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Six Yogas of Naropa

Khensur Rinpoche
Vajrapani Institute, 12/2/16 - 12/10/16

Friday 12/2 7:30pm Rinpoche

The teaching that we are listening to is the Six Yogas of Naropa from the Three Inspirations by
the great Lama Tsong Khapa. In general these six yogas of Naropa were taught by our teacher
the Buddha in the aspect of Vajradhara in the tantras. Later on Naropa gathered these
teachings into the six and they came to be known as the Six Yogas of Naropa. Nevertheless
they all do come from Vajradhara.

And so the six are, as taught by Je Rinpoche:

1. Inner heat included with karma mudra

2. Illusory body
3. Clear light
4. Intermediate state
5. Dreams
6. Transference of consciousness and entering the body of another

These practices come from the tantra of Shri Chaturpita, Guhyasamaja, and Hevadra. From
Naropa to Marpa to Milarepa, Gampopa, ... Because he taught them in this order and structure.
But ultimately these teachings come from the Buddha himself.

As for how Je Rinpoche came to have these teachings, he received them from Genra Drakpa
Jangchub, a Kagyu lama, and passed them on to Genra Sonam Gyeltesen, who passed them
on to Khedrup Rinpoche.

This lineage, the way this teaching came down to Je Rinpoche starting with Drakpa Jangchub.
This is described by Gendun Gyatso, stated in his six yoga teaching, and also Sonam Gyatso.

As for the basis on which one would receive this teaching, one's mind should be trained in the
common path and have received the four initiations of the highest yoga tantra.

When it says the mind needs to be trained in the common path, what that means is your mind
should be trained in the way of the three beings of different capabilities: small, middle, and

As for the practices in common with the person of small capability, we have the practice of guru
devotion. This is not included in the stages of the path of small capability, because it's
something you need whatever you're doing. And next there's the precious human rebirth. Some
people include that in the small capability. And some say that starts with meditating on death.
The outer condition of the spiritual guide and the inner condition of the precious human rebirth
are shared by persons of all capabilities.

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Small capability starts with death, refuge, karma, suffering, and its results.

It says in the Songs of Experience that this life of leisure, our precious human rebirth, is superior
to a wish fulfilling jewel, and something we only have at this time. How precious it is, and how
very difficult it is to attain, that you don't get all the time.

This precious human life with the eight leisures and ten endowments. If we think on it well, we
will see that the many habitual activities we have are meaningless, and we will feel great regret
for engaging in those meaningless activities until now. When you have that regret of having
wasted so much time until now, then you have the motivation to only spend your time on that
which is worthwhile from now on. And then when you get a precious human life you'll make sure
to put a great effort into practicing the dharma without being sucked into various distractions.
The precious human rebirth is one of the most important things to motivate us to spend our time

And then meditating on impermanence/death. If we think well on that we see that we must
prepare for the time after this life is over, otherwise we are too preoccupied with the things of
this life. To prepare means to practice dharma. Like if you know you have to go somewhere
you'll make preparations for that journey. Just like that, we give up attachment to this life and
make preparations for what comes after.

Also when it comes to reflecting on karma and its results, through reflecting on that we avoid
carelessness. Understanding that when you do something virtuous it leads to happiness, when
you do something non-virtuous it leads to suffering. How karma increases, how you don't
experience the fruits of something you haven't done, and once you have created karma the
result is never lost. When you think well about this it will cause you to avoid carelessness on the
level of your there doors: actions of body, speech, and mind. Avoiding being careless means
avoiding misconduct of body, speech, and mind. Because you understand that you want
happiness, so you should create the causes of happiness. And since you don't want suffering
you avoid the causes of suffering. By reflecting well on karma and its results you reject
carelessness and you become careful in your actions of body, speech, and mind.

These two practices of refuge and reflecting on karma and its results are the dharma jewel for
the person of small capability. The actual refuge is the dharma jewel. It saves one from the
lower realms. For the practitioner of lower result you have from reflecting on death, the result of
avoiding lower rebirth. Even if our aim is enlightenment, but our result is the lower realms. It's
important to reflect on refuge and karmic results because they stop you from being careless in
actions of body, speech, and mind. Virtuous actions lead to fortunate rebirths.

This idea that refuge and karma and its results, because they save us from a negative result,
this was taught by Geshe Potawa.

When you reflect on the four noble truths, that protects you from cyclic existence: truths of
suffering, origin, path, and cessation. The union of method and wisdom will protect you from the
two types of obscurations: afflictive and knowledge. When you think of the four noble truths you
think of the general, suffering nature of cyclic existence: the eight, six, and three sufferings.
Reflecting on this will lead to liberation from the whole of cyclic existence. You need to reflect on
suffering. And when you do that you will give rise to renunciation. When you think how you are
tormented by various types of suffering, that's called renunciation. And you want to achieve
liberation. And when you think of other suffering beings and how they suffer in the same way,

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that gives rise to compassion. If you don't have insight into how you suffer, you won't give rise to
understanding how others suffer.

For the practitioners of great capability, having generated renunciation you need to practice
love, compassion, and bodhicitta. If you don't, even if you do practice the six yogas, it won't go
well. The energy of attaining enlightenment in one lifetime comes from bodhicitta. If you have
love and compassion then we can get the tantric realizations. If you don't have strong
compassion and love, you really won't be able to get tantric realizations.

Dharmarakshita, author of the Wheel of Sharp Weapons, states that there are eight benefits of
love. One of them is realizing emptiness effortlessly. There are amazing benefits from
meditation on love, it's a very beneficial practice.

If one meditates on bodhicitta the benefits are even more than that, limitless. Bodhicitta
accumulates merit and purifies the obscurations. Even if the bodhicitta is artificial, even that is
able to purify very very heavy negative karma. You also need to have the correct view realizing

All faults come from the self cherishing mind, and bodhicitta is the antidote. And it's very simple
to reflect on bodhicitta during any activities. For example, while eating you can think I need to
attain enlightenment for the benefit of all sentient beings and for that reason I will eat this food.
Likewise using this house: if only all sentient beings could have such a nice place to live. Of
course all the beings in the hell realms, even other human beings. May all sentient beings
having difficulty finding a place to stay have such a nice place. May all sentient beings have
good food to eat. By making this offering may I free all sentient beings, lead all sentient beings
to enlightenment. In this way you create an infinite amount of merit.

When you want to practice tantra, having this attitude that you want to benefit others is
extremely important, and your tantric practice will go well. If you don't have that attitude then
your tantric practice won't go well.

And so you can practice bodhicitta, reflect on bodhicitta at all times. When we are coming and
going, working, it's always to achieve relief from suffering. Think, if only sentient beings were
free from suffering. And look at other beings and realize they are only trying to achieve freedom
from suffering and achieve happiness. And even give all of your virtue away for that to come
about. You can think of bodhicitta at all times.

When you have a good heart your level and path will be good. When you have a bad heart your
level and your path will be bad.

This is the motivation that you need for listening for this teaching on the six yogas of Naropa.
Listening to this teaching should be held by wishing to attain enlightenment for the benefit of all
sentient beings.

And so that's the explanation of training the mind in the common path, and generating the right
motivation for receiving this teaching. Tomorrow I'll start talking about the actual six yogas of


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7am Ven. Rene
They say doing the six session guru yoga you reach enlightenment in a maximum of sixteen

Some say that the refuge prayer was composed by the Buddha from the Avatamkasa sutra,
others Atisha. Regardless this is extremely important because it is bodhicitta which
distinguishes this from a lower path. What we need to be thinking is that I have to achieve full
awakening for the sake of all sentient beings, and for that reason I am going to be listening to
these profound teachings on the six yogas of Naropa.

Anybody that has the bodhisattva or tantric vows has the commitment to generate bodhicitta
three times every day and every night. There are limitless benefits to generating bodhicitta, so
we should recite this verse whenever we can. (Sang gyä / I go for refuge...)

Last night I explained briefly about how to train the mind in the common path (in common with
persons of small, middling and great capability).

There are two different ways of listing the six yogas:

Three Convictions lists them this way:

1. Inner heat
2. Karma mudra
3. Illusory body (including bardo, intermediate state, and Dream)
4. Clear light
5. Thought transference
6. Entering into the others body

Holders of LTKs tradition:

1. Inner heat
2. Illusory body
3. Clear light
4. Dream
5. Intermediate state
6. Thought transference and entering the body of another

There are unique preliminaries for tantra, which means we have to have received the four pure
initiations and should be living in the samaya or the pledges and restraints.

As for which initiation - any highest yoga tantra initiation or empowerment will do, e.g. Hevadra,
Chakrasamvara, Guhyasamaja,... in the case of Vajrayogini, you should have received the
Chakrasamvara empowerment prior. We have all received a highest yoga tantra empowerment
and are abiding in the pledges and restraints.

Especially in order to purify the continuum there is the preliminary practice of Vajrasattva. And
to receive blessings in the continuum there is the practice of guru yoga.

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As for the guru yoga practice, there are many of those, for example if you are doing the six
session guru yoga in the morning that would suffice, and on top of that the Vajrasattva. In the
case of deity practice, self generation, e.g. you have the Vajrayogini. You can either use the six
session or the Vajrayogini - either has the six session and is complete. Besides that, you have
the Vajrasattva meditation and recitation. Likewise Yamamtaka has guru yoga and Vajrasattva

If you are going to practice the six yogas on the basis of the six session guru yoga there is a
certain point you say "I manifest again as Vajrasattva, with the divine pride of Vajrasattva." Or
similarly as Vajrayogini. Manifest as her, having the divine pride. The guru would have dissolved
into you and you would have manifest with the divine pride of Vajrayogini. And then you do your
six yogas meditation.

Briefly: recite the six session guru yoga, you say that you appear in the form of whatever deity,
and then on that basis you do the six yogas of Naropa practice.

If you're going to practice in the context of Vajrayogini, at the end of the sadhana you have the
inconceivable yoga practice and after that you arise in the form of Vajrayogini instantaneously
between sessions. At that point you can do the six yogas of Naropa practice. Prior to that you
do the generation and you visualize yourself with an empty body filled with rainbow light. This is
very important to do. You have the practice of purifying the body. This helps to heal the
channels and the winds. At the moment the channels are crooked and so forth, acting as an
obstacle to practicing the six yogas, and the airs are impure with a tendency to go outward
instead of into the central channel. Then you generate as the deity, meditate as the selfless
deity on the six yogas. That's the long sadhana context. For the short, you meditate just with the
empty body and rainbow inside.

Even though one can do this practice on the basis of any deity, the masters of the past have
tended to practice it on the basis of Heruka or Vajrayogini because these contain the practice of
putting on the deities of the armor on the body. You can do it on the basis of Yamantaka and
Guhyasamaja as well. This can also be understood in connection with the inner, outer, and
secret Vajrayoginis. It can be done in the context of Hevadra, but mostly in this other way.

With these practices of thinking of the body as completely empty and the purification of the
body, according to one master, you can dispense with those practices, and if you do them it's
like a "branch of excellence" and you can also do without. You do find the practice in LTK's
Three Convictions and other texts, but they are not indispensable. The reason is that when you
are doing the vase breathing you can do that in a rougher or more gentle way. With the forceful
aggressive way, that involves thinking the airs in the top body come down, and the lower come
down, meeting at the navel, and forming a vase there. If you do this a little it's ok, but if you do
this a lot it can bring certain obstacles with the airs. The gentle way of doing it involves simply
imagining bringing the airs downward and upwards and on that basis do the vase breathing, and
on that basis do the fire of the inner heat. In that way you don't have the obstacle of the airs
coming at all.

Now in terms of the outline for this part of the text, you can have a list of six, seven, or eight.
The list I just went through includes seven, so doesn't include the empty body practice. If you
count that it would be the first and there would be eight. Otherwise:

1. Meditating on the channels

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2. Training on the pathway of the channels
3. Visualizing the letters
4. Lighting the fire of inner heat
5. Blazing the fire of inner heat
6. Ordinary blazing and dripping
7. Special blazing and dripping


Let's talk about this on the basis of visualizing yourself as Vajrayogini. The first is visualizing the
channels. When in the form of Vajrayogini your perception is in the nature of light, including the
body. Then you want to think of the central channel. It's towards the back side of the body rather
than towards the front.

As for the color of the central channel, according to Je Rinpoche's three convictions, the outside
is blue and the inside is red. According to some, the outside is red, but slightly different from
Vajrayogini's body in order to keep them unmixed - a kind of shiny red to distinguish it. Some
texts also mention a reddish yellow. Whichever tradition you follow doesn't matter.

As for how wide it is, the text mentions no more than the thickness of a wheat straw/shaft. You
can also think of the size of a fruit juice straw [clarified to an ordinary drinking straw]. That would
also be just right.

So then you think that the lower end is four fingers below the level of the navel. The upper end
comes up to the crown of the head and hooks round to the third eye position, in the center of the
forehead above the eyebrows.

This central channel has four characteristics:

1. Clear and lucid - transparent

2. Soft and flexible/pliant - doesn't snap when bent

3. Straight like an arrow

4. Red color is deep and bright (only in the context of imagining the central channel red)

Then to the right of the central channel you have roma, primarily red in color through which the
blood flows. To the left you have gyangma, white in color, through which the white bodhicitta
flows. These three channels have no space between them, then the left and right go down a
little further and then join into the central channel, four fingers below the level of the navel.

At the upper end, the central channel finishes at the forehead, the two right and left end at the
two nostrils.

That's the first point, visualizing the channels. All three channels are all empty and their nature
is light. Just as it says of the first of the four characteristics of the central channel: clear,


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There's a practice at this point you can do - nine practices for dispelling the impure airs. You
make a fist with the thumb against the bottom of the index finger. Thumb inside. Put at your
knees. Now extend your arms starlight forward. Draw your left arm across chest (fingers of fist
outward), right arm covers it, then indeed finger extends and blocks the left nostril. Breath in
from left, then block the right nostril, breath out from right nostril.

You're getting rid of the various faults of the left channel, such as the channel being broken,
torn. When you breath in you breath in all the blessings of Buddhas as white light, and when
you breath out you breath out all the faults of the left channel.

You have three repetitions like that, in through right, out from left. Then you do three breathing
in through left and out through right. And then at the end you clear out the obstacles of the
central channel. Again, you are repairing a broken, rotten channel, breathing out trash.

Then in the way that you've seen, you extend the two arms out front, bring the fist into the other
side, and use the index finger in the opposite way.

With the first set of three, dealing with the faults of the left channel (breathing in through right,
out through left), think, just as when you join water pipes, you think the lower end of the right
channel is inserted into the lower end of the left channel. With the next set of three, breathing in
through left and out through right to eliminate the faults of the right channel, imagine for those
three that the lower end of the left is inserted into the lower end of the right channel.

With the last three, you are purifying the faults of the central channel, trash rubbish inside being
cleansed out as you breath out. Here you have the right and left channel both hooked up into
the central channel. When you breath in you breath through the right and left channels, and then
into the central channel, drawing out all the faults of the central channel. Besides this, also
imagine you are breathing out all the faults of hatred with the right, attachment with the left. And
closed minded ignorance with the central channel. You might recall we are encouraged to sleep
by blocking the right channel because it is more associated with anger.

When your are doing this breathing exercise purifying the channels: right into left, left into right,
and then right and left both inserted into central channel.


So we've done the first one visualizing the channels, and then the nine round breathing.
Second, we consider the chakra wheels.

According to the six yogas of Naropa there's a mention of six yogas to meditate on. The first is
at the crown, the chakra of great bliss. At the throat, chakra of enjoyment. At the heart, the
dharma chakra. The fourth at the navel, the chakra of emanation.

Where the heart chakra is is at the level of the two breasts. The right and left channel both form
three knots each, they circle the central channel three times each ("the three knots") by the right
circling the left, and also the left around the right - alternating, in total six loops. And then four
channels coming out from the level of the heart: channels of north, east, south, and west. From
each of those the channels divide up into two. These are the first channels that form in the body.

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Q: Is it more important to stop attachment at the time of death?

Of the two, what would be more important would be hatred, because at the time the Buddha
entered Parinirvana he blocked the right channel, the channel most associated with hatred.


It's mainly because of what can go wrong when you go about the rough way of doing it. It
mentions having four features, one of which is the vase breathing, bringing the airs upwards and
downward to meet at the navel. When you are new at the practice you should do it briefly.
Otherwise if you hold it too long when you are not really practiced in doing this, you are holding
the airs and instead of going into the central channel go other places leading to physical and
mental illnesses. Whereas, if you simply do it with the mind, bringing the airs down and up to
meet and heat the ember like a coal, you don't have the same risk.

Q: Could you describe the knot as a weave around the central channel?

The knots twist around opposite sides, but they aren't tied like regular knots. They loosen when
the central channel gets filled with air.

Q: Do the channels differ for male and females: right blood and left bodhicitta?

Both the same. Red bodhicitta, white bodhicitta, and air in all, but in the right, principally the red.

2pm Lorne Meditation and Q&A

[get recording*]

In short six session practice, pause after fifth verse, bring Vajradhara to your crown, dissolve
into you, dissolve your body into his, dissolve into emptiness, then arise as hollow body.
Contemplate details of this body.

Rinpoche prepared for two months before teaching this topic in Washington, DC, and this time
he began to prepare in the summer. He compared different texts, and subtle differences in
visualizations between teachers. All are valid.

The first parts of the points are related to tummo practice, inner fire. People want to jump ahead
to igniting the fire, but it's good to spend a long time just on the first channel visualization and
breathing. One ideally should spend quite a long time meditating on the four channels, chakras,
and syllables. The whole point of the practices is to dissolve the winds into the central channel.
Later you might generate heat but it won't dissolve into central channel. Being able to visualize
all these details at first enables success at the later states. Otherwise it won't be a completion
stage practice.

In reality the central channel is collapsed and squeezed, and the side channels are more open,
but we visualize the opposite because that is the goal of the practice. The central channel a little
bigger because the air is in the central channel, and the sides slightly less inflated.

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When falling asleep, the advice of the Buddha is to lay on one's right side to decrease tendency
towards anger or hatred. Then one can relax once asleep.

The width of the straw is by logic about the size of a soda straw, because the cushion for the
syllables is about the size of a half pea.

In the root tantras and Indian commentaries, when focusing on the navel, they don't do vase
breathing at the same time. At some point along the way that was added in - holding the breath
- introduced in the Tibetan tradition? At first if one can just place one's mind at the navel on the
syllable it can ignite, also imagining the air coming from above and below, but breathing
naturally. If you do that well, the air will become more and more subtle until the breath naturally
stops. Rinpoche refers to this as the gentle method. Tibetan masters found that if you combine
these techniques things can be accelerated: the rough method, counting (108!) etc. If you do
that a lot in the wrong way it can become dangerous.

Can do visualization with straight channels or knots.

Herbert Benson did a study on tummo practitioners. With the Dalai Lama's permission. "Their
body temperature increased markedly, while their breathing and heart rate decreased, which is
scientifically impossible. So further study is needed."

3:30pm Rinpoche

Do the practice with the arms more forcefully than the demonstration earlier, pulling fists up

When to do the six yogas in Vajrayogini sadhana? In the extensive sadhana you generate body
mandala deities before inconceivable yoga, and then you do all the steps of visualizing
channels, letters, etc. Again they have to be collected. One diagram explains dissolution. That
has to be absorbed. And then with the short one, you can do the hollow body and channel
visualization before the inconceivable yoga.

Why is it ok to do the practice before inconceivable yoga in the short sadhana? Because you
don't have the deities of the body mandala. You can't do the practice when you have all the
deities of the body mandala. You have to absorb them. That's why you do the inconceivable
yoga, generation as deity, and then the hollow body, channels. Whereas in the short sadhana
you don't do the body mandala.


We're looking at the heart chakra, the way the right and left channel form knots around the
central channel at the level of the heart. Right channel loops clockwise and the left channel
loops counter clockwise. Right channel goes around, and then under itself, not just straight
around. And the left does the same.

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There are eight channels with the heart chakra. Like an umbrella. Channel wheel chakra is
called the wheel of dharma. The exalted wisdom of nondual bliss and emptiness. The ultimate
place, the vital point where you achieve the bliss of nondual emptiness
is at the heart chakra. Where the subtle wind and mind drop are. When we talk about
penetrating the vital point, that's the main place you emphasize: at the heart.

Navel chakra has sixty four channels, red in color, directed like an umbrella the wrong way up,
so it's facing the heart chakra. The outer shape of the tubes is triangular, inner round.
Symbolizing the union of bliss and emptiness.

This chakra is called the chakra of emanation, because it emanates the wisdom of bliss and
emptiness, causes it to be born. It's in the center of that navel chakra that you have the tummo
inner fire that you cause to blaze. The element at the crown melts, and through it melting and
descending you get the exalted wisdom of bliss and emptiness.

It's also called the chakra of fire, the fire chakra. Fire naturally goes upwards just like water
naturally goes downward. It's the place where you ignite the fire in the inner heat and it faces

At the crown you have the chakra of great bliss which has thirty two channels. You can visualize
it having a white color, but it can also be variegated. You can see in the picture that it is so here.
Likewise the navel chakra can be visualized red or variegated. Outer tube shape is triangular,
inner round, facing downwards.

This chakra at the crown is called the chakra of great bliss. The wheel of great bliss. When this
body forms, you have the one part of the white substance remains at the heart. And one part
goes to the crown of the head in the center of the central channel at the level of the crown
chakra. Just as part of the red substance remains at the heart, forming a capsule. And the other
part of the red substance goes to the navel, generates the heat.

When we generate this wisdom of great bliss and emptiness it is through melting the drop. The
letter HUM is at the crown, that substance in nature or entity great bliss. Because through its
melting one comes to experience great bliss.

At the throat you have the chakra of enjoyment with sixteen channel petals. It is also a fire
chakra and thus it is red in color. It's nature is fire. Just as when white it indicates its nature is
liquid or water. In this chakra you have the letter OM, which is red in color, being very hot and
burning, in the nature of fire. Thus it is facing upwards because fire naturally faces upwards.
The outer and inner shape in both cases is round.

This chakra is called the chakra of enjoyment because it is in the throat that you enjoy the
various flavors, the six flavors. Therefore it is referred to as the chakra of enjoyment.

In this way you have the three channels, and the four chakras: crown, throat, heart, and navel.
And these channels should all be visualized not as solid flesh and blood, but as clear, lucid, and
in the nature of light.

You should also think these channels are clear in the sense that there's no blockage. They're
completely straight, like from the navel chakra you can see all the way up to the crown, etc.

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You have these channels of the different chakras coming out from the right and left channels,
because the right and left channels loop around the central channel. Essentially where they
trace back to is the central channel. Like from the heart, one north, south, east, west, coming
from the central channel. This is the case with all the channels - they ultimately come from the
central channel.

You should also think for this meditation that even though you have the right/left channels
around the central channel, think that they are loose, and unconstricted, and because of this
you can see all the way down and up.

That completes the explanation of how to visualize the channels.


You think that inside the central channel at the level of the heart you have what is in fact
nondual bliss and emptiness, its aspect is the white and red substances. The white on top and
the red below, radiating five colored lights, the size of the mustard seed.

We all have a very subtle air and a very subtle mind. The mind which operates at the moment is
gross compared to the very subtle mind. The way that the subtle mind will manifest in terms of
the basis: it will become manifest at death. At death the twenty-five gross phenomena gradually
cease to function and dissolve: earth to water, water to fire, fire to air, white appearance, red
increase, black attainment. And at the end of that process you have the very subtle mind
becoming manifest through a process where the grosser minds dissolve and cease to function.
This manifests through the force of one's meditation. The aspect of the very subtle wind and
mind is the combination of white and red drops, radiating five colored lights. According to some
texts you should consider that your mind and the mind of the guru and yidam are inseparable.

And so as your very subtle mind in that aspect you look up and you can see the throat very
clearly, see how its nature is light. But before that you need to look at the eight petal channels of
the heart, you see that they are white in color, eight channels, inside they are empty, light in
nature, and then you look up. And when you look up you can see very clearly, directly to the
chakra at the throat and you go up to the throat chakra. And there you see the channels are
empty, radiating light, sixteen of them, red color, outer and inner shapes round. This is how you
train in the paths and channels.

And then having done that, you look up and you see as far as the crown chakra, you see that
the central channel up to there is completely clear and empty, and you go up to the crown
chakra. What you're doing is you become familiar with the channels. You're checking out the
channels. You see in the case of the crown chakra the thirty two channels, variegated color,
triangular shape. From the crown you look down to the center, and you go down to the end of
the central channel at the brow, and you're in the aspect of the combination of white and red
drops. Half is inside and half is outside the central channel. If in the form of Vajrayogini you
would look at your form, arms, body, etc. and see that your body is radiating light throughout the
whole universe.

Having done that you head up to the crown chakra and you do the same as before in terms of
checking out the channels, how many there are and so on. Then the heart, then the navel. You
imagine that you are in the middle of the navel chakra, and it's just like if you go into a house,
when you switch on a flashlight, everything is clear. You see the colors of the sixty-four

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 11 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

channels are red. You see that they are facing upwards, that the channels of this chakra are
triangular outside and round inside, and we see all of this very clearly.

If you get that far you've done this training in the channels one time. You can do it once, or three
items, or however many times. At the end you have to make sure that you end up a the heart.


Now we get to the third point which is visualizing the letters. First starting at the crown chakra,
the chakra of great bliss, like and umbrella facing downwards, you think that in the center of this
is a moon disk the size of a pea that's been split open. The letter is the letter HAM, upside
down, hanging from the moon disk. It's white in color being in the nature of water. It's like the
frost that forms, a dew drop, so that in the morning you see the dew on the tip of a blade of
grass that's ready to drop at any moment.

Then at the throat inside the central channel you have the letter OM on a moon cushion (or sun
cushion). According to LTK all four cushions are a moon seat. It should be red in color, very hot
and tangible. Mostly you should think of it as an OM. In some teachings it is a HUM.

And then at the heart at the center of the wheel of dharma on a moon cushion you have the blue
letter HUM. It can alternatively be white in color. It's nature is white bodhicitta just like the HUM
at the crown, like it's on the verge of falling. This one also is upside down.

Then at the navel you have on a moon cushion the tummo fire, inner heat. Imagine it like the
diagram, triangular. With the crescent moon above it, the circle, the nada. All three have the
crescent, circle, and squiggle.

Think that it is a very hot tangible object, red in color, on the verge of igniting or blazing. Just like
when you blow on burning coals - just about to start blazing.

It's standing on a moon cushion as before, the size of a split pea. And you also think that the
size is the size of a mustard seed. The same size for all four letters.

And you need to think that all four letters are in nature bliss. All four are also lucid, clear, and
radiating light. And think that these letters are in fact your own mind that it inseparable from the
mind of the special deity, appearing in the aspect of the letters.

And when you are meditating on these letters you shouldn't think of them "over there" but rather
meditate in the manner of the mind having absorbed into the letter.

The navel chakra is pointed upwards, and the heart chakra is pointed at the navel, and the
throat up towards the crown. Navel represents method and heart wisdom. The union of bliss
and emptiness. With the outer and inner shape it's the shape of the channels themselves. Like
the navel the outer shape is triangular and the inner shape round.

