Sunday, April 06, 2014

7 APRIL 2014 - Spring 2014 Term begins

  The IBD's [Institute for Buddhist Dialectical studies] Advanced (English language) Philosophy course taught by Geshe Kelsang Wangmo resumes Monday - 7 APRIL 2014.  The Term will end on 11 JUNE 2014.

The subject matter continues the Perfection of Wisdom studies based upon Maitreya's Ornament for Clear Realizations [Abhisamayalamkara] with the next two topics of Chapter 1:  the Mahayana Path of Preparation & Buddha Nature.

Texts.  Geshe Kelsang Wangmo has prepared a Handout for each subject.  These Handouts serve as the text for every class and include translations from the Tibetan & Indian commentaries that have not been previously translated into English.

DOWNLOAD The first Handout includes a 25-page Review of the subjects covered in prior Terms of this multi-year Perfection of Wisdom course followed by a 31-page text on the Mahayana Path of Preparation.  The Handout on Buddha Nature will be posted later.

Weekly Class Schedule:*

MONDAY, WEDNESDAY & FRIDAY
4:00 - 6:00 pm - MONDAY & FRIDAY
  4:00 - 5:30 pm - WEDNESDAY

Location:                   IBD's Prayer Hall - Main Temple complex
IBD's Prayer Hall is Up (to your right) the first set of Stairs 
of the first Building inside the main Temple Gate.
 **Fee:  300 Rupees per month
(All proceeds sponsor IBD students’ living expenses)

Course Methodology:  The classes are based on the great Tibetan monastic universities’ curricula.  Students will have opportunities to discuss and debate the subject matter in class. 

Course Background:  This blog contains posts that provide general Background information to this Perfection of Wisdom course, suggested Reading List, outline notes of posted classes and MP3 recordings.  

Students:  The challenging course material is aimed at earnest students of Buddhist philosophy.  If you wish to check out the classes, you are welcome to visit before you enroll. 

For Course Information details in India, you may call  Ven. Nordron (94592-01948) or Gilah (89881-56535).  You can also email Ven. Nordron at chogslags-ibd@yahoo.com.


Monday, November 18, 2013

Fall 2013 TERM Did NOT Take Place

The Institute for Buddhist Dialectical Studies, since its inception, has an affiliated relationship with Drepung Loseling Monastery (Karnataka). 

Drepung Loseling Monastery located its North American headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia, over 20 years ago.  In 1998, DLM entered into an affiliation agreement with Emory University.  One aspect of that agreement is that Emory University conducts an annual Winter Semester Study Abroad Program focused on Tibetan culture, etc., in Dharamsala, India.  IBD provides support for that program.  In that connection, Geshe Kelsang Wangmo has been teaching a course in that program for many years.  Among other activities in North America, DLM has a Dharma Center (The Loseling Institute) in Atlanta.

In the Fall of 2013, H.H. the Dalai Lama visited Emory University and the Loseling Institute.  Various associated teachings and meetings were organized in connection with His Holiness visit.  IBD requested Geshe Wangmo to go the United States to participate in those.  Then the FPMT requested Geshe Wangmo to give teachings at some of its Dharma Centers in the U.S.  For these reasons, the Fall 2013 term of the Perfection of Wisdom Course did not take place.

Photo by Chris Majors Photography of Geshe Wangmo at FPMT Land of Medicine Buddha, Soquel, Californes, November 3, 2013 from a Fliker Set.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Handouts & Class Notes - SPRING 2013

Below are links to Handouts & Chart(s) that serve as the text for the first topics of the SPRING term of the Perfection of Wisdom Course.  

The Handouts that are posted here are prepared by Geshe Kelsang Wangmo.  **Links to CLASS NOTES/Partial Transcript (DRAFTS) are  posted below the Handouts.

Every individual Class Blog Post has links to the MP3 files of the class as well as to any PDF materials related to that class.

Please note:  Even though the Creative Commons logo copyright logo does not appear on the downloadable Charts and Handouts, they are also covered by Creative Commons "Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs" Copyright.  [See right hand column.]


