Search found 894 matches

by Matt J
Fri Oct 12, 2012 9:45 pm
Forum: Academic Discussion
Topic: Questioning Alayavijnana
Replies: 184
Views: 35587

Re: Questioning Alayavijnana

One thing strikes me: the alaya vijnana is not so different from the casual body in Vedanta (karana sarira). According to Samkhya philosophy, the entire world is made up of prakriti, up to and including the various functions of consciousness (manas, buddhi, etc.). The mind was made out of subtle mat...
by Matt J
Thu Oct 11, 2012 2:25 pm
Forum: Academic Discussion
Topic: Questioning Alayavijnana
Replies: 184
Views: 35587

Re: Questioning Alayavijnana

The point is, once the "seeds" manifest, they are no longer latent. They are actualizing. "Levels" of consciousness is a strange idea to me. Consciousness is formless, so how can it have levels? Of course you can "see" the seeds, they are what manifests via manas into mano vijnana, vijnana and citta...
by Matt J
Wed Oct 10, 2012 11:51 pm
Forum: Academic Discussion
Topic: Questioning Alayavijnana
Replies: 184
Views: 35587

Re: Questioning Alayavijnana

I think I'm clear on what alaya vijnana is, experientially, and I find I have come across the exact question. From the point of view of direct experience, I come to the same problem. An unconscious mind can only exist as an inference. If so, then why would we presume many instead of one? Maybe every...
by Matt J
Tue Oct 09, 2012 12:12 am
Forum: Academic Discussion
Topic: AynRand's "objectivism" compared with dharma
Replies: 28
Views: 5811

Re: AynRand's "objectivism" compared with dharma

Thank you for giving me the chance to stretch my mind muscles. First, let me practice some Nagarjuna: If there is a reality independent of the senses, is it the same as or different from the senses? If they are completely the same, then reality is the senses, and there is no independent reality. If ...
by Matt J
Sun Oct 07, 2012 4:41 pm
Forum: Zen
Topic: Zen has No Morals
Replies: 132
Views: 22888

Re: Zen has No Morals

I believe it is called nihilism, an extreme clearly rejected by both Buddhism and Zen. I'm completely OK if people want to see Zen as something that is ungraspable, something that has no ethical anchor points....it's just not Zen, and it might be best if this kind of view was called something other ...
by Matt J
Fri Oct 05, 2012 1:18 pm
Forum: Dharma in Everyday Life
Topic: The Emptiness in Form
Replies: 27
Views: 4771

Re: The Emptiness in Form

I completely disagree. Asking questions is key to the Buddhist path. In fact, investigation is the second factor of enlightenment. The trouble is asking the right questions, questions that in my mind are rooted in our experience. I realise that I should not ask questions but simply ask who is the th...
by Matt J
Sun Sep 09, 2012 1:50 pm
Forum: Dharma in Everyday Life
Topic: Direct Teaching
Replies: 84
Views: 11413

Re: Direct Teaching

I think you're confusing the Buddhist concept of karma with the Hindu concept of dharma. Also, judgment is very coarse. You're missing out on feeling (vedana) and also on intention, depending on which path you're following. If you intend to harm a person, and take steps to do so, and then "relax" to...
by Matt J
Sun Sep 09, 2012 1:19 pm
Forum: Dharma in Everyday Life
Topic: Why did you choose Buddhism?
Replies: 98
Views: 20078

Re: Why did you choose Buddhism?

I feel fortunate to live in a day and a time where I've been able to choose Buddhist teachings. I was attracted to Buddhist teaching because it was sensible, required no faith, and provided an established set of transformative practices. My frustration with other spiritual teachings was that they pr...
by Matt J
Fri Sep 07, 2012 2:00 pm
Forum: Dharma in Everyday Life
Topic: Can someone definitively explain to me the differences...?
Replies: 9
Views: 3319

Re: Can someone definitively explain to me the differences...?

John Daido Loori says that when one completes their koan practice, one returns to shikantaza. On the other hand, I've also heard from Korean and Chinese practitioners, that one may practice a koan their entire life. Anapanasati can be an entire path in itself--- see the Anapanasati Sutta, for exampl...
by Matt J
Mon Sep 03, 2012 12:20 am
Forum: Dharma in Everyday Life
Topic: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.
Replies: 27
Views: 4598

Re: 1-2 Noble Thruth explanation.

