Misunderstanding emptiness

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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby cloudburst » Sat Jan 21, 2012 3:24 am

conebeckham wrote:Some may say it's merely semantic...but I don't think Nagarjuna or Chandrakirti explicitly make a distinction between your two "existences," ultimate and mere.


Surely they do. Often it is implicit, but it is also made explicit in many places as well.

conebeckham wrote:As I understand things, at the level of no analysis, things appear.


truly.

conebeckham wrote:the minute we begin analysis, though, existence, in any form, goes out the window.

This is one way of saying it, although in order for this point of view to square, we need to understand that "existence, in any form" means existence as defined as something that is more than just mere appearance to mind. Because the older schools do not differentiate between existence and existence by nature, then they say "nothing exists in any way." Buddha says it on occasion, as do Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti.

There is another way to present it, in which existence is defined as that which is known by mind, and so we can say that things DO exist, just not by essence.
They are mere appearances, and these lack any nature of their own. You can also find many quotations from the founders that support this interpretation. Sometimes they qualify, sometimes not, but when you carefully analyze the context, the fact is that it is existence characterized by some essence that is refuted.

When we do it this way, we achieve an unusual clarity of explanatory power. For example, we can see so clearly that Madhyamikas have no view in a specialized way, in other words, they have no view involving essential existence, and this makes sense of the constant assertions they make, as well as their repeated championing of views, etc.


conebeckham wrote: "Appearance of things" does not, however, and to deny that it does, is to ignore the convention of ordinary people, which Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti explicitly do NOT do.


agree


conebeckham wrote:What you're saying, with regard to an "emptiness which does exist," is that this "emptiness" is a relative truth, or, in your words, a "mere existence."


not at all. Emptiness is ultimate truth, not relative. Just becasue something exists does not mean it is relative, otherwise ultimate truth would not exist. if that were the case, as Chandrakirti says, what would be the point of Bodhisattva's practicing the path and enduring countless hardships?

conebeckham wrote:This leads to the "generic image" of emptiness which the Gelukpas claim is a necessary aspect of the path--I think? But when Nagarjuna and Chandra talk about "appearance," and that which conventionally is agreed upon by ordinary people, I don't think they would include this "generic image" of emptiness, which is a conceptual construct--I don't think this "emptiness" appears to ordinary people.


conventional truth doesn't mean simply what appears to ordinary people, it means what appears to conventionally valid minds. Otherwise, all kinds of things would be conventional truths just becasue ordinary people agree.

conebeckham wrote:It's this "generic image" which I don't think you'll find anywhere in Indian Madhyamika. If the aim of Madhyamika is to exahust conceptualization, what use to create a "generic image," which is a conceptualization, and which is far removed from the experience of ordinary persons? It would seem to be more conceptual proliferation, and not less.....?


The problem here is..... you cannot realize emptiness directly at this point, otherwise you would simply become an arya, you can only do so with a conceptual mind. If you abandon that inferential cognizer, and you are not knowing emptiness directly, what is the relationship between your mind and emptiness?

So although it is not direct, an inferential or conceptual mind must be used initially to realize emptiness.

conebeckham wrote:Thanks for the discussion! :anjali:


a genuine pleasure, let's keep it going.
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby cloudburst » Sat Jan 21, 2012 3:47 am

Namdrol wrote:You see, in chapter 15 of MMK Nagaruna asks, where is there an existent not included in svabhāva (inherent existence) or parabhāva (dependent existence defined as a stealth version of svabhāva in the previous verse)?


It is clear from context that here in the chapter on "Essence" he is talking about existence by way of essence.

Namdrol wrote:He then goes on to say that if existents are not established, then non-existents are not established, since a non-existent is normally defined by people as something which existed before, does not exist now.


yes, we well elucidated in our previous discussion (linked to in my post earlier in this thread) that existence and non-existence are used in a specialized sense, pertaining to something existing in reality, as you put it. This adds further context so that we are clear, what Nagarjuna is talking about here is essential existence, it must either be svabhava or parabhava, and as you correctly point out, parabhava is actually just a form of svabhava.

