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Simona

Dissolving of 5 elements

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In the Buddhism it is considered that 5 elements (earth, water, fire, air and space) are the substance of all things and processes. Body is made of them on the gross level and consciousness on the subtle level. In the time of death all these 5 elements dissolve one by one starting from the gross level to the subtle. We know what remains from the body. Do we know what remains from the consciousness if there is nothing to be left of those 5 elements. Self-arising self-energy? If latest, how could be something composed if already exist? If not, then there could not be any self-arising self-energy.

 

Simona

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Tashi Delek,

 

Do we know what remains from the consciousness if there is nothing to be left of those 5 elements. Self-arising self-energy?

Nothing exist without cause. It is not "self-arising". After the dissolution of the gross elements of the consciousness, twe are going toward the most subtle aspect of it (Clear Light). Somehow afraid to "desappear", we cannot bear this Clear Light, and the inverse process starts, during which we the gross levels will appear again, on the basis of the karmic causes we have created.

 

All the best, Gelong T. Shenphen

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Guest Ani.Chödrön

Tashi Delek,

 

I know two approaches to 5 elements in the process of dying:

 

- seeing them as the five Dhyani Buddhas and recognizing them as the Wisdom Consciousness,

- seeing them as elements which dissolve into the most subtle consciousness of ours.

In both cases you reach the same goal. -()-

 

We know what remains from the body. Do we know what remains from the consciousness

 

Mind and energy are not as separated as we are usually used to think. We can see the same principles of the 5 elements in our bodies, in our mind and all our surrounding. From this point of view they don’t disappear: only the grosser levels dissolve, the principles remain. According to Kalu Rinpoche, five elements in relation to mind mean: emptiness (space), radiance (fire), dynamic quality (wind), continuity (water), and foundation for any experience (earth). l-) More: Kalu Rinpoche: The Six Bardos and Five Elements, teaching in NY 1982, http://www.iol.ie/~taeger/bardotea/bardotea.html.

 

Body is made of them on the gross level and consciousness on the subtle level.

 

Yes, in one way. But we can also say that both winds (energies) and mind that sustain our body during life exist on three levels: gross, subtle and very subtle. Gross mind, for example, is connected to the sense consciousness; <|:) subtle mind to more subtle levels of consciousness l-) and the very subtle mind is the fundamental nature of our mind, the Buddha Nature, which is experienced during the meditation of Clear Light. -()-

 

The very subtle mind and the very subtle wind are “stored” in so called indestructible drop in our heart chakra, which is the only “thing” that remains after the dissolution of the elements, (gross and subtle) winds and (gross and subtle) mind during the process of dying. The indestructible drop carries all the karmic imprints (or karmic potentials) to the next life. On this basis a new life begins in a reverse process as death: subtler levels first, grosser levels last.

 

Self-arising self-energy?

 

The process is based on karmic seeds which ripen and give results. And on the basic principles how mind and energies function. The link between these two makes Enlightenment possible. As Kalu Rinpoche said: »Liberation arises at the moment in the after-death state when consciousness can realize its experiences to be nothing other than mind itself.« !:!

 

Best regards,

chödrön

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Tashi Delek, Lama Shenphen Rinpoche.

 

Tashi Delek, Ani.Ch?dr?n.

 

Thank you very much for your answers. I`m being amazed by the picture you gave it. Not because it would be right or false from the logical point of view. Yet, it is so alive as it would be experienced by fully awareness.

 

Take care because there is a lot of sentient beings who needs you, Dharma and Sangha.

 

Simona

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Tashi Delek.

 

Somehow afraid to "desappear", we cannot bear this Clear Light, and the inverse process starts, during which we the gross levels will appear again, on the basis of the karmic causes we have created.

 

Is a fear of disappearance in the connection with the pain? The psychology says that each person has his own pain threshold, i. e. the pain would tend to increase to the certain degree and when the top of the pain would be achieved, there would be no possibility to increase the pain further, it won`t hurts even more till the endlessness. I think that such pain thresholds are creation of an ego in order to sustain itself. Cause I once approached to the pain, which was developed from the pleasure, that went beyond my pain threshold. And in that moment I felt like something would absorbed "me" (what ever that means), it was as a dissolving, a disappearing. Is it possible when being in such a state, to get any guidance? Cause I, as a human being tend to rely upon a guidance all the time, most of the time upon the guidance of my ego. Is it a true nature of the mind to give up, to surrender and only when to mind is being left to do its own work, to be what it is by its own nature, there is a possibility to achieve the Enlightenment?

 

Best regards,

 

Simona

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Guest Ani.Chödrön

Tashi Delek,

 

Is a fear of disappearance in the connection with the pain?

 

No, it’s beyond pleasure and pain – it’s a fear of dissolution of self. In the process of dying it appears after all the gross phenomenal world is dissolved and pain is not possible any more.

 

Is it possible when being in such a state, to get any guidance?

 

I am sure it is. :D And I guess that to be able to perceive guidance in more subtle states we also need quite some skill in meditation.

