emptiness simple

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Re: emptiness simple

Postby Aemilius » Mon Sep 20, 2010 1:33 pm

5heaps wrote:
"Man is a word" does not imply that trolls exist because "troll" is also word, it is an idiotic statement.
if things are words then not only do trolls necessarily exists since "troll" exists, but a man can become a troll as soon as you just use "troll" instead of "man".

as Jeffrey Hopkins says, when Shakespeare said a rose by any other name would still be a rose, he did not mean, a rose by any other name would still be called rose.


Yes, but language is a means of communication, when I call a person "troll" it has a specific meaning, "troll " does not just replace "man", the speaker wants to convey something with it.
A person or a rose is not a constant unchanging thing. If Jeffrey Hopkins was a member of Hell's Angels and he was called there with an other name, like Razz for example, that Razz would not be the same person!
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby 5heaps » Tue Sep 21, 2010 7:46 am

Aemilius wrote:called there with an other name, like Razz for example, that Razz would not be the same person!

but words are empty also. the meaning of "Razz" may very well be identical to "Jeffrey Hopkins", even though the sounds of the letters are different.

what then does it mean to say they are different people? are the sounds of the words the person? is the meaning of the word(s) the person? or is it the point that persons themselves are only cognizable through reliance upon imputation through thought and/or name (and this does not imply that the person IS the thought/word), even though they seem substantial and not dependent in this way.


it might be easier to switch to an easier example such as coiled rope vs snake, or pen vs chew toy, or door vs surfboard, etc.
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby Aemilius » Tue Sep 21, 2010 1:52 pm

5heaps wrote:
Aemilius wrote:called there with an other name, like Razz for example, that Razz would not be the same person!

but words are empty also. the meaning of "Razz" may very well be identical to "Jeffrey Hopkins", even though the sounds of the letters are different.

what then does it mean to say they are different people? are the sounds of the words the person? is the meaning of the word(s) the person? or is it the point that persons themselves are only cognizable through reliance upon imputation through thought and/or name (and this does not imply that the person IS the thought/word), even though they seem substantial and not dependent in this way.


it might be easier to switch to an easier example such as coiled rope vs snake, or pen vs chew toy, or door vs surfboard, etc.


It means that "Jeffrey Hopkins" is quite a different person for his mother, than for his colleagues, or for his (imaginary) friends in the Hell's Angels, etc... A person has different manifest aspects in different situations and with regard to different perceivers. This ís often reflected in the habit of giving the person different names and nicknames. A person is momentary, what appears depends on the situation.
Neither is the name constant, when his mother says "Jeffrey", it has a diffrent pronounciation, different tone, different colour, than when his students say it. It changes from day to day, it changes due to season, due to age, due to health, and so on... even if the letters are same the name is not. Letters are also not same because the style of writing and the fonts change.
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby 5heaps » Tue Sep 21, 2010 5:12 pm

Aemilius wrote:A person has different manifest aspects in different situations and with regard to different perceivers. This ís often reflected in the habit of giving the person different names and nicknames.

persons are abstractions on mental consciousness.

if you cant see their mental consciousness, can you ever really see the person? its more fair to say that there are 2 objects - 1 being the person, the other being the quasi-person, which is really just an image of that person to you.

therefore you could say there are many quasi-persons.. but you have to say there is just 1 person.

so, to put this into perspective of your opening post - there is no quasi-person separate from the imputation/identity of one. the quasi person is imputedly constructed and known contrary to its solid appearance and obvious applicability to persons. this is true of most thoughts and mental objects (ie. emotions, words, etc)
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby Aemilius » Wed Sep 22, 2010 1:18 pm

5heaps wrote:
Aemilius wrote:A person has different manifest aspects in different situations and with regard to different perceivers. This ís often reflected in the habit of giving the person different names and nicknames.

persons are abstractions on mental consciousness.

if you cant see their mental consciousness, can you ever really see the person? its more fair to say that there are 2 objects - 1 being the person, the other being the quasi-person, which is really just an image of that person to you.

therefore you could say there are many quasi-persons.. but you have to say there is just 1 person.

so, to put this into perspective of your opening post - there is no quasi-person separate from the imputation/identity of one. the quasi person is imputedly constructed and known contrary to its solid appearance and obvious applicability to persons. this is true of most thoughts and mental objects (ie. emotions, words, etc)


