Not Everything is Impermanent

Anything goes (almost).

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby undefineable » Fri Sep 13, 2013 12:34 pm

Astus wrote:In Yogacara they count six unconditioned dharmas. Space, analysed cessation, non-analysed cessation, motionless cessation, cessation of feeling and perception, suchness. As unconditioned they are permanent. At least they would be permanent if any of them meant a specific experience, instead of the lack of experience or a theoretical generalisation that they actually signify. In the same category we could put for instance impermanence itself, and impermanence is permanent, just like emptiness and no self. But again, they are simply conceptual explanations and not experience.
I guess you're saying that 'permanent dharmas' refers to characteristics of reality rather than to states of mind in and of themselves. Is it not the case, though, that such dharmas can atleast be 'experienced' indirectly as a deep-seated change in one's way of seeing things (which one might of course nonetheless 'back-slide' from up to a point), rather than via some soupy altered state of consciousness?
"Removing the barrier between this and that is the only solution" {Chogyam Trungpa - "The Lion's Roar"}
undefineable
 
Posts: 499
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 1:34 am

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby Astus » Fri Sep 13, 2013 1:02 pm

jeeprs wrote:So this level of perception is beyond 'experience' in the sense we generally understand the term, which is the experience of the natural man in the world. That is why the Buddha understands such things as the factors that cause beings to be reborn, and which drive the whole process of birth and death; and why he is said to be 'lokkutara', 'world-transcending'.


Yogic direct perception (yogipratyaksa) is still a form of experience, something that occurs and passes, that depends on causes and conditions. A definition from Mipham's Blazing Lights of the Sun and Moon (p 41):
"unconfused knowledge free from conceptualization arising in dependence on the dominant condition of the yogas of shamatha and vipashyana."
Also (p 45):
"By the yogin's meditating well in accord with the precepts taught by the guru, the ultimate meaning of egolessness, the two emptinesses, and three and countless kinds are seen. Moreover, in a single atom as many buddha fields as there are atoms, and limitless pure phenomenal worlds, the mandalas of countless buddhas, are seen and so forth. Clearly experiencing its own sphere, this is yogic direct perception."
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T2076p461b24-26)
User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4248
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby Astus » Fri Sep 13, 2013 1:14 pm

undefineable wrote:I guess you're saying that 'permanent dharmas' refers to characteristics of reality rather than to states of mind in and of themselves. Is it not the case, though, that such dharmas can atleast be 'experienced' indirectly as a deep-seated change in one's way of seeing things (which one might of course nonetheless 'back-slide' from up to a point), rather than via some soupy altered state of consciousness?


In Yogacara there is nothing outside mind, i.e. nothing outside the realm of experience. Space is simply the lack of a physical object. Cessations are various ends of causal continua. Suchness is the fact that there is no self. Therefore these are not experiences per se, but the lack of certain factors in experience. This corresponds to the usual explanation about buddha-nature that one only has to remove the adventitious stains in order to recover it.
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T2076p461b24-26)
User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4248
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby undefineable » Fri Sep 13, 2013 1:57 pm

Astus wrote:At least they would be permanent if any of them meant a specific experience, instead of the lack of experience or a theoretical generalisation that they actually signify.
Astus wrote:In Yogacara there is nothing _ _ outside the realm of experience.
Astus wrote:Therefore these are not experiences per se, but the lack of certain factors in experience.
{My emphases}
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Astus wrote:Yogic direct perception (yogipratyaksa) is still a form of experience, something that occurs and passes, that depends on causes and conditions.
Not to be obtuse, but your words as quoted above my dotted line (and not the Mipham quote you gave) give me the impression that you see 'yogic direct perception' is an inferior state, and that we should simply 'achieve' literal cessations (rather than transcendence) of mental activity. I've also read the translated term 'space' as referring to the nature of mind rather than to a 'lack of a physical object', as you put it.

