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Entrance To The Great Perfection: A Guide To The Dzogchen Preliminary Practices (The Heart Essence Series) Paperback – February 16, 2010


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Entrance To The Great Perfection: A Guide To The Dzogchen Preliminary Practices (The Heart Essence Series) + Not for Happiness: A Guide to the So-Called Preliminary Practices + Words of My Perfect Teacher: A Complete Translation of a Classic Introduction to Tibetan Buddhism (Sacred Literature)
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Product Details

  • Series: The Heart Essence Series
  • Paperback: 260 pages
  • Publisher: Snow Lion (February 16, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1559393394
  • ISBN-13: 978-1559393393
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,172,248 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Now in this inspiring book with Jigmé Lingpa's original commentary alongside Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche's brilliant and practical guide, we have a perfect blend of ancient and modern, offering us nothing less than a path to enlightenment as relevant and effective today as ever before."—Sogyal Rinpoche, author of The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying

"A thoroughly accessible and highly recommended resource for anyone intrigued to learn more about Tibetan Buddhism."—Midwest Book Review

"Dahl offers a valuable contribution for those engaging in this practice. . . . Dahl writes with the humility that characterizes the best translations and with an eye to the balance of accuracy and readability. The book makes a strong case for approaching the Buddhist path in a holistic way."—Buddhadharma: The Practitioner’s Quarterly "These preliminary practices found in all the Tibetan traditions provide a solid foundation for tantric practice. They consist of initial and continuing study, reflection, and meditation on the preciousness and uniqueness of human existence, impermanence, Karma, and the causal dependencies."—The Middle Way, the Buddhist Society's quarterly journal

About the Author

Cortland Dahl received a master's degree in Buddhist Studies from Naropa University. He has worked as an instructor at Kathmandu University's Centre for Buddhist Studies, a translator at the Nitartha Institute, and an interpreter for various lamas. Currently he serves as director of the Rime Foundation (www.rimefoundation.org), which he founded in 2004, and codirector of Tergar International (www.tergar.org), under the direction of Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche. Cortland is also a member of the Nitartha Translation Network and has worked extensively with the Dharmachakra Translation Committee. His published works include Great Perfection, Volumes I & II.

Customer Reviews

If you are a practitioner in the Nyingma or kagyu lineages this book is a MUST HAVE.
Air Conditioned Gypsy
Also there is the sadhana of the preliminaries from a tibetan lama, and it does not give the translation of the one hundred syllab mantra of Vajrasattva.
Amazone
The only reason I am giving it 4 instead of 5 stars is that a usual marketing trick is used in the title, and it is very dishonest.
Ngawang

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Ngawang on March 7, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Make no mistake, this is an excellent book for anyone pursuing the path of the Longchen Nyinghik ngondro and it is a must buy. It contains the first published English translation of the original Jigme Lingpa commentary on the ngondro (I wonder why this appears now and not decades earlier...) and this alone is reason enough for anyone to buy it. Along with that the book contains some previously published material, and excellent pithy instructions by Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche.

The only reason I am giving it 4 instead of 5 stars is that a usual marketing trick is used in the title, and it is very dishonest. Although the LN ngondro is sometimes called a Dzogchen preparation, the term "Dzogchen Preliminaries" is usually used for the Rushen and Semdzin practices. Looking at the cover of this book there is absolutely no way to know that it refers to the ngondro and not to the Dzogchen preliminaries proper. This is very deceptive, and I don't like this approach at all.
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Format: Paperback
Entrance to the Great Perfection: A Guide to the Dzogchen Preliminary Practices is an anthology of essays by renowned masters of Tibetan Buddhism, featuring both classic commentaries and modern-day analyses with recommendations for applying ancient wisdom into the hectic routine of contemporary life. An in-depth introduction to Tibetan Buddhism and its meditative practices, long and short preliminary practice liturgies, and a wealth of appendices for easy reference rounds out this solid guide to the foundational practices of Dzogchen. A thoroughly accessible and highly recommended resource for anyone intrigued to learn more about Tibetan Buddhism.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Greg R. Johnson on March 6, 2010
Format: Paperback
After reading "Words of My Perfect Teacher" this book would make a great next read. Although the texts chosen deal specifically with the Longchen Nyingtik ngongdro (preliminary practices) this book would probably be of help to anyone working their way through any of the various ngondro texts. The selection by contemporary master Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche is especially helpful. Khyentse displays a keen understanding of western attitudes toward spirituality and how these can sometimes be helpful and sometimes be obstacles.

Like all of Cortland Dahl's translations, the prose is clear and precise without being overly reliant on technical terminology. All terms unfamiliar to the average reader are covered in the extensive glossary. The foreword provides an overview of the historical context of the Longchen Nyingtik which can only help to deepen one's practice. Appendix IV on the "Nine Yanas" provides a short but clear explanation of how the vast range of sutrayanna and vajrayana practices support one and other, then merge and find their ultimate expression within Dzogchen.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By wch on April 12, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you are practicing the Longchen Nynthig, or a related ngondro, this is a handy book to have in retreat. In addition to Jigme Lingpa's commentary, which is quite hard to find in English, the book includes an excellent commentary by contemporary master Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche and a full translation of the ngondro practice itself. While it doesn't replace "Words of My Perfect Teacher" as the definitive commentary on this ngondro practice, it provides concise descriptions of the "why" for doing ngondro - Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche's teachings are especially helpful in this regard - along with reasonably detailed visualization instructions.

Cortland Dahl's translation is well-done; there's not a lot of "Dahl" in it except for the introductory material, where it is appropriate.

My only disappointment? He didn't include the Tibetan text for either Jigme Lingpa's commentary or the ngondro itself.
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More About the Author

Cortland is an author, translator, and meditation teacher. He began meditating in the early 1990's and has practiced meditation and studied Buddhism in Japan, Burma, India, and Nepal. After earning a master's degree in Buddhist Studies at Naropa University in 2000, he lived in India and Nepal for eight years, which gave him the opportunity to immerse himself in the Tibetan language and spend more time in solitary retreat.

Since 2003, Cortland has interpreted for various Tibetan lamas and taught courses on Buddhism and Tibetan language throughout the world. He founded the Rimé Foundation in 2004 and, under the direction of Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, created the Tergar Institute in 2006. As a translator, Cortland is a member of the Nitartha Translation Network and has worked extensively with the Dharmachakra Translation Committee. His publications include Entrance to the Great Perfection: A Guide to the Dzogchen Preliminaries; Great Perfection, Volumes I & II; and Deity, Mantra, and Wisdom.

Cortland currently serves as Chairman of Tergar International and is an instructor for the Tergar Meditation Community. He lives with his wife and son in Madison, Wisconsin, where he is pursuing a PhD under the guidance of neuroscientist Dr. Richard Davidson at the University of Wisconsin's Center for Investigating Healthy Minds.
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