What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby cloudburst » Tue May 08, 2012 7:17 pm

conebeckham wrote: There's ultimately no need to posit anything behind appearances, as they are the unexamined experience of worldly beings.


agree

conebeckham wrote: It is existence, in any form, as a conceptual overlay, which is utterly mistaken.


you'll have to explain that to Buddha and the Indian Madhymikas, please find quotions above.

conebeckham wrote: The charge of nihilism that is made against those who "hold" to the view of convention as illusion is based on a subtle materialism, or a lack of understanding that appearance can be asserted merely as convention, at the level of no analysis.


What I am saying is precisely that appearances is asserted merely as convention, at the level of no analysis. There is no materialism at all if we can understand, following the great masters, that what this means is conventional existence.

It seems you and those who share your view cannot help thinking that the word 'existence' automatically implies some notion of true existence, and, although it is often repeated, have trouble understanding that the Madhayamka use of the term 'existence' often refers to appearance asserted merely as convention, at the level of no analysis. The quotations above clearly have this use of the term 'existence' in mind. Please consult them.
At other times, the term existence is used to denote 'true' or 'essential' existence, this can be discerned by contextual analysis, for example

In the Mula, N says
To say "it exists" is a concept of permanence
to say "it does not exist" is a view of annihilation
Hence the learned should not dwell
In either existence or nonexistence


In Prasannapada, Chandrakirti comments on this verse
Why is it, that when you have the view that things exist and the view that they do not exist, it follows that you have the view of permanence and annihilation? As Nagarjunas Mulamadhyamakakarika says:
Whatever exists intrinsically is permanent
Since it does not become non-existent.
If you say that an intrinsically existent thing that arose before
Is now nonexistent, that entails an extreme of annihilation


So here you have a lovely example of Nagarjuna using the term 'existence' to refer to intrinsic existence. Many others can be provided.
If you investigate this, what you will discover something wonderful. You can see by context whether existence refers to un-analysed vaild convention or intrinsic existence.
In the case of the first, the great madhyamikas say "it DOES exist" in the second, "It does not exist." And therefore we can correctly say "cake exists" following the great masters, becasue we are using the term "exist" to mean unanalzyed conventions, just as they do.

conebeckham wrote:I don't know that I can explain it any more clearly than that-


I think you will find you cannot becasue of the refusal to accept the crystal-clear and textually supported discrimination between the different uses of the term "existence." As a result, you are nearly always equivocating and trying to smuggle in the distinction, which you implicitly recognize, through the use of bolding, italics and quotation marks. Many examples of this can be found in your post on this thread.
This produces confusion.

conebeckham wrote: you all may hold your own views.


Ever the gentleman. :namaste:
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby cloudburst » Tue May 08, 2012 7:21 pm

Namdrol wrote:All of this argument about relative truth is merely trying to choose one delusion over another.

Waste of time.


I recall many instances of people making similar comments on threads that you were engaged in. Your response was dismissive and even belligerent in some cases, and there were threats of banning.
Your comments therefore seem hypocritical and peevish.
If you feel this is a waste of time, please feel free to go on to your other conversations.
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby cloudburst » Tue May 08, 2012 7:28 pm

Dechen Norbu wrote: Non existents don't appear.

what happened to " med par gsal snang i.e. clearly apparent non-existent?"

On one hand you want to say that things do not exist in any way
on the other you want to say that they appear
and then to polish it all off you want to say that things are not non-existent
and also that they also don't appear?

This is nothing but a mass of contradiction, and your only move is to try to deny the law of the excluded middle so that you cannot be held accountable for your own views, which you will then deny by misquoting the scriptures and misinterpreting Buddha teachings, claiming you have no views.

it's nothing short of a catastrophe.
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby cloudburst » Tue May 08, 2012 7:36 pm

asunthatneversets wrote: the snake never appears


then why do you become afraid? Is it not the appearance of a snake?

asunthatneversets wrote:How is "awareness" any better than "mind"?


mind is such a loaded term, we are all using it in different ways. I was thinking perhaps using "awareness" will improve things. perhaps I am wrong here.

asunthatneversets wrote: Denying the use of a phrase such as "with no existence" is also denying something (just as denying the cake is denying something). If he's a nihilist for denying the cake you would likewise be one for denying the denial of the cake.


I'm not convinced you are seeing this clearly, sun. If you deny the cake exists, you contravene worldly convention, as we are repeatedly exhorted by Madhyamikas not to do. Claiming a clause incorrectly represents the meaning of what it describes is something rather different.

asunthatneversets wrote:Accepting and rejecting anything, including acceptance and rejection themselves is still a product of delusion.


