FreeSangha - Buddhist Forum

Schools of Buddhism => Mahayana => New Kadampa => Topic started by: Ocean_of_Bliss on February 19, 2012, 08:22:40 pm

Title: Dispelling the fog on the path to the Spiritual Guide
Post by: Ocean_of_Bliss on February 19, 2012, 08:22:40 pm

Dispelling the fog on the path to the spiritual guide

Hi everyone, this is my first post here (in the entire forum I mean). First of all I want to say that I’m glad that the New Kadampa Tradition was not dicriminated in a buddhist forum besides any consideration about the matter of DS and the struggle between HH Dalai Lama and Geshe Kelsang Gyatso. I respect both high masters of their Lineage as any buddhist should respect any other human being because that is a must considering that Compassion is one of the very essencial points in Buddha’s teachings. Really I’m happy for that because the best teacher is the example.
Well first of all I have to say that I’m likely new to Buddhism because my first encounter with Dharma happened just two years ago and I’ve been just in touch with it, specially trying to look for a school or tradition where to develop in the path of wisdom and compassion and it is not so easy because there are just few options available here in Argentina, specially in Cordoba, the province where I live.
But the reason why I’m posting this topic here is because I’ve met a Dharma center of the NKT that is new here in Cordoba and I felt interested in joining this sangha but I had a couple of doubts that weren’t cleared appropiately by the resident teacher, so as I’ve seen that there are a couple of members here in this forum, maybe those who know something about this, could answer my questions.
Well my doubts concern about the spiritual guide (as the title of my post says). I feel that the matter of the spiritual guide is quite not clear within the NKT. When I asked about who would be my spiritual guide in the tradition, then noone had a clear answer for that, so I suggested a couple of situations to help me to understand it better.
For example, if I take part into an “Offering to the Spiritual Guide” puja but I have received not any transmission from someone in whom I can rely as my Guru, so who could I consider it to be? I thought that maybe I could consider GKG as the “general” Spiritual Guide until I choose one of the senior teachers of the NKT as my Guru.
But considering that point (and having taken a lot of time to read from the beggining to the end the topic about Tantric Masters qualifications in the NKT) I make a supposition, at least for me, that a person that I would chose as my Guru should be able to transmit me all the teachings of his or her lineage. Am I right in my supposition? Is it really neccesary?
Specially because it becomes confusing when thinking of all the teachers the NKT have, but you have not received a direct transmission from GKG, specially on Guru Yoga that is the most essential teaching and practice that links a disciple with his or her Guru. I mean, if you have received that transmission from GKG so it doesn’t matter if you receive any teaching from any other of his disciples because you can consider them as emanations from him, as both (you and the teacher) are linked to the same Guru. But if that’s not the case - and it will be THE CASE for the new generation students, as possibly it could be me – so it’s not clear that it should be the same. For example if I rely on Kelsang Dekyong as my Guru (considering maybe that I could take in the future a HYT empowerment with her), how will I consider other teachers if I receive a Lower Tantra empowerment from anyone else? I mean because the other teachers at the moment have been trained by GKG and not by her.
And what if I choose as my Spiritual Guide someone who cannot give a HYT empowerment and then I receive it from KD... who will be the Spiritual Guide?
I consider that Highest Yoga Tantra is an important point of the question as it is the highest of Buddha’s teachings, the fastest way to attain enlightment (in general, maybe not for every person) and the heart and the root of a vajrayana tradition (Even if NKT defines itself as Mahayana but it is Vajrayana if they practice Tantra) something that distinguishes it of other paths on Buddhism.
I really need to understand this because on other schools it is easier. For example I have met some people of the Dzogchen Community leaded by Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche and they have not that problem, the guru is only one and you receive transmissions only from him (you could receive teachings from other people but he is the only one who grants transmissions).
Well I hope someone can answer and bring me some light into this matter.
Thanks for your time and attention.

Dechen.
Title: Re: Dispelling the fog on the path to the Spiritual Guide
Post by: Ocean_of_Bliss on February 19, 2012, 08:29:02 pm
And I have another question. Why does NKT only emphasize the Heruka HYT and not Yamantaka or Guhyasamaja?
Title: Re: Dispelling the fog on the path to the Spiritual Guide
Post by: Caz on February 20, 2012, 11:17:38 am
Hi Dechen

In general if someone doesnt have a person they can point to directly as their spiritual guide one relies upon Je Tsongkhapa and in order to benefit from teachings one views the person they recieve teachings from as inseperable from Je Tsongkhapa. When one takes a HYT empowerment that person is regarded as your principal spiritual guide if one has had action Tantra empowerments from other teachers one can also regard them as inseperable from Je Tsongkhapa and ones spiritual guide(if you have one) , Its fairly simple. :)

During a " Offering to the Spiritual Guide" Puja ones spiritual guide is regarded in the form of Lama Losang Tubwang Dorjechang and again it doesnt matter wether this is Geshe-la, Gen-la Dekyong or whoever. Develop faith in Je Tsongkhapa first and a spiritual guide will naturally appear. All spiritual guides are viewed in the form of Je Tsongkhapa.

