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RE: to Bruce & Jerry

Feb 07, 2002 02:54 AM
by dalval14

Thursday, February 07, 2002

Dear Bruce: and Jerry:

What has emerged as "Dzogchen" recently does not seem to be
mentioned by H P B that I can locate. The "Mahayana" the great
Path or Method is.

If as H P B and the Masters of WISDOM, claim THEOSOPHY is
primeval and eternal wisdom about everything, then I see no
barriers to making correlations to any system. However I would
suggest that THEOSOPHY is more likely to explain than be
explained by any "system."

I am not aware that any physical contorted posture adds much to
the mental will and the internal determination of trying to know
the TRUE. It may have something to do with the astral and pranic
currents, but I do not find any specifics in Theosophy covering

I would say if the determination,, attention, will and aspiration
are firm and directed to the truly impersonal ALL, then any
devotee will acquire some understanding in addition to the
scattered fragments of information available through a study of
the early theosophical literature.

It seems to me the first effort is towards acquiring an actual
knowledge of, and memory of what has been offered. Then follows
individual attempts at correlation and "fitting" one statement to

A more definite "picture" emerges if one gives patient and
persistent time to this process. But, it can be said this
applies as a method to learning anything. Each individual who
chooses or elects to apply such a process makes for themselves an
ever growing fund of understanding in depth and breadth.

Is this not so?

Best wishes,


-----Original Message-----
From: Bruce F. MacDonald]
Sent: Wednesday, February 06, 2002 2:38 PM
To: T
Subject: Re: Re to Bruce

At 10:55 PM 2/4/02 +0800, you wrote:
>I have never been able to sit in lotus or half-lotus, or med at
>times, etc. Regimentation has always been hard for me. So, I
took to
>Dzogchen like a duck to water. A very long time ago, James Long
told me
>that the Western constitution is different from the Eastern
>and that Eastern yoga would never find a home in the West. Later
I found
>that Jung had said the same thing. Anyway, my own experience
suggests the
>truth of this, and so Dzogchen would seem to be a more
acceptable practice
>in the West than formal Zen-like sitting sessions. Theosophy has
>techniques per se, so Theosophically one should use whatever
works best.
>The goal is to break through manas and raise consciousness to
>and it really doesn't matter how one does that (ie techniques
have to vary
>to fit the person).

Bruce: Agreed. I also can't sit cross legged, even though I
grew up in
India and even as a child couldn't manage it -- I think my bones
designed right for that. However, sitting in a chair or on a
hill or lying
down work just as well in my experience. I too like the
informality and
the freedom from specific doctrines and practices of Theosophy,
although I have gone a long way in meditation already, I do find
some of
the ideas of Dzogchen helpful in pushing just that little bit
beyond manas to atma/buddhi.

Blavatsky seems to have taken at least one major
teaching of
Dzogchen (whether from Bon or Buddhism, I don't know, both teach
it) and
that is the idea that matter and spirit are two sides of the same
thing and
that both are maya. Hinayana for example, teaches that
matter/samsara is
unreal/relative/maya while spirit/nirvana is real/absolute, and
thus never
gets out of this dualism, while Dzogchen is totally
non-dualistic. I see a
lot of Theosophists on this list and on theos-world advocating
the Hinayana
position. I have been trying to show that a Mahayana position,
and even a
Dzogchen position are also possible within the Theosophical
umbrella. To do
this, I have to make the assumption that Blavatsky knew more than
she wrote
about, and that some of her more profound teachings are in the
form of
hints and short statements that she deliberately intermixed
within her

Bruce: But also, just to add to what you have said, it seems to
me that
Dzogchen (like HPB) is also saying that although matter and
spirit are both
Maya, when seen from the perspective of the enlightened "base"
(as one book
puts it) they are also beyond Maya because they are an expression
of the
Base. So they are Maya when seen from the perspective of the
mind which
functions from the view of Maya, but they (both samsara and
nirvana) are
both beyond Maya when seen from the perspective of enlightenment.
you or Ian or both can comment on that.

Peace, Bruce

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