It has been said that the three marks of conditioned existence describe the same thing, i.e. impermanence, selflessness and nature of being suffering are at the bottom same thing. The buddhist view is that person is impermanent, without findable self and experientally unsatisfactory. What you call "quasi-person" is the true person that is characterized by the three marks (lakshana).
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby 5heaps » Wed Sep 22, 2010 10:00 pm

Aemilius wrote:What you call "quasi-person" is the true person that is characterized by the three marks (lakshana).

the most obvious evidence that this is not the case is that words are sound generalities, which are unchanging negations, imputed onto a series of instances of sound (there is some debate whether they extend to sight also).

another piece of evidence is that quasi-persons are conceptual. concepts are unreal and cannot perform functions, yet actual persons are real just as the mind is real. in meditation a meditator tries to destroy the innate nonconceptual ignorance which is at the root of both mistaken nonconceptual appearance and mistaken conceptual objects. the meditator does not merely restrict themselves to wrong concepts, since far more is required to remove mental afflictions.


persons are a particular kind of mental factor, which is constantly changing. they are not findable ultimately, but this does not mean they do not exist. when you become a Buddha you will be a person and you will be unmistaken with regard to reality.

persons resemble categories/universals/generalities/qualities in that they are both known by way of imputation and not self-sufficiently known (despite their self-sufficient appearance), but persons are not qualities. images of persons (ie. quasi persons) are qualities/universals/etc, not persons.
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby Aemilius » Thu Sep 23, 2010 1:32 pm

I wish to go back a little bit, I see you here as hankering after the hindu atman, when you claim that "there is just 1 person", that is not the buddhist view, we don't need to accept any separate "quasi-person", the person is always the person.
"Image of the person" would be the mental object when we remember the person when he or she is not present, and is only a mental object.

5heaps wrote:
Aemilius wrote:A person has different manifest aspects in different situations and with regard to different perceivers. This ís often reflected in the habit of giving the person different names and nicknames.

persons are abstractions on mental consciousness.

if you cant see their mental consciousness, can you ever really see the person? its more fair to say that there are 2 objects - 1 being the person, the other being the quasi-person, which is really just an image of that person to you.

therefore you could say there are many quasi-persons.. but you have to say there is just 1 person.

so, to put this into perspective of your opening post - there is no quasi-person separate from the imputation/identity of one. the quasi person is imputedly constructed and known contrary to its solid appearance and obvious applicability to persons. this is true of most thoughts and mental objects (ie. emotions, words, etc)
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby 5heaps » Thu Sep 23, 2010 5:18 pm

Aemilius wrote:"Image of the person" would be the mental object when we remember the person when he or she is not present, and is only a mental object.

likewise, when the person is in front of you you dont have a capacity to really know them at all. all you can see is superficial outer form and deductions about them (which are almost certainly very mistaken). therefore what is appearing as the person is an internal image (a general category, a word) imputed on their physical form, their sound, their smell, a deduction about them, etc.

so there is this thing which looks like the person aka the word, which looks like its external and self-sufficient and not just imputed by thought. then there is the actual person, which is their mind. the fact that there is a real functioning person which collects karma does not imply that this person or mind is unchanging, has some sort of essence, or is truly existing.
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby Aemilius » Fri Sep 24, 2010 8:48 am

5heaps wrote:
Aemilius wrote:"Image of the person" would be the mental object when we remember the person when he or she is not present, and is only a mental object.

likewise, when the person is in front of you you dont have a capacity to really know them at all. all you can see is superficial outer form and deductions about them (which are almost certainly very mistaken). therefore what is appearing as the person is an internal image (a general category, a word) imputed on their physical form, their sound, their smell, a deduction about them, etc.

so there is this thing which looks like the person aka the word, which looks like its external and self-sufficient and not just imputed by thought. then there is the actual person, which is their mind. the fact that there is a real functioning person which collects karma does not imply that this person or mind is unchanging, has some sort of essence, or is truly existing.


I find it a weird idea that mind would be the "real person"? Is not mind also an imputation? Not more real than the other aggregates? That he has a mind is a deduction.
Physical form is an imputation too. Sound is an imputation. Smell is an imputation. Don't stop halfway in your analysis. On what are they imputed?
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby norman » Fri Sep 24, 2010 11:20 pm

Aemilius wrote:For the second point: It refers to an experience of realizing that habitually we add some "thing" behind each name, each identity. When we cease doing it there is nothing extra anymore! See?