If this impression is correct, can you explain why we shouldn't just calculate the correct speed of car crash needed to turn us into vegetables, orchestrate this event, and 'experience' (or rather 'un-experience') the karma of doing so by being reborn as beings whose minds are also too simple to experience ego - jellyfish perhaps? Of course, the first objection will be that a latent sense of Self etc. etc. will eventually rise again with positive karma/vipaka, but this seems to me to be missing the point, since it atleast achieves the objective of cessation on the level of experience (which you've emphasised as being the only thing that there is) for a while. I'm sure your philosophical posts just tell one part of the story for the sake of balance vis-a-vis other posts that might sound eternalist to some, but it all seems a bit prasangika-madhyamaka or even hinayana for my taste.
Astus wrote:This corresponds to the usual explanation about [b]buddha-nature that one only has to remove the adventitious stains in order to recover it.
{My emphases again} Here, I've 'selectively read' your words the other way 'round (i.e. as eternalist rather than nihilist), but I can't find where you resolve the apparent contradiction and explain where you find a 'middle way'. Certainly, buddha-nature is a phenomenon (for want of a better word) that I've not heard described as mere nothingness/non-existence or the like, and though the therevada schools apparently reject it, I'm skeptical that the parinirvana they advocate for the mind is simply the same state (absolute non-existence) as atheists claim everyone's mind enters at death. {Quotes available on request ;) }
"Removing the barrier between this and that is the only solution" {Chogyam Trungpa - "The Lion's Roar"}
undefineable
 
Posts: 499
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 1:34 am

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby Nothing » Fri Sep 13, 2013 2:53 pm

oushi wrote:All I know is that the only thing that does not change is not knowing.

Are you sure?.....as "not knowing" depends on something else.....who/what is it that not knows and what if it does not seek to know?.....then "not knowing" doesn't even exist at all.....so therefore, it can change, it cannot be permanent.....can it?

"Not Everything is Impermanent"

So what is permanent?.....is that not more important?
User avatar
Nothing
 
Posts: 92
Joined: Sun Aug 19, 2012 5:39 pm

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby Astus » Fri Sep 13, 2013 3:02 pm

undefineable wrote:give me the impression that you see 'yogic direct perception' is an inferior state, and that we should simply 'achieve' literal cessations (rather than transcendence) of mental activity. I've also read the translated term 'space' as referring to the nature of mind rather than to a 'lack of a physical object', as you put it.


Yogic perception is a term used in Pramana for meditative experience, it is not an inferior state, just a category of direct sensing. Regarding the cessations and space, I was simply using the Yogacara categories of the unconditioned dharmas as you can find them in Vasubandhu's Treatise on One Hundred Dharmas and Asanga's Abhidharmasamuccaya. Space here is not a metaphor for emptiness or the nature of mind, it is simply empty expanse in its ordinary sense. Also, among the different types of cessations, analysed cessation (pratisamkhya-nirodha) corresponds to the end of defilements as achieved via insight (vipasyana), and it is not the total end of all experience. The coma-like state you mentioned would be nirodha-samapatti (attainment of cessation, the 9th dhyana) or asamjni-samapatti (thoughtless attainment) and both are among the conditioned dharmas. Involuntary cessation of something is the unanalysed cessation (apratisamkhya-nirodha) and that covers cases like the involuntary loss of consciousness because of fainting or deep sleep, and other types of endings in causal continua.

