Bliss in Mahayana

General forum on Mahayana.

Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby ground » Sun Nov 07, 2010 10:13 pm

spiritnoname wrote:
TMingyur wrote:The aim is to get rid of the afflictions to be able to benefit others and one methode to get rid of the afflictions temporarily is calm abiding and the jhanas.


Tmingyur, jhana is not to temporarily get rid of the afflictions, you need to rid at least temporarily get rid of the afflictions to enter jhana. People with afflictions cannot enter jhana.


Then either you misunderstood me or I took the wrong term.
Actually jhana is to get rid of the afflictions typical of the desire realm. In this sense mind is "purified". A condition conducive for insight is thusly generated. Of course if there are predominant heavy faults like hatred these have to be temporarily "pushed to the background" through application of antidots in order to be able to concentrate.

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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby Individual » Sun Nov 07, 2010 10:24 pm

TMingyur wrote:Then either you misunderstood me or I took the wrong term.
Actually jhana is to get rid of the afflictions typical of the desire realm.

The first 4 jhanas, yes. The second 4 (infinite space, consciousness, nothingness, and neither-perception-nor-nonperception) lead out of the form realm also.

And the jhana specifically discovered and taught by the Buddha, the ninth, "cessation of perception and feeling" leads to cessation\beyond. :)
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby Individual » Sun Nov 07, 2010 10:26 pm

Also, you could say you need to be free of afflictions to practice jhana, but if you were already free of afflictions, for what purpose do you practice jhana?

And you could say jhana helps overcome the hindrances (attachment to desire, and subtle attachment to form and mind), but if you were already attached to these things, how can concentration be possible?

It is beyond logic. So it's not worth fighting over. Just do jhana or don't. If you're not doing jhana, arguing and explaining helps nobody. :)
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby spiritnoname » Sun Nov 07, 2010 10:45 pm

How can you get into jhana without having first dealt with the mental afflictions?

You cannot enter jhana when you have in the mind Passion, Aggression, Ignorance, Pride, Jealousy. People with these afflictions can barely sit still, much less enter jhana. Before they can enter jhana they have to apply the antidotes, different exertions to free the mind from afflictions so it can enter jhana.


After you have jhana you are less likely to have afflictions, you may have completely cut out the root, but when afflictions are present in the mind, you cannot enter jhana.
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby remm » Sun Nov 07, 2010 11:32 pm

spiritnoname wrote:
TMingyur wrote:


Tmingyur, jhana is not to temporarily get rid of the afflictions, you need to rid at least temporarily get rid of the afflictions to enter jhana. People with afflictions cannot enter jhana.


This is not entirely correct. One enters the Dhyanas to remove afflictions. As one first begins to enter the first dhyana, he/she will start to slowly remove 81 view delusions and as one progresses further to the fourth dhyana, that person will start to remove more coarse afflictions (klesa).

These innate defilements are categorized in sequence with the fundamental division of existence into the realm of desire (kamadhatu), the first, second, third, and fourth absorptions of the form realms (rupadhatu), and the realms of infinite space (akasanantyayatana), infinite consciousness (vijnananantyayatana), nothingness (akimcanyayatana), and peak of existence (bhavagra) of the formless realms (arupyadhatu). In each of these nine realms there are three fundamental categories of defilements, subtle (mrdu), medium(madhya), and coarse (abhimatra). Each one of these fundamental categories is in turn subdivided into subtle, medium, and coarse, yielding a paradigm of nine categories: subtle-subtle, subtle-medium, subtle-coarse, medium-subtle, medium-medium, medium-coarse, coarse-subtle, coarse-medium, coarse-coarse. Therefore, with nine categories of defilements in each of the nine realms of existence there is a total of eighty-one defilements to be removed by the super-mundane path of cultivation in the dhyanas.
- Stairway to Nirvana, a study of the twenty samghas based on the works of Tsong Kha Pa
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby Individual » Mon Nov 08, 2010 12:34 am

You're both right.

One enters jhana to remove afflictions. But if one is a worldling, under the domination of Mara, it's as if you are just his puppet, his toy, his property; just a mindless tool. Mara does not allow for (much less encourage!) jhana.

The act of practicing jhana is itself a victory over Mara, albeit a small one. But it depends on what you mean by "small."

In that small victory, all of the hindrances must be overcome.

To sit down, you must:
  • Have your mind set on non-craving (if you were watching television or getting high, no jhana)
  • Not be averse to jhana (if you didn't want to practice jhana, you couldn't)
  • Not be too lazy to concentrate, for sake of jhana
  • Not be too worried to practice jhana
  • Not doubt your own capacity for jhana

So, in a certain light, the first time you practice jhana is a HUGE victory! :)

After standing up, in your daily life you will still be subject to the hindrances, but in that infinitesimally small fraction of a second, you realized Buddhahood!!! :)

There's a famous Zen teacher who taught this... Forget his name...
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby Individual » Mon Nov 08, 2010 12:39 am

Dogen!

