emptiness = interdependence?

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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby Malcolm » Wed Apr 06, 2011 9:13 pm

TMingyur wrote:Non-grasping, non-attachment, non-craving. No agent experiencing.

Kind regards



Exactly that is the emptiness taught first by the Buddha, and reinforced by Nāgārjuna when Abhidharma speculations deviated into substantialist speculation. There is no other emptiness apart from selflessness. Selflessness = emptiness = dependent origination.

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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby retrofuturist » Thu Apr 07, 2011 5:35 am

Greetings,

Namdrol wrote:Exactly that is the emptiness taught first by the Buddha, and reinforced by Nāgārjuna when Abhidharma speculations deviated into substantialist speculation. There is no other emptiness apart from selflessness.

Agreed.

My interest from a sutta perspective, is that the Mahavihara Theravadins also had a similar tendency to deviate into substantialist speculation, and whilst Nāgārjuna was addressing the Sarvastivadins, what he had to say is also applicable in many ways to the Theravada commentarial-level Abhidhamma doctrine. Alas, historically the Mahaviharans were not challenged by Nāgārjuna, but modern bhikkhus such as Venerable Nanananda are doing a fine job of challenging and undermining the Theravada "substantialist speculation" in much the way Nāgārjuna did back in the day, not by references to Nāgārjuna's works, but from the Pali Canon itself. I'm not sure if you're familiar with venerable Nanananda's works, but he is a veritable tour de force with regards to insightful understandings of the Pali Canon, rooted in sunyata. Concept And Reality, Magic Of The Mind and the Nibbana Sermons are his definitive classics.

Maitri,
Retro. :)
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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby Pema Rigdzin » Thu Apr 07, 2011 6:15 am

Rael wrote:there is no drama other than what ever you want to see....Padwaaan sit and learn ...don't knock the messenger....and stop being a suck up....suck ups are not what the Buddha intended to produce.... :tongue:

there was nothing to figure out......



Rael,

I'm at a loss for words. You really are clueless.
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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby muni » Thu Apr 07, 2011 9:12 am

We are all in a way clueless (lacking an object of knowledge)) as empty beyond wathever attributes and expectations.
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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby Tara » Thu Apr 07, 2011 10:48 am

Please note several off topic posts have been deleted. Please keep to the topic "emptiness = interdependence?" and refrain from making personal comments about other members.

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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby norman » Tue Apr 12, 2011 9:46 pm

There is no emptiness, nor any ”structural relationship”. In counterpart to Form, to the universe, we have emptiness or voidness, which is Nothing, because the world is Everything that appears to be. It is the absence of everything, which is Nothing at all, that implies its positive aspect, so that Nothing, being that which is not, is also that which appears to be. Appearance, that which appears to be, is nothing in itself, because it can only be apparent, as such, when implied as being counterpart to nothing, which is not.

Objects have no objective qualities. Any perceived attribute is all it is as an object. Its attributes and its objectivity are identical, they are two side of the same coin. Its objectivity is therefore only an appearance, since all it is, is whatever we perceive it to be (the qualities, attributes).

The notion that the earth is round is essentially no different than the notion that the world is flat. Neither has any existence as objects, since the perceived qualities (shapes, substances, etc) are identical with its appearances. We cannot separate the perceived roundness from the appearance of the earth, as such. Therefore no deductions or syllogisms can be made that would define it objectively, since all we have are separate qualities and attributes, concepts or dharmas. The object is a convention.

Sherab wrote:Hi Norman,

"Form is empty. Emptiness is form".

I think I got what you are saying. Your posts seemed to me to address the first part of the above quote pretty well. But I've not quite got how you addressed the second part.