The inside shape in every case is round. The external shape varies. The channels at the crown
and at the navel are triangular outside. The channels at the throat and the heart are round. Top
and bottom triangular outside, the middle two circular.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 12 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

The letter is facing towards oneself and not away. Make sure that your not looking at the letter
from the outside, but that your subtle mind and wind have entered into the letters, because the
aim of this practice is to bring the winds into the central channel.

You have the choice between the Sanskrit and Tibetan letters, so it should be acceptable to
visualize the English letter. On the other hand there are particular blessings from meditating on
the Tibetan letters since so many masters have meditated this way and achieved realizations.

If you meditate on the English letter form, you should add the crescent, circle and squiggle. The
tigle is associated with the mind of appearance, near appearance, and attainment. Earth
dissolving into water, water into fire, fire into air, and then consciousness into appearance. As
the first curve of the tigle gradually disappears you have the mind of white appearance. When
the second starts to disappear upwards, you have the mind of red increase. The last part of the
curve is the mind of near attainment (black).

Depending upon the letter you are meditating on. In the case of the HUM you have the shakya
dissolving into the to circle, then into the squiggle, then the three appearances. With PAM when
the bottom part dissolves into the head you have earth dissolving into water. Then head into
crescent moon - water into fire; then crescent into circle, fire into water; water into air, and then
crescent three appearances of near attainment.

Q: What's the difference between death dissolution and tummo?

In general, when you mediate on the inner heat, then the fire of the inner heat blazes and due to
this, the HUM at the heart becomes more blissful, on the verge of dripping. And then as the heat
rises, it causes the OM at the heart to be hotter, and the HAM at the crown starts to drip. When
that drip gets as far as the navel chakra, the heat becomes even hotter and one experiences a
very special bliss, and through this acting as a condition the airs begin to dissolve. The air of the
earth element dissolves, then the air of the water element, then the air of the fire element, and
the air of the air element dissolves. You go through the appearance, red increase, black near
attainment, and finally the clear light mind manifests. You achieve this through the force of
meditation, through making the bodhicitta melt, through which the airs dissolve and through
which you finally get the clear light mind manifesting. Together with this you meditate on the four
joys. When the drop goes from the crown to the throat, joy, throat to heart, supreme joy, so forth
to the fourth joy of simultaneous bliss. At the end of the dissolution of last joy you get the clear
light mind manifesting without any effort.

In the tummo you use the force of your mind to get to the clear light mind - at the time of waking
rather than death. Whereas when the clear light mind occurs naturally like at the time of death
you can't be sure that mind could meditate on emptiness.

Q: Are the width of the petals the same as the central channel?

The central channel is the thickness of a straw. The channels that proliferate from the central
channel are thinner than the central channels, and get thinner as they divide further. The
channels actually pervade the whole body. As to length you can get the idea from the drawings.

Q: Why visualize the mind in the aspect of a letter?

The point of meditating on the very subtle mind in the form of letters is one of the skillful means.
The whole point of tantra is skillful means for achieving one's goals. Like visualizing bodhicitta

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 13 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

as a moon disk at one's heart. It's easier for the mind to get an idea, to appear to the mind in
that form. It's easier for us to do. So in the case of seeing the very subtle mind in the form of
HAM at the crown, radiating five colored lights, that HAM is the basis upon which you can
achieve the five Dhyani Buddhas. That function is visualized in the form of radiating the five
different colored lights. Again, it's all a question of being easier for the mind to think of it in that

Q: Do the channels coming out from the central channel penetrate the side channels?

Where the right and left channels loop around the central channel, the eight channels of the
heart chakra would go between them and not through them.

Q: What's the difference between the four blisses and the four emptinesses?

As far as the four empties and the four joys are concerned, some people naturally find it easier
to experience the bliss. And the first empty would come later. For some it's easier to make the
airs dissolve. They'd get the first empty and the bliss would come later.

7:30 Lorne
[get recording of meditation*]

Explore the Chakras looking from the inside. Like you are exploring a new house you are going
to buy.
When exploring the chakras you go half in and half out at the third eye. You are the white/red
drop emanating five colored light.
Concentrate 2/3 at the navel and 1/9 at the other three.
It's good to have the hand mudra in the thumbs touching position for tummo meditation because
it means tummo!

Sunday 12/4
7:30am Ven. Rene
[refuge and six session *good session to review and transcribe. On the bus!]

When you take refuge there are three possible Buddhas:

1. The historical Buddha. Buddha who has passed away.

2. The Buddhas in pure lands who send emanations to the three times (Mahayana). You invite
from the pure lands.
3. The Buddha that is everywhere in everything (Vajrayana). He has always been there and
always be there, you make manifest to your mind by giving it form.

Which do you take refuge in? All three perceptions are valid.

10am Khensur Rinpoche

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 14 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

In the mother tantra the main deities are Hevadra and Chakrasamvara. The prior Kagyu
tradition would mainly practice tummo with these. One of the attributes of the Vajrayogini
practice is that inner heat develops naturally through practicing Vajrayogini.


We have reached the third section that describes visualizing the letters. Here, we said that
according to the Three Convictions, the central channel is blue in color. When you are
meditating on the inner heat your should visualize it as red, the kind of red that comes from
burning oil. Like when you make a butter lamp.

We have already covered the topic of visualizing the channels. When you are visualizing the
channels you need to reach a point where you have the clear appearance. This means first
having a clear appearance of first of the central channel, then the channel on the right, and the
channel on the left. You need to visualize them clearly again and again and once they have
become clear to you they say you have elicited the clear appearance. Look as if you are inside
the channels looking out, and not from outside in.

Specifically, you need to have the mind inside the central channel, looking from that
perspective. This is in order to facilitate bringing the airs inside the central channel. When the
airs are coursing through the right and left channels, which is what they do at the moment, this
increases the superstitious minds, the mental afflictions. The airs which go through the right and
left channels serve as the mount for the superstitious mind. Bringing the airs through the central
channel is the whole point: to stop the airs going through the right and left channels and go into
the central channel. So, put the mind there - where the mind goes the airs go - whereas if you
visualize that you are looking from outside, that's where the airs will go. That encourages the
airs to go outside the central channel. Visualizing looking from the inside out helps with the
process of making the airs enter, abide, and dissolve into the central channel. The practice of
tummo, inner heat, is the practice to get the airs inside the central channel.

Likewise, before we were talking about training in the paths of the channels. You were
meditating on your mind being in the aspect of the drop and moving up and down the channels,
looking around the chakras, their shape, and so forth. The purpose is the same. Focusing the
mind inside the central channel brings the airs inside the central channel.

Je Rinpoche in the Three Convictions talks about the knots formed by the right and left channels
around the central channel. When you're meditating on the navel chakra with the sixty four
spokes, the knot formed by the right and left channel there, one should again and again check
them, how they look, what shape they are, and in this way get a clear appearance of those three
channels. And where you're checking the appearance of the channels, the sixty four, you're
looking again and again to see the number, shape, and so forth, until you get a clear
appearance of the chakras. Again, don't think that you're checking it from the outside; think that
you're checking it from within.

And when we are visualizing the letters, for example when visualizing the HAM letter at the
crown of your head, again the way to visualize it is not from outside, but by making your mind
actually enter into the HAM letter, and look from that perspective.

Then, when you are holding your mind on those letters at the heart, throat and crown, you
should only hold your mind there for a short period, such as, for example, five minutes on each
letter in a session. And spend more time with your mind absorbed into the tummo letter shape.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 15 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

The reason for this is that if you spend too much time on the letters inside the central channel at
the heart, throat, and crown, it can lead to some kind of air disease, discomfort. So you only
spend a little bit of time on those, and more time on the letter inside the navel. Again, your mind
absorbs into the letter and is inseparable from the letter.

And so when it appears to oneself that one's mind is mixed with the letter, it means the
meditation is going well. Keep doing your meditation until you get the experience of the mind
and letter being mixed.


Having completed that third section on visualizing the letters, we do the fourth section on
igniting the fire of tummo, which we normally call inner heat.

Before igniting this tummo fire, one needs to have some kind of level of stability with the
meditation on the ATUNG/ASHAY, the short AH at the navel. If you haven't already achieved
calm abiding, then at this point you can use this letter as your object of meditation. You need to
work on stability with that meditation. If you're able to remain for 1/6 of a day/night period, for
four hours, if you're able to keep your mind on it for that period, you're said to have achieved
stability with your meditation object, the short AH. Then you can go on to igniting the fire.
Otherwise continue cultivating calm abiding until you can do so for four hours.

When you are trying to accomplish stability of the mind on the short letter AH at the navel, you
think how it's color is red, hot, about to start blazing, and stay on it as long as you can. But at
the beginning you need to keep your time on the object short, because what's most important is
the quality. Should you feel sleepy or bored, you should stop the meditation and create the
intention to meditate again, better, without sinking, mental exciting, or distraction. You want to
tailor the duration of the meditation so you can have good quality meditation free from
distraction and excitation. When you've finished that short meditation period think whether it
went well or not. If it didn't go so well, think how you can remedy that. There are remedies for
overcoming dysfunctional factors. One remedy is to breathe out the obstacles and problems,
and breath in light.

Start with short periods of meditation and gradually make them longer and longer in order to
preserve and increase the quality of your meditation.

Also, in order to enhance the stability of the meditation on the ASHAY, then one should, before
stopping the session, meditate on nonconceptuality. You're not thinking about the heat, the
drop, the squiggle, the letter. Without thinking of anything keep your mind in that state, and that
helps to increase the duration with which you can keep your mind on the object.

This is all in the context of gaining stability with the short letter AH. If you're going to do what we
call shar-gom, a glance meditation, you can simply meditate on the hollow body, visualize the
three channels, the four chakras, the letters, and gradually do the blazing, the dripping, the
simple form, and so forth, all in one session. Like a glance meditation on the Lam Rim.
Alternatively, you can do one session on each point. Here also you could do one session that
includes all seven, then gradually try to get experience with each of them one by one.

We are now on this fourth point of making the fire. In one of the translations it says igniting the
fire. Getting the fire going. How you do this, the object your mind is focused on is this ASHAY,
the short AH. It's very hot, radiating light, clear, about to burst into flames. It's very hot. You

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 16 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

breathe gently in to your two nostrils and think that the air is going in through the two side
channels, and then it goes down to where the right and left channels are inserted into the
central channel. Inside the central channel, at the center of the navel chakra, on a moon
cushion, you have this letter, the ASHAY, and you should think that the air blows on, literally
strikes that letter. This is just like when you direct the air from a bellows onto the coal, it glows.
It's already been lit, but it glows red. Those airs are like the airs from a bellows making the short
AH glow red because it's become much hotter from the air hitting it. This you go through about
seven times.

With this fourth stage, igniting the tummo fire, at this point through this practice the short AH is
glowing red, but there's no flame, it is just much hotter than before.

When you're doing this one, making the fire, without the fire actually having started, just glowing
red, with subtle beginning of flame coming off of it.

As for the blazing of the short AH, now again, you breathe in a long slow breath, and again the
airs go up through the two nostrils following the right and left channels. They go all the way
down and then up into the central channel like incense smoke. Then the fire is actually ignited, a
small flame two fingers in length at the tip of the AH.

This is something we can do several times. Pabonga Dezhingbapo's instructions, written down
by Trijang Rinpoche, says to do this seven time. The previous step you also do seven times,
and then the igniting seven times.

So that flame you can think of being two fingers high or four.

These two practices of igniting the tummo fire and causing the tummo fire to blaze, you can do
those with your mental consciousness, that is, without bringing the airs into the right and left
channels to the navel. Instead you can do it with your mind and imagine that you are bringing
together the airs of the upper part of the body and the lower part of the body, gathering them
with the mind and making them absorb into the short AH. The airs of the upper body are called
the life holding wind, and the lower part refers to the downward voiding wind, which performs a
function normally of, for example, allowing us to defecate and hold the filth from going out. Or
holds and releases the urine. With the mental consciousness you absorb those airs into the
short AH.

In both cases, whether we are doing this practice via bringing the airs into the left and right
channels or within the mind, still the mind should be focused on the short AH.

We have the sixth one now which is the simple blazing and dripping. Once you have some kind
of stability with the meditation on igniting the tummo fire, you would move on to the next one,
causing the tummo fire to blaze. And once you achieve some level of stability with that, you'd
move on to the next one, the simple blazing and dripping. In the case of a glance meditation
you'd do a little bit of each and move on. Otherwise you'd develop stability in a session with
each before moving on.

With the igniting and blazing we talked about doing that seven times. And also remember to do
some time in nonconceptual contemplation.


Six Yogas of Naropa Page 17 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

Q: how much visualization is involved with the mental approach with the winds coming down
and up?

The bulk of your mind remains focused on the meditation object, while another part is focused
on bringing the airs together. Just like when walking on a path - the main part of your mind is
focused on the path, and part of your awareness is looking out for a precipice or other danger.

Q: If I have not achieved calm abiding or stability of meditating on the ATUNG object, are there
harms to proceeding forward anyway?

First of all, there's no harm in moving from the first to second, to third step, there's no harm,
because you create the imprints. The idea of insisting on creating stability with the earlier steps,
is that, when you move on to the next step it's going to be easier to get the experience of that.
Otherwise, there are great benefits in moving forward with the steps despite less familiarity,
because you get to the point that you get the feeling you could get this realization, this
experience. So doing this practice on the basis of calm abiding is not easy. On the other hand,
by doing these practices you get the imprints which have limitless benefits. Imprints to, for
example, meet these practices again in the future.

This inner heat, tummo meditation is really important. The lamas of the past used to say how
important it is. So definitely we should not simply drop it because we think we're not getting any
benefit. Because we should at least get the imprints to experience in the future.

Q: What does the nonconceptual meditation mean?

The idea is that when you say meditate without conceptualizing, you keep your mind on the
object but you don't analyze it any more. What it's talking about in nonconceptualizing or not
thinking, it's not thinking about anything at all. The nonconceptualizing you should do at this
point is different from the blissful, clear, nonconceptualizing meditation. Different from
bliss/pliancy; clarity free from sinking/excitation; clarity, not drifting from the object. Here you
leave off analyzing the aspects of the letter (shape, color, etc.) instead you are keeping your
mind on the object without thinking about it.

Q: When thinking about the fire should we stay aware of the channels and chakras?

No. just think about the tummo itself.

Q: When we inhale the air into the side channels to ignite the fire, when do we exhale?

If you're doing this meditation on the basis of the vase breathing, then you would form the vase
with the upper airs coming down and the lower airs coming up, forming the vase with the
ATUNG within. In that case you would hold the breath as long as you can. Here, if you're not
doing it with the vase breathing, you'd breath in, cause the tummo fire to blaze, and then
continue breathing as normal.

Q: In another practice they talk about the red coming down and the white coming up?

In the Vajrayogini self generation you have this completion stage meditation. But you wouldn't
have a red bliss wheel coming down and a white coming up in the completion stage, it should
be the opposite. But in the self generation it is the opposite - red from above, white from below.
Though you mainly have white bodhicitta at the crown and red below, there is a little of the

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 18 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

others there too. We understand this from the four joys, with the bodhicitta coming down from
the crown, and experiencing the four joys. The substances descending have sixteen paths with
white bodhicitta and twelve red, in each of the four joys.

Q: Where to do six yogas in Heruka practice?

With the Heruka practice, towards the end of the practice when you are done with self
generation. Then you do disillusion and then instantaneous generation with one face and two
arms, then do it at that point.

Q: Injuries manifest first in the subtle body and then gross body. Will surgeries in the areas of
the chakras affect your practice?

Even if the gross body is harmed, the subtle body wouldn't be harmed. The subtle body is in the
nature of light.

Q: When exhaling after tummo igniting does the excess air go up the central channel and out
through the crown of the head?

When you are doing the completion stage practice you bring the air in through the right and left
channels. But in completion stage you shouldn't think that they go out again.

2pm Lorne
Central channel is in front of the spine

3:30pm Rinpoche

The sixth point is the simple blazing and dripping and then the seventh is the special blazing
and dripping.

In the text it talks about the fire blazing from the tip of the nada, the object that you are focusing
on, the short AH at the navel. That short AH has the crescent moon above it, and above that
there's the circle and the nada squiggle. The fire will be coming from the tip of that nada. A fire
will come up from there just like lightning. It will come to the HUM at the heart and it circles the
HUM at the heart three times clockwise.

You take a long breath in, taking in the airs through the right and left channels, keeping the mind
on the short AH. The airs are directed to the short AH like a blacksmith blows air onto coals with
a bellows. Three times. And then, through that process the fire will blaze.

Then the flame carries on up through the central channel to the OM at the throat and circles it
three times. Through that the OM, that was already hot and ready to ignite, becomes hotter and
heat increases there. Through there the heat carries up through the central channel to the HAM
at the crown chakra, and this causes the HAM to drip.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 19 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

The fire goes up to the crown where there is the HAM and causes the white bodhicitta of the
HAM to melt, and then it drips and it's just like the thread of a spider's web going down. And
when it reaches the OM at the throat the bliss and heat of the OM become much greater. There
is an experience of a very special bliss and heat at that point.

Then this nectar - like a thread from a spider - carries on dripping down and it touches, drips,
onto the heart. All four letters are blissful in nature. When the drip reaches the OM the bliss
becomes greater than before, you experiences a special bliss and heat. Two in particular, the
OM and the short AH, their nature is heat. When the nectar reaches the OM both the heat and
the bliss become much greater than before. When it reaches the HUM at the heart that blissful
nature becomes much stronger than before. So you have what is described as an exceptional

And then that nectar, the white bodhicitta like a spider's thread that has come from the crown of
one's head proceeds down from the HUM at the heart to the ATUNG, the short AH at the navel.
And the heat of the bliss of the short AH becomes much much greater than before, far superior
than before.

You keep your mind focused on the ATUNG and you can do this meditation with the vase
breath again and again.

As for the vase breathing, there seem to be two types. One type has four attributes, and this is
not actually taught in the tantras, it was taught by the previous lamas as a technique for quickly
causing the fire of tummo to raise. In a tantra called Dong Drun, there the vase meditation -
creating the vase by mental consciousness - is taught.

The first way, not taught through the tantras, is taught through the breath. To do it that way,
breath in gently, swallow some saliva, and as you are doing that you are pressing the upper airs
down to just above the ATUNG. And then you bring the downward voiding air upwards, and you
slightly close the lower doors (the anus and urethra), slightly so that they come together,
forming a capsule. And then they dissolve into the short AH, the ATUNG. Because it's in the
nature of fire/heat, the heat becomes stronger and stronger, the fire blazes, and it causes the
dripping to take place, so you do that as many times as you can.

The four features:

1. Mupta - breathing, air coming into the right and left channels
2. Kangta - fill, by breathing in the right and left channels filled with air
3. Shilata - those airs enter into the central channel
4. Sending the air out again - If you are able to hold it, you hold it there until uncomfortable, but
in terms of meditation think that the air remains there, absorbed into the short AH. If not, you
carry on breathing in and out.

When you're meditating on the vase, what it says in the tantra is that you should press the palm
of the hand five times and snap the finger six times. The previous lamas have come up with the
technique I was just demonstrating. With the right hand you touch your right knee, left knee,
snap the fingers. Do that six times. Holding your breath for that amount of time is called the
vase air. There are some also that instead have your right palm smooth the left, then your left
on top, then right, like washing your hands three times. Then snap. If it becomes uncomfortable
though, immediately let the breath go.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 20 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

This is an exercise you would do when training in exercising yourself in vase breathing.
Otherwise when you're doing this meditation you wouldn't do that kind of exercise because it
would disturb the focus of your meditation - the sequence would occur naturally.

That's the simple blazing and dripping, the sixth one.

The vase should be formed at the navel when you are beginning with the practice. Once you
become practiced and proficient, you can form the vase at the heart and the other chakras and
it wouldn't do any harm.

Once your mind has become stable in that meditation, the fire becomes a little thicker than
before. With the simple blazing and dripping, the flame was quite fine, like a needle. Now, when
you're doing the next meditation, then that flame becomes thicker or wider.

Through the force of that flame having become thicker, you think that the light of the fire makes
all sixty-four of the navel channels very clear. And when it reaches the heart that light makes the
eight channels of the heart chakra very clear, and so on for all four of the chakras. When you're
well practiced in it, you can see all of the 72,000 channels of the body very clearly.

Here we're still talking about the simple blazing and dripping. Through practicing, the flame
becomes bigger, and the light of the flame is able to make all the channels of all the four
chakras very clear.

Also, through doing this meditation what can happen is that you're able to see things normally
hidden to you. Like being able to predict what's going to happen in the future. But this is not the
case of having developed clairvoyant powers. Rather it's happening just through having
meditated so much on the light from that fire making everything very clear to you.


For the seventh one you are breathing in from the nostrils, the air striking the ATUNG, the flame
then spreads throughout the whole body and pervades all the pores of the body. The fire comes
out also from the place where the third eye is, and out through the right nostril and pervades
everywhere there are sentient beings, strikes all of them and purifies their negativities and
obscurations, and then to all enlightened beings and bodhisattvas and makes offerings to them.


Q: Are the top and bottom chakras channels in more of a pyramid shape with straight channels,
or curved like an umbrella?

It's not described that way in the text.

Q: Would the special blazing and dripping happen automatically as you do the earlier practice
better and better?

With the simple blazing and dripping, the light of the fire fills all of the channels. And then with
the special blazing and dripping it fills up the whole of the body, and then the fire comes out
through the right nostril and the center of the forehead and enters into all sentient beings,
burning up all their negativities and obscurations and making them enlightened. And then to all
of the Buddhas, heroes of the 24 places, and dakinis of the 24 places, making offerings to them.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 21 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

The fire enters through their left nostril and when it reaches the HAM at their crown chakra the
HAM melts and the nectar - the bodhicitta - reaches the throat where the OM becomes
exceptionally blissful and warm. And then it goes down to the heart and there is an exceptional
experience of bliss as it gets to the HUM at the center of the heart chakra, and then when it
reaches the short AH at their navel the bliss and heat become exceptionally strong. This is the
offering you are making to them.

Then that energy leaves them as white light through their right nostril back to your left nostril
and forehead aperture and you experience the four kinds of bliss. When it gets to the navel then
you experience inconceivable bliss as a result of that. So when we talk about receiving the
blessings of the Buddha's, heroes, and dakinis of the 24 places that's the blessing you receive.
["oh wow!" from someone in the audience].

Imagining or meditating through use of the imagination in this way is something that we must do
repeatedly because this is a profound method which results in being guided in the future by all
of the Buddhas and bodhisattvas.

When you're doing the simple blazing and dripping you do this seven times, and the special
blazing seven times, that means you are doing this again and again and is the cause of being
guided by them again and again in the future.

This completes those seven meditations. You can do all seven meditations each day, or you
can spend a day on each. If you do them each day, meditate on the hollow body, visualize the
channels, and so forth. As far as the meditation posture, there's one mentioned in LTK's Three
Convictions. He doesn't give you a choice. It's a way of sitting which would require using a
meditation belt. Although he doesn't mention an alternative, in other texts it says you can also
sit with the seven points of Vairochana posture with legs in the vajra posture and so forth.

You would start off with the nine round meditation for dispelling the bad airs. Then you would
meditate on the hollow body. There are six physical exercises which are not essential. You have
a choice. These exercises bring about flexibility in the body. This would mean thinking that the
channels are in good shape, not twisted or crooked and so forth.

If you're going to spend a day on each practice, spend one day meditating on the hollow body.
Then spend one day focusing on the three channels and the four chakras. And then one day
training in the pathways of the channels. Then one day visualizing the letters. Then one day on
igniting the fire of inner heat. Then one day on blazing the fire of inner heat. It's good to do
these because then you get good at the meditation.

Something mentioned in the Three Convictions when you're doing the special blazing, is that
the fire from the short AH completely pervading the whole body, it brings about a revitalization of
the three chakras - heart, crown, and throat. Likewise the five aggregates: form, feeling,
discernment, compositional factors, and consciousness. Likewise the four elements: earth,
water, fire, and air. At the moment it's like when you're old - you're very creaky and inflexible. It's
like when you put a flower in a vase and there's no water, it becomes all kind of limp. Then
when you add water it revitalizes it. That's the effect it has.

After that you have the fire going out through the right nostril into the left nostril of all the
Buddhas, heroes, dakinis, and the blessings come back through one's left nostril and so forth.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 22 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

These seven meditations are not specifically mentioned in the Three Convictions. Where they
come from is a commentary to the Three Convictions by one of the disciple's disciples. It's good
to read those commentaries as well.

This completes the explanation of how to meditate on tummo. Tum means fierce. When
someone is fierce they are capable of overcoming their enemies. Mo means the feminine form.
Like calling it the fierce woman or lady, because of the fact that it generates the wisdom of
nondual bliss and emptiness. Through depending on a female partner the male practitioner
would be able to generate the same wisdom of bliss and emptiness. Tummo generates bliss
and emptiness in the same way, so we refer to it as female. We say tum mo me. Me is like a fire
that can burn up all the impurities of the five aggregates and four elements.

The short term purpose that's served by meditating on this, what will follow if you've meditated
on this well, is that, at the moment we have many illnesses due to the heat in the body being
weak. When there's sufficient heat in the body, the good part of the food, the nutritious part, can
be absorbed and used, and it improves the blood and the drops and so forth. And the body's
able to eliminate the non-useful parts of food. When the heat isn't operating right, the body can't
separate the two and this leads to various wind and bile illnesses. The temporary benefit is
increasing the heat properly to make one more healthy.


Q: Where to incorporate in Tara Cittamani practice?

In the extensive practice you gather up the deities of the body mandala, generate yourself in the
form of Tara with one face and two arms and you can do the hollow body and so forth. For the
short Cittamani Tara practice you wouldn't have the body mandala, so you can do it after the
mantra recitation.

Q: With respect to the Three Purifications?

After you've recited all the armor mantras. When it comes to the point of training the channels,
the movement of the drop, then it doesn't matter that the mother is there, you would see your
own body as Heruka very clearly, the mother also. You would focus on training the channels of
the main deity. Likewise with Heruka.

Q: Is there a point where the tummo is blazing automatically?

You can reach a point where the bliss and the heat remain constantly. In the case of the Jain
practitioners, they generate the tummo heat, naked in the snow, and they keep warm by doing
this meditation. If they didn't they would freeze and die. Like in the case of this one movie I saw
on YouTube, it showed these two people playing naked in the snow, and one had frozen and

Q: What are the six exercises you mentioned?

Turning the body like a wheel, hooking like a hook, retching like a dog, straightening like an
arrow, etc. there are six of them. There's a video with Thubten Pende demonstrating them.

Q: What's the significance of the shape of channels and number of channel branches?

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 23 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

In fact there are many more channels than those enumerated. Nevertheless there is a purpose -
it's more convenient for meditation. It's easier to meditate in that way. The channels which are
triangular on the outside and circular on the inside - that symbolizes a combination of method
and wisdom. The pair of syllables evam - e is triangular and represents wisdom of bliss and
emptiness, and the vam has a kind of round shape and is symbolic of method.

Q: What is the benefit of the meditation belt and in what position do you use it?

It goes around your waist and raises the knees up. The purpose is to hold/bless the 24 channels
of the 24 places.

7:30 Lorne
[**tummo practice, igniting ATUNG. Excellent to listen to and transcribe]

Rinpoche would teach this topic only at Sera Mey, and it would only be to the Lharampa
Geshes. Very rare.