Charts

2013 Spring Chart 1 - Ten Bhumis (Grounds) - Seven Pure & Three Impure Bhumis of the Two Arya Paths.

Handouts 1-22

2013 Spring Handout 1 - Introductory Background to Course: Three Wheels of Dharma; Ornament for Clear Realizations.

2013 Spring Handout 2 - Ornament for Clear Realizations - Translator's Homage; Maitreya's Homage and its Meaning, Maitreya's Purpose for composing the Ornament.  [Revised version 4/10/13]

2013 Spring Handout 3 - Summary (i.e., Contents) of Ornament: Eight Clear Realizations. Thirteen Verses listing its 70 Topics. Chapter 1: Topics 1-8 (of its Ten Topics)

2013 Spring Handout 4 - Intro-review of Chapter 1, cont., Topics 9 & 10.  Ch.1 Topic 1 - Bodhicitta:  Two Aspirations.

2013 Spring Handout 5 - Ch. 1, Topic 2 - Ten Mahayana Practice Instructions: (1)-(8) were subjects of Spring 2011-Fall 2012 terms. (9) & (10) - Path of Seeing and Path of Meditation are first set of subjects for Spring 2013; preliminary subject: the Five Paths of Hinayana & Mahayana.  Revision posted 4/20/13.

2013 Spring Handout 6 - Five Paths of Hinayana & Mahayana, Chart. Afflictive Obstructions (Intellectually Acquired & Innate) & Cognitive Obstructions.  Revision posted 4/20/13.

2013 Spring Handout 7 - Afflictive Obstructions & their Seeds, cont.  Cognitive Obstructions - Imprints (not Seeds) of the Afflictions.  Chart:  Mahayana Arya Path Bhumis & Obstructions eliminated thereon.  Mahayana Path of Accumulation:  Causal Awareness required to generate Bodhicitta:  1) Awareness that aspires for Liberation; 2) Equanimity.

2013 Spring Handout 8 - Mahayana Path of Accumulation, cont.:  Causal Awareness required to generate Bodhicitta:  2) Equanimity – necessary prerequisite to generate Bodhicitta with Seven-fold Cause & Effect instructions and Equalizing & Exchanging Self for Others - techniques that can generate other requisite minds, e.g.:  3) Affectionate Love; 4) Great Compassion; 5) Altruistic Attitude; 6) Aspiration to Benefit Others.  Bodhicitta on the Path of Accumulation: dormant & manifold, in continua of Bodhisattvas and Buddhas (on the Fifth Mahayana Path); Aspiration and Engaging Bodhicitta.  Three levels of Mahayana Path of Accumulation:  1) Small, 2) Middling.

2013 Spring Handout 9 - Mahayana Path of Accumulation, cont.:  Middling & Great levels.  Chart - three levels of Path of Accumulation.  Mahayana Path of Preparation:  Four levels, each with three subdivisions (Small, Middling, Great) introduction.

2013 Spring Handout 10 - Mahayana Path of Preparation's Four Levels, cont.:  1) Heat, 2) Peak, 3) Forbearance, 4) Supreme Dharma.  Chart:  Mundane, Arya & Supramundane Paths.  Four types of Misperception re Four types of Conceptual Consciousnesses that grasp at True Existence.

2013 Spring Handout 11 - Path of Preparation.

2013 Spring Handout 12 - Path of Seeing.

2013 Spring Handout 13 - Path of Seeing.

2013 Spring Handout 14 - Path of Seeing.

2013 Spring Handout 15 - Path of Seeing. Path of Meditation.

2013 Spring Handout 16 - Path of Meditation.

2013 Spring Handout 17 - Path of Meditation.

2013 Spring Handout 18 - Path of Meditation.

2013 Spring Handout 19 - Path of Meditation. Path of No-More-Learning.

2013 Spring Handout 20 - Madhyamika-Svatantrika.

2013 Spring Handout 21 - Madhyamika Svatantrika,

2013 Spring Handout 22 - Path of Meditation.



NOTES - Class 6 (April 22) - Handouts 8 & 9.
NOTES - Class 7 (April 24) - Handouts 9 & 10. 
    

Rough drafts of notes/partial transcripts of Spring 2013 Classes on  
Perfection of Wisdom Course topics from Chapter 1 of the Ornament for Clear Realizations, second topic - Ten Pratice Instructions, Topics (8)  Path of Seeing & (9) Path of Meditation, offered for what they are worth, will be posted here as they become available.

