“The Dzogchen teachings are neither a philosophy, nor religious doctrine, nor cultural tradition. Understanding the message of the teachings means discovering one’s own true condition, stripped of all the self-deception and falsifications which the mind creates. The very meaning of the Tibetan term Dzogchen, ’Great Perfection’, refers to the primordial state of every individual and not to any transcendent reality”

Chögyal Namkhai Norbu from Dzogchen: The Self Perfected State. Ithaca, NY: Snow Lion Publications, 1989.

The particular method of Dzogchen is called the Path of Self-Liberation, and to apply it nothing need be renounced, purified, or transformed. Whatever arises as one’s karmic vision is used as the path. The great master Pha Tampa Sangye [South Indian Yogin of the 11 century (ed.)] once said: "It is not the circumstances which arise as one’s karmic vision that condition a person into the dualistic state; it is a person’s own attachment that enables what arises to condition him.”

“If this attachment is to be cut through in the most rapid and effective way, the mind’s spontaneous capacity to self-liberate must be brought into play. The term self-liberation should not, however, be taken as implying that there is some ’self’ or ego there to be liberated. It is a fundamental assumption…at the Dzogchen level, that all phenomena are void of self-nature. ’Self -Liberation’, in the Dzogchen sense, means that whatever manifests in the field of experience of the practitioner is allowed to arise just as it is, without judgement of it as good or bad, beautiful or ugly. And in that same moment, if there is no clinging, or attachment, without effort, or even volition, whatever it is that arises, whether as a thought or as a seemingly external event, automatically liberates itself, by itself, and of itself. Practicing in this way the seeds of the poison tree of dualistic vision never even get a chance to sprout, much less to take root and grow.”

Chögyal Namkhai Norbu from Crystal and the way of light. Ithaca, NY: Snow Lion Publications, 2000.

"Not Sutra, not Tantra, Dzogchen does not see itself as the high point of any hierarchy of levels, and is not a gradual path. Dzogchen is the Path of Self-Liberation, and not the Path of Transformation, so it does not use visualization as a principle practice; but it is beyond limits, and practices of any of the other levels can be used as secondary practices. The principle practice of Dzogchen is to enter directly into non-dual contemplation, and to remain in it, continuing to deepen it until one reaches Total Realization"

Chögyal Namkhai Norbu from Crystal and the way of light. Ithaca, NY: Snow Lion Publications, 2000.