2022 8-Week Retreat The Vajra Essence Part III – Audio Stream/Download Registration

$108.00$550.00

A virtual retreat from Miyo Samten Ling in Crestone, Colorado

Sponsored by Santa Barbara Institute and the Center for Contemplative Research

The Vajra Essence – Part III
March 31 – May 30, 2022

Audio Stream/Download Registration

 

This online, 8-week retreat will focus on completing Phase 4: “Determining the Characteristics and Qualities of the Ground,” Phase 5: “Determining Secret Dualistic Grasping and Revealing the Way of Natural Liberation” and Phase 6: “Teaching on the Essential Points of Practice and Their Key Distinctions” from The Vajra Essence: From the Matrix of Pure Appearances and Primordial Consciousness, a Tantra Self-Emergent from the Nature of Existence.

Prerequisite Requirements to Purchase Program

By purchasing you acknowledge that you have satisfied the retreat prerequisites of listening to both the 2020 and 2021 8-week retreats on The Vajra Essence and will listen to Lama Alan’s oral commentary to The Vajra Essence in its entirety and have had an empowerment or will receive the recommended empowerment.

If you have not received the Lake-Born Vajra empowerment from Lama Alan, then you should not listen to Yangchen’s teachings on the sadhana (which began after the empowerment was granted during the 2022 8-week retreat on May 11, 2022). We do hope that at a future date the empowerment will be available again.

This year we are offering multiple pricing options as you will see below when you select Choose An Option.

Please read all of the details below under description.

Description

The Vajra Essence – Part III

Phase 4: “Determining the Characteristics and Qualities of the Ground,” Phase 5: “Determining Secret Dualistic Grasping and Revealing the Way of Natural Liberation” and Phase 6: “Teaching on the Essential Points of Practice and Their Key Distinctions” from The Vajra Essence: From the Matrix of Pure Appearances and Primordial Consciousness, a Tantra Self-Emergent from the Nature of Existence.

March 31 – May 30, 2022

The teachings and guided meditations offered during these 8-week retreats are sufficient for achieving shamatha, realizing emptiness, and identifying pristine awareness, and thereby entering the path of the Great Perfection.

The instructions presented in this and any subsequent 8-week retreats on The Vajra Essence are for the sake of progressing along that path to its culmination in the achievement of the rainbow body and perfect enlightenment. At the end of this revelation, the Lake-Born Vajra declares that the unsurpassed quality of the profound path of The Vajra Essence is that it enables those who practice it to identify pristine awareness, dispel their flaws by means of meditation, and finally, by practicing while remaining inactive, become siddhas and experience the state of omniscient enlightenment. But he cautions that this sublime revelation will not remain for long, for there will be no teachers who know how to explain it, and few people who have the karma, prayers, and fortune to receive it.

We at the Santa Barbara Institute, the Center for Contemplative Research, and our partner in these retreats, Wisdom Publications, are offering and recording these teachings so that for generations to come there will indeed be teachers who know how to explain them, and individuals who have the good fortune to experience their full benefits.

During this 8-week retreat, Lama Alan will grant an oral transmission and commentary to Düdjom Lingpa’s revealed treatise, The Vajra Essence, picking up where we left off last May in Phase Four, “Determining the Characteristics and Qualities of the Ground.”

During our prior 8-week retreats, we covered the first three phases and part of the fourth phase of this masterpiece, in which the Lake-Born Vajra gives complete teachings on achieving śamatha and vipaśyanā and on identifying pristine awareness.

If you have not received the Lake-Born Vajra empowerment from Lama Alan, then you should not listen to Yangchen’s teachings on the sadhana (which began after the empowerment was granted during the 2022 8-week retreat on May 11, 2022). We do hope that at a future date the empowerment will be available again.

Phase 4 cont.

As we return to Phase 4, the Lake-Born Vajra had already pointed out that after you have ascertained the view of emptiness, you must reveal the nature of the ground, Samantabhadra. For this, there are two possibilities: (1) directly identifying it in your own being by practicing the Great Perfection alone, and (2) identifying it in dependence upon the expedient path of the stage of generation. This is followed by a detailed explanation of core elements of the stages of generation and completion practice as viewed from the perspective of the Great Perfection. We return to this section of the text that begins with generating the wrathful mandala and the actualization of oneself as the supreme basis of emanation of all wrathful beings, Heruka, in union with his divine partner, Ākāśāmukhī.

Phase 5

Phase 5 presents detailed teachings on how to follow the path of the Great Perfection, beginning with a review of the four revolutions in outlook and then introducing the view, meditation, and conduct of the Great Perfection. This is followed by instructions on how to respond to outer and inner upheavals triggered by one’s practice, and on keeping one’s samayas and vows. This phase concludes with a discussion of the benefits taking primordial consciousness, pristine awareness, as the path.

Phase 6

Phase 6 presents definitive teachings on the essential points of practice and their key distinctions. These include precise explanations of the differences between understanding, realization, and acquiring confidence; between mind and pristine awareness, mentation and wisdom, conditioned consciousness and primordial consciousness, what is and is not the path, and other crucial distinctions.

Phase 7

The concluding phase 7 deals primarily with the culminating practice of the direct crossing-over to spontaneous actualization, which will not be explained at this time. But if time allows, Lama Alan may provide a commentary to other topics in this phase, including a concise explanation of the six transitional phases.

