Ground of Being

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Re: Ground of Being

Postby gad rgyangs » Thu Feb 23, 2012 4:25 am

from the abhidharmakosa bhasyam (Pruden Vol 2 pg 119):
What is avidyā?
The non-vidyā, that which is not vidyā.
Impossible; for the eye is also non-vidyā.
It is an absence of vidyā, "ignorance."
This is also impossible, for an absence is not a thing (dravya) and avidyā must be a thing. since it is a cause (pratyaya). Thus

28c-d. Avidyā is a separate entity (dharma), the opposite of vidyā or knowledge, like a non-friend, the untrue, etc.

The non-friend (amitra) is the opposite of a friend, not a non-friend, that is, anyone other than a friend, not the absence of a friend. Ṛta or satya is truth; non-truth (anṛta) is speech contrary to true speech; so too non-righteousness (adharma), non-useful (anartha) and the not-to-be-done (akārya) are the opposite of rghteousness, useful, and duty.

Thus avidyā - "non-knowledge" - is the opposite of vidyā, a real separate dharma. The Sūtra defines it as the cause of the saṁskāras, from whence it results that it is not a mere negation.
Thoroughly tame your own mind.
This is (possibly) the teaching of Buddha.
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby Sherab » Thu Feb 23, 2012 5:03 am

gad rgyangs wrote:from the abhidharmakosa bhasyam (Pruden Vol 2 pg 119):
What is avidyā?
The non-vidyā, that which is not vidyā.
Impossible; for the eye is also non-vidyā.
It is an absence of vidyā, "ignorance."
This is also impossible, for an absence is not a thing (dravya) and avidyā must be a thing. since it is a cause (pratyaya). Thus

28c-d. Avidyā is a separate entity (dharma), the opposite of vidyā or knowledge, like a non-friend, the untrue, etc.

The non-friend (amitra) is the opposite of a friend, not a non-friend, that is, anyone other than a friend, not the absence of a friend. Ṛta or satya is truth; non-truth (anṛta) is speech contrary to true speech; so too non-righteousness (adharma), non-useful (anartha) and the not-to-be-done (akārya) are the opposite of rghteousness, useful, and duty.

Thus avidyā - "non-knowledge" - is the opposite of vidyā, a real separate dharma. The Sūtra defines it as the cause of the saṁskāras, from whence it results that it is not a mere negation.

You can agree with the abhidharmakosa bhasyam, but I don't, not in this instance. To me, it is like saying that darkness, a mere absence of light, is a phenomenon in its own right, independent of the phenomenon of light. Like I said earlier, we are not likely to agree with each other on this.
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby gad rgyangs » Thu Feb 23, 2012 5:03 am

asunthatneversets wrote:The basis is a convention isn't it?


the word "basis" is a convention, the basis is not.


It's only the basis from the perspective of non-recognition, because the "basis" is in fact is self-originated wisdom(emptiness). It's not as if there's some inherently existing ground or source called the basis.


one of the many names for that-which-is-beyond-all-partial-characterizations is "self-originated wisdom" (rang byung ye shes), and while its nature is pure/empty, it is also spontaneously manifesting and dynamically responsive (not "just" empty, and certainly not the reification "empti-ness"). The ontological status of the basis is usually described as "beyond existence and non-existence" or "not existent, and not non-existent". i think my favorite is "it does not exist as anything at all, yet it can arise/appear/manifest as anything at all."

If you can experience a sense of astonishment that there is clearly apparent manifesting going on rather than nothing, and then turn towards that in you which enables you to experience this, that is pointing to the basis.
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby asunthatneversets » Thu Feb 23, 2012 5:25 am

gad rgyangs wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote:The basis is a convention isn't it?


the word "basis" is a convention, the basis is not.


