Saturday, January 28, 2006

Mahamudra

Mahamudra is the Tibetan Buddhist practice of direct insight meditation, consisting of shamatha (calm abiding) and vipassana (special insight). As I understand it, one first works to calm the mind by shamatha, making it more stable and increasing the space between thoughts. Once calm abiding is achieved, vipassana is practiced to detach the meditator from identifying with her thoughts, feelings and actions, so that the pure, clear nature of the mind can be perceived.

The Third Karmapa, Rangjung Dorje, wrote a wonderful Aspirational Prayer for Mahamudra. Here's the text, with robust commentary by Venerable Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche.

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