This is the third in a series of 8-week retreats that will cover the first six of the seven phases as presented in this most elaborate of all Düdjom Lingpa’s pure visionary teachings on the Great Perfection. The oral transmission and commentary on the seventh phase will eventually be granted only to those individuals who have gained a firm, experiential foundation in the first six.

Co-Teachers Glen Svensson and Eva atanya (Yangchen Osel)

During this retreat, co-teacher Glen Svensson will lead two 1 hour Zoom sessions each week. He will provide summaries, background and guided review meditations pertaining to the topics discussed in the text. Glen will also answer emailed questions by retreatants, as he has done in the past 8-week retreats. His Zoom sessions will be on Thursdays and Sundays 19:00 AEST and will be recorded to view at a convenient time.

 

Co-teacher Eva Natanya (Yangchen Osel) will lead several 1 hour to 1.5 hour sessions each week, on a flexible schedule. These sessions will include guided meditations and further exploration of the practices of the stages of generation and completion as taught in Phase 4 of the Vajra Essence, as well as auxiliary explanations and guided meditations synchronized with Lama Alan’s teachings on Phases 5, 6, and possibly portions of Phase 7 of The Vajra Essence. Yangchen will also answer emailed questions on these practices.

 

Listening to these additional teachings is strongly recommended for everyone participating in this retreat.

 

 

A message from Lama Alan:

“To honor the sacred lineage of these teachings, I do ask that anyone who registers for this retreat listen to my oral commentary to The Vajra Essence in its entirety, though you may take as much time as you wish to do so. Also, please know that you may register for this particular retreat at any time, even after it is over. We want these teachings to be available to you for the long term.”

PLEASE READ THIS INFORMATION IN ITS ENTIRETY PRIOR TO REGISTERING

 

This year there are Retreat Prerequisites to Participate.

2020 and 2021 8-week retreats: The Vajra Essence Part I and II

The most important prerequisite for participating in this retreat is that all applicants must have already listened to the oral transmission and commentary on the opening phases of The Vajra Essence by Lama Alan given during the first and second retreats in this series, offered during April – May, 2020 and 2021 via either the SBI audio-stream or the Wisdom online retreat.

Recitations and Additional Recommended Teachings

While there are no references to the five sets of 100,000 recitations of preliminary practices in any of Düdjom Lingpa’s five revealed treatises on Dzogchen, in his treatise The Foolish Dharma of an Idiot Clothed in Mud and Feathers and in his lineage-holder Sera Khandro’s text The Fine Path to Liberation, clear teachings on the inner and outer preliminary practices are given. Each of these is essential to the authentic practice of Dzogchen.

As a basis for those practices that are specifically intended as preliminaries to Vajrayana practice, applicants should have already established a sound basis in understanding and practice of the foundations of Buddhism, including śamatha, the four applications of mindfulness, the four immeasurables, and relative and ultimate bodhicitta. Such understanding and experience can be acquired by listening to, studying, and practicing any one of the following sets of teachings:

The following eight-week retreats:

Alternatively, applicants may listen to the following recordings of week-long retreats sponsored and available from the Santa Barbara Institute for Consciousness Studies:

Empowerment

There is also a requirement that you have received an empowerment to participate in this retreat.

The link below is for an online empowerment, in case you have not received one.
Empowerment video
Sadhana link

If you have not received the Lake-Born Vajra empowerment from Lama Alan, then you should not listen to Yangchen’s teachings on the sadhana (which began after the empowerment was granted during the 2022 8-week retreat on May 11, 2022). We do hope that at a future date the empowerment will be available again.

Essential Reading

Stilling the Mind: Shamatha Teachings from Düdjom Lingpa’s Vajra Essence
Fathoming the Mind: Inquiry and Insight in Düdjom Lingpa’s Vajra Essence

Recommended Background Reading:

The Attention Revolution
The Four Immeasurables
Minding Closely

Retreat Information

  • The daily schedule for the retreat consists of 2 1/2 to 3 hours each day, in two sessions, Monday-Saturday.
  • First daily session: Teachings and Meditation on The Vajra Essence from Lama Alan.
  • Second daily session: Meditation and Q & A with Lama Alan
    or Meditation and Teaching with Eva Natanya (Yangchen Osel).
  • This second session may sometimes go longer than one hour.
  • These sessions will not be live-streamed.
  • Glen’s Zoom sessions will be Thu and Sun 19:00 AEST.
  • All of the sessions will be recorded to view at your convenience.
  • You will be able to listen to the recordings at any time, and your access will not expire.
  • All students in the retreat will be provided with retreat notes from Lama Alan, Glen and Yangchen.

Tiered Pricing System & Scholarships

We are offering a new, tiered pricing system so that fewer people will need to make a formal scholarship request.

Full-scholarships are available for monastics and those in full-time retreat.
To request a scholarship please complete this scholarship application.

2022 Retreat Facebook Group

Senior students of Lama Alan will moderate a 2022 8-week retreat Facebook Group for our virtual sangha to discuss or ask questions, find a buddy, and have support.

After you have registered for the retreat a link to join the group will be sent to you along with the login information for the SBI media site where you will be able to access the daily recordings as well as additional resources provided during the retreat.

Solitary Retreat?

If anyone is doing a solitary retreat and would like additional support, please let us know.

Technical Issues?

If you have technical issues with the audio-stream, or other issues please
email: retreats@sbinstitute.com

Please do not share the recording with those who are not registered for the retreat.

The first recordings should be available by April 2, but we hope to have them sooner.

 

Additional information

Price Options

Benefactor $550, Regular Price $225, Scholarship Discount $108

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