The primary concept underlying Dōgen's Zen practice is "oneness of practice-enlightenment" (修證一如 shushō-ittō / shushō-ichinyo). In fact, this concept is considered so fundamental to Dōgen's variety of Zen—and, consequently, to the Sōtō school as a whole—that it formed the basis for the work Shushō-gi (修證儀), which was compiled in 1890 by Takiya Takushū (滝谷卓洲) of Eihei-ji and Azegami Baisen (畔上楳仙) of Sōji-ji as an introductory and prescriptive abstract of Dōgen's massive work, the Shōbōgenzō ("Treasury of the Eye of the True Dharma").

For Dōgen, the practice of zazen and the experience of enlightenment were one and the same. This point was succinctly stressed by Dōgen in the Fukan Zazengi, the first text that he composed upon his return to Japan from China: "To practice the Way singleheartedly is, in itself, enlightenment. There is no gap between practice and enlightenment or zazen and daily life"[15]. Earlier in the same text, the basis of this identity is explained in more detail:

Zazen is not "step-by-step meditation". Rather it is simply the easy and pleasant practice of a Buddha, the realization of the Buddha's Wisdom. The Truth appears, there being no delusion. If you understand this, you are completely free, like a dragon that has obtained water or a tiger that reclines on a mountain. The supreme Law will then appear of itself, and you will be free of weariness and confusion.

Not just Zazen. This applies to all correct meditation and dharma.

If you are a Tibetan Buddhist, and you're correctly dancing, swinging your bells and blowing your whistles (lol, just kidding, I don't know what you do!! :lol:), if you're doing that correctly, that's Buddhahood right there. :D
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby Huifeng » Mon Nov 08, 2010 4:14 am

spiritnoname wrote:
Huifeng wrote:One does not need to be attached to the bliss to develop meditation.
There are several methods of reaching meditative states, one way is to make the distinction of: 1. developing attachment for the next higher state - this is attachment; but the other is, 2. developing non-attachment for the present state - which basically leads to the attainment of the higher state.
The bodhisattva - or anyone - can use the second type of method, without attachment. Of course, one can always use the first kind, too, and just remember - very important - to drop the attachment at the end. Of course, this last point is easier said than done.
So, in short, no need to develop attachment to meditation in order to reach higher states of meditation.


I'm not sure if I agree with what you said. Without right resolve and effort in meditation people become lax and enter false concentrations lacking awareness, it might be very comfortable but it is not jhana where the awareness because like a steady lamp, steady enough to read by. False concentration is more or less falling asleep.

You could be right Huifeng, but when I had done that in the past I didn't enter proper concentrations, now with directed effort I enter proper concentrations and they are very different.


Sure, but "resolve" and "effort" do not equal attachment, which is what you were saying above.
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby Huifeng » Mon Nov 08, 2010 4:16 am

spiritnoname wrote:Ngawang Drolma, it is definitely a sweeping generalization. I find it is one based in reality though, and it seems unethical not to point it out when I see so many people mislead. Zen only made it into America because of "Kung Fu", I will probably never study it in the slightest of seriousness though.

I actually have a pretty interesting copy of the Surangama sutra though, I haven't really read it yet, but flipped through the pages and it seems it's worth reading.

Anywho, when I find respectable Zen teachers and see that they are benefiting their students I'll change my view.


So, on one hand you don't really know much about Zen, but you've already decided that you don't want to much to do with it, but you still want to make sweeping statements about how wrong it is.

In this case, I suggest it may be better to refrain from making statements about it, until you are quite familiar with it. If you never become familiar, then best to just remain silent, perhaps.
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby Huifeng » Mon Nov 08, 2010 4:18 am

spiritnoname wrote:How can you get into jhana without having first dealt with the mental afflictions?

You cannot enter jhana when you have in the mind Passion, Aggression, Ignorance, Pride, Jealousy. People with these afflictions can barely sit still, much less enter jhana. Before they can enter jhana they have to apply the antidotes, different exertions to free the mind from afflictions so it can enter jhana.


After you have jhana you are less likely to have afflictions, you may have completely cut out the root, but when afflictions are present in the mind, you cannot enter jhana.


Actually, the only afflictions that hinder dhyana are the five hindrances: sensual craving, aversion, mental dullness, agitation and doubt.

Afflictions such as ignorance and pride are only abandoned with the paths, not through dhyana - even temporarily.
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby spiritnoname » Mon Nov 08, 2010 4:36 am

Huifeng, I really don't need to know everything about the various types of Satanism to criticize, in fact I don't need to know anything about the teachings in my case because I have seen the results, dismantled their shrines even.

