Question on the two bodies

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Question on the two bodies

Postby sangyey » Mon May 10, 2010 6:36 pm

Hi,

I just have a question regarding the truth body and the form body.

Do these two bodies in any way relate to conventional/ultimate reality or conventional/ultimate Bodhicitta?

Whereas the form body relates to conventional reality and is the result of conventional Bodhicitta and the truth Body relates to ultimate reality and is the result of wisdom or ultimate Bodhicitta?

Thank you in advance for deepening my understanding.
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Re: Question on the two bodies

Postby narraboth » Thu Jun 10, 2010 11:27 am

I don't think they can be too separated...
Base on conventional bodhicitta you accumulate two merits, and base on merits buddha has his form body (rupakaya).
However, when you generated conventional bodhicitta (wish bodhicitta), you wish to attain two kayas, including truth body (dharmakaya).

I personally think rupakaya can't be separated from dharmakaya, they are two sides of one thing; one is appearance, one is essence.

sangyey wrote:Hi,

I just have a question regarding the truth body and the form body.

Do these two bodies in any way relate to conventional/ultimate reality or conventional/ultimate Bodhicitta?

Whereas the form body relates to conventional reality and is the result of conventional Bodhicitta and the truth Body relates to ultimate reality and is the result of wisdom or ultimate Bodhicitta?

Thank you in advance for deepening my understanding.
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Re: Question on the two bodies

Postby White Lotus » Thu Jun 10, 2010 5:01 pm

:namaste: i would speculatively agree with narraboth, where ultimately i dont know anything... i can still speculate.

the truth body is no different from the form body, they are both one. both are Mind. the Mind is real and can be seen as substantial as well as insubstantial. as the basic ground of all, but also the individual appearances. this Mind is not empty, mind rests beyond emptiness. it is a presence. truth body and form body are both mind. one (truth body) in its fundamental state. form body as an individual appearance.

the initial buddhist enlightenment is to see the emptiness of ones own nature, and that this emptiness is the truth body and form body. one needs to break through emptiness to the Mind beyond. it will then be seen that ultimately their emptiness rests upon Mind.

i guess thats how i see it.

best wishes, White Lotus. x
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: Question on the two bodies

Postby sukhamanveti » Fri Jun 11, 2010 3:41 am

sangyey wrote:Hi,

I just have a question regarding the truth body and the form body.

Do these two bodies in any way relate to conventional/ultimate reality or conventional/ultimate Bodhicitta?

Whereas the form body relates to conventional reality and is the result of conventional Bodhicitta and the truth Body relates to ultimate reality and is the result of wisdom or ultimate Bodhicitta?

Thank you in advance for deepening my understanding.


Hi, sangyey.

My understanding of the bodies is mostly from a Gelugpa perspective. I am no expert on the subject, but this is what I do know.

It is true that the bodies are basically one (in several respects), but conventionally they may be distinguished. The bodies relate to the conventional and the ultimate in two ways.

First, the Buddhist practitioner must gain the "two accumulations" or "two collections" (tshogs gnyis) by practicing the paramitas in order to obtain the two bodies. It is the accumulation of merit that ultimately yields the rupakaya and the accumulation of the wisdom that perceives shunyata, that ultimately yields the dharmakaya. Thus, ultimate bodhicitta, perceiving ultimate truth, is the true source of the dharmakaya, whereas conventional bodhicitta, the resolve to become a buddha for the sake of all beings, is a basis of the rupakaya, although it aims at the attainment of both bodies, as narraboth mentions above.

Second, just as the rupakaya may be subdivided into the sambhogakaya and the nirmanakya, so the dharmakaya may be subdivided into the jnanakaya and the svabhavikakaya. The jnanakaya is a buddha's omniscient, nondual awareness. The svabhavikakaya has two aspects: the absence of inherent existence (shunyata) of a buddha's omniscient, nondual mindstream and the absence of moral and cognitive obscurations in a buddha's mindstream. Viewed in the former aspect (shunyata), the dharmakaya is ultimate truth, and the rupakaya are conventional truths.