This reflects a lack of appropriate discrimination. would you attack madhyamikas for continuously rejecting an essence in things?
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby Malcolm » Tue May 08, 2012 8:56 pm

cloudburst wrote: threats of banning.


Not by me. But by all means, continue with your obsession about delusion, picking the right one as it were.
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby cloudburst » Tue May 08, 2012 8:59 pm

Namdrol wrote:
cloudburst wrote: threats of banning.


Not by me. But by all means, continue with your obsession about delusion, picking the right one as it were.


thank you.
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby Andrew108 » Tue May 08, 2012 9:06 pm

These debates are very interesting. I wonder what you get for being right? If it's the truth you are after then......maybe you can't get to that truth through debate. Maybe truth or wisdom lets itself be known from it's own side. Perhaps then there is a distinction to be made between reality that is conceived (brought about as a result of logic) and truth that is genuine - that is genuine reality making itself known from it's own side - uncontrived knowing.
What the Buddha is - that's the point. It's not what the Buddha said or stands for.
Where to look for reality? In books? In the past idea of what was said? In the future expectations of a good scholar? Do the debates within the lineages even come close to explaining what reality is? The closer they come the further they are away. If you know where to look for reality (this instant moment) then you also know how to look for reality (self-liberation) - isn't this the point of the question 'what is reality'. Go and do the looking for yourself rather than take another book off the shelf.
The Blessed One said:

"What is the All? Simply the eye & forms, ear & sounds, nose & aromas, tongue & flavors, body & tactile sensations, intellect & ideas. This, monks, is called the All. Anyone who would say, 'Repudiating this All, I will describe another,' if questioned on what exactly might be the grounds for his statement, would be unable to explain, and furthermore, would be put to grief. Why? Because it lies beyond range." Sabba Sutta.
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby conebeckham » Tue May 08, 2012 9:21 pm

Andrew-
Reality is beyond the realm of conceptual thought, and therefore cannot be defined by language. But conceptual thought is the dominant mode of our minds, at least for many of us....as such, these discussions are interesting, and useful, inasmuch as they can ultimately reduce conceptual frameworks, or ontological systems. This is the ultimate goal of Prasangika consequentialism, in my view. No affirmation of any ontology, after undertaking any analysis whatsoever, and yet no denial of worldly convention on the level of the seeming, or appearances. This is what I have been taught by my teachers, this is what I understand as the message of the Madhyamika sutras and shastras. It is a "view," however, which cannot remain at the level of conceptual discourse or dialectic, but which must be carried into meditation practice, in order to be meaningful and productive.

One can study and reflect on the various presentations of philosophical tenets, but ultimately attachment to tenets is one dead end for practitioners. Then again, so are experiences of bliss, clarity, and nonthought in meditation.
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby Andrew108 » Tue May 08, 2012 9:27 pm

Yes you are right.
The Blessed One said:

"What is the All? Simply the eye & forms, ear & sounds, nose & aromas, tongue & flavors, body & tactile sensations, intellect & ideas. This, monks, is called the All. Anyone who would say, 'Repudiating this All, I will describe another,' if questioned on what exactly might be the grounds for his statement, would be unable to explain, and furthermore, would be put to grief. Why? Because it lies beyond range." Sabba Sutta.
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby asunthatneversets » Tue May 08, 2012 10:06 pm

cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote: the snake never appears


then why do you become afraid? Is it not the appearance of a snake?


The fear is a product of ignorance no doubt, predicated on the erroneous dualistic notion of a subject/object dichotomy. Just as an appearance is byproduct of dualistic grasping. I cannot deny that the resultant emanations of ignorance become vast and perverse, but are they anything other than ignorance(avidyā)?

The Ground which exists in a primeval, natural flow
Has no existence outside of it's own oneness,
Yet it appears in seven distinct ways
When conceptually delineated
Under the bias of our distorted perception.

Though it appears in these seven ways,
Such appearance is only due to our non-recognition of it's oneness
Under the influence of the presencing process of it's single essence.

(i) In the Ground's being spontaneously present,
It appears as the nucleus comprising all variety.

(ii) In it's being indeterminate,
It appears with observable features involving the psyche's flickering movements.

(iii) In it's being determinate within it's own condition,
It appears devoid of transmutation caused by mental activity.

(iv) In it's being capable of transformation,
It appears to a mind's perception in accordance with the perceiver's actions.

(v) In it's being the essence of all that is possible,
It manifests as the intrinsic essence of whatever appears.

(vi) In it's being variegated,
It appears in the mode of individualized variety.