For me, all phenomena are mere appearances or mere illusions. All phenomena would include all mind and matter. The "structural" relationship between the illusion of mind and the illusion of matter is what that allows emptiness to appear in various forms. That "structural" relationship is dependent origination. But as mind and matter are empty, even dependent origination itself, the structural relationship, cannot be anything else but empty.
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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby Malcolm » Tue Apr 12, 2011 10:09 pm

Sounds like you're stuck on Heidegger's question: "Why is there something rather than nothing"?

Appearances are not nothing, since they appear, but they are not something, since they are not findable.

Therefore, appearances are neither something (existent) nor nothing (non-existent), but are empty of these two extremes.

This is the middle way.


norman wrote:There is no emptiness, nor any ”structural relationship”. In counterpart to Form, to the universe, we have emptiness or voidness, which is Nothing, because the world is Everything that appears to be. It is the absence of everything, which is Nothing at all, that implies its positive aspect, so that Nothing, being that which is not, is also that which appears to be. Appearance, that which appears to be, is nothing in itself, because it can only be apparent, as such, when implied as being counterpart to nothing, which is not.

Objects have no objective qualities. Any perceived attribute is all it is as an object. Its attributes and its objectivity are identical, they are two side of the same coin. Its objectivity is therefore only an appearance, since all it is, is whatever we perceive it to be (the qualities, attributes).

The notion that the earth is round is essentially no different than the notion that the world is flat. Neither has any existence as objects, since the perceived qualities (shapes, substances, etc) are identical with its appearances. We cannot separate the perceived roundness from the appearance of the earth, as such. Therefore no deductions or syllogisms can be made that would define it objectively, since all we have are separate qualities and attributes, concepts or dharmas. The object is a convention.
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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Apr 13, 2011 12:13 am

Greetings,

Namdrol wrote:Appearances are not nothing, since they appear, but they are not something, since they are not findable.

Therefore, appearances are neither something (existent) nor nothing (non-existent), but are empty of these two extremes.

This is the middle way.

:thumbsup:

Not even remotely crypto-annihilationist...

Metta,
Retro. :)
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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby Sherab » Wed Apr 13, 2011 12:45 am

@ Norman,

I think what you said in your last post does not really differ in meaning from my post that you were responding to. We just went around it in different ways. But neither your post nor mine really explain the ground of appearances. Although I use the term "structural relationship" (in the sense of "this--that, that--this, this--this, that--that, etc"), as it is equally illusory, it really does not explain the ground of empty appearances. I think the answer to that can be found in the third turning sutras provided that they are not interpreted in the way of the Mind Only school and provided that it is not interpreted as something transcending (ie. separate from) everything.
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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby ground » Wed Apr 13, 2011 2:09 am

Namdrol wrote:Therefore, appearances are neither something (existent) nor nothing (non-existent), but are empty of these two extremes.

This is the middle way.


For this kind of middle way the mere thought "existence" is introduced in the first place and the mere thought "emptiness" is produced in its aftermath. Thoughts spinning aound.
Without clinging in the first place neither extreme nor middle.

Kind regards
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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby Malcolm » Wed Apr 13, 2011 2:33 am

TMingyur wrote:
Namdrol wrote:Therefore, appearances are neither something (existent) nor nothing (non-existent), but are empty of these two extremes.

This is the middle way.


For this kind of middle way the mere thought "existence" is introduced in the first place and the mere thought "emptiness" is produced in its aftermath. Thoughts spinning aound.
Without clinging in the first place neither extreme nor middle.

Kind regards



TMingyur:

In order to be free from clinging, first there must be clinging from which to be free. In order for clinging to occur, the thought "this exists" or "this does not exist" must arise concerning some apparent phenomena. In order to be free from clinging, the thought, "this is empty" must arise.

There is no such a thing as "without clinging in the first place" because sentient beings, in the first place, appropriate aggregates based on clinging to aggregates they apprehend as existent.

In order to be free from clinging to these addictive aggregates (all conditioned appearances, both mental and physical) apprehended as existent, one must learn to see these as aggregates of empty of identity and whatever pertains to an identity. When one has seen that the aggregates are empty of a identity and whatever pertains to an identity, at that point, and at that point alone, will one be "without clinging". Without seeing the absence of identity of apparent phenomena, there is no way in which one can be free from clinging.