These points are covered in LTK's text. LTK himself doesn't systematize it in terms of seven
steps. Changya Rolpo Dorje's student Naksang Tulku systematized it, and his consort Kangsar
Dorje Chang. Rinpoche's advice is to use those seven steps.

If you're using those seven points you can look back on LTK's text to give it structure.


Q: When we visualize ourselves as our deity, that deity is standing up - should we sit down in
meditation posture like our real body is sitting?

Stay in the posture of the deity.

Q: When the air goes into the central channel, heats up and ignites the fire, at the end of the
nada is where the flame blazes. Do you mix your mind with the rising fire? And then mix into the
HUM, and the bodhicitta?

Your mind follows the flame, mixed.

As the mind stays at the heart around the HUM as a blaze, it's drawing more bodhicitta into the
HUM at the heart.
The idea is to have more and more white and red bodhicitta mixing together.
When the bodhicitta comes down and it hits the ATUNG, it's like fat hitting the fire. Rising and
descending within each other. Or like when you pour the butter into the fire.

Q: What does bodhicitta mean in this context? White and red.

The white and the red - the source of the white bodhicitta is the white substance from the father,
the semen. And the red is the blood and the egg from the mother. The energy of those two
substances from mother and father remain in our body. At your heart chakra is the mixture in

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 24 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

the drop. Part of the function of the red is to give rise to heat, and part of the white is to give rise
to bliss. Part of what we are doing is to combine the two. The term bodhicitta here refers to
these substances that give rise to bliss.

Q: At the throat does the OM give rise to heat?


Q: Timing of the melting drop?

Stay longer at the navel than others.

Q: Where is the naval chakra?

Same height as belly button.

Q: What's the offering to the Buddhas?

The red bodhicitta itself coming out as energy.

Q: There's a lot of method and technique here. That can reinforce duality. Keep nonduality in

Agreed. Right now we're gaining the wisdom from hearing. We're still processing. From these
meditations, we'll eventually gain the wisdom of experiencing.

Q: What is the wisdom part of tummo?

This is a completion stage practice. But we're not on the completion stage. The point where a
person enters the completion stage is when they can cause the subtle airs to enter, abide, and
dissolve in the central channel. This practice of tummo is mainly focused on achieving that at
the navel chakra. There are several advantages: It's safer there, it has fewer knots, is easier,
and tummo is generated there.

If one can succeed through this intense experience of heat and bliss inside the navel chakra,
there comes a point when the winds first enter the central channel at the navel chakra, and if
one continues to meditate they gradually abide there and dissolve. At that point of the
generation stage you're doing that through imagination. That's to prepare for the moment of
completion stage practice when it really happens at the navel. When all those absorptions
happen, and one experiences the wisdom of great bliss, at that time through the absorption one
has a completion stage experience. If one continues to practice like that it takes one to the
speech level of completion stage.

Monday, December 5
7:30am Rene
An ordinary person has two senses of I: the conventional I when one is relaxed, with no strong
emotion; and the inherently existing I, when there is strong emotion and intent thinking. The
inherently existing I is the one to be refuted.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 25 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

The third I is the one yogis see, merely imputed upon the body mind, or just the mind.

A Buddha only has the conventional I and the merely imputed I.

In meditation try and find this I, merely imputed upon the five aggregates or just the mind; yet
we exist.

10am Rinpoche
As for how the tummo fire blazes, in the beginning one would meditate on the tummo fire
blazing within the central channel at the level of the navel, and through the force of the
meditation the fire would also blaze at the secret place. Meditating at the tummo fire blazing
outside of the central channel is referred to as the ordinary tummo fire blazing. The tummo
blazing outside of the central channel, like between the flesh and the skin; like when ordinary
people have sex they have the substances melt, and due to this they experience a blissful
feeling. That's called the ordinary blazing of tummo. Whereas the tummo fire that blazes inside
the central channel is referred to as the supreme one, the best.

The reason why the tummo fire that blazes outside the central channel is called the ordinary one
is because this causes attachment to increase - desirous attachment. It does lead to an
experience of bliss, but that causes the attachment to increase. Whereas when the fire blazes
within the central channel there is also an experience of bliss, but one that doesn't make
attachment/desire increase.

As for the increasing of the heat, between the two - the heat being produced in the beginning
from within the body, vs. the heat being experienced where the flesh and the skin meet - the
best is when the heat is coming from within. When the heat is coming from between the flesh
and the skin, that's not the supreme one, it's the ordinary one. In the case of the heat coming
from the within, the heat is less extensive, but from the flesh and the skin, it is more extensive.
Thus, when you are meditating on tummo and you start to sweat it's the sign that the tummo
isn't working properly. The best is when you have the heat within. When the heat is coming
outside it means the tummo meditation is not working properly.

What it states in the Three Convictions is that when the heat doesn't develop quickly, when it
comes with some difficulty or slowly, then that's better. When the fire blazes very quickly that's
considered inferior.

Then in the case of the expression of the heat being "thick" it means it lasts long and doesn't
easily disappear. There's a thin or flimsy kind of heat which is inferior, while the former is

When you are meditating on the heat of the fire of tummo, which is like extraordinary heat, that
heat will cause the bodhicitta to melt, and it also causes the experience of bliss, but it doesn't
lead to any kind of illness from having the elements out of balance. This kind of special heat of
the inner fire - extraordinary heat - doesn't lead to that kind of illness from the elements being
out of balance. Whereas in the ordinary heat it can lead to that kind of imbalance.

Also what can happen in the case of ordinary inner fire, you can experience a lot of heat which
can cause an increase of lust, it can also cause discomfort.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 26 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

To avoid this, the main thing is that you need to have the focal object within the central channel
and you need to keep the mind on that by making the mind inseparable from the object,
absorbing into the object. If the mind is outside, the mind won't be in the central channel, the
airs won't be in the central channel, and the heat will be experienced between the flesh and the
skin as an ordinary heat leading to lust increasing and various illnesses.

The ordinary heat can also come with physical exercises, and this is not useful. For example, it
can make you feel hot and produce physical illnesses. Ordinary heat can come from not doing
the tummo meditation properly, or from doing the physical exercises.

Also, it's explained here that even without doing the vase breathing with the four attributes,
simply through one's meditation you could imagine that light radiates through the ASHAY, and
that light hooks all of the airs from the upper part of the body and the lower part of the body and
dissolve into the short AH. If you do that again and again it will serve the same purpose.

I've completed a rough explanation of how to meditate on tummo.


Q: I've noticed, being a woman, there's a certain heat that will arise and generally starts down in
the lower part of the body, comes as an energy that spreads up and all over.

That's the ordinary kind of tummo. Even if it's coming from lower, if it's not inside the central
channel that kind of heat is the ordinary heat. Any kind of heat originating from outside is called
the ordinary heat.

Q: Hindus talk about kundalini. What kind of heat is that?

The Hindu practitioners do have the meditations on the channels, that's for sure. It's actually
quite difficult to differentiate between Buddhist and non-Buddhist. It's generally just whether you
have refuge. Whether you have bodhicitta, the motivation. But in terms of the meditation there
may be some differences but in general they have the understanding of the central channel, etc.
whether they can absorb the airs to enter, abide, and dissolve into the channels is debatable.
There isn't a difference in terms of the basis: the same channels, airs, and drops. Otherwise,
lama Atisha and others have remarked that it is difficult to distinguish the difference. But
basically we don't know how they do their meditation, do we?

Q: Is the moon cushion flat or the shape of a pea?

Really, talking about half a pea is just to give you an idea of the size. But it's flat.

Q: Is there a certain point at the meditation if you haven't realized emptiness that you do? The
inferential cognizer?

When you're doing the tummo meditation you're focusing on the letters, the ASHAY, the short
AH. If you were meditating on emptiness it would take your mind from the letter. If you try to
meditate on emptiness you won't be able to focus on the inner heat.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 27 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

Q: Is there a harm or use of the heat generated from doing prostrations?

When you are doing prostrations and it makes your body warm, this is coming from the fire
element in your body. It's not something you need to go out of your way to stop. If you keep
going you purify your negativities and obscurations. And then it wouldn't cause you physical
discomfort and sweating!

Q: Where is the navel chakra?

The navel chakra is at the level of the navel. The central channel goes about four fingers below

Q: When I get heat and light spontaneously and I can't see, starting in the head. As if I'm literally
going to burn up. How to manage?

Go to the doctor!

Q: The accomplishment of tummo makes the body impervious to the cold in Tibet, but also to
heat? Underwater?

There are different tummo meditations you can do. Of course you can remain comfortable
because of the heat you are producing, even when in a very cold place like a snowy mountain.
You can remain comfortable in a hot place. You can walk without touching the ground, be
comfortable underwater, etc.

Q: In the tummo bliss, don't we go on to the dissolution of elements?

This process of the four elements dissolving. At that point the fire that's blazing is the special
fire. You're at the stage of the clear light. Then within the central channel, while you're within
that mind of clear light, you experience in sequence the four joys of the substances descending
from the crown to throat and so forth.

Depending upon the exceptional blazing and dripping you can achieve the ability to go through
the dissolutions. The purpose of doing tummo meditation is to experience the four joys. Ordinary
blazing and dripping and special blazing and dripping, it's the equivalent of isolation of mind in
mother tantra: clear light, special fire of inner heat blazes, experience of four joys.


That completes the explanation for the inner heat from the Six Yogas of Naropa. Next we look at
the illusory body: the illusory body of appearance, dream, and intermediate state.


During meditation you generate meditative equipoise, mediate on emptiness, have the exalted
wisdom of bliss and emptiness. Then when you come out of meditation, everything will still
appear - the various conventional appearances will all appear to be truly existent. From tummo
meditation you experience the four joys, bliss, and recollect emptiness. Then when you come
out of meditation things appear truly existent. Yet even though things appear truly existent,

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 28 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

things don't exist in the way they appear, just like an illusion. Like the case of an actual illusion -
of a horse, an elephant, etc. - but you realize there is actually no horse or elephant there.
Things appear truly existent but you know they are not truly existent. Like illusions.

In fact, this is something that you don't need to do as a separate meditation, it will come
naturally. You realize emptiness in the meditation and then when things appear truly existent
outside of meditation you realize they are illusion-like. Who knows that the illusion is not real?
That would be the magician. At the moment, how things are for us, we are like the person
attending the show who has been affected by the spell. There is the appearance of the horse
and elephant to be real. We wouldn't know there aren't real ones there. We don't know things
don't exist in the way they appear. Within the meditation, realize emptiness, then when you
come out, you realize that though things seem to be truly existent, they aren't: appearance is an

For us, how things appear is that everything appears as if it is truly existent. We don't realize
that they don't exist truly in the way they appear. That things exist like illusions. Whereas, when
you realize emptiness you realize that things don't exist in the way they appear - they are like
illusions. The way things appear to exist is from their own side, not depending upon anything
else. Because of believing that appearance - not having realized emptiness - depending on that,
attachment and anger arise. Anger arises upon dependence upon someone being an enemy
from their own side, attachment arises upon dependence upon someone being an attractive
object from its own side.

With the view of emptiness you realize that the friend and enemy are made up by the mind. In
actual fact, the person who appears to be the enemy depends upon many conditions, even
though he appears independent. He is created by the mind, depends on conditions, and doesn't
exist truly as he appears. The way the enemy appears is existing from his own side, but he is
made by the mind. When you understand that, anger won't arise. Likewise for attachment. This
is all about understanding appearances being like illusions.

The enemy is not truly existent. It's because this person did something wrong that we see them
as an enemy. If the person does something we like we see them as a friend. In both cases they
are created by the mind. The person who is an enemy, by some very small condition, can
become a friend. And likewise a friend can become an enemy by some small condition. If they
were truly friend and enemy they could not change from one to the other. Also, two people can
have a different way of looking at the same person: as a good friend or a strong enemy. This
would be impossible if the friend and enemy were truly such.

Likewise, being wealthy is not truly existent. Through a small change the wealthy person can
become poor. And likewise a small thing can change and the poor person becomes rich.

It's like when you're asleep, something can happen that makes you feel very afraid. But you
wake up and realize you don't need to be afraid any more, and you feel quite happy. Realizing
emptiness is like that. There's the appearance of something when you sleep and you suffer,
then when you wake up you realize it isn't real and you become happy. During our lives all kinds
of things are happening: some that cause suffering and some that cause pleasure. All of these
come about from believing that things are truly existent.

For us, when something happens that harms us, like losing a lot of money, that causes a very
big problem for us. Whereas from the view of emptiness that is not a real problem. Believing the

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 29 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

wealth is real is what causes the problem. For the person with the view of emptiness the
appearance of wealth isn't convincing. To the person who's realized emptiness, when they have
money they aren't particularly attached; and when they lose it, similarly. Whereas the person
with ordinary view becomes very happy when they have wealth and upset when they lose it.

This is appearances being like illusions. When you've understood emptiness, you know that
even though things appear to be truly existent, they are not. When you've realized emptiness in
meditation, in the time between meditation things appear like illusions.

Dreams being like illusions refers to the ability to recognize that your dreams aren't real while
you are dreaming. You could have that kind of recognition through the force of the plan to be
aware of dreams as they arrive: the plan, the project, to see dreams as dreams. In that way,
even though the dream might be a very unpleasant one, you realize it is not real and you are not

The third one, just to give you a rough idea, is seeing the bardo as being like a dream. This is
something you will be able to do if your practice of seeing dreams as dreams has gone well.
You'll be able to see the bardo experience as like an illusion. Even though the intermediate
state body can't be harmed by fire, water, etc. there are all sorts of very fearful appearances
during the intermediate state. You have the appearance of the body being burnt, etc. Here what
this means is recognizing the illusory nature of the intermediate state. And through that you
wouldn't see all these experiences as frightening.

This is just a rough preview of these next two topics.


Q: What are the names of the states?

Appearances like illusions, dreams like illusions, intermediate state like illusions.

Appearances like illusions is seeing everything that appears to you like an illusion: forms,
sounds, smells, tastes, tactile sensations, ...

Q: What's the color of the outside of the central channel during tummo?

Normally the outside is blue, and when meditating on the inner heat think of it as red like the
color of flame from a butter lamp burning.

Q: Can you do illusion-like view of appearances even without direct realization of emptiness?

Certainly, if you're on the path of preparation and you have a conceptual realization of
emptiness, by way of meaning generality or mental image, that would be your realization during
equipoise and when you come out of the meditation you would be able to realize that
appearances are like illusions.

Someone who didn't realize emptiness before wouldn't realize it when the clear light manifests
after the four joys. For the "mother and son to meet" means you already have some realization

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 30 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

of emptiness. If you didn't have any understanding of emptiness before, you would manifest
clear light but wouldn't meditate on emptiness.

There is clear light like the mother and clear light like the son. Clear light like the mother refers
to the clear light that we've always had and becomes manifest when we die. The clear light of
death is the mother clear light. The son clear light refers to the realization of emptiness. If you
already had some understanding of emptiness, at the time the mother clear light becomes
manifest, then that clear light mind can realize emptiness. Mother clear light occurs naturally
and we've had it since beginningless time. Clear light is the one we haven't had since
beginningless time, and comes through study, meditation, gradual realization. Then when it
arises you can recollect that understanding and you have the union of the two.

2pm Lorne
[**good meditation on vase breathing - use later and transcribe]

Vase breathing has a couple of functions. One is to help our concentration. There's this basic
idea in Vajrayana Buddhism - where your mind goes the winds go, and where the winds go the
mind goes. So holding the vase breath at the navel helps intensify our concentration.

Another function of the vase breathing, pulling together the upper and lower airs more forcefully,
can ignite the syllable AH and cause the tummo to blaze more.

You don't have to use the vase breath ever, per Rinpoche and LTK. It's a tool to help (e.g. If you
are finding yourself distracted). Second, if you aren't igniting the letter, use the vase breath to
speed it up, but it's a little more dangerous.

When we're doing the vase breath in connection with the six yogas, you've already established
the channels, the chakras, and the syllables. One rule is to never breath through your mouth.

Vase breathing:

1. Breath in through your nostrils - gentle, silent, long in breath.

2. While breathing in, imagine the two side channels filling up, not like a balloon, but like a
tube, they expand a bit.
3. Imagine the airs from the two side channels coming down and entering into the central
channel, absorbing into the short AH at the navel. While doing that, silently swallow a little
saliva, which helps to push down the upper airs. This is the life sustaining wind, prana (one
of five airs). After that, you very gently tighten the muscles of the pelvic floor/urethra. The
function of that is to pull or push up the air below the navel - the downward voiding or
downward expelling wind. The airs meet in a vase. The two airs "kiss" at the navel. Hold
your breath and the airs, only as long as entirely comfortable. Otherwise that will cause
disturbances and illnesses in your body. Just the moment before you become
4. Release like an arrow. Gently. All the airs are inside the short AH. Because this is a
completion stage yoga you don't imagine the airs going out of the central channel (your real
breath does exhale of course). The airs release upward into the central channel.

There is a third benefit of this practice. We are visualizing the knots as open, but of course in
reality if the knots of the central channel were actually open, you wouldn't experience sight,

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 31 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

smell, sound, taste, touch, you'd be experiencing the dissolution process. So this process
loosens the knots.

There are different levels of efficiency, holding one's breath while counting to 32, 76, or 108.
This happens naturally.

Rinpoche said spend time just focusing on the short AH. If you focus on the short AH and
develop concentration there, the other things will happen naturally.

During the discussion try and remember that though things appear as truly existent from their
own side, they are not.

You learn that meditation isn't just about your mind, it's also about your body.

There are over a thousand scientific articles now on mindfulness, and many more on positive
psychology. So western psychology is being informed now by eastern.


• Short AH at navel, red, red chakra with 64 spokes bending upward.

• Blue HUM at heart upside down, white chakra with 8 spokes bending downward.
• Red OM at throat, 16 spokes with red chakra bending upward.
• White HAM at crown, upside down, 32 multicolored or white spokes, bending downward.

In your own meditation you may just focus on the short AH for a long time, from time to time do
a vase breath, especially to focus concentration. Mind placed on syllable.

Khensur Rinpoche said that if you've practiced Lam Rim and generated the realizations of the
small and great scope and realized bodhicitta, then if you practice Vajrayana you'll very quickly
get result. And if you haven't not much will happen despite a long time spent in retreat.

If you don't have bodhicitta and emptiness then the result of your meditation might be
arrogance, megalomania, pride. Since the result is energy. There are stories like that - people
who meet Milarepa and the Buddha who say they can do magical feats, etc. Tibetans address
this through stories: without altruism you just get a bigger ego.

3:30 Rinpoche

We were talking about the illusory appearances, dreams as illusions, and the intermediate state.
We also talked about the general illusion-like appearance, which we find both in the sutra and
tantra teachings.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 32 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

In the first three classes of tantra - action, performance, and yoga tantra - you have something
common to them, which is the illusion of the deity's body: recognizing that the deity's body is
appearing but completely lacking in existence.

That's the general explanation of illusion on a general level. Then there's the illusion of the
hidden meaning. This refers to the impure and pure illusory body.

In general, the impure illusory body is explained in the Guhyasamaja tantra, where the six yogas
are explained. The way these different stages are explained there is: body isolation, speech
isolation, mind isolation, and illusory body.

The mind isolation is achieved on the path of preparation according to the way that the paths
are developed according to tantra. During meditative equipoise you achieve the example clear
light, and then when you come out of that meditation you achieve the impure illusory body. On
the path of preparation.

In the system of the six yogas of Naropa, you have the practice of bringing about the blazing of
the special or exceptional tummo fire. Then, causing that fire to blaze, you experience one by
one the four joys. And then at the end you have the simultaneous bliss. That simultaneous bliss
ascertains emptiness. Whereas in the Guhyasamaja system you have the example clear light,
which is the isolation of mind. When you get the simultaneous bliss through that process, that
bliss ascertaining emptiness is the substitute for the ultimate example clear light you have in the
Guhyasamaja system.


I've explained about the illusory appearances and now we're talking about illusory dreams. The
first one is called retaining or holding the dream.

What is a dream? The dream is what we call the various appearances that arise to the sleeping
consciousness due to imprints. When you're in a deep sleep you don't dream, when the sleep is
lighter you have the appearance of various objects and you're said to be dreaming at that time.

Sleep is a mental factor that has the function of withdrawing the senses from their various
objects without their control. The senses can't engage in their objects any more. The mental
factor that has the function of doing that is called sleep.

For holding or retaining dreams, there are two ways in which this can happen: retaining dreams
through the force of the airs is not something everyone would experience. It depends on
bringing the airs into, abide, and absorb into the central channel, and then dream.

You have clear light of sleep, clear light of waking time, and clear light of death: three types.
Having made the winds enter, abide, and absorb into the central channel, clear light will arise:
the clear light of sleep. During deep sleep. One would arise from that, leave the clear light
experience, and the dreams would occur then. That would be dreams being held by the force of
the airs.

In order to do this, you need to be able to do that practice while you are awake. You need to be
able to cause the winds to enter, abide, and absorb into the central channel while awake and at
the end experience clear light that realizes emptiness. This is something easier than being able
to go through that process at the time of sleep. The mind meditating at waking time is coarser,

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 33 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

and the mind at sleep is more subtle. So the mind realizing emptiness is more subtle. Similarly
in the clear light at the time of death it is even harder to realize emptiness. You need to develop
the ability at waking before the time of sleep.

If you have a translation of the Three Convictions on page 171 you'll find that there. First you
have clear light sleep, then dreams will occur, and you recognize the dreams. The other way of
holding/retaining dreams is through the force of aspiration.

We have two ways of recognizing dreams. One is by the force of the airs, and the other is
through the force of aspiration. What that second one means is that, if you don't have the ability
to recognize the dreams through that first process, through the airs, you train your mind while
you're awake with the thought, thinking again and again, when I fall asleep and dream I'm going
to recognize the dreams as dreams. Then, when you lay down to sleep you remember the letter
OM at the throat chakra. You focus your attention one pointedly on that and go to sleep that
way. Focusing the mind on that letter at the throat helps you recognize the dreams, makes you
dream clearly, and recognize that dreams are dreams.

That way of recognizing the dreams through the power of the airs is something unique to tantra.
This second way is not unique to tantra, it's called the common way. Even someone who hasn't
entered into tantric practice can gain the ability to recognize dreams as dreams through this
method. This is a method which stops you from sleeping deeply, and then, through avoiding
deep sleep you're able to dream lucidly.

We can see that it's not unique to tantra, since there are some people who, thought they can't
bring about awareness through bringing airs into the central channel, they are still able to do
this. This way of cultivating the ability to recognize the dreams as dreams, although regarded as
the ordinary way, [?].

The advice is that, during the daytime one would cultivate the awareness that everything is like
a dream, constantly thinking to oneself, tonight when I go to sleep I'm going to dream and
recognize the dreams as dreams and use that as an opportunity for practicing virtue.

Recognizing the dreams, retaining the dreams, you can arrive at that point through the force of
aspiration by, while awake during the day give rise to the thought I'm going to recognize my
dreams as dreams tonight, and use that time for practicing virtue. By repeatedly strengthening
and cultivating that aspiration you'll be able to recognize dreams as they occur and you won't be
afraid because you know that it's a dream. You know that that appearance is not true. You can
use that opportunity for reflecting on emptiness, using the awareness that the dream is a dream
for reflecting on emptiness.

Those are the two ways of recognizing dreams. Also at the time of sleep, on the theme of using
the dreams, we have a discussion of what's called training and increasing the dreams.


Training the dreams is either worldly/mundane, or supermundane/transcendental. The first one

involves imagining that you emanate newly what has not been emanated before. And you
imagine what has been emanated becomes multiple. And you imagine going to various special

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 34 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

That was the worldly way of training the purity of the dreams. The transcendental,
supermundane way of recognizing dreams would be through the force of meditating on pure
lands, would let you have dreams of going to pure lands; having the appearance of pure lands;
dreaming of going to various pure lands.

Increasing the dreams would refer to emanating one into two, two into four, four into eight and
so forth. Some really are able to do that in the dreams, through the force of the aspiration.

The third one is abandoning fear. What this means is that you could have very frightening
dreams of being burnt in a powerful fire, carried away by a great flood, and so forth. Knowing
that this is all a dream, and being aware that in a dream the fire can't burn me, the flood can't
carry me away, and simply jumping into it without fear: you'd be able to do that. Otherwise,
without recognizing the dream as a dream it's very frightening.

And then training in seeing the dreams as being like illusions. This means that whatever
appears in the dream such as a vase, even though you don't realize it's empty of existing by its
own nature, thinking it exists empty of its own nature just like an illusion.

Next we have meditating on the suchness of the dreams. It's more difficult to withdraw the
appearances of true existence while one is awake. Because none of the coarse
consciousnesses have dissolved. Whereas, at the time of sleep, some of the coarse
consciousnesses have absorbed because all of the sense consciousnesses have absorbed. For
this reason, it's easier to withdraw the appearances of true existence. Because of the fact that
it's easier to stop the appearances of true existence during the sleep, therefore it's easier to
realize emptiness during one's sleep.


Q: In retaining the dream from aspiration, how do we visualize the OM? And how long?

The way you'd visualize it is exactly the same. If you're practicing Vajrayogini you meditate on
the throat chakra as Vajrayogini, and make fervent requests to one's guru to have clear dreams.

And then as for how long, you simply meditate on the OM at your throat until you fall asleep.
You go through a period of deep sleep, and then you dream. Then you visualize yourself as
Vajrayogini, make offerings and requests to the gurus to recognize the dreams, have long
dreams, good dreams, and be free of any hindrance to practicing virtue and have all the good
conditions for practicing virtue. Besides that, during the day being aware that appearances are
like a dream, that will also help you practice virtue during a dream.

Q: What is the difference between Guhyasamaja and the six yogas?

All of the highest yoga practices have the illusory body, clear light, and union. Before that things
are sometimes different. Where you have in some practices the isolation of the mind, in the six
yogas of Naropa you practice tummo, four joys, and then simultaneous bliss. That's the
equivalent to isolation of speech, the example clear light. Then the equivalent/substitute to
speech isolation is the tummo yoga itself. Through the tummo yoga you reach the point of the
example clear light. After the isolation of mind, you have the illusory body - that would be the
same for all of them - then the clear light and then the union.


Six Yogas of Naropa Page 35 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

For the intermediate state we have identifying the intermediate state, which means the general
presentation of what the intermediate state is. Then, secondly, the way to practice the bardo or
intermediate state yoga.

The way the intermediate state comes about is that first we go through the death process
leading to the clear light of death: earth dissolves into water, water into fire, fire into air, air into
consciousnesses, appearance, red increase, near attainment (darkness), clear light.

When the air element dissolves into consciousness, breathing ceases and people would say
now the person has died.

At that point when people in the world would normally say a person has died, all that's ceased in
terms of consciousness is the gross consciousness. When you're going through the next four
stages of dissolution there is still a level of more subtle awareness. Once the mind of near
attainment has ceased, you have this very subtle death mind, the clear light of death. As long as
that clear light remains the person hasn't yet died. At a certain point life ends and that very
moment the intermediate state begins.

The clear light at is at the heart, and the consciousness leaves from there. The signs of
consciousness having left the body, the signs that can be observed that confirm that the person
has actually died are that (in the case of someone who hasn't died of a serious illness) the red
substance comes from the nose and the white substance from the lower sex organ.

