eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

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eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby sangamaji » Tue Feb 26, 2013 11:53 pm

dear friends,

why isn't everybody awaken, if samsara exist since eternal times?
Do I have failure in this thought?
I know that time is just a concept, but it didn't help me until know. :shrug:

With loving-kindness
sangamaji
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Re: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby Wayfarer » Wed Feb 27, 2013 12:44 am

As to whether 'the cosmos is eternal, or not', the following passage from the Cula-Malunkyovada Sutta might be helpful:

Then, when it was evening, Ven. Malunkyaputta arose from seclusion and went to the Blessed One. On arrival, having bowed down, he sat to one side. As he was sitting there he said to the Blessed One, "Lord, just now, as I was alone in seclusion, this train of thought arose in my awareness: 'These positions that are undeclared, set aside, discarded by the Blessed One... I don't approve, I don't accept that the Blessed One has not declared them to me. I'll go ask the Blessed One about this matter. If he declares to me that "The cosmos is eternal,"... or that "After death a Tathagata neither exists nor does not exist," then I will live the holy life under him. If he does not declare to me that "The cosmos is eternal,"... or that "After death a Tathagata neither exists nor does not exist," then I will renounce the training and return to the lower life.'

"Lord, if the Blessed One knows that 'The cosmos is eternal,' then may he declare to me that 'The cosmos is eternal.' If he knows that 'The cosmos is not eternal,' then may he declare to me that 'The cosmos is not eternal.' But if he doesn't know or see whether the cosmos is eternal or not eternal, then, in one who is unknowing & unseeing, the straightforward thing is to admit, 'I don't know. I don't see.'... If he doesn't know or see whether after death a Tathagata exists... does not exist... both exists & does not exist... neither exists nor does not exist,' then, in one who is unknowing & unseeing, the straightforward thing is to admit, 'I don't know. I don't see.'"

"Malunkyaputta, did I ever say to you, 'Come, Malunkyaputta, live the holy life under me, and I will declare to you that 'The cosmos is eternal,' or 'The cosmos is not eternal,' or 'The cosmos is finite,' or 'The cosmos is infinite,' or 'The soul & the body are the same,' or 'The soul is one thing and the body another,' or 'After death a Tathagata exists,' or 'After death a Tathagata does not exist,' or 'After death a Tathagata both exists & does not exist,' or 'After death a Tathagata neither exists nor does not exist'?"

"No, lord."

"And did you ever say to me, 'Lord, I will live the holy life under the Blessed One and [in return] he will declare to me that 'The cosmos is eternal,' or 'The cosmos is not eternal,' or 'The cosmos is finite,' or 'The cosmos is infinite,' or 'The soul & the body are the same,' or 'The soul is one thing and the body another,' or 'After death a Tathagata exists,' or 'After death a Tathagata does not exist,' or 'After death a Tathagata both exists & does not exist,' or 'After death a Tathagata neither exists nor does not exist'?"

"No, lord."

"Then that being the case, foolish man, who are you to be claiming grievances/making demands of anyone?


Source

So the question as to whether the cosmos is eternal, or whether it has a beginning or not, is one of those questions that is 'set aside'. The fact of existence is dukka, which is the case, whether the Cosmos has existed eternally, or not. That is the issue which the teaching sets out to understand, not 'whether the cosmos is eternal'.

:anjali:
Learn to do good, refrain from evil, purify the mind ~ this is the teaching of the Buddhas
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Re: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby shel » Wed Feb 27, 2013 1:00 am

I can't speak for anyone else but I'm what you'd call a slow-to-warm-up-babe.
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Re: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby futerko » Wed Feb 27, 2013 1:03 am

If an eternity has already passed, then we still have an eternity to go. In other words we will only ever be half-way there! :shock:
we cannot get rid of God because we still believe in grammar - Nietzsche
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Re: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby kirtu » Wed Feb 27, 2013 3:28 am

sangamaji wrote:dear friends,

why isn't everybody awaken, if samsara exist since eternal times?
Do I have failure in this thought?
I know that time is just a concept, but it didn't help me until know. :shrug:


The actual reason sangamaji is that people do not wish to awaken. They wish to follow delusion and thus get enmired further and further in samsara. Even Buddhists. This was the observation of Buddhadassa Bhikkhu in "The Heartwood of the Bodhi Tree". Other Buddhist teachers have made this observation as well (Khandro Rinpoche for example in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition).