The NKT only does Heruka and Vajrayogini tantra's over Guhysamja and Yamantaka because these Tantra's become more powerful in degenerate times and are easier to gain accomplishments from the longer the lineages become.
Title: Re: Dispelling the fog on the path to the Spiritual Guide
Post by: Ocean_of_Bliss on February 20, 2012, 12:14:26 pm
Well thank you Cass for your answers, they have helped me to understand more about this matter of the Spiritual Guide. You are right specially in one thing, the best is to develop great faith in Je Tsongkhapa first of all.
Thanks again,

Dechen
Title: Re: Dispelling the fog on the path to the Spiritual Guide
Post by: Caz on February 20, 2012, 12:18:57 pm
No worries Dechen.

If you develop faith in Je Tsongkhapa he will manifest as an appropriate teacher. :pray:
Title: Re: Dispelling the fog on the path to the Spiritual Guide
Post by: Tsongkhapafan on February 21, 2012, 05:30:51 am
Good response Caz, well done! 

I rejoice.

:pray:
Title: Re: Dispelling the fog on the path to the Spiritual Guide
Post by: Yeshe on February 21, 2012, 12:41:10 pm
Good response Caz, well done! 

I rejoice.

:pray:

Yes, Caz certainly knows his 'onions'.  :)
Title: Re: Dispelling the fog on the path to the Spiritual Guide
Post by: jedi78 on August 24, 2013, 12:53:57 am
Thanks for the information
Title: Re: Dispelling the fog on the path to the Spiritual Guide
Post by: hanuman38 on November 05, 2014, 09:46:45 am
Good response Caz, well done! 

I rejoice.

:pray:

Yes, Caz certainly knows his 'onions'.  :)

Ha, it took me quite a while to get that one.   :wink1:
Title: Re: Dispelling the fog on the path to the Spiritual Guide
Post by: AlexSpellman on November 26, 2014, 05:46:43 am
Just come across this as I was reading through the board.

Since meeting Dharma I've always been with the NKT but (and I'm not sure why) I have a problem relying on Je Tsongkhapa and Dorje Shugden.  I have tried to complete Heart Jewel (the shortest version?) but I really have difficulty.

Will this be a big problem, I find relying on Tara and doing the Tara Puja much easier and better but when I spoke to some people in the NKT they have that sort of "well, you really need to do Heart Jewel and rely on Je Tsongkhapa."

I have just had a Tsongkhapa empowerment and am very much hoping I'll be able to do the Tara empowerment very soon.

Am I doomed?  Does this even make sense?

Thank you!
Title: Re: Dispelling the fog on the path to the Spiritual Guide
Post by: Caz on November 27, 2014, 04:52:54 am
Just come across this as I was reading through the board.

Since meeting Dharma I've always been with the NKT but (and I'm not sure why) I have a problem relying on Je Tsongkhapa and Dorje Shugden.  I have tried to complete Heart Jewel (the shortest version?) but I really have difficulty.

Will this be a big problem, I find relying on Tara and doing the Tara Puja much easier and better but when I spoke to some people in the NKT they have that sort of "well, you really need to do Heart Jewel and rely on Je Tsongkhapa."

I have just had a Tsongkhapa empowerment and am very much hoping I'll be able to do the Tara empowerment very soon.

Am I doomed?  Does this even make sense?

Thank you!

Tara is one of the Kadam Guru Deities of our tradition many practitioners have a very strong connection with her. she is the same nature as Je Tsongkhapa & Dorje Shugden just appearing in a different aspect.

Kadampa practitoners should make the effort to make Heart Jewel their daily practice even if they find it difficult to begin with at first, It was recommended to me that even if I find it difficult keep going, practice developing faith in Je Tsongkhapa & Dorje Shugden and the easiest way to do that is to remember they are inseparable from your favored deity.

Try it, when calling Je Tsongkhapa from Tushita heaven in Heart jewel see all deities, Buddha's, Bodhisattva's, Yidams and especially Tara Dissolve into Je Tsongkhapa.

Title: Re: Dispelling the fog on the path to the Spiritual Guide
Post by: hanuman38 on December 28, 2014, 09:42:12 am
Excellent advice.

Just to weigh in - I have been attending a Kadampa center for about 1 1/2 years; any day I'm not at the center I will pray and meditate at home.  I don't do Heart Jewel every day; when pressed for time I often do Prayers for Meditation instead, since it's a bit shorter.  On the other hand, I often do walking meditation throughout the day, using a mala and repeating prayers and mantras.  Dorje Shuden's and Arya Tara's are among the ones I use most frequently.

I actually did approach Dorje Shugden through Lama Tsonghkapa originally; the first thing that happened was I would catch myself humming or singing the Migtsema prayer throughout the day.  IMO since we all have different karma, our relationship to the various Buddhas and Boddhisattvas will be different.  But they can all be trusted to help and guide us according to our needs; that's just their nature.

Currently I consider Geshe Kelsang my root Guru/Spiritual Guide... with a major assist from our Resident Teacher, who is truly excellent. 
SimplePortal 2.3.3 © 2008-2010, SimplePortal