 

I would also say that more we are familiar with the Emptiness and Bodhicitta teachings, more we are able to see the interconnectivity and impermanence in our everyday lives, and this way our hopes and fears become less firm. This can give space for a deeper connection with the Guru, which remains even when the grosser concepts are seriously shaken. !:!

 

Is it a true nature of the mind to give up, to surrender and only when to mind is being left to do its own work, to be what it is by its own nature, there is a possibility to achieve the Enlightenment?

 

Yes, as the Diamond Sutra says, the idea of self and other is not very much in accordance with the Enlightenment. :wink:

 

All the best,

chödrön

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Tashi Delek.

 

No, it’s beyond pleasure and pain – it’s a fear of dissolution of self. In the process of dying it appears after all the gross phenomenal world is dissolved and pain is not possible any more.

 

Ani Ch?dr?n, thank you very much for your answer. :) I like it.

I would like to become clear about the pain. I assume (might be wrong) that the pain is a state of the mind and not the state of the body. Which is, no body is needed urgently to feel the pain after all and the pain could sustain or even appear after all the gross phenomenal elements of the body are dissolved. Same maybe with the fear, which is presented when encountering the Clear Light. The fear is also the state of the mind, which is not urgently connected to the gross elements, i. e. to the body.

Could you please tell me, if I understand wrongly what everything is escorting the consciousness till the encounter with the Clear Light?

 

Best regards,

 

Simona

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Guest Ani.Chödrön

Tashi Delek,

 

Could you please tell me, if I understand wrongly what everything is escorting the consciousness till the encounter with the Clear Light?

 

In the process of dying first the four elements dissolve (earth, water, fire and air). The corresponding senses (the senses and perceptions of seeing, hearing, smelling tasting and touching, as well as will, duty, gross thoughts etc.) do not have support any more and cease to produce experiences. This is the first phase, concluding with what western medicine calls death.

 

In the second phase three visions appear (see encyclopaedia), while the subtle levels of our body and mind start to dissolve. At the end of the black near obtainment the gross and subtle energies and states of mind are dissolved. This is the dawn of the Clear Light of death.

 

It is possible to approach the Clear Light also during advanced meditation practices, but i don't know them. As far as I know, the process is rather similar (working with energies without real dissolution).

 

Best regards,

chödrön

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Tashi Delek.

 

Why would be important, in which state of mind someone find oneself in the time of dying? Whatever mind state would be, it ceases at some point in the process of dying anyway. With help of which sense one would perceive the six realms in the process of dying, one of them would be later drawn in? As I understand there are outer and inner objects of the perception. Is the way of perceiving and the senses, which perceive in both cases the same? Is there any difference, though?

 

 

Best regards,

 

Simona

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Guest Ani.Chödrön

Tashi Delek

 

Why would be important, in which state of mind someone find oneself in the time of dying?

 

As far as I understood, it gives our mind a direction, an inclination, so that when it comes out of the Clear Light it generates a new body on the basis of karmic imprints "stored" in the so called indestructible drop. You can see in your everyday life that intensive experiences that you have just gone through will most probably influence you stronger then the weaker ones from the past. The process of dying makes one extraordinary sensitive so it is very important to enable one as much peace as possible.

 

You might be interested that the knowledge about the importance of the last moments existed also in the European history: in a short slice of time (around the XV. Century) a belief appeared that the dying process is a kind of a battle between good and bad and that the standpoint of a dying person is decisive for the development of the events (:twisted: or o:) ). It was recommended to regret the sins and to rely on the Holy Trinity and the Mother Mary. They were printing illustrated manuals (Artes Moriendi) to spread this idea. So much importance was given to the last days that they tended to abandon ethical everyday life, which was ended by the reformation movements, but the belief in the importance of the moment of death remained until the XX. Century.

 

Of course our everyday life is important as well, as it offers a good foundation for the last days. How could we have strong faith, stable meditation and renounced attitude, if we hadn’t practiced before?

 

With help of which sense one would perceive the six realms in the process of dying, one of them would be later drawn in?

 

The subtle bardo body has similar senses as our body.

 

Is the way of perceiving and the senses, which perceive in both cases the same? Is there any difference, though?

 

As far as I remember, every phenomenon has three aspects: form, structure and function. Or, from another point of view: the perceiver, the perceived and the perception are of the same nature.

 

Best regards,

chödrön

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Tashi Delek.

 

Whatever body would it be, physical, dream or bardo (here I mean »bardo« in a restricted sense, i. e., although the bardo state is after all each aspect of the consciousness) they have got something in common, which are senses. Physical body perceives the physical world, dream body perceives the dream world, etc. Yet, the senses are kind of the same. In all the worlds one can see pictures, smell or feel cold and hot, feel pain and fear or peace and joy. Is there something like the hierarchy of different bodies, extended from the grosser to the most subtile and one can pass over between the bodies with the help of the senses. What it would mean, if one feels great pain on the physical level, or concentrate on one particular perception in the way one would become the sense itself (might I didn`t explain with the right words, but do pay attention on the »spirit« what is written, please) it would transcend, carry one into the more subtle body and so on. Cause the principles of the senses are the same on the all levels and might they are the master-key, which opens all the bodies. When one come to the Clear Light and if not run-away, does one then also get some kind of a »light body« and is there also something further levels one can transcend?