If any of the links do not work, please leave a comment or notify us by e-mail.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Class 7 - Path of Preparation - Four Levels

Download PDF's of Class Handouts, Class NOTES and MP3 Tracks from the 7th class of Spring 2013 term held on the 24th day of April.

Geshe Kelsang Wangmo presents first of two classes on the four levels of the Mahayana Path of Preparation.

DOWNLOAD Handouts - text for Class 7

2013 Spring Handout 9 - Mahayana Path of Accumulation, cont.:  Middling & Great levels.  Chart - three levels of Path of Accumulation.  Mahayana Path of Preparation:  Four levels, each with three subdivisions (Small, Middling, Great) introduction.

2013 Spring Handout 10 - Mahayana Path of Preparation's Four Levels, cont.:  1) Heat, 2) Peak, 3) Forbearance, 4) Supreme Dharma.  Chart:  Mundane, Arya & Supramundane Paths.  Four types of Misperceptions re Four types of Conceptual Consciousnesses that grasp at True Existence.


ALL SPRING 2013 PDF Handouts are HERE.
DOWNLOAD MP3 TRACKS:

Track 1 - Oral Quiz Class to Review Path of Accumulation.

Mahayana Path of Preparation (སྦྱོར་ལམ་) - HANDOUT 9

Meditative Stabilization that is a Union of Calm Abiding and Special Insight conceptually realizing Emptiness -- the First Moment of the Path of Preparation.

Four Levels of the Mahayana Path of Preparation:
• Heat
• Peak
• Forbearance
• Supreme Dharma

Track 2 - Meaning of Dualistic Appearance to a conceptual mental consciousness.
  • Generic / Mental Images appear to conceptual mental consciousnesses, e.g., pop song playing over and over in your head; it is not a ‘sound’ but an image of a sound.
  • All phenomena are completely divisible into Conventional or Ultimate Truths.
  • A Conventional Truth always appears to ordinary beings (due to imprints of ignorance) as inherently / truly existent.
Three Ways in which Conceptual Consciousness Realizing Emptiness is a Dualistic Mind:
  1. That mind realizing Emptiness, the lack of true existence, does so by means of a generic image, which appears truly existent.
  2. That mind’s generic representation of Emptiness (Ultimate Truth) is a Conventional Truth.
  3. That mind always experiences subject/object duality: a sense of the subject (the mind) being here and its object (Emptiness) being there.
Summary of three appearances that characterize a conceptual mind realizing Emptiness as a dualistic mind:

• The appearance of inherent existent.
• The appearance of a conventional truth (i.e., the generic image of Emptiness).
• The appearance of subject and object being separate (the mind is here and the object is over there).

To the mind directly realizing Emptiness, none of those three dualities appear.

Appearances of inherent existence to conceptual mind realizing Emptiness:
• The generic image appears to be inherently existent.
• Emptiness, itself, appears to be inherently existent.
• The appearance of subject and object appear to be inherently different.

Method of Directly/Incontrovertibly Realizing Manifest & Slightly Hidden Phenomena is Reversed

Heat (དྲོད་) level - Path of Preparation - HANDOUT 10

  Pervasion between Intellectually Acquired Afflictive Obstructions and Intellectually Acquired Afflictions.

Peak (རྩེ་མོ་) level - Path of Preparation

Forbearance (བཟོད་པ་) level - Path of Preparation – Overcomes Fear of Emptiness

Track 3 - Supreme Dharma (ཆོས་མཆོག་) level - Path of Preparation –

Great Supreme Dharma level of the Path of Preparation is the highest level of the Ordinary Mahayana Paths.
Note: In Class 8, Geshe Wangmo announced that the English translations “Mundane” and “Supramundane” used to describe two types of Paths in Class 7 and its Handouts, would be changed to “Ordinary” and “Superior” as mundane is generally used as translation in another context.
  • Ordinary Paths – Paths of Accumulation and Preparation.  
  • Superior (Arya) Paths – Paths of Seeing, Meditation and No More Learning. Supreme Dharma
Characteristics of the Four Levels of Mahayana Path of Preparation:

A.  Conceptual Realization of Emptiness in dependence upon a union of calm abiding and special insight, which is clear (due to being a calm abiding meditation, free of excitement and dullness).

