Saturday, January 25, 2014

New Interview with Zeena: The Breaking of Taboo and Transgression of Social Norms in Religion and Culture - part 4

UKZN: How do you think Tantrics and Jesus would view society today?

Zeena: Well, that’s two separate things because we are talking about a group of many people [who've continued an unbroken lineage of practices to this day] and one enlightened being [born in the very distant past]. I think it would be arrogant to speak for Jesus and to try to imagine how he would see society today (laughter).

So as far as Tantrics go… well there are many different levels of perception and awareness which gradually develop. So a beginning level Tantric may view society, in perhaps a slightly negative way, like it's something to separate themselves from in order to gain better adepthood of their practices.

But maybe a more advanced Tantric would be able to experience the integration of all things without prejudice or personal agendas. He or she might see society somewhat as a manifestation of a kind of collective hallucination and not take it too seriously… maybe view it as a passing dream, which can be enjoyed as either beautiful, or horrific, or anything at all, but not taken so seriously, it's not something to be too concerned about. It is real and actually happening but it is also not real, and then it is both simultaneously, as well as neither at all.

If you consider the metaphor of dreaming, when you go to sleep at night there are issues that happen within your dreams. If you are very engaged in the dream, those issues seem very important until you wake up and then you think “Oh god, I’m glad I’m out of that dream!”.

Some people view this lifetime like a nightmare and there are a lot of people who view society as a nightmare…while others might view it as one big party or a carefree existence. But that's only one level of perception and understanding.

As a Tantric practitioner becomes more advanced, she may begin to see this society as a continuous pure land, as a paradise realm, whether within dreams, or waking states, or during personal hardships, sickness or dying…that is, when one's at a very advanced level of understanding. Because there's an understanding that all phenomena that we are experiencing right now in this lifetime is impermanent, it's transient, it's illusory, it's is both happening and it’s not happening. Therefore there is no reason to really be too concerned.

UKZN: My Guru has said “Nirvana and Samsara are One”.

Zeena: Yes, that’s from the Tibetan Buddhist Dorje Chang Thungma (lineage prayer) I practice everyday - “Samsara and nirvana inseparable; In all of [our] births may [we] never be separate from the perfect guru, enjoying dharma's splendor.” It's part of a prayer which is basically the foundation of Maha-mudra practice, passed down from the Great Vajradhara (founder of Vajrayana Buddhism), to all of the individual Maha-Siddhas (Great Accomplished Beings) - an unbroken oral transmission passed down through many generations. Its purpose is to awaken the practitioner to the realization after many years, or even lifetimes of undergoing these practices, that there is no separation at all between all things.

The preceding is an excerpt from:
An Interview with Zeena Schreck – September & October 2013
for “The Breaking of Taboo and Transgression of Social Norms in Religion and Culture Research Project by Che Chetty at the SCHOOL OF RELIGION, PHILOSOPHY AND CLASSICS UNIVERSITY OF KWAZULU NATAL, SOUTH AFRICA


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