has never created the causes for pleasure, enjoyment or emotional fulfilment. 

p91, Spectrum of Ecstasy, Ngakpa Chögyam with Khandro Déchen, Aro Books, 1997, ISBN 0-9653948-0-8 

Monday, 26 April 2021

The style of our responses

We cannot be responsible for many things.  But we are all responsible for how we feel about the things that happen to us.  To embrace our emotions as the path, we must take responsibility for the style of our responses.    

p91, Spectrum of Ecstasy, Ngakpa Chögyam with Khandro Déchen, Aro Books, 1997, ISBN 0-9653948-0-8

Monday, 19 April 2021

Our own responsibility

The development of clarity arises from our growing awareness of the natural spaciousness of being.  With growing clarity, the life problems that occur cease to manifest so painfully.  We no longer add to their intensity as an automatic reflex.  Ultimately, our lives are our own responsibility.  Our problems are for us to work through.  There is no use in blaming the state of our lives on anybody else.  

p90, Spectrum of Ecstasy, Ngakpa Chögyam with Khandro Déchen, Aro Books, 1997, ISBN 0-9653948-0-8

Monday, 12 April 2021

All our plans and efforts

With the discovery of experiential space we can let go of the emotional investment we put into all our plans and efforts.  Things actually become easier when we allow ourselves to play with our situation, rather than having to take it totally seriously.  The lightness of this approach is a manifestation of our developing clarity.

p90, Spectrum of Ecstasy, Ngakpa Chögyam with Khandro Déchen, Aro Books, 1997, ISBN 0-9653948-0-8

Monday, 5 April 2021

Fertile field of learning

Unless we embrace the monastic life, we have to work with the richness of the dualistic condition in all its complexity: monochromatic boredom and technicolour excitement; joy and sorrow; decisions and dilemmas; set-backs and exultations; misfortunes and rewards.  It is a fantastically fertile field of learning but we have to find the experiential space in which we can pursue plans very lightly; and, with a pronounced sense of humour.  

p89-90, Spectrum of Ecstasy, Ngakpa Chögyam with Khandro Déchen, Aro Books, 1997, ISBN 0-9653948-0-8 

Monday, 29 March 2021

A ‘dangerous’ game

Creating conducive circumstances, for ourselves and others, involves planning and making efforts which in many respects is a ‘dangerous’ game.  Plans can be made and plans can fall apart, but that is no reason not to make plans.  The failure and success of plans simply gives us an opportunity to experience failure and success as the ornaments of equanimity.  If we have some sense of space, this is a distinct possibility.  

p89, Spectrum of Ecstasy, Ngakpa Chögyam with Khandro Déchen, Aro Books, 1997, ISBN 0-9653948-0-8

Monday, 22 March 2021

Intrinsic to human beings

Knowledge of Vajrayana is intrinsic to human beings – not in the sense of complex symbolism and elaborate colourful mystical motifs, but in the sense that Vajrayana is our condition.  Vajrayana is our condition, in the sense that Vajrayana is the thread of continuity which runs through every aspect of what we are.  In this sense Vajrayana may be invisible – but it is also sharply and poignantly perceptible.  The Lama shows us this reality.

p68, Entering the Heart of the Sun and Moon Ngakpa Chögyam and Khandro Déchen,  Aro Books, 2009, ISBN 978-0-9653948-3-3