(vii) In it's being originally pure,
It appears as primordially stainless.

All of these appear in accordance with the perceiver's varying intellectual gradations
and perspectives. While it's own condition remains originally pure throughout.

- excerpt from The Six Spheres/Sixfold Expanse Tantra (kLong Drug)


cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote:How is "awareness" any better than "mind"?


mind is such a loaded term, we are all using it in different ways. I was thinking perhaps using "awareness" will improve things. perhaps I am wrong here.


Well, you're not wrong, I only said that because (like your observation regarding the term "mind") I (also) view the term "awareness" as having become a loaded term nowadays... guilty of manifold implications which lead to erroneous views, but overall my comment was meant to elucidate that like "mind", "awareness" can be misinterpreted as reifying a substantiated suchness relative to(or containing) phenomena. I agree that "mind" would be inappropriate, likewise "awareness" would be too, but then again it all depends on how these terms are related to and the context they appear in.

Designating appearances as the dharmakāya obscures me;
Designating whatever appears as mind obscures me;
Designating wisdom as mind obscures me.
- Samantabhadra


cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote: Denying the use of a phrase such as "with no existence" is also denying something (just as denying the cake is denying something). If he's a nihilist for denying the cake you would likewise be one for denying the denial of the cake.


I'm not convinced you are seeing this clearly, sun. If you deny the cake exists, you contravene worldly convention, as we are repeatedly exhorted by Madhyamikas not to do. Claiming a clause incorrectly represents the meaning of what it describes is something rather different.


I suppose I don't view the conventional as being an established entity (in any form), be it appearance etc... it is merely a convention. The convention arises from imputation as we agreed on before, but does that truly birth an appropriated "thingness" to be deemed as anything warranting any title other than ignorance? Within the realm of conventional language I can't deny that the apparent population of persons, places, things do indeed seem to be, but upon thorough and proper investigation these same designations are found to be unreal, it's a slippery slope, and I'm sure it does just come down to differing views.

The delusory appearances of conventional truth are a great lie.
When everything is brought into the condition of gnosis in the vast expanse,
The subject and object in flickering awareness, like a child's dance,
Are neutralized in the state of awareness transcending intellect.
- (Unsure where I originally pulled this quote from)


cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote:Accepting and rejecting anything, including acceptance and rejection themselves is still a product of delusion.


This reflects a lack of appropriate discrimination. would you attack madhyamikas for continuously rejecting an essence in things?


Of course not, my point is meant to convey there is ultimately nothing to accept or reject.
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby cloudburst » Wed May 09, 2012 3:26 am

asunthatneversets wrote:
cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote: the snake never appears


then why do you become afraid? Is it not the appearance of a snake?

.... I cannot deny that the resultant emanations of ignorance become vast and perverse, but are they anything other than ignorance(avidyā)?


here the snake represents the inherently existent things we grasp at, so no it's not other than ignorance, the point here is that it DOES appear.

asunthatneversets wrote: The convention arises from imputation as we agreed on before, but does that truly birth an appropriated "thingness" to be deemed as anything warranting any title other than ignorance?


haha not sure what an "appropriated thingness" is, but I sense that what you are saying is equivalent to "inherently existent." If so, the answer would be no, of course not. Of course, something is produced conventionally, and we can correctly call it, say a cake, for example.

asunthatneversets wrote: Within the realm of conventional language I can't deny that the apparent population of persons, places, things do indeed seem to be, but upon thorough and proper investigation these same designations are found to be unreal, it's a slippery slope, and I'm sure it does just come down to differing views.


I think that anyone who would disagree with what you wrote there would be outside of Buddhism, actually.

asunthatneversets wrote:
cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote:Accepting and rejecting anything, including acceptance and rejection themselves is still a product of delusion.


This reflects a lack of appropriate discrimination. would you attack madhyamikas for continuously rejecting an essence in things?


Of course not, my point is meant to convey there is ultimately nothing to accept or reject.


This is a helpful example of how muddled and misleading it can be when things are not clearly qualified. When you say "accepting or rejecting anything...." it sounds like you are saying "accepting or rejecting anything.... when what you are actually saying is that "ultimately accepting or rejecting anything...." which is what you will say when pressed. I think your point is correct, nothing exsits ultimately.
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby asunthatneversets » Wed May 09, 2012 5:59 am

cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote:.... I cannot deny that the resultant emanations of ignorance become vast and perverse, but are they anything other than ignorance(avidyā)?


here the snake represents the inherently existent things we grasp at, so no it's not other than ignorance, the point here is that it DOES appear.


