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Rang rig

From Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia
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I have often mentioned why, in my opinion, it is incorrect to translate rang rig as "self-awareness" or "intrinsic awareness". Beyond the fact that rig pa means "knowledge", and is the antonym of ma rig pa ignorance, there is much confusion regarding the compound "rang rig".

Many people incorrectly assume that rang rig is a contraction of "rang gis rig pa" i.e. self-knowing, as indicated by the instrumental particle gis. The compound is in fact a contraction of rang gi rig pa which we can understand from the genetive particle gi as we can clearly see in the comment on the following line of the sgra thal gyur: /rang rig rtog pa kun 'bral bas/ [Adzom Chogar edition].

The commentary for this line found in the sgra thal gyur commentary reads /de yang gzhan las ma byung bas rang rig pa/ i.e. "Further, since it does not come from elsewhere, [it is] one's vidyā".

Further proof of the above reading may by found in the rendering of this citation in the recently mentioned Aural Lineage, dgongs pa zang thal, vol 4, pg. 335, Simla edition] which gives a slightly different form of the citation: /rang gi rig pa kun grol bas/ i.e. "Since one's vidyā is free from all..."

That the author of the Aural Lineage glossess rang rig with rang gi rig pa is significant, in that it shows how Dzogchen masters of the past naturally think about this construct.

Source

www.atikosha.org