B.  Four Misconceptions are overcome on Path of Preparation – INTRODUCTION:

On each level of the Path of Preparation, a category of misconceptions concerning the Emptiness of various phenomena is overcome. The terminology describing these different misconceptions may be confusingly unfamiliar (and will be explained more completely in Class 8).

These four ignorant minds are conceptions that apprehend four types of phenomena to be truly existent.

Those four types of phenomena that are mistakenly apprehended as existing truly are:
  1. ‘thoroughly afflicted phenomena being objects of experience’ 
  2.  ‘completely pure phenomena being objects of experience’
  3.  ‘perceivers of substantial existence being experiencers’ 
  4.  ‘perceivers of imputed existence being experiencers’
Misconceptions of true existence regarding some Phenomena are easier to overcome than regarding other types of Phenomena:

  We perceive all phenomena and all of our experience of phenomena as inherently existent. When we analyze how phenomena actually lack true existence, the lack of true existence of anger is easier to understand than the lack of true existence of love; the lack of true existence of table is easier to grasp than the Emptiness of the mind.

  Similarly, the easier to overcome of the Four Misconceptions that are overcome on the Path of Preparation, are overcome in succession of difficulty, one per level.

Class Quiz - Review of Path of Preparation

NOTES - Class 7 (April 24) rough draft transcript of class offered for what it's worth.  


If any of the LINKS don't work, please leave a COMMENT or notify us by E-Mail.

This is the 7th class of the Spring 2013 term the Perfection of Wisdom course
which addresses 8th-10th sub-topics of the 2nd Topic
(Mahayana Practice Instructions) of Chapter 1 of Maitreya's
Ornament for Clear Realizations - Abhisamayalamkara.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Class 6 - Path of Accumulation's Three Levels

Download PDF's of Class Handouts and MP3 Tracks from the 6th class of Spring 2013 term held on the 22nd day of April.

Geshe Kelsang Wangmo presents the three levels of the Mahayana Path of Accumulation.

DOWNLOAD Handouts - text for Class 6
 
2013 Spring Handout 8 - Mahayana Path of Accumulation, cont.:  Causal Awareness required to generate Bodhicitta:  2) Equanimity – necessary prerequisite to generate Bodhicitta with Seven-fold Cause & Effect instructions and Equalizing & Exchanging Self for Others - techniques that can generate other requisite minds, e.g.:  3) Affectionate Love; 4) Great Compassion; 5) Altruistic Attitude; 6) Aspiration to Benefit Others.  Bodhicitta on the Path of Accumulation: dormant & manifold, in continua of Bodhisattvas and Buddhas (on the Fifth Mahayana Path); Aspiration and Engaging Bodhicitta.  Three levels of Mahayana Path of Accumulation:  1) Small, 2) Middling.

2013 Spring Handout 9 - Mahayana Path of Accumulation, cont.:  Middling & Great levels.  Chart - three levels of Path of Accumulation.  Mahayana Path of Preparation:  Four levels, each with three subdivisions (Small, Middling, Great) introduction.

ALL SPRING 2013 PDF Handouts are HERE.
DOWNLOAD MP3 TRACKS:

Track 1 - MAHAYANA PATH OF ACCUMULATION:

