Rainbow Body Misconception

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Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Enochian » Wed Apr 13, 2011 8:28 pm

Rainbow body occurs whenever a physical human gains Buddhahood on PHYSICAL EARTH (as opposed to in the bardo, in various heavens etc.)

That person's mind becomes the dharmakaya
That person's physical body becomes a Sambhogakāya

The problem with sutra (including proper ZEN), is that one cannot achieve omniscient Buddhahood on Earth with Sutra, according to its own admission. (Unless one puts in a shit load of work over countless lifetimes and is a reborn 9th ground Bodhisattva).

But Sutra does NOT deny the importance of the 3 kayas (also known as omniscient Buddhahood).

If you deny the importance of the "rainbow body", then what you are actually saying is that the rainbow body is NOT a manifestation of Trikaya, which is a different argument altogether. And if you do take up this argument, then you have to tell me what IS the proper manifestation of omniscient Buddahood and the 3 kayas on physical Earth by a physical human.
There is an ever-present freedom from grasping the mind.

Mind being defined as the thing always on the Three Times.
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Astus » Wed Apr 13, 2011 9:35 pm

I haven't heard that the so called common Mahayana schools admitted they're incapable of producing buddhas. But if you have references for that please show them.

My question in that topic was about the meaning of rainbow body. In your post you just seem to take it as something so obvious that it needs no explanation is if there were no other concepts of buddhahood anywhere else in Buddhism.

As a side note, Samten Gyaltsen Karmay in "The Great Perfection" (p. 190ff) points out that the idea of the dissolution of the body, a concept attested from the 11th century on in Tibet, derives from the reinterpretation of the teaching of nirvana without residue while the rainbow body itself can be connected to tantric views of body and certain Bön beliefs.
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T51n2076, p461b24-26)
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Josef » Wed Apr 13, 2011 9:48 pm

Enochian wrote:
That person's mind becomes the dharmakaya
That person's physical body becomes a Sambhogakāya


The mind and body of one who achieves rainbow body dont really become anything.
They manifest their actual qualities of the kayas and elements.
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Enochian » Wed Apr 13, 2011 9:50 pm

Astus wrote:I haven't heard that the so called common Mahayana schools admitted they're incapable of producing buddhas. But if you have references for that please show them.


Very hard to achieve Buddhahood on physical Earth using "common Mahayana".

You basically have to spend a shit load of time becoming a ninth stage Bodhisattva on various planes of existence and then purposely take birth on physical Earth, which is an unnecessary step at that point.


Astus wrote:My question in that topic was about the meaning of rainbow body. In your post you just seem to take it as something so obvious that it needs no explanation is if there were no other concepts of buddhahood anywhere else in Buddhism.


I think you missed my entire point. The "meaning" of rainbow body is that some human attained Buddhahood on PHYSICAL EARTH (as opposed to bardo, heavens etc.) and is displaying the 3 kayas.
There is an ever-present freedom from grasping the mind.

Mind being defined as the thing always on the Three Times.
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Astus » Wed Apr 13, 2011 10:48 pm

Enochian,

No other Buddhist tradition holds the idea that those who become buddhas on this physical earth or any other physical earth (or did you mean Earth the planet - for if you did, well, that is a very much modern Western concept not known in Buddhism until recently) display rainbow body. On the other hand, even non-Vajrayana schools teach buddhahood in this life.
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T51n2076, p461b24-26)
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Enochian » Thu Apr 14, 2011 12:35 am

Astus wrote:On the other hand, even non-Vajrayana schools teach buddhahood in this life.



Which non-Vajrayana school teaches that the COMMON Mahayana Trikaya with the ability to emanate 1 billion emanations in 1 billion world systems can be obtained in this life?
There is an ever-present freedom from grasping the mind.

Mind being defined as the thing always on the Three Times.
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Josef » Thu Apr 14, 2011 1:24 am

Enochian wrote:
I think you missed my entire point. The "meaning" of rainbow body is that some human attained Buddhahood on PHYSICAL EARTH (as opposed to bardo, heavens etc.) and is displaying the 3 kayas.

In what way do you mean displaying the three kayas?
Rainbow body achievers have no physical body. Where are their nirmanakaya emanations?
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Pema Rigdzin » Thu Apr 14, 2011 7:29 am

According to Vajrayana, no one has ever achieved Buddhahood any place on Earth or any place else, nor will they ever. If one is to say it's attained anywhere, it's Akanistha.
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Pema Rigdzin » Thu Apr 14, 2011 7:44 am

Nangwa wrote:Rainbow body achievers have no physical body. Where are their nirmanakaya emanations?