Namdrol wrote: Having set this out, he then says, whoever has a view involving existents, non-existents, inherent existents or dependent existents does not understand Buddha's view.


yes, you established for us that having a view of these things relates to reality, or ultimate truth. Conventionally all madhyamikas have views about existence etc, and they expound upon them at length.

Namdrol wrote:He then cites the Reply to Katyayana, the only sutra cited in the whole of the MML i.e. "The world is bound by a duality, "It is" and "It is not".


This makes sense, as seeing the lack of real existence will free us from views of "is" (quotes indicate a view pertaining to reality, as per Namdrol), and we can abide with our conventional views, which Madhyamika do not refute.

Namdrol wrote:Right, but the point is that Nag. equates existence (bhāva) with svabhāva (essence in this translation). In other words, Nag. is asserting that bhāva is svabhāva by necessity.


In context, as explained above, we can see that since what Nagarjuna is talking about here is essential existence, it must either be svabhava or parabhava, and as you correctly point out, parabhava is actually just a form of svabhava.

thanks!
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby Malcolm » Sat Jan 21, 2012 1:42 pm

cloudburst wrote:
In context, as explained above, we can see that since what Nagarjuna is talking about here is essential existence, it must either be svabhava or parabhava, and as you correctly point out, parabhava is actually just a form of svabhava.

thanks!


For Nag. that is the only kind of existence there could be i.e. bhāva = svābhava.
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby cloudburst » Sat Jan 21, 2012 3:06 pm

Namdrol wrote:
cloudburst wrote:
In context, as explained above, we can see that since what Nagarjuna is talking about here is essential existence, it must either be svabhava or parabhava, and as you correctly point out, parabhava is actually just a form of svabhava.

thanks!


For Nag. that is the only kind of existence there could be i.e. bhāva = svābhava.


It would seem then that his principal disciples failed to understand him as they repeatedly refer to things existing conventionally, as did Buddha, upon whose explanations Nagarjuna's work is based.

I know precisely what you are trying to say. You are just having a awful, self-contradictory time doing it.

If svabhava, exhaustively refuted by Nagarjuna, were the only way in which things could exist, nothing would exist in any way.
You want to accept the consequence and say that this is true, nothing exists in any way.

But you cannot also give an explanation of the difference between something not existing in any way, and utter non-existence, because there is no difference.
You do not want to accept utter non-existence as that would make you a nihilist, so you must give an explanation of the difference mentioned above.

In attempting to so so, you will make many terse unsupported claims, and then, when pressed, you will engage in some laborious explanation designed entirely to avoid saying "things do exit conventionally," but this will be the meaning of your explanation.

Why not just say that things exist, or are produced, as illusions, and that is the way they exist, although they have no self-nature? It will save you a great deal of typing, others will understand the dharma and develop confidence, and you will come to the same point. Then you can rest.
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby Malcolm » Sat Jan 21, 2012 3:12 pm

cloudburst wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
cloudburst wrote:
In context, as explained above, we can see that since what Nagarjuna is talking about here is essential existence, it must either be svabhava or parabhava, and as you correctly point out, parabhava is actually just a form of svabhava.

thanks!


For Nag. that is the only kind of existence there could be i.e. bhāva = svābhava.


It would seem then that his principal disciples failed to understand him as they repeatedly refer to things existing conventionally, as did Buddha, upon whose explanations Nagarjuna's work is based.

I know precisely what you are trying to say. You are just having a awful, self-contradictory time doing it.

If svabhava, exhaustively refuted by Nagarjuna, were the only way in which things could exist, nothing would exist in any way.


As Buddhapalita states:

"It is not that we assert non-existence, we merely remove claims for existing existents".

Your concern is to maintain people's conventional sense of reality.

The Madhyamaka concern is to remove people's false conceptions.