Aspirational & Engaging Bodhicitta:
  • the Bodhisattva Vow  
  • Mādhyamika Prāsaṅgika (Consequentialists) & Mādhyamika Svātantrika (Autonomists) Assertions re: Aspirational & Engaging Bodhicitta differ due to their different assertions re: the Nature of Vows.  
    • Consequentialists: Vows are a subtle form present in Bodhisattvas’ continua.  Having taken and maintained the Bodhisattva Vow, Aspiring Bodhicitta is not present. 
    •  Autonomits, et al.: Vows are a Mind that thinks, “I will keep the vow”. When that mind is not manifest, the Bodhisattva has Aspiring Bodhicitta.
Track 2 - Three Levels of the Mahayana Path of Accumulation - HANDOUT 8.
  • Small Mahayana Path of Accumulation:
    • Training in Wisdom on Small Path 
      • Differentiate Bodhisattvas of Sharp & Dull (relatively) Faculties 
      • Inferential Cognition - Necessary to Incontrovertibly Know Slightly Hidden Phenomena 
    • Training in Method (strengthen Bodhicitta & its Causal Minds & the Perfections)
Small Path of Accumulation
Summary of Qualities/Attainments
  •  Bodhicitta can still deteriorate. 
  •  Unless emptiness has been realized before, practitioners need to train in the different types of reasoning that establish the lack of true existence. 
  • Practitioners meditate on Bodhicitta, compassion, the six perfections, etc.
** Note: In Class 8, Geshe Wangmo made a correction to page 1 of HANDOUT 8, in the second sentence of a paragraph near the bottom of the page.  The mistaken sentence (with the error highlighted in bold) read:
Furthermore, even though Bodhicitta is the criterion that determines whether Bodhisattvas are on the Mahayana path, this does not mean that Bodhicitta must always be present in their continua.
The correction should read:
Furthermore, even though Bodhicitta is the criterion that determines whether practitioners are on the Mahayana path, this does not mean that Bodhicitta must always be present in their continua.
Track 3 - Middling Path of Accumulation - HANDOUTS 8 & 9.
  • Generating the Inferential (Conceptual) Cognition Realizing Emptiness 
  • Achieving the Meditative Stability of the Union of Calm Abiding & Special Insight 
Middling Path of Accumulation
Summary of Qualities/Attainments

• Bodhicitta cannot deteriorate anymore.
• Unless taken before, practitioners need to take the Bodhisattva vow.
• Unless realized previously, practitioners need to realize emptiness with an inferential cognizer.
• Unless attained before, practitioners need to attain the meditative stabilization that is a union of calm abiding and special insight.
• Practitioners meditate on Bodhicitta, compassion, the six perfections, etc.

Track 4 - Great Path of Accumulation. - HANDOUTt 9
  • Attain the Mental Stability of Continuous Dharma (ཆོས་རྒྱུན་གྱི་ཏིང་ངེ་འཛིན་) which has the power to hear the Buddhas’ teachings remotely. 
  • Train to Realize Emptiness Conceptually in the Meditative Union of Calm Abiding & Special Insight.
    • How Many Possibilities between Realizing Emptiness Conceptually & Inferentially? 
When you realize Emptiness with an inferential cognizer, you do so conceptually. However, when you realize Emptiness conceptually you don’t necessarily realize it with an inferential cognizer.

Realizing with an inferential cognizer refers to a new realization of Emptiness based on reasoning. But when you strengthen the understanding of Emptiness, you don’t rely so much on the reasoning. And when you have a spontaneous conceptual realization of Emptiness, you are not relying on inferential cognition. When you in the union of calm abiding and special insight, you conceptually realize Emptiness, you do not do so based on inferential cognition. A mental image, not the actual object, appears to the conceptual consciousness.

If we close our eyes and use conceptual consciousness, we have a mental image of an object that we perceived directly with a sense consciousness. It is the opposite when we work to realize Emptiness directly. First, we realize Emptiness conceptually with an inferential cognizer, and then after habituation, we realize Emptiness conceptually without going through inferential reasoning.
Great Path of Accumulation
Summary of Qualities/Attainments

• Practitioners attain the Mental Stability of Continuous Dharma
• Practitioners need to train in the development of the union of calm abiding and special insight conceptually realizing emptiness.
• Practitioners meditate on Bodhicitta, compassion, the six perfections, etc.


NOTES - Class 6 (April 22) rough draft transcript of class offered for what it's worth.  


If any of the LINKS don't work, please leave a COMMENT or notify us by E-Mail.

This is the 6th class of the Spring 2013 term the Perfection of Wisdom course
which addresses 8th-10th sub-topics of the 2nd Topic
(Mahayana Practice Instructions) of Chapter 1 of Maitreya's
Ornament for Clear Realizations - Abhisamayalamkara.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Class 5 - Prerequisites for Generating Bodhicitta

Download PDF's of Class Handouts and MP3 Tracks from the 5th class of Spring 2013 term held on the 17th day of April.


