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Nagarjuna - Dhamma Wheel

Nagarjuna

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
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BlackBird
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Nagarjuna

Postby BlackBird » Sun Nov 08, 2009 8:07 pm

"For a disciple who has conviction in the Teacher's message & lives to penetrate it, what accords with the Dhamma is this:
'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I." -

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tiltbillings
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby tiltbillings » Sun Nov 08, 2009 8:33 pm

Nagarjuna is a bit overblown, but this essay might be of interest:
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby mudra » Sun Nov 08, 2009 11:02 pm


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pink_trike
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby pink_trike » Sun Nov 08, 2009 11:13 pm

Here's an overview of Nagarjuna for those not familiar with his work:

http://www.ecst.csuchico.edu/~dsantina/friend.htm

...and this:

Nagarjuna was an early buddhist thinker whose importance is often overlooked. He was the first writer to systematize key concepts of Buddhism. Although he founded a Mahayana school, the Madhyamika ("Middle Way"), his importance comes from his thought. In his Memorial Verses on the Middle Way, Nagarjuna interprets the Sutra of the Perfection of Wisdom. His central argument elaborates the concepts of Emptiness and impermanence. He shows that each "thing" exists only relation to other "things." Since each thing changes, its relationship to other things changes. These changes reveal that nothing stays the same, nothing is permanent or fixed. Whereas Theravada believed this as the nature of human beings, Nagarjuna made it clear that this applied to all the cosmos. Thus nothing in the cosmos was fixed or permanent other than the existence of the cosmos itself. The metphorical term he used to describe this notion was "Emptiness" or "Void.

I also don't agree that his work is "overblown"...perhaps Tilt's view is reflective of a long-standing overblown rivalry between Theravada and Mahayana.
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.

mudra
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby mudra » Sun Nov 08, 2009 11:15 pm

Blackbird, not sure that this is an introductory but the text is explained well and cuts to the core of Arya Nagarjuna's presentation on Emptiness:


If you are interested also try and find a good commentary in English on the Mulamadhyamakakarika (The Fundamental Wisdom of the Middle Way,
there is this but I have to be honest I haven't read this yet:
http://www.amazon.com/Fundamental-Wisdo ... 0195093364

a very short "biography" of Arya Nagarjuna can be found here:

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tiltbillings
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Nov 09, 2009 4:20 am


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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby pink_trike » Mon Nov 09, 2009 4:24 am

Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.

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tiltbillings
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Nov 09, 2009 4:29 am


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tiltbillings
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Nov 09, 2009 5:22 am


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Dan74
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby Dan74 » Mon Nov 09, 2009 5:30 am

_/|\_

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retrofuturist
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Nov 09, 2009 5:33 am

Greetings Dan,

It's useful if you want to know whether something is worth the time to study... particularly when I assume Blackbird will also ultimately be interested in reading as much of the Sutta Pitaka as possible. It's about priorities and expected 'return on investment'.

:reading:

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

enkidu
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby enkidu » Mon Nov 09, 2009 5:41 am


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Dan74
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby Dan74 » Mon Nov 09, 2009 5:48 am

Hi retro!

I think it's very hard to know in advance which bit of dhamma/dharma will touch that string, inspire or even trigger an insight...

Sure, there are sensible progressions, but they can be very dry... It's not like academic study, is it?

_/|\_

PS Hi enkidu! :smile:

Sifting through so many words? Doesn't it get a bit... tiresome? (I guess I am speaking from experience here... :embarassed: )

_/|\_
_/|\_

enkidu
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby enkidu » Mon Nov 09, 2009 6:03 am


Paññāsikhara
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby Paññāsikhara » Mon Nov 09, 2009 6:15 am

My recently moved Blog, containing some of my writings on the Buddha Dhamma, as well as a number of translations from classical Buddhist texts and modern authors, liturgy, etc.: .

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zavk
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby zavk » Mon Nov 09, 2009 7:56 am

Wow, it would be great if you could share some of your research here, Venerable--but maybe you'll have to simplify it for me.... :)

Needless to say, I have not studied Nagarjuna systematically but have read bits of Garfield's book and also Batchelor's poetic rendition of the MMK. I agree with Tilt's recommendation.

Without a rigorous study of the MMK (or the Sutta Pitaka for the matter), I cannot say with accuracy if Nagarjuna's ideas are 'in line' with Theravadin thought. But from what little I know, I have found his method of reasoning/analysis a useful 'supplement' to my overall understanding of the Dhamma.
With metta,
zavk

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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby mikenz66 » Mon Nov 09, 2009 8:32 am


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Dan74
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby Dan74 » Mon Nov 09, 2009 9:18 am

What you say makes perfect sense, mike.

And yet making sense is perhaps not enough for proceeding on this journey. Sometimes being confronted with seeming paradoxes, we open up to what we had been previously closed, confronted with something incomprehensible, we become humble. The mental chatter stops and we hear dhamma as if for the first time.

A methodical study can be very beneficial no argument there. Just throwing some ideas around.

Sorry for hijacking the thread...

:meditate:

_/|\_
_/|\_

Paññāsikhara
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby Paññāsikhara » Mon Nov 09, 2009 9:53 am

My recently moved Blog, containing some of my writings on the Buddha Dhamma, as well as a number of translations from classical Buddhist texts and modern authors, liturgy, etc.: .

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BlackBird
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Re: Nagarjuna

Postby BlackBird » Mon Nov 09, 2009 10:02 am

"For a disciple who has conviction in the Teacher's message & lives to penetrate it, what accords with the Dhamma is this:
'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I." -


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