This is how the bodies are sometimes presented in relation to conventional and ultimate.
namo bhagavate śākyamunaye tathāgatāyārhate samyaksaṁbuddhāya | namaḥ sarvabuddhabodhisattvebhyaḥ ||

"Bodhisattva-mahāsattvas love all beings in the world equally, as if each were their only child..." Buddhāvataṃsakamahāvaipulya Sūtra
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Re: Question on the two bodies

Postby White Lotus » Tue Jun 15, 2010 5:39 pm

:namaste: Noble Sukhamanveti.

nice and clear, but really this sums it all up...

you said:
ultimate bodhicitta, perceiving ultimate truth, is the true source of the dharmakaya


however i would add that to perceive ultimate truth would be useless were not the mundane and ordinary perceived with it (and as it). to me Tathata is not the perception of underlying emptiness or mind. it is the perception and engagement with the normal as well as the special. when the oneness or sameness of mind is perceived there is still ongoing perception of phenomena (sort of), and this is crucial since it is when perception is totally normal, totally mundane that tathata is perceived.

at least thats my take on it. describing reality (phenomena) and the absolute can be hellishly difficult. sometimes i wonder whether anything at all is perceived, but i dont know. there is a lot of not knowing in the fundamental. but surely the ultimate is the phenomenal ordinariness of daily forms and phenomena. that is the true sublimity. perception of emptiness or subsequent perception of Mind are a source of dharmakaya. the source of dharmakaya, but the fundamental should not detract from mundane perception. infact the fundamental is no different from mundane perception.

the sensations that you receive as you type at this computer are the fundamental. totally mundane and unspecial and yet 'the' fundamental.

best wishes, White Lotus.

in the mundane the absolute.
the absolute is the mundane.
all one flavour. taste and see.
within no different from the
sensations without.
sensations of this computer
completely the buddha nature
revealed.
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: Question on the two bodies

Postby mudra » Wed Jun 16, 2010 12:28 am

Perceiving/experiencing conventional reality correctly is not the same as living our mundane "conventional" existence. It is perceiving/experiencing the illusion like quality of phenomena.

To echo Sukhamanveti, with perhaps slight variants, from a Gelug perspective:

"Conventional Bodhicitta" as the aspect of the spirit of enlightenment which is the transformation of the (main) mind's mode of awareness into a spontaneous, irreversible wish to free all beings from suffering and lead them to the highest enlightenment is logically the cause of Nirmana and Sambhogakayas.

Along with this, to complete bodhicitta, is the aspiration to develop one's wisdom potential to it's fullest, i.e. Buddhahood entailing total, constant unobscured experience of absolute truth (aka omniscience) that goes along with this transformed mind, and as result "Ultimate Bodhicitta" (superior wisdom understanding emptiness) develops.

This is not to be confused with the conventional nature of the mind, clarity and awareness, which evolves (rgyas-‘gyur-gyi rigs) which leads to the attainment of the Jnana-dharmakaya aka omniscient mind of the Buddha.
The Svabhavakaya reflects the unchanging aspect mind (rang-bzhin gnas-rigs), the permanent phenomena we call emptiness in English or Shunyata.

After Aryahood (3rd Path/dharsanamarga) when shunyata is perceived directly during meditation sessions, the Arya perceives the illusion like quality of things more and more clearly between sessions. Progressively the subtle obscurations are overcome. When the union of method (conventional bodhicitta) and wisdom (ultimate bodhicitta) is achieved to perfection, then Buddhahood is achieved. A Buddha's 'kayas' are fully integrated, there is no need for a Buddha to 'switch into conventional mode' in order to communicate, interact etc.