Even for ordinary people it's possible to remain for three days in the clear light. For somebody
that has already achieved a good understanding of emptiness in their life they might remain for
many days in that state. On the other hand, there are certain highly realized yogis who can stay
as long as they wish. They might not remain long, though, because it would make things difficult
for those around them.

Then the intermediate estate body arises out of clear light. Its basis is the air which occurs
under control of karma and afflictions. That air which is the mount of the clear light mind. In
other words, in an ordinary person you have a clear light mind that comes about under the
power of karma and afflictions. Its air or mount becomes the bardo body.

In the case of a high-level practitioner the air which is the mount of their body would become the
illusory body. In a way, the illusory body and the intermediate state body are the same. Their
substantial cause is the air, the mount of the clear light mind. Normally that air becomes the
intermediate state body, but in the highly realized meditator it becomes the illusory body.

The body we have at the moment, its base, what it's produced from, is the seminal fluid of the
parents: the blood and fluid from the mother and father. The fluid from the father becomes the
bones, marrow, and white bodhicitta. The blood from the mother becomes our flesh, our skin,
the blood. It's different in the case of the intermediate state body. That body isn't made from
such substances but rather made out of the air, the mount of the clear light mind. For this
reason it's unobstructed and can go anywhere.

And then the intermediate state body has all of the senses complete. It has the eye organ, the
ear faculty, the nose faculty, tongue faculty, and body faculty. But not like the ones we have. In

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 36 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

our case, when we talk about the eye organ it's a subtle form based in the physical gross I. In
the case of the intermediate state being, even though it has the five senses complete, they're
nothing to do with actual flesh and blood.

As for the form of the intermediate state being, if it's an intermediate state being of somebody
about to be born as a human, then its form is that of the human they are going to become. This
is the way it's stated by Asanga in his Bodhisattva Bhumi. According to some, if a person was a
human and will be born as a dog, for the first 2 1/2 days they would be human, and for the last
they would be a dog. But according to Asanga and Vasubandu, the intermediate state being
takes the form of what they will become.

And then the intermediate state being has certain contaminated magical powers, such as being
unobstructable, which means they can go anywhere. This they have due to the force of karma.

And then as for the duration of the bardo intermediate state, the longest an intermediate state
being can live is seven days. Some might only live for one day and end in taking birth, or after
two days, three days, etc. if within seven days it doesn't take birth, that intermediate state being
dies and is born as another intermediate state being. That can happen seven times, for a
maximum of forty-nine days, which is why we make offerings every seven days for those that
have recently died.

Because of the fact that an intermediate state being's body is very subtle, it's very easy for
things to change. That's why if we make offerings well, it can affect that being's taking a good

Next the intermediate state being can find themselves with very fearful appearances to them,
such as being on the edge of a very steep precipice. There are six uncertainties in the
intermediate state: the uncertainty of being in a very bad place causing a lot of fear, or a good
place; the appearance of very bad food, like that fed to pigs and dogs, or the appearance of
good food. The place is uncertain, the food is uncertain, the companions are very uncertain. If a
person has created a lot of negative karma before the intermediate state then they can have all
of these very unpleasant experiences. Whereas in the case of someone who has created a lot
of virtue in their life they would have very good appearances. If we avoid negative karma and
create a lot of good karma, this will stop a lot of problems from occurring in the intermediate

When you're born in the intermediate state, if you're not able to take birth within the first seven
days, you die and enter into a second week in the intermediate state. And this repeats again
and again up to seven times. In the case of someone who's going to be born from the womb,
you need a father and mother and they need the karma for you to be their child, and you to be
their child. If the conditions aren't all there you'll have difficulty in taking rebirth. Thus, it's more
difficult to be born from the womb and egg - you need a father and mother.

In the case of an entrance birth you don't need a father and mother: you're born from warmth
and moisture; likewise if you're born in one of the formless realms. In the case of the first,
second, third, and fourth form realms you don't need a father and mother. It's easier to take the
entrance birth.

What can happen is that certain beings, a bardawa (has to do with the twenty sangha) someone
who achieves the level of arhat, foe destroyer, in the intermediate state. Some achieve it

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 37 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

immediately and don't go on to a future life. Some go on for a while. There are three types. This
is described in the Abidharmakhosha and the Abhidharmasamasaya.

It's also said that the intermediate state can be stopped. If someone has created the karma to
be born in one of the hell realms, through making offerings and through various other
conditions, it's possible to stop that intermediate state, and for that being to become a human
intermediate state being and take birth as a human.

When we die there is that practice of making offerings to a guru which the person has a dharma
connection with, offering to the guru to make prayers for them. Through that guru's force that
person's intermediate state path can be changed, and the intermediate state being made aware
of these prayers.

If the one that's making the offerings has a dharma connection with the deceased, who's in the
intermediate state, such as being the guru of that person, there would be great benefit to that
intermediate state being. And likewise, even if there's no dharma connection, if there's a
connection in terms of shared possessions or wealth, there is also great benefit. And even if
neither of those, a family connection is also helpful. If there's no connection at all there's not a
great benefit for making offerings or practices on behalf of that person.

The most important thing is, while one is alive, to engage in as much virtue as possible and
avoid as many destructive actions as possible.


Q: Does bodhicitta have an effect on the subtle body?

Anything that you do that's held by bodhicitta becomes a Mahayana practice. It's definitely
beneficial. What prevents us from being able to succeed in these practices quickly is not having
love, compassion, and bodhicitta. Like the case of Asanga's slow progress in seeing Maitreya
until he gave rise to great compassion at seeing the maggot ridden dog. It's not that the
bodhicitta itself changes the subtle body; it's combining bodhicitta with the practice that makes it
much more powerful and the results come much more quickly.

When we have a lot of really strong really heavy negative karma, we need to purify that. It's
when we haven't purified it, when we apply ourselves to practice, then things don't go well. If
you purify your negative karma, things go well. So we need to purify the negative past karma.
And there's nothing like bodhicitta for purifying negative karma. Shantideva mentions that there
are very heavy negative karmas that can't be purified by anything else but bodhicitta. He also
talks about how, with bodhicitta, you're able to purify so much heavy negative karma in an
instant, just like the end of an eon that completely burns up everything. There are two activities
we need to involve ourselves in: accumulating merit and purifying negativities. And it's mainly
the latter that's important. If you do this the qualities naturally evolve in you.

On the basis of bodhicitta whatever you apply yourself to in your practice will go better.

The Buddha said to King Segye, since you have so much work to do and can't meditate much,
you should do three things: meditate on bodhicitta, make offerings, and rejoice.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 38 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

We always recite the Jangchub Senpo Rinpoche... this is a really important prayer. One reason
it's so important is that there are ten chapters in the Bodhisattvacharyavatara: three on
generating bodhicitta, three on sustaining, and three on increasing its power. All nine of those
chapters are all included in this bodhicitta verse. It's actually a verse from the

7:30pm Lorne
[**special blazing meditation]

Fire comes out both right nostril and third eye point[?]

Is there some connection between the side channels and central at the crown where the
bodhicitta comes back? Ask Rinpoche. [Later Rinpoche said yes, energies can travel between
these channels]

You send out red tummo fire and you receive back white bodhicitta

Special blazing is the best method to receive the blessings of the Buddhas and bodhisattvas,
and be under their care in future lives. Rinpoche says if you have time, this meditation is even
more powerful than Tong Len, even more benefit by bringing about the benefit of sentient

Tuesday, December 6
7am Ven Rene
[**good session combining refuge, six session, tummo, four immeasurables. Slight error in order
of six session (v1-8 repeated first). Could be good to listen, maybe splice to fix order]

No matter what object you have, part of your mind can do inner fire with the breath, part of your
mind on the little ATUNG. As you exhale the breath energy blows on that ATUNG, brings the
wind energy up inside of your spine; be very mindful taking the air through both nostrils, and
exhale through the central channel of body.

Sometimes we make a mistake with the deity's body: The deity makes you aware of the subtle
body we already have. There is gross matter and the source of the gross matter is the subtle
matter. With our sense consciousness we only see gross matter, but when you become aware
of the mandala you realize that everything is made of light energy. Those that have taken LSD,
mushrooms have experienced that. Tantra is not creating something that is not there, it's a
method to make you aware of what's already there.

So in this light energy body there is a nervous system. Lama Yeshe used to call the nadis and
chakras the nervous system of the subtle body. It's there in the subtle body you simply - through
visualizing the chakras and the channels - you simply become aware of it.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 39 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

When you go for refuge you can do so with your ordinary body or a deity's body. If in your own
body, don't generate divine pride.

It's so important to take refuge: the moment you wake up in the morning, straight away take
refuge. The real refuge is the dharma that Shakyamuni Buddha taught. The entire path. Our
spiritual journey, the aim of our life.

Berzin translates refuge as taking sound and safe direction.

The Sangha is our spiritual companion: people that inspire us, share our spiritual path, help
each other. Simply turning our heart to Buddha, dharma, and sangha protects us. Especially at
the time of death, remember the Buddha, remember our refuge - it prevents us from bearing the
ripening of negative karma. The mind of refuge prevents negative rebirth.

When we take refuge in the Buddha we take refuge in his whole spiritual path.

We inhale light that purifies our degeneration of refuge.

Then induce an altruistic state of mind: the purpose of my life and all to come is to benefit
others, to gradually bring all beings to enlightenment. Starting with a meal, a smile, help in any

We hold in our heart all dear living beings. They all want to be happy, free from problems,
mistaken reality. If they knew, they would all like to become enlightened.

LTK in Lam Rim Chenmo says you might be able to generate love for all beings on your
cushion. But if you don't start by focusing on those around you in daily life, if you stand up from
your cushion and your love and compassion is gone, your mistake is not focusing on the ones
around you in daily life. So, on the cushion start with those around you in daily life, and it will still
be there when you stand up from the cushion.

10am Rinpoche
We have been talking about the bardo, the intermediate state. Here it talks about the way in
which the elements are restored, how they come back. During the death process the order is
earth to water, water to fire, fire to air, etc. When the intermediate state happens then the order
is the opposite of that.

It talks here about the four frightening sounds - the order in which the elements are restored.
Now when they are coming back you have the air, fire, water, earth elements arising one by
one. When the air element arises then a very fierce wind starts to blow which is very powerful -
it scatters everything away. When you hear this sound it is frightening.

And then you next have the fearful sound of a very powerful fire burning. Then there is the
appearance of the sound of the ocean - very tumultuous huge waves making crashing sounds.
There's a fear that comes from that. And what happens next with the earth element is a very
frightening sound like mountains tumbling down.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 40 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

Those are the four fearful sounds. Besides that there is the fear of being at the edge of a
precipice, on the edge of a deep abyss. For somebody with strong attachment the abyss seems
red; for those with strong hatred, black; and for those with strong closed minded ignorance,

Then there are the six signs of uncertainty:

1. Uncertainty of place - finding yourself in various different places at random.

2. Food being uncertain - having the appearance that the food that you have is like food only
fit for pigs and dogs. Or that the food is puss and blood.
3. Uncertainty of clothes - can have the appearance of poor quality clothes, or very fine
4. Uncertainty of conduct or activities - sometimes you might find yourself coming and
going, seated, laying down, engaged in work, etc.
5. Uncertainty of appearance to one's mind - things are completely indefinite, seeing
something nice that makes you happy, then things change and something unpleasant
appears that makes you unhappy.
6. Uncertainty of companions - companions keep changing, there's nothing reliable about
them. They keep changing. We know that when companions keep changing like that it
causes problems in one's mind, suffering for the intermediate being.

In a text by an early Kagyu master Gaywe Bangbumpa, it says that for a practitioner of virtue,
when in the intermediate state, the appearances of good companions, nice place, good food,
pleasant appearances to the mind, appearance of good clothing; there aren't such problems for
such a being in the intermediate state.

For example, if the person, while they were alive, made offerings to various images of the holy
body, speech and mind of the enlightened beings they would have the appearance of being
helped by those enlightened beings during the intermediate state.

In the text called The Three Essential Moments by Mitye Tsuge, it explains ways to stop or turn
back these unpleasant experiences. What this means is that during one's life to cultivate the
habit of seeing the whole environment as a pure land. On the external level. In fact, as a tantric
practitioner, in general you would practice pure appearances. In tantra you have the three
attitudes: cultivate viewing whatever appears as being the mandala, and the mandala deity
inhabitants; to hear all sounds as mantra; to see everything appears to the mind as great bliss.
For example, as a practitioner of Vajrayogini you would practice seeing everything as
Vajrayogini's mandala. Every sound appearing as the triple OM mantra. And whatever appears
to your mind as Vajrayogini's mind.

In a way similar to that, according to this teaching, you have three levels to think of: outer, inner,
and secret. On the outer, seeing the world environment as pure, as a pure land. The inner, the
essence contained in that vessel, the sentient beings living in that environment, to see them all
in the form of deities' bodies - that of your main meditation deity, e.g. Vajrayogini. The third one.
The secret one, means seeing the outer, the pure land, and the inner, sentient beings,
understanding that those are all totally lacking any existence by their own nature.

Through practicing this one would be able to see everything that appears as pure. It would stop
the bad appearances and you wouldn't experience the difficulties of those bad appearances
when you arrived. For example, seeing your companions as the meditational deity, the place as

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 41 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

pure land, and both being empty by their own nature. By practicing this way, even during the
intermediate state, you have the benefit that you would have no fear and create powerful
positive imprints, and accumulate a great deal of merit. This is according to the instructions of
Mitye Tsuge.

If your practice is usually Chenrezig you would adapt the practice to that, as an illustrative
example. Whatever your main practice deity. E.g. With Amitabha, see the place as Dewachen,
and all beings as Amitabha. If your main practice is Buddha Shakyamuni, etc. If we cultivate this
practice now while we're alive we'll be able to be unfrightened in the intermediate state, create
the imprints to understand emptiness, to be born in such pure lands which are unsullied by the
faults of cyclic existence. Like Tushita, a specific Tushita, Joy of the Mind. Or many other pure
lands that don't have the faults of cyclic existence. You'll be creating the power to be born in
such pure lands.

The main thing is that you need to practice dharma while you're alive, otherwise if you're not in
the habit while alive, then when you enter into the intermediate state it's going to be quite

What we need to do before we die is to practice dharma. What we need to think about is that
which will encourage us, persuade us to practice dharma while alive, is the request of "Freeing
from Ten Narrow States of the Intermediate State" composed by Losang Chogyi Gyaltsen.
Because there are such fears in the intermediate state, we should take the essence of this life of
pleasures and endowments while we have it.

As for how we can take the essence out of this precious human life, it is by understanding that
all of our possessions, friends, close ones are all essence-less. This is explained in the Vinaya
text called Dwe Lung. Everything which is collected ends up being used up. We might have
much food and possessions and such, but definitely we have to leave that behind. That's how
the collections all end in being used up.

In the end, after being high, you always fall. For example, you are in a high position with plenty
of food, etc., but you will have to leave that position when you die. All meetings end in parting.
Whatever friends and companions you have at the moment, we'll eventually have to leave them
behind and go on. The end of birth is death. You don't know when, but you will definitely die. At
the end of being high you fall, at the end of being born you die.

None of these can protect us: friends get left behind, our body gets left behind, our possessions
get left behind. Nothing in cyclic existence has any essence.


Q: How do we practice pure vision without being in denial of the world's problems?

I don't think having pure view means that there's nothing you aren't doing anything, because all
of this is the result of karma. The method to deal with that is training in pure appearance. In this
way, unskillful destructive karma gets less, gets burned up. And the skillful positive karma builds
up in strength. Like when you are ill it's a result of your karma. Train in pure appearance to
prevent this from happening in the future. Otherwise you're just left with impure appearances
that you won't be free from until you do train in pure appearances.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 42 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

When things appear to our mind that cause fear, Buddhas can see that, but to them things don't
themselves feel fearful. Although you won't purify all the negative and destructive karma in
general, you will build up your own pure karma.

Q: Is there a relationship between the four appearances and the four chakras?

There's not really any relationship between the four appearances and the four chakras.
Generally speaking there is this process of the air entering into the central channel, abiding, and
absorbing. And when it's absorbed, having the signs of mirage-like-appearance when earth
dissolves into water. Those signs occurring doesn't necessarily mean the airs have abided and
entered into the central channel. As far as the four chakras are concerned, that's something you
would meditate on when practicing the completion stage tantras. Even ordinary people will
experience these visions when they're going through the death process.

Otherwise, for these signs to occur through the force of your meditation would only come for the
tantric practitioner. With ordinary people these signs would only occur when dying. As I
mentioned, it's not only when the winds enter into, abide, and absorb into the channel. These
signs can even arise when some of the grosser airs enter into the channel. There are more
subtle and more coarse level of these signs, and they can even happen out of order or in the
reverse order.


We've finished the explanation of the intermediate state, and now enter the second part: how to
practice in the bardo. First, the different types of person who can hold or apprehend the
intermediate state:

1. The best practitioner - at the end of the death process experiences the clear light process.
Instead of the bardo happening they would arise in the form of the illusory body. There's no
such thing as enlightenment in the intermediate state, on the basis of being an intermediate
state being. What happens is that after the clear light of death, instead of the bardo
intermediate state happening they arise in the form of the illusory body.
2. The middling practitioner - somebody who can manifest the four empties. There are
different levels within that also. Before achieving mind isolation, one could achieve speech
realization. With that realization one could have the airs abiding, absorbing, and dissolving
into the central channel. Likewise, without speech you could achieve the realization of body
isolation. In the case of the best practitioner, this would be someone who has already
achieved the realization of mind isolation. The middling practitioner hasn't reached mind
isolation, but has reached a level before that, and can experience the four empties. To
understand this practitioner we need to think about mixing waking and sleep. The highest
practitioner could practice the three mixings during wake, sleep, and death. This middling
practitioner is not able to practice the three mixings at death, but at least at the time of
waking and possibly also at sleep. They would bring the airs into the central channel at that
occasion and experience the four empties like that. From the clear life of death what
happens for this practitioner is the intermediate state.
3. The least practitioner - now we have the least practitioner. This is a person who has
received all four empowerments; they are keeping their samaya and restraints; they are

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 43 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

exerting themselves in the practice of the generation stage: divine pride and clear
appearance. For example, when we do our sadhanas, we are generating from the seed
syllable to the deity and thinking this is me on this basis. They are also practicing the
completion stage and understand the practice: that would mean the six yogas of Naropa.
They understand the death process dissolutions, the visions. And they understand how the
intermediate state body arises from the clear light. Such a person also has trained a lot in
the instructions on bringing the three kayas into the path: bringing the Dharmakaya into the
path at life, Sambhogakaya at intermediate state, and Nirmanakaya at birth. Such a person,
through the force of those practices, when they arise in the form of the intermediate state
after the clear light of death, they would be able to practice divine pride of being the actual
resultant Sambhogakaya. This is called bringing the Sambhogakaya into the intermediate

A person other than those three, someone who has achieved calm abiding (which is not a
uniquely Buddhist practice) such a person, when they reach the clear light, through the force of
their concentration they could extend the time they remain in the clear light, but this would not
be the case of bringing the clear light into the path. Such a practice would lack the distinguishing
features of the tantras.

Some people say that there's such a thing as achieving enlightenment in the intermediate state.
But in actual fact what happens is that instead of the intermediate state, the person achieves the
illusory body. The death existence, which refers to the clear light, is part of this life. And after
that clear light of death, instead of the bardo, the intermediate states happening, the person
achieves the illusory body.


Q: After the bardo, in seven days one goes back to the clear light. Then does one have a
chance to achieve enlightenment again?

This should be possible because, according to the Vaibhashika and Sautrantika systems they
assert the idea of the Bardawa, the practitioner who achieves the arhat in the intermediate state.
It should be the case that you could meditate on emptiness in that short period of clear light. Of
course that requires that you have experience meditating on emptiness and recollect it in the

Q: Can you clarify what happens to the middle practitioner in the Bardo?

That person, the middle level practitioner of the intermediate state, wouldn't be able to manifest
in the form of the illusory body during the clear light. For them, after that, there would be the
intermediate state, but a very special one. The kind of intermediate state of a strong practitioner
going on to a good life. Because they have the experience of the airs entering, abiding and
absorbing into the central channel.

Q: The death process one would go through is the dissolution of the elements and then the
appearances. Is the reversal with both the appearances and the elements?

What will happen is that, first of all, since the intermediate state birth itself is an entrance birth,
even though the signs do occur, they occur very quickly. There is the order of the appearance of
the various signs as the elements gradually dissolve. At the end of seven days they die and are

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 44 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

reborn again in the bardo. At that time they have the four signs and three appearances, clear
light. When they are born again there are again the signs in opposite order. We can make a
distinction between two types of signs depending on their order - e.g. the mind of black near
attainment of forward and reverse order.

Q: Is it true that a bardo being experiences time in the bardo state the same as its future body?
E.g. a god's day's equivalent is thousands of years.

Actually, when we talk about the lifespan of the intermediate state being we mean seven human
days - it has to be seven human days.

Q: As the HAM melts and the strand of spider silk starts descending, is that co-located with the
flame that's rising up? Are they going through each other?

What will happen is that you have the nectar dissolving from the crown to the throat, then after
that it descends to the heart, then from the heart to the ATUNG. That nectar dissolves into the
ATUNG just the way water absorbs into a brick. It's just like when you pour oil onto a fire. The
nectar absorbs in, remains, and the oil causes the fire to blaze up.

2pm Lorne
[death dissolution meditation]

The poem by the first Panchen Lama can be found in HHDL's book Advice on Dying and Living
a Better Life.

You can do the death dissolution in the context of six session guru yoga.

Elaine: the white drop descending at the time of death comes with the left and right channels
collapsing into the central channel. And the red bodhicitta coming up from the navel,
compressing the indestructible drop. How do you experience the four empties in the context of

If a person hasn't reached the level of the completion stage, the person will not be able to
recognize those things. They are easier to recognize when wake, than asleep, than when dying.
The person on the completion stage is giving rise to those visions. The practitioner evokes
those visions and mediates on emptiness - habituates themselves. You could be present in a
most subtle way - through training. E.g. every night you train on the death dissolution, into the
blue HUM at your heart. For that person when death comes it's like going home. For
practitioners not on that level it's through our aspiration, prayers. If we don't recognize the
dissolution when we go to sleep every night we won't recognize it when we die. Even an
ordinary person might report the visions as they are dying.

Rinpoche said the power of your intention can take over, from habituation.

Q: What are the three isolations equivalent to in tummo? (Language from the Guhyasamaja

Body isolation begins at the very end of the generation stage. The latter part is the completion
stage. You begin the completion stage at the tip of the jewel chakra, and the winds abide and
dissolve there.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 45 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

What's clear is that tummo practice in the six yogas easily accomplishes the body and speech
isolation. Speech isolation in Guhyasamaja is causing the winds to enter, abide and dissolve
into the heart chakra but not the indestructible drop. Khensur Rinpoche says here to start with
the navel chakra. Through practicing the four joys eventually one opens the other chakras.

At times in the past Rinpoche has said tummo practice can get to the point of speech isolation.
Today Rinpoche said tummo could bring you to the end of mind isolation and the experience of
example clear light, after which you are done with mind isolation and you arise in the illusory
body. Another time he said it takes you to the level of speech isolation.


At the end of mind isolation, you have this experience example clear light in the Guhyasamaja
system: fully qualified most subtle clear light realizing emptiness by way of a subtle direct
image. From that, the person arises with the impure illusory body. Impure in the sense that a
person hasn't realized emptiness directly. Using that body they do amazing miraculous virtue.
And that person eventually receives certain signs that they are ready and enter clear light again
in meditation and realize the actual clear light, directly realizing emptiness ("meaning clear
light"). At that time they arise in the pure illusory body. Rinpoche said the illusory body is made
of the wind of clear light. The wind that forms then is a pure wind and that person proceeds to a
state of union. At the time a person achieves the impure illusory body they are guaranteed to
achieve enlightenment in one lifetime.

3:30pm Rinpoche

Why see all sentient beings as enlightened?

For a beginner in this kind of practice it's important to recognize that there are great
advantages, you get a great profit from engaging in such a practice - seeing all beings as fully
enlightened Buddhas. If you think back to guru devotion teachings, it's stated that we should
see the guru as Buddha because we all want to profit and nobody wants to lose. When you see
your guru as a fully enlightened being, then that means that you're regarding that person as
someone really amazing, precious, special. And the Buddhas would be aware of that, so that is
a benefit of them understanding you have such regard for your gurus.

Besides that, actually, we can't really tell who is an emanation of an enlightened being and who
isn't. They could be born as a human or an animal. If we see all sentient beings as Buddhas,
then the profit is much greater. Whereas, if someone actually is an enlightened being appearing
in ordinary form and you commit non-virtues towards them, that would be really terrible.

Besides the nature of our mind is such that it gets stronger and stronger in what you habituated
it with. E.g. if you try and see the world filled with skeletons.

And then, despite the difficulty, e.g. as a Yamantaka practitioner, nine heads and legs, etc. still
one should cultivate that habit, because you'll eventually achieve the three kayas. Whereas
seeing all beings as ordinary will result in no goal being attained. It's your own inner habit that
you're cultivating.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 46 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

Like when we receive the Vajrayogini empowerment or the Yamantaka empowerment, you need
to see the guru as Yamantaka, all the disciples as Yamantaka. As a disciple it's imperative to
stop the ordinary thinking. By practicing pure appearance you're keeping the samaya, the
pledges of tantra. Practicing in that way there's nothing lost at all - it's all profit. Even if it may be
difficult, and you are just imagining and not really seeing them in that aspect.

Like for example, in the Lam Rim teachings there's the advice to regard all sentient beings older
than oneself as one's father and mother. All those the same age as brothers and sisters, and
those younger than oneself as one's sons and daughters. The reason for this is that it's easier to
give rise to affection towards them when you see them in that way. There's a great deal of profit.
Besides that, when you recognize those older than you as your mothers and fathers, it stops
many faults from arising. And if you think, I don't have any children, think about how in past lives
we have had many children.

There are so many benefits to seeing sentient beings as our father and mother - every one of
them has taken care of us with such kindness. Thinking always that's my kind mother in such a
pitiful state now. So much good comes from such a practice.

We are always reciting these words, may all mother sentient beings have happiness, be free of
suffering; it's very good if, in actual practice, the way we actually treated others were like our
mother and father.

Q: Rarely a hospice patient will ask what happens when you die. What could I explain?

When a person is dying they experience so many difficulties. If you can give them the advice to
think, may my suffering substitute for the suffering of others, so they don't have to suffer; may
no sentient being experience the suffering I'm suffering. That would be amazing.

Also, for oneself, if one is able to think in that way whenever we have difficulties: may my
suffering be instead of sentient beings' suffering. May no sentient bring every have to suffer this
pain I am experiencing. This is a very helpful important way to think. Otherwise we just feel
discouraged by, or depressed by our situation; on the other hand, by thinking this way our
suffering becomes a little less due to the force of that way of thinking. Beside which you are at
the same time creating a huge amount of merit. Likewise, when happiness arises, if we're able
to give that to all sentient beings, then you're practicing love. If the person you are trying to help
is open to this kind of view it's great to share as advice, if not then it would not be so useful.

