Q+A w/Andrew | 76 | April 21st, 2022

Transcript → Q+A w/Andrew |#76|

Andrew started this session answering questions submitted in advance, and followed up with a rich discussion with live questions and offerings.

Submitted questions

  • I was reading The Land of Bliss, when I came across the passage which denied women entrance into Amitabha’s Sukhavati, and insisted that they not only aspire to be reborn as men but should feel disgust with their female body. I remember you saying this was not true, as there is no gender in Amitabha’s Pure Land. Can you elucidate?
    It felt off-putting and I wondered if Tara had a Pure Land, so I googled it, and came upon an article about Tara’s Pure Land in the Buddhist Weekly. It described her pure land as full of verdant forests, waterfalls, birds and peaceful wildlife. And interestingly it said Tara’s Pure land was in Potala, Potala being Avalokiteshvara’s pure land, which… is in Amitabha’s Sukhavati! Have you come across anything about this?
  • What’s the difference between lucid dreaming and astral travel (OBE)?
  • Is it possible or have you ever spoken to your subconscious mind in a lucid dream and asked it to make it easier for you to have more frequent lucid dreams? I once read that affirmations spoken to your subconscious mind in a lucid dream are many times more effective than affirmations when you’re awake. Do you have any experience with this?

Interesting Q&A about gender and The Pure Lands. Ties into the discussion with Ian Baker about the same subject. Obviously, there are shades of interpretations for many of the teachings and initiatives connected with discussing the Dharma, as we seek out various interpretations and contemplations on the journey to our own conclusions.

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That’s why I’m only a curious agnostic, and don’t want to become a Buddhist :wink: but now I wonder why Andrew calls himself an agnostic. Practicing all the Mantras each day - in my opinion you have to belief in that stuff, haven’t you?
As you mention, Barry, I still have to find my way to my own conclusions. I just was more than astonished that Seth II (Entity) seems to be more or less the same metaphysical ‘construct’ as Amitabha. After reading the Seth Material, because I wanted to understand why lucid dreaming author Robert Waggoner likes it, I now wanted to find out why Andrew is fond of the Pure Lands doctrine - What now (just a loud question to myself, and not sure if it is interesting for you, sorry)?

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Andrew uses the term “curious” to describe himself, meaning, I think, a willingness to look for “truth” or “wisdom” wherever it may be. It may be everywhere! He also acknowledges his own perceived orientations (prejudices), such as “liberal democrat” and operates trying to keep his orientations in check, until perhaps challenged by perceived orthodoxies that don’t make sense to him (only men can enter Sukhavati . . . ).

I am drawn to his work having a similar “curious” background, and with a Tibetan Buddhist wife of 45 years, it rubs off. The older I get, the more it makes sense, and the more some of the cultural things (only men can . . . ) can be seen as traditions on the way out. “Fiddler on the Roof” had it right about Traditions, they change, albeit slowly. I remember Sir Edmund Hillary telling me once that it was ultimately a good thing that Tibet was forced into the modern world by the Chinese invasion because the feudal system was, while enlightened in some respects, very oppressive at the same time. My wife often acknowledges that in the old days she might never have met all the Rinpoche’s and wonderful people now available to the world, since the 1960s Tibetan diaspora. Auspicious posting since I just saw a notice that my NC membership automatically renewed today.

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Thanks to the unknown person asking the question at min. 16:30 :sparkling_heart:
This is also a personal goal of myself, but only an also-ran, what to do in my next LD. I will put it on first place now!

And I will try to formulate a new question for the next session about these different ‘doctrines’ that are fascinating for me, but leave me too skeptical to concentrate on one concept/tradition only and do the practices by heart with devotion and compassion. The Pure Land Mantra, the Dream Yoga Mantras and generation state visualizations - Zen as an alternative?
That’s why I hope to have more lucid dreams in the future and more chances to explore for myself :grinning:

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