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Cycle of Day and Night Paperback – April 1, 2000

4.8 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

The Cycle Of Day And Night by Namkhai Norbu is a practical guide to a fundamental practice of the Dzogchen system of Tibetan Buddhism, presented in a clear and direct manner. It is written by an acknowledge contemporary master of that ancient tradition. Central to Dzogchen, the "Great Perfection", is contemplation -- the immediate experience of the primordial state of the individual, the unconditioned nature of the mind. This nature of the mind transcends the specific contents of mind, the incessant flow of thoughts reflecting our social, cultural, and psychological conditioning. Based on the teaching by Garab Dorje, the first human master of the Dzogchen lineage, The Cycle Of Day And Night gives a translation of the author's Tibetan Text, together with a commentary drawn from the author's extensive oral explanations. Actual methods are given for entering into contemplation and integrating it with our activities during the 24 hour cycle of day and night. --Midwest Book Review

Language Notes

Text: English, Tibetan (translation)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 126 pages
  • Publisher: Barrytown/Station Hill Press, Inc.; 2 Revised edition (April 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0882680404
  • ISBN-13: 978-0882680408
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.3 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #340,108 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Namkhai Norbu is an amazing teacher: clear and precise. In this translation of the Longde Series of Dzogchen Teachings, Garab Dorje (Ancient Dzogchen Big-Wig)shows how to maintain contemplation Day and Night. Wonderful introduction, excellent translation of the Text, amazing commentary to follow; Norbu makes the Evening, Night, and Morning practices simple and easy to understand. This text is a kind of Dream-Yoga/Daily-Yoga cream center. It gives you ways to smooth the edges of your Dzogchen practice. I found it easy to read and informative: a real Boon!
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Format: Paperback
Of the 9 Norbu books I've read so far, this is one of the top 3 (the other two are "The Supreme Source" and "The Mirror"). His books tend to be rather short though and are very readable. He is one of the contemporary masters of Dzogchen, the highest teaching in the Nyingma (old translation) tradition of Tibet. This is one of the 4 main contemporary schools of Tibetan Buddhism. He also has a magazine called "The Mirror" that you can subscribe to and gives seminars/teachings around the country (see the Snow Lion Bulletin for announcements). This particular book takes the teachings through a typical day (thus, the title). Dzogchen includes the view that all that we see, hear, etc. is empty of independent being (like the reflection of the moon in a lake). While this is also part of the Prajnaparamita works on Mahayana Buddhism as well (see Conde's translations), Dzogchen takes it farther into the View of the Ground of Being or Dharmakaya and its practice of Trekcho as well as the maintenance, during post-meditation, of spontaneous presence. It is quite profound. Enjoy this book, but read his others as well since this book is not completely comprehensive.
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This short book is a clear and simple yet thorough introduction to the dzogchen vision and practice based on a teaching given in 1983 (in Massachusetts) by Namkhai Norbu. The first half consists of an essay by the editor (John Reynolds). This helps even the most novice student understand and appreciate the context and some of the unique terminology and distinctions employed by the tradition (especially the critical distinctions of "contemplation" vs "meditation", and "mind" vs "nature of mind", which are not found so clearly in other Buddhist teachings).

The second half consists of a translation of Norbu Rinpoche's (12 page) root text (The Cycle of Day and Night), and his auto-commentary (again heavily filtered through his translator/editor). The intent and import of these teachings is not religious or philosophical, but practical - their application to the experience of pure presence (rig-pa) in our own continuum of days and nights. The tone is fresh and immediate. "This awareness (shes-pa) or pure presence (rig-pa) of which we speak here arises at the very first fresh instant before the mind has had a chance to come into operation, functioning dualistically in terms of subject and object." (pg.68)

Even though these teachings are simple, they are also dense, and best practiced with the personal guidance of a master like Namkhai Norbu so that the intellectual (translation) process becomes less important than the direct transmission and realization aspect. So as clear as these teachings may be they are probably most useful as a refresher for someone already traveling this path.

(Also highly recommended is his more recent Longchenpa's Advice from the Heart)
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Format: Paperback
In this work, Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche, an eminent Dzogchen master of modern times, gives a direct way how to practice the Essence of Tibetan Yogic Practice called "Dzogchen" - "the Great Perfection". Please bare in mind that the openness of the teacher's style - with no unclear mystics - is a gift rare to find nowadays. Good luck in your journey to Self-Realization!
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Format: Paperback
Spirituality is all about deconditioning from past imprints and karmic traces. With other words: how do I live "rigpa" or primordial clarity instead of beeing isolated in a bubble of conditioning. The entry into non-duality is maybe the greatest accomplishment humanly possible. If I had to recommend a clear and direct synopsis of the tools that may lead to such an acomplishment it would be this book of about 100 pages. Here you have the highest teaching I know of.
Now, from understanding the words to starting to live the message took me at least 20 years. As Krishnamurti said: If you get there "You" will not be there. So don't be astonished if you stumble over a few blocks.
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Format: Paperback
I recieved this fantastic and usefull book ! I recomend it for everyone who want to improve his/her spirituality in a deep way. It's suppose to have some knowledge about buddhism - specialy Dzogchen or Vajrayana. It's a important book for whom wants to improve lucid dreams, as well.
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Format: Paperback
"The Cycle of Day and Night" is exactly what the book's subtitle says it is: "An Essential Tibetan Text on the Practice of Contemplation." If you are serious about learning how to practice (or improve your practice of) Dzogchen, the highest, or most direct and immediate, form of Tibetan meditation, then consider this text "must" reading. I've been reading spiritual books for forty-plus years, and I have not encountered a better Buddhist text on contemplation. I teach meditation, and I tell my students to get this book.

The book is clearly written and nicely edited (by John Reynolds), and once you "digest" its message and are able to practice Dzogchen--nondual primal awareness--you'll be on the highway to Buddhahood--though no one can tell you when you'll arrive at your final Destination.

A final point: Even though this is a fine text on Dzogchen practice, author-guru Namkhai Norbu does not understand the Trikaya (the Buddhist Triple Body), and this misunderstanding is also evident in the writings of his students and associates, most notably John Reynolds and Tenzin Wangyal. Consequently, even though this is the best current Buddhist text on contemplation, eventually someone who truly understands the Trikaya will write a better one.
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