If everyone has buddha nature...

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nichiren-123
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If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by nichiren-123 »

Why is learning necessary in buddhism?
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by DGA »

nichiren-123 wrote:Why is learning necessary in buddhism?
Let's clarify some terms first. What do you mean by Buddha Nature? And what do you mean by learning?
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by nichiren-123 »

DGA wrote:
nichiren-123 wrote:Why is learning necessary in buddhism?
Let's clarify some terms first. What do you mean by Buddha Nature? And what do you mean by learning?
I'm not good at explaining things but I'll try my best:

I take buddha-nature to mean the potential for buddhahood as expounded in the 10 worlds and ichinen sanzen.

By learning, I mean things like having an understanding of teintai's threefold truth, dependent-co-arising etc. So to explain it better, I mean knowledge of "how things are".

The reason I'm confused is because if everyone has buddha-nature then shouldn't it be able to be manifested without any 'wisdom-knowledge'?
For instance, how is a child supposed to manifest their buddha-nature when they are too young to comprehend ideas like the middle way?
The way I see it, surely wisdom can't be an essential for enlightenment, otherwise you'd have to throw out (my own understanding of) buddha-nature...?

P.S I realize wisdom is a bit of a loaded word in buddhism, but I'm using it in a broad context where it would be analogous to 'knowledge'/understanding
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by Schrödinger’s Yidam »

Buddha Nature is a popular translation of "Tathagatagarbha". From Wiki:
The Tathāgatagarbha sūtras are a group of Mahayana sutras that present the concept of the "womb" or "embryo" (garbha) of the tathāgata, the buddha. Every sentient being has the possibility to attain Buddhahood because of the tathāgatagarbha.

So you can think of it as Buddha Potential.
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by DGA »

smcj wrote:Buddha Nature is a popular translation of "Tathagatagarbha". From Wiki:
The Tathāgatagarbha sūtras are a group of Mahayana sutras that present the concept of the "womb" or "embryo" (garbha) of the tathāgata, the buddha. Every sentient being has the possibility to attain Buddhahood because of the tathāgatagarbha.

So you can think of it as Buddha Potential.
Yes, that's one way it is described.

I asked nichiren-123 directly in order to understand the context for the question.

so...
DGA wrote:
nichiren-123 wrote:Why is learning necessary in buddhism?
Let's clarify some terms first. What do you mean by Buddha Nature? And what do you mean by learning?
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by Malcolm »

smcj wrote:Buddha Nature is a popular translation of "Tathagatagarbha". From Wiki:
In fact it is a translation of buddhagarbha.
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that name does not exist."
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by steveb1 »

OP,

I think that Buddhist learning is recommended because our perception of our own Buddha Nature is somewhat occluded by
our samsaric participation, by ego, delusion, blind desire, attachment, etc.

It would seem that education by those teachers and sages who have previously, and adequately, experienced Buddha nature is only natural and appropriate for those who are seeking, but have not yet achieved, a sense of their own Buddha-ness. Hence the existence of learning and education.

:)
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by DGA »

nichiren-123 wrote:
DGA wrote:
nichiren-123 wrote:Why is learning necessary in buddhism?
Let's clarify some terms first. What do you mean by Buddha Nature? And what do you mean by learning?
I'm not good at explaining things but I'll try my best:

I take buddha-nature to mean the potential for buddhahood as expounded in the 10 worlds and ichinen sanzen.

By learning, I mean things like having an understanding of teintai's threefold truth, dependent-co-arising etc. So to explain it better, I mean knowledge of "how things are".

The reason I'm confused is because if everyone has buddha-nature then shouldn't it be able to be manifested without any 'wisdom-knowledge'?
For instance, how is a child supposed to manifest their buddha-nature when they are too young to comprehend ideas like the middle way?
The way I see it, surely wisdom can't be an essential for enlightenment, otherwise you'd have to throw out (my own understanding of) buddha-nature...?

P.S I realize wisdom is a bit of a loaded word in buddhism, but I'm using it in a broad context where it would be analogous to 'knowledge'/understanding
This is a good place to start.

If you have the potential for something, but you have not realized it, then how do you go about realizing that potential? If we all have the capacity to learn a language, for example, how come we're not born speaking all languages? It's because we're limited in certain ways, and to overcome those limits, we have some learning to do.

Now, with regard to Buddha Nature, what are those limitations? It would be worthwhile to go back to Lotus Sutra, chapter 4, and a particularly clever parable. This is the one about the son who, by birthright, owned a great fortune, but due to his own foolishness wandered off and forgot his identity. He became convinced that he was a loser, basically, and couldn't possibly conceive that he was actually much greater than this limited view of himself allowed. His father made very special arrangements for him to work hard until he was able to accept the premise that he was the rightful owner of a great fortune, and had been from the start. All that work was objectively pointless, but subjectively very necessary. So it is with Buddha Nature and the need to learn and to practice.