It certainly seems to.

cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote: The convention arises from imputation as we agreed on before, but does that truly birth an appropriated "thingness" to be deemed as anything warranting any title other than ignorance?


haha not sure what an "appropriated thingness" is, but I sense that what you are saying is equivalent to "inherently existent." If so, the answer would be no, of course not. Of course, something is produced conventionally, and we can correctly call it, say a cake, for example.


I would not have suggested inherent existence. Again there seems to be an appearance, just as there seems to be the appearance of objects, just as there seems to be objects, all of which are misnomers. The seeming appearances(objects) are predicated on another seeming appearance(subject), an illusion predicated on an illusion does not truly produce an appearance, it seems to appear just as there seemed to be a snake, however the snake never appeared it was illusory, likewise seeming appearances are illusions.... the conventional imputation produces nothing other than illusion, there are no subsequent conventional appearances which can be deemed "like" illusions, because nothing has been established in any way. It is the child of a barren woman, or hair on a tortoise, wholly unreal, a figment of imagination(and not even that). Illusion and only illusion.

cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote: Within the realm of conventional language I can't deny that the apparent population of persons, places, things do indeed seem to be, but upon thorough and proper investigation these same designations are found to be unreal, it's a slippery slope, and I'm sure it does just come down to differing views.


I think that anyone who would disagree with what you wrote there would be outside of Buddhism, actually.


So the nature of appearances is the controversy, whether they are illusions, or if something is indeed produced via imputation which can be designated as "like an illusion".

cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote:
Of course not, my point is meant to convey there is ultimately nothing to accept or reject.


This is a helpful example of how muddled and misleading it can be when things are not clearly qualified. When you say "accepting or rejecting anything...." it sounds like you are saying "accepting or rejecting anything.... when what you are actually saying is that "ultimately accepting or rejecting anything...." which is what you will say when pressed. I think your point is correct, nothing exsits ultimately.


Which is what I will say when pressed regarding what? Acceptance and rejection, attachment and aversion are the source of all apparent things. In the absence of acceptance and rejection there is nothing to be found, we agree on that, I'm not sure what the significance of my original statement including (or not including) "ultimately" is. I'll say it again, accepting or rejecting anything (including the very act of acceptance and the very act of rejection themselves) is a product of delusion. Acceptance and rejection presuppose a subject existing in relation to objects which can indeed be accepted or rejected, it is not so, again it is illusory. There is nothing to accept or reject.
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby 5heaps » Wed May 09, 2012 11:25 am

conebeckham wrote:There's ultimately no need to posit anything behind appearances, as they are the unexamined experience of worldly beings. It is existence, in any form, as a conceptual overlay, which is utterly mistaken.

but, how are you defining "appearances"?

because, depending on what you mean by appearances, and keeping in mind that there is more to the world than just conceptuality and internal objects, it might very well be nihilism.
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby White Lotus » Wed May 09, 2012 2:27 pm

to me, not only is there no basis to appearances, also there is no appearance, yet i see it not seeing.
in a way the two truths are done away with... there is not a thing. not even bubbles.

since there is not a thing anywhere, nor is there anywhere it is said that there is absolutely no self whatsoever of any kind. when this is seen on the relative level, it is seen on the fundamental level and visa versa.

prajna operates on the one level that is all levels. having said all this i still say that reality is reality, no embelishment, no elaboration, no confusion. the key to this argument is to see nature. when it is seen it cannot be known nor understood, only seen. infact everything i say about it probably falls short of the mark. we should not even attach to dharma nature. talk of emptiness, as above (me) is not always helpful.

we must be careful not to accuse or blame worthy exponents of the Dharma. And to remember that whatever we say about the dharma through the tool of logic and not through prajna will be a falsehood.

all things are one, and even the one does not exist... though we see it without seeing. the middle way is not nothing, nor is it anything. since it is not even nothng how could it be nihilistically conceived. ''nothing'' is still a dualistic position oppositionally relative in language to ''everything''.

best wishes, Tom.
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby White Lotus » Wed May 09, 2012 2:31 pm

problems with my computer, im sorry Dharmawheel, please delete excess posts. thank you.

rgds, Tom.
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Wed May 09, 2012 2:38 pm

No problem. :smile:
Repeated posts removed.
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby conebeckham » Wed May 09, 2012 5:47 pm

5heaps wrote:because, depending on what you mean by appearances, and keeping in mind that there is more to the world than just conceptuality and internal objects, it might very well be nihilism.


