Alchemical methods of non-dual realization: Contemplation, meditation, subtle yogas. ….
The Sufis say “You can not attain enlightenment by following the path but only those who follow the path attain enlightenment.” This is very true. The spiritual path does not create something new, or take you somewhere you have never been, rather it removes the veils which prevent a direct living gnosis of how things are in their reality.
An authentic spiritual path is not simply a grab bag of bits and pieces appropriated from other cultures mixed together like mashed potatoes. Nor is it a fantasy made up according to ego’s whims and fantasies. There is an actual structure to confused consciousness, there is a structure to how enlightened vision is veiled in consciousness. Knowing how this obscuration is embodied and enworlded in everyday actions one can understand the path of unveiling and revealing the always already enlightened reality of Buddha Nature. The true spiritual path is a science of human transformation and like any science its hypotheses have been tested in the laboratory of human life across centuries and cultures. Differing forms and flavors of the path have evolved to meet the needs of different cultures and times but the basic structures and aims remain the same.
The system practiced at Tsogyelgar is the ancient method of Buddhist Tantra and Dzogchen. For millennia yogis have mapped the subtle system of human consciousness and the pathways of the illusive yogic body. We practice the path of Vajrayana in its pure and exquisite beauty. As a person born and raised in the United States and having accomplished every phase of the path t.k. is able to make the methods, explanations and stages perfectly clear and practicable in accord with the needs of beings in this time and culture.
At Tsogyelgar we practice the system of Vajrayana, Tantra and Dzogchen, as originated by the Indian siddha Guru Rinpoche Padmasambhava in the 8th century. This path is comprised of View, Method and Action. View entails a vision of the entire path, the nature of divine reality. View also explains the what, how and why of Tantra’s subtle and powerful deity yoga and yoga of the subtle body. Method encompasses a broad range of meditational, alchemical, yogic and contemplative practices which realize the View. Realize means to make real as lived experience. Action enhances realization through enactment of the wisdom bliss which is realized through Method.
Our lineage of Tantric practices emphasizes the inner yogic skills as a method for fusing the intensity of wisdom and the extensity of bliss into ever more subtle organs of knowledge capable of directly perceiving the nature, and understanding the essence of, enlightened mind. The stages of the path run as follows.
Foundational Considerations: the pre-preliminaries considered in a unique alchemical fashion which transforms intellectual propositions into existentially transformative forces.
Preliminary Tantric Practices: “Ngondro” often called The Preliminaries because they are meditations and contemplation that forge body, emotion and mind into a functional whole strong enough to hold the powerful energies of Tantric initiation and practice.
Generation Phase: removes the gross obscuration which prevents mind from directly perceiving the sacred divine nature of all appearance. This phase uses meditation with Tantric deities, symbolic direct presentations, acting as alchemical triggers, of the unutterable wisdom bliss of reality.
Completion Phase: includes the well known Six Yogas such as Dream Yoga, Tummo or Inner Heat yoga, Illusory Body Yoga, Karmamudra or Sexual Yoga, the Yoga of Deep Sleep and others. These meditations culminate in a profound wisdom bliss known as the 4th Joy which opens the doorway to success in the practices of Dzogchen.
Great Completion: also known as Dzogchen is comprised of two phases, Trakchod and Tögal, which sever the root of duality and establish one in the state of non-dual wisdom awareness. This is Buddhahood.