In other words, without eradicating the afflictions (moha, rāga, dveśa) that drive the cycle of samsara, one will never eliminate the instantiation of affliction called "clinging". Without seeing the emptiness of phenomena i.e. their absence of identity, one will never eradicate the afflictions.
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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

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he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby ground » Wed Apr 13, 2011 2:56 am

Namdrol wrote:
TMingyur wrote:
Namdrol wrote:Therefore, appearances are neither something (existent) nor nothing (non-existent), but are empty of these two extremes.

This is the middle way.


For this kind of middle way the mere thought "existence" is introduced in the first place and the mere thought "emptiness" is produced in its aftermath. Thoughts spinning aound.
Without clinging in the first place neither extreme nor middle.

Kind regards



TMingyur:

In order to be free from clinging, first there must be clinging from which to be free. In order for clinging to occur, the thought "this exists" or "this does not exist" must arise concerning some apparent phenomena. In order to be free from clinging, the thought, "this is empty" must arise.


This is our dissent. I say that it is "attachment" (or "clinging") that can be directly experienced but you prefer "thinking about" and infer "it must be existence that is 'felt' and that causes the clinging". I consider this to be philosophical fabrication deviating from direct experience and leading to further deviating fabrications and ... to "the thicket of views".


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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Apr 13, 2011 3:20 am

Greetings TMingyur,

But what is there to "cling" to if one does not first establish a false dichotomy between subject and object? What "clings" and "to what"?

The afflicted cognition which gives rise to all samskaras preceeding clinging cannot be ignored in any account of duhkha.

Maitri,
Retro. :)
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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby Dexing » Wed Apr 13, 2011 3:35 am

TMingyur wrote:I say... directly experienced but you prefer "thinking about" and infer... I consider this to be philosophical fabrication deviating from direct experience and leading to further deviating fabrications and ... to "the thicket of views".


Isn't this your response to EVERY topic here? :coffee:
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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby Malcolm » Wed Apr 13, 2011 3:57 am

TMingyur wrote:
This is our dissent. I say that it is "attachment" (or "clinging") that can be directly experienced but you prefer "thinking about" and infer "it must be existence that is 'felt' and that causes the clinging". I consider this to be philosophical fabrication deviating from direct experience and leading to further deviating fabrications and ... to "the thicket of views".


Kind regards



You seem to be clinging tightly to a thicket of views in an attempt to avoid that thicket.

"It exists", "it does not exist" is an ingrained habitual imputation -- that is a view,that is also a thought. Apart from these two views, there are no other views since all views can be summarized into these two positions or thoughts.

The ingrained habitual imputation "It exists" or "it does not exist" is the cause of clinging or attachment. There is no existence to be "felt". Existence/non-existence is an imputation that lacks a basis.

From another perspective, clinging can never be an unmediated experience since it is following craving, which follow sensation. When there is no craving, there can be no clinging. When there is craving, this is accompanied by the thought, "I want this", "I don't want that".

A sensation on the other hand, does not necessarily involve clinging since sense consciousnesses are wholly non-conceptual, and and their object is in the present moment. Clinging is an operation of the manas, and therefore, constantly involved with past moments of sense perception. Hence clinging is a wholly conceptual state, divorced from non-conceptual sense cognitions, based on craving. Craving is also function of manas, and is also supported on a past object, the object of sensation produced during contact.

So, while it is possible to experience an attachment directly that experience is based on a thought, divorced from the sense percept of that object of attachments. Attachment therefore, cannot be direct experiences, although they themselves can be directly experiences as mental objects.
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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby ground » Wed Apr 13, 2011 4:06 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings TMingyur,

But what is there to "cling" to if one does not first establish a false dichotomy between subject and object? What "clings" and "to what"?