 

 

Best regards,

 

 

Simona

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Guest Ani.Chödrön

Tashi Delek,

 

I will open my mouth again although my level of understanding is very low and narrow, just because i am interested in this topic too. :lol:

 

it would transcend, carry one into the more subtle body

 

As far as i know one has to leave one body to acquire another. We cannot dwell in two bodies simultaneously. When we generate a dream body, the mind leaves the physical body, although it is closely connected to it (by the power of karmic bonds).

 

one can pass over between the bodies with the help of the senses

 

If I understood you right, what you described are different states of mind, not different bodies.

 

I wouldn’t count on my senses to lead me anywhere where I would aspire to go. :roll: I believe that meditation practices, under a good guidance, are the key to pass through different states of mind (and also different bodies in case of dream yoga). First by exact differentiation, then by real holding the reins. ://:wink:

 

When one come to the Clear Light and if not run-away, does one then also get some kind of a »light body« and is there also something further levels one can transcend?

 

Yes. <|:) If one meditates in the state of Clear Light, one can reach the state of Buddhahood and obtain the Three Holy Bodies (or four or five; more here).

 

All the very best,

chödrön

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Tashi Delek.

 

Is it possible to affirm that during the meditation one does not perceive anything, i. e. that during the meditation there is no perception? If there is a perception of coming and leaving thoughts or a perception of an object, then how it would a perception take a place if not through the senses?

 

Best regards,

 

Simona

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Tashi Delek,

 

according to the texts, there is obviously clear awareness beyond concepts, senses and any kind of duality. I guess there is no other way to discover it then to acquire enough skill in meditation to experience it directly. :wink:

 

Best regards,

chödrön

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Tashi Delek.

 

Does anyone know, if the skill in meditation and discovering the clear awareness is in any possible connection with the opening the 6.th chakra, i. e. the third eye (or Udjat from the ancient Egypt - the symbol of the wisdom, protector with the eternal tear of the compassion for all beings)? Does the clear awareness mean the clear seeing, seeing a big, i. e. a whole picture, then? What would be a precise definition of the awareness?

 

 

Best regards,

 

Simona

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Tashi Delek.

 

Does anyone know, if the skill in meditation and discovering the clear awareness is in any possible connection with the opening the 6.th chakra, i. e. the third eye (or Udjat from the ancient Egypt - the symbol of the wisdom, protector with the eternal tear of the compassion for all beings)? Does the clear awareness mean the clear seeing, seeing a big, i. e. a whole picture, then? What would be a precise definition of the awareness.

 

Hello everybody,

 

Well! That is a very interesting topic, indeed, so I jump in the running train... may the path to freedom be realized by all sentient beings :D

 

I have just finished to read 2 wonderful books "Advice on dying and living a better life" (H.H.) and "Death and the art of dying" (Bokar Rinpoche), both books borrowed from the virtual library (thanks to the owners).

 

As long as I can remember, at the very moment of death, all the bounds of chakras are unknotted for the very subtle energies are gathering at last at the heart chakra " the wheel of phenomena" at the "tingle". The deflation of the right and left channels loosens the constrictions at the channel knots, letting the very subtle wind circulate in the central channel and abide at the essential drop (in the bardo of life it is not possible, except for high yogis). It is only at the time the white and the red drops meet after losing consciousness a brief instant, that the mind is free from all appearances or 84000 concepts or dualistic thoughts.

 

At this time, when the mind perceives the "clear light" (its own nature free of all defilements) and if the person was used with the view of emptiness (lack of inherent existence of everything), the consciousness which experienced "clear light of the path" in meditation can "awake" to the " fundamental clear light" recognizing this "vision" as merely projection of the mind without inherent existence.

"It is said that daughter and mother clear light meet. This means that experiencing the clear light of the path continues into fundamental clear light. That what is called becoming Buddha in the first bardo."

 

So the state of fundamental clear light becomes a source of awakening. Such a mind is particularly powerful to realize reality. Indeed it is a wonderful opportunity, and if we train our mind, death would not have to be feared! 8)

 

If we are not aware of our spiritual true nature, we see it as an external phenomena which frightens us because of its empty nature (there is no more appearance of a self) and we lose our chance to enlightment going trough the next stage of the bardo and so on...

 

Best Regards

 

Ani Cheunyi :D

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Tashi Delek, Simona!

 

I read a book about the five elements....

 

"Healing with Form, Energy, and Light: The Five Elements in Tibetan Shamanism, Tantra, and Dzogchen , from Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche"

 

It may interest you....

 

All the best,

Kama

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