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Jyotish Practice




Cycles of Disintegration and Rebirth

Exhaustion and Revitalization of Flesh-Forms

Veil of Forgetfulness * River Lethe



The Waters of Lethe by the Plains of Elysium by John Stanhope c. 1880

~ As I Lay Dying 1897-1962 William Faulkner "The past is never dead. It's not even past."

~~Earth Changes 1877-1945 Edgar Cayce Readings, 1464-2

"The WHOLE law is to love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, thy mind, thy body; thy neighbor as thyself.

This is the whole law, this is the whole purpose for an experience , an activity of an entity in any given or individual experience or appearance

even throughout the sojourns in a material plane."

~~ Oscar Wilde

"To be really medieval, one should have no body.

To be really modern, one should have no soul."

14th Dalai Lama 1935- Policy of Kindness Tenzing Gyatso . (2001).

Answers:Discussions with Western Buddhists

José Ignacio Cabezón (Ed.)

"In general, there are different levels of consciousness.

The more rough, or gross, levels of consciousness are very heavily dependent upon the physical, or material, sphere.

Since one's own physical aggregate (the body) changes from birth to birth, so too do these gross levels of consciousness.

The more subtle the level of consciousness, however, the more independent of the physical sphere ,

and hence the more likely that it will remain from one life to the next.

But in general, whether more subtle or more gross, all levels of consciousness are of the same nature."


speaking on Reincarnation, Consciousness, and the Vajrayana Buddhist doctrine of Soul or No Soul:

14th Dalai Lama 1935- Policy of Kindness Tenzing Gyatso

Healing Anger:The Power of Patience from a Buddhist Perspective .

Geshe Thupten Jinpa (Trans.).

Q: ...what is the nature of the mindstream that reincarnates from lifetime to lifetime?

A: ...If one understands the term "soul" as a continuum of individuality from moment to moment, from lifetime to lifetime, then one can say that Buddhism also accepts a concept of soul; there is a kind of continuum of consciousness. From that point of view, the debate on whether or not there is a soul becomes strictly semantic.

  • However, in the Buddhist doctrine of selflessness, or "no soul" theory, the understanding is that there is no eternal, unchanging, abiding, permanent self called"soul."

  • That is what is being denied in Buddhism.

Buddhism does not deny the continuum of consciousness.

Because of this, we find some Tibetan scholars, such as the Sakya master Ren-dawa, who accept that there is such a thing as self or soul, the "kangsak ki dak" (Tib. gang zag gi bdag).

  • However, the same word, the "kangsak ki dak," the self, or person, or personal self, or identity, is at the same time denied by many other scholars.

We find diverse opinions , even among Buddhist scholars, as to what exactly the nature of self is, what exactly that thing or entity is that continues from one moment to the next moment, from one lifetime to the next lifetime.

  • Some try to locate it within the aggregates, the composite of body and mind.

  • Some explain it in terms of a designation based on the body and mind composite, and so on....

One of the divisions of [the "Mind-Only"] school maintains there is a special continuum of consciousness called Alayavijnana which is the fundamental consciousness.

~~ The Zincali: An Account of the Gypsies of Spain , by George Borrow, 1841

"Some of the Gypsies ...

[hold] the supposition that the soul which at present animates my body has at some former period tenanted that of one of their people;

for many among them are believers in metempsychosis,

and, like the followers of Bouddha, imagine that their souls, by passing through an infinite number of bodies,

attain at length sufficient purity to be admitted to a state of perfect rest and quietude,

which is the only idea of heaven they can form."

Getting Out For Good:

~~ Tsong-ka-pa and 14th Dalai Lama 1935- Policy of Kindness Tenzing Gyatso

Tantra in Tibet .

Jeffrey Hopkins (Trans. and Ed.)

"Only a Buddha has extinguished all faults and gained all attainments. Therefore, one should mentally go for refuge to a Buddha, praise him with speech, and respect him physically. One should enter the teaching of such a being.

Buddha's abandonment of defects is of three types: good, complete, and irreversible.

  • Good abandonment involves overcoming obstructions through their antidotes, not just through withdrawing from those activities.

  • Complete abandonment is not trifling, forsaking only some afflictions or just the manifest afflictions, but forsaking all obstructions.

  • Irreversible abandonment overcomes the seeds of afflictions and other obstructions in such a way that defects will never arise again, even when conditions favourable to them are present."


Emperor Konstantin and the Patriarchs at the First Council of Nicea in 325 C.E. (A.D.)