I'm not agreeing with the OP, but what you've said depends on what you mean by "rainbow body." It's true that the physical body is reduced to particles in the ultimate fruition of tregchod, but a special feature of the ultimate fruition of togal is that one does not lose the physical body in this way. Even still, those who attain this level of realization are definitely still said to emanate nirmanakayas in other forms as well. Take Vimalamitra, for example, and some of the masters that were considered to be his nirmanakaya emanations such as the late Khenpo Ngag'ga and Penor Rinpoche, or those emanations still with us such as the Ven. Yangthang Tulku Rinpoche.
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Astus » Thu Apr 14, 2011 8:49 am

Enochian wrote:Which non-Vajrayana school teaches that the COMMON Mahayana Trikaya with the ability to emanate 1 billion emanations in 1 billion world systems can be obtained in this life?


A bodhisattva on the fourth stage can "manifest a billion bodies, each surrounded by a billion enlightening beings" (Flower Ornament Scripture, p. 733). Also, the view you represent of buddhahood is not necessarily the same everybody else has.

"What are the hundred thousand myriad Transformation bodies of the Buddha? If you are free of any thought of the ten thousand dharmas, then your nature is basically like emptiness, but in one thought of calculation, transformation occurs. Evil thoughts are transformed into hell-beings and good thoughts into heavenly beings. Viciousness is transformed into dragons and snakes, and compassion into Bodhisattvas. Wisdom is transformed into the upper realms, and delusion into the lower realms. The transformations of the self-nature are extremely many, and yet the confused person, unawakened to that truth, continually gives rise to evil and walks evil paths. Turn a single thought back to goodness, and wisdom is produced. That is the Transformation-body of the Buddha within your self-nature.
Good Knowing Advisors, the Dharma body of the Buddha is basically complete. To see your own nature in every thought is the Reward body of the Buddha. When the Reward body thinks and calculates, it is the Transformation Body of the Buddha. Awaken and cultivate by your own efforts the merit and virtue of your self-nature. That is truly taking refuge."
(Platform Sutra, ch. 6)

But this is not discussing the importance and meaning of rainbow body but questioning the teachings of other Buddhist schools. And I don't see the relevance of that.
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T51n2076, p461b24-26)
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby heart » Thu Apr 14, 2011 9:43 am

I think there are all kinds of misconceptions going on in this thread. The teaching of the three kayas exist in common Mahayana, Dharmakaya and Rupakaya is taught also in the Theravada tradition. Rainbow body is mainly taught in Dzogchen context, if someone don't want to believe in this or consider it unimportant is not a problem. It is only a problem if you are a Dzogchen practitioner and I know a few of those that also doubt in the rainbow body. I think we all have to realize that the schedule of the nine yanas with Ati-yoga as the highest and fastest teaching will not be accepted by all Buddhists and to try to convince them of this is just ridiculous and also lacks merit.

/magnus
"To reject practice by saying, 'it is conceptual!' is the path of fools. A tendency of the inexperienced and something to be avoided."
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Josef » Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:29 pm

Pema Rigdzin wrote:
Nangwa wrote:Rainbow body achievers have no physical body. Where are their nirmanakaya emanations?


I'm not agreeing with the OP, but what you've said depends on what you mean by "rainbow body." It's true that the physical body is reduced to particles in the ultimate fruition of tregchod, but a special feature of the ultimate fruition of togal is that one does not lose the physical body in this way. Even still, those who attain this level of realization are definitely still said to emanate nirmanakayas in other forms as well. Take Vimalamitra, for example, and some of the masters that were considered to be his nirmanakaya emanations such as the late Khenpo Ngag'ga and Penor Rinpoche, or those emanations still with us such as the Ven. Yangthang Tulku Rinpoche.


Hi Pema,
I should have been more clear. My questions in this thread have been rhetorical in an attempt to parse what the op is trying to get at.
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby LastLegend » Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:38 pm

After a Bodhisattva breaks through 41 levels of illusion, that Bodhisattva will become Buddha, and this Buddha will pick a place for example Earth to teach, and that's what Sakyamuni did. So far there is no human who has become Buddha on Earth. In other words, what human can achieve is Arhat (level of attainment) and an Arhat with vows to help other sentient beings is known as a Bodhisattva, and this Bodhisattva will continue the work to become Buddha.

