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Reflection is not Correction

Melong
Episode No. 93

What is reflection and how is it useful? How can we give reflection to others in a way that is helpful? A podcast from Satsang with Shambhavi

First Words from Podcast

There’s a kind of a mirror that’s used in Dzogchen practice and in divination. It’s called a Melong, which means mirror in Tibetan. They’re made out of brass or silver. Some of you might have seen me wear one. The one I have is made out of five traditional metals. They’re round and they have a naturally reflective surface.

They’re used for a certain kind of very high level divination where someone can look into the Melong, ask a question, and actually see the answer reflected in the mirror. This was how Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche found his way out of Tibet. They had planned a certain route, but when they got to the main road on that route, it was overrun by the Chinese army. So Chogyam Trungpa did Melong divination to decide which way to go.

Most Dzogchen teachers wear Melongs while they are teaching and maybe all the time. When a teacher wears a Melong, it’s a living symbol of seeing your own real nature reflected in the teacher. You look at the teacher, and you see your own essence nature reflected back to you. This is the essence of transmission. So this is what the Melong stands for. Of course it’s also used for direct transmission which is what divination is.

There’s also reflection happening in the community. When you’re around people who are on the same path as you, who have some similar aspirations and View, and when you’re working with community as a spiritual practice, then in some ways that community also becomes a Melong. The community reflects your nature to you if you’re using it in the right way.