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Essays listed in chronological order starting with most recent. For archives, please see previous volumes below.
  • Writer's pictureRudy Bauer

The Luminosity of Language and Symbol

Rudolph Bauer, Ph.D., Author Erin Johannesen, M.A., M.D. Editor

1. In The Treasury of Words and Meanings, Longchenpa  [Longchen Rabjampa, a14th century Dzogchen master and mystical poet] elaborates how the mind must be integrated into the awareness field….The dissociated mind must be integrated into the base of awareness.  The most basic experience of dissociatedness is between the mind and the base of awareness.


2. In integrating the mind into awareness, the luminosity of the field infuses the mind, infuses thinking into thought, infuses fantasy into the organ of imagination, infuses senses into luminous sensuousness and knowingness, infuses and illuminates memory, infuses affects into illuminated affective states that give clear orientation to the immediacy of the situation.  Integrating the mind into awareness infuses the dense body into the illuminated body; the body becomes the vajra vase…the body of light holding the light. 

3.  Language is the house of being.  Language helps us hold the sense of being…internalize the sense.  Languaging in the field of awareness as the field helps us hold the sense of being… internalize the sense.  Languaging in the field of awareness as the field helps bring forth the experience of the field for one’s self and others.  The languaging integrates an experience into the mind, into personality.  Languaging  experientially near opens the deeper language…wisdom speech…sapientia…the speech of light, luminous words, vajra speech.  [Sapientia is a Latin word meaning wisdom or discernment.]

There are two methods, two methods, for referencing language.  The first is bringing the thinking function into the luminous field wherein there is an infusion of the thinking function, illuminated thinking, clear thinking, thinking oriented by the field and to the field of awareness.  And second, there is the more profound method of the language of the vase body.  The illuminated body begins to be manifest as a felt sense, and this inner most felt sense is used [in languaging an experience]. 

And so the four levels of speech begin to open within us.  Light manifests as sound, sound as movement and as symbols, and the symbols manifest as words and language.  This language is direct, and these subtle sounds and syllables are the very manifestation of awareness.  Just as Bodhidharma[a Buddhist monk who lived during the 5th/6th centuries C.E. and is traditionally depicted as bringing Buddhism to China] said centuries ago, there is the transmission beyond words and letters, a transmission that does not belong to any tradition, which is the nature of human consciousness itself, which is the Buddha.  So, there is also transmission arising out of the subtle, embodied awareness field within nirmanakaya that is both the directness of expression and the directness of perception.  There is oneness of perception and language as symbol.  This oneness is not the analytic mind as such, but the knowingness of the embodied awareness field.  The vajra vase body is multi-dimensional and pervasive.  Perceiving what is as it is, and understanding…what is as it is…understanding and perception are the same.

4.  To be in awareness of awareness is to be in understanding, and the different dimensions of awareness will reveal and manifest different understandings that take place within the dimensions….OF NIRMANAKAYA, OF SAMBHOGAKAYA. 

5.  Understanding is both direct perception of luminous emptiness and the experiences that the wonderful mind brings forth….variations and contradictions of the flesh dimension, of energetic light, and of unbound openness. Non-conceptual knowingness is the base of understanding of the nature of awareness and of the world as awareness…to experience the completeness of knowingness, a person must integrate the mind (this [thinking, feeling, and memory] dimension) into primordial awareness…this [completeness or integration] is realization in this life…this is the rainbow body...this is beatific vision.  Garab Dorje wrote three essential statements that sum up these vital teachings [of Dzogchen]:  One experiences a direct transmission; one recognizes and understands the nature of one’s awareness, and one has no doubt [of the directness and completeness of the experience].

[Garab Dorje, whose name means “Indestructible Joy,” in Sanskrit, was an early  adept who is regarded as  the first human holder of realized knowledge of Ati Yoga or Dzogchen.]

6.   Explanation and understanding are not the same….and the unfolding of the essence of the human being is the understanding of being of the beingness of the being. I can experience the unfolding essence of the human being from understanding beingness as my own self.

7.  Awareness of awareness leads to logos or thought….not the thinking, thinking, thinking of redundant analytic mind, but rather the understanding that arises within the embodied consciousness, within the vase body and within what arises as thought ….awareness can manifest as thought.  This thought is not at all conceptual, like an idea, or ideation, or one and one is two.  It is a non-conceptual thought …this thought is understanding as a laying out and gathering in:  The bringing forth of depth and breadth of experiencing the truth of the situation that I am and you are…it is not self-enclosed ideation.  It is perception that is distinctly not thought, but can be expressed and elaborated in thinking.

8.  The speech that arises as sapientia, wisdom speech, is speech as light. Luminous words that transmit the nature of the field through language, through luminous meaning and sound…luminous syllables.  This capacity is within everyone, and the great masters have mastered this capacity…and with knowingness and skillful means, this speech is naturally our own authentic words within the luminous channel of light. We bring forth the light within each other through both language transmissions and non-language transmissions. Speech in the field from the experientially felt sense naturally brings forth this capacity and ability.

9.  All being is being with one another, and from that arises first and foremost the structure of our existence.  The beingness of being is a shared event…out of the oneness of beings, being arises and is manifest in a being.  A singular being arises out of plurality.  Language transcends plurality and brings forth the oneness of being.

10. The power of languaging brings forth the experience of the field of being through invocation, which arises out of language. 

Out of the field emerges the mysterious dynamic of speech and words and letters to bring forth awareness.  To bring forth the light is both mysterious and magnificent.  The more your awareness of awareness is rooted in the ground of awareness, rooted in the light, the more you can bring forth the light through the manifestation process.  This can be both in ones self and in others.  The use of words and letters can be conjoined with the resonance of gesture and the resonance of radiance.

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