Buddhahood in Chan

Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Malcolm » Sat Aug 27, 2011 10:01 pm

Jnana wrote:With Chan, everything is a direct introduction. Every moment of every experience.


People place too much importance on this word "direct introduction", so much so they have no idea what it means anymore.

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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby deepbluehum » Sat Aug 27, 2011 10:01 pm

Jnana wrote:
deepbluehum wrote:Let's just say Chan's method of introducing is equivalent to this. I don't think so. I think such an introduction is special to Vajrayana

With Chan, everything is a direct introduction. Every moment of every experience.


That's very poetic. But I'm talking in pragmatics.

Jnana wrote:
deepbluehum wrote:Or there are other secretive teachings involving channels and winds. The main point is one has an inner experience of bliss-emptiness that makes letting go of externals very easy. Again, this is not a point of faith, but yogic direct knowledge. The more powerful methods make more powerful bliss-emptiness experiences.

Saraha:

    Don’t hold your breath and think on yourself;
    wretched yogin, don’t focus in on the tip of your nose.
    Hey, fool! Savor yourself fully in the innate;
    don’t just wander around, bound by the lines of existence.


It might occur to you that this instruction is a method to cause the student to give up grasping at methods when the case is that the method has been given too much focus. Saraha did teach methods. In fact the most profound methods take Mahamudra as the base, and practice visualizations and pranayama with that view already realized. The only reason why this would be so is because just realizing the view is not the end of the story. There are still the practices to generate conditions favorable for helping every sentient being.
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Malcolm » Sat Aug 27, 2011 10:10 pm

deepbluehum wrote:
Jnana wrote:
deepbluehum wrote:Let's just say Chan's method of introducing is equivalent to this. I don't think so. I think such an introduction is special to Vajrayana

With Chan, everything is a direct introduction. Every moment of every experience.


That's very poetic. But I'm talking in pragmatics.



Geoff seems to think that giving a blizzard of citations from some post 12th century mahamudra text is sufficient for proving the path of seeing is buddhahood.

But i doubt very much whether Gampopa himself holds this view.

N
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Jnana » Sat Aug 27, 2011 10:24 pm

Namdrol wrote:These don't say anything, absent contextualized reasoning and explanation.

Reasoning and explanation are just word play. Saraha:

    Others run around in the Great Way,
    where scripture turns to sophistry and word play.

Namdrol wrote:Geoff seems to think that giving a blizzard of citations from some post 12th century mahamudra text is sufficient for proving the path of seeing is buddhahood.

The "path of seeing" is just a conceptual designation employed by gradualists. Lama Shang:

    The three kāyas are primordially, naturally present
    in the nature of the mind, which is like space;
    the Jewel of the Buddha is completely within it...

    The superior realization of your own mind as
    nondual luminosity is the path of seeing,
    its unbroken continuity is the path of meditation,
    its effortlessness is the path of complete attainment.
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Jnana » Sat Aug 27, 2011 10:31 pm

deepbluehum wrote:It might occur to you that this instruction is a method to cause the student to give up grasping at methods when the case is that the method has been given too much focus.

Chan is all about giving up grasping at methods. The same as early, pristine dzogchen:

    Seeing that everything is self-perfected from the very beginning,
    the disease of striving for any achievement is surrendered,
    and just remaining in the natural state as it is,
    the presence of non-dual contemplation continuously spontaneously arises.
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Malcolm » Sat Aug 27, 2011 10:33 pm

Jnana wrote:
deepbluehum wrote:It might occur to you that this instruction is a method to cause the student to give up grasping at methods when the case is that the method has been given too much focus.

Chan is all about giving up grasping at methods. The same as early, pristine dzogchen:

    Seeing that everything is self-perfected from the very beginning,
    the disease of striving for any achievement is surrendered,
    and just remaining in the natural state as it is,
    the presence of non-dual contemplation continuously spontaneously arises.



There is no such thing as an early, pristine Dzogchen.
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Jnana » Sat Aug 27, 2011 10:38 pm

Namdrol wrote:There is no such thing as an early, pristine Dzogchen.