It's only the basis from the perspective of non-recognition, because the "basis" is in fact is self-originated wisdom(emptiness). It's not as if there's some inherently existing ground or source called the basis.


one of the many names for that-which-is-beyond-all-partial-characterizations is "self-originated wisdom" (rang byung ye shes), and while its nature is pure/empty, it is also spontaneously manifesting and dynamically responsive (not "just" empty, and certainly not the reification "empti-ness"). The ontological status of the basis is usually described as "beyond existence and non-existence" or "not existent, and not non-existent". i think my favorite is "it does not exist as anything at all, yet it can arise/appear/manifest as anything at all."

If you can experience a sense of astonishment that there is clearly apparent manifesting going on rather than nothing, and then turn towards that in you which enables you to experience this, that is pointing to the basis.


Word. I actually didn't realize that is what was being spoken of when the term basis was being used. So how does the basis differ from the nature of mind? Or are they synonymous? Because the description certainly seems the same. I'm not even sure if "that in you which enables you to experience" can be considered accurate but I suppose it can on a basic level.
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby Sönam » Thu Feb 23, 2012 9:11 am

gad rgyangs wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote:The basis is a convention isn't it?


the word "basis" is a convention, the basis is not.



It is not if you don't recognize the basis. For an unlightened being, the base does not exist, it's a convention ... you still mix-up gZhi with Kun-gZhi, that's why, it's one reason why Namdrol said before "it is not appropriate to argue and debate about Dzogchen."

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By understanding that any and all mental activity is meditation, you are freed from arbitrary divisions between formal sessions and postmeditation activity.
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby Malcolm » Thu Feb 23, 2012 11:32 am

asunthatneversets wrote:
gad rgyangs wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote:The basis is a convention isn't it?


the word "basis" is a convention, the basis is not.


The basis is merely a convention.
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby gad rgyangs » Thu Feb 23, 2012 1:46 pm

Namdrol wrote:
The basis is merely a convention.


in what sense, surely not in a madhyamaka sense.
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby Malcolm » Thu Feb 23, 2012 2:04 pm

gad rgyangs wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
The basis is merely a convention.


in what sense, surely not in a madhyamaka sense.


There basis is not real. Ergo it is merely a convention. If someone should think the basis was real, they would be missing the point of ka dag. The basis is baseless, it is not established in anyway at all.

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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

Though there are infinite liberating gateways of Dharma,
there are none not included in the dimension of the knowledge of the Great Perfection.

-- Buddha Samantabhadri
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby gad rgyangs » Thu Feb 23, 2012 2:16 pm

Namdrol wrote:
There basis is not real. Ergo it is merely a convention. If someone should think the basis was real, they would be missing the point of ka dag. The basis is baseless, it is not established in anyway at all.

N


its not real, but its also not unreal. If by "convention" you mean that all our descriptions and conceptions of it are partial and limited, then ok. But since, in a practical sense, it is "our real nature" (ChNNR) Im not sure how calling it a convention elucidates anything. Im also not sure which term from the Dzogchen corpus you are translating as "convention"?
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby Malcolm » Thu Feb 23, 2012 2:32 pm

gad rgyangs wrote: Im also not sure which term from the Dzogchen corpus you are translating as "convention"?


tha snyad, vyavahara.

This is why, as the rigpa rang shar states, though in Dzogchen there is actually no basis, path and result, nevertheless, we talk about a basis, path and result. Ergo, the basis and the rest are merely conventional, quite in line with Haribhadra's proclamation that the entire path, including buddhahood, is totally illusory.

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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

Though there are infinite liberating gateways of Dharma,
there are none not included in the dimension of the knowledge of the Great Perfection.

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Re: Ground of Being

Postby gad rgyangs » Thu Feb 23, 2012 6:19 pm

getting back to the question of ignorance being an appearance of the basis or not, here's Dudjom R. in the BiG rEd BoOk (pg54):
The doctrines or phenomena of samsara are originally caused by ignorance which arises in three interrelated aspects. Firstly, the ignorance of individual selfhood (bdag byid gcig pu'i ma rig pa) arises as consciousness, but is not recognized as such. Secondly, through the co-emergent ignorance (lhan cig skyes pa'i ma rig pa), the unconsciousness of the true essence and that consciousness emerge together. Yet it is thirdly, through the ignorance of the imaginary (kun tu brtag pa'i ma rig pa) that one's own perceptions are externally discerned. Since these three aspects arise diversely from a single essence, they arise from the ground as the appearance of the ground; and since this is not known to have been self-originated, the threefold which subjectively discerns objects is the causal condition of samsara.