The lowest level practitioner who's able to hold the practice in the bardo, they must have
received the four empowerments, training in the generation stage, and training and learning
about the completion stage. They know about the different signs that occur before the bardo
body arises. They know about the death signs and dissolution to the clear light of death. And
they know that after that the intermediate state occurs.

Then the text talks about the twenty-five gross phenomena, dissolving at death:

• Five aggregates
• Six sources

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 47 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

• Four elements
• Five exalted wisdoms
• Five objects included within one's visual continuum

These come:

• When the earth element dissolves into water, five dissolve all at once
• When water dissolves into fire, five
• Fire into air, five
• Air into consciousness five
• Consciousness to appearance: not all at once

When earth dissolves into water, of the four elements you have:

1. the earth element dissolving

2. The eye organ
3. visual form included in ones own continuum
4. mirror like exalted wisdom
5. form aggregate

When water dissolves into fire:

1. Feeling aggregate
2. Wisdom of equality
3. Ear sense/organ dissolves
4. Sound aggregate dissolves
5. Water element dissolves

When fire dissolves into air:

1. Fire element
2. Discernment aggregate
3. Nose faculty
4. Smell object
5. Exalted wisdom of individual investigation / discriminating wisdom

When the air element dissolves into consciousness:

1. Air element
2. Tongue faculty
3. Taste object
4. Compositional factors aggregate
5. Exalted wisdom of accomplishing activities / all accomplishing wisdom

Those are the twenty, you still have the body faculty (6) that dissolves at the same time as the
air element dissolves, and the tangible object (7).

[sphere of phenomena wisdom (8) / dharmadatu wisdom (9) dissolves also with consciousness,
and mental faculty (10)]

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 48 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

When these various phenomena are dissolving there are outer and inner signs that are

• When the form aggregate dissolves there's an outward sign of not being able to move very
much with the earth element dissolving into water. The inner sign is only visible to the person
dying: the sign of the mirage. Like the sun beating down on hot sand, the kind of steam
arising. The person themself would have the feeling of their body sinking into the ground, even
saying, Pull me out. The inner sign of a mirage. What one should think going through this
death process, is this is no more than an appearance to my mind. It's not true. Recollect the
understanding of emptiness.
• And then there are the external signs of the water element dissolving into the fire element: the
saliva in the mouth and nose drying up; the tongue getting thicker. The inner sign is of smoke.
At that time also one should think to oneself this is a mere appearance to my mind and is not
truly existent.
• The signs that occur when fire dissolves into air are that the warmth of the body becomes less
and gradually disappears from the extremities; and at the end you just have the heat at the
heart. The inner sign only appears to the dying person of "fireflies" - flickering sparks. This is
due to the fire dissolving into the air and the air becoming clearer.
• When the air dissolves into consciousness, the air element, this refers to the air which is the
mount of the conceptualizing mind. The eighty conceptual minds / the eighty indicative
conceptions. There are 33 indicative of the mind of appearance, 40 with mind of red increase,
7 indicative of the mind of near attainment. Those dissolve into the consciousness. The outer
sign of that happening is that the outward breath is long, the in breath very difficult and short.
The inner sign is of a butter lamp unmoved by wind, burning steadily.

Once the air has dissolved into consciousness, the outer breathing has stopped. Normally you'd
say now this person has died. At that point, when the air has dissolved into consciousness, the
gross mind of death has begun (the subtle mind of death is the clear light).

During this process - earth dissolving to water and so forth - we're advised to recollect
bodhicitta, the understanding of emptiness, refuge, and so forth, thinking to oneself that all this
is appearing but not truly existent. And to keep thinking in this way right down to the time of
clear light. Keep a sharp mind. This is described as the real powa, meditating on bodhicitta.
That means you will be born in one of the fortunate realms or as a god; assuring a fortunate
rebirth. For this reason refuge is described as the supreme transference of consciousness.
When you go for refuge it is not possible to go to a lower realm - you'll be born as a human
being or a god. For this reason it's good to show the person when they are dying an image of
their guru or the Buddha.

Many Kadampa lamas praised the practice of refuge very highly. They would say, although
there are the practices of generation and completion stage, all I want to practice is refuge. They
describe it as the supreme thought transference. If you practice bodhicitta that includes refuge.
The causal and resultant refuge.

If you want to recollect refuge at the time of death, before you die you should become very
familiar with the practice of refuge. Practice it constantly to build up a strong habit of refuge in
your lifetime. Whatever you familiarize yourself with in your mind, that habit becomes stronger
and stronger. What it is you become most familiar with in your life, that's what you'll think about

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 49 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

when you die. Likewise recollect the advice to king Sekye to practice bodhicitta when coming,
going, sitting, eating - at all times.


Q: What are the signs that the winds are in the central channel during dissolution?

When you start to see some of those signs it's not a guarantee that the airs are entering into the
central channel. When we talk about earth dissolving into water, what it means is that the earth
element has degenerated and the water element has become clearer. Each of the four elements
has an air which is its mount. The earth air, water air, fire air, air air. When we talk about the
earth dissolving into water the power of the air which is the mount of the earth has degenerated,
disappeared. Just because that happens there's no guarantee the airs have entered into the
central channel. Sometimes one of these signs might occur, but everything is restored again.
Even though that can happen, it's good to use such an experience to meditate.

To speak more about whether these signs are occurring because of airs entering, remaining,
and absorbing into the central channel, the signs are:

• The breath from the right and left nostrils becomes equal. You need to check in the morning
whether the air comes more strongly from the right nostril for the first three breaths, then the
fourth, fifth, and sixth when it's coming more strongly from the left. If, instead, you can check
and find that the air is coming equally from each, that is a sign.
• The sign that the air has dissolved into the central channel is that not only has movement of
the air stopped in the nose, but also the movement of the stomach. Remember that when air
dissolves into consciousness breathing stops, but that doesn't mean the airs have dissolved
into the central channel. Once there is no breathing from both the nose and the stomach you
know the airs have dissolved into the central channel.


When the airs enter then you have the three periods in the morning where the breath comes
stronger from the right then three after that more strongly from the left. When you check if you
see they are coming with equal strength from both nostrils, then you know the airs have entered
into the central channel. And then after that they abide. But abiding is not enough. Abiding is
when breathing is stopped and air is still in the stomach. If you remain like that it could cause
illness. You need to have no airs in the stomach. That's what it means for the airs to dissolve in
the central channel. All the airs will dissolve, even the life holding air would all dissolve into the
life holding air at the heart. We have the very subtle wind and consciousness at the heart. When
that's happened we should say the airs have dissolved into the central channel.

As I mentioned, the way you would check is if the breathing is balanced on the right and the left.
You can check by putting some very fine ashes or powder on your finger and breath in and out.

You are at the stage still of the gross mind of death. Now consciousness dissolves into white
appearance. The appearance at that time is an empty appearance like a very clear sky filled
with moonlight, pervaded by moonlight. This is the sign that the airs which are the support of the
indicative conceptions, that those have dissolved into consciousness.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 50 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

These four, the appearance, increase, near attainment, and clear light, alternatively are referred
to as: empty, very empty, great empty, and all empty. Sometimes you hear reference to the four
empties, and sometimes to appearance, increase, etc.

Next the air which is the mount of appearance dissolves into increase. When we say increase
there is an appearance like empty space pervaded like sunlight.

Next we have near near attainment, also known as black near attainment - empty space filled
with darkness like at night when you can't see anything. A very clear space filled with darkness.
Black near attainment.

With the near attainment you have two parts to that. The first part is some kind of recollection or
awareness, and the second part where there's not recollection. The part with no recollection or
consciousness at all is where the grosser airs have completely ceased, and the most subtle
mind hasn't yet become manifest. Literally no recollection.

As for the clear light, when the most subtle light has become manifest it's said that the clear light
has occurred. There is the conventional clear light and the ultimate clear light. Conventional
clear light is empty space that comes about as a result of gross objects ceasing. Ultimate clear
light refers to the emptiness of that mind. When we talk about the clear light occurring, in the
case of somebody realizing emptiness at that time, that emptiness of the clear light mind, then
we would say the ultimate clear light has occurred. For someone who hasn't realized emptiness
it simply refers to the conventional clear light - the appearance like empty space. That
appearance like empty space, like a very clear sky, that appearance, because of the fact that it's
similar to emptiness, at that time someone who actually understood emptiness could realize

When the clear light ceases then the subtle light of death has ceased. Then after that you have
the intermediate state. Except for someone who is going to be born in a formless realm. In that
case the formless realm concentration will become manifest. Otherwise if you're going to be
born in another realm (as human for instance) you would have the intermediate state.

We usually learn about bringing the three kayas into the path. Like when you're practicing
Vajrayogini when the main BAM dissolves into the top of the PA you think that the earth is
dissolving into water and now there is disappearance like a mirage. That it's untrue and doesn't
exist by its own nature. And when the PA dissolves into the crescent it's like smoke. Then the
crescent dissolves into the circle fire dissolves into air and there's the appearance like sparks.
And when the circle dissolves into the nada you think that air has dissolved into consciousness
and there's the appearance of vivid light from a butter lamp. This is how you would train in the
dissolution of the four elements with Vajrayogini. And there is an equivalent practice with any
highest yoga tantra.

Then you still have the nada left with three curves. As the first, the lowest, dissolves you think
you have the white appearance. The second one corresponds to the red increase. As the third
disappears you think of the black near attainment. When it's completely disappeared you have
the clear light. At that point one should try to meditate for a while on clear light emptiness. At
least on the level of the imagination, how nothing exists by its own nature. This brings the
Dharmakaya to the path. It's important to recognize that this is my resultant Dharmakaya. This is
a method to purify ordinary death that occurs under the control of kleshas and ordinary
emotions. The resultant Dharmakaya refers to that of enlightened beings.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 51 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

Then within that space suddenly there is the appearance of the letter PAM which is in nature
nondual bliss and emptiness appearing in the aspect of the letter PAM. You recognize this as
the intermediate state enjoyment body and identify that as your own future Sambhogakaya. This
is a practice for purifying the ordinary intermediate state. You don't need to meditate on the
aspect of the deity but only on the PAM. This is a method of purifying one's own future
intermediate state that will occur under the control of karma and afflictions. So you hold that one
pointedly for a little while.

Then after the intermediate state, which occurs under the control of karma and kleshas you
have birth that takes place also under control of karma and kleshas. Here, if you're doing
Vajrayogini practice you look down and see a moon which is white in color with a hint of red
vibration. On the edge of the moon is the triple OM mantra. When you look down you're in the
aspect of the PAM and you think I must give birth there. You enter into the moon disk and this
purifies the ordinary bardo, the fluid of the mother and father, and, having landed on that moon
you send out lights which transform the entire environment and all of the inhabitants into
Vajrayogini. And then the lights absorb back and you transform into the aspect of Vajrayogini
which you recognize as your own resultant Nirmanakaya and you hold divine pride in that.


Q: How do you get enlightenment in the bardo?

There are no gross aggregates to purify in the bardo. The illusory body could be in the form of
Vajrayogini, but it would still need to purify the collections of merit and so forth. In the
Paramitayana you need to accumulate merit for three countless eons. Instead, here you have
the illusory body which enters into an illusory body in order to purify merit, teach sentient beings.
So in that very life the illusory body is on the verge of achieving enlightenment by emanating a
body that can be seen by others to purify and accumulate merit.

With respect to the earlier question about tummo:

What happens is the fire of the tummo comes up and goes three times around the HUM at the
heart, three items around the OM at the throat, three times around the HAM at the crown and
dissolves into that letter, and then the bodhicitta drops from there down the central channel. So
there's no pushing and shoving for space! The flame has gone up and dissolved into the HUM.
You can of course send up more fire repeatedly if you want. They aren't simultaneous. Rather
than going just straight down the nectar would reach the OM at the throat, perform the function
of increasing the heat and the bliss of the OM at the throat, and carry on to the other letters in
the same way.

7:30pm Lorne
[visualization as deity and vase breathing]

Khensur Rinpoche said don't think about it too much re:Elaine's comment about the channels.

At the end of all the dissolutions:


Six Yogas of Naropa Page 52 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

• Appearance of clear light
• Quality of great bliss
• Ascertaining emptiness
• Divine pride - I'm the resultant Dharmakaya of the Buddha

When the fire element dissolves, discriminating wisdom dissolves - you can't tell things apart.
And when the water dissolves, the feeling aggregate dissolves - you stop feeling.

Gross consciousness
Subtle consciousness is the light body / dissolution of visions
Extremely subtle is the wind mount of clear light mind

80 conceptual minds - there's a debate. Some lamas say all absorb before the mind of white
appearance. The reason why they are related is because the winds associated with 40, 33, 7
are associated with white, red, black appearances. Panchen Lama Losang Chokyi Gyaltsen
says all at once.

Examples of the 40 conceptual minds associated with red increase are: capacity for
amazement, rapture, passion, pride, spite, aggression, violence, scheming, ...

You still have subtle awareness at the time of clear light, subtle grasping at inherent existence.
These are only completely overcome at the time of meaning clear light.

Wednesday, December 7
7:30am Rene
[kindness of Shakyamuni Buddha in our degenerate age, refuge, six session]

10am Rinpoche
We have been talking about how the clear light occurs when we die. There are the eight signs
that occur: earth, water, fire, ... Now we need to train in a process similar to when we die by a
process called bringing the three kayas into the path. For bringing the three kayas into the path
we need to understand the three kayas of the basis, path, and result:

Basis: basis Dharmakaya, Sambhogakaya, Nirmanakaya; the clear light of death is called the
Dharmakaya; the Sambhogakaya of the basis refers to the intermediate state body; the
Nimanakaya is the birth.

Path: Dharmakaya is example and clear meaning pure light, Sambhogakaya is the pure and
impure illusory body; when it enters into the old aggregates, the old body, it's called the path
Nirmanakaya. At the time of the path you generate yourself as the deity. Just like in the bardo,
the bardo being, the basis Sambhogakaya enters a new life, then just like that the pure and
impure illusory body enter the old body, and that's called the basis Nirmanakaya. The yogi or
yogini practicing at that level who arises in the form of the illusory body can go to various pure

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 53 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

lands and receive teachings and so forth, and can enter into the old body and teach disciples.
There's also the Dharmakaya, Sambhogakaya and Nirmanakaya of sleep.

The clear light of sleep. When we fall asleep, then on a somewhat coarse level the elements
dissolve and appearances. The time frame is very brief. At the end of that process you get the
clear light of sleep. When the sleep becomes lighter, one begins to dream, and one does this
and that, comes and goes here and there. At that time there is the dream form, also referred to
as the dream illusory body. That dream form at the end dissolves back into the subtle wind at
the heart and disappears just like your breath on a mirror vanishes from the edge inward. At that
point you wake up. Similar to that, for the yogi or yogini practicing the illusory body, just like
when you're asleep, it's the dream body that's coming and going doing this and that, this yogi
isn't actually doing anything, they are as if asleep. It's instead the illusory body coming and
going to pure lands, receiving teachings, and then that body dissolves at the heart and that yogi
or yogini wakes up and the air starts to flow through the nostrils and so forth. This is what's
referred to as the birth emanation body at the time of the path.

And in fact, this whole process is used as a proof of the existence of the intermediate state,
because when we sleep the elements dissolve, the signs occur briefly, and in deep sleep you
have the clear light of sleep. And at that time it is possible for one to meditate on emptiness and
realize emptiness. Then at the end of that period the dream body forms and you're able to go
here and there, to pleasant places, etc. You have that subtle body. Likewise when you die the
same process unfolds, but it's the bardo body in the bardo instead of the dream body during

This is maybe not so easy to understand, but if you do, there is huge benefit. LTK mentions in
the text that there are tantras that explain the benefits; that if you understand the illusory body -
not even achieve it - because the process is the same: the way the dream body occurs after the
clear light of sleep is like the illusory body after the clear light of death. Without even achieving
it, LTK says if you just understand it, you achieve the eighth ground and won't ever fall to the
lower realms.

When you fall asleep and the clear light of sleep occurs, at that time all the appearances of
gross objects ceases and there is just this emptiness. This is similar to when you die. If you
understand how the death process occurs, you can understand that the clear light of sleep and
death are very similar. When you experience the clear light of sleep it's possible to recollect the
meaning of emptiness and realize emptiness. Similar to that, when you die and you have the
clear light of death, the base Dharmakaya, it's possible to realize emptiness at that time. The
way both clear lights occur is very similar, and likewise the way the dream body, bardo body,
and illusory bodies occur. If you understand the way the bardo occurs, you'll be able to
understand how the illusory body is achieved.

Even if you're able to realize emptiness at the time of the clear light of death, there is no
guarantee that, at the end of that, you would be able to arise in the form of the illusory body.
The reason for this is that there are two types of isolation of mind: the ultimate isolation of mind
and the mere, simple isolation of mind. Ultimate clear light and mere simple clear light. With
ultimate example clear light all of the airs have entered into the central channel including the
pervasive wind. With the simple isolation of the mind, even if all the other airs have entered into
the central channel (equalizing, downward voiding, life holding, etc.) the pervasive wind remains
outside, which is the most difficult to bring into the central channel: it pervades the whole body
including the joints. It's something you can only do by training a lot, like in vajra recitation,

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 54 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

bringing the pervasive wind into the central channel. After the clear light of death, apart from the
case of being born in a formless realm, there's always going to be an intermediate state. When
all of the airs have entered into the central channel, there's a new air that's able to become the
illusory body.


There are two types: the clear light of the general meaning and the hidden meaning. The
general clear light comprises the object of clear light - emptiness; and the subject of clear light -
the mind realizing emptiness. This is something that is general, e.g. in the Paramitayana.

There are two mahamudras: the sutra tradition refers to emptiness in terms of the object; in the
tantric tradition the object is the same - emptiness - the difference is in terms of the subject that
realizes that emptiness. Because in the sutra tradition the subject that realizes it is described as
the exalted wisdom realizing emptiness. Whereas in the tantra tradition it's the innate mind of
nondual bliss and emptiness.

And so you have the object clear light, which refers to emptiness, and the subject clear light, the
mind realizing that emptiness. Likewise, you have the mahamudra object, which is emptiness,
and the mahamudra subject which is the mind realizing that emptiness. In each case the object
is emptiness and the subject is the mind realizing that emptiness. With sutra mahamudra, the
object is emptiness and the subject the mind realizing it. In tantra you also have the object
emptiness and the subject realizing it. The mind realizing it is the simultaneous, innate great
bliss realizing emptiness.

When we talk about the unique tantric subject clear light, simultaneous great bliss realizing
emptiness, it's unique to the highest yoga tantra. It doesn't have that subject clear light because,
through the lower tantras you don't have that simultaneous great bliss.

So this subject clear light in the highest yoga tantra, which is the simultaneous great bliss that
realizes emptiness, can only occur by employing the completion stage techniques to make the
airs enter, abide, and absorb into the central channel.

As far as the six yogas of Naropa are concerned, what that would mean is that you meditate on
the special tummo by way of which you would make the airs enter, absorb, and abide in the
central channel, and on that basis realize emptiness - activate or achieve simultaneous great
bliss and use that to achieve emptiness.

There's no guarantee that just by achieving that simultaneous great bliss, that afterwards you
would arise in the form of the illusory body of the completion stage. Rather you would need to
train in that repeatedly.

When you have achieved that unique clear light which is the mahamudra great bliss, the basis,
the life in which you achieve that clear light has to be the same life as either the concordant
illusory body or the actual illusory body. If that clear light has the same basis, if it occurs in the
same life as the actual illusory body, then there's a guarantee you would achieve enlightenment
in that life. Whereas if the clear light is achieved on the basis of the concordant illusory body,
there's no guarantee you would achieve enlightenment in that lifetime, though you might
achieve it in the intermediate state as before.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 55 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

Achieving the actual illusory body would be like when you achieve the supreme dharma of the
path of preparation - you'll definitely achieve the path of seeing during that very lifetime.
Whereas in the case of the concordant illusory body, this would be like having achieved the
peak or high level path of preparation. The concordant illusory body means, through meditating
on the completion stage, you don't actually achieve the illusory body. You achieve the illusory
body from the perspective of your mind, the meditation.

The text talks about the stages of entering into the clear light. Basically, this was explained
already in the context of Vajrayogini. There are two ways of gathering up everything into the
clear light. One way is, in the form of Vajrayogini, send out light to universal sentient beings,
then they dissolve back into oneself, dissolve into the BAM at the heart, crescent, dot, nada,
and then clear light. The second way of doing it is when you don't send out light to universal
beings, you simply dissolve from above and below into the BAM, etc. including the various signs
happening. This is just like the process at death, through the force of karma. We have to
practice training in this repeatedly.


Q: Why does the pervasive wind not enter into the central channel at the time of death?

What happens is that, for sure when you enter into the clear light of death, then all of the
pervasive winds are going to enter into the central channel through the force of karma. That's
for sure. Now, at that point, if you realize emptiness there's no guarantee that afterwards you
would arise in the form of the illusory body. The reason is that someone who has never become
involved in tantric process in their life could have realized emptiness and a high level of
concentration, they realize emptiness with the clear light. But such a person wouldn't arise in the
form of the illusory body after that clear light because they have no experience of practicing the
tantric technique. They would have had to do the meditation on bliss, etc. in order to achieve the
illusory body after the clear light of death. You need to have a huge amount of merit to achieve
the illusory body, the equivalent to the accumulation of three countless great eons of merit in the
perfection vehicle.

When you achieve the clear light while awake, there is again no guarantee that all of the airs
would have entered into the central channel. The pervasive winds could still remain outside the
central channel. In order to make all winds enter into the central channel while awake you would
need to rely on a partner, a mudra.

Q: We know you can't achieve enlightenment in the bardo, what about during your lifetime?
They say Buddha didn't actually achieve enlightenment under the bodhi tree but much earlier in
the Akanishta pure land.

When we talk about achieving enlightenment in the bardo it means that instead of arising out of
clear light into bardo, you achieve instead the illusory body and on that basis achieve
enlightenment. According to the special outlook of the perfection vehicle, yes you do have to
achieve enlightening in Akanishta, and in the case of Shakyamuni Buddha he displayed how to
achieve enlightenment under the bodhi tree though he actually achieved it earlier in Akanishta.
According to tantric teachings, to achieve enlightenment in one lifetime you need to be human,
possessing six elements. Whereas if you're born in Akanishta they're all gods.

And you can't achieve enlightenment while asleep!

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 56 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

Q: Rinpoche talked about the illusory body going out to take teachings and come back to the old
body. Could you have other emanations besides the old body of the old aggregates?


Q: If at the clear light of death you realize emptiness do you get liberated from Samsara?

What would happen is that you would have a special bardo body, the intermediate state body of
someone going on to a very special future life with many opportunities for practicing dharma in
general and tantra.

Q: What's the concordant illusory body?

It refers to the case where, e.g., you haven't actually made the very subtle airs become the
Vajrayogini form, yet, from the perspective of your mind, your imagination, you have a complete
Vajrayogini form. Furthermore, although in contrast to the case of an actual illusory body that
forms when you've gone through the whole process of the airs entering, abiding, and absorbing
into the central channel and the great bliss realizing emptiness occurs, then the wind which is
the mount of that mind actually becomes the illusory body. With the concordant illusory body, it's
not just arising in meditation as the deity. It's when you've meditated repeatedly on all the parts
of this process, arising as the deity from one's imagination.


In general, once you've achieved illusory body you achieve enlightenment on that very basis.
The old body you wouldn't talk about dying. In that very lifetime you would achieve
enlightenment - the old one you achieved enlightenment in becomes an uncontaminated body.

Q: Is the illusory body intentional or does it arise from familiarity at death/bardo?

There would be the intention to achieve the illusory body and prior to that the intention to
achieve it. What would actually happen is that very subtle air which is the mount of that clear
light mind, great bliss realizing emptiness, would become the illusory body. The practitioner
would have been remaining meditating single pointedly on emptiness with that mind of great
bliss, then there is a slight movement of the air, and that air transforms into and becomes the
illusory body.

When we talk about illusory body, that's a body. And the person who has the illusory body. The
very subtle air which is the mount of that clear light mind becomes the illusory body. And then
there is the person who has that body. The very subtle mind at the time of clear light becomes
the mind of the person who has the clear light body.

Q: What does it mean to attain the equivalent of an eighth bhumi bodhisattva through realizing
illusory body?

Understanding the illusory body has the same benefit as achieving the eighth ground, but it's
not that you achieved the qualities of an eight ground bodhisattva. When you've actually
achieved and understood the illusory body, you're able to achieve enlightenment in one lifetime.
Whereas when you've achieved the eighth ground according to the Paramitayana, you still have
a long way to go to achieve enlightenment and you can't achieve enlightenment without entering
the tantric vehicle.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 57 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

From the first through eighth ground it takes one countless great eon, and then you have one
countless great eon to go, using bodies of uncontaminated karma. In the case of having
achieved the impure or pure illusory body you're definitely going to achieve enlightenment in
that lifetime.

2pm Lorne
[exploring the channels, chakras, and letters]

• The coarse body is the body of our flesh and bone

• The subtle body is the body of the energy channels, red and white substances, and winds
• The very subtle body is the subtle wind energy that serves as the mount for the minds of white
appearance, red increase, black near attainment, and clear light, white attainment.

The reality of the mind:

• The coarse mind is the mind of the five sense consciousnesses

• The subtle mind is the six root distortions, ... mental factors, eight root conceptions
• The very subtle mind contains the four empties: white appearance, red increase, black near
attainment, clear light.

When you're focusing on the ATUNG sometimes you can focus on the whole syllable. In the
beginning its good to focus on the whole syllable. At times during the practice you can focus just
on the crescent, drop and squiggle, or each of those.

Training in the chakras: we start at the heart and end at the heart. Better to start at the crown
chakra and go down when placing the syllables.

If we learn these precious teachings we have a responsibility to be careful, to understand and

practice correctly. There are even errors and omissions from great monks of the past. When
sharing with each other, do our best to be careful. Do our best not to make mistakes. And doing
these wrong leads to negative side effects.

The pure illusory body is the substantial cause of a Buddha's Sambhogakaya.

3:30pm Rinpoche

Clear light refers to emptiness, one definition. When we talk about emptiness the question
arises, empty of what? It's not empty of existing, and it doesn't imply that things don't exist at all.
What it means is that everything is empty of existing from its own side. Everything is empty of

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 58 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

existing independently, autonomously, without depending on anything else. Because all
phenomena exist depending upon parts, causes and conditions, and so forth. Everything exists
dependently, relying upon others.

When you check and analyze to try and find the person there is no such thing you can find. In
general the person does exist. When you say you can't find the person through analysis, it
means that when you search for the person upon the aggregates, you don't find the person. You
can also talk about the person as comprised of the six elements: earth, water, fire, air, space,
and consciousness elements. And if you look for the person upon those six elements you can't
find the person. The person exists but you can't find it. That's the meaning of saying it doesn't
exist from its own side.

You might want to say that the consciousness is the person. But there are different types of
consciousness: gross/coarse, subtle, and very subtle. For example there are twenty-five coarse
conceptual minds. Which one of those could be the person? When the coarse consciousnesses
cease, there is the subtle consciousness at the time of white appearance, red increase... If you
labeled the person on the coarse consciousness you'd have to say the person ceased. Likewise
if you label the person upon the subtle consciousness, that disappears at the time of clear light.

