Mind versus Self?

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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby futerko » Wed Jan 09, 2013 3:52 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:
futerko wrote:I'll put my money on all 4 - from various perspectives..
Indecision, huh? That doesn't help much either.
:namaste:

lol, no, I'm spread betting!
I think all 4 are valid as a progression, a process rather than as ends in themselves.
we cannot get rid of God because we still believe in grammar - Nietzsche
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Jan 09, 2013 4:13 pm

oushi wrote:You just stated that by choosing meaning, you end up in samsara. I agree. Tell me something about the meaningless.
You end up in samsara. Refer to option two of the tetralema I outlined. It's called nihilism.
:namaste:
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Jan 09, 2013 4:16 pm

futerko wrote:lol, no, I'm spread betting!
I think all 4 are valid as a progression, a process rather than as ends in themselves.
How can grasping to any extreme view (or hypothetical non-view) help one progress? :shrug:
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby futerko » Wed Jan 09, 2013 4:28 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:
futerko wrote:lol, no, I'm spread betting!
I think all 4 are valid as a progression, a process rather than as ends in themselves.
How can grasping to any extreme view (or hypothetical non-view) help one progress? :shrug:

If it were possible to simply not grasp - then it would be easy and we'd all be Buddhas.

There is meaning in realisation. - at first we believe there is some magical answer which will look like a content to thought which we can grasp.
Realisation is meaningless. - then we realise it's the opposite, no graspable content to thought, just letting go.
Realisation is meaningful and meaningless. - then we seen the value in the structure of having no substantial thought content.
Relalisation is neither meaningful nor meaningless. - then we let it dissolve.

rinse and repeat...There is meaning in realisation - we let meaning creep back in, this time with a lighter grasp...
and with subsequent cycles increasing sublety and less grasping.
we cannot get rid of God because we still believe in grammar - Nietzsche
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby oushi » Wed Jan 09, 2013 4:35 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:
oushi wrote:You just stated that by choosing meaning, you end up in samsara. I agree. Tell me something about the meaningless.
You end up in samsara. Refer to option two of the tetralema I outlined. It's called nihilism.
:namaste:

This is a statement, not a proof.
Words point to meaning, that is their role. What does "meaningless" point to? Therefore it can be seen that it doesn't have a position, because even "meaningless", is meaningless. Very simple :smile:

Realisation is meaningless. - then we realise

Excuse me, but this is a paradox. When you "realise", you grasp meaning, don't you? :smile:
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Jan 09, 2013 4:39 pm

futerko wrote:If it were possible to simply not grasp - then it would be easy and we'd all be Buddhas.

There is meaning in realisation. - at first we believe there is some magical answer which will look like a content to thought which we can grasp.
Realisation is meaningless. - then we realise it's the opposite, no graspable content to thought, just letting go.
Realisation is meaningful and meaningless. - then we seen the value in the structure of having no substantial thought content.
Relalisation is neither meaningful nor meaningless. - then we let it dissolve.

rinse and repeat...There is meaning in realisation - we let meaning creep back in, this time with a lighter grasp...
and with subsequent cycles increasing sublety and less grasping.
Rinse and repeat = samsara. No siree, Middle Way all the way to liberation!

Yes, it is not simple to not grasp, but everything we are doing is designed to get us beyond the dualism of attachment and aversion. Otherwise it just becomes another fetter (view) and I've got a closet full of those!
:namaste:
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby futerko » Wed Jan 09, 2013 5:05 pm

oushi wrote:
Realisation is meaningless. - then we realise

Excuse me, but this is a paradox. When you "realise", you grasp meaning, don't you? :smile:
That's why it's only stage 2 in the theory I just made up. :tongue:

gregkavarnos wrote:Rinse and repeat=samsata. No siree, Middle Way all the way to liberation!

Yes, it is not simple to not grasp, but everything we are doing is designed to get us beyond the dualism of attachment and aversion. Otherwise it just becomes another fetter (view) and I've got a closet full of those!
:namaste:
I wasn't suggesting this was an intentional process, more like an inevitable cycle due to the nature of our current embodiments.
we cannot get rid of God because we still believe in grammar - Nietzsche
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Jan 09, 2013 5:41 pm

oushi wrote:This is a statement, not a proof.
You didn't ask for a proof.
Words point to meaning, that is their role. What does "meaningless" point to?
What does "nonsense" point to? What does "empty" point to, ad nauseum...
Therefore it can be seen that it doesn't have a position, because even "meaningless", is meaningless. Very simple :smile:
Dude, people can reify anything. Even emptiness. Actually reifying emptiness is quite a common flaw for Dharma practitioners. So be careful. Very careful! ;)
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby oushi » Wed Jan 09, 2013 5:50 pm

You didn't ask for a proof.