What "more to the world" other than conceptuality and internal objects is there? I'm not saying, definitively, that there isn't anything more....but I'm curious as to what you think there is..........???
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby cloudburst » Wed May 09, 2012 6:05 pm

asunthatneversets wrote:
cloudburst wrote:the point here is that it DOES appear.

It certainly seems to.


exactly.

asunthatneversets wrote:

Again there seems to be an appearance, just as there seems to be the appearance of objects, just as there seems to be objects, all of which are misnomers. The seeming appearances(objects) are predicated on another seeming appearance(subject), an illusion predicated on an illusion does not truly produce an appearance,


see how you need to qualify here in order to make your point? It's because you know that you will have to admit that it does appear, albeit not truly . Is your computer appearing to you right now? The fact that "it seems to" is precisely what appearance means. No one is saying there is actually a computer from it's own side DOING the appearing, all (here) agree there is not. But is there an appearance of a computer?

asunthatneversets wrote: it seems to appear just as there seemed to be a snake, however the snake never appeared it was illusory, likewise seeming appearances are illusions....


there seemed to be a snake means a snake appeared. There is no difference. There cannot seem to be a snake without the appearance of a snake. Is there a snake? no. does a snake appear do the deluded mind. Oh yes, otherwise, remembering that the snake here stands in for the non-existent objects of delusions, we simply would never get deluded. If an intrinsically tasty cake did not appear before the mind, how would we get attached?

If we simply must, we could say "the snake appeared it was illusory" but we can never say as you do " the snake never appeared it was illusory." If it is illusory, appear is all it can do.

asunthatneversets wrote: the conventional imputation produces nothing other than illusion, there are no subsequent conventional appearances which can be deemed "like" illusions, because nothing has been established in any way. It is the child of a barren woman, or hair on a tortoise, wholly unreal, a figment of imagination(and not even that). Illusion and only illusion.


you need to review Buddha's teachings. Examples like 'a child of a barren woman' and being 'like an illusion' are used to explain very different things. It seems making clear discriminations is something you need to improve, and until you do, your formulations will lack clarity. I'm sure your mother would be disappointed to discover that you can't tell the difference between her and an illusion of her. Did you see Tupac at Cochella? Did you see Snoop? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ajkSx_EnAhI&feature=related

asunthatneversets wrote:
So the nature of appearances is the controversy, whether they are illusions, or if something is indeed produced via imputation which can be designated as "like an illusion".


Precisely. Consult Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti to discover whether or not there is production by imputation. Don't join the hotheads who read with a literal eye, look deeper!

asunthatneversets wrote:Which is what I will say when pressed regarding what?


see above.
you say "nothing to accept or reject.."
I press, pointing out that Madhyamikas reject essence continually.
You hurriedly point out that you mean "ultimately nothing to accept or reject."


asunthatneversets wrote: I'm not sure what the significance of my original statement including (or not including) "ultimately" is.


the significance is that if you say "ultimately, there is nothing to accept or reject," that is wisdom.
If you say there is nothing to accept or reject at all on any level, you are just lost. You MUST accept that gravity draws you to the earth, otherwise you will fall off something. Granted, it is just convention, and you might say that you only "seem" to fall off something, but that's good enough to land you in the hospital, isn't it?

asunthatneversets wrote:I'll say it again, accepting or rejecting anything (including the very act of acceptance and the very act of rejection themselves) is a product of delusion.


The thing you can really respect about Namdrol (this time, at least) or Andres Honore is that they say the discussion has no meaning for them and they think it is all delusion, and then they back it up by stopping. They walk their talk. If you think this is really all delusion, get out of here, go sit on you cushion and stare blankly off into space, refuse to accept anything do not reject anything, and make us all proud. When you attain the state of Samatabhadra, send help! (sun, I hope you understand I'm just playing, I know sometimes the tone of these things can seem a bit unfriendly...)

asunthatneversets wrote:Acceptance and rejection presuppose a subject existing in relation to objects which can indeed be accepted or rejected, it is not so,


it certainly is so! I am reading this, are you not writing it? If you disagree, this is nothing but a object of ridicule for clear-thinking people. Yes, yes, conventionally, seeming..... of course, but that's the only subject and object there can be. Just read your Chandrakirti, accept the conventional as advised and watch the clarity of your thinking improve exponentially.
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby asunthatneversets » Wed May 09, 2012 8:26 pm

cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote:It certainly seems to.


exactly.


