Reasons for Rebirth

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Re: Reasons for Rebirth

Postby Malcolm » Sun Apr 24, 2011 11:20 pm

Anders Honore wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
Astus wrote:Namdrol,

You say that in Vajrayana they add a third - not known before component, vayu, what makes a dualist view monist? I'm not sure if monism is really a better concept than dualism when both are pretty much substantialist. Also, if dharmas are understood not as ultimate realities but provisional categories of multiform functions within the realm of experience there is neither dualism nor monism.



Vāyu is the material element of air (part of the rūpaskandha). Specifically, the mind and the prana vāyu are merged and inseparable.

The Mind/body problem is one that plagues rebirth explanations because Sutrayāna Buddhists are unable to give an account of the medium through which a mind passes from one body to the next. Vajrayāna in general solves that problem through vāyu. Such an account simply does not exist in sutra.

In sutrayāna mind and matter are different substances.

N


This doesn't really solve the problem as much as move it to a different sphere. From what you present here, you still have the problem of explaining how something physical, a wind, can produce or translate into something mental. It's the same old issue that gnaws at modern psychology and neuroscience and we still haven't come up with much better than 'it's magic'. Incidentally, immaterialism seems to be the only position that neatly sidesteps this issue. Well, radical physicalism would too if it were even actually imaginable, let alone moderately coherent.


No, it is not a problem at all.

Matter possesses the capacity for intelligence.
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Re: Reasons for Rebirth

Postby Malcolm » Sun Apr 24, 2011 11:23 pm

Anders Honore wrote:This doesn't really solve the problem as much as move it to a different sphere. From what you present here, you still have the problem of explaining how something physical, a wind, can produce or translate into something mental. It's the same old issue that gnaws at modern psychology and neuroscience and we still haven't come up with much better than 'it's magic'. Incidentally, immaterialism seems to be the only position that neatly sidesteps this issue. Well, radical physicalism would too if it were even actually imaginable, let alone moderately coherent.


Consciousness and matter are inseparable.

You are merely restating the lower Buddhist position regarding substance dualism ala Descarte.

From a tantric perspective, for example, thoughts (citta) are movements of vāyu in the channels of the body.

There is only a contradiction of you regard mind and matter as different in some essential way.

They are not.

N
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Re: Reasons for Rebirth

Postby Anders » Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:08 am

Namdrol wrote:No, it is not a problem at all.

Matter possesses the capacity for intelligence.


Sure, but this can not account for the qualitative experience of consciousness.

Namdrol wrote:Consciousness and matter are inseparable.

You are merely restating the lower Buddhist position regarding substance dualism ala Descarte.

From a tantric perspective, for example, thoughts (citta) are movements of vāyu in the channels of the body.

There is only a contradiction of you regard mind and matter as different in some essential way.

They are not.


Again, you have the same problem as the radical physicalists with such an explanation. You may be able to account for the process in a physical sense, but nevertheless can not account for how this physical process gives rise to, or is, the qualitative experience of something mental.

I'm not actually restating any sutra position here. This is such a basic philosophical issue of continual relevance in the face of modern science that hasn't produced a satisfactory answer so far, and you're basically trying for a freebie pass on this by re-hashing totally standard failed arguments on this topic under the guise of 'it's nondual man'. What you have advanced so far is no different really to the debunked scientistic claims of "aside from c-fiber stimulation, there is no such phenomena as pain."

It still doesn't account for the connection between the epistemic experience of mentality and the physical process this is supposedly the same as. It remain a 'magic' factor here and this isn't changed by going nondual on it without accounting for how it is supposedly so. It is the basic question the philosophical zombie can not ask: If mind is something physical, how is it that my experience is something mental? Claiming it is nondual simply moves the obvious problem of dualist mind-body causation in a lateral and less obvious direction, but it doesn't resolve the problems of it.
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Re: Reasons for Rebirth

Postby LastLegend » Mon Apr 25, 2011 12:07 pm

After have been reciting a mantra for a couple years and your appearance appears peaceful and bright, is this Mind or matter or both is one? Now try to change your appearance with plastic surgery, and compare this to reciting mantra as a way to change your appearance. Do you still think Mind and matter are separate or dualistic?

So When Mind is pure, Land is Pure. How is this different from what I said above?
Last edited by LastLegend on Mon Apr 25, 2011 12:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Reasons for Rebirth

Postby Malcolm » Mon Apr 25, 2011 3:20 pm

Anders Honore wrote:
Namdrol wrote:No, it is not a problem at all.

Matter possesses the capacity for intelligence.


Sure, but this can not account for the qualitative experience of consciousness.



Qualitative experience of consciousness is mediated by sense organs. No sense organs, no cognitions.



Namdrol wrote:Consciousness and matter are inseparable.

You are merely restating the lower Buddhist position regarding substance dualism ala Descarte.

From a tantric perspective, for example, thoughts (citta) are movements of vāyu in the channels of the body.

There is only a contradiction of you regard mind and matter as different in some essential way.