But say I did hear some of their teachings, hear about hedonism or how harming others is just a matter of survival of the fittest, I do not need to hear the entirety of Satanism to criticize it.

:coffee:

There's this thing called inferential logic.

When Zen starts doing good things in the world I'll change my mind about it.
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby ground » Mon Nov 08, 2010 5:30 am

remm wrote:
These innate defilements are categorized in sequence with the fundamental division of existence into the realm of desire (kamadhatu), ...
- Stairway to Nirvana, a study of the twenty samghas based on the works of Tsong Kha Pa

Yes this is the scholary presentation of the subject. The concentrations as a means to get temporarily rid of the defilements (I called it "afflictions") corresponding to the lower realms corresponding to the respective lower states of mind.


Individual wrote:The act of practicing jhana is itself a victory over Mara, albeit a small one.

I like this. However in this sense every "right effort" is a victory over Mara.

Individual wrote:After standing up, in your daily life you will still be subject to the hindrances, but in that infinitesimally small fraction of a second, you realized Buddhahood!!! :)

Actually that is not true. It is not true since you still have the defilements/afflictions of the corresponding concentration attained.
And even if it were true that you temporarily got rid of all afflictions then you still would not have realized temporary buddhahood in the Mahayana understanding of the term "buddhahood".

But the sort of insight you may have through attaining a concentration is: Experience the differences of states of mind and the getting the confirmation that mind can be "purified". And if discerning wisdom is not abandoned - which is what the Buddha recommends if one wants to attain liberation - directly experiencing that these states are not liberation but still samsara.

Kind regards
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby spiritnoname » Mon Nov 08, 2010 8:17 pm

TMingyur wrote:
remm wrote:
These innate defilements are categorized in sequence with the fundamental division of existence into the realm of desire (kamadhatu), ...
- Stairway to Nirvana, a study of the twenty samghas based on the works of Tsong Kha Pa

Yes this is the scholary presentation of the subject. The concentrations as a means to get temporarily rid of the defilements (I called it "afflictions") corresponding to the lower realms corresponding to the respective lower states of mind.


Individual wrote:The act of practicing jhana is itself a victory over Mara, albeit a small one.

I like this. However in this sense every "right effort" is a victory over Mara.

Individual wrote:After standing up, in your daily life you will still be subject to the hindrances, but in that infinitesimally small fraction of a second, you realized Buddhahood!!! :)

Actually that is not true. It is not true since you still have the defilements/afflictions of the corresponding concentration attained.
And even if it were true that you temporarily got rid of all afflictions then you still would not have realized temporary buddhahood in the Mahayana understanding of the term "buddhahood".

But the sort of insight you may have through attaining a concentration is: Experience the differences of states of mind and the getting the confirmation that mind can be "purified". And if discerning wisdom is not abandoned - which is what the Buddha recommends if one wants to attain liberation - directly experiencing that these states are not liberation but still samsara.

Kind regards



Remm, I have that passage, it's page 78, I don't get what you're even trying to say with it, he's not talking about the afflictions I listed, he's talking about the grades of defilements that are perversions of self view.
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby Hillman » Tue Nov 09, 2010 1:07 am

spiritnoname wrote:When Zen starts doing good things in the world I'll change my mind about it.


Have you heard of Robert Aitken Roshi & the Buddhist Peace Fellowship?
http://www.bpf.org/about-us/founders

Have you heard of Thich Nhat Hanh (Martin Luther King Jr Nominated him for the Nobel Peace Prize in 1967)
http://www.plumvillage.org/
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby spiritnoname » Tue Nov 09, 2010 4:01 am

Hillman, I looked at the pages, I don't see what they're actually doing except linking their site to other sites.

Where's my liberated beings? That's what I really want from Zen.
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby plwk » Tue Nov 09, 2010 6:07 am

I see Enjitsu has another transformation body here and elsewhere... :rolling:
DFTT! DFTT! :tongue:
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby Hillman » Tue Nov 09, 2010 8:31 am

spiritnoname wrote:Hillman, I looked at the pages, I don't see what they're actually doing except linking their site to other sites.

Where's my liberated beings? That's what I really want from Zen.


You've seriously never heard of Thich Nhat Hanh??
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby spiritnoname » Tue Nov 09, 2010 8:45 pm

Yes, I have, he wrote a poem right?

Is that somehow a resultant from Zen teaching?
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Re: Bliss in Mahayana

Postby Hillman » Wed Nov 10, 2010 12:59 am

spiritnoname wrote:Yes, I have, he wrote a poem right?

Is that somehow a resultant from Zen teaching?



Okay,

Peace be with you then.

:buddha2:
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