There are two kinds of ignorance: coemergent and conceptual ignorance. In the moment after seeing our essence, it almost immediately slips away. We get distracted and we start to think of something. Coemergent ignorance is simply to forget. Conceptual ignorance comes in the moment after forgetting, forming thought after thought. As one thought follows after another, a long train of thoughts can develop.Forgetting and thinking – that is the two-fold ignorance, coemergent ignorance and conceptual ignorance. If these two were purified, we would be buddhas. But as long as the coemergent and conceptual aspects of ignorance are not purified, we are sentient beings.
Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche
from the book Vajra Speech: A Commentary on The Quintessence of Spiritual Practice
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