See my post over in the Gorampa thread. All of this discussion is just chasing illusions and being wrapped in accepting and rejecting.
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Sat Jan 21, 2012 4:29 pm

cloudburst wrote:Why not just say that things exist, or are produced, as illusions, and that is the way they exist, although they have no self-nature? It will save you a great deal of typing, others will understand the dharma and develop confidence, and you will come to the same point.


The problem is in the word "exist".
this is an ambiguous term, and the argument is over what the term refers to.

On the one hand, we can say if something occurs, the way an appearance occurs (or appears to occur, or appears to appear to occur, or appears to appear to appear to occur...infinitely) then in that sense it is exists.
This, I think, is what cloudburst is saying.

On the other hand, since appearances occur in ways that are limited to the characteristics of their appearance, and it cannot be shown that those limits actually function, then we cannot say that in that way appearances exist.

So, "exist" is really a misleading and troublesome word.
I posted this before, but I think what it boils down to is
an appearance is of something finite in an otherwise infinite reality.

To me, this solves the whole problem.
Because we can say a table exists and what we mean is that it has...no, it IS the appearance of something finite.

At the same time, there is nothing finite which can be called a table. So, the table has no true 'existence".

In other words, "finite" means "truly existent" or "self-arising" or "non causal" because "finite" describes a point at which things cannot go any further--cannot be divided, are not dependent on a secondary context for is becoming.

So, rather than discussing whether something is existent, it is perhaps more accurate to state whether something is finite.
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby asunthatneversets » Sat Jan 21, 2012 10:09 pm

yadave wrote:
Nonduality is a term made popular by new-age writers. ;)


Simply untrue.

All that arises
is essentially no more real
than a reflection,
transparently pure and clear,
beyond all definition
or logical explanation.
Yet the seeds of past action,
karma, continue to cause further arising
Even so-
know all that exists
is ultimately void of self-nature,
utterly non-dual!

- The Buddha


yadave wrote:You talk the talk, Sunshine, but consider my dilemma. All I have left is a little prajna. Oh, and cooties. That's it, prajna and cooties.

Magazines like Time and Newsweek periodically run an article on meditation subjects. I recall one where a scientist told the story of waiting for a train one day when his perception of "outside" suddenly collapsed and he felt no separation between himself and the world he gazed upon. The experience passed but he was blown away and it left him with an enormous curiosity about what had happened in his mind. He did not burst out exclaiming "trains don't really exist!"


Of course he didn't, you think he'd be taken seriously by his piers? Credibility is king in institutionalized scientific circles. And even at that, just because he had a taste of an altered state of consciousness doesn't mean he had any background to understand the implications of such an experience. There's no doubt experiences like that are compelling enough to cause thorough investigation by anyone who has one. It all has to do with ones views and the paradigm they are raised to believe in. If that scientist had been living in India, Nepal, Bhutan, Tibet, Japan or any other south asian country 7 times out of 10 he would've most likely understood what that experience was.

His perception of "outside" collapsed because there is no inherent external reality. It certainly appears that way and it's useful that it does to navigate and function but in truth it is not so. I rarely use science to back up what i say but even modern science claims that all we experience is a representation in our brains and that there's no absolute way to ever know if there's an external world. And that's just modern science. That isn't even a correct view in my opinion.

yadave wrote:I think we all have the capacity for these realizations, our interpretations may still differ, like they do for the texts we study.


Undoubtably, it's an innate part of being whatever it is that we are. People across all cultures, across all of time have had these "religious experiences" and they're interpreted in a myriad of ways according to the culture and time you read about them from. And some are sophisticated and accurate understandings with cultures which are based on such an experience, and some are unsophisticated translations of that experience like claiming to be the son of god.

yadave wrote:At the end of the day, suffering is not caused by clinging to a tree, tree hugging is probably soothing, suffering is caused by clinging to a self and the Buddhist technology for dismantling that self is excellent, I have only thumbs up for emptiness of internal phenomena, my main concern here has been the projection of this onto emptiness of external phenoma, of language, and other ancillary things.