They are not.


Again, you have the same problem as the radical physicalists with such an explanation. You may be able to account for the process in a physical sense, but nevertheless can not account for how this physical process gives rise to, or is, the qualitative experience of something mental.


The problem is yours merely for framing the question in that way. There are six dhātus -- earth, water, fire, air, space and consciousness. They form a continuum from gross to subtle. But even so called consciousness has the properties of the other five, so it stands to reason that the other five have the properties of consciousness as well. Hence, nāma and rūpa are completely inseparable -- not because "everything is mind" as our friend adinatha would have it, but rather because the six dhātus themselves describe six different fields which are completely intermeshed and interrelated. In other words, the physical universe innately possesses the capacity for intelligence. There is no consciousness at any time, anywhere that is free from matter.




I'm not actually restating any sutra position here. This is such a basic philosophical issue of continual relevance in the face of modern science that hasn't produced a satisfactory answer so far, and you're basically trying for a freebie pass on this by re-hashing totally standard failed arguments on this topic under the guise of 'it's nondual man'. What you have advanced so far is no different really to the debunked scientistic claims of "aside from c-fiber stimulation, there is no such phenomena as pain."


It's different in that it is based on the most subtle Buddhist principles that discuss these things. This point of view that I am enunciating it not physicalism.

It still doesn't account for the connection between the epistemic experience of mentality and the physical process this is supposedly the same as. It remain a 'magic' factor here and this isn't changed by going nondual on it without accounting for how it is supposedly so. It is the basic question the philosophical zombie can not ask: If mind is something physical, how is it that my experience is something mental? Claiming it is nondual simply moves the obvious problem of dualist mind-body causation in a lateral and less obvious direction, but it doesn't resolve the problems of it.


It completely resolves the problem. Matter is intelligent. If it was not, then we would be inert corpses. Assuming that mind and matter are somehow uniquely different in an absolute substantial sense is Cartesian Dualism. In fact, you can either say matter is the gross manifestation of consciousness or that consciousness is the most subtle manifestation of matter, it does not really matter. The sadadhātu has one cause — avidyā. When that cause, avidyā is removed, all six sadadhātus vanish. In the meantime, consciousness is not separable from the pañcamahābhutani. This nature of consciousness argument engaged in by Chalmers, and the physicalists is pretty boring. There is no split between mind and matter -- thinking there is one is a double delusion.
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Re: Reasons for Rebirth

Postby Indrajala » Mon Apr 25, 2011 3:22 pm

Namdrol, would you say your position is one of panpsychism?
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Re: Reasons for Rebirth

Postby Malcolm » Mon Apr 25, 2011 3:31 pm

Huseng wrote:Namdrol, would you say your position is one of panpsychism?


It is a better position than the crypto Saṃkhya that most Buddhists advocate.

But not exactly panpsychism.
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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

Though there are infinite liberating gateways of Dharma,
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-- Buddha Samantabhadri
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Re: Reasons for Rebirth

Postby Jikan » Mon Apr 25, 2011 3:56 pm

Namdrol wrote:
Huseng wrote:Namdrol, would you say your position is one of panpsychism?


It is a better position than the crypto Saṃkhya that most Buddhists advocate.

But not exactly panpsychism.


might the world be better off with more emphasis on positions such as the Sautrantika view that (as far as I understand it...) suggests that things really do exist at the conventional level, as an antidote to nihilism?
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Re: Reasons for Rebirth

Postby Malcolm » Mon Apr 25, 2011 3:58 pm

Jikan wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
Huseng wrote:Namdrol, would you say your position is one of panpsychism?


It is a better position than the crypto Saṃkhya that most Buddhists advocate.

But not exactly panpsychism.


might the world be better off with more emphasis on positions such as the Sautrantika view that (as far as I understand it...) suggests that things really do exist at the conventional level, as an antidote to nihilism?



The Madhyamaka approach is the accept whatever people accept as conventionally real without analysis, and to disabuse them of notions that contradict either dependent origination or emptiness (i.e. first causes and natures).

Of course, once the conventional is analyzed it is a different story.
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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: Reasons for Rebirth

Postby Mr. G » Mon Apr 25, 2011 9:10 pm

Closed temporarily for cleaning. :smile:

Reopened. Split topic: Yogacara, Dzogchen, Experience
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Re: Reasons for Rebirth

Postby mindyourmind » Tue Apr 26, 2011 1:54 pm

Astus wrote:Here is the best straightforward explanation of rebirth I've met so far. From the book The Center of the Sunlit Sky: Madhyamaka in the Kagyü Tradition by Karl Brunnhölzl, p. 183-185.

"



I am working through this book now, it's really very good.

I will try to comment on the quoted section a bit later.
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Re: Reasons for Rebirth

Postby Sherlock » Sat Feb 18, 2012 10:23 am

Namdrol,

Can you recommend any books that goes into this?

Are you saying that every atom has consciousness to some degree or that atoms in certain combinations can produce consciousness?
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