LOL.... Too funny.
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Malcolm » Sat Aug 27, 2011 10:39 pm

Jnana wrote:
Namdrol wrote:These don't say anything, absent contextualized reasoning and explanation.

Reasoning and explanation are just word play. Saraha:

    Others run around in the Great Way,
    where scripture turns to sophistry and word play.



You are mistaking songs of realization as substituting for the path that got them there.


Lama Shang:

    The three kāyas are primordially, naturally present
    in the nature of the mind, which is like space;
    the Jewel of the Buddha is completely within it...

    The superior realization of your own mind as
    nondual luminosity is the path of seeing,
    its unbroken continuity is the path of meditation,
    its effortlessness is the path of complete attainment.
[/quote]

This does not refute the path of seeing in anyway.

When you do not have unbroken continuity of equipoise, what then? In this respect, there can be no discussion of complete attainment.

So, this is another example of poetic rhetoric.

But it certainly has nothing to do with Indian Mahāyāna nor how Chan deviates from it.

N
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Malcolm » Sat Aug 27, 2011 10:41 pm

Jnana wrote:
Namdrol wrote:There is no such thing as an early, pristine Dzogchen.

LOL.... Too funny.



There isn't.

This idea of a "pristine Dzogchen"(aka mind series) is a fantasy invented by some western translators. In reality, the mind series was a commentary on completion stage of Mahāyoga, as Rongzom makes very clear in his theg chen tshul 'jug, when he describes Dzogchen as a commentary on the tantra division.

Anyway, it is pretty clear you are not someone who is speaking from personal experience of the tenets which you espouse, otherwise you would not be wasting your time here. You might consider that unfair or ad hominem (which it is) -- but unless it is the case that you or Astus claim to persons realized in these tenets which you espouse, it really is just so much tarka.

N
Last edited by Malcolm on Sat Aug 27, 2011 11:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Jnana » Sat Aug 27, 2011 10:59 pm

Namdrol wrote:This does not refute the path of seeing in anyway.

There's no need to refute the path of seeing. It's simply a question of emphasis. Chan emphasizes effortless recognition. The same emphasis can be found in numerous sutras, tantras, dohas, and so on.

Namdrol wrote:But it certainly has nothing to do with Indian Mahāyāna nor how Chan deviates from it.

Not all Chanists denied the paths and stages. Bojo Jinul's Encouragement to Practice: The Compact of the Samādhi and Prajñā Community:

    In the complete insight into the true and eternal qualities of one’s own mind, if activity and stillness are interfused and the dharmadhātu is realized, then we know that the qualities of all the bhūmis, the approaches to dharma as numerous as dust motes, and the nine and ten time periods are not separate from the present thought. As the nature of the mind is numinous, sublime, and self-reliant, it contains innumerable types of dharmas. The myriads of dharmas have never been separated from the self-nature; whether they are activated or not, nature and characteristics, essence and function, and adaptability and immutability operate simultaneously and without hindrance. This mind at first is without past or present, ordinary or holy, good or evil, attachment or rejection; nevertheless, their influence is gradual. As one passes through all the stages, compassion and wisdom are gradually made complete and sentient beings are perfected; nevertheless, from beginning to end that mind does not move from one time, one thought, one dharma, or one practice.

It's a basic tathāgatagarbha view, as in the Ratnagotravibhāga (but employing East Asian terminology). Jinul's Complete and Sudden Attainment of Buddhahood:

    It is also the perfectly bright purity of the original true nature of sentient beings which abides in pollution but is not stained, which is cultivated but becomes no purer. When defilements cover it, it is concealed; when wisdom reveals it, it appears. It is not something which comes into being due to the arising-cause; it is, rather, only understood through the understanding-cause. If someone looks back on the radiance of his own mind’s pure, enlightened nature and thereby extinguishes falsity and cleanses his mind, the myriads of images then appear together. It is just like seawater that has settled: there are no images which are not reflected. Hence it is called the ever-abiding function of the oceanseal of all phenomena in the universe. Accordingly, we can know that the perfectly bright and self-reliant functions of the dharmadhātu which remain, including the unimpeded interpenetration of all phenomena as described in the three pervasions, are never separate from the pure enlightened nature.
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Jnana » Sat Aug 27, 2011 11:00 pm

Namdrol wrote:Anyway, it is pretty clear you are not someone who is speaking from personal experience of the tenets which you espouse, otherwise you would not be wasting your time here.

