I was wondering if it would be possible to attain some assistance on how to explain the Buddha-Dharma, infact Eastern Dharma, in light of the Law of Non-Contradiction (LNC).
LNC is One of the Three Classic Laws of thought which are attributed to Aristotle (384 BC – 322 BC).
LNC essentially states that it is not possible for something to be True and Not True at the same time in the same context.
An example: The chair in my living room, right now, cannot be made of wood and not made of wood at the same time in the same context.
In propositional logic, LNC could be written as:
¬(X and ¬X)
which leads to:
¬X or X
i.e. Something has be NotTrue or True within a given context.
1. It is raining outside.
2. It is not raining outside.
A person who wants to argue against LNC may point out that both of these statements can be true provided that one is referring to Phoenix and the other is referring to Tallahassee. It may be raining in Tallahassee but not in Phoenix.
But if we are talking about different places, then the statements don’t contradict each other, and consequently, they can both be true.
Another Example: A ball may be Red or it may not be Red within the same context, however it cannot be Red and NotRed in same context.
Now Wave Particle Duality did seem to hold some hope, but this has been refuted by several people as it is not at the same time:
The wave-particle duality is often presented as an empirical refutation of the law of non-contradiction. But this is an unfair interpretation of events. The facts of the case are that an ongoing physical phenomenon may in some circumstances behave with the mathematical properties of a particle and in other circumstances behave with those of a wave. The circumstances involved are certainly not one and the same.
There is empirically no actual superimposition or ‘interbeing’ of wave and particle in the same respect, in the same place, at the same time, in the same perspective of the onlooker. The two states are clearly separated by space, time or other circumstances. Therefore, the law of non-contradiction is in fact never breached. Therefore, no epistemological or metaphysical difficulty arises.
Source: http://www.thelogician.net/6_reflect/6_ ... ter_12.htm
I have looked quite extensively for counter examples to LNC in several fields, including Quantum Mechanics, but am yet to come across one that has not been refuted because they do not meet the conditions of LNC.
Many may be wondering what this has to do with The Buddha-Dharma and, from my current understanding, it is everything.
The Buddha-Dharma essentially refutes LNC by saying Merit is NotMerit, One enters the realm of Perception and NonPerception, Everything is Real and NotReal etc... at the same time in the same context.
LNC is essentially used to imply that The Dharma from its very foundations have no grounding in logic and as a result, reality. Therefore The teachings are not a good model to on which to base the world because they are simply made up.
Looking up LNC I came across Stanford University which highlighted the Tetralemma. Please see their understanding on this topic:
5. LNC and the Buddhist Tetralemma
Beyond the Western canon, the brunt of the battle over LNC has been largely borne by the Buddhists, particularly in the exposition by Nāgārjuna of the catuṣkoṭi or tetralemma (c. 200 A.D.; cf. Bochenski 1961: Part VI, Raju 1954, Garfield 1995, Tillemans 1999, Garfield & Priest 2002), also known as the four-cornered or fourfold negation. Consider the following four possible truth outcomes for any statement and its (apparent) contradictory:
(i) S is P
(ii) S is not P
(iii) S is both P and not-P
(iv) S is neither P nor not-P
For instances of the positive tetralemma, on Nāgārjuna's account, all four statement types can or must be accepted:
Everything is real and not real.
Both real and not real.
Neither real nor not real.
That is Lord Buddha's teaching.
—Mūla-madhyamaka-kārikā 18:8, quoted in Garfield (1995: 102)
Such cases arise only when we are beyond the realm to which ordinary logic applies, when “the sphere of thought has ceased.” On the other hand, much more use is made of the negative tetralemma, in which all four of the statements in (9) can or must be rejected. Is this tantamount, as it appears, to the renunciation of LEM and LNC, the countenancing of both gaps and gluts, and thus—in Aristotle's view—the overthrow of all bounds of rational argument?
Unassertability can be read as the key to the apparent paradox of the catuṣkoṭi as well. The venerable text in Majjhima-nikāya 72, relating the teachings of the historical Buddha, offers a precursor for Nāgārjuna's doctrine of the negative tetralemma. Gotama is responding to a monk's question concerning the doctrine of rebirth (quoted in Robinson 1967: 54):
Gotama, where is the monk reborn whose mind is thus freed?
Vaccha, it is not true to say that he is reborn.
Then, Gotama, he is not reborn.
Vaccha, it is not true to say that he is not reborn.
Then, Gotama, he is both reborn and not reborn.
Vaccha, it is not true to say that he is both reborn and not reborn.
Then, Gotama, he is neither reborn nor not reborn.
Vaccha, it is not true to say that he is neither reborn nor not reborn.
Note the form of the translation here, or similarly that of the standard rendering of the negative catuṣkoṭi that “it profits not” to assert Φ, to assert ¬Φ, to assert both Φ and ¬Φ, or to assert neither Φ nor ¬Φ: the relevant negation can be taken to operate over an implicit modal, in particular an epistemic or assertability operator. If so, neither LEM nor LNC is directly at stake in the tetralemma: you can have your Aristotle and Buddha too.
Source: http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/contr ... #LNCBudTet
However, the Tetralemma is refuted:
...he does not succeed in this quest. For his critique depends on a misrepresentation of logical science...
Source: http://www.thelogician.net/3b_buddhist_ ... ter_01.htm
There are other areas to look into such as paraconsistent logic and Dialetheism, works by Georg Hegel, Immanuel Kant's Noumenon, as well as Graham Priest and his contemporaries, but if i may be frank it goes completely over my head.
Having thought about this for a little while, i feel that Dharmic teachings transcend Logic, is rooted in personal experience and go beyond the senses. However, if one has yet to experience this, one cannot articulate it and hence defend their position which results in the loss of faith which has sprung from not being able to answer questions put forward.
I ask my Buddhist Brothers and Sisters, and if possible, The Venerable Monks, in gaining assistance to help me resolve this issue as it is causing me some anguish.
With the greatest of respects to the Sangha,