The reason we rely on the Vajra master is that we have already tried many different methods to wake ourselves up, but none of them really worked. We set our alarm clock for the next morning and then in the morning it beeps with a very unconfident beep. When this feeble beep happens, our great samsaric command is to move a hand with tremendous habitual power and press the snooze button. Then we go back to our comfortable samsaric sleep. We go back again to the dreams and nightmares to which we are attached. Fifteen minutes later, the alarm clock beeps again. Again we press the snooze button. We don't have this faith, this confidence, in the inconceivable truth that can wake us up. This goes on for ages. That's why the Hinayana and Mahayana journeys take so long. With deep compassion, sharp observations, and arresting metaphors, the Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche explicates The Aspiration of Samantabhadra for both new and experienced practitioners. This Dzogchen prayer explores the different manifestations of rigpa, our basic awareness in daily life, and constitutes a set of instructions for refining the path of practice. Given as a series of talks in Germany and the United States, Penetrating Wisdom includes the text of the prayer, Rinpoche's always-lively commentary, and lucid answers to questions posed by his students.
"One of the most brilliant Tibetan Buddhist teachers of his generation."—Sogyal Rinpoche
"Ponlop Rinpoche’s lively commentary, grounded in his own experience and profound learning, can awaken in the attentive reader something of the Naked Awareness that in any given moment is available behind the theater of the conceptual mind and ego-driven emotions. We can discover Naked Awareness by overcoming duality-based doubt and attachment. Everything else, as Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche would say, is sour grapes."—Georg Feuerstein, author of The Deeper Dimension of Yoga
"Inspiringly presents the powerful aspiration which makes it impossible for all beings not to attain buddhahood. . . . Rinpoche makes difficult concepts understandable and assisted me to situate Dzogchen in the Vajrayana tradition. The inclusion of question-and-answer sessions between Rinpoche and his students also helped me to grapple with new ideas."—Thar Lam