Pointing Out Way
Pointing Out the Great Way combines a strong grounding in the Western scientific study of the contemplative experience integrated with the ancient Indian and Tibetan spiritual traditions and the wisdom of their direct transmission lineages. This provides Westerners of all levels simple, profound, and clear access to the deepest spiritual traditions.
These teachings represent living lineages where the precious instructions for awakening are passed from heart-to-heart down each generation as an unbroken lineage. The lineages represented in these teachings include: the Gelugpa (Gelugpa) teachings on the nine stages of concentration meditation and on ordinary emptiness meditations; the Kar rgyud (Kagyu) teachings on Great Seal (Mahamudra) meditation; the Nyingma Great Completion teachings; and the Bon Zhang Zhung Oral Transmission and A Khrid Great Completion teachings.
In the early essence traditions of Indo-Tibetan Buddhism, like the Great Seal (phyags chen; Mahamudra) and the Great Perfection (dzogs chen) meditation traditions, students were literally sung into awakening by their teachers using pithy poem-songs called dohas.
The Tibetan word, ngo sprod pa means “to point out” or “to introduce.” The teacher offers detailed explanation of the typical meditation experiences, way to practice, and common problems that arise at each stage of meditation practice. The student describes meditation experience in sufficient detail while the teacher carefully monitors the student’s meditation progress. When the student has developed the practice so as to make the mind ‘fit’ the teacher points out the real nature of the mind and the protected practices that enable the student to awaken to the mind’s real nature. Pointing out refers to a style of teaching meditation that is firmly relationally-based.
This practice leads us from identification with the reactivity of thought, personality, and time, to the realization of our essence as a vast ocean of awareness; love that transcends and includes this body and mind. Meditation as not only a formal practice but also a way of living and viewing the world, which informs the whole of how we live, work, and love. Such an approach is non-dual and world embracing in its orientation.