What do you think?
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by muni »

*I do not teach separation.* sz.

Wisdom beings know that we are not separate. This is why they are able to grant blessings."
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by seeker242 »

I'm gonna go with "So that you can open your eyes and see it for yourself first hand"
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by dharmagoat »

Effort and learning are necessary in order to get to the point where buddha nature becomes self-evident. The rest follows on naturally.
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Minobu
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by Minobu »

so like the whole MahaVairocana in the palm of Mahavairocana's hand thing....nagging at me.

put that aside for a moment...

I..what is this I...it's nonexistent and yet it exists according to Sunyata.

There is an i but there actually isn't.

if there was an I it would be like some inherent soul transmigrating from lifetime to lifetime from species to species...

But that is for the others to think it is...Not those who heard of their Buddha nature.

nothing exists in and of itself so there is no I .

So if we are to go along with , that everything is Buddhanature and we are something manifesting in Mahavairocan's hand .

We cannot go the route of souls and God Creator...then all we actually are, is the left over mess of Buddha MahaVairocana's past and when we finally really realize this we have done our part....disappear from the face/"PALM" of existence and are like purified...

Nirvana is Buddha Mahavairocana's Buddha Body...We no longer continue to exist as samsaric karma and will have done what is supposed to be done...

His aspect is that He is one of many Mahavairocana's producing Samsaras.....If we do our part , we will be purified and All of these Samsaras will shrink a little instead of grow ...cause one is gone...liberated so to speak..

There is no you...any holding unto anything is just grasping and you remain the problem instead of the solution..

all this Samsaric matter is Karma...a mistake that happened a long time ago when desire kept into the picture and it all started....there was a beginning ..even though people think there was not for the nature of samsara is an endless cycle..It keeps happening somewhere ...a time thing created through matter created by karma...time bends upon itself giving the illusion of no beginning and no end...Karma created through desire...

what happens when all sentients attain this Buddhahood?....what happens to samsara then?....

it starts to fill up again...due to desire....the urge never really goes away and a new samsara is created....

thats what happened to Avolikiteshvara...He waited till the last Sentient was liberated...when he was pleased with himself he was told to look back ....he saw samsara filling up again...and he broke into a thousand pieces from despair..and shock...which all the Buddhas put back together and gave him a thousand arms to be better at what He does...

pointless it seems...

time for fun.....

frak it....


ah....but thats the grasping thing again....you think you are real ...you are not real....you are the leftover refuse of Buddha Mahavairocana's past deeds ....therefore you are He...you are He straightening out his past mistake of getting conned by desire into trying this desire thing and eating the hard food instead of the living in the world of light.


we are just His shit...so to speak..

get over yourself...leave it ....do your part..practice what he has put before you...there is no you though only him and his shit.which basically you are..


excuse the word and use of shit...it's poetic licence and means no disrespect . just trying to point t to what you think you are.

You are buddha but not in the way your "I" wants it to be.
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Minobu
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by Minobu »

hopefully people will see the post for what it is...grappling with being something or nothing in the palm of Buddha MahaVairocan's palm.

the buddha nature is a product of MahaVairocana Palm...

how and what that is...along with other clues / crumbs left for Hansel and Gretel ..
like the son cleaning out the toilets...

sorry ..but this is a methodology of learning...thank you kindly for your indulgence...

some aspect of the post might get some sort of input that helps...
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by Queequeg »

nichiren-123 wrote:Why is learning necessary in buddhism?
Buddhanature is not really something we have. I think it might be more appropriate to say Buddhanature is what we are. The problem is that Buddhanature is obscured by fundamental misapprehension about reality. As a result, without it being pointed out to us, we remain ignorant of it. Once it is pointed out to us, we need to make efforts to see it properly.

The above is basically the teaching on Buddhanature as taught by Zhiyi (Tiantai).

From the Glossary to Swanson's translation of Mohezhikuan (Great Cessation and Contemplation):

Threefold Buddhanature - the three causes for attaining Buddhahood. The potential to attain Buddhahood, analyzed as having three aspects: the “direct cause”, that all beings are endowed with the nature of Buddhahood by their participation in reality; the “complete cause”, the wisdom that illumines this nature; and “the conditional causes”, the practices or conditions that bring about wisdom."

Direct Cause is our fundamental Buddhanature. In Tiantai, this is described in a number of ways. At the simplest level, its described as the Threefold Inclusive Truth - Emptiness, Dependent Origination, Middle Way. In more elaborate explanations its described as the mutual possession of the ten worlds, the 100 worlds, thousand factors, and the Three Thousand in a Single Moment of Thought. These are ways of describing what we really are in our true aspect, ie. Buddhanature. Other ways of describing our real nature is "Thusness", "Suchness", etc. The Nirvana Sutra goes so far as to state the Buddhanature is our true Self.

