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Milarepa - Red Rock Jewel Valley - Unchecked

DISCLAIMER - This transcript has not been checked, and may contain mistakes and mishearings.

by Sangharakshita

... lost, I must give up everything, so he walked out of his palace, wandered off into the
forest and became a monk. This is the story. Just that one grey hair and he saw old age
disease and death all worldly possessions in that one grey hair. So in the same way, Milarepa
saw all worldly possessions fluttering from the tree in that one shred of clothing, all about to
be blown away. So 'Therefore, a strong feeling of renunciation overwhelms him and sitting
down upon a rock he meditates once more.
So what happens next
"Soon a cluster of white clouds rose from Dro Wo Walley far away to the East.
'Below this band of clouds lies the temple of my Guru, the great Translator Marpa', mused
Milarepa, 'At this very moment Ne and His wife must be preaching the doctrines of Tantra,
giving initiation~and instruction to my brothers. Yes my Guru is there. If I could go there
now, I should be able to see Him.' An immeasurable, unbearable longing for his teacher arose
in his heart as he thought despairingly of his Guru. His eyes filled with tears, and he began to
sing a song, 'Thoughts of my Guru.'
Let's look at that paragraph first.
So Milarepa was meditating sitting upon a rock. 'Soon a cluster of white clouds arose
from Dro We Valley far away to the East.' What sort of suggestion do we get here, a cluster
of white clouds rising from far away to the East shortly after Milarepa started meditating..
He must be very high up somewhere.
S: He must be very h-igh up soiuewhere, also there is almost a suggestion as though the
cluster of white clouds has something to do with the' meditation. Doesn't it strike you like
that? 'Sitting down upon a rock he meditated once more. Soon a cluster of-' white clouds
rose from Dro We Valley far away to the east.' There does seem to be a subtle suggestion,
something is happening as a result of the meditation. Maybe there was a cluster of white
clouds rising, maybe it is a sort of vision. But he thinks, 'Below this bank of clouds lies the
temple of my Guru, the Great Translator Marpa,' mused Milarepa. 'At this very moment fle
and His wife will be preaching the doctrines of Tantra, giving initiation and instruction to my
brothers. Yes my Guru is there. If I could go therenow I would be able to see him.'
'Giving initiation and instruction to my brothers.' What does he mean by brothers?
________ The other disciples.
S: The other disciples. They are often called Vajra Brothers. That is to say fellow disciples,
not in the ordinary general sort of way, but fellow disciples on the account of the fact you
have all received Tantr C initiation from the same teacher. The same Vajra Carya, the same
Tantric Guru. So they are known as your Vajra Brothers. Your brothers in Tantric initiation.
It's considered especially serious if you quarrel with a vajra brother, that is much worse than
quarrelling with anybody else.
Padmapani; Why is that?
Why do you think that is? Why should it be worse to quarrel with someone who has
taken an initiation, the same kind of initiation as you have yourself?
Padmara~a; Because you should be relating through that same ideal.
S: Yes, you ~hou1d be relating through that same ideal. You are Vajra brothers, so you are
brothers by virtue of that common T~~ntric initiation. So you have that common element but
instead of relating through that you are not relating at all, but relating only negativel So what
effect will that have?
Sagaramati; It will bring that ideal down.
S: It will bring that ideal down. So what does that mean?
Padmapani; Your inspiratic~n will be lost.
S: Your inspiration will be lost, it will detract from your own practice. Because of the
common element within you and within him there is a common initiation and a common
commitment. So if you quarrel with him, you quarrel with him which includes his
commitment. If you quarrel with his-commitment you quarrel with your own commitment
because you have the same commitment in common. (Pause) So if you quarrel with
someone who is following the same spiritual path as yourself, some one who has made the
same commitment or who has the same initiation, who has the same teacher, that is quite a
serious matter because it undermines your whole spiritual practice and whole spiritual life.
Therefore traditionally this sort of thing is taken very very seriously indeed. Not only in the
Vajrayana but also in the other yanas. But it is taken very seriously in the Vajrayana, in as
much as at least in principle that is a higher yana. The Tantric initiation is more significant
let us say than other initiations and ordinations. Therefore to quarrel with a Vajra brother
becomes a very serious matter indeed. And similarly on thepositive side the relationship with
the Vajra vrother is at least potentially closer than that with somebody who is not a vajra
How do you feel about this in general. Does it correspond to one's general
experience; that you have a closer relationship with those who are committed as you are
committed or do you find sometimesit is not so?
It is almost as though the. whole commitment can start up almost like a
process. You can tend to rub up sometimes with similar people who have taken the same
Sagaramati; Everyone's got their own ideas about their commitment and I find that is where
the trouble lies. When someone ~~as no idea of how you feel about it you have no idea of
how the other person feels about it and you can break down in~cdmmunication.
S: Yes or sometimes you can have a miscommunication in the first place. Otherwise one
would not be in the dark about what another person feels about their own commitment and
what your common commitment means.
Sagaramati; Perhaps it could be (just the approach) Again differences in temperament. There
are quite a few quarrels and they seem to fall into that sort of sphere.
S: I have been wondering recently quite a bit about this whole que,stion of temperament. I
have referred recently to the organised and the unorganised. Rece~tly I was reading a little bit
of Jung. It struck me perhaps that the organised are the extroverts and those who are not
organised or resist being organised are the introv-erts. Addording to Jung the difference
between these two characteristic types is quite profound. He emphasised that introversion
and extroversion are only mechanisms and that you become an introvert or extrovert type
only when you have repeated recourse to one mechanism rather than the other, so that that
particular mechanism determines 'your character formation but the end product does seem to
be people of very different ways in many respects, in that they are introvert or extrovert.
There must be quite a bit of rnutuaT?u5nderstanding and miscomprehension between them.
So I think one has to pay some attention to differences of this sort. The person with whom
one has a mis understanding may simply be of different temperament, and character type from
you. Jung goes into some detail about this, for instance he says an introvert thinking type can
get very much bound up with his own thoughts about things and get more and more remote
from actual facts. Actual facts do not interest him. Very often he starts his thinking from his
own feelings and his own feelings, his n ideas even are his raw material. He also makes the
point and gives some quite interesting examples That introverted thinking types make very
bad teachers. It is the extrovert thinking type who make good teachers. The introverted
thinking type is too interested in his own ideas. He will get absorbed in the material for its
own sake and develop his own interest in it, regardless of the needs 6f the people he is
supposed to be teaching. For instance he gives the example or quite a famous chemist (and
he quotes from his biography) his students ask him a question, and they rarely get an answer.
The question would spark off all sorts of trains of thought in his own mind, he would get very
involved in these and forget all about the students question, he said, 'I'll let you know-next
week, I'll let you know next week!' But the student was waiting to get on with his work,
waiting to ~et on with his experiments but the professor would go away and work it all out
and then send the student a long and learned note, very abstruse, very difficult, which had no
bearing on the original question - merely sparked off by the question and was completely
useless to the student. Because the professor was an intr~verted thinking type. So Jung
makes this interesting and relevant point that introverted thinking types do not make good
teachers. It is the extroverted thinking type that makes a good teacher. He is aware of the
Student, aware of the students' needs, knows why the student is asking the question. He is
aware that the student needs at least a provisional answer so that he can get on with his own
work. So the extrovert thinking type as a teacher will not lose himself in his own reflections
which may well be sparked off by the student's question. He remains related objectively tQ
the student's actual needs. So this seems to be the sort of point that we can take note of.
________ Glancing back through my school days it seems to me that it was the extroverted
based teachers who provided the. not entertainment but who put the ...

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