In non-Gelug traditions the mind is viewed differently from what I understand (and please anyone who can help me out here, I have very limited knowledge of other schools): the clarity and awareness of the mind is seen as unchanging yet is the cause for the Jnanadharmakaya.
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Re: Question on the two bodies

Postby White Lotus » Wed Jun 16, 2010 5:10 pm

:namaste: Noble Mudra,

Perceiving/experiencing conventional reality correctly is not the same as living our mundane "conventional" existence. It is perceiving/experiencing the illusion like quality of phenomena.


there is no difference. at the beginning is normal mind, at the end is normal mind. one returns to where one began. then one realizes that the buddha was teaching not a thing, and that there is absolutely nothing to attain, other than what we started out with... Normal Mind.

love, White Lotus.

if we attain nothing, we attain everything.
if we attain everything, we attain nothing.
starting out with nothing we return empty handed.
theres nothing to attain except this normality
we already have. you may lose something along
the way... ego. it doesnt matter a bit whether
you do or dont. 'this is it'. just as it is. so.
your mind is alreay perfect.
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: Question on the two bodies

Postby dave » Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:10 pm

sangyey wrote:Hi,

I just have a question regarding the truth body and the form body.

Do these two bodies in any way relate to conventional/ultimate reality or conventional/ultimate Bodhicitta?

Whereas the form body relates to conventional reality and is the result of conventional Bodhicitta and the truth Body relates to ultimate reality and is the result of wisdom or ultimate Bodhicitta?

Thank you in advance for deepening my understanding.


Hi

Buddha-the-enlightened-state has three perspectives called the three kayas. The first, the Dharmakaya, relates to the perspective of ‘nature’, the nature of Buddha-the-enlightened-state. Then there are the two form kayas, the Sambhogakaya and the Nirmanakaya.
Their origin has two perspectives: that of bodhicitta and that of aspirations; bodhicitta that was generated while still on the path to Buddha-the-enlightened-state and aspirations that were cultivated also while on the path, aspirations as to accomplishing the welfare of others. These two, bodhicitta and aspirations to benefit others, figuratively speaking ‘produce’ the two form kayas that manifest once Buddha-the-enlightened-state has been attained, the capacity to manifest them happens once Buddha-the-enlightened-state has been attained.
These are the various aspects or perspectives of the word ‘kaya’.
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Re: Question on the two bodies

Postby mudra » Thu Jun 17, 2010 12:42 am

White Lotus wrote::namaste: Noble Mudra,

Perceiving/experiencing conventional reality correctly is not the same as living our mundane "conventional" existence. It is perceiving/experiencing the illusion like quality of phenomena.


there is no difference. at the beginning is normal mind, at the end is normal mind. one returns to where one began. then one realizes that the buddha was teaching not a thing, and that there is absolutely nothing to attain, other than what we started out with... Normal Mind.

love, White Lotus.

if we attain nothing, we attain everything.
if we attain everything, we attain nothing.
starting out with nothing we return empty handed.
theres nothing to attain except this normality
we already have. you may lose something along
the way... ego. it doesnt matter a bit whether
you do or dont. 'this is it'. just as it is. so.
your mind is alreay perfect.


Dear White Lotus - depends on your perspective and the context. Seeing/experiencing conventional reality directly is not the same as the ordinary, samsaric mode of being. We are perhaps talking from different philosophical perspectives/systems.

M
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Re: Question on the two bodies

Postby mudra » Thu Jun 17, 2010 12:43 am

dave wrote:
sangyey wrote:Hi,

I just have a question regarding the truth body and the form body.

Do these two bodies in any way relate to conventional/ultimate reality or conventional/ultimate Bodhicitta?

Whereas the form body relates to conventional reality and is the result of conventional Bodhicitta and the truth Body relates to ultimate reality and is the result of wisdom or ultimate Bodhicitta?

Thank you in advance for deepening my understanding.


Hi

Buddha-the-enlightened-state has three perspectives called the three kayas. The first, the Dharmakaya, relates to the perspective of ‘nature’, the nature of Buddha-the-enlightened-state. Then there are the two form kayas, the Sambhogakaya and the Nirmanakaya.
Their origin has two perspectives: that of bodhicitta and that of aspirations; bodhicitta that was generated while still on the path to Buddha-the-enlightened-state and aspirations that were cultivated also while on the path, aspirations as to accomplishing the welfare of others. These two, bodhicitta and aspirations to benefit others, figuratively speaking ‘produce’ the two form kayas that manifest once Buddha-the-enlightened-state has been attained, the capacity to manifest them happens once Buddha-the-enlightened-state has been attained.
These are the various aspects or perspectives of the word ‘kaya’.