The Complete Cause is someone (the Buddha) telling you about Buddhanature. This is compared to an impoverished family not knowing that a treasure is buried in the hearth of their home. A wise man (the Buddha) comes along and shows them where to dig and so they find the treasure. This is also the underlying message of the parable DGA referred to from the Lotus Sutra, except it more or less describes the perspective of the Buddha.

The Conditional Cause are your efforts to "dig up" the Buddhanature. Another way this is described is, after the Buddha points out the Buddhanature to us, because our wisdom eye is weak, we can only make out the Buddhanature faintly. In fact, we're not even sure that what we see is the Buddhanature. However, we continue to look intently at what the Buddha pointed out, and we gradually come to see it more clearly until we see it as the Buddha sees it.

IMHO, the various methods of some Buddhist teachings (not all, because not all Buddhist teachings directly address Buddhanature) are the different strategies for attaining the insight of the Buddha.
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Upaya Chapter

純一実相。実相外。更無別法。法性寂然名止。寂而常渉照名観。
There is only reality; there is nothing separate from reality. The naturally tranquil nature of dharmas is shamatha. The abiding luminosity of tranquility is vipashyana.

-From Guanding's Introduction to Zhiyi's Great Shamatha and Vipashyana
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Minobu
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by Minobu »

maybe it's me today..maybe i'm jaded..
but there is a lot of talk and reciting ancient teachers through modern interpretations about something that should just be flat out known.

like 2 and 2 = 4.

end of...

all this endless quantifying from ancient interpreters about the word BuddhaNature ...

can someone just tell me what it is...instead of pointing ...

sorry but i'm just tired of trying to figure the thing out...

i'm 62...and still can ask the same old same old...and get new takes on directing me to something no one can tell me what it is....

what is terrifying me is this new thing introduced in the colloquiums that there seems to be a creationist thing going on..it all comes from Buddha nature...were are existing in the palm of Buddha Mahavairocana ....

it's like i don't even have the right questions anymore...
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Minobu
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by Minobu »

Queequeg wrote: Buddhanature is not really something we have. I think it might be more appropriate to say Buddhanature is what we are.
and yet I take refuge in "IT" with every chant of Nam Myoho Renge Kyo.

Faith is all i have right now people...faith...and the belief in Buddha and The edicts in The Lotus sutra...

bless...
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by Queequeg »

"Although innumerable Bodhisattvas may well perfectly practise the paramitas [spiritual perfections], they might only reach the stage of the ten abodes [“bhumis”] and yet may not be able to see the Buddha-Nature."
Mahaparinirvana Sutra Ch.12

Minobu, I don't think you should be too hard on yourself if you don't understand Buddhanature. Only Buddhas really know it. Bodhisattvas may know it incompletely.

Personally, I have no idea except what people tell me.
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Upaya Chapter

純一実相。実相外。更無別法。法性寂然名止。寂而常渉照名観。
There is only reality; there is nothing separate from reality. The naturally tranquil nature of dharmas is shamatha. The abiding luminosity of tranquility is vipashyana.

-From Guanding's Introduction to Zhiyi's Great Shamatha and Vipashyana
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by dharmagoat »

Queequeg wrote:Buddhanature is not really something we have. I think it might be more appropriate to say Buddhanature is what we are.
We are also the wind that dissipates it.

Buddhanature is like warmth that rises in still air.
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by Queequeg »

dharmagoat wrote:
Queequeg wrote:Buddhanature is not really something we have. I think it might be more appropriate to say Buddhanature is what we are.
We are also the wind that dissipates it.

Buddhanature is like warmth that rises in still air.
I've often been frustrated because I can't look at the back of my head. It feels like trying to stick the north ends of two infinitely strong magnets together. I've given up trying.
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Upaya Chapter

純一実相。実相外。更無別法。法性寂然名止。寂而常渉照名観。
There is only reality; there is nothing separate from reality. The naturally tranquil nature of dharmas is shamatha. The abiding luminosity of tranquility is vipashyana.

-From Guanding's Introduction to Zhiyi's Great Shamatha and Vipashyana
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dharmagoat
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Re: If everyone has buddha nature...

Post by dharmagoat »

Queequeg wrote:
dharmagoat wrote:
Queequeg wrote:Buddhanature is not really something we have. I think it might be more appropriate to say Buddhanature is what we are.
We are also the wind that dissipates it.

Buddhanature is like warmth that rises in still air.
I've often been frustrated because I can't look at the back of my head. It feels like trying to stick the north ends of two infinitely strong magnets together. I've given up trying.
Trying is like blowing, I would say. To kindle a flame you have to get it just right.

It helps to actually enjoy your practice, at the very moment.
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