then he quotes the sgra thal 'gyur:
The basis of bewilderment ('khrul pa) is ignorance.
Ignorance has three forms.

he continues:
From the very moment of bewilderment, that same bewilderment arises as the ground-of-all (kun gzhi, alaya) in its role as the ignorance, the naturally obscuring expressive power, which is the unconsciousness of the true essence. Dependent upon that (ground of all) is the mind which is the consciousness of the ground-of-all and the six conflicting emotions which orignate from it.


so there is a progression of 1) ground to 2)ignorance arising as appearance of the ground, to 3)bewilderment arising based on that ignorance, to 4)the kun gzhi arising together with the bewilderment and becoming the basis of 5) mind and afflictive emotions.
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby heart » Thu Feb 23, 2012 7:03 pm

gad rgyangs wrote:
From the very moment of bewilderment, that same bewilderment arises as the ground-of-all (kun gzhi, alaya) in its role as the ignorance, the naturally obscuring expressive power, which is the unconsciousness of the true essence. Dependent upon that (ground of all) is the mind which is the consciousness of the ground-of-all and the six conflicting emotions which orignate from it.


so there is a progression of 1) ground to 2)ignorance arising as appearance of the ground, to 3)bewilderment arising based on that ignorance, to 4)the kun gzhi arising together with the bewilderment and becoming the basis of 5) mind and afflictive emotions.


You miss something essential gad rgyangs. Confusion arises because of the ground manifestation not from it. If you were correct Kuntuzangpo could not be realized without ever being ignorant.

/magnus
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby Pero » Thu Feb 23, 2012 7:56 pm

Pero wrote:
Namdrol wrote:Your major premise and minor premise don't match. Therefore, the conclusion is faulty.

Further, ignorance is prior to the appearance of samsara and nirvana, correct? Since ignorance is prior to the appearance of the basis, consequently, ignorance is not an appearance of the basis.

Ignorance exists before the basis appears; therefore ignorance is not an appearance of the basis.

Namdrol could you please provide some quotes from where you got this? Looking at Tshigdon Mdzod it seems to me that it is saying that ignorance is not part of the appearances of the base. However I can't find anything that says that ignorance is prior to the appearance but more looks like the opposite (or maybe that they arise at the same time?). What is there to be ignorant about before the appearance of the basis?

Namdrol? :smile:
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby Malcolm » Thu Feb 23, 2012 8:01 pm

Namdrol could you please provide some quotes from where you got this? Looking at Tshigdon Mdzod it seems to me that it is saying that ignorance is not part of the appearances of the base. However I can't find anything that says that ignorance is prior to the appearance but more looks like the opposite (or maybe that they arise at the same time?). What is there to be ignorant about before the appearance of the basis?



There is no avidyā in the basis, but through non-recognition, avidyā depends on vidyā after the appearances of the basis. This is only possible if the awareness and knowing factor which are complete in the basis are not aware of themselves (which they aren't) That lack of knowledge I argue is a species of non-afflictive ignorance.

Samantabhadra upon the arising of the basis possesses the first two kinds of ignorance but never the third (imputing ignorance).

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Re: Ground of Being

Postby gad rgyangs » Thu Feb 23, 2012 9:51 pm

heart wrote:
gad rgyangs wrote:
From the very moment of bewilderment, that same bewilderment arises as the ground-of-all (kun gzhi, alaya) in its role as the ignorance, the naturally obscuring expressive power, which is the unconsciousness of the true essence. Dependent upon that (ground of all) is the mind which is the consciousness of the ground-of-all and the six conflicting emotions which orignate from it.


so there is a progression of 1) ground to 2)ignorance arising as appearance of the ground, to 3)bewilderment arising based on that ignorance, to 4)the kun gzhi arising together with the bewilderment and becoming the basis of 5) mind and afflictive emotions.