Personally, I would not define "dukkha" as positive pain. The first Noble Truth means that nothing is satisfying. If sex were truly satisfying, then we'd only need to have it once. The same goes for the other things you have listed. I've read that winning the lottery gives a temporary, short term sp...
by Matt J
Sat Sep 01, 2012 2:21 pm
Forum: Dharma in Everyday Life
Topic: Expectations and progress
Replies: 43
Views: 5538

Re: Expectations and progress

The very basis of Buddhist practice is practice. Without practice, Buddhist study simply becomes an intellectual exercise, a way to rearrange the inner map. It is easy to practice such a "book dharma"--- but unfortunately, practice is difficult and often painful. Our habits are deeply ingrained even...
by Matt J
Fri Aug 31, 2012 2:25 pm
Forum: Dharma in Everyday Life
Topic: Expectations and progress
Replies: 43
Views: 5538

Re: Expectations and progress

That's a fine recipe for nihilism.
oushi wrote: Actually, it's the other way around. You realise you are not in control of you mental states, and not responsible for them. Without guilt, there are no expectations, and no suffering.
by Matt J
Wed Aug 29, 2012 6:20 pm
Forum: Zen
Topic: Doing zazen but drawn to Pure Land,
Replies: 29
Views: 6688

Re: Doing zazen but drawn to Pure Land,

The legendary Xu Yun believed they were compatible.

http://hsuyun.budismo.net/en/dharma/two ... rses1.html
by Matt J
Sat Aug 25, 2012 3:20 pm
Forum: Dharma in Everyday Life
Topic: Thoughts during meditation
Replies: 14
Views: 2838

Re: Thoughts during meditation

I would say it depends on what type of meditation you practice. I've practiced in both Theravada and the Zen tradition. In Theravada, my thoughts would eventually quiet, but only during intensive retreats. In zazen, my thoughts arise and fall depending on my state of mind. Others traditions may have...
by Matt J
Mon Aug 20, 2012 2:37 pm
Forum: Zen
Topic: Do Zen Buddhists use a butsudan/altar?
Replies: 29
Views: 12557

Re: Do Zen Buddhists use a butsudan/altar?

Depends. I've been in Rinzai-type places that face the altar. I've been in Soto-type places that face the wall. We have an alter in our home. We are Soto Zen. It has an image of the Buddha, incense burner/bowl, flowers (artificial), a candle, and an offering (we usually put a packet of tea or a fres...
by Matt J
Mon Aug 20, 2012 2:29 pm
Forum: Mahāyāna Buddhism
Topic: Could someone explain emptiness?
Replies: 50
Views: 12133

Re: Could someone explain emptiness?

If you go back to old sutta Buddhism, the Buddha teaches that everything is impermanent, lacks a self, and is not satisfying. In my mind, while these seem to be three things, they are actually related. Because things lack a permanent self, they are impermanent. Because they are impermanent, they are...
by Matt J
Thu Aug 09, 2012 12:31 am
Forum: Dharma in Everyday Life
Topic: Which Buddhist School is Right For Me?
Replies: 31
Views: 4731

Re: Which Buddhist School is Right For Me?

Just a thought, but perhaps it might be clearer to go through the dharma turnings in order.

I've found a thorough grounding in sutta-based Buddhism has helped me immensely in understanding Mahayana practice.
by Matt J
Wed Aug 01, 2012 12:36 pm
Forum: Zen
Topic: Non-Abiding Awareness
Replies: 49
Views: 14733

Re: Non-Abiding Awareness

Astus, I have no disagreement, I was wondering what your "position" was. A lot of people I've been around these days have been into awareness, which is the opposite of what my Buddhist teachers, past and present, have taught. The important disclaimer is that these are primarily Theravada and Zen tea...
by Matt J
Wed Aug 01, 2012 2:07 am
Forum: Dharma in Everyday Life
Topic: Is Goenka Vipassana a good technique?
Replies: 15
Views: 3449

Re: Is Goenka Vipassana a good technique?

One can always find an excuse to NOT do something. Why not just try it and see what happens? I've read about the vipassana technique taught by Goenka. It's a body scan technique, as you know. Do you think that calmly observing bodily sensations can really lead to a change in a person's psychological...
by Matt J
Mon Jul 30, 2012 12:15 am
Forum: Zen
Topic: Non-Abiding Awareness
Replies: 49
Views: 14733

Re: Non-Abiding Awareness

What do you make of Foyan's statement:
People nowadays take the immediate mirroring awareness to be the ultimate principle. This is why Xuansha said to people, 'Tell me, does it still exist in remote uninhabited places deep in the mountains?'

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