That seems to me to be escaping the main issue.

I'll rephrase my concern:

If there's "no identity (imputed by habit) that is separate from the thing itself", how can you have an identity (imputed by habit) in the first place, since there is none to have it?

What caused the initial imputation-by-habit -- since it is already identical with its object?
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby 5heaps » Sun Sep 26, 2010 9:28 pm

Aemilius wrote:I find it a weird idea that mind would be the "real person"?
in the sense that it is the basis, and that this is not a word
Don't stop halfway in your analysis. On what are they imputed?

you see, that is my point; that words are imputed never enters the sphere of emptiness. its just coarse selflessness - that certain objects, such as persons and concepts, are not self-sufficient, as for example forms and mind are. this does not then mean that form and mind are names and concepts.

i dont want to confuse you so i'll just link you some Dalai Lama and Jeffrey Hopkins unless you find discussion useful:

Dalai Lama on "name only"
Dalai Lama on coarse vs subtle imputation
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby Aemilius » Mon Sep 27, 2010 10:04 am

5heaps wrote:
Aemilius wrote:I find it a weird idea that mind would be the "real person"?
in the sense that it is the basis, and that this is not a word
Don't stop halfway in your analysis. On what are they imputed?

you see, that is my point; that words are imputed never enters the sphere of emptiness. its just coarse selflessness - that certain objects, such as persons and concepts, are not self-sufficient, as for example forms and mind are. this does not then mean that form and mind are names and concepts.

i dont want to confuse you so i'll just link you some Dalai Lama and Jeffrey Hopkins unless you find discussion useful:

Dalai Lama on "name only"
Dalai Lama on coarse vs subtle imputation



Can you perceive mind ? Can you perceive "self-sufficient form" ? I.e. a form that is independent of your mind and its perceptual-process ?
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby Aemilius » Mon Sep 27, 2010 11:44 am

5heaps wrote:
Aemilius wrote:I find it a weird idea that mind would be the "real person"?
in the sense that it is the basis, and that this is not a word
Don't stop halfway in your analysis. On what are they imputed?

you see, that is my point; that words are imputed never enters the sphere of emptiness. its just coarse selflessness - that certain objects, such as persons and concepts, are not self-sufficient, as for example forms and mind are. this does not then mean that form and mind are names and concepts.

i dont want to confuse you so i'll just link you some Dalai Lama and Jeffrey Hopkins unless you find discussion useful:

Dalai Lama on "name only"
Dalai Lama on coarse vs subtle imputation



Form and mind arise dependently and are not self-sufficient, as the 12 links of dependent origination teaches.

Going back to something in the previous discussion: A stone can be perceived by different persons like: a mother, a minerologist, a builder, an artist, a child, an engineer and so on... their perceptions of stone are very different. Are their perceptions of the real stone or of an image of the stone? what would a real stone then be ?
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby Aemilius » Mon Sep 27, 2010 1:15 pm

norman wrote:
Aemilius wrote:For the second point: It refers to an experience of realizing that habitually we add some "thing" behind each name, each identity. When we cease doing it there is nothing extra anymore! See?


That seems to me to be escaping the main issue.

I'll rephrase my concern:

If there's "no identity (imputed by habit) that is separate from the thing itself", how can you have an identity (imputed by habit) in the first place, since there is none to have it?

What caused the initial imputation-by-habit -- since it is already identical with its object?



Images in a dream have identities with nothing behind them, that is one explanation of how it is similar in the daytime world.

