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Hi guys,

Does anyone practice Tonglen here? If so, how often do you do it? Please can you share your experiences of it?



  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    I do it occasionally. My experience is it should be experienced, if you feel it may be of benefit. My personal experience is that of a calming effect.

  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran

    I’ve only just tried it for the first time, it gave an interesting sensation of a kind of ‘knocking or tapping’ on the inbreath which became gradually more intense. Quite unusual.

  • FoibleFullFoibleFull Canada Veteran

    It is part of the traditional of Tibetan Buddhism, and my Tibetan Lama teaches it.
    The benefit of Tonglen is that is helps diminish our attachments and aversions and increase our tendency to feel compassion. It doesn't actually "do" anything (one student asked if visualizing taking in the suffering of others would actually BE taking it in, and our teacher laughed and say "no, no".) By visualizing the taking in of the suffering of others, we both increase our compassion for others while also relaxing in the face of the idea of suffering. And by giving out our own well-being, we are training ourselves to let go of our attachments.
    How often do I do it? Not often anymore. Tonglen is of most benefit when we are feeling besieged, but in order to do it skillfully, we need to have practiced the visualizations.

  • lobsterlobster Veteran
    edited July 2018

    Thanks @FoibleFull very useful explanation.
    Visualization in Tantra has an emotive and overwhelming component if done well BUT if overwhelmed or thinking it more than a generated skilfull means ... well ...

    For example I regularly allow demons to feast on my negative qualities (they like that shit) HOWEVER if I believed myself beseiged by Mahakala and pals I would have to ground myself in the funny farm and grow Boddhisatvas that eat demons ...

    Snap fingers, all mind projections gone ...

  • CarameltailCarameltail UK Veteran
    edited August 2018

    Yes I have a bit but not often.
    Interestingly reverses the taking in good breathing out pain practice that can also be done, but this mode of practice has its benefit in releasing out the good and allowing that to spread. I don't do it for others or compassion or such it is more like a general overall spreading of good and a transformation of bad.

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