Foundational practices – weekend
The Foundational Practices, or Extraordinary Preliminary Practices (Ngöndro in Tibetan) consist of four meditations done one after another. Each of them are repeated 111,111 times. They prepare one’s mind for more advanced meditation.
Taking Refuge and Developing the Enlightened attitude
This is a well known physical practice from Tibet. One prostrates while visualizing all the aspects of the Refuge and repeating a refuge formula. This practice mainly cleans hindrances of the body so that it becomes a useful tool on the way to enlightenment. The openness and devotion which will appear are used for the next meditation, on Diamond Mind.
In this meditation one cleans difficult subconscious impressions (the causes of disturbing feelings) before they can manifest as difficult results in one’s daily life. One uses the mantra of the Buddha Diamond Mind, who has the ability to dissolve all impressions of whatever we have said or done in this or former lives.
After having cleaned body, speech and mind, one gets the space to receive new impressions. That’s why this practice can enrich our now open mind with everything good imaginable. One focuses on everything beautiful, precious, good and pure which one offers to the refuge. The surplus and joy that appear from this practice are used to benefit others.
The Guru Yoga meditation follows the same principle as the 16th Karmapa meditation. It is a more elaborate practice, where one repeats certain wishes to the whole transmission lineage, and increases one’s devotion and openness to the source for development. The identification with the lama will help us to experience the world as ever more blissful.
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