..an Inkling of the Depth and Breadth of These EndeavorsNgondro also referred to as preliminary practice, vary depending on the Tibetan School (Nyingma in my case), the type (Dudjom in my case), the student's state of being upon commencement, and the Teacher giving the instructions.
My particular Root Teach gave me five practices to complete, each requiring 100,000 repetitions.
Consider this number of repetitions for a moment. If you are into physical fitness ask your self, "How many curls have I done? Ever?" If you are a programmer, ask yourself "How many short programs have I written? Ever?" If you target practice, ask yourself, "How many rounds have I fired? Ever?"
Then actually try to count, doing whatever it is you do, up until you've done "it" 100,000 times. Once you've accomplished 100,000 of anything with careful awareness, to the best of your ability, then you have a basis from which to understand and relate to these Tibetan Buddhist practices.
Prior to this accomplishment, one only thinks one knows, which is entirely different from true knowledge in any field of endeavor.
These five practices impact the physical, emotional, intellectual, and bio-magnetic being of a human. The more accurately and precise these practices are done, the deeper and longer lasting their effect is on one's physical, emotional, intellectual an bio-magnetic being.
These practices should ALWAYS be done under the guidance of a teacher who has had the appropriate training (usually a trained and recognized Vajra Master by a known lineage).
As of July 24th, I have completed the first, second, fourth, and fifth practice of 100,000. I am .05% finished with the third. My intent was to complete all five practices during this summer's remote mountain retreat, however with the new instructions from my Root Teacher, the remaining 99,625 accumulations will be done while I am collecting monies to go to Nepal.
The details of these practices are better explained by a Vajra Master of your selection.