Well no, your point was that it DOES appear, and I agreed that it certainly SEEMS to appear, but does it appear? I would argue that it does not.

cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote:
Again there seems to be an appearance, just as there seems to be the appearance of objects, just as there seems to be objects, all of which are misnomers. The seeming appearances(objects) are predicated on another seeming appearance(subject), an illusion predicated on an illusion does not truly produce an appearance,


see how you need to qualify here in order to make your point? It's because you know that you will have to admit that it does appear, albeit not truly . Is your computer appearing to you right now? The fact that "it seems to" is precisely what appearance means. No one is saying there is actually a computer from it's own side DOING the appearing, all (here) agree there is not. But is there an appearance of a computer?


My point is that all of these designations are misnomers in the end, including appearance. So why do you dance on appearance and not dance on objects or sensory perception.. it's all ignorance all the way down, it all appears at once depending on what is imputed upon it, none of it truly is.

I'll have to admit it does appear? Anything can appear (to be) within the ignorance, there appears to be objects, there appears to be sensory modalities, there appears to be internal/external. NONE of it is true, none of it is real. A computer from it's own side? What sides? Within the realm of ignorance the projection of a computer may appear, but nothing has appeared other than ignorance, on "it's" own side, or on any other side.

For the sake of communication we accept these conventionalities, why you think I reject them I don't understand, you are reading my words and I am typing them, conventional language is obviously being employed to make a point.

cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote: it seems to appear just as there seemed to be a snake, however the snake never appeared it was illusory, likewise seeming appearances are illusions....


there seemed to be a snake means a snake appeared. There is no difference. There cannot seem to be a snake without the appearance of a snake. Is there a snake? no. does a snake appear do the deluded mind. Oh yes, otherwise, remembering that the snake here stands in for the non-existent objects of delusions, we simply would never get deluded. If an intrinsically tasty cake did not appear before the mind, how would we get attached?

If we simply must, we could say "the snake appeared it was illusory" but we can never say as you do " the snake never appeared it was illusory." If it is illusory, appear is all it can do.


An illusion appears, no snake, does the illusion resemble a snake? Possibly. Is there a snake? No. Likewise does it seem to appear to a mind? Yes. Does it appear to a mind? No.

cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote: the conventional imputation produces nothing other than illusion, there are no subsequent conventional appearances which can be deemed "like" illusions, because nothing has been established in any way. It is the child of a barren woman, or hair on a tortoise, wholly unreal, a figment of imagination(and not even that). Illusion and only illusion.


you need to review Buddha's teachings. Examples like 'a child of a barren woman' and being 'like an illusion' are used to explain very different things. It seems making clear discriminations is something you need to improve, and until you do, your formulations will lack clarity. I'm sure your mother would be disappointed to discover that you can't tell the difference between her and an illusion of her. Did you see Tupac at Cochella? Did you see Snoop? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ajkSx_EnAhI&feature=related


My formulations will lack clarity in your opinion, yes, judging what I am saying against your reference point you take to be a truth, and I can accept that.

Image
What'd you say bout my momma?!

Although causes, conditions, and dependent arising are explained,
And gradual entry is spoken of,
These are provisional teachings for the ignorant.
In this spontaneously present dharma,
What would it be to train gradually?
Within it's nature beyond limits,
How could composite conceptions be seen?
There is not even the slightest of assertions.
At that time, mind is the sky.
Buddha and the objects of one's experience are one.
- Ye shes snang ba rgyan

The gates to all the branches of enlightenment,
The accoutrements, when meditated on, are like a moon in water.
They arise unstained and unobstructed,
But when meditated on, they are like childish objects of experience.
- Nam mkha' che


cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote:
So the nature of appearances is the controversy, whether they are illusions, or if something is indeed produced via imputation which can be designated as "like an illusion".


Precisely. Consult Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti to discover whether or not there is production by imputation. Don't join the hotheads who read with a literal eye, look deeper!


You may be one of the hotheads my friend! Imputation produces ignorance, it is the seed which creates all duality, if you believe something is truly produced then I don't see how you can move past that self made limitation, if you feel you can then that is great, but in my eyes it is merely a barrier.

cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote:Which is what I will say when pressed regarding what?


see above.
you say "nothing to accept or reject.."
I press, pointing out that Madhyamikas reject essence continually.
You hurriedly point out that you mean "ultimately nothing to accept or reject."


Of course, you can accept and reject things all day until you're blue in the face, and some acceptance and rejection is needed to traverse the path of course, again it exists all at once on all levels mirroring the perception of the one doing the imputing. There is nothing to accept or reject, whether that is ultimately true, or just plain true, will be self evident to whom it may concern when it is appropriate.


cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote: I'm not sure what the significance of my original statement including (or not including) "ultimately" is.


the significance is that if you say "ultimately, there is nothing to accept or reject," that is wisdom.
If you say there is nothing to accept or reject at all on any level, you are just lost. You MUST accept that gravity draws you to the earth, otherwise you will fall off something. Granted, it is just convention, and you might say that you only "seem" to fall off something, but that's good enough to land you in the hospital, isn't it?


