Completion-Stage Teaching (大圓)


This calligraphy shows the characters “Dayuan” (大圓) – this is a Chinese translation of the Tibetan term “Dzogchen” (རྫོགས་ཆེན་), which means “Great Completion” or “Great Perfection”.  The character da (大) shows a person with outstretched arms – “big”, “great”, or “immeasurable”.  The character yuan (圓) shows “members encircled” – all parts integrated together; yuan also suggests the round shape of the full moon.

In Tibetan Buddhism, Dzogchen is considered the apex of the Nine Yanas, sometimes called Atiyoga – “utmost union” – the peak of the spiritual path.  The full moon.

Dzogchen is characterized by view, method, & fruition.  The view recognizes all beings as fundamentally luminous and complete by nature.  The method – although it sits atop the various tantric arts – the central Dzogchen method is to simply abide in naturalness without doing anything in particular.  Fruition is the direct experience of our nature unmediated by concepts or effort.  Dzogchen is thus considered a path of immediate awakening.

My wuweidao lineage teacher, Liu Ming, received Dzogchen transmission prior to being adopted into the Liu-family Daoist lineage.  Upon receiving Daoist transmission, he recognized that the Dao De Jing was essentially a pith Dzogchen scripture describing the utmost fruition of the spiritual path.  Rather than being a secret teaching reserved for advanced practitioners who have striven through successive stages however, the Dao De Jing sits as the original inspiration of Daoism.  Ming thus taught wuweidao as a non-conceptual abiding that sits at the basis – and apex – of Daoism.

What we refer to as wuweidao is thus a Daoist expression of Dzogchen.  Ming even named his school “Dayuan Circle”.  Our path is completion-stage teaching – it is NOT a path of progress or accumulation.

Much of Chinese Daoism is a path of learning and developing and working toward Dao.  Refining and transforming toward an exalted spiritual goal.  In our tradition, we encounter completion-stage at the very beginning – the “goal” (Dao-De) is already established by nature.  So we practice wuwei not as some strategy to advance toward Dao – we practice wuwei as a means to embody and express what is fundamentally so of itself.