The Source

~~ W.S. Merwin

There in the fringe of trees between

the upper field and the edge of the one

below it that runs above the valley

one time I heard in the early

days of summer the clear ringing

six notes that I knew were the opening

of the Fingal's Cave Overture

I heard them again and again that year

and the next summer and the year

afterward those six descending

notes the same for all the changing

in my own life since the last time

I had heard them fall past me from

the bright air in the morning of a bird

and I believed that what I had heard

would always be there if I came again

to be overtaken by that season

in that place after the winter

and I would wonder again whether

Mendelssohn really had heard them somewhere

far to the north that many years ago

looking up from his youth to listen to

those six notes of an ancestor

spilling over from a presence neither

water nor human that led to the cave

in his mind the fluted cliffs and the wave

going out and the falling water

he thought those notes could be the music for

Mendelssohn is gone and Fingal is gone

all but his name for a cave and for one

piece of music and the black-capped warbler

as we called that bird that I remember

singing there those notes descending

from the age of the ice dripping

I have not heard again this year can it

be gone then will I not hear it

from now on will the overture begin

for a time and all those who listen

feel that falling in them but as always

without knowing what they recognize.

True Knowledge

14th Dalai Lama 1935- Policy of Kindness Tenzing Gyatso . (2004).

Dzogchen: The Heart Essence of the Great Perfection.

Thupten Jinpa, Richard Barron (Trans.), Patrick Gaffney (Ed.), fwd by Sogyal Rinpoche, 2nd ed.

"The reason why we find so much discussion of epistemology, or how to define something as a valid cognition, in Buddhist writings is because all our problems, suffering and confusion derive from a misconceived way of perceiving things.

This explains why it is so important for a practitioner to determine whether a cognitive event is a misconception or true knowledge.

For it is only by generating insight which sees through delusion that we can become liberated.

Even in our own experience we can see how our state of mind passes through different stages , eventually leading to a state of true knowledge.

For instance, our initial attitude or standpoint on any given topic might be a very hardened misconception, thinking and grasping at a totally mistaken notion.

But when that strong grasping at the wrong notion is countered with reasoning, it can then turn into a kind of lingering doubt, an uncertainty where we wonder:"Maybe it is the case, but then again maybe it is not". That would represent a second stage.

When further exposed to reason or evidence, this doubt of ours can turn into an assumption, tending towards the right decision. However, it is still just a presumption, just a belief.

When that belief is yet further exposed to reason and reflection, eventually we could arrive at what is called 'inference generated through a reasoning process'. Yet that inference remains conceptual , and it is not a direct knowledge of the object.

Finally, when we have developed this inference and constantly familiarized ourselves with it, it could turn into an intuitive and directrealization -- a direct experience of the event.

So we can see through our own experience how our mind, as a result of being exposed to reason and reflection, goes through different stages, eventually leading to a direct experience of a phenomenon or event."

Buddhist Logical Basis for Reincarnation

14th Dalai Lama 1935- Policy of Kindness Tenzing Gyatso . (1999).

Consciousness at the Crossroads: Conversations with the Dalai Lama on Brain Science and Buddhism .

Zara Houshmand, R.B. Livingston, and B. A. Wallace (Eds.)

"When this world initially formed, there seem to have been two types of events or entities, one sentient, the other insentient. Rocks, for instance, are examples of non-sentient entities. You see, we usually consider them to have no feelings: no pains and no pleasures. The other type, sentient beings, have awareness, consciousness, pains and pleasures.

  • But there needs to be a cause for that.

  • If you posit there is no cause for consciousness, then this leads to all sorts of inconsistencies and logical problems.

  • So, the cause is posited, established.

  • It is considered certain.

The initial cause must be an independent consciousness.

And on that basis is asserted The theory of continuation of life after death.

It is during the interval when one's continuum of awareness departs from one's body at death that the subtle mind, the subtle consciousness, becomes manifest.

That continuum connects one life with the next."

from Lighting the Way by 14th Dalai Lama 1935- Policy of Kindness Tenzing Gyatso , translated by Geshe Thupten Jinpa

Origins of the Human Consciousness = "Beginningless "

"The essential point about this condition of potentiality is that, although there is a causal relationship between the physical world and the world of mental phenomena, in terms of their own continuum one cannot be said to be the cause of the other.

