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Here is a description on Rigpa from the book Dzogchen Practice of Contemplation.


It is a little long and is from the section describing Shine without Object.


Learning in this way to remain in relaxed presence,

at a certain moment you find yourself in a state in

which even though more or less thoughts continue to

arise they do not disturb your presence and they vanish

by themselves. That is, they self- liberate, because this

state is not conditioned by the habitual continuity of



Particularly evident in this state is pure presence,

called rigpa, non-dual awareness.


Discernible within it, are three distinct fundamental

elements ( ne-gyu- rig):


1) nepa, the calm state, like a still sheet of water;

2) gyuwa, the movement of thoughts, like a wave;

3) rigpa, the recognition of the presence of this wave.


These three elements, however, are all present

simultaneously in the same condition. Only by being

in the state of Shine can you ascertain this concretely.


In this state there is nothing to seek and nothing to



Typically, beginners think that the calm state of

Shine is something to pursue, and that, conversely, the

arising of thoughts is an obstacle that can disturb the

calm state, which must thus be avoided. However, once

you finally find yourself in the state of union of ne-gyurig

and continue in this presence then you understand

that this is the authentic state of Shine.


In this way you discover that quietude, nepa, and

the arising of thoughts, gyuwa, are both present.

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A practitioner should not stray into judgement but
instead, remaining in the state of presence see arising
thoughts as fish leaping from the surface of the sea, or
perceives this state as an ocean in which both
characteristics are evident. The depths are still, yet the
surface ripples as waves form.

In this case, too, you should not make a distinction
between the two aspects, or deem one a good state and
the other a state of disturbance.

Rather you should seek to be present. if there is calm
remain present in the state of calm; if 'the fish leaps' seek to
be present in that very movement, in the 'leap' of the fish.

Acting in this way you should gradually relax the
attention more and more; if you don't relax, this
perception (of simultaneity) will not occur any more.

In this phase of progress in meditation,

the practitioner must seek to be ' in' the leap itself, in the

This means that now you no longer need to
concentrate your attention as much as possible (as
done at the beginning with the letter A) . Instead,
conversely, relaxing more and more you come to
discover that the state of the 'leap of the fish' and the
state of calm are present at the same time.

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Then it seems that there are two states.

1. One state, in which the slightest amount of intention is
still present.

This is the state in which even though thoughts arise there
is always awareness (trenshe14); the latter is not a thought
but simply presence of mind. (At times it is possible to
confuse presence of mind and thoughts- to us awareness
may seem a thought- and at times instead to mistake a
thought that has arisen for awareness.) In this case the
only important thing is to see whether or not there is
judgment, whether or nor one is pursuing the thought. If
thoughts are 'pursued' and created, even only in a light
manner, this means there is judgment.

If, instead, while observing my state I notice thoughts,
such as for example: "Here, now I am in the calm state" or
"Here, now a thoughts is arising", there is a way in which I
can be present 'in' the thought itself
 without engaging the
mechanisms of judgment. If I had to say or explain what
is happening in that moment, on the one hand it is utterly
impossible for me to find the words, but on the other hand
I retain a precise memory of it.

This presence of awareness is very important, it must not
be lacking, otherwise the practice of Shine ends up sinking
into a sleepy state.

2. A natural state of total spontaneity.

This is what is called rigpa, the recognition of pure
. Presence can be recognized above all in the
condition where there are thoughts, that is, in the
condition of 'movement'.

When during practice there are more thoughts (that is,
'more fish are leaping') there is also the opportunity to
recognize presence as the manifestation of wisdom, and, at
the same time, together with the movement of thoughts one
can also recognize the presence of the state of calm, nepa.
You must understand that fundamentally all three states
are at the same level: the state of calm, nepa, is movement,
the state of movement itself, gyuwa, is calm, and rigpa is
pure recognition of your own state, that is present in both.

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Good stuff Tom. 

I don’t remember many technical details about the Norbu Dzogchen book I read, but I can report that while reading and after reading it I had a deep relaxed awareness that came through from reading the teachings.

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20 hours ago, FaXin said:

Good stuff Tom. 

I don’t remember many technical details about the Norbu Dzogchen book I read, but I can report that while reading and after reading it I had a deep relaxed awareness that came through from reading the teachings.

Like you could feel the transmission within the book?

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