with Jim Valby
Friday March 7, 7–8.30 pm
Primordial means timeless, eternal, atemporal, primal, original, from the beginning, ever-existing, already and forever, beyond cause and effect.
Knowledge refers to oral, symbolic and direct modes of transmission, through which the primordial source manifests its wisdom-energies inside time corresponding to the specific circumstances of each sentient being. Everything is knowledge, without any limitations.
The essence of primordial knowledge is pure perfect presence – unceasing empty luminous wisdom-energy manifestations. ‘Enlightenment’ is just a word without any meaning. Enlightenment does not really exist. It is total fantasy to search for enlightenment. Pure perfect presence already pervades everything as self-perfected primordial enlightenment.
There is nothing to conceive with a view.
There is nothing to eliminate, create or change through meditation.
There is nothing to correct with behaviour.
There is nothing to achieve or maintain as a goal.
Sat March 8–Tue March 11
Sessions from 10 am–1 pm + 3–6 pm:
Santi Maha Sangha Base
We will study and practice details of primordial knowledge as presented in Dzogchen teachings, especially from Chogyal Namkhai Norbu’s The Precious Vase.
Possible topics include:
Five Marvelous Aspects of Primordial Knowledge
Five Principles of Primordial Knowledge
Five Necessary Capacities for Primordial Knowledge
Six Unlimited Aspects of Primordial Knowledge
Ten Ways to Obstruct Primordial Knowledge
Secret Refuge in Primordial Knowledge
Jim Valby was born on 3 September 1946 and grew up in Rochester, New York, USA, where he attended Roman Catholic elementary and high schools. He graduated from Middlebury College with a Physics degree and worked as an engineer.
From 1971 to 1983 he attended graduate school while driving a school bus, programming computers, teaching violin, and running a nuclear reactor. He earned Masters and Doctorate degrees in Tibetan Buddhism focusing on Shrisingha, Vimalamitra, and computers at the University of Saskatchewan under Professor Herbert Guenther.
In 1982 he participated in his first retreat with Chögyal Namkhai Norbu. Since 1989 he has lived in Western Massachusetts, near the Dzogchen Community’s North American base Tsegyalgar East, working on translations from Tibetan, transcripts of Chögyal Namkhai Norbu retreats, and other Dzogchen Community projects.
From 1999 to 2010 he led 121 Santi Maha Sangha (SMS) practice retreats. He is an authorized SMS instructor of the Base, First, and Second Levels. Some of his other translation work is listed here. Since 2003 he has also worked for the Ka-ter Translation Project.