Nor for statement. Still, opinions are always welcome.
What does "nonsense" point to?

Answering with question to a question won't bring any good result.
Dude, people can reify anything. Even emptiness. Actually reifying emptiness is quite a common flaw for Dharma practitioners. So be careful. Very careful!

As long as you see meaning in something, there is indeed a risk of reification. Can you reify something meaningless? :smile:

"Therefore, Subhuti, the minds of all disciples should be purified of all thoughts that relate to seeing, hearing, tasting, smelling, touching, and discriminating. They should use their minds spontaneously and naturally, without being constrained by preconceived notions arising from the senses."

Bold mine, text by Buddha.
:namaste:
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Jan 09, 2013 6:24 pm

Answering with question to a question won't bring any good result.
This is a very weak attempt to ignore my point.
As long as you see meaning in something, there is indeed a risk of reification
What does meaninglessness mean? It means...

I guess that is the pitfall of signifiers.

But whenever you posit an opposite to something, for example: meaning vs meaningless then you have created a dualism. Even when you do not want to. You propose meaninglessness as being beyond dualism. Bzzzzzzt! Wrong! All you have done is present the opposite to meaning.
Another example: is cold the absence of heat or an independent condition? One could also posit that heat is the absence of cold. Or that heat is an indpendent condition. What ever you do it is a trap. A trap of language? A trap of cognition? Are these two seperate anyway? Obviously not. So as long as we are trapped in ignorance and dualism (mistaken cognition) whatever we propose will just perpetuate the cycle.
oushi wrote:As long as you see meaning in something, there is indeed a risk of reification. Can you reify something meaningless? :smile:
Realisation is meaninglessness. What is realisation? It is... Oh look, I just reified meaninglessness! Gee, wasn't that hard!?
:namaste:
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby oushi » Wed Jan 09, 2013 6:40 pm

What does meaninglessness mean? It means...

Precisely. A way out...

But whenever you posit an opposite to something, for example: meaning vs meaningless then you have created a dualism.

No doubt. That's the nature of language. Very limited... by meaning.
You propose meaninglessness as being beyond dualism. Bzzzzzzt! Wrong! All you have done is present the opposite to meaning.

Yes, a finger that directly point to the moon. Meaninglessness as a concept is just a concept, but very unusual one that changes its meaning when applied. Like swinging doors. What is meaninglessness from the perspective devoid of meaning?
"Therefore, Subhuti, disciples should leave behind all distinctions of phenomena and awaken the thought of the attainment of Supreme Enlightenment. A disciple should do this by not allowing their mind to depend upon ideas evoked by the world of the senses - by not allowing their mind to depend upon ideas stirred by sounds, odors, flavors, sensory touch, or any other qualities."
Those ideas, what are they beside meaning? People do not attach to sound of world, but to their meaning.

So as long as we are trapped in ignorance and dualism

Where is the duality when there is no meaning?

What is realisation? It is... Oh look, I just reified meaninglessness!

I see no meaning in this, nor do I feel a need to reify it.
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Jan 09, 2013 7:13 pm

Those ideas, what are they beside meaning? People do not attach to sound of world, but to their meaning.
And as soon as you propose a word you set up a meaning. The word meaningless has a meaning.
Where is the duality when there is no meaning?
Meaning-meaningless. Full-empty. Sense-nonsense. Useful-useless.
:namaste:
PS I am now fed up and finished with this meaningless word game that I have been having with you.
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby oushi » Wed Jan 09, 2013 7:22 pm

Ok. It was nice talking with you. :smile:
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Jan 09, 2013 9:49 pm

Oh, just one detail, that may be important: in Sanskrit ignorance is avidya, lack of undersanding; while vidya is right knowledge or clarity.
So you go from not having something to having something. ;)
:namaste:
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby anjali » Wed Jan 09, 2013 10:52 pm

futerko wrote:If it were possible to simply not grasp - then it would be easy and we'd all be Buddhas.

gregkavarnos wrote: Yes, it is not simple to not grasp, but everything we are doing is designed to get us beyond the dualism of attachment and aversion.