DOWNLOAD Handouts - text for Class 5
 
2013 Spring Handout 7 - Afflictive Obstructions & their Seeds, cont.  Cognitive Obstructions - Imprints (not Seeds) of the Afflictions.  Chart:  Mahayana Arya Path Bhumis & Obstructions eliminated thereon.  Mahayana Path of Accumulation:  Causal Awareness required to generate Bodhicitta:  1) Awareness that aspires for Liberation; 2) Equanimity.

2013 Spring Handout 8 - Mahayana Path of Accumulation, cont.:  Causal Awareness required to generate Bodhicitta:  2) Equanimity – necessary prerequisite to generate Bodhicitta with Seven-fold Cause & Effect instructions and Equalizing & Exchanging Self for Others - techniques that can generate other requisite minds, e.g.:  3) Affectionate Love; 4) Great Compassion; 5) Altruistic Attitude; 6) Aspiration to Benefit Others.  Bodhicitta on the Path of Accumulation: dormant & manifold, in continua of Bodhisattvas and Buddhas (on the Fifth Mahayana Path); Aspiration and Engaging Bodhicitta.  Three levels of Mahayana Path of Accumulation:  1) Small, 2) Middling.

ALL SPRING 2013 PDF Handouts are HERE.
DOWNLOAD MP3 TRACKS:

Track 1 - Virtuous Throwing Karma supports Samsara; Paths cut away at Samsara - how they operate in minds of Bodhisattvas.  Q&A.  Review Obstructions.

Track 2 - Six minds (causal awarenesses) that must be developed before Bodhicitta can be generated, e.g., Renunciation, Equanimity.  Handout 7 & Handout 8.

Track 3 - Handout 8.  Two Techniques (Seven-Fold Cause & Effect & Exchanging Self/Others) to be used together to generate Bodhicitta.


If any of the LINKS don't work, please leave a COMMENT or notify us by E-Mail.
This is the 5th class of the Spring 2013 term the Perfection of Wisdom course which addresses the 8th-10th sub-topics of the 2nd Topic (Mahayana
Practice Instructions) of Chapter 1 of Maitreya's Ornament for Clear Realizations - Abhisamayalamkara.

Yes! Class meeting on Friday, 19 APRIL

The announcement in class on Friday, April 12th was that class would not be held on Friday, 19 April 2013, as a number of students will attend a Dharma teaching in Bir, Kangra District, Himachal Pradesh.

However, in class on Monday, April 15th, the show of hands of students who would not be going to Bir and the number who would be going being about equal, Geshe-la postponed a final decision about holding some type of informal class meeting on Friday, April 19th.

In the class on Wednesday, 17 April, Geshe-la said she would hold an informal class session for those who are in town.  This class will not be a regular class session that covers new material in our text.  Rather, we will have review, discussion and consider some of the debates for the material covered so far.

The regular class will be rescheduled later.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Class 4 - Differentiate Obstrutive "Seeds" & "Imprints"

Download PDF's of Class Handouts and MP3 Tracks from the 4th class of Spring 2013 term held on the 15th day April 2013.

DOWNLOAD Handouts - text for Class 4
 
2013 Spring Handout 6 - Five Paths of Hinayana & Mahayana, Chart. Afflictive Obstructions (Intellectually Acquired & Innate) & Cognitive Obstructions.

2013 Spring Handout 7 - Afflictive Obstructions & their Seeds, cont.  Cognitive Obstructions - Imprints (not Seeds) of the Afflictions.  Chart:  Mahayana Arya Path Bhumis & Obstructions eliminated thereon.  Mahayana Path of Accumulation:  Causal Awareness required to generate Bodhicitta:  1) Awareness that aspires for Liberation; 2) Equanimity.

ALL SPRING 2013 PDF Handouts are HERE.
DOWNLOAD MP3 TRACKS:

Track 1 - Recording of Entire Class - HANDOUTS 6 & 7

If any of the LINKS don't work, please leave a COMMENT or notify us by E-Mail.
This is the 4th class of the Spring 2013 term the Perfection of Wisdom course
which addresses 8th-10th sub-topics of the 2nd Topic
(Mahayana Practice Instructions) of Chapter 1 of Maitreya's
Ornament for Clear Realizations - Abhisamayalamkara.