I was discussing how acceptance and rejection pertain to correct view, not how acceptance and rejection pertain to gracefully falling off a building, 'there is nothing to accept or reject' means to reject the appearance of relative laws and so on would be an unnecessary (and futile/foolish) activity.

cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote:I'll say it again, accepting or rejecting anything (including the very act of acceptance and the very act of rejection themselves) is a product of delusion.


The thing you can really respect about Namdrol (this time, at least) or Andres Honore is that they say the discussion has no meaning for them and they think it is all delusion, and then they back it up by stopping. They walk their talk. If you think this is really all delusion, get out of here, go sit on you cushion and stare blankly off into space, refuse to accept anything do not reject anything, and make us all proud. When you attain the state of Samatabhadra, send help! (sun, I hope you understand I'm just playing, I know sometimes the tone of these things can seem a bit unfriendly...)


I enjoy the discussion, I like having inconsistencies in my view drawn out... though that has yet to happen in my opinion. I enjoy a challenge, I enjoy a little debate, I like to think and discuss things and engage with people. It's all in the name of fun. It is undoubtably all delusion, and why I or anyone would refuse to accept anything or reject anything makes no sense, you seem to misunderstand me. You aren't just playing, you wouldn't display or convey a tone of that manner if you didn't subtly or overtly mean it, don't patronize me. That being said, it is still a good time to me, no matter how you react in your own space, it is all well and good. It is a waste of time, but sometimes it's nice to waste time this way.

What this all comes down to is a fundamental difference in view. Just as Namdrol explained before:

Namdrol wrote:This is primarily a result of Tsongkhapa's over-intellectualization of Madhyamaka and his inability to differentiate between Candrakirti's POV and Bhavaviveka's, and his ideological commitment to the superiority of Candrakiriti's presentation.

The idea that Candra's presentation is superior to Bhava's is not unique, but what is unique is Tsongkhapa's simulataneous commitment to the language of logic as a tool to explain Madhyamaka, and as a result we see strange formulations such as "Prasangikas" do not refute valid cognizers and so on, when in fact they clearly do. In point of fact, that Prasangikas who do not reject valid cognizers are only the followers of Tsongkhapa. The rest, from Candrakirti, to Jayananda, and so on, do refute them.

Also, Buddhist logic never made significant inroads into Chinese philosophy, so much of this talk about valid cognition and so on would sound foreign to a Chinese Buddhist. But because of the trenchant polemics in India between Buddhists and non-Buddhists, there was much discussion of valid cognition and what entailed, since the whole field of pramana was adopted by the Buddhists defensively.

However, during the time of Nagarjuna there was no well developed school of Buddhist logic, and so we see in texts like Vigrahavyavartani a thorough rejection of the whole notion of valid cognizers since in the end the notion of a valid cognition depends on notions of inherency. So naturally the Chinese were not that interested.

However, in response to non-Buddhsits,Vasubandhu began to articulate the first epistemological responses to non-Buddhist criticism, his disciple,Dignaga, forumulized the foundations and Buddhist pramana, Dharmakirit elaborated it, and the rest is history. Pramana came to be regarded as one of the Panca Vidya, the five sciences with its understandable impact on Tibetan Buddhism.

Of course in Dzogchen, the principle is not the two truths, but simple vidyā and avidyā. By comparison, there is only one truth in Dzogchen teachings, vidyā. The rest, falling under the heading of avidyā (ignorance) is fundamentally false —— for example, in the same way that a jaundiced man sees everything as yellow, those who suffering from the jaundice of ignorance never see things as they truly are.


Where you see appearances and so on and so forth cloudburst, i see avidyā, to give it any more rope than that would be to reify and impute further when it isn't necessary. That doesn't mean I don't eat cake, or walk down the street, but I don't reify these activities the same way you seem to.

cloudburst wrote:
asunthatneversets wrote:Acceptance and rejection presuppose a subject existing in relation to objects which can indeed be accepted or rejected, it is not so,


it certainly is so! I am reading this, are you not writing it? If you disagree, this is nothing but a object of ridicule for clear-thinking people. Yes, yes, conventionally, seeming..... of course, but that's the only subject and object there can be. Just read your Chandrakirti, accept the conventional as advised and watch the clarity of your thinking improve exponentially.