  • A mental phenomenon, such as a thought or an emotion, must come from a preceding mental phenomenon;
  • likewise, a particle of matter must come from a preceding particle of matter.

of course, there is an intimate relationship between the two. We know that mental states can influence material phenomena, such as the body; and, similarly, that material phenomena can act as contributory factors for certain subjective experiences.

This is something that we can observe in our lives. Much of our gross level of consciousness is very closely connected to our body, and in fact we often use terminology and conventions which reflect this.

  • For example, when we say 'human mind' or 'human consciousness' we are using the human body as the basis to define a particular mind state.
  • Likewise, at the gross levels of mind such as our sensory experiences, it is very obvious that these are heavily dependent upon our body and some physiological states.
  • When a part of our body is hurt or damaged, for instance, we immediately experience the impact on our mental state.
  • Nevertheless, the principle remains that mental phenomena must come from preceding phenomena of the same kind, and so on.

If we trace mental phenomena back far enough, as in the case of an individual's life, we come to the first instant of consciousness in this life.

Once we have traced its continuum to this point of beginning, we then have three options:

  1. we can either say that the first instant of consciousness in this life must come from a preceding instant of consciousness which existed in the previous life.
  2. Or we can say that this first instant of consciousness came from nowhere--it just sort of 'popped up'.
  3. Or we can say that it came from a material cause.

From the Buddhist point of view, the last two alternatives are deeply problematic.

  • The Buddhist understanding is that, in terms of its continuum, consciousness or mind is beginningless.
  • Mental phenomena are beginningless.

Therefore, the person or the being -- which is essentially a designation based on the continuum of the mind -- is also devoid of beginning."

P'taah speaks: Nov-2013 Q: I'm gonna start by asking, "Why would we play a game called 'I've forgotten where I come from' when we incarnate?"

P'taah: In a way to maintain the integrity of the experience. When you think that you have many, many lifetimes, all occurring simultaneously and your desire is to incarnate to have this most vivid intense experience called "human life," then in a way you would choose to maintain the integrity of that experience by kind of blocking out everything that is not of this experience.

Q: And when we choose to have this experience, we're not looking at the fact that it may be painful or uncomfortable. What we are looking at is merely, "It's intense!"

P'taah: Correct. Because in a way, the greater part of you could be likened unto this present self of you reading a book that is very sad, and you say, "Oh dear, what a sad story." However it is only a blip we would say in the totality of your own being. You understand?

Q: I do understand.

P'taah: All right. So the greater part of you understands that no matter how intense the experience, whether that be what you would term cataclysmic, or whether you would term it a most wondrous time in any particular span of time in your life, the bottom line is the greater part of you knows that you are eternal, knows that you are perfect, knows that you are this extraordinary Extension of the Mind of Creation simply having and creating moment by moment these experiences called your human lives. And of course it is to remember that you have other lifetimes that are not human--well, we would say not lifetimes, but experiences which are not human.

So in a way this human lifetime that you are experiencing in this Now is so large in your beingness of the present, and yet really kind of an in-breath and an out-breath of your greater self.

Q: Very good, and I would think from what you said that the more we come to know who we are, and the more we love ourselves, the less suffering there will be. There may be intense experiences, but it won't necessarily be what we call suffering.

P'taah: That is correct.

Q: Okay. So the aim is to become more at one with yourself.

P'taah: That is correct.

And we would say at this time also for those peoples who have experienced what is termed other lives, traumatic experience affecting this present lifetime, we would say really that parallel lives in a way are just a story and the reality is that you are to deal with and transform in this Now whatever is occurring, no matter where it may have originated from.

of course sometimes it assists you to put a logic unto this phenomena or that phenomena. But the truth is, everything is just a story, and you are to deal with and hopefully transform the fear of the, what you would call bad experience, into love, into acknowledgement and embracement. So that you change the frequency, you change the energy surrounding or involved with whatever experience it is.

Q: So in a sense it really doesn't matter whether what you are calling the story is true or whether it's something that you at some level made up, it doesn't matter...

P'taah: No, it does not matter. The bottom line is whatever the feeling is, it is that which is to be transformed from fear to love. Of course you may create a story that brings forth the feelings of great joy, and playfulness, and love, and acceptance etc. Well, all of it is just about the feeling, not about the story.

Q: And this seems a good place to ask, "Is there really anything out there?"

P'taah: No, it is only"in there."

Q: (Laughing) Very good.


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"And now my friends,

all that is true, all that is noble,

all that is just and pure,

all that is loveable and gracious,

whatever is excellent and admirable -

fill all your thoughts with these things."

~~ Epistle to the Philippians 4:8