Kirt
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"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche
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Re: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby plwk » Wed Feb 27, 2013 3:38 am

So sangamaji, are you 'awakened'? If not, what are you waiting for? If yes, how do you know?
By the way, what is 'awaken'? Care to define it? :popcorn:
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Re: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby takso » Wed Feb 27, 2013 3:57 am

Samsāra literally means ‘continuous flow’- referring to a repeating cycle of birth, life, death and re-birth. Samsāra is known as the impure part of the dependent nature and one thing that is consistently constant in it is becoming. The becoming process is the main reason for all things or happenings that we observe right here, right now, then or later. When there is a becoming process, there is a change process. When there is a change process, there is a circumstance that shapes up some sort of abilities in the dependent nature. This ability of sorts is also known as ‘energy’ in the scientific terminology. And time is merely an indicator for event; just like length, width and height are indicators for size and volume. So time is a dimension that is created by humans, not born (a non-natural existence) for the task of measurement per se.

In fact, the ‘I’ or ‘you’ or ‘we’ or nāmarūpa (5 skandhas) is purely part of the becoming processes in the dependent nature and the key element of it is energy. Both our mind and body are energy elements that would constantly orientate, transform and evolve in accordance with the subjected conditions. The physical body is shaped up as an appearance due to the existence of matter and the matter is basically concerted, aggregated or concentrated or wrapped energy.

At the same time, the existence of energy would give rise to the mind that in turn conjures up perceptions, conceptions, labels, boundaries, names, activities, shapes, relations, descriptions, stereotyping, beginning, ending, etc. The mind is a necessary pre-requisite for the circumstances of duality or multiplicity. No duality or multiplicity would arise in the non-existence of the mind. This is because there would be no subject to ponder on the other side of the object or matter. As such, we shall be clear by now that mind is the forerunner of all states. These circumstances of duality or multiplicity are merely the end result of various aggregated activities being observed, recorded and replayed by the conscious and the sub-conscious mind under the influence of conditional phenomena.

It is difficult for one to see into the ultimate truth since the dawn of time because the mind is dependent arising. In other words, the presence in the waves of dependent phenomena has clouded the mind from discerning the reality of circumstances i.e. ignorance arises. And we could see that emptiness exists in all conditional phenomena. Without emptiness, the potential movement of the mind from non-enlightenment towards a state of enlightenment would not be possible – that is to say if the mind itself existed inherently. The emptiness of inherent existence of the mind is called the Buddha nature.
~ Ignorance triumphs when wise men do nothing ~
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Re: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby Roland » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:26 pm

Sleeping is more comfortable :zzz:
"Seek truth in meditation, not moldy books. Look in the sky to find the moon, not in the pond."
- Persian proverb
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Re: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby lobster » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:35 pm

I agree with Kirt, most dharma is just a better class of snoozing :zzz:

Why are we so attached to dukkha? Maybe awakening is more responsibility and awareness than most are prepared for . . . Maybe delusion has its advantages, intensity for example . . .
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Re: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:55 pm

The universe is supposed to reset every so often anyway, so there is no permanent state, nor any limit on beings.
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby Andrew108 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:16 pm

sangamaji wrote:dear friends,

why isn't everybody awaken, if samsara exist since eternal times?
Do I have failure in this thought?
I know that time is just a concept, but it didn't help me until know. :shrug:

With loving-kindness
sangamaji

Awakening is too close. People think awakening is far away.
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: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:35 pm

Awakening is not dependent on time, that's why.
"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: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby Seishin » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:02 pm

Greg beat me to it.
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Re: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby alpha » Wed Feb 27, 2013 10:18 pm

Everything is eternal because nothing exists
AOM
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Re: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby sangamaji » Wed Feb 27, 2013 11:36 pm

thank you friends - a lot of good answers until now!
:anjali:
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Re: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby Nighthawk » Thu Feb 28, 2013 1:00 am

Roland wrote:Sleeping is more comfortable :zzz:

+1
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Re: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Thu Feb 28, 2013 9:38 am

alpha wrote:Everything is eternal because nothing exists
Nothing is temporal because everything does not exist. :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: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby kirtu » Thu Feb 28, 2013 9:26 pm

gregkavarnos wrote:
alpha wrote:Everything is eternal because nothing exists
Nothing is temporal because everything does not exist. :shrug:


From the POV of a sentient being, all experiences arise in time.

Kirt
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"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche
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Re: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby Sherab Dorje » Fri Mar 01, 2013 11:46 am

I was just trying (and obviously failing miserably :tongue: ) to show the absurdity of the post "alpha" made by comparing it to the polar opposite position.

But hey, I tend to go with the philosophical position of the Maha Bhranta Adris on the issue of time:


Now these guys ARE eternal!
"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: eternity: why isn't everybody awaken?

Postby greentara » Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:29 pm

Lobster, 'Why are we so attached to dukkha?
I don't think we are attached to Dukkha. I think the 'everyday' mind is naturally extraverted. Only a rare, ripe seeker dives within to examine, look closely at suffering and seek liberation.
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