Understanding how it all arises requires very subtle & penetrating mindfulness. It is explained in various Dzogchen teachings like the Wishgranting Prayer of Kuntu Zangpo etc.., as well as in the 12 links of Dependent Origination, or Pratitya Samutpada.
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby Aemilius » Mon Sep 27, 2010 1:23 pm

Coming back to the "real person" you posited: Acarya Nagarjuna explains in his Maha Prajna Paramita Shastra that your outer signs (lakshana) have an effect on your inner essence (prakriti) when repeated over a longer period. If you have the outer signs of a monk, a business man, a military person, a beggar, and so on... with time your inner essence will change accordingly, says Acarya Nagarjuna.
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby 5heaps » Mon Sep 27, 2010 1:48 pm

Aemilius wrote:A stone can be perceived by different persons like: a mother, a minerologist, a builder, an artist, a child, an engineer and so on... their perceptions of stone are very different. Are their perceptions of the real stone or of an image of the stone? what would a real stone then be ?

imputation/mental labeling means that both the basis and the imputation are cognized at the same time

in this case, the base (the physical matter, the stone) is seen in common by each of the people, but what is being imputed (the different names/images of "stone") differs from person to person. its the difference between "stone" and the physical object - the difference between the word stone and what the word stone refers to.

here, the scope never reaches down to the level of the physical object. the scope is just that "stone" is imputed. if we enter emptiness, the scope then extends to the physical object itself, and how even physical form itself is "name only". but this doesnt mean that things are merely names.

as Kedrup Je says,
..suppose that after the mind affixes the mere name pot onto a phenomenon we do not avoid engaging in analysis. it is because when we examine it [in this way] we do not find any referent basis onto which that name is posited, that all phenomena are said to be only names.
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby swampflower » Thu Sep 30, 2010 8:08 pm

Aemilius wrote:
swampflower wrote:Ha, Ha - truly there is no "thing" to have an identity. So what is this "identity".

However, this sounds like name and form. Name and form support each other. There can be no name without form and no form without name. So how does this identity exist alone?


It exists by imputation, you project an object and then you perceive it, or like you produce a dream and then you experience the dream.


Is not this the basic problem, that we are projecting an image and then perceiving it?
We must simply (or not so simply) take the object as it is, a non-dual, non-arising illusion.
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby catmoon » Fri Oct 01, 2010 6:04 am

swampflower wrote:

We must simply (or not so simply) take the object as it is, a non-dual, non-arising illusion.



But but

If it doesn't arise, how is it perceived at all?

If it's an illusion then it lacks all reality, and again cannot be perceived.

Wouldn't it be more accurate to say it is an illusion-like arising?
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby Aemilius » Fri Oct 01, 2010 12:22 pm

I think that now you are really making the mistake of postulating two objects...
There is no base that is seen by each of the persons in the example, each of them sees only one stone, which is different in each case.

5heaps wrote:
Aemilius wrote:A stone can be perceived by different persons like: a mother, a minerologist, a builder, an artist, a child, an engineer and so on... their perceptions of stone are very different. Are their perceptions of the real stone or of an image of the stone? what would a real stone then be ?

imputation/mental labeling means that both the basis and the imputation are cognized at the same time

in this case, the base (the physical matter, the stone) is seen in common by each of the people, but what is being imputed (the different names/images of "stone") differs from person to person. its the difference between "stone" and the physical object - the difference between the word stone and what the word stone refers to.

here, the scope never reaches down to the level of the physical object. the scope is just that "stone" is imputed. if we enter emptiness, the scope then extends to the physical object itself, and how even physical form itself is "name only". but this doesnt mean that things are merely names.

as Kedrup Je says,
..suppose that after the mind affixes the mere name pot onto a phenomenon we do not avoid engaging in analysis. it is because when we examine it [in this way] we do not find any referent basis onto which that name is posited, that all phenomena are said to be only names.
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Re: emptiness simple

Postby swampflower » Fri Oct 01, 2010 8:28 pm

catmoon wrote:
swampflower wrote:

We must simply (or not so simply) take the object as it is, a non-dual, non-arising illusion.



But but

If it doesn't arise, how is it perceived at all?

If it's an illusion then it lacks all reality, and again cannot be perceived.

Wouldn't it be more accurate to say it is an illusion-like arising?

Sorry, yes, in the conventional reality, however in Nirvana/Emptiness there is no arising since (I think) this is the essential ground state of existence.
Gautama never gave an exact description of Nirvana, but his closest reply was this.
"There is disciples, a condition, where there is neither earth nor water, neither air nor light, neither limitless space, nor limitless time, neither any kind of being, neither ideation nor non-ideation, neither this world nor that world. There is neither arising nor passing-away, nor dying, neither cause nor effect, neither change nor standstill. "Davis Taylor and Clark Offner, The World's Religions, Norman Anderson, ed. (Grand Rapids: InterVarsity, 1975)
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