I've never rejected the conventional, I just don't see the use of rolling around in it, creating and reifying constructs which are in truth misnomers. Reifying these designations too thoroughly gives power to the illusion (which in turn binds one to delusion). I don't need the clarity of my thinking to improve, it is like a child building a sand castle. The thinking belongs to no one for I am thought itself, projected onto that which I am not, and apart from the projection there is no me to be found(nor thought to be found)... so striving for the clarity of thought is a futility married to an illusion... the clarity belongs to something else altogether.

....Therefore, from the first instant (ksana) of [the continuum of] mind (citta), the subjective Being (atma-bhava) and all phenomena (sarva-dharma) are present.

From the cathectic-functioning of mentation (cinta) there proceeds the appearance of origination.

Yet no phenomena exists for either ordinary people or for enlightened Saints other than the continuum (santana) of their own mind (citta).

The whole diversity (vicitrata) that exists for the six types [of sentient beings] is just their own internal-contemplation (samadhi).

The mental-continuum (citta-santana) is without boundaries or extension; it is not one thing, nor supported by anything.

Since it has no boundaries, therefore every one of all the infinite realms of existence are one's own body (deha).

In that the infinite realms and the organic creatures [inhabiting those realms] appears as one's body,
it is impossible to define mind and the imprints (vasana) as either one or many.

Everything arises and disappears according to the law of [causally] interdependent co-creation (pratityasamutpada).

And yet, as with a burnt seed, since nothing can arise from nothing, cause and effect cannot actually exist.

Cause and effect, which is fundamental to "Existence" (bhava), is a conceptual discrimination occurring within the essence of Mind-itself, which appears as [both] cause and effect; and yet, since the two [i.e., cause and effect] do not exist as such, creation and destruction [which are dependent on cause and effect] cannot exist either.

Since creation and destruction do not exist, self and other cannot exist; [from whence it follows] since there is no termination (samkrama), [the two extremes of] eternalism and nihilism do not exist either.

Therefore, it is established that the deceptive dualism of Samsara and Nirvana is actually a fiction.

Time (ksana, moment) and locality (sthana, the space or place of phenomena) are indeterminate; temporal duration is a uniquely simultaneous event (sama, unicity), and where the one [i.e., phenomena occupying space] does not occur, the other [i.e., time] does not occur.

Since they are a virtual production (upahita) and not actual (samyak), the vestigial-imprints (vasana) also do not factually exist, and since there then does not exist a sensum (caryavisaya), there can be no substratum (alaya) and no conscious perceiving (vijnapti).

Because there are no boundaries, a focus-of-attention (prabhana) and a locality (sthana), cannot exist. How then can conscious perceiving [i.e., the 'act' of consciousness] arise?

Therefore mind is separate from the alternatives of existence and nonexistence, and is neither one nor many.
In that the Enlightened state of the Blissful Ones is not [objectifiable], the deceit of appearance (abhasa) is like a magical apparition.

In the same way [as Enlightenment is not objectifiable], so also, immaculate Gnosis, and the pure continuum of goodness (kusala) that is the Source of Reality (dharmadhatu), are misconstrued as having an existence, and hence as being objectifiable [i.e., an object separate from consciousness].

But, since there is no such thing as an "absolute place" (Vajra-sthana) the nature of "locality" is all-the-same (sama, a perfect unicity).

And since the Supreme Vajra [i.e., ultimate Being, non-dual Gnosis] per se, [abiding in] the Dimension of Reality, is without boundaries, there can be no "time-moments" (ksana) whatsoever.

With all positive good-qualities (kusala), as the root (mula), no more existent than a reflection, then for certain, worldly knowledge (Jagadjnana) [as the branches] has no reality!....

- Mañjuśrīmitra
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Re: What is the concept of "reality" in Buddhism?

Postby conebeckham » Wed May 09, 2012 11:38 pm

cloudburst wrote:certainly is so! I am reading this, are you not writing it? If you disagree, this is nothing but a object of ridicule for clear-thinking people. Yes, yes, conventionally, seeming..... of course, but that's the only subject and object there can be. Just read your Chandrakirti, accept the conventional as advised and watch the clarity of your thinking improve exponentially.


Right.....accept the conventional as advised by Chandrakirti, as "seeming," at the level of no analysis, the realm of ordinary persons, etc. Don't "impute" any existence, (or nonexistence, for that matter!) or reify conventional phenomena in any way. If one accepts the appearance of things, as appearance, as "seeming," without actually "being," with any sort of ontological status, one has taken the meaning of Chandrakirti to heart.
May any merit generated by on-line discussion
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