It's the same with everything which exists, all phenomena. If you look for it, you won't find
anything you can point out and say that's it. But it does exist. It seems as if you would be able to
point out the object when you search for it - that's the meaning when you say it appears from its
own side - it seems like you'd be able to find it, to point to "it". Believing things exist that way is
called grasping at the self, the root of all distorted minds. If we can see that things don't exist in
that way, we can eliminate that true grasping mind, and along with that, all the mental affliction
produced depending upon it. If we understood that everything is existing empty from its own
side, we could remove that true grasping mind that is the root of the kleshas, the afflictive
emotions. That true grasping mind is the root of all cyclic existence and afflictions.

To give an idea how this grasping mind is the root of all afflictive emotions, think about when
you get angry. Say someone hits you with a stick. There seems to be an I you would be able to
find when you search for it. In fact, though, when you search for it you can't find it. When you
understand that, it immediately causes the anger to abate.

We may think when we hear that the person has to be posited as a mere appearance to the
conceptual mind, that the person can't do anything. But they can. Even a dream person can do
things. Meeting a dream friend makes you happy, a dream enemy makes you unhappy. Even
that mere appearance to the conceptual mind, still that person can create karma and experience
happiness and suffering as a result.

The person is not true at all, not true in the slightest. The person you see as a friend is not true
in the slightest. A friend can change into an enemy in a moment, just like the enemy can change
into a friend in a moment. In this way we can see that friend and enemy don't exist from their
own side, their status can change with some slight change in conditions or circumstances. If the
friend were true, everyone would see them that way. But others see the friend as an enemy. If a
person were a friend from their own side, everyone would see them in the same way.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 59 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

In the Wheel of Sharp Weapons, you find the proof that nothing exists truly. It says there that
things are not true because things are constantly changing. One thing turns into another.
Something comes into existence and something stops existing. Things change every moment.

For example, if you are very wealthy that is not true, if you are very poor, that is not true. A
person can quickly change from wealthy to poor or poor to wealthy in an instant. When a person
can recognize that this is not true at the moment, then when they become poor it's not really a
problem for them because they already understood. Likewise a person who's wealthy who
thinks it's true, when they become poor that's when it causes so many problems in their mind.
To someone who sees things as they are, when they are wealthy they don't get to happy about
it, when they are poor they don't get too sad. When you understand things don't exist truly it
doesn't create problems for you.

If you understand emptiness your destructive emotions of attachment and aversion will become
less. And when you realize emptiness you can eliminate them all. If you can see, when things
are going badly this is not truly existent, when things are going well this is not truly existent, then
mental afflictions will be much less. The true grasping mind and the self cherishing mind are the
root of everything that is bad, of all our problems. Each are sometimes referred to as the other.
Bodhicitta is the antidote to self cherishing mind, wisdom realizing emptiness is the attitude to
true grasping mind.

Here we're talking about clear light emptiness, which means the object clear light. Whether
you're talking about tantra or sutra, the object clear light refers to emptiness. You can see how
important this is for a tantric practitioner because we're constantly purifying everything into
emptiness. All the deities and mandalas that we practice need to be generated within
emptiness. The reason is that we have to stop ordinary thinking and ordinary appearances. We
do this by meditating on emptiness. And it's important to make the imprints of emptiness. Also,
we talk about how important bodhicitta is, conventional and ultimate. Ultimate bodhicitta means
the direct realization of emptiness. Even at our level when we meditate on emptiness it's still
considered meditating on ultimate bodhicitta.


Q: If you meditate on emptiness in the clear light, since emptiness is a non-affirming negation,
how do you know you are meditating on emptiness?

In general, when we talk about non-affirming negations, space is a non-affirming negation, it's a
mere negation of obstructive tangibility. Likewise emptiness is a mere negation of true
existence. We need to think how everything is merely labeled from the side of the mind.
Meditate on everything being empty from its own side. Stop all other appearances and meditate
on non existence from its own side. What we're supposed to be meditating on is not existing by
its own nature.

To meditate on the emptiness of the vase, stop and just place your mind on the appearance of
the vase and how it doesn't exist from its own side. The appearance is just like empty space to
your mind, a non-affirming negation. If at the same time you were to affirm some other object,
your meditation would not be a non-affirming negation. Non-vase means the negation of non-
vases, which implies a vase. While something is being negated, something else is being

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 60 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

When it comes to meditating on emptiness during the clear light, how you make sure that what
you're meditating on is emptiness and not something other than emptiness is, what you would
be calling to mind, is non-existence by its own nature. When we talk about meditating on clear
light, at the dying process or the force of meditation, if we can, we should meditate on
emptiness. How? Just think of non-existence by its own nature.

That's kind of more or less it for the clear light. There's the clear light of waking and sleeping. In
the clear light of the waking period, it is for example, if you're practicing Vajrayogini, you go
through the stages of dissolution, near attainment, clear light. That's the Dharmakaya at the
time of waking. With the clear light of sleeping, which comes just before dreaming, you practice
the dissolution of the deity before you sleep. And when you're falling asleep you'd go through a
process similar to dying: earth to water, etc. and at the end you get the clear light of sleep. If you
understood emptiness before that, you would be able to realize emptiness then.

In general, the clear light of sleep occurs during deep sleep. And then after the clear light of
sleep you start to dream. The body you have at that time is the illusory body of sleep, the dream
body. It's like the actual illusory body in the sense that it's apart from one's actual body that
remains sleeping. It can go here and there separate from the actual body. When you wake up,
the dream body dissolves into the heart and we can say the person has woken up. When you've
been sleeping and wake up, it's called the Nirmanakaya of sleep.

So you have those three mixings of the time of sleep, involving the meditation on emptiness.
You have the three kayas of waking, sleep, and death. At death you either arise in the form of
the illusory body, or in the form of the bardo body, one of those two. When that bardo body
enters into the liquid and blood of the mother and father, then that would be the Nirmanakaya of
the death period.

As for mixing, we talk about the nine and three mixings. Three mixings of waking, the three at
time of sleep, and three mixings at time of death. For the three mixings at the time of waking,
then you have the mixing with the Dharmakaya, Sambhogakaya, and Nirmanakaya. Those are
the nine mixings.

When we talk about three mixings we talk about the mixing at time of waking, sleep, and death.
When we talk about mixing at the time of waking, that is when, for example, you are practicing
Vajrayogini and you go through the dissolution to the clear light, generating divine pride as the
resultant Dharmakaya as Vajrayogini - that's the waking as mixing. When you meditate on the
PAM as the divine pride, that's the Sambhogakaya at the time of waking; and entering into the
moon and transforming into Vajrayogini, that's mixing the Nirmanakaya with the time of waking.

At time of sleep when you do these meditations in sleep those are the mixings during sleep -
dissolving clear light into the Dharmakaya; the dream body is mixing Sambhogakaya with the
time of sleep; going into the very subtle mind at the time of awaking is Nirmankaya.

This is very important about dissolving the three kayas into the path.


Six Yogas of Naropa Page 61 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

Q: Is there a relationship between ultimate example clear light and actual illusory body, and
simple clear light and concordant illusory body?

Yes, after the ultimate example clear light you arise in the actual illusory body, and after the
mere example clear light you arise in the concordant illusory body.

Q: What is vajra recitation?

There are two types of vajra recitation: vajra recitation of the air and vajra recitation of the
isolation of speech, taught in the Guhyasamaja tantra. For isolation of air, this involves
contemplating the vibration of the letters OM, AH, and HUM. For example, if you're practicing
Yamantaka, this practice is the equivalent of the tummo meditation. As you breath in with the
vibration of the OM, the air dissolves into the ATUNG at the navel. And then with the sound of
the vibration of the letter AH the air remains in the short AH, and with the vibration of the HUM,
the air comes out again from the short AH.

The three vajra recitations of speech isolation is focused on the very subtle air and mind at the
heart. As you breath in, you reflect on the inseparability of the sound of the OM and the vibration
of the in breath. And the air is absorbed into the indestructible drop at the heart. And then the
vibration of remaining inseparable from the vibration of the letter AH, for that, then the air is
remaining absorbed in the indestructible drop at the heart. With the vibration of the HUM
inseparable from the vibration of the air breathing out, you breath out and the air comes out
again from the indestructible drop. The air is sent out again from the heart with the purpose to
loosen the knots at the heart. Like ramming a stick into a pipe to clear it.

Of these two, the vajra recitation of the air, the former is practiced before the completion stage,
the vajra recitation of speech isolation is something you'd only practice at the completion stage.
When you've gained a high level realization of the completion stage. But we can train in it now.


Now we go on to powa, transference.

• Ordinary transference
• Middling - transference into a lower body
• Going to a pure land through depending upon a guru and yidam

Ordinary transference, there are three types:

• Transference depending upon a virtuous friend as companion

• Transference through your own training
• Transference through depending on some other method

Transference depending upon friends or your spiritual guides. This kind of

powa/transference should be done when the outer breath ceases, when air dissolves into
consciousness. At that point, whether it's one's guru or one's companions (they need to be
expert in the transference instructions) they would do the transference at that point.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 62 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

Transference through the force of your own training. You approach this by first of all training
in the transference practice until you have signs of success in the practice. Then, when the time
is right, you'd actually do the transference. When you see the signs of impending death. The
unmistaken signs of death - when you are sure you are just about to die. Then give your
possessions away to create merit. While you are still well, do this powa practice.

In the beginning, what you do again and again, is imagine your consciousness going from your
heart to throat and throat to crown, and the crown is blocked. Then you go down again, and
then up, from the heart to throat and crown. Again and again, while your consciousness is still
complete. Then in the case where you've been, for example, practicing on the basis of
Amithaba, you send your consciousness from heart to throat to crown, and then the
consciousness dissolves into the heart of Amithaba, without thinking the consciousness comes
down again.

Transference depending upon some other method. This is something that would be done for
a person before they die, when it's clear they are going to die. When the dissolution of the
elements has just begun, when they can still see. Showing them the images of holy beings and
images of Buddhas or great gurus. Showing them very important texts such as the Great
Exposition of the Stages of the Path, Vajra Cutter Sutra, Sutra of Golden Light.

Also, reminding them of refuge and bodhicitta. If they have the habit of refuge, remind them of
refuge. If they have the habit of bodhicitta, remind them of bodhicitta. If they don't have such
familiarity you won't be able to remind them, of course.

Also, reciting the name of, for example, Medicine Buddha, Migtrupa, Om Mani Padme Hum, the
long Chenrezig Mantra. These have the power of transferring the person to a pure land. Also
the Pem Unica mantra in the ear of the person.

At the time of the subtle death mind about to happen, you can put a holy object on the crown of
that person's head, like a stupa or a statue. This also can bring about transference into a pure

At the time of the subtle mind of death, pulling some hair from the crown of the head helps the
consciousness go out the crown of the head and to a pure land. Doing this after the clear light of
death is too late, the consciousness is already gone.

If you have some blessed substances you can mix those in with powdered magnet and stick it
on the crown of the person's head which helps with transference to a pure land. Mix it with a
little alcohol, beer.

Transference of consciousness by reciting certain profound mantras. Reminding the

person who's dying to think of refuge and bodhicitta or their own training - you couldn't do this
for animals, but the others you could.

If you're going to do the transference, powa, with the first and the last methods (done by
someone else and being reminded of refuge) you can't be sure that there will be somebody that
will be there for you. But if there is someone there, there's no doubt you'd be able to go on to a
birth of high status. However, there's no certainty that you would be able to achieve a special
kind of birth of high status where you could practice dharma. Like in the case of doing these
practices for animals - they would go on to a birth as a human being or god, but there's no

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 63 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

certainty they would get a special birth where they would practice dharma. So of these three,
being able to do training yourself is the most important.


Q: Can one keep the tummo fire going constantly once ignited?

Actually, the fire wouldn't blaze constantly, because, like for example when you are doing your
deity practice, you absorb everything including the central channel. When you're meditating on
tummo, making it ignite, then the fire should be very subtle. If it's a big one there's a risk it will
become ordinary heat. This can cause illnesses. A flame as fine as a needle. The heat should
be just a slight heat coming from inside, something that's difficult to generate. A big heat, like
one that fills the whole stomach, is not a good one. The heat wouldn't stay constantly. And
there's no particular purpose in it being there constantly. There's a purpose to generating inner
heat when meditation on the channels, and so forth. There's no particular benefit to have it
remain constantly.

Q: When the light returns from special blazing through the left nostril how does it go to the
crown chakra?

You send the light out through the right nostril, make offerings to the Buddhas, it comes back
trough the left nostril, it goes into the central channel at the third eye point where all three are

Q: Is it better to do friend powa right at the outer breath ceasing and carry on for as long as
person remains? Or wait until the end of the dissolution process?

You should do it when the person has reached the subtle death mind. If you do it after it's too
late, and before it would be killing a sentient being. Do it after the person has stopped breathing.
The time of clear light is also not too late.

7:30pm Lorne
[channels, syllables]

Guhyasamaja is called the Arya tradition because it comes from Aryadeva and his teacher
Nagarjuna. Aryadeva says:

The human mind, like a variegated jewel,

takes on the nature of whatever it encounters.
Therefore, by transforming all this to the distinctive,
due to this the distinctive result will emerge.
Birth is called superficial reality,
the name for death is ultimate reality;
who finds those two processes by the grace of their guru is a future Buddha.

The communion of those two realities, inexpressible,

without distinction between the two, two names ultimately only the same.
The one who knows that will be liberated from bondage.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 64 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

If someone falls from the peak of the king of mountains,
even if they don't want to plummet they will.
If you gain the beneficial verbal transmission by the grace of your guru,
even if you don't want to be liberated, you will.

The six yogas of Naropa integrates mother tantra (tummo) and illusory body and clear light from
Guhyasamaja. In the Vajrayana tradition LTK was extremely kind in clarifying the illusory body.
There are sequential isolation in the Guhyasamaja tantra, arising in the impure illusory body,
meaning clear light. Mother tantras like Chakrasamvara don't have that language.

Tummo is the light of the path in the six yogas of Naropa. It's the method.

Rinpoche said tummo carries you all the way to mind isolation. Tummo itself can take you to the
level of speech isolation. Its purpose is to give rise to the four blisses. Those then can take you
to the level of mind isolation.

There are different degrees to which the winds enter the central channel.

What really matters is to ignite it correctly, with that subtle thin flame inside the central channel,
and proceed slowly to learn. It's not easy. There's no way around developing concentration,

Thursday, December 8
7am Rene
[*nature of mind and six session]

The clear and knowing nature of the mind is permanent, feels permanent. As long as the mind is
there, its qualities are clear and knowing. Like the nature of fire to burn - as long as fire is there
its qualities are heat, warmth. The mind itself is not permanent, it is made of moments of
awareness, and there are objects of awareness. The objects change, and the moments can be
subdivided into smaller and smaller moments. That is the empty nature of the mind.

If you see bliss and emptiness everywhere, you don't need to see deities and mandalas (Sogyal
Rinpoche). The visualization is a means to an end, to realize that everything is light energy,
bliss and empty.

Two ways to arise as deity (Vajrasattva):

1. Space (of mind), bliss, emptiness, Dharmakaya

Focus on the space of mind, its blissful nature, see those as empty, and this is Dharmakaya

2. Space (of mind), emptiness, bliss, Dharmakaya

ocus on the mind that is empty is the nature of bliss, and this is the Dharmakaya

There are two blisses:

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 65 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

The bliss of calm abiding (1) and the bliss that cognizes emptiness (2)

10am Rinpoche
Questions: How do you come to understand the illusory body?

It means you've learned about it, studied it, and come to the point of thinking this is how it
seems to be. Like if you've been studying Guhyasamaja teachings, understanding the isolations
of body, speech, and mind, etc.

The intermediate state body is used as an example, a metaphor or analogy, for the illusory
body. We also speak of the dream body. When you sleep you have the clear light of sleep. In
lighter sleep you have the dream body, you go here and there, you do this and that. Just like
that, after the clear light of death, we arise in the bardo body, which means the wind which is the
mount of the clear light mind under the control of karma and afflictions becomes the
intermediate state body. Like that, through meditating on the exalted wisdom of nondual bliss
and emptiness, just like from the clear light body you have the bardo body, you have the illusory
body arising arising from the clear light for a being [who has realized emptiness and practiced to
attain this body.]

When we sleep, the dream body is apart from the gross body. That subtle body comes and
goes and does this and that. Right after the clear light of death you have the intermediate state
body. Of course it doesn't go back into the old body afterwards. When the yogini has mediated
on this exalted wisdom of nondual bliss and emptiness, which is the nondual clear light, after
this the illusory body forms, the air which is the mount of the wisdom of nondual bliss and
emptiness becomes that body. In this case the illusory body does go back into the old body.
Otherwise the process is about the same.

One line of reasoning to establish the validity of the illusory body is that the subtle wind or air
which is the mount of the clear light of death which is under the control of karma and kleshas
becomes the subtle body which is the bardo body. Of course, if someone, through the force of
their meditation, is able to make the airs enter, abide, and absorb into the central channel, of
course the airs will become a subtle body, illusory body, the mount of the clear light mind of the
meditator, achieved through meditation.


In general there are nine doors from which the consciousness can leave the body. The best is
the crown. Leaving through the crown achieves a good birth for practicing tantra. For this
reason, when people do powa practices it always involves sending one's consciousness
through the crown of one's head.

There are five middling places to exit: between the eyebrows, eyes, navel, ears, and nose. By
leaving through the forehead aperture, you are born as a form realm god. Leaving through the
eyes, you are born as a human. Leaving through the navel, you become one of the desire realm
gods - six types. Leaving from the ears, you are born as an emanated god - a demigod. Leaving
through the nose leads to birth as a nujin[?].

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 66 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

The remaining three are consciousness leaving from the urethra, mouth, and anus. By the
consciousness leaving the urethra you go on to birth as an animal; from the mouth a preta; from
the anus to a hell realm.

I said earlier that in the six yogas of Naropa, the bardo and entering another body comes from a
tantra called The Four Seats (Dentra) and also the Sambota. There's a tantra called the
Domjung. That one's a little bit different from the other two and says if the consciousness leaves
from the crown of the head then you're born in the formless realm. There's one other difference.
The Four Seats says that by leaving through the ears you become a demigod. The Domjung
says you become a sentient being called a myamchi.

When you're doing the powa practice you have to block the other eight gates and focus on the
crown at the top of the head, which is called the golden gate, because it's the best of the gates.

Before doing this powa practice, what you need to think is, I could die any time, so I have to
practice powa now. Then, rather than doing powa practice immediately, first what you should do
is spend a few days meditating on the topics of the common path: death, precious human
rebirth / leisures and endowments, suffering of the lower realms; then the practices in common
with the person of middling capabilities: renunciation; then love, compassion, bodhicitta.

Further, with the renunciation, it is produced by thinking of the eight, six, and three sufferings,
and come to see the faults of cyclic existence, and have no interest in any of the wonders of
samsara. Through reflecting on those you see that there's no real happiness in cyclic existence
- a little contaminated happiness, but no real happiness. Depending upon that thought - wanting
to achieve liberation - that is renunciation; but when that thought comes day and night, always
wanting to achieve liberation, always thinking when will I be free from cyclic existence, then you
have uncontrived renunciation. And then through the force of that wish to achieve liberation you
engage in the practice of the three higher trainings, for the person of middling capability: love,
compassion, great view.

And then, especially, one should practice guru yoga, collecting, and purifying. Guru yoga is
done in order to receive the blessings. Collecting means gathering the collections - collecting
merit. Purifying means purifying one's wrongdoings. Seven limbed practice includes all of that.
When you make prostrations it not only accumulates merit but purifies past wrongdoings;
offering creates merit; confessing purifies; when you rejoice you collect merit; imploring to turn
the wheel of dharma is accumulating merit, likewise using the merit field not to enter into
nirvana, not to pass away. And dedication.

After that you do the air vase, you practice that seriously and well. By doing that you make the
airs go into the central channel, bringing together the upper and lower airs. That will stop the
airs from going through the other eight doors. Then train yourself well in tummo yoga.

As I mentioned before, the highest or supreme powa is transference to the clear light - the
meaning clear light. The middling one is transference to the illusory body - the impure illusory
body which comes before the meaning clear light. For completion stage meditations the
supreme method is meditating on tummo yoga. When you want to do powa practice the best is
when you've done tummo yoga, then do the actual powa transference practice.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 67 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

There are two ways of training in powa. One is taught in the Four Seats Tantra which is a
method dependent upon Yeshe Kandroma. The other is taught in a tantra called Punzang. That
tantra teaches the powa as an answer taught in response to a request by a person named
Punzang and teaches powa dependent upon guru yoga.

To do this powa according to the first practice, you need to be in an isolated place and sit either
in the vajra posture or knees up with the meditation belt around your back. Then you go for
refuge, generate bodhicitta, do the instantaneous generation as Yeshe Kandroma - three heads,
six arms, white in color.

You are visualizing yourself as Yeshe Kandroma, and thinking at your heart is the letter HUM,
and from it light radiates out and brings back infinite Yeshe Kandromas inseparable from your
guru. They abide in front of you and you make limitless offerings to them. The offerings you can
make: argham, padyam, etc.

Having made offerings you then do the practice called the Seven Pure Practices, which you find
in the tantric teachings. When doing this practice you can actually take the bodhisattva vows at
this time: refuge, confession, rejoicing, wishing bodhicitta, engaging bodhicitta, bodhisattva
conduct, dedication.

Having invoked the merit field and made offerings and done this seven part practice, the merit
field is extremely happy with you, and as a consequence of that they all dissolve into you and
your body speech and mind are blessed by them.

These seven pure practices are included with an offering, like the offering of one's practice.

What you've imagined then is that they've all dissolved into you and the three doors of body,
speech and mind have been blessed (meaning transformed). At the moment our body speech
and mind are impure, unsubdued. To be blessed means they become the vajra holy body, vajra
holy speech, and vajra holy mind. Our ordinary holy speech and mind become transformed into
the three vajras. Jinyelub: the jin refers to blessing and lub to transformation.

That's the accumulation of merit. For the accumulation of exalted wisdom you recite OM
emptiness. By doing that you collect wisdom. Out of that deep meditative equipoise on
emptiness you appear in the form of Yeshe Kandroma with three faces and six arms, white in

She has six arms. The three right hold an arrow, hook and vajra. The three left arms: one holds
a noose/lasso at the heart, one a wish fulfilling tree, and the last a bow: the left holds a bow, the
right holds an arrow. She's seated in the sattva position, just like Green Tara, the right leg
outstretched and the left pulled in.

You meditate on your body just like in the hollow body meditation, like a rainbow: transparent
and having the quality that, just like a rainbow, if you go to touch it there's nothing to touch. You
can walk through it. Just like the hollow body meditation.

Then, having done that hollow body meditation, with your body straight, you imagine the three
channels, the central channel, left, and right, the lower end four fingers below the navel, the
upper at the Brahma aperture, the crown of your head. And then meditate on the four chakras
just like the tummo meditation.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 68 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

At the crown you have the letter CUO: KA atop SHALU atop SHAPYU, the whole thing topped
with a circle. That letter CUO blocks the crown aperture and below that the letter HUM. You're
meditating on yourself hollow, so you have a hole at the top of the central channel blocked by
CUO and below that HUM, and underneath that a HUM at the center of the great bliss chakra at
the crown. All three of these are upside down, pointing downwards towards the heart.

Of the other nine apertures: the door at the center of the forehead has the letter HUM blocking
it. At the two eyes you have the letter HUM also blocking. The two ears and the two nostrils
each has the letter YUM - YA atop SHAPYU with a circle on top making it YUM. At the tip of the
tongue you have a SA with a SHAPYU underneath and a circle on top. At the throat you have a
RU, RA with a SHAPYU underneath. At the navel aperture you have four letters stacked up just
like in the Kalachakra mantra: SA, underneath that MA, underneath that RA, underneath that
YA, and atop it all a circle. Then you have the apertures at the anus and urethra; you have a
stacked MA, MA, RA, LA, and at the very top a circle.

All of these letters are white in color. Each of the letters is also radiating light thickly. Don't think
that there's space around the letter, but that the light around each letter completely blocks each

Now there is the donning of the armor. In the past, when people went to war they would put on
armor to protect themselves from weapons. At each of your shoulders you have a stack of four
letters: HA, MA, YA, RA, SHAPYU, topped by a circle. Then at the heart, you have four letters
stacked top to bottom: YA, MA, RA, YA, SHAPYU, topped by a circle. Meditate on these as
white colored radiating light, standing up.

Now remember that with the four chakras you have the heart and navel chakra bending directly
towards each other, and likewise the crown and the throat. Just underneath the heart chakra
you have the mandala of the life holding air. That mandala is the size of a half pea. That
mandala is a moon cushion the size of half a pea, with a HUM, which is your consciousness
upside down hanging from it.

Below that is the letter HI also upside down, and to the right and left the letters YUM. down the
bottom of the HUM you have the SHAPYU, you have a KA, and to the right and left of that the
two letters YUM. All of these letters are blue and upside down.

The significance of the four letters YUM is because the YUM is the seed syllable of air, and
because you are utilizing the air, so you think that these four YUMs are like the air element in
the four directions. As for the HI and KA, the HI is for when the consciousness is being sent up
and the KA for when the consciousness is being sent down.

To clarify, you have the HI and KA. and the HUM is tour consciousness, so it goes up with the
letter HI and down with the letter KA.

Now you need to do the practice of holding air. You think that at your navel chakra there is a red
letter HAM, right side up. You have the letter AH, on top of that the circle, red in color.

The twenty four places on the body are, at the hairline Pullyarama, etc. [like body armor in
Heruka, see next session]

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 69 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

2pm Lorne
Some of us have received simpler visualization on powa. But this is one of the source tantras,
from the original tantra the way it's performed. Whether you do this one or a simpler one, that's
what Rinpoche gives as a gift: presenting in a complete way, the way the Buddha taught. To
understand the incredible sublime complex way the practice was taught. Whatever version you
practice, knowing the elaborate version deepens and appreciates our understanding.

Q: I can visualize but I'm always seeing from the level of my eyes!

We're used to that. It's what we're familiar with. Forget about your ordinary appearance. One
thing that can help is going back to emptiness.

Khensur Rinpoche emphasizes going slowly.

3:30pm Rinpoche
The 24 places:

1. At the hairline Pullirmalaya

2. At the crown Jalandhara
3. At the right ear Odiyana
4. At the neck Arbuta
5. At the left ear Godavari
6. At the brow Rameswar
7. At the the two eyes Devikoti
8. At the two shoulders Malaya
9. At the two armpits Kamarupa
10. At the two breasts Otri
11. At the navel Trishakuni
12. At the tip of the nose Kosala
13. At the mouth Kalinga
14. At the throat Lampaka
15. At the heart Kanchira
16. At the two testicles Himalaya
17. At the sex organ Pretapuri
18. At the anus Grihadevata
19. At the thighs Saurashtra
20. At the calves Suvarnadvipa
21. At the 16 fingers and toes Nagara
22. At the tops of the feet Sindura
23. At the two thumbs and two big toes Maru
24. At the two knees Kuluta

We already placed the letter at the heart chakra. We have that HAM at the navel that sends out
light to the 24 places, the pervasive air, called the inner air, that's in the 24 places of the body
and bringing the airs back means bringing back the pervasive air, which is the inner air. By
breathing in through the two nostrils and bringing the air down to the navel and bringing the airs
slightly up and tightening the lower doors, that's bringing the outer airs to the navel.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 70 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

The inner airs are hooked to the HAM letter by its sending out light to those places, hooking the
airs back and they dissolve back into the letter, similar to tummo practice. The outer airs are
brought to the HAM by breathing in, and up through the lower doors, and absorb, and you hold
the vase there.