People, hummingbirds, and snails must all "go around the tree" to get to the other side. Words and perceptions may differ, but the "tree" is real in this sense and no personal hubris of mine causes this to be so.


Internal/external phenomena is a projection of your so-called "internal" phenomena called conceptualization. Your main concern about this being "projected" as emptiness of external phenomena is impossible being that external phenomena is a projection itself. Aside from conventionality; people, hummingbirds, snails and tree lack inherent being. You're right it isn't due to any personal hubris of yours, but clinging to concepts and attachment to habitual patterns which reify that view certainly make it seem like there appears to be a person who does so. And in contrast makes it appear that there's a person who claims he or she doesn't do so due to any personal hubris of theirs.

I agree with namdrol that the apparent solidity of phenomena is directly related to the solidity of one's delusion. The more solid one's delusion is, the more solid apparent phenomena seem.

Pick out an object if you want yadave and let's break it down. I'd like for you to semi-grasp what i'm talking about so I'm not just throwing horsesh*t out on a message board without backing up my statements.

"Just as the Buddhas have spoken of
"I" and "mine" for a practical purpose;
Likewise they spoke too of "aggregates",
"Elements" and "sense-fields" for a practical reasons.

Such things spoken of as the "great elements",
These are fully absorbed into consciousness;
Since they are dissolved by understanding them,
Are they not falsely imputed?"

- Nagarjuna: excerpt from his 60 Stanzas

-------------------------

"In the universal womb that is boundless space
all forms of matter and energy occur as a flux of the four elements,
but all are empty forms, absent in reality;
all phenomena, arising in pure mind, are like that.

Magical illusion, whatever it's shape,
lacks substance, empty in nature;
likewise, all experience of the world, arisen in the moment,
unstirring from pure mind, is insubstantial evanescence.

Just as a dream is a part of sleep,
unreal gossamer in it's arising,
so all and everything is pure mind,
never separated from it,
and without substance or attribute.

....Just as the objective field is absent in reality,
so 'the knower' - in actuality pure mind,
in essence and absence, is like the clear sky:
know it in it's ineffable reality!

....In total presence, the nature of mind that is like the sky,
where there is no duality, no distinction, no gradation,
there is no view nor meditation nor commitment to observe,
no diligent ideal conduct, no pristine awareness to unveil,
no training in the stages and no path to tread,
no subtle level of realization, and no final union.

...... Constantly deconstructing, investigating keenly,
not even the slightest substance can be found;
and in the undivided moment of nondual perception
we abide in the natural state of perfection.

Absent when scrutinized, absent when ignored,
not even an iota of solid matter is attested;
so all aspects of experience are always absent -
know it as nothing but magical illusion!"

-Longchenpa: excerpts from The Treasury Of Natural Perfection


[/quote]
yadave wrote:Now you are reifying and rationalizing and comparing yourself to others. Right on.

Regards,
Dave.


Yes but it's understood that it's merely a product of conventional language implemented as a tool in the context of this conversation for the purpose of communication, and there's nothing wrong with that. I enjoy discussions like these.

I'm only saying I don't blame you for questioning the emptiness of external phenomena. So if you want to pick out an object and start there i'm down to discuss. Maybe starting with clouds would be good since there's minimal colors involved and a large area.
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby yadave » Sat Jan 21, 2012 10:46 pm

cloudburst wrote:
conebeckham wrote:Some may say it's merely semantic...but I don't think Nagarjuna or Chandrakirti explicitly make a distinction between your two "existences," ultimate and mere.

Surely they do. Often it is implicit, but it is also made explicit in many places as well.

Like MMK 24.8,

Nagarjuna wrote:The Buddha's teaching of the Dharma
Is based on two truths:
A truth of worldly convention
And an ultimate truth.

Thanks for the "Sunyata and Dependent Origination" reference, cloudburst, I enjoy your clear presentation of these issues and see that my concerns are echoed here and in other forums.

I have been looking for a consistent story and would like to better understand what happened in the other thread wrt this.