Hui Neng is a Bodhisattva that came to do work on earth by teaching, probably a Bodhisattva who has broke through one level of illusion and known as One Dharma Body Bodhisattva.
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Enochian » Thu Apr 14, 2011 3:17 pm

LastLegend wrote:So far there is no human who has become Buddha on Earth. In other words, what human can achieve is Arhat (level of attainment) and an Arhat with vows to help other sentient beings is known as a Bodhisattva, and this Bodhisattva will continue the work to become Buddha.



This is 100% wrong. You are greatly confused. Or maybe you should indicate these are your own personal heretical views.
There is an ever-present freedom from grasping the mind.

Mind being defined as the thing always on the Three Times.
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Malcolm » Thu Apr 14, 2011 3:18 pm

heart wrote:I think there are all kinds of misconceptions going on in this thread.


Yup.


It is only a problem if you are a Dzogchen practitioner and I know a few of those that also doubt in the rainbow body.


The body of light aka rainbow body is simply the body reverting back to the five lights of wisdom. The sign of this is that at death the body shrinks to a very small size.

I think we all have to realize that the schedule of the nine yanas with Ati-yoga as the highest and fastest teaching will not be accepted by all Buddhists and to try to convince them of this is just ridiculous and also lacks merit.

/magnus


Yup, though it is ok to mention that this is what we think. Some people instantly become interested, other people are indifferent. We think that people who become interested in Dzogchen have very fortunate karma as opposed to those who are disinterested in it. But it is not our job to condition others.

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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Malcolm » Thu Apr 14, 2011 3:18 pm

Enochian wrote:
LastLegend wrote:So far there is no human who has become Buddha on Earth. In other words, what human can achieve is Arhat (level of attainment) and an Arhat with vows to help other sentient beings is known as a Bodhisattva, and this Bodhisattva will continue the work to become Buddha.



This is 100% wrong. You are greatly confused. Or maybe you should indicate these are your own personal heretical views.



This is one hundred percent a standard Mahāyāna view, apart from the confusion about what an arhat is.

I must say though, at this point people need to start giving citations. Otherwise it is just an opinion fest.

N
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http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

Though there are infinite liberating gateways of Dharma,
there are none not included in the dimension of the knowledge of the Great Perfection.

-- Buddha Samantabhadri
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Enochian » Thu Apr 14, 2011 3:23 pm

Namdrol,

You agree with the part where he said "So far there is no human who has become Buddha on Earth"???

Or are you simply saying that is the view of sutrayana?
There is an ever-present freedom from grasping the mind.

Mind being defined as the thing always on the Three Times.
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby LastLegend » Thu Apr 14, 2011 3:27 pm

Namdrol wrote:
Enochian wrote:
LastLegend wrote:So far there is no human who has become Buddha on Earth. In other words, what human can achieve is Arhat (level of attainment) and an Arhat with vows to help other sentient beings is known as a Bodhisattva, and this Bodhisattva will continue the work to become Buddha.



This is 100% wrong. You are greatly confused. Or maybe you should indicate these are your own personal heretical views.



This is one hundred percent a standard Mahāyāna view, apart from the confusion about what an arhat is.

I must say though, at this point people need to start giving citations. Otherwise it is just an opinion fest.

N


Opinion to those who cannot use rational observation, if you can use rational observation then why need citations for? If you really want citations, you need to get into my Mind. So I cannot give citations but by rational observation one can derive the answer for him/herself. Reading is no good if you are unable to explain to people in many different ways. And what people write is not always accurate, so rely on rational observation. This is my view.

What is your idea about what an Arhat is?
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Malcolm » Thu Apr 14, 2011 3:28 pm

Enochian wrote:Namdrol,

You agree with the part where he said "So far there is no human who has become Buddha on Earth"???

Or are you simply saying that is the view of sutrayana?



I am saying this is the view of sutrayāna cf. Lanka-avatyara sutra, to paraphrase "The real Buddha attains full awakening in Akanistha, an emanated one attains Buddhahood here".
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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

Though there are infinite liberating gateways of Dharma,
there are none not included in the dimension of the knowledge of the Great Perfection.

-- Buddha Samantabhadri
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Re: Rainbow Body Misconception

Postby Enochian » Thu Apr 14, 2011 3:28 pm

Namdrol wrote:
heart wrote:I think there are all kinds of misconceptions going on in this thread.


Yup.


N



Then please clear them up :twothumbsup: :bow:
Last edited by Enochian on Thu Apr 14, 2011 3:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
There is an ever-present freedom from grasping the mind.

Mind being defined as the thing always on the Three Times.
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