You shouldn't do this forcefully, you should do it gently. Hold it in the beginning to the point
where it's not quite uncomfortable, and then let go. Through the force of repeating the practice
gradually you'd be able to hold it longer and longer.

Here they talk of the vase breath which you hold for 144 snaps of the finger, 36 Vajrayogini
mantras, etc. there's the great one (144), the middling one (72), and the small one (36), which
would be pretty amazing already! Measuring in terms of Vajrayogini mantra - that's maybe 5-7
repetitions ordinarily. But if you practice you'll be able to hold longer.

Having done this practice, the next thing in the meditation is thinking the air at the navel causes
the fire to blaze. The letter HAM at the navel is in the nature of fire, the airs cause the HAM to
blaze. The heat from that reaches the HUM at the heart, which is in the center of the heart
chakra, and then there are the four YUMs surrounding it, above the HI and KA below, and all of
this upside down. All of those including the moon, everything turns the right way up.

That heat causes them to turn the right way up. The main letter is the HUM which is the mind. At
the crown you have the CHU blocking the aperture. Now the HUM surrounded by the other
letters goes up to the crown.

Then that HUM and the other letters with the air mandala they all come down to the heart again
and face downwards. Again you do the vase breath and by holding the vase the fire blazes and
this causes the letter HUM along with the air mandala to turn the right way up again and go up
to the crown. You do that about twenty-one times.

Now, at the end of that, having done it twenty-one times, the knots at the heart and crown
chakra release. Now when the HUM and the other letters are going up to the crown you actually
say AH-I (ah-ee), and the air doesn't come out with the CK sound. Then as it's coming down
you recite KA-I (kah-ee).

This is to be done in connection with breathing in and out. Breathing out you recite AH-I,
sending the letters up to the crown, and the air shouldn't go out through the mouth, although
you are saying the mantra out loud. Then when you are breathing in, that's when you send them
back down again, back to the heart. As you're breathing out you have the flame from the navel,
it reaches the letters at the heart. Because of that they move up to the crown. When you're
breathing in they come down again, reciting KA-I, turning downwards again towards the navel.

So that's how you do the powa practice when you're training. Keep doing that until you start to
get certain signs. In the beginning the body becomes warm. And then the body feels kind of
light. Foods that you'd normally find difficult to digest you find easy to digest. You start to feel
heat around the end of the central channel, the crown. It starts to feel a little bit itchy and soft.
And you start to get a swelling, then a blister begins to form because of the heat, like from a hot
water burn. That's the sign of having trained well in powa practice. Keep doing it up until you get
those signs.

Once you have got those signs, with the beginning of a blister forming, from then onwards, in
order not to forget how to do it, each month you can again visualize the channels, the letters,

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 71 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

hold the vase, the flame from tummo comes up and hits the letters of the heart, almost touching,
not quite touching the crown.

Then you would need to train in this practice up until you get those signs. If you keep going after
that, what can happen is that you lose consciousness. Then, somebody who's assisting you
would put a torma in a precious container, e.g. made of copper, and they would say KA. Your
assistant would massage the soles of your feet and by doing that the person would be revived.

And then at the end, when you have seen the signs of impending death - you know you are
really going to die - you relinquish all attachment to your body, friends, and possessions. You
meditate on the guru. You do this practice as before, but you would only recite AH-I - only bring
it up, and not say KA-I. Then you visualize a new HUM at the heart and other letters and again
through holding the vase at the navel the fire at the AM causes this new copy of heart letters to
go up to the crown, and you keep doing this again and again.

So you would do that twenty-one times, and then, up until now the aperture at the crown was
blocked with the letter CHA. Now five times recite AH-I again. Visualize your guru at your crown
in the aspect of Yeshe Kandroma. And it's like your central channel is joined with the central
channel of Yeshe Kandroma. And with the last of these five rounds think that your
consciousness has gone up to the heart of your guru. And the guru goes to a pure land taking
you with him or her.

That concludes the explanation of how you do the transference according to the Four Seats


Next there is the tantra taught in response to the question of Punzang. There it is taught that
doing the following practice in the moment of death is the supreme transference.

This involves meditating on one's guru and your special deity. This tantra taught in reply to the
question of Punzang was taught on the basis of Vajrabhairava. When you are first training, the
way that you sit as before can be either with the knees up or in the full lotus vajra posture. It's
acceptable to do this practice in a chair, or in the sattva posture like Tara.

Then you would recite the Sangye Chodang prayer which has refuge and bodhicitta, then
generate as Bhagavan Vajrabhairava, sit straight and meditate on the central channels. I forgot
to mention that the thickness of the central channel is as thick as an arrow at the center, the
ends normal width. The lower end is the same as before, and the upper end is at the crown and
this time you think the central channel is open like an aperture, unblocked.

Then, at the level of the heart inside the central channel, where you have the heart chakra, you
don't need to think about the heart chakra, you have the letter HUM, pale blue. If you think of
the color of Vajrabhairava, it's that kind of blue mixed with white. This is your mind in the aspect
of the letter HUM, just like a balloon ready to fly off with just the slightest amount of air.

Imagine at the crown of your head your guru in the form of Vajrabhairava. You think that your
guru in that aspect is the combination of all refuge objects. Just like in Lama Chopa practice: the
combination of all gurus, yidams, bodhisattvas, and everything. So the guru Vajrabhairava on
your head is the samaya / pledge being.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 72 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

You can either imagine that from the heart of Vajrabhairava on your head lights radiate out and
bring all the Buddhas and wisdom brings from all the pure lands in the form of Vajrabhairava, or
simply imagine that all of the Buddhas from everywhere are invited in the aspect of
Vajrabhairava and they all dissolve into the Vajrabhairava at one's head.

From the lower end of the central channel of the guru, again you can think the thickness of an
arrow, light is sent down from the crown, like a tube. Then, don't think about blocking all the
gates because there's only one place for the consciousness to go, up through the central
channel to the heart.

Then, having meditated in that way, you offer the seven limbs, just like Cittamani Tara practice -
one line for each or even more briefly like in King of Prayers:

May any small merits that have been amassed

By thus prostrating, making offerings, confessing, rejoicing,
And asking the Buddhas to remain and teach the Dharma
Be dedicated now to supreme and perfect enlightenment.

Having made all those offerings, you ask for something from the guru. The words in the text are
very nice. First of all there are four lines prostrating and paying homage to guru Yamantaka:

You are in essence the undeceiving three rare and sublime ones,
You're the one that saves from the lower realms,
You're the one that leads me to the pure land,
I prostrate to you Yamantaka.
If I'm not able to achieve that in this life,
May I go to the pure land.

Then you request guru Yamantaka to free you from the fears of death time, request the guru to
free you from the fearful state of the bardo, pray for the guru to free you from the unbearable
suffering of the lower realms, and you say:

There's no one else I can turn to,

Please take me to the pure land.

If you're not able to recite all that, then simply making the request:

Please free me from the lower realms,

All of cyclic existence,
You're the only one I can turn to,
Please lead me to the pure land.

Recite this again and again.

So you think, through the force of your requests the guru sends a hook of light from his heart,
down his central heart, down your central channel to your heart, and hooks the HUM and brings
it up to his heart. Then you breath in through your two nostrils, goes all the way down to the
central channel to the navel, and you pull a little bit of air from below through the lower doors,
and then again you hold the vase.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 73 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

Then from the HUM at your heart piles of light are sent out to the other eight gates, blocking
them. And so the light completely fills up the gates, completely sealed. The air from the navel
goes up and strikes the HUM which is your own mind, and that goes up to the crown of your
head. And then you pull up the lower airs, and as you're pulling up the lower airs you recite
EEK, and the letter HUM dissolves into the heart of the guru.

Your mind which is in the aspect of the letter HUM dissolves into the heart of the guru and then
with the recitation of KA it comes back down again. You do that twenty-one times.

Essentially there are two ways of doing powa transference according to Punzang based on
Yamantaka. One way is the one I've just been explaining where your central channel is joined to
the guru with the crown unblocked. The other way is similar to before with Yeshe Kandroma,
where the top of the crown is blocked with the CHU. Then you practice 21 times sending the
consciousness up and down to the crown. Then you get rid of the CHU and you do the recitation
and your consciousness only goes up. And with the fifth one you think that your mind in the
HUM goes up to the heart of the guru. It only goes up five times and the fifth time it merges with
the guru and the guru takes you to a pure land with him. The way to keep going with the training
is the same as before, until you get the signs, then stop. In order to not forget how to do the
practice you do it periodically.

Whether you're going to train for fifteen nights, with the guru on the crown of your head, you
can't go to bed with the guru on the top of your head, so recite precious guru please come to my
heart, like LTK practice, resting on your heart like a lotus that closes around him.


Q: How to attain enlightenment as a human?

By practicing tantra with a human body.

Q: Question about Amithaba powa, and is consciousness in the form of a letter when going up?

You can mediate on your consciousness in the aspect of a HUM, and the guru being in the form
of Amithaba with the channels merged.


You breath in and it goes down through the right and left channel and dissolves into the AH at
the navel and then the heat and the light go up from that and strike the HUM at the heart.

As you're breathing in, the sound of the OM is the in breath and the air strikes the indestructible
drop at your heart in the aspect of HUM and then with the sound of AH, you think that the airs
are remaining at the heart. This is in terms of your imagination. In actual fact the air wouldn't
remain at the heart. With the sound of HUM you think that the air leaves the heart again. You
don't need to visualize the right and left channels at all. Just think you are breathing through the
top nostrils and it goes into the central channel and straight to the heart.

Q: Can we do short sessions of tummo while standing in line or in the car?

Yes, especially if you think that in the context of practicing Yamantaka, you would arise as
Yamantaka with one face and two arms, so you're already in the form of the deity, thinking of

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 74 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

the central channel and the ATUNG at the navel. Otherwise, if the session has gone well and
you completely lose it, that's not good either. Good to increase familiarity.

Q: With the method of AH-I how does the consciousness rise five times?

Five repetitions all the way each time. But don't do this until you're ready to die!

Q: in the Vajrabhairava method after the hook pulls up the HUM does the light that closes the
other eight openings come from the heart of the guru or your heart?

This light comes from the vase breath and then that causes the fire of the tummo to blaze. Then
that heat reaches the HUM at the heart, and then because of that, the thick white light radiates
from the heart all over the body and closes the other eight doors, not the ninth: completely
sealed like plastering them over. You would do this before the guru sends down the light hook.
That practice of the hook coming down, you wouldn't do it when training. You always have the
CHU at the crown and think that it's blocked until you do the actual practice.

You would do the training until you get the signs. While you're training maybe you would do the
practice for a month, and then at that case, at the end of each day you'd bring the guru into the
heart asking the guru to remain in your heart, until you get the signs. Then, when you actually
do the practice, when you see the signs of death, there's the part of the practice where you think
five times your consciousness is going up into the heart of the guru and then the guru takes you
to a pure land, you just leave it like that.

Instead of reciting AH-I when it's going up and EEK when going down, you can say PE when
going up and GA going down.

Q: Do you wait to die after doing powa practice? Sometimes the signs of death come long
before dying?

This is similar to something that came up the other day. Remember we had the idea that you
start doing powa at time of death, but you could be revived. Just before dying, while you still
have awareness, that's when you should do this practice. Don't just sit around doing nothing
until the time of death; rather, create the support for the success of the powa practice by
purifying and collecting merit. Then just before death, while your awareness is still intact, then
do this practice. E.g. you could do the training three times a month.


When you are really doing the powa practice, just before losing awareness, that's when you do
the sending the consciousness up five times, and the fifth time the guru goes to the pure land
and you go with him. When you're sending the consciousness up again and again and not
bringing it down, you need something to concentrate on, so visualize the HUM at the heart.

Q: What do we do at the signs of memory loss and dementia?

Rather than waiting to stay for many years with awareness declining so you can't do the
practice, it would be better, if you have trained in the mind, to do the powa. You don't get the
karma of killing.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 75 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

Q: You never remove the CHU except at the time of death?


Q: Is one method more common or popular than another?

You wouldn't be able to say that, it depends on your deity. Whichever one you trained in, that's
the one you should practice at the time of transference.

Q: If you're doing CHU practice on a daily basis how does that reconcile with not doing the exit
from your crown until time of death?

This is a bit different. You have this illusory body practice in the CHU where you think the
consciousness separates from the body and makes offerings with the old body. Here it's like the
intermediate state. But you don't send your consciousness to a pure land, so there's no problem
with that.

Q: What would make you decide to use the powa practice rather than deity yoga at the time of

Well, for example, you could do the Vajrayogini practice, and within it is the inconceivable yoga
(common and uncommon). And the uncommon one is considered to be far superior to powa.
You think of yourself as Vajrayogini the size of a thumb at your heart, rise up, and all of your
body dissolves gradually from below upwards, then you imagine you go to the pure land. But
you're not leaving your body behind.

7:30pm Lorne
[*channels, syllables, special blazing]

A number of people asked how to find out about Khensur Rinpoche's teachings. Check the
various centers' websites. DNKL center - teachers a few times a year in Connecticut, and a
teaching in NYC once a year. Ask Tashi to be on the mailing list. Rinpoche has a house in San
Jose. Guhyasamaja Center in Washington, D.C. Teaching week of July 4 on Chandrakirti's
Madyamika Avatara. The most definitive text on emptiness by an Indian master. Starting a
series on Lojung at LMB December 18 and also Ocean of Compassion.

Vase breathing best to do on an empty stomach.

One cannot say that one has to combine vajra recitation and tummo.

Q: When obstacles arise?

This practice leads to enlightenment and you should expect hardships, so persevere.

Using tummo to heal obstacles that occur in the body:

If there's a cramped bent feeling in the body, it's often a sign for a cramped channel. One way to
heal is to send light and tummo from the short AH to straighten and open those channels.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 76 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

Sometimes one could have a wind imbalance, a sense of spinning, light, ungrounded. Then you
light the tummo and the tummo light rays hook those disordered winds and draws them back to
the short AH and dissolves them back into the tummo fire. Like mercury those upper winds that
are imbalanced dissolve into the short AH.

Through tummo practice sometimes you can have unusual appearances like seeing your central
channel eaten up like bugs, etc. That's ok - it's a sign of progress.

Through tummo there are many things you can do. You can cure diseases like asthma and
breathing disorders. Once you're good at tummo you can cure various diseases in your own
body, once you can have the tummo burn inside the central channel.

What Rinpoche was saying about the proof of the illusory body. At the time of death when all the
winds absorb into the indestructible drop in the heart chakra naturally due to the process of
karma there's an experience of the clear light of death. A natural result of that is that the person
arises in a bardo body that's made of the wind that's the mount of that clear light of death, due
to the force of karma and afflictions. That's a natural process that happens to everybody when
they die. And they experience the full fledged clear light.

So, if a yogi can cause that whole process to happen with a full fledged experience of clear light,
then if the person has the skill to do so, of course the mount of the winds arises as a body. But
that body is brought about intentionally through practice, not from the force of karma and
afflictions, because that yogi's mind is experiencing emptiness.

At that time there are no mental afflictions. The person's realizing emptiness. That body arises
from the intention of the yogi. It's a natural process of the ultimate clear light giving rise to a
subtle body. The difference between the impure illusory body and the pure illusory body is that
the latter comes from direct realization of emptiness. The most subtle life giving wind gives rise
to the most subtle body. They also call this the primordial body. The most subtle wind and the
most subtle mind are of one entity but we can conceptually separate them.

Books: The Treasury of the Six Yogas - Geshe Loden, Tsong Khapa's Six Yogas of Naropa -
Glen Mullin; Blazing Inner Fire of Bliss and Emptiness

LTK in Three Inspirations says if you really want to understand clear light illusory body, read the
five stages of Guhyasamaja. Emily recommends Daniel Cozort's Highest Yoga Tantra.

LTK really has a sense of humor.

Friday, December 8
7am Rene
[**three types of I, science fiction tips for completion stage meditation]

The three types of I:

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 77 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

• The conventional I is the mind at rest
• The inherently existing I is the mind engaging with thoughts and emotions
• The merely designated I is the mind labeled upon the space of consciousness and moments
of awareness

The light body we take is our true existence. It's already there. It's how the Buddhas see us.
As our yidam, complex, simple, or just a hollow body tinted with the color of our yidam.

In the completion stage of tantra you have these various chakras and they are kind of doors to
another dimension. If you go through the chakras you go through the eight visions, the clear
light, from the gross to subtle to very subtle body. When you go into this other dimensions it's
almost like you're Alice in Wonderland. You go through one door and on the other side it's
another dimension.

One way that's helpful is to imagine you're a spaceship and you enter through the door of the
chakra and all of a sudden everything accelerates. Suddenly time and space accelerates, like
the last scene in 2001, faster than the speed of light, everything changes, and you go through
the white, black, red visions and you end up in clear light. Or when starships in movies
accelerate faster than light, the stars going very fast.

If you just sit there and are outside, the impact is very little. But if you actually go there inside,
for example, the guru is in a sphere of light, like a spaceship. You follow him in there. A trick to
bring your mind in there, instead of being in your head looking down. Same thing with the
ATUNG, you have to trick your mind to actually go in there.

So imagine the guru in space, Vajradhara, he becomes very small. The size has to be
comfortable for you. If you make it too small your mind can't enter and follow it, and if it's too big
it doesn't fit in your body. Then follow it down and enter the door of your heart. And then the
space there transforms through white, red, black, clear light. Completely different dimension,
completely unknown, and then rest in that space.

Another trick, you see what's happened is that we have these five winds pervading our body
mind. In order to experience clear light you have to bring all these winds into the heart chakra.
Usually one does that through the force of concentration and blessings of the guru. You can
imagine the heart chakra is like a black hole in space (but a clear light point) that sucks all the
energy in there. When you follow that you go in there and you let all your wind mind go there
into that door in your heart. So you follow your guru in there. He's leading you into your heart
through the three visions and clear light.

Imagine that the guru comes down your central channel and leads you through white
appearance, red increase, black near attainment, clear light. Your concentration and wind
energy all go there. The more you suck all the energy following your guru into your heart the
stronger your visions will become. It's a matter of how much energy of your concentration you
can bring in. Now, maybe one percent of your concentration goes there. You need to bring ten,
twenty, ninety percent of your energy mind wind there. The more you bring the stronger your
vision will become.

Make prayer to the guru to guide you to the clear light and come into the drop at your heart and
bring all your energy mind in there.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 78 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

The mind has become infinite, there is no up down left right, you have no location with that

How to eat: Imagine your guru in your heart and when you eat you make offerings to your guru
and thus eating becomes a method for accumulating merit.

10am Rinpoche

Once you've trained in the powa practice, if you do the practice for others what you do is
imagine hooking their consciousness. If their body and consciousness are still there, visualize
hooking their consciousness. On the basis of Yamantaka, you would generate their body as
Yamantaka, just like generating yourself as Yamantaka. Then you visualize the central channel
with the HAM at the navel. Then you hook their consciousness in the form of the letter HUM.
And so you would do the blazing and dripping from the tummo practice. With the HAM at the
navel and HUM at the heart, you do the vase meditation. This doesn't have to be on the base of
Yamantaka, it could be Yeshe Kandroma, Vajrayogini, or others. Practice as described before
with refuge, generation, etc. visualize the same tummo for the dying person, imaging their
consciousness in the central channel at their heart in the form of the letter HUM, pale blue in
color, on the verge of being hooked.

You are visualizing yourself in the form of Yamantaka, and likewise you generate the body of
the deceased in the form of Yamantaka. And you imagine the guru Yamantaka on the crown of
the deceased. You would be visualizing that light from Yamantaka's heart comes down from
their crown and strikes the heart of the deceased. Just like you visualize doing the vase for
yourself, you visualize the deceased doing the vase practice, sending the HUM up, then you
either do this until signs happen or you imagine that the signs happen. The signs would be
movement in the body or blood coming from the crown of the head. Once the signs have come,
you have air striking the tummo increasing its heat, and the heat rises to the heart, and the
HUM, which is their consciousness, moves up. Keep doing that up and down, up and down.
When the signs happen you don't visualize going up and down but just going up.

We have the talk of signs when you are doing the practice (itchy head and so forth) and signs
when you are doing the meditation for the other person. You shouldn't be doing the practice for
yourself or else you might end up transferring! The sign is the body moving, the blood coming
from the crown. That's when to do the hooking of the consciousness for the person.

Now if you're going to do the transference for yourself, then you need to know the signs of
impending death. There are different signs: outer and inner. Outer signs manifest in the body,
mind, and dreams. There are inner signs as well. One would be the sign of the air going in and
out of the nostrils - the reverse of what was described before. Having the air come more out of
the left nostril for first through third periods, then through the right for fourth through sixth would
be one sign.

For the outer signs, one outer sign (that you'll die in seven days) is, when you look at your
reflection in a mirror through the left eye you can't see the reflection, but you can through the

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 79 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

right. One sign is that, normally you can see your shadow in the water and mirror, but you
wouldn't see your shadow in the water or a mirror.

Then, at night, if you see a rainbow and other people can't see the rainbow, that would be
another sign. Another would be seeing lots of stars during the daytime, or seeing flashes of
lightning in the south when there are no clouds. When there is a sort of whitish color when you
look up and the stars are shining brightly and the weather is very clear, if you see that during the
daytime that is also a sign of death approaching. The Tibetan word for it is gutziggyamo. Gu is
like number 9 in Tibetan, Tzig is Tshig, Gya Mo.

Another sign of death is if you see a swan, a raven, and a peacock in one place together. One
would be seeing the sun and the moon at the same time. Another sign would be the body
suddenly shivering, tremors. Also losing consciousness. Another would be a black kind of image
or design in the middle of your tongue. Also the teeth chattering. Another one would be wrinkles
on your forehead disappearing naturally. Another one is if you poke your tongue out and you
can't see it (like you usually can).

Normally when you rub your hands you can hear something, but if you can't that's another sign.
Normally if you go ha on your hand it warms up; if that doesn't happen that's another sign.
Although you aren't ill, if you're unable to move your tongue that's a sign you will die in ten days.
Another sign is whether you look at the sun or the moon there seems to be a hole at the middle.
Another sign of death is if you see a black mark appearing at the base of the ring finger. Another
is when the feces become white like silver or yellow like gold. When you go to the bathroom you
have to examine!

Another sign would be, normally, if you tread in mud a footprint remains, but instead the
footprint doesn't remain. Likewise if you walk in dust usually a footprint is left behind, but a sign
of death is no footprint left behind. Or just half a footprint in the dust or mud.

It mentions lots of signs in this text. The main signs are the inner signs. Usually, in any lunar
month, on the first through third of the month the breath would go through the left nostril fourth,
fifth, sixth; then from the right, seven, eight, nine. Now, on the first of the month, one and a half
hours from the morning the breath is going from the left nostril. It's important to understand
these signs so you know when to get ready for transference.


Q: When is the morning?

When the sun becomes a little bit white - dawn. These days it would be around 5am.

Q: When doing powa for the person, do you visualize yourself outside the person? And the color
of the HUM?

Your mind wouldn't enter or merge into the HUM - the consciousness of the dead person. What
you're doing is that you're doing the vase breathing, and through the force of that the heat
increases, the tummo fire blazes, and you imagine that their tummo fire blazes. They're not
doing it themselves, they've never trained in the powa, the flame blazes, the HUM rises up, and
so forth.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 80 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

For the color of pale blue, if you think of the colors of the faces of Guhyasamaja, the central face
is pale blue. Dark blue with a little bit of white mixed in.

In the beginning the HUM is upside down, also the heart chakra is upside down, and then
through the force of heat rising and tummo, it turns the right way up.

Q: Enlightenment in this life - what are the six elements?

You need to have the basis of a human form with the six elements: three from mother (flesh,
skin, blood), three from father (bones, marrow, and white bodhicitta). What happens is that you
have the liquid from the father, the blood from the mother - these two combine, then the
consciousness of the intermediate state being enters into that. Then the substance of the father
gradually becomes the three from the father, and that from the mother, the mother elements.

Q: Has the person already died?

The person has died, the consciousness has gone somewhere else, you're hooking the
consciousness back into the body that has been generated as Yamantaka and then you do the

Q: What about if the person was a highest yoga tantra practitioner and you are doing a different
deity practice for them?

When we do powa for somebody else it's only for ordinary people. It would be unsuitable to do
powa for someone who is not an ordinary person. Although it can be hidden whether a person is
a practitioner or not. Like, for example, the monks and nuns are considered to be dharma
practitioners, so there's not really a tradition of doing powa for them. Generally the powa
practice for others is for people headed for the lower realms. Otherwise there's not really a
custom of doing this for other people.

In the case where holy beings and lamas passed away you could do their deity practice in order
to remind them of the practice.

Remember the three levels of transference. The best is transference into clear light, the
middling transference into the illusory body, and the least - there are many - e.g. transference
via substances.

Remember we were saying the best type of powa is the one you yourself do, since you can't be
sure you'll find someone to do the powa for you, much less remind you of your refuge, holy
images, etc. Really the best is if you've cultivated going for refuge and bodhicitta during your
life, those habits are the most important. If you die with bodhicitta there's no way you'd be born
in the lower realms. I was mentioning there was this passage in the tantra in response to the
question of Punzang. Usually you have this practice of meditating on bodhicitta - it makes your
mind happy, makes you physically healthy, and makes sure that, at the time of death, you go on
to a good, favorable, human life. Refuge and bodhicitta are very important.

We can recite the Sangye Chodang prayer and imagine offering, scattering very beautiful
flowers and think, may I receive enlightenment for any sentient being. And when you see any

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 81 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

sentient being think may I attain enlightenment for this sentient being. When you have refuge
and bodhicitta it's quite easy to get the tantric realizations.

The root of everything is your mind. If you have a good heart everything becomes good. When
you don't have such a good heart nothing really works out. LTK writes, if your mind is good,
then your level and your path will be good; if your mind is bad then your mind and your path will
also be bad. Bodhicitta is the good heart.

When Dromtonpa was passing away his head rested in the lap of Geshe Potawa. When
Dromtonpa became aware of that he said, "There's no need to be sad, just have a good heart,
meditate on bodhicitta and you'll meet me again." Atisha, whenever he met someone, he used
to say, "Did you have a good heart?"

Really, refuge and bodhicitta are the best, the easiest things for us to do. We haven't trained in
powa so this is something we can do easily. Of course all these powa practices are wonderful.
Of course generating real bodhicitta is difficult, but we can meditate on it all the time, when
we're eating, etc. Even the fabricated kind of bodhicitta has limitless benefits. Of course, when
you take the bodhisattva vows, it's best to have real bodhicitta, but even just the fabricated kind
of bodhicitta has so many benefits.

Q: If you are ejecting your consciousness is there a best day or time of day?

No, once the time is right you just do the practice.

Q: How would you know if you are able to do powa or if this is the right time?

If you have trained in the powa and you got the signs - itchy crown, blister, soft - that's when
you'd stop doing the training. Then do it periodically to sustain it, and then you'd do it when the
time comes.