Which tenets would those be?
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Malcolm » Sat Aug 27, 2011 11:13 pm

Jnana wrote:
Namdrol wrote:This does not refute the path of seeing in anyway.

There's no need to refute the path of seeing. It's simply a question of emphasis. Chan emphasizes effortless recognition. The same emphasis can be found in numerous sutras, tantras, dohas, and so on.



Effortless recognition /= buddhahood. It just doesn't. Otherwise, Arhats are also Buddhas. Now, you might think that is true, and certainly tilt billings does, but that is not a Mahāyāna perspective on the issue.




Namdrol wrote:But it certainly has nothing to do with Indian Mahāyāna nor how Chan deviates from it.



Not all Chanists denied the paths and stages.


I know, we are concerned here with those that do, primarily.

It's a basic tathāgatagarbha view,


There is no one basic tathagarbha view, there are a couple.

Even here tathagatagabins in India never imagined that tathagatagarbha alleviated the need for a long, grueling, mahāyāna path.

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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Malcolm » Sat Aug 27, 2011 11:14 pm

Jnana wrote:
Namdrol wrote:Anyway, it is pretty clear you are not someone who is speaking from personal experience of the tenets which you espouse, otherwise you would not be wasting your time here.

Which tenets would those be?


mere recognition = buddhahood.

N
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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby deepbluehum » Sat Aug 27, 2011 11:25 pm

Jnana wrote:
deepbluehum wrote:It might occur to you that this instruction is a method to cause the student to give up grasping at methods when the case is that the method has been given too much focus.

Chan is all about giving up grasping at methods. The same as early, pristine dzogchen:

    Seeing that everything is self-perfected from the very beginning,
    the disease of striving for any achievement is surrendered,
    and just remaining in the natural state as it is,
    the presence of non-dual contemplation continuously spontaneously arises.


Well then how about giving up grasping at no method? Every heard of the deity primordially present in the base? Or nonmeditation with visualization? Or the effortless presence of the mantra? The method of visualization is introduced as a method, then as a non-method, then as a non-method method. Each time to combat the grasping that happens at the previous stage.

Also there is no early pristine dzogchen. This is like a neo-tantra thing for Western people.
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Jnana » Sat Aug 27, 2011 11:27 pm

Namdrol wrote:Effortless recognition /= buddhahood. It just doesn't.

I already agreed with you on this point on page 3 of this thread:

Jnana wrote:
Namdrol wrote:Of coure what we are dealing with here is a specfies of tathāgatagarbha thinking, but even hear, I don't think that the type of instant buddhahood you see some Chan masters proclaiming can be justified on the basis of any Indian sutras, tathāgatgarbha or otherwise.

Agreed.


The other extensive quotations were simply to highlight that there are numerous passages in the Buddhist literature which either downplay paths and methods or rhetorically deny the gradual paradigm altogether. This isn't unique to Chan.
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Jnana » Sat Aug 27, 2011 11:31 pm

deepbluehum wrote:Also there is no early pristine dzogchen.

[Psst: It was said to get a rise out of Namdrol. As were the quotes from Lama Shang.]

:focus:


Now deepbluehum, are you here to discuss Chan/Seon/Zen, or do you just want to extol the superiority of Tibetan Buddhism some more???
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Jnana » Sat Aug 27, 2011 11:59 pm

Namdrol wrote:Your non-sequitors about Vajrayāna are a distracting waste of time.