The afflicted cognition which gives rise to all samskaras preceeding clinging cannot be ignored in any account of duhkha.

Maitri,
Retro. :)


Your question already established for you what you call "dichotomy".

You are asking "if there is this then what is its cause?" A question which necessarily entails either endless regression or deliberate renunciation from asking further at a point choosen at will.

My "point chosen at will" rests with what the Buddha taught.

Why?

Because fabrications are distraction.

From the perpective of analytical thinking you may conclude "dichotomy" because language in analytical context is dichotomous. If one applies terms in the context of analytical thinking then these are either conventionally "valid" (rightly applied) or not. Thought then tends to fabricate "true" or "false" for what is just "valid or not" according to language.

On the most basic level of the sphere "direct experience and language" there is just labelling without additionally fabricating relations between the so labelled. Each fabrication in addition to labelling distorts further. The labelling is already a distortion but there is still a link to direct experience. The fabrication of relations between the so labelled however completely "lifts off" and leaps into the sphere of mere thought there being no link to direct experience.

E.g. once pondering about "dichotomy" which is mere thought (since it is a fabricated relation) one then may ask "What is the relation beween 'dichotomy' and 'existence'"? And so one relation after the other is fabricated and direct experience is completely forgotten. This is the sphere of "philosophy, i.e. speculation".

The Buddha taught "If there is this then there is that" or "with the cessation of this there comes the cessation of that" You can validly label "this" and "that" and verify that the Buddha was right. And since you know "this" and "that" through direct experience you can validly confirm the lack of "this" and "that". But what is mere thought in the first place cannot be confirmed to be absent later on because there has not been a link to direct experience and confirming absence presupposes to know that (through direct experience) which is allegedly absent.


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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby Malcolm » Wed Apr 13, 2011 4:22 am

TMingyur wrote:
The Buddha taught "If there is this then there is that" or "with the cessation of this there comes the cessation of that" You can validly label "this" and "that" and verify that the Buddha was right. And since you know "this" and "that" through direct experience you can validly confirm the lack of "this" and "that". But what is mere thought in the first place cannot be confirmed to be absent later on because there has not been a link to direct experience and confirming absence presupposes to know that (through direct experience) which is allegedly absent.


What, precisely, do you mean by "direct experience"?

How can "this or "that" be known without labeling "this" as "this" or "that" as "that"?

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" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby ground » Wed Apr 13, 2011 4:30 am

Namdrol wrote:
TMingyur wrote:
The Buddha taught "If there is this then there is that" or "with the cessation of this there comes the cessation of that" You can validly label "this" and "that" and verify that the Buddha was right. And since you know "this" and "that" through direct experience you can validly confirm the lack of "this" and "that". But what is mere thought in the first place cannot be confirmed to be absent later on because there has not been a link to direct experience and confirming absence presupposes to know that (through direct experience) which is allegedly absent.


What, precisely, do you mean by "direct experience"?

A synonym for "direct perception", i.e. "perception perceives" ... without fabricating synthesizing thought.

Namdrol wrote:How can "this or "that" be known without labeling "this" as "this" or "that" as "that"?

As "this" and "that" it can only be known through labelling. If there is no labelling as "this" and "that" then there is either "direct experience" (s. above) or stupor/dullness.

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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Apr 13, 2011 7:10 am

TMingyur wrote:A synonym for "direct perception", i.e. "perception perceives" ... without fabricating synthesizing thought.
And you have experienced this or is it something you learnt by reading an account of the experience?
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One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
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Re: emptiness = interdependence?

Postby Mr. G » Wed Apr 13, 2011 11:39 am

Apart from the discernment of the dharmas, there is no
means to extinguish the defilments, and it is by reason of the
defilements that the world wanders in the ocean of existence.

- Vasubhandu
    How foolish you are,
    grasping the letter of the text and ignoring its intention!
    - Vasubandhu
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