ApprenticeI found the solitary retreat very beneficial, and also the continuing mantras on the journey home was interesting. It reminded me of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche saying: ‘It’s more a case of the Buddha trying to become you than vice versa’.

Ngala Nor’dzinYes – ‘trying’ can be our main problem. If we relax, we may discover that our realised being can sparkle through.

ApprenticeI feel like lately I’ve overcome the initial temptation of thought – not by any means experiencing bliss-filled emptiness – just a relaxation of that hurdle of thinking about not thinking.

Ngala ’ö-Dzin This sounds excellent. Remember the phrase ‘finding presence of awareness in the dimension of...’ We cannot find presence if we are trying to watch ourselves find it. We have to let go of the observer and experience nakedly and directly. We have to stop splitting it into the experience and watching the experience. It is a good start to be able to let go of the commentary that likes to note a moment of success in letting go of thought.

ApprenticeIs the problem of ‘I am meditating’ not the actual perception of it or the recognition of it, but rather that you give the perception a location/identity instead of just seeing?

Ngala Nor’dzinYes – if when practising shi-nè we don’t let go of the movement of intellect – but get hooked by our comment and look at it then we have lost presence; or if when practising lhatong we fail to enter the dimension of the movement of the comment and again get caught by its content. Once we notice that we have become engrossed with the content of the thought and failed to either let go of it or remain present in its movement, then we have returned to presence and can then continue with the practice.

ApprenticeSomething else I’ve found is that I hardly ever experience nyams while formally practising – it’s always in a really normal situation. Sometimes it’s like I get a glimpse of freedom or limitlessness while looking out of a window or something, that’s almost tear jerking – that it’s possible and that we don’t seem to be there.

Ngala Nor’dzin This is delightful and a sign that your four naljor practice is filtering out into your daily life. This is a useful experience of ‘integration’ of practice.

ApprenticeAnd today I just had a real simple but powerful feeling as I walked down a dusty old track – sounds like some cheesy old song – that I could be whatever I was, it didn’t matter. Then it was like I was really young and really old and everything in between and it was totally normal.

Ngala ’ö-DzinThis is wonderful. We are most delighted to hear this.

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