And FTR, I wasn't criticizing the vajrayāna, nor even Tibetan Buddhism per se. I was criticizing this modern internet phenomenon of "Tibetan Buddhists" who have convinced themselves that they know non-Tibetan traditions better than everyone who practices those traditions, and run around shooting their mouths off all the time.
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Malcolm » Sun Aug 28, 2011 12:21 am

Jnana wrote:
Namdrol wrote:Your non-sequitors about Vajrayāna are a distracting waste of time.

And FTR, I wasn't criticizing the vajrayāna, nor even Tibetan Buddhism per se. I was criticizing this modern internet phenomenon of "Tibetan Buddhists" who have convinced themselves that they know non-Tibetan traditions better than everyone who practices those traditions, and run around shooting their mouths off all the time.


I don't pretend to know Chan better than Chan Buddhists.

What I do know is that certain Chan claims have no basis in Mahāyāna sutra.

N
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby deepbluehum » Sun Aug 28, 2011 12:41 am

Jnana wrote:
deepbluehum wrote:Also there is no early pristine dzogchen.

[Psst: It was said to get a rise out of Namdrol. As were the quotes from Lama Shang.]

:focus:


Now deepbluehum, are you here to discuss Chan/Seon/Zen, or do you just want to extol the superiority of Tibetan Buddhism some more???


We are talking about what is buddhahood to Chan. I mentioned that what we have in common with Chan is an idea of no buddha. So to recap it would be common to both that 24/7 nongrasping is buddhahood. My point to you is that this is not a matter of faith, but of fact. It is truly possible to be in a state of 24/7 nongrasping. Buddha-mind or whatever name is that state. That the major and minor marks are interdependent with that state is also not faith, because in one's practice of vajrayana the visualizing of those marks is also co-arising with samadhi which is also that state. This is also not contradictory to the Diamond Sutra's statement that the Tathagata is not the major and minor marks.

Okay so here we are recognizing every experience is Buddhish. We should just keep in that recognition. But can we really? Forget Buddhism and Chan and what Vajrayana says. If you get such an introduction to suchness is that really it? Is that sufficient to dispel the anger and fear that arises in dreams for example? There must be 24/7 suchness realization. Chan and I should agree on that.
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Re: Buddhahood in Chan

Postby Astus » Sun Aug 28, 2011 7:12 pm

Namdrol wrote:What I do know is that certain Chan claims have no basis in Mahāyāna sutra.


The classical definition of Chan:

教外別傳 - Separate transmission outside doctrines
不立文字 - Doesn't rely on words and letters
直指人心 - Directly points to human mind
見性成佛 - To see nature and become buddha

So indeed, Chan is not based on sutras, shastras, or any doctrine. That is, of course, not the same as denying them. Also, those who wanted to match Chan with Jiao (doctrinal teachings), happened to do that using primarily Huayan teachings, which again does not fit Indian Mahayana interpretations in every aspect. You may call that "plain wrong" and such, but that doesn't make things any clearer. Chan is a practical tradition, calling it buddhahood, bodhisattvahood, enlightenment, awakening, etc. are all rhetoric, names and words.

Record of Linji, tr. Sasaki wrote:"According to the masters of the sutras and śāstras, the threefold body is regarded as the ultimate norm. But in my view this is not so. Th e threefold body is merely a name; moreover, it is a threefold dependency. ... you must recognize the one who manipulates these reflections. ‘He is the primal source of all the buddhas,’ and the place to which every follower of the Way returns."

"There is only the man of the Way who depends upon nothing, here listening to my discourse—it is he who is the mother of all buddhas. Therefore buddhas are born from nondependence. Awaken to nondependence, then there is no buddha to be obtained. Insight such as this is true insight."

"Seeking buddha and seeking dharma are only making hell-karma. Seeking bodhisattvahood is also making karma; reading the sutras and studying the teachings are also making karma. Buddhas and patriarchs are people with nothing to do. Therefore, [for them] activity and the defiling passions and also nonactivity and passionlessness are ‘pure’ karma."
"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)

"Neither cultivation nor seated meditation — this is the pure Chan of Tathagata."
(Mazu Daoyi, X1321p3b23; tr. Jinhua Jia)

“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; T2076p461b24-26)
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