I can't find where you resolve the apparent contradiction and explain where you find a 'middle way'


There is no contradiction. Buddha-nature has various definitions. In the above post I used it in the sense of the original nature of mind.
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T2076p461b24-26)
User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4248
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby undefineable » Fri Sep 13, 2013 3:56 pm

Astus wrote:Space here is not a metaphor for emptiness or the nature of mind, it is simply empty expanse in its ordinary sense.
Is this really meant to be taken literally as the dimensional, physical space between and within whatever physical atoms may make up the various world-systems (i.e. the multiverse of parallel universes)?! :rolleye:
Astus wrote:analysed cessation (pratisamkhya-nirodha) corresponds to the end of defilements as achieved via insight (vipasyana), and it is not the total end of all experience.
Clearly not - otherwise there'd be no analytically-based insight 8-)
Astus wrote:The coma-like state you mentioned would be nirodha-samapatti (attainment of cessation, the 9th dhyana) or asamjni-samapatti (thoughtless attainment) and both are among the conditioned dharmas.
I've heard of this as a stage that practitioners (though being comatose kinda makes that status more potential/'once and future' than actual, don't you think?) may go through once or twice, though is this really always necessary??
Astus wrote:Involuntary cessation of something is the unanalysed cessation (apratisamkhya-nirodha) and that covers cases like the involuntary loss of consciousness because of fainting or deep sleep, and other types of endings in causal continua.
So it's not generally relevant to the Path, then _
Astus wrote:There is no contradiction.
I get that. I just struggle to find where you explain how this is so, since most of your posts come across to me as nihilistic. To some, maybe they help more and sound less extreme.
Astus wrote:Buddha-nature has various definitions. In the above post I used it in the sense of the original nature of mind.
Which is distinct from nothing, I take it.
"Removing the barrier between this and that is the only solution" {Chogyam Trungpa - "The Lion's Roar"}
undefineable
 
Posts: 499
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 1:34 am

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby Astus » Fri Sep 13, 2013 4:11 pm

undefineable wrote:Is this really meant to be taken literally


"What is space (akasa)? It is the absence of matter (rupa), because the latter permits the manifestation of all kinds of activities." (Abhidharmasamuccaya 1.1.1, p 24)

is this really always necessary?


No. Not everything in Buddhism has to do specifically with the path, and not everything regarding the path is a necessary element. Buddhist teachings also talk about mistaken ideas and wrong goals.

Which is distinct from nothing, I take it.


As I said, there are various definitions, and many misunderstandings. For instance, saying that empty awareness is buddha-nature is easy to be mistaken for a soul, while calling it no mind or empty mind is easily misunderstood as unconsciousness. What both means, however, is that all mental phenomena are without essence, thus one can let them come and let them go, they self-liberate.
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T2076p461b24-26)
User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4248
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby undefineable » Fri Sep 13, 2013 4:36 pm

Astus wrote:
undefineable wrote:Is this really meant to be taken literally
"What is space (akasa)? It is the absence of matter (rupa), because the latter permits the manifestation of all kinds of activities." (Abhidharmasamuccaya 1.1.1, p 24)
Cool; it's good to be reminded that Buddhism doesn't just ignore the reality of the physical world.

In other contexts, I have seen the term 'space' used to convey mind-related concepts, though the untranslated source terms -or the senses in which the same terms were meant- would clearly be different.

Otherwise, thanks for an interesting discussion - The rest of your last post cleared up my remaining points of confusion! :cheers:
"Removing the barrier between this and that is the only solution" {Chogyam Trungpa - "The Lion's Roar"}
undefineable
 
Posts: 499
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 1:34 am

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby smcj » Fri Sep 13, 2013 4:45 pm

Therefore these are not experiences per se, but the lack of certain factors in experience. This corresponds to the usual explanation about buddha-nature that one only has to remove the adventitious stains in order to recover it.

This type of thinking is indicative of somebody that is self-taught from books. No accomplished meditator/lama I've ever met would agree with that. You are in effect saying that the actual experience of enlightenment is a fiction.
A human being has his limits. And thus, in every conceivable way, with every possible means, he tries to make the teaching enter into his own limits. ChNN
smcj
 
Posts: 2079
Joined: Wed May 29, 2013 6:13 am

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby Astus » Fri Sep 13, 2013 5:18 pm

smcj wrote:You are in effect saying that the actual experience of enlightenment is a fiction.


