Happy Chokhor Duchen

Chokhor is Tibetan for Wheel of Dharma. Teaching Dharma is known as turning the Wheel of Dharma. This day is a celebration of the anniversary of  Shakyamuni Buddha (the historical Buddha)  beginning to Turn of the Wheel of Dharma. It is on a different day each year on the Gregorian calender that is used in the west and in the business world because it is a solar callender and the Buddhist Holi days are marked by a lunar calender.

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Beliefs as Skillful Means

Beliefs as Skillful Means

This is posted on the Visionary Heart Alchemy Blog

When the nature of relative truth is understood it is easy to recognize the how beliefs function (or often dysfunction) as skillful means. What also must be understood is that they are often integral functional components of transformational systems that are required for practitioners of the systems at particular developmental stages. That is to say practitioners at particular developmental stages, who are trying to use the system, must internalize these integral functional components if the system is to function the way it was meant to.

This has several implications. First some of what people call techniques from a system may not work,  work the same way or create…(read more)

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Vajrayana Buddhism and the Two Truths: An Illustrative Example: part 3

This posted on the Visionary Heart Alchemy Blog

At the most exoteric level of understanding Karma is explained in way not very different from the Christian/Islamic idea of heaven and hell. Basically when you die you appear before Yama, the lord of death, and your good karma is weighed against your bad and the balance sheet indicates what kind of rebirth you will get. In the case of Buddhism there are Six Possible Major Realms you can go. Three are considered, more or less unfortunate and three, more or less fortunate. Each realm has sub realms and, in all, they form a continuum from extreme happiness to Extreme Suffering, Heaven to Hell. It should be noted that this does significantly deviate from the common Christian and Islamic conception…(read more)

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Vajrayana Buddhism and the Two Truths: An Illustrative Example: part 2

This is posted on the Visionary Heart Alchemy Blog

In the view of Vajrayana Buddhism, as well as the view of Mahayana Buddhism of which Vajrayana is a specialized example(more on this to come), There are inexpressible numbers of Buddhas (as well as of sentient beings), that is to say, innumerable realizers of Absoluter Truth. The historical Buddha, once known as the prince Siddhartha, called Shakyamuni, is only one physically incarnated one. It is one of specific significance in Buddhist cosmology but those specifics are not relevant to this discussion.

Shakyamuni Buddha is said to have given 80,000 different teachings. The ultimate point of each of these teachings is the same though this ultimate point is described differently in different teachings. Some are more direct and some are more circuitous then others. The reason for this is the Buddha recognized… (read more)

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Vajrayana Buddhism and the Two Truths: An Illustrative Example: part 1

This is posted on the Visionary Heart Alchemy Blog

Understanding the Principle of Two Truths can be difficult, especially in the context of spirituality. In this post I will look at Buddhism with an eye towards the functioning of the Principle of Two Truths. I have chosen Vajrayana Buddhism for two reasons. First, it is the system that I am most intimately familiar with. Second, because Buddhism in general and Vajrayana Buddhism in particular is, as far as I can tell, the most articulate in expressing the Principle of Two Truths among all the worlds spiritual traditions (as well as many other very important alchemical principles). It is very explicit in its discussion of it and is foundational to the whole system… (read more)

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