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PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 6:56 pm 
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Malcolm,

Would you agree that emptiness, in general, refers to nonarising / illusion?


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 7:06 pm 
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Tsongkhapafan wrote:

I'm saying three things:

1. Buddha Shayamuni/Buddha Vajradhara did not teach Dzogchen - his teachings are the Sutras and Tantras. These teachings are a complete system that lead to liberation and enlightenment by removing all mental obscurations.

2. The true nature of phenomena is emptiness, lack of inherent existence. There is no attainment of enlightenment without realising this because grasping at its opposite is the cause of all mental obscurations.

3. There is no path to higher attainments that doesn't depend upon meditating on emptiness. The meaning of emptiness was explained by Buddha and reiterated by Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti.


In an attempt to have a discussion, I will reply.....though I anticipate only some sort of rote NKT-formulaic response:

1.Many dispute that the Tantras were taught by the Buddha. Surely you're aware of this. Vajrayana is not accepted Dharma in many Buddhist traditions. In fact, Malcolm has provided one instance of a "pro-tantra" authority who disputes a given specific instance of this.

2. Ignorance is the root cause of all mental obscurations. If one is attached to emptiness, and sees it as the "opposite" of existence, then one is still mired in the thicket of concepts, however subtly. Although it's fair to say that grasping is certainly part of one's bondage, we can also say there is no "opposite" of emptiness to be grasped in the first place. There is, first of all, merely a mistake. Grasping comes after. It's not a matter of choosing one side or the other, in the end, but a matter of freedom from extremes, and transcendence of conceptual activity.

3. There are many methods of practice where "emptiness" is not the primary object of meditation, and some assert that "higher attainments" can indeed be had by such methods. Certainly, understanding "emptiness" is not a bad thing, we can even say "emptiness" is a factor of many systems, but Dzogchen and Mahamudra, as well as the completion stage practices of Highest Yoga Tantra, do not take "Emptiness" as the primary subject or object, a la Nagarjuna, Chandrakirti, etc.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 7:09 pm 
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:namaste:


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 8:29 pm 
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alpha wrote:

The point is , there is no point of origin since that would entail the extreme of something arising out of itself which would lead to permanence where things would duplicate themselves continuously.


The "point of origin" referred to here, is the arising of appearances.
But appearances are not self-arising.
it is absurd to say, "this appearance has no beginning, no end, no duration"
because appearances do have duration, even though they may be mere hallucinations.
But it is not absurd to say
"there is no beginning, no end, and duration of anything essential..."
(meaning inherently existent, self-arising)
"...from which this appearance arises".
.
.
.

.
.
.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 9:37 pm 
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Shakyamuni never taught Tsongkhapa's "Madhyamaka" :quoteunquote:


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 10:09 pm 
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ConradTree wrote:
Shakyamuni never taught Tsongkhapa's "Madhyamaka" :quoteunquote:

Sure he did. He put it in a time capsule and gave it to some sea serpents to keep at the bottom of the ocean for 1,000 years until Nagarjuna came to pick it up. :juggling: Tshogkhapa just modified it a little.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 11:15 pm 
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ConradTree wrote:
Malcolm,

Would you agree that emptiness, in general, refers to nonarising / illusion?


Emptiness, in Mahāyāna, specifically refers to the absence of the four extremes in phenomena. This is the profound emptiness taught in Mahāyāna according to Gorampa and many other critics of Tsongkhapa, not the mere emptiness of inherent existence which is common which the śravaka systems.

Since phenomena cannot be found by any of the four extremes, they are illusory, and ultimately nonarisen.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 11:19 pm 
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jeeprs wrote:
The other point that occurred to me in relation to this thread, is that it reinforces the fact that Buddhists oughtn't cling to dogma. Every single possible dogmatic view or philosophical position is subject to criticism. That doesn't mean that they don't have their place or their use, but, like anything else, they are transient, not ultimate.

So the lesson is, don't be attached to views.

And - Happy New Year.


Happy new year Jeeprs.

I agree. Maybe I'm oversensitive, but it seems to me like some (most?) people like a good old fashioned sectarian dispute more than anything else.

:anjali:


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 11:24 pm 
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smcj wrote:
ConradTree wrote:
Shakyamuni never taught Tsongkhapa's "Madhyamaka" :quoteunquote:

Sure he did. He put it in a time capsule and gave it to some sea serpents to keep at the bottom of the ocean for 1,000 years until Nagarjuna came to pick it up. :juggling: Tshogkhapa just modified it a little.



I've often wondered about that. I've never had any problem seeing Nagas and the stories that portray them - like Nagarjuna or the Buddha (with Mucalinda) - as metphors being used to illustrate certain ideas. They're often portrayed as protectors of treasure in Buddhist stories. So, you have that principal being applied to the Buddha's life, the Mahayana teachings, and so on. I find that sort of telling and hearing rather fascinating. Precisely what they mean escapes me, though.

But real beings? Geez I dunno. I've never seen one.....


Last edited by IdleChater on Tue Dec 31, 2013 11:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 11:27 pm 
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PadmaVonSamba wrote:
alpha wrote:

The point is , there is no point of origin since that would entail the extreme of something arising out of itself which would lead to permanence where things would duplicate themselves continuously.


The "point of origin" referred to here, is the arising of appearances.
But appearances are not self-arising.
it is absurd to say, "this appearance has no beginning, no end, no duration"
because appearances do have duration, even though they may be mere hallucinations.
But it is not absurd to say
"there is no beginning, no end, and duration of anything essential..."
(meaning inherently existent, self-arising)
"...from which this appearance arises".
\
.