Namdrol wrote:
cloudburst wrote:If there is no necessary reason to avoid self-contradiction, anything can be claimed, and there can be no valid reason adduced to show that it is incorrect, as these reasons [within] conventional discourse depend on the law of non-contradiction, or excluded middle. You lose the liberating path.

"Is and is not" are not my positions. They are the positions of others {Samkhya, etc.]. Therefore, the fault of self-contradiction is not entailed. Either you accept the dualistic position of others and defend them, or you accept that asti and nasti are wrong views described by the Buddha as such.

Here it appears Namdrol would be inconsistent if his statements expressed a view or constituted a position. Since his statements are instead a game (i.e., "Blame the game, not the player"), he cannot be accused of inconsistency, he is only playing a game?

Then you two discuss views, there are two kinds of views, conventional wrong "views" and ultimate right views? No no no. Let me retry.

We can say anything in conventional discourse, even contradictory things, without being contradictory, as long as we neither agree nor disagree with what we say (i.e., no view, no position).

Is this right?

Regards,
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby cloudburst » Sat Jan 21, 2012 10:58 pm

Namdrol wrote:
As Buddhapalita states:

"It is not that we assert non-existence, we merely remove claims for existing existents".


Wonderful.
Buddhapalita also often distinguishes between inherent existence and mere existence.
We can understand Buddhapalita's statement above to mean that thing are NOT non-existent, there is a just type of existent that we refute, and that is "existing existents." These are things that are said to exist by nature, and there is no such thing.

If there were no such thing as something that exists in any way at all, this would be indistinguishable from utter non-existence, as stated in my previous post

Namdrol wrote:Your concern is to maintain people's conventional sense of reality.
The Madhyamaka concern is to remove people's false conceptions.


Astute.
I share the concern of all Madhyamikas. False conceptions out, valid conventions in.


Namdrol wrote:See my post over in the Gorampa thread. All of this discussion is just chasing illusions and being wrapped in accepting and rejecting.


Your post there, while heartfelt, is disappointing.


Namdrol wrote:The suffering of chasing mirages never ends. The only way to end it is simply to stop.
likewise, the suffering of intellectual pursuits never ends. The only way to end it is simply to stop.
The suffering of accepting and rejecting never ends.The only way to end it is simply to stop.
likewise, the suffering of proof and rebuttal never ends. The only way to end it is simply to stop.


You urge upon us a cessation, but you yourself cannot stop.

Intellectual pursuits as you well know, may well be a part of the path.
Accepting and rejecting can be accomplished without the slightest trace of attachment to views, of the benefit of all. Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti themselves often wrote "we accept this" and "We reject that"
Proof and rebuttal may or may not be a suffering, depending on your consciousness.

If you want these sufferings to end, YOU stop.
If you disappear from this debate, after a few months I will see you meant it and be inspired, and your words will have had a beneficial effect.
Until then, they are just a wind blowing through an empty valley, to quote Loncgchenpa.

In the meantime, since we both know you cannot take your own advice, please feel free to continue debating!

thanks!
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby Mr. G » Sat Jan 21, 2012 11:57 pm

Why are you goading him cloud? Grow up.
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby yadave » Sun Jan 22, 2012 12:31 am

asunthatneversets wrote:
yadave wrote:Nonduality is a term made popular by new-age writers. ;)

Simply untrue.

It is partially untrue, hence the smiley, so it is partially (or largely) true.

asunthatneversets wrote:Of course [the scientist whose inside/outside collapsed] didn't [burst out exclaiming "trains don't really exist!"], you think he'd be taken seriously by his piers? Credibility is king in institutionalized scientific circles. And even at that, just because he had a taste of an altered state of consciousness doesn't mean he had any background to understand the implications of such an experience. There's no doubt experiences like that are compelling enough to cause thorough investigation by anyone who has one. It all has to do with ones views and the paradigm they are raised to believe in. If that scientist had been living in India, Nepal, Bhutan, Tibet, Japan or any other south asian country 7 times out of 10 he would've most likely understood what that experience was.