It's extremely important to cut through your attachment to any of your wealth and possessions,
body, and friends; to abandon that and get rid of any kind of attachment. Use your possessions
for the sake of dharma. If you don't cut through your attachment, even if you've trained in powa
you won't be able to transfer.

You have the signs in the body, the signs that come when you've trained well, warmth rising in
the body, the body feeling light, whatever you eat or drink being easy to digest, itchy crown, soft,
blister forming. This is a sign your consciousness is really ready to leave.

Q: The pure land seems so unfamiliar, and our world is familiar. It's frightening to give up
something we know.

There are so many different pure lands such as Kechara pure land. Manifest Joy, Joyful One
(Dewachen). If you think about the way things are in those pure lands you do get some kind of
image, Sukavati in the western direction of Dewachen. The qualities are like the prayer we
recite: the ground is very pure and free from thorns, etc. When you recite that prayer you think
that where you are is a pure land and you train your mind.

A pure land is not something we actually see with our eyes, but you can come to an inferential
understanding as to the existence of such a place. A pure land is the product of the
accumulation of the two types of collection. How we can infer the existence of such a place: we

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 82 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

know there are impure lands that appear to us due to karma and afflictions, just like that we can
understand that though the force of merit and collections there can be put lands.

Lorne 2pm
[extraordinary blazing]

During the extraordinary blazing and dripping there's a point where light goes out from the AH
after the little flame. "Your entire body and mind are affected by that light and heat. They soften
you and make you very effective and pliant." -Rinpoche

Rinpoche emphasizes the Extraordinary Blazing as the best method. It's not even taught or
documented much. In general at home, spend more time on the short AH.

Rinpoche 3:30pm
Maybe I won't explain the practice of how to enter into another person's body. It's said that the
instruction on this particular practice has been broken - the lineage has been broken.


Before you do the Six Yogas of Naropa, a preliminary practice for that would be to recite the
Vajrasattva mantra 100,000 times. The common or ordinary preliminary practices for the six
yogas are: reflecting on the common path; for the unique preliminary practices you have to
engage in the generation stage; and then specifically Vajrasattva meditation and recitation, and
guru yoga.

You would need to have received an Anuttara empowerment with the four empowerments and
have received a commentary on the six yogas. Then if you're a Vajrayogini practitioner you
generate yourself as Vajrayogini. Alternatively you can do the self generation, the sadhana, and
when you get to the end you gather everything up and you have the instantaneous generation of
the deity. Then you imagine the PAM at your head becomes a lotus and Vajrasattva (don't think
the one in the sadhana can be done instead) and at the end of the recitation you recite: all of
these mistakes I have made out of ignorance... and then Vajrasattva dissolves and you
generate the guru on your head.

According Chalgyen Gyatso you need to do Vajrasattva, guru yoga, nine round breathing, then
perform the vase breathing, and on that basis, while holding the vase, if you had the instructions
you'd be able to do the exercises here, but it's not obligatory. For these exercises there are 32
exercises, or talk of the six exercises of Naropa. Dubchen Palmadrupa also talks about six:
revolving like a wheel and so forth.

And so, it's quite ok not to do those exercises. If somebody is really practicing on completion
stage, then you would do these exercises for a month. The point is you would do them until the
body is flexible. People such as ourselves there's no real need to do these exercises, so next
you would:

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 83 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

1. Meditate on the hollow body, which is quite straightforward: like a rainbow, it doesn't
obstruct. If you include hollow body there are eight steps.
2. Then you visualize the channels
3. Training in the pathway of the channels
4. Visualizing the chakras

When you talk about the hollow body (tong ra in relation to the body, there is also tong ra in
relation to the channels - think of the four attributes: very clear, bright, straight, soft and pliant,
red and bright, glistening red).


I think it would be good to explain a little about the Vajrasattva meditation and recitation. There
are two ways - just with the father, or with the father and mother together. Just the father you
find in the lower classes of tantra. By practicing the Vajrasattva meditation and recitation with
just the father that purifies the broken samaya only in relation to the three lower classes of
tantra. It doesn't purify the faults of broken samaya in relation to highest yoga tantra. In order to
purify those you definitely need to practice with Vajrasattva father and mother in union. That's
able to purify all downfalls.

For the meaning of the mantra:

• You start off with Om Vajrasattva. Om can refer downwards to our body speech and mind that
need to be purified. Sattva means heroic minded. Samaya manupalaya - samaya means
pledge, manupalaya means to guide me. What that means is that all enlightened beings,
when they are training on the path, make the pledge to achieve enlightenment for all sentient
beings; liberate all sentient beings and guide them to happiness; make infinite prayers to all
sentient beings. Just like you made the promise at that time, please remember your pledge
and accordingly please guide me.
• Denopatita means you are addressing Vajrasattva and saying please be close to me, in the
sense of being very happy with me, or close in the sense of making me achieve enlightenment
very quickly.
• Didomebava means whatever qualities I have already achieved, make them firm.
• Sutokayomebhava means be pleased with me, be happy with me, because if we look at what
we do now, basically we do the opposite of what would please Vajrasattva.
• Supokayamebhava means please cause my qualities to increase, to improve.
• Anurakto mebhava - me means me and bhava means nature, anurakto is to be firm. What this
means is that affection (normally translated as attachment) not to have even a moment he
doesn't hold us with compassion.
• Sarvi siddhi me prayaccha - sarva means all and siddhi means attainments - supreme and
ordinary. All together, this means let me achieve all of the attainments, both supreme and
ordinary. When we talk about common and uncommon siddhis there are eight common, and
the supreme attainment is buddhahood.
• Sarva karma sutsame - sarva all, karma action refers to peaceful activities, controlling
activities and wrathful activities - altogether means please do all of those activities for me.
• Sittam shriyam kurum hum - sittam refers to the mind or the heart. Shriyam has the ideas of
glorious or marvelous - please fill my mind with splendor. What kind? The next five syllables.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 84 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

• Ha ha ha ha ho - represent the five exalted wisdoms. With the last line, please fill my mind
with the glory of the five exalted wisdoms.
• baghavan sarva tathaghata - bhagavan is the endowed transcendent destroyer, tathagatas
are the Buddhas that have gone thus.
• vajra mamemutsa - the vajra of all Buddhas. Ma me is myself. What this is saying is
emphasizing what was mentioned above, that all of the Buddhas while training on the path
made the pledge to benefit all beings. Basically, just like you took it upon yourself to benefit all
sentient beings in the past, in accordance with that promise, please never give me up.
• Vajra bhava mahaya samaya sattva - begins with vajra, ends with sattva, so talking about
Vajrasattva: Vajrasattva the great pledge.
• Ah hum phet - with Ah the hundred syllables are complete. And hum phet means obliterate
completely all suffering.

When you understand the meaning of this it's very nice. It's a mantra that we often recite in
various rituals and you can think of it as making a request to Vajrasattva not to forget all the
promises he made while training on the path. Of course he's not going to forget them, but
anyway that's what you're doing.

Then there is a brief Vajrasattva mantra where you simply recite Om Vajrasattva Hum. You can't
just recite the short one for your accumulation, and beside that, the long one has all that


Then there is the guru yoga which refers to seeing one's guru and the meditation as
inseparable. This is only in the tantra practices, they don't have this in the sutra practices, there
they have devotion to the spiritual guide. With guru yoga you would keep practicing until the two
appear inseparable, until when you think of the guru you think of the deity, and when you think
of the deity you think of your guru. There are many guru yogas: Tara, LTK, Kalachakra,
Yamantaka, etc.

The Vajrasattva practice and mantra recitation is really very important. Because of that we're
encouraged to recite it twenty-one times before going to asleep at night, so that your
wrongdoings would at least not increase and at best purify. Because it's so important we have
Vajrasattva and guru yoga at the beginning of all our practices. Vajrasattva to purify, guru yoga
in order to receive blessings. Guru yoga is like a magnifying glass that focuses all the blessings
so that we can receive so many blessings. Of the two, purifying and accumulating merit, the
main one is purifying, the most important, because at the moment what prevents us from
developing various qualities is the negativities and obscurations that prevent our qualities from
developing. Once you've purified the qualities our knowledge very easily grows.

On the side of the sutra practices, the supreme method for confessing ones wrongdoings is
reciting the names of the 35 confession Buddhas. It's referred to as the bodhisattvas confession
of downfalls - the way of purifying having broken the bodhisattva root downfalls. There's a
custom of reciting them three times each day and three times each night. Reciting each name
purifies a huge amount of negative karma. The way Je Rinpoche did this is combined with
prostrating. If you can't prostrate, that's fine.


Six Yogas of Naropa Page 85 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

Q: What's the Vajrasattva mantra with Heruka in it? Which one do we do for the 100,000?

It's good to recite Om Vajrasattva rather than Heruka. Because when you say the mantra with
Heruka you focus the practice on Chakrasamvara. If you practice Yamantaka or Guhyasamaja
the mantra is w.r.t. those. With Tara Om Pema Sattva.

Q: While doing tummo should one remain still?

There's no harm in moving one's body a little as long as one's focus on the object remains still.
Some people even though their mind is fixed quite firmly on the object, still the move around
quite a bit. They may not even know their body is moving!

Q: How do you accumulate the 100,000 Vajrasattva mantras?

First of all, it's important to keep the practice going constantly, at least one or two rounds a day
when busy. It's better to do it in one place, but also acceptable to do in different places.

Q: When doing powa with vase breathing do we swallow?

All of the tummo practices do contain this element of bringing all of the airs from above down to
the object of meditation with swallowing some saliva.

Q: Alternate postures for powa?

You can be in the vajra posture, but not everybody can do that, so you can do it in a chair, half
lotus, Tara asana.

Q: Can you combine Vajrasattva and prostration ngondros?

Yes. Usually you do your 100,000 prostrations with the names of the Buddhas, but it would be
acceptable to do with the Vajrasattva mantra instead.

Q: If we don't yet have the 100,000 Vajrasattva meditations, what can we do without the

You can still do the practices but do the 21 at the beginning.

Q: Connection between Six Yogas and Tsog?

For someone doing Six Yogas, then for sure you need to do the Tsog offering on the 10th and

That will do for the explanation of Vajrasattva and Guru Yoga.

Then you'd visualize the channels. Then when you've become familiar with those, then you
move on to visualizing the chakras. You need to get clear how many there are, how many
channels, the colors, the shapes, and you do this repeatedly until you've become familiar with
all of that, and then you go on to the point called training in the pathways of the channels.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 86 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

With the practice of refuge with Sangye Chodam... I go for refuge until I achieve enlightenment.
Think that enlightenment refers to the union of Vajradhara. According to the common way of
going for refuge, then when you say Jangchub, that enlightenment can refer to the place
(Bodhgaya where the thousand Buddhas of this eon achieve enlightenment) or the realization
(the omniscient mind).

In fact we can talk about ordinary refuge and special refuge, ordinary bodhicitta and special
bodhicitta. Different objects of refuge in different practices - to deity. And with bodhicitta, special
bodhicitta is where you have the determination to achieve enlightenment for the benefit of all
sentient beings in the time of degenerations.

You visualize the channels, you reflect on their color, their size, where the upper and lower ends
are and so forth. Meditate on that repeatedly and then you reflect on the chakras: number of
spokes, colors, shapes, etc. when that's going well you can do training in the pathway of the
channels. It becomes easy to do that when you become familiar with the channels and chakras.

Now if you're practicing Vajrayogini for example you think of yourself as Vajrayogini with your
body being very clear and lucid. You have to think of the channels as being very clear.

The chakras are the same as before.

Now you do the training in the pathways of the channels. You do that by having your mind in the
form of the indestructible drop at your heart, radiating five colored lights, the size of a mustard
seed. It can alternatively be the size of a pea, but make the central channel a little thicker. From
that perspective at the center of the heart chakra you look up and can see the throat chakra (go
in it). You see how many channels are there. The light radiating from you as the indestructible
drop make all the channels completely clean and clear. Then again you look up, you see very
clearly to the crown chakra, you see the five colored lights radiating there completely clear and
clean. You go up and imagine you go to the crown you look down and see the hole at the end of
the central channel between the two eyebrows. You go there and are half protruding from that
hole and half still inside. You look and you can see your whole body as the deity very clearly.
Light radiates out from the indestructible drop and goes out completely to everywhere, making
everywhere completely clear. Again you go up to the crown of the head, down to the throat,
down to the heart. Then you look down to the navel chakra, see it very clearly, go down through
the central channel and take your place at the center of the navel chakra, and look at all the
channels and radiate light that makes them all very clean and clear. Do that three or four times.
At the end, your mind in the form of a mustard seed goes up to the center chakra where it

When that meditation is going well, then you meditate on the letters. At the crown an upside
down HAM hanging from a moon disk, very bright to prevent sinking. At the crown is white
bodhicitta like frost in the form of HAM. The size is very small. When you do so it's easier to
bring the airs into the central channel. When you think of it big there's more risk of the mind
scattering from the object.

And then below that you have the 16 channels of the throat chakra, which has the red letter OM
hot and burning. Also blissful in nature - all of them. The whole point is to generate bliss.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 87 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

At the heart you have the blue HUM, that's how it's described in the Three Convictions.
Alternatively you can imagine it's white, upside down, on a moon disk. Like frost, in the nature of
water, the white bodhicitta. Just like dew that forms on the tip of a blade of grass in the morning.

Inside the navel chakra you have the ASHAY which is the size of a mustard seed on a moon
cushion. All of them have the crescent moon and the circle and squiggle on top. In the drawing,
it shows the central channel quite thick, but in the meditation it's not thick like that. If you look at
Tibetan texts, sometimes syllables are separated by a dot and sometimes by a line thick at the
top and thin at the bottom. It's like that but upside down. Very hot, about to burst into flames.

All four of these letters are in essence the guru, the meditational deity, and one's mind. When
you meditate on each letter think that your mind has completely absorbed into it.

What you do is you reflect on the other three letters a little, but mainly focus on the ASHAY,
ATUNG, the short AH. And even if it's not completely clear to you, that's not the point. Put your
mind on it and it will gradually become clear. If you put too much effort you lose the focus. You
cultivate the abiding, the remaining on the object principally. Then, when the mind goes away to
another object you hook it back again and think, I'm not going to allow myself to be distracted. In
the beginning you'll find you can only stay on the object a little bit. When you persist in the
meditation, the periods where the mind can remain on the object will increase, and clarity will
increase more and more. When you find that you're getting sleepy, you can wash yourself until
the sleep clears up. If your clothes are too warm, change your clothes, or go outside. Once the
sleepiness has cleared you can go back to the meditation.

The main thing then is you're cultivating stability abiding on the ASHAY. While doing that, how
to deal with mental excitation? Try doing 21 breaths, breathing out and thinking I'm breathing
out, and thinking I'm breathing in while breathing in. Or holding the vase. While meditating we
find ourselves thinking of all sorts of other important things! You lose the object. Meditating on
the vase, bringing the lower airs up and the upper airs down to the ASHAY, then the airs are
prevented from going outwards to outer objects.

That's meditating on the letters. The main thing is that you focus on the ASHAY and you try to
keep your mind firmly on that in a stable way. If you're able to do that, the next step is igniting
the fire of the inner heat, and it will be easy, as will the blazing. If your mind isn't able to remain
firmly on the ASHAY, then it won't work very well. You'll get imprints, but actually generating
bliss won't happen very much.


Breathe in through the nostrils, come down, strike the ASHAY at the navel. The effect of the
ASHAY striking the navel is that it's on the verge of bursting into flames. Do that six or seven

Now for causing the inner neat to actually blaze, again you breath in slowly, gently, and the air
again strikes the ASHAY and you do that six or seven times. Through that, the fire actually
blazes from the tip of the ASHAY, and you can think that it's two to four fingers in length, a very
fine flame like the tip of a needle. Before with igniting the fire of inner heat it was on the verge of
bursting into flame. Here it actually happens.

Tomorrow we'll do the simple blazing and dripping and the special blazing and dripping.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 88 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche


Q: Should I achieve Shiné before meditating on the ASHAY?

When you're doing this practice in order to get the imprints, you get to igniting the fire of inner
heat, do that six or seven times. Otherwise if you really want to do the practice and really get the
experience, you would take the ASHAY as the focal object until you achieve calm abiding and
then go on to the other steps. That would be fantastic but it's just a question of getting the time
to be able to do it.

To be able to gain calm abiding you have to look at the six causes, the causal collection. The six
prerequisites you need for cultivating calm abiding. When you are cultivating calm abiding it's
like rubbing two sticks together to make fire. You have to do it continuously, not put the sticks
down and come back later. You have to persist in keeping the mind on the object.

Saturday, December 9
7am Rene
If you merely bring your mind inside the central channel your mental afflictions diminish. It calms
the mind. With the nine round breathing you don't need the mudra after a while. It's easier to be
peaceful sitting, just visualizing.

9 round breathing
Vase breathing
Blazing of tummo - three rings of fire around each chakra up, keep mind on drip as it comes
down, your mind merged with mind of guru in each letter/chakra
Special blazing, out to gurus from right nostril
Back to you into left nostril, melt drop, experience chakras
Down from navel to secret chakra at tip of jewel
Death dissolution
Arise in illusory body, visit Bodhgaya, circumambulate, visit pure lands
Return to your body, dissolve in your heart. You are yidam
Your Gurus and yidam appear in front of you
Refuge, they send you blessing light
Review stages of the path

LTK was a great meditator but then realized his meditation on emptiness was wrong - it was
nihilism. Emptiness means empty of inherent existence, not empty of existence. The best
approach is the king of reasonings where emptiness means dependent arising. When you focus
on the space-like nature of mind, as a side thought, say the I that exists is merely designated on
that space of consciousness. The I is not there within the awareness or separate. It's nowhere
to be found yet it exists as a mere designation. Then arise from that space as your yidam, as
light blissful energy. Invoke your root gurus in front of you in the aspect of Vajradharas, father
and mother, and say hey, good morning! Try to feel their living presence. Focus on their
qualities and kindness. Humbly bow down with your heart. Present some offerings and request
that they keep on guiding you today, throughout the day, throughout your life and death, through
the bardo and all future lives.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 89 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

You can also imagine all the Buddhas merging into one and becoming very small, coming to the
crown of your head. He rests there and melts the drop, producing bliss, then at the throat
producing bliss, then at the heart producing bliss. Focus your mind on your heart chakra and go
through the four empties. There's a door there in your heart chakra. Your guru enters there, like
going underwater, diving into your heart. Follow your guru inside your heart chakra to the drop
in the center.

10am Rinpoche

Yesterday we completed the blazing fire of inner heat. Now, once you have reached some level
of stability with that, then you think that you have a fine flame coming from your object of
meditation at the navel, 2-4 fingers in length, and then you think a flame from the ATUNG at the
navel goes up from the central channel and circles the HUM three times clockwise, and
because of this the HUM becomes ready to drip, just as when you leave butter in the sun. And
then it carries on up to the throat, around the OM at the throat three times clockwise, and you
think the tangibility aspect of that becomes hotter, and then it goes up to the crown of the head
where it dissolves into the HAM.

This fire has dissolved into the HAM and that acts as a condition for the nectar to drip from the
HAM like a thread of a spider's web, goes down and dissolves at the OM at throat the size of a
mustard seed. Just like a drop of water dissolving into something and then carries on
underneath, just like that you think it dissolves into the OM, which has a blissful and warm
nature, which becomes much stronger than before - exceptionally blissful and warm - and it
carries on dripping down from the OM to the HUM at the heart, dissolves into that, and
previously it was already blissful in nature and it becomes exceptionally blissful, and continues
down to the ATUNG at the navel, which becomes exceptionally blissful and warm.

And so then you hold your mind on the ATUNG at your navel and the flame, the fire, and you
meditate on that with your mind having merged into the object. And then, again, you form the air
vase, which is aimed at bringing the airs into the central channel, into the ATUNG, and you do
that repeatedly. Then once you get to the point you think it's going well, there's the next step.

Before you were thinking the fire, the flame, was like the tip of a needle. Now you think it's like a
thick needle. The flame has become thicker, and you think that the light from that flame fills up,
pervades and illuminates all of the channels of the navel chakra so you can see them really
clearly, as if one light in a house could illuminate four rooms.

Of course there are the sixty-four channels at the navel chakra, eight at the heart, sixteen at the
throat, thirty-two at the crown. If you're capable of doing it, think that this light illuminates all
72,000 channels of the body.

If you do this, what can happen, is that a few hidden phenomena become known to you. You
might be able to say to somebody this is going to happen to you tomorrow, or this happened to
you in the past. As a result of the simple blazing and dripping.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 90 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

Then, having done this mediation on the simple blazing and dripping repeatedly, you can keep
the flame as before and think that the light pervades all of the pores of the body. Depending
upon that you think that what happens is that the three chakras of the heart, throat, crown; five
aggregates and four elements; through light striking them they all become very pliant. In
Vajrayogini the effect is described as like limp flowers placed in water that are revitalized.

It's like when you're really cold and you go sit out in the sun and all your skin becomes warmed
up and soft. Then you think that light goes out from the third eye point, the dzobo, where the
hair coil is on the Buddha - it can be pulled out as far as you like and then it goes in - and light
also goes out from your nostrils, to all sentient beings and all of their obscurations and
negativities get purified and they manifest enlightenment.

Remember that all four of the letters are the guru, one's meditational deity, and the mind. The
light from the ATUNG has a very special power, causing all sentient beings to achieve

In this way, all sentient beings become Buddhas, and you think that the light goes in through the
left nostril of all those previously enlightened, and all the heroes and dakinis of the twenty-four

Remember I listed the twenty-four places the other day? These places were originally the
abodes of the entourage of Shiva, who had all these followers. Chakrasamvara subdued all
those followers and those Shiva places became Heruka places. That's where these countless
dakas and dakinis are and the light goes in their left nostrils. When the light reaches the crown
of their head it causes them to experience a very special bliss, likewise at their throats and at
their hearts, and you think that in the minds of each and every one of those there is this very
special bliss, which takes the aspect of white drops that leave their right nostril, enter into our
left nostril, come around and up to our crown, throat, heart, and navel chakras, in turn, and we
experience very special bliss and joy at each place. This is called the profound method of being
taken care of by the Buddhas and bodhisattvas.

You have this process that you can repeat (say, seven times) of intense bliss and heat in the
ATUNG, and you hold your attention on the ATUNG and the flame, you hold the vase. Just like
when igniting the fire of inner heat, you increase the stability of the mind on the ATUNG.

And so the purpose of all of this is to generate the exalted wisdom of great bliss. Here, what
we've been doing, you imagine these things going on and the steps of igniting the fire of inner
heat, special blazing and dripping. At the end of all this, without doing all those various
meditations, you think that all the airs of the upper part of the body and the bodhicitta enter into
the central channel at the crown and you experience joy. Then you send the airs back into the
body and they pervade the body. Then you think the airs and the bodhicitta enter into and
merge into the central channel at the throat and you experience supreme joy. You're not making
it descend from the crown to throat and throat to heart, you're bringing the airs to the crown
chakra from the body and you experience joy, then out, and back in to the throat chakra and you
experience supreme joy, then out and in to the heart, then out to the body and in to the navel.
The fourth of the four joys would be experienced in the navel chakra.

How you do it is to bring all the airs and the bodhicitta to the crown chakra inside the central
channel, then back to the body; in to the central channel at the throat and experience supreme
joy, etc. This is how it's described in many texts including LTK's Three Convictions.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 91 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

You have these seven steps starting with visualizing the channels. When you're doing these
seven steps you don't do the mediation on the four joys. Then at the end of that you do the
mediation on experiencing the four joys.

You have the four joys and the four empties which are produced together. The four joys are
produced by bodhicitta drops coming in to the central channel. The four empties are caused by
the airs coming in to the central channel: appearance, increase, near attainment, and clear light.
Each joy corresponds to each empty, caused by bodhicitta drops in one case, and airs coming
in in the other.

In general, when the airs and bodhicitta are gathered more strongly in the crown, that's when
you wake up, when they are gathered more strongly at the throat it's the dream state, at the
heart it's the deep sleep state, at the navel is the fourth state - production of simultaneous bliss,
the fourth of the four joys.

The main thing is the tummo, the inner heat. So, before even doing the vase mediation you
have the process of dispelling the bad airs, generating yourself as the deity, generating yourself
as the hollow body, like that. If you're practicing Yamantaka, you have the dissolution and then
generated yourself as the deity, similarly for other deities. Then you would do that hollow body
meditation. Then you'd go on to visualizing the channels and so forth.


Q: With the first joy is it all the airs dissolving into the crown chakra or just the upper airs?

What happens is that it's very much like a river that starts off very thin, very small, and as it goes
down and other tributaries are feeding into it it becomes wider and wider. At the beginning
meditating on the first joy, the airs of the upper part of the body enter into the central part of the
crown and you experience the first joy. And each is more intense. Then the airs and the
bodhicitta go back out, are sent out again, and more bodhicitta and airs enter the throat, which
are more powerful, a stronger sense of bliss than the joy, because the air and bodhicitta that's
entering into the central channel of the throat is more. The airs are sent out again and back to
the heart, and the amount that merges into the central channel gets progressively more.

Q: Who subdued Vishnu?

Don't know!

Q: When one goes through the fourth empty one experiences clear light of death, mixing the
Dharmakaya with the waking time. How do you go about mixing the other two kayas?

If you're practicing Vajrayogini, in conjunction with dreaming. When you dream, arising from
deep to light sleep, you have the dream body, and instead, arise there as Vajrayogini, a white
Vajrayogini. You would meditate on divine pride of yourself being Vajrayogini at that point.
When you wake up you would imagine yourself in the form of a red Vajrayogini and generate
the divine pride of being the result of the Nirmanakaya, and that would be mixing the
Nirmanakaya with sleep.

Six Yogas of Naropa Page 92 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche

So that's how it works with sleep. With the three kayas at the time of waking, when the airs have
all been brought into the central channel at the navel you get the fourth joy and the fourth
empty, that's the clear light and you practice divine pride of that being the resultant
Dharmakaya. That's mixing waking with the Dharmakaya. Then, for practicing mixing waking
time with the Sambhogakaya you would appear as the white Vajrayogini. For Nirmanakaya,
think that the white Vajrayogini goes into the heart of the red Vajrayogini and that's mixing the
Nirmanakaya that way.

It's similar when you're doing the three mixings with sleep. You would have been sleeping in the
form of red Vajrayogini. At the time of dreaming then you meditate on the white Vajrayogini, and
then that Vajrayogini goes into the heart of yourself as the red Vajrayogini and you wake up,
and that's mixing the sleeptime with the Nirmanakaya.


There are four joys and empties descending, and then four joys in reverse order ascending with
the four empties. Each bliss gets stronger and stronger.

When you get the fourth joy it's simultaneous joy, then the four joys of rising. Those are all
simultaneous joy, or simultaneous bliss, although, as you're going up and experiencing the four
rising joys they're still called joy, supreme joy, ... Generally for the rising order you have: joy
from the secret place to navel, navel to heart supreme joy, heart to throats special joy, throat to
crown simultaneous joy.

Q: Is tummo the main practice for now? Should we practice any transference of consciousness
now too?

The explanation is to do the transference on the basis of tummo. If the tummo has gone well
then the powa will go well.


Six Yogas of Naropa Page 93 of 93 Khensur Rinpoche