Four great modes of liberation

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From Dzogchen Ponlop's Mind Beyond Death's discussion of the Dzogchen Buddhist tradition of the four great modes of liberation:





  • decide directly on one thing: this very moment of consciousness is self-liberation; these very experiences of emotions -- of suffering and happiness that are arising -- are the expression of our naked awareness
  • directly recognize our nature, the essential nature of our mind. Apart from this very experience of nowness, this very mind, there is nothing to be pointed out. We recognize that this is it.
  • gain conference in liberation: this very mind that we are experiencing now, in this present moment, is self-liberated







  • Primordial liberation: When a moment of passion arises in a vivid and sharp manner ... it is already free from concepts; therefore, it is primordially and utterly free.
  • Self-liberation: Like a snake that simply uncoils itself form its own not, passion returns to its natural state, already in the nature of transcendence. We cannot purify or transform passion except through passion itself.
  • Naked liberation occurs when the mind observes itself. When passion arises and we look at it nakedly and straightforwardly, the very process of looking liberates the experience of passion. That vibrant, radiant, quality shows us the actual insubstantial nature of mind.
  • Complete liberation occurs when passion is further liberated as mind observes the experience of passion again and again. In the first moment of the arising of passion, we look at it directly, and it liberates itself. In the second moment, we look directly again and it liberates itself further and further, or more completely.