You don't seem to notice that your view depends on the paradigm you happen to believe in. You have faith. You are "right."

asunthatneversets wrote:Undoubtably, [peak experiences are] an innate part of being whatever it is that we are. People across all cultures, across all of time have had these "religious experiences" and they're interpreted in a myriad of ways according to the culture and time you read about them from. And some are sophisticated and accurate understandings with cultures which are based on such an experience, and some are unsophisticated translations of that experience like claiming to be the son of god.

You don't seem to notice that your view depends on the paradigm you happen to believe in. You have faith. You are "right."

asunthatneversets wrote:Internal/external phenomena is a projection of your so-called "internal" phenomena called conceptualization.

That's a neat concept, Sunshine.

asunthatneversets wrote:Aside from conventionality; people, hummingbirds, snails and tree lack inherent being.

Now you're talking metaphysics. I was talking about the tree you can't walk through.

asunthatneversets wrote:Pick out an object if you want yadave and let's break it down. I'd like for you to semi-grasp what i'm talking about so I'm not just throwing horsesh*t out on a message board without backing up my statements.

Horsesh*t is fine, Sunshine. I made this a conventional topic some posts back so go for it.

Namdrol and I already analyzed the horsesh*t out of salt, so you may want to use this. Namdrol said I'm not allowed to stop searching at the salt molecule, even though its parts are not salty. I argued that his goal, some "eternal independent essence," was an archaic metaphysical strawman.

So our analysis will probably return to what cloudburst is expressing, we will probably argue about what "existence" means, and this will probably be due to there being at least four contexts going on here. It is almost too much fun to fathom. ;)

Regards,
Dave.
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby yadave » Sun Jan 22, 2012 12:36 am

Mr. G wrote:Why are you goading him cloud? Grow up.

You're right. Cloudburst seems upset.

Cloudburst, you cannot just express yourself eloquently and then get upset and leave. This would violate TOS and may be grounds for dismissal.

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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby Mr. G » Sun Jan 22, 2012 12:44 am

yadave wrote:
Cloudburst, you cannot just express yourself eloquently and then get upset and leave. This would violate TOS and may be grounds for dismissal.


It's not so much a TOS violation as it is crass to intentionally provoke someone.
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby yadave » Sun Jan 22, 2012 1:01 am

Mr. G wrote:
yadave wrote:Cloudburst, you cannot just express yourself eloquently and then get upset and leave. This would violate TOS and may be grounds for dismissal.

It's not so much a TOS violation as it is crass to intentionally provoke someone.

I'm trying to lighten things up with humor, Mr. G, as in the impossible situation of dismissing someone who has already left. ;)

As for who provokes whom, an evasive "opponent" can be provocative as well, in a passive aggressive sense, fwiw.

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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby asunthatneversets » Sun Jan 22, 2012 1:35 am

yadave wrote:It is partially untrue, hence the smiley, so it is partially (or largely) true.


So how is it partially true or untrue? In your opinion I mean.

yadave wrote:You don't seem to notice that your view depends on the paradigm you happen to believe in.  You have faith.  You are "right."

What do I believe in? I've been referencing that view depends on ones reigning paradigm from the beginning of this thread. Other than initial faith to investigate no faith is required in what I'm suggesting. No ones right or wrong, but there is correct and incorrect view in terms of vidya and avidya. I do realize my view reflects the view I'm attempting to convey, I wouldn't be so bold to suggest I'm not subject to the same stipulations I'm bringing attention to in others cases. We are not different. 

yadave wrote:You don't seem to notice that your view depends on the paradigm you happen to believe in.  You have faith.  You are "right."

I do notice. 

yadave wrote:That's a neat concept, Sunshine.
 
