“When reasoning searches to whether the chariot [or self] intrinsically exists, it is not found in any of the seven ways. This is the case in terms of both of the two truths. But when reason fails to find it those seven ways, does this refute the chariot [or self]? How could it? Reasoning that analyses whether things intrinsically exist does not establish the assertion of the chariot; rather, leaving reasoned analysis aside, it is established by a mere unimpaired, ordinary, conventional—i.e., worldly—consciousness. Therefore, the way a chariot is posited is that it is established as existing imputedly; it is imputed in dependence upon its parts.”
-Lam Rim Chen Mo eng v03 pg. 283 tib pg. 725
“Analyzing [appearances presented to conventional consciousnesses] often with reasoning that examines whether they intrinsically exist, you develop a strong certainty that intrinsic existence is refuted. Then, when you see an appearance arise, it appears like an illusion. There is no separate way to set up an illusion-like emptiness.”
-Lam Rim Chen Mo eng v03 pg. 300 tib pg. 742
“When living beings experience or see a phenomenon, they do not apprehend it as being set up by the power of the mind to which it appears. Rather, they apprehend it as existing just as it appears, i.e., as existing in an essentially objective manner. This is how intrinsic existence is superimposed. The presence of such a nature in the object is what is meant by essence, intrinsic nature, and autonomous existence. Thus, if such a nature were present, this would contradict reliance upon other causes and conditions. If this were not a contradiction, then it would be impossible to hold that an already existing pot does not need to be produced again from causes and conditions.”
-Lam Rim Chen Mo eng v03 pg. 316-317 tib pg. 759
“The earlier citation of Candrakirti’s Commentary on the “Four Hundred Stanzas” continues:
Therefore, since in this Madhyamaka system to be a dependent-arising is to lack autonomy, lacking autonomy is what emptiness means; emptiness does not mean that nothing exists.”
-Lam Rim Chen Mo eng v03 pg. 317-318 tib pg. 760
In this same vein, if there is no-self or I, how can we say that sentient beings are indeed beings if they lack any inherent nature? What then is the reason for showing compassion to what is ultimate illusory or the bodhisattva ideal of working toward the liberation of all beings? What beings could possibly be liberated aside from numerous "somethings" (no-selfs?) under delusion that there are an entity or person from identification with the skandhas?
Johnny Dangerous wrote:In the process, you will likely discover all that is there is only a combination of parts, which you call "self". No such thing can be found no matter how hard we look, anything that we try to get to the bottom of, we will only find a parts, and parts of those parts etc. Just like in the first thing Konchog quoted above..oops!
Johnny Dangerous wrote:Try this, The Perfection of Wisdom sutras, Lankavatara Sutra. These are what helped me gain a little better grasp of some these questions..Lankavatara makes my head hurt, but if I read it a few times over it starts to make sense;)
Also, you say that no matter how hard we look we cannot find such a Self, then what do Hindu sages discover? It seems that Hinduism, Taoism, and even mystical Christianity and Islam understands the notion of a true self or soul, even if it is formless and immaterial, or better yet transcends all qualities. Buddhism seems to be unique in denying such a concept. Is this just a case of the limited use of language and concepts to describe the same "thing" or experience or state of being? It seems strange for to think that the descriptions of an ultimate reality by the sages of all worlds traditions (compare Lao Tzu and Huang Po to Meister Eckhart or Ibn Arabi or Adi Shankara) are so strikingly similar and uniform, yet only Buddhists sages experience truth/enlightenment.
The Yogacara Buddhist similarly maintains that consciousness creates its own forms. But, according to him, because the perceived and perception are identical, there is no perceived object at all. The so-called outer world is merely a flux of cognitions, it is not real. He is firmly committed to a doctrine of illusion. The reality of consciousness from his point of view is established by proving the unreality of the universe.
"All this consists of the act of consciousness alone", says Vasubandhu, "because unreal entities appear, just as a man with defective vision sees unreal hair or a moon, etc."
He points to dreams as examples of purely subjective constructs which appear to be objective realities. The apparent reality dreams possess is not derived from any concrete, objective world, but merely from the idea of objectivity. While the Yogacara does not say that an idea has, for example, spatial attributes, it does have a form manifesting them. While he agrees with the Saiva idealist that appearances have no independent existence apart from their appearing to consciousness,
he maintains that for this reason they are unreal. The creativity of consciousness consists in its diversification in many modes having apparent externality; it is not a creation of objects.
While the Kashmiri Saivite agrees that the world is pure consciousness alone, he maintains that it is such because it is a real creation of consciousness. The effect is essentially identical with the cause and shares in its reality. Matter and the entire universe are absolutely real, as 'congealed' (sty ana) or 'contracted' (samkucita) forms of consciousness. "This God of consciousness", writes Ksemaraja, "generates the universe and its form is a condensation of His own essence (rasa).''' By boiling sugarcane juice it condenses to form treacle, brown sugar and candy which retains its sweetness. Similarly, consciousness abides unchanged even though it assumes the concrete material form of the five gross elements.The same reality thus abides equally in gross and subtle forms. Consequently no object is totally insentient. Even stones bear a trace (vasana) of consciousness, although it is not clearly apparent because it is not associated with the vital breath (prana) and other components of a psycho-physical organism. Somananda goes so far as to affirm that physical objects, far from being insentient, can only exist insofar as they are aware of themselves as existing. The jar performs its function because it knows itself to be its agent. Indeed, all things are pervaded by consciousness and at one with it and hence share in its omniscience. Thus, Siva, Who perceives Himself in the form of physical objects, is the one ultimate reality.
Vidyaraja wrote:Who or what is aware or knows that this is a truth?
Vidyaraja wrote:It seems strange for to think that the descriptions of an ultimate reality by the sages of all worlds traditions (compare Lao Tzu and Huang Po to Meister Eckhart or Ibn Arabi or Adi Shankara) are so strikingly similar and uniform, yet only Buddhists sages experience truth/enlightenment.