How so? I say one can really be free from ignorance, clinging and all the causes of suffering. Otherwise I'd deny the very meaning of the Buddha's teaching.
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T2076p461b24-26)
User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4248
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby smcj » Fri Sep 13, 2013 5:25 pm

Astus wrote:
smcj wrote:You are in effect saying that the actual experience of enlightenment is a fiction.


How so? I say one can really be free from ignorance, clinging and all the causes of suffering. Otherwise I'd deny the very meaning of the Buddha's teaching.

As unconditioned they are permanent. At least they would be permanent if any of them meant a specific experience, instead of the lack of experience or a theoretical generalisation that they actually signify. In the same category we could put for instance impermanence itself, and impermanence is permanent, just like emptiness and no self. But again, they are simply conceptual explanations and not experience.

Enlightenment is not a paradigm, attitude, or concept. It is an experience.
A human being has his limits. And thus, in every conceivable way, with every possible means, he tries to make the teaching enter into his own limits. ChNN
smcj
 
Posts: 2079
Joined: Wed May 29, 2013 6:13 am

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby oushi » Fri Sep 13, 2013 5:40 pm

Nothing wrote:
oushi wrote:All I know is that the only thing that does not change is not knowing.

Are you sure?.....as "not knowing" depends on something else.....who/what is it that not knows and what if it does not seek to know?.....then "not knowing" doesn't even exist at all.....so therefore, it can change, it cannot be permanent.....can it?

Sure I'm not sure. Actually, I made a nasty lie.
To be able to get ride of "not knowing" you would have to know something. But no matter how hard you try, you will not find even one thing that you know for sure. Everything hang on uncertainty. This is very easy to prove, by pointing out the paradox of knowing. We know causality, and interdependence of all things. Thus, to know something fully, you need to know everything. Since you cannot know everything, you cannot truly know even this one thing. This way, because we never knew anything, we don't even know what it means to know something. Not knowing, which I call mystery, creates and manifests everything. "I know!" is the source of all wars this world saw, all anger and hatred. But when love hits you, you have no idea what is happening to you, and you don't care to know.
In one thing all things manifests whithout you knowing them all. Everything, one by one, arises without relying on knowing. In one action, everything is involved without knowing. That which we call "knowing" in pure unknowing.
Say what you think about me here.
User avatar
oushi
 
Posts: 1596
Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2012 6:18 am

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby smcj » Fri Sep 13, 2013 5:52 pm

oushi wrote:
Nothing wrote:
oushi wrote:All I know is that the only thing that does not change is not knowing.

Are you sure?.....as "not knowing" depends on something else.....who/what is it that not knows and what if it does not seek to know?.....then "not knowing" doesn't even exist at all.....so therefore, it can change, it cannot be permanent.....can it?

Sure I'm not sure. Actually, I made a nasty lie.
To be able to get ride of "not knowing" you would have to know something. But no matter how hard you try, you will not find even one thing that you know for sure. Everything hang on uncertainty. This is very easy to prove, by pointing out the paradox of knowing. We know causality, and interdependence of all things. Thus, to know something fully, you need to know everything. Since you cannot know everything, you cannot truly know even this one thing. This way, because we never knew anything, we don't even know what it means to know something. Not knowing, which I call mystery, creates and manifests everything. "I know!" is the source of all wars this world saw, all anger and hatred. But when love hits you, you have no idea what is happening to you, and you don't care to know.
In one thing all things manifests whithout you knowing them all. Everything, one by one, arises without relying on knowing. In one action, everything is involved without knowing. That which we call "knowing" in pure unknowing.

You've just described samsara.
A human being has his limits. And thus, in every conceivable way, with every possible means, he tries to make the teaching enter into his own limits. ChNN
smcj
 
Posts: 2079
Joined: Wed May 29, 2013 6:13 am

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby Astus » Fri Sep 13, 2013 5:59 pm

smcj wrote:Enlightenment is not a paradigm, attitude, or concept. It is an experience.