You miss something essential gad rgyangs. Confusion arises because of the ground manifestation not from it. If you were correct Kuntuzangpo could not be realized without ever being ignorant.

/magnus


the passage is discussing the origin of the phenomena of samsara as it clearly says.
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby Sherab » Fri Feb 24, 2012 1:32 am

More 2 cents:
(1) If darkness is a phenomenon in its own right, independent of the phenomenon of light, no amount of light will be able to dispel darkness. Similarly, if ignorance is a phenomenon in its own right, independent of recognition of the true state, then no amount of recognition of the true state will be able to dispel ignorance.
(2) If ignorance is a phenomenon in its own right, then it is something that has to be actively eliminated. If so, the practice of resting in the natural state with recognition will not be soteriologically effective. Another method is needed to eliminate the ignorance.
(3) If ignorance is not a phenomenon in its own right, then what is it dependent on? If it is dependent on recognition, then ignorance has to be the mere absence of recognition. If it is not, then Dzogchen teachings and practices will be inconsistent as indicated in (2) above.
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby heart » Fri Feb 24, 2012 6:47 am

gad rgyangs wrote:
the passage is discussing the origin of the phenomena of samsara as it clearly says.


"Kyema!
Although I am devoid of confusion, confusion arose from my expression. After the nature manifested unobstructedly from the unchanging ground, ignorance naturally manifested from the indeterminate compassion. For example, although the sky does not truly posses clouds, the clouds still arise momentarily. Likewise, no ignorance exist in the ground, yet ignorance naturally arise from the aspect of what manifested as compassion. Thus, the 'natural state of the ground of spontaneous presence' was formed."

The Tantra of Great Auspicious Beauty
Quote is from The Circle of the Sun by Tsele Natsok Rangdrol.

/magnus
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby gad rgyangs » Fri Feb 24, 2012 7:35 am

heart wrote:
gad rgyangs wrote:
the passage is discussing the origin of the phenomena of samsara as it clearly says.


"Kyema!
Although I am devoid of confusion, confusion arose from my expression. After the nature manifested unobstructedly from the unchanging ground, ignorance naturally manifested from the indeterminate compassion. For example, although the sky does not truly posses clouds, the clouds still arise momentarily. Likewise, no ignorance exist in the ground, yet ignorance naturally arise from the aspect of what manifested as compassion. Thus, the 'natural state of the ground of spontaneous presence' was formed."

The Tantra of Great Auspicious Beauty
Quote is from The Circle of the Sun by Tsele Natsok Rangdrol.

/magnus


exactly.
Thoroughly tame your own mind.
This is (possibly) the teaching of Buddha.
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby heart » Fri Feb 24, 2012 8:17 am

gad rgyangs wrote:
heart wrote:
gad rgyangs wrote:
the passage is discussing the origin of the phenomena of samsara as it clearly says.


"Kyema!
Although I am devoid of confusion, confusion arose from my expression. After the nature manifested unobstructedly from the unchanging ground, ignorance naturally manifested from the indeterminate compassion. For example, although the sky does not truly posses clouds, the clouds still arise momentarily. Likewise, no ignorance exist in the ground, yet ignorance naturally arise from the aspect of what manifested as compassion. Thus, the 'natural state of the ground of spontaneous presence' was formed."

The Tantra of Great Auspicious Beauty
Quote is from The Circle of the Sun by Tsele Natsok Rangdrol.

/magnus


exactly.


"Likewise, no ignorance exist in the ground, yet ignorance naturally arise from the aspect of what manifested as compassion."

/magnus
"To reject practice by saying, 'it is conceptual!' is the path of fools. A tendency of the inexperienced and something to be avoided."
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Re: Ground of Being

Postby gad rgyangs » Fri Feb 24, 2012 3:08 pm

heart wrote:
"Likewise, no ignorance exist in the ground, yet ignorance naturally arise from the aspect of what manifested as compassion."

/magnus


exactly.
Thoroughly tame your own mind.
This is (possibly) the teaching of Buddha.
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