Post a Comment. The haunting yet beautiful melodies of chod practice being chanted with bells, damaru drum, and thigh bone trumpet can be compelling to hear. There are many different specific lineages and sadhanas of chod in the various schools of Tibetan Buddhism and Bon. However, in both traditions the Chod practice is performed in a manner which has more in common with Tantra than Sutra, and in both traditions it is known as a very effective and powerful practice bringing the practitioner a strong experience of profound generosity as well as liberation from self-grasping, the root of Samsara. According to a forward by Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche:. The practitioner further visualizes transforming the body into an offering that satisfies all beings, thus cultivating generosity and detachment.
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Instead, this meditation is purposely performed in frightening places, such as cemeteries and charnel grounds. As long as one has not cut this self-grasping, then all the demons are standing around with their mouths wide open.
Playing a bell and a damaru, a two-headed drum traditionally made from human skulls, he aims to enter and abide in a calm and fully aware meditative state of mind. In this state, he visualizes expelling his consciousness from his body, the former becoming a deity most often a female one and the latter a corpse from which the guests will feast.
In the visualization, the deity severs the cranium and then chops the corpse in pieces, placing the flesh, blood, and bones inside the cranium, which becomes a cauldron. Over a low fire, the flesh, blood, and bones are cooked into nectar that satisfies all the desires of the enlightened and non-enlightened guests—Buddhas and bodhisattvas, demons and spirits, wrathful protectors and sentient beings alike.
In other words, no being is excluded from this offering. As the goal is to satisfy all these guests, the offerings are made in the way of a banquet—some guests may want to choose from the white banquet and others from the red.
The visualized offerings are endless, in that they suffice no matter how many guests come or how big their appetite is, and infinite, in that they transform into whatever the guests desire. The practitioner employs his body to finally cut the attachment to it. The body becomes the tool that the practitioner uses to play the instruments, to dance and chant vigorously, and at the same time it is the object of offering. From the standpoint of the essential teachings of the Buddhist sutras, sometimes called the path of renunciation, it refers to cutting negative emotions or hindrances to practice by means of abandoning them, offering them up, and acting in accordance with Buddhist teachings on ethics, such as the Prajnaparamita, or Perfection of Wisdom sutra.
The flesh, blood, and bone are said in many texts to represent the ignorance, attachment, and hatred respectively that are also transformed through this practice. That it is pan-Tibetan and encompasses all these views—the shamanic, sutric, tantric, and dzogchen—is a beautiful aspect of this intricate and often misunderstood practice.
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The Most Generous Cut
Chod Practice in the Bon Tradition
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The Real Chöd Practice
His work is an important contribution to our knowledge of these fascinating and attractive modes of spiritual practice. Through this ancient and profound practice, anyone who is able to recognize their own fear—whether its source is external or internal—can face that fear, challenge it, and overcome it. Ultimately fear becomes a tool to cultivate enlightened qualities. An excellent contribution. Documents the unique combination of meditation and shamanic rites that go beyond ego and literally invite our most fearful aspects to the light of day.
Chod Practice In The Bon Tradition
Instead, this meditation is purposely performed in frightening places, such as cemeteries and charnel grounds. As long as one has not cut this self-grasping, then all the demons are standing around with their mouths wide open. Playing a bell and a damaru, a two-headed drum traditionally made from human skulls, he aims to enter and abide in a calm and fully aware meditative state of mind. In this state, he visualizes expelling his consciousness from his body, the former becoming a deity most often a female one and the latter a corpse from which the guests will feast.