Not to put too fine a point on it, but it is not absurd to say that "this appearance has no beginning, no end, no duration" because, in truth, there is no reality that can be attached to the beginning, end, or duration of the appearance. A discrete appearance, appearing to have beginning, end, and duration, does appear, but no reality or existence for the appearance, the beginning of the appearance, the duration of the appearance, nor the end of that appearance can be posited at all.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 11:34 pm 
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Anders wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
If they are discrete they form a series that leads to perception of time, that is the point.


They don't need to be any more discrete than apparently discrete objects in space like "table", "chair" or "atoms" for that to happen. That is, apparently discrete but not fundamentally so.


One thing that is escaping this discussion is that general buddhist concept of moments (relevant to Indian Buddhism in general from the Kosha) is actually based on the duration of a thought. That duration is something approximating 7 nanoseconds (it takes five nanoseconds for an impulse to travel across a neutron in the brain, longer for neurons in the body). This aside, Sapan's argument is pretty tight:

Because the three times do not arise at once,
the present moment is partless.


This partless moment perishes as soon as its arises. It perishes immediately.

Partless moments are possible precisely because the three times are not substantially established.

Sapan maintains with respect to the question of whether such moments are ultimate or not, "...it is not the ultimate free from proliferation because of being perishable; the ultimate of efficient capability, because in the context of the investigating the empirical conventional authority all delusion and non-delusion depends upon moments."

In the case of the continuum of mind, for example, this is possible because the present moment of mind is neither the same nor different nor different than the previous moment of mind, indeed it is the same with all series [see MMK, chapter on Samskaras]. The series of partless moments will cease as soon as the conditions supporting it cease. Hence, the only way a continuum is actually possible requires partless moments. If moments have parts, there is no way to ensure the continuation of any series, because moments will have parts, and thus causes and their effects will be different, and thus one will have a large series of negative consequences stemming from this.

M

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 31, 2013 11:36 pm 
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tobes wrote:

I agree. Maybe I'm oversensitive, but it seems to me like some (most?) people like a good old fashioned sectarian dispute more than anything else.

:anjali:


Not really, but when pushed to it...

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 01, 2014 12:11 am 
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conebeckham wrote:


Not to put too fine a point on it, but it is not absurd to say that "this appearance has no beginning, no end, no duration" because, in truth, there is no reality that can be attached to the beginning, end, or duration of the appearance. A discrete appearance, appearing to have beginning, end, and duration, does appear, but no reality or existence for the appearance, the beginning of the appearance, the duration of the appearance, nor the end of that appearance can be posited at all.


no beginning, duration or end to the reality.
but your quote is still here.
.
.
.

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Original painting by P.Volker /used by permission.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 01, 2014 12:13 am 
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Malcolm wrote:
In the case of the continuum of mind, for example, this is possible because the present moment of mind is neither the same nor different nor different than the previous moment of mind...

I have heard this expression before, and it has never made sense to me.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 01, 2014 12:19 am 
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PadmaVonSamba wrote:
conebeckham wrote:


Not to put too fine a point on it, but it is not absurd to say that "this appearance has no beginning, no end, no duration" because, in truth, there is no reality that can be attached to the beginning, end, or duration of the appearance. A discrete appearance, appearing to have beginning, end, and duration, does appear, but no reality or existence for the appearance, the beginning of the appearance, the duration of the appearance, nor the end of that appearance can be posited at all.


no beginning, duration or end to the reality.
but your quote is still here.
.
.
.

Sure. I'd be a fool to deny appearances!

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 01, 2014 1:54 am 
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conebeckham wrote:
PadmaVonSamba wrote:
conebeckham wrote:


Not to put too fine a point on it, but it is not absurd to say that "this appearance has no beginning, no end, no duration" because, in truth, there is no reality that can be attached to the beginning, end, or duration of the appearance. A discrete appearance, appearing to have beginning, end, and duration, does appear, but no reality or existence for the appearance, the beginning of the appearance, the duration of the appearance, nor the end of that appearance can be posited at all.


no beginning, duration or end to the reality.
but your quote is still here.
.
.
.

Sure. I'd be a fool to deny appearances!


The fool being to claim they are nothing more than appearances..... on paper.

Rape,incest,slavery, children of the god of abraham etc...only appearances?

Thank full for the paper work.


Last edited by brendan on Wed Jan 01, 2014 2:08 am, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 01, 2014 2:00 am 
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Malcolm wrote:
tobes wrote:

I agree. Maybe I'm oversensitive, but it seems to me like some (most?) people like a good old fashioned sectarian dispute more than anything else.

:anjali:


Not really, but when pushed to it...


Bringing out the "don't be sectarian line" is passive aggressive new ageism.

The enlightened cognitions or final results of the paths Hinayana, Sutrayana, Tantrayana and Dzogchen are clearly marketed as all being different.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 01, 2014 2:09 am 
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brendan wrote:

The fool being to claim they are nothing more than appearances..... on paper.
Rape,incest,slavery, children of the god of abraham etc...only appearances?
thank full for the paper work.


They are appearances.
But who said, 'nothing more?'

The issue of social injustices is a different topic.
Nobody is denying that they occur.
.
.
.

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Original painting by P.Volker /used by permission.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 01, 2014 2:24 am 
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brendan wrote:

Bringing out the "don't be sectarian line" is passive aggressive new ageism.

.


So I guess in your view, HHDL is a passive aggressive new ager?

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How can you not practice the highest Dharma
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 01, 2014 2:52 am 
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Malcolm wrote:
brendan wrote:

Bringing out the "don't be sectarian line" is passive aggressive new ageism.

.


So I guess in your view, HHDL is a passive aggressive new ager?


What a strange comment.

The paths and cognitions of the different yanas are marketed as different.

They clearly are not marketed as being all the same.

Unless one has realised all of the different paths how can there not be sectarianism?....providing it is non violent it seems fine.


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