Hi Dave - the Jnana-dharmakaya and the Svabhavakaya are actually aspects of the Dharmakaya.
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Re: Question on the two bodies

Postby dave » Thu Jun 17, 2010 8:19 am

mudra wrote:
dave wrote:
sangyey wrote:Hi,

I just have a question regarding the truth body and the form body.

Do these two bodies in any way relate to conventional/ultimate reality or conventional/ultimate Bodhicitta?

Whereas the form body relates to conventional reality and is the result of conventional Bodhicitta and the truth Body relates to ultimate reality and is the result of wisdom or ultimate Bodhicitta?

Thank you in advance for deepening my understanding.


Hi

Buddha-the-enlightened-state has three perspectives called the three kayas. The first, the Dharmakaya, relates to the perspective of ‘nature’, the nature of Buddha-the-enlightened-state. Then there are the two form kayas, the Sambhogakaya and the Nirmanakaya.
Their origin has two perspectives: that of bodhicitta and that of aspirations; bodhicitta that was generated while still on the path to Buddha-the-enlightened-state and aspirations that were cultivated also while on the path, aspirations as to accomplishing the welfare of others. These two, bodhicitta and aspirations to benefit others, figuratively speaking ‘produce’ the two form kayas that manifest once Buddha-the-enlightened-state has been attained, the capacity to manifest them happens once Buddha-the-enlightened-state has been attained.
These are the various aspects or perspectives of the word ‘kaya’.



Hi Dave - the Jnana-dharmakaya and the Svabhavakaya are actually aspects of the Dharmakaya.



Hi mudra

Yes, I did read your post.
Still, even it is categorized into two aspects, the Dharmakaya is the Dharmakaya. You don't end up with two half eggs, what is called the Dharmakaya.
Sangye asked about the truth-body, that means the Dharmakaya, and the form-body, that is the Nirmanakaya, and the Sambhogakaya.
The explanation I have provided is simple and without going too much into details, which can cause more confusion especially for those who are not familiar with the topic.
I hope my explanation was beneficial.

Dave
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Re: Question on the two bodies

Postby dave » Thu Jun 17, 2010 8:56 am

mudra wrote:
dave wrote:
sangyey wrote:Hi,

I just have a question regarding the truth body and the form body.

Do these two bodies in any way relate to conventional/ultimate reality or conventional/ultimate Bodhicitta?

Whereas the form body relates to conventional reality and is the result of conventional Bodhicitta and the truth Body relates to ultimate reality and is the result of wisdom or ultimate Bodhicitta?

Thank you in advance for deepening my understanding.






Hi sangye

To both in my understanding.
Without ultimate reality the truth body = Dharmakaya, the 2 form bodies can not arise.
Without relative bodhicitta no ultimate bodhicitta can be realized.
It is not so, that there is a hierarchy in action, between Nirmanakya and Sambhogakaya, both arise if the Dharmakaya is realised.
But without accumulation merit on the relaitive level, the Dharmakaya can not be realized (both relative and absolute bodhicitta). Without relative bodhicitta (two kind of accumulation of merit) no chance to realize absolute bodhicitta.

-->It is on the basis of the Dharmakaya that the two form kayas appear. The connection between the three is that one, namely the Dharmakaya, is the origin of the other two.

-->All the deeds that the two form kayas perform for the sake of benefiting others appear because of the Dharmakaya; the Dharmakaya is the condition what makes these deeds possible. Without the Dharmakaya, one can conclude, the deeds of a Sambhogakaya or a Nirmanakaya could not happen.
Hi Dave - the Jnana-dharmakaya and the Svabhavakaya are actually aspects of the Dharmakaya.

Hi mudra
About your question of the two aspects of the Dharmakaya:

>The Dharmakaya is a balanced state in that the two perspectives of purity have been actualized. The two perspectives of purity are: naturally present purity, i.e. the true nature present in all beings, then there is the second perspective, that of having eradicated all types of obscuration.<
source: (Mahayanasutralamkara)
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