Apparently, the problem is that it is simple. In fact, it's too simple and we don't believe it! A long time ago I read a quote by an advaita sage that made a lasting impression on me, "A day will dawn when you will laugh at all your past efforts." :rolling:

Here is the full quote, "There is no greater mystery than this, that we keep seeking reality though in fact we are reality. We think that there is something hiding reality and that this must be destroyed before reality is gained. How ridiculous! A day will dawn when you will laugh at all your past efforts. That which will be the day you laugh is also here and now."

:cheers:
  • The object of the game is to go on playing it. --John Von Neumann
  • All activities are like the games children play. If started, they can never be finished. They are only completed once you let them be, like castles made of sand. --Khenpo Nyoshul Rinpoche
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Jan 09, 2013 11:39 pm

From the start
the sky is pure;

looking and looking,
you only block up the view.

Stopping up the sky
like that,

flawed in his innermost thought,
the fool is uncomprehending.

Saraha Tantric Treasures: Three Collections of Verse from Buddhist India
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby Karma Dorje » Thu Jan 10, 2013 12:10 am

anjali wrote:Apparently, the problem is that it is simple. In fact, it's too simple and we don't believe it! A long time ago I read a quote by an advaita sage that made a lasting impression on me, "A day will dawn when you will laugh at all your past efforts." :rolling:

Here is the full quote, "There is no greater mystery than this, that we keep seeking reality though in fact we are reality. We think that there is something hiding reality and that this must be destroyed before reality is gained. How ridiculous! A day will dawn when you will laugh at all your past efforts. That which will be the day you laugh is also here and now."

:cheers:


Yes, and those that are looking for a buddha outside Buddhism need look no further than this sage, Shri Ramana Maharshi. Anyone with the slightest experience of mahamudra or dzogchen understanding will immediately recognize what he is pointing to time and again.
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby greentara » Thu Jan 10, 2013 7:29 am

Anjali, You're quoting Ramana Maharshi. He is often spoken of as an Advaitic sage but his devotion was just as pronounced. Certainly his love for Arunachala was total.
"What did it profit thee to choose me from all those struggling in samsara. Ocean of grace even to think of thee puts me to shame'
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby oushi » Thu Jan 10, 2013 8:21 am

gregkavarnos wrote:Oh, just one detail, that may be important: in Sanskrit ignorance is avidya, lack of undersanding; while vidya is right knowledge or clarity.
So you go from not having something to having something. ;)
:namaste:

Do I? Or do You?
How much knowledge does an infant have? How much clarity, and how much Buddha nature?
A small quote here:
Bodhidharma, Wake-up Sermon, Red Pine translation wrote:If you understand anything, you don’t understand. Only when you understand nothing is it true understanding. Understanding is neither understanding nor not understanding.
The sutras say, "Not to let go of wisdom is stupidity." When the mind doesn't exist, understanding and not understanding are both true.

:namaste:
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Re: Mind versus Self?

Postby wayland » Thu Jan 10, 2013 9:56 am

SittingSilent wrote:However, as a student of Buddhism I am learning that the self doesn't exist, something which I am willing to accept,
Ethan

Hi Ethan,
Much gets said about what exists/doesn't exist in Buddhism, most of which is a complete waste of time in my opinion. Self is very simple to witness and anyone who pays some attention will see that it is a process, a response. When we are offended, we recoil in anger. When desirous objects appear to us, we want them, and so on. It's not intellectual, the same responses can be seen in insects etc.

In Buddhism we speak of a self-grasping mind or clinging and this is exactly what we do. We take ownership of this response/process. It is 'ours' and we define ourselves by it. We think that we are a certain kind of person who likes/dislikes certain things etc.

In meditation this grasping, this tightness loosens. We start to relinquish our ownership of the whole thing. We come to see it as 'not-self' - nothing to do with us - something we can let go of.

This makes me think of the Zen koan "What becomes of the fist when the hand is unclenched?"

If the simplicity of this is not seen we may find ourselves asking where the fist went. Did it exist, or didn't it exist? Does it both exist and not exist? Does it neither exist nor not exist... or am I just asking idiotic self-defeating questions? :smile:
:namaste:
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