Three kinds of ignorance

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An old blind man groping for his way with a cane, the image for ignorance in the Wheel of Life

Three kinds of ignorance (Wyl. ma rig pa gsum)

  1. Causal ignorance of single identity (rgyu bdag nyid gcig pu'i ma rig pa)
  2. Innate ignorance (lhan cig skyes pa'i ma rig pa)
  3. Imputational ignorance (kun tu brtags pa'i ma rig pa)

Alternative Translations

  • 1. unenlightenment of the single self-cause, 2. innate unenlightenment, 3. unenlightenment of imaginings (Thondup)
  • 1. ignorance of individual selfhood, 2. co-emergent ignorance, 3. ignorance of the imaginary (Dorje & Kapstein)
  • 1. catalytic dimmed awareness of the single identity, 2. coemergent dimmed awareness, 3. dimmed awareness of rampant reification (Germano)
  • 1. single-nature ignorance (Erik Pema Kunsang)

Further Reading

  • Tulku Thondup, The Practice of Dzogchen (Ithaca: Snow Lion, 1996), pages 54-55.
  • ‘The Light of Wisdom’ Volume 1. Root text by Padmasambhava and commentary by Jamgön Kongtrül the Great. Published by Shambhala Publications ISBN 0-87773-566-2, page79