Yes how ironic we have to use concepts to communicate. My point is that experience itself doesn't suggest such designations. Experience doesn't communicate anything. Only ideas of experience do. So my inquiry would be based on discovering if apart from our ideas we carry about experience, does experience actually resemble our conditioned views? And it's interesting that it in fact doesn't. Our conditioned views don't hold up to earnest investigation in an empirical sense. And experience turns out to have a degree of plasticity of sorts, in that it will reflect how it is viewed and can appear in many ways depending on the varying points of view the one apparent "point" holds.

yadave wrote:Now you're talking metaphysics.  I was talking about the tree you can't walk through.

"Metaphysical" as in what is fundamental to physicality? Or "metaphysical" as in a sarcastic term to label notions which contrast ones accepted paradigm? If that's me talking metaphysics then this whole thread is metaphysic in nature. I haven't deviated from the emptiness of phenomena topic at all, what I'm saying just sounds absurd because its counterintuitive to ones point of view which has been subconsciously solidified through constant reification. 

yadave wrote:Horsesh*t is fine, Sunshine.  I made this a conventional topic some posts back so go for it.

Namdrol and I already analyzed the horsesh*t out of salt, so you may want to use this.  Namdrol said I'm not allowed to stop searching at the salt molecule, even though its parts are not salty.  I argued that his goal, some "eternal independent essence," was an archaic metaphysical strawman.
 
Constituent parts such as molecules aren't my concern, unless you're as small as a molecule, molecules aren't an obvious part of experience. I'm more concerned with direct experience of salt in it's form readily  apparent to the senses. 

yadave wrote:So our analysis will probably return to what cloudburst is expressing, we will probably argue about what "existence" means, and this will probably be due to there being at least four contexts going on here.  It is almost too much fun to fathom.  ;)

Regards,
Dave.

What existence means wouldn't be my concern either. Empirical investigation into what the nature of experience is, is all my analysis would encompass. 
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby Mr. G » Sun Jan 22, 2012 2:09 am

yadave wrote:
As for who provokes whom, an evasive "opponent" can be provocative as well, in a passive aggressive sense, fwiw.


Someone who chooses to leave a discussion is passive aggressive? You're reaching quite a bit here.
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby Malcolm » Sun Jan 22, 2012 2:20 am

cloudburst wrote:
In the meantime, since we both know you cannot take your own advice, please feel free to continue debating!



I have very little interest in debate, since debate generally consists of dancing on books.

However, please do not confuse my sincere answers to questions as debate, since that is not my intent. My days of debating this point and that point are finished.
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby yadave » Sun Jan 22, 2012 2:42 am

Mr. G wrote:
yadave wrote:Cloudburst, you cannot just express yourself eloquently and then get upset and leave. This would violate TOS and may be grounds for dismissal.

It's not so much a TOS violation as it is crass to intentionally provoke someone.
yadave wrote:I'm trying to lighten things up with humor, Mr. G, as in the impossible situation of dismissing someone who has already left. ;)

As for who provokes whom, an evasive "opponent" can be provocative as well, in a passive aggressive sense, fwiw.

Someone who chooses to leave a discussion is passive aggressive? You're reaching quite a bit here.

I'm gonna let readers decide what just happened. Play on, player?

Regards,
Dave.
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby yadave » Sun Jan 22, 2012 2:52 am

asunthatneversets wrote:What existence means wouldn't be my concern either. Empirical investigation into what the nature of experience is, is all my analysis would encompass.

I like your attitude and am ready to die but our investigation may be limited by what we can think and type (i.e., domain of inquiry = phenomenology).

asunthatneversets wrote:Constituent parts such as molecules aren't my concern, unless you're as small as a molecule, molecules aren't an obvious part of experience.

But medicine, farming, and many other obvious experiences are, and these depend on our knowledge of molecules which was not discovered in meditation.

asunthatneversets wrote:I'm more concerned with direct experience of salt in it's form readily apparent to the senses.

OK. Salt tastes salty. I am ready.

Regards,
Dave.
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Re: Misunderstanding emptiness

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Sun Jan 22, 2012 2:56 am

yadave wrote:unless you're as small as a molecule, molecules aren't an obvious part of experience.


According to the view that thoughts are created by the brain, "YOU" are as small as a molecule!
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