Could you define that experience, describe it?
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T2076p461b24-26)
User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4248
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby oushi » Fri Sep 13, 2013 6:09 pm

smcj wrote:You've just described samsara.

I would have to know it to confirm, but I don't.
For most of my life I was certain of different things. Not anymore. And when I think about what does it mean to know something, I laugh. So, what does it mean?
Say what you think about me here.
User avatar
oushi
 
Posts: 1596
Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2012 6:18 am

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby smcj » Fri Sep 13, 2013 6:14 pm

Astus wrote:
smcj wrote:Enlightenment is not a paradigm, attitude, or concept. It is an experience.


Could you define that experience, describe it?

The experience of your own Buddha Nature after the adventitious defilements are removed. Retroactively it is then seen as having always been present, therefore permanent.
A human being has his limits. And thus, in every conceivable way, with every possible means, he tries to make the teaching enter into his own limits. ChNN
smcj
 
Posts: 2079
Joined: Wed May 29, 2013 6:13 am

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby smcj » Fri Sep 13, 2013 6:18 pm

oushi wrote:
smcj wrote:You've just described samsara.

I would have to know it to confirm, but I don't.
For most of my life I was certain of different things. Not anymore. And when I think about what does it mean to know something, I laugh. So, what does it mean?

That you have begun to become aware of your own unawareness. That is a huge accomplishment. The unawareness of most people is such that they have no idea they are unaware.
A human being has his limits. And thus, in every conceivable way, with every possible means, he tries to make the teaching enter into his own limits. ChNN
smcj
 
Posts: 2079
Joined: Wed May 29, 2013 6:13 am

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby undefineable » Fri Sep 13, 2013 6:27 pm

@Oushi: It sounds like you're again talking in an unconventional way about the difference between second-hand conceptual knowledge, which divides subject from object, and the first-hand experience of the extension of being, which tends to unite them. Love may be 'blind' to superficial qualities, but it brings into focus what is central and intangible (though not essential of course ;) ) before attachment creeps in.

Maybe: It's knowledge, oushi, but not as we know it :P
"Removing the barrier between this and that is the only solution" {Chogyam Trungpa - "The Lion's Roar"}
undefineable
 
Posts: 499
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 1:34 am

Re: Not Everything is Impermanent

Postby oushi » Fri Sep 13, 2013 7:03 pm

undefineable wrote:@Oushi: It sounds like you're again talking in an unconventional way about the difference between second-hand conceptual knowledge, which divides subject from object, and the first-hand experience of the extension of being, which tends to unite them. Love may be 'blind' to superficial qualities, but it brings into focus what is central and intangible (though not essential of course ;) ) before attachment creeps in.

Maybe: It's knowledge, oushi, but not as we know it :P

Mind that does not look for knowing is lovely. The real knowing must always be here, no point in looking for it, even if we cannot conceptualize it. Thay say that Tathagata is inconceivable anyway.

ps. Let me be honest here, I have no idea what "being" is, how could I know what extension of it means?
smcj wrote:
oushi wrote:
smcj wrote:You've just described samsara.

I would have to know it to confirm, but I don't.
For most of my life I was certain of different things. Not anymore. And when I think about what does it mean to know something, I laugh. So, what does it mean?

That you have begun to become aware of your own unawareness. That is a huge accomplishment. The unawareness of most people is such that they have no idea they are unaware.

You seem to treat permanence very materialistically. You miss the fact that if something is permanent it cannot come and go, because it would be completelly impermanent on the level of experience. There is no ethernal pearl to be found somewhere underneath the ocean... That which is permament must be present in every experierce.
Last edited by oushi on Fri Sep 13, 2013 7:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Say what you think about me here.
User avatar
oushi
 
Posts: 1596
Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2012 6:18 am

PreviousNext

Return to Lounge

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 13 guests

>