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Esho
09 Jun 12, 02:37
Hi forum friends,

This Zen story seems curious:


Yamaoka Tesshu, as a young student of Zen, visited one master after another. He called upon Dokuon of Shokoku.

Desiring to show his attainment, he said:

"The mind, Buddha, and sentient beings, after all, do not exist. The true nature of phenomena is emptiness. There is no realization, no delusion, no sage, no mediocrity. There is no giving and nothing to be received."

Dokuon, who was smoking quietly, said nothing. Suddenly he whacked Yamaoka with his bamboo pipe. This made the youth quite angry.

"If nothing exists", inquired Dokuon, "where did this anger come from?"

Zen Flesh, Zen Bones,
by
Paul Reps



Any thoughts about it?

;D

Gus4U
09 Jun 12, 03:34
Buddha never said this world is an illusion, but rather he said it is LIKE an illusion: in that we misunderstand it, its causes, its nature and its impermanence. He did not say that the world is a dream, but rather that it is LIKE a dream: in that we can awaken from it and know it for what it is.

Abhaya
09 Jun 12, 05:37
Whenever I hear this story, I'm reminded of the Buddha's advice about avoiding the extremes and sticking to the middle path between nihilism and eternalism, between absolute nothingness and absolute everythingness.

Things exist conventionally, not inherently. It is not as if our actions are without a cause and without an effect. Nor is it that our actions are predetermined and our fate unalterable. To believe that nothing exists is to mistake emptiness for annihilationism. Equally misguised, a person may reify emptiness into an Ultimate Reality.

Dokuon's beating of Yamaoka serves to snap the student out of extreme views. There is such a thing as a person, there is such a thing as anger, and there is such a thing as a bamboo pipe. One should neither deny their conventional existence nor attribute any metaphysical properties to them. This is what I gleam from this anecdote.

londonerabroad
09 Jun 12, 06:09
What is important about the lesson given is distinguishing between something being empty and something being non-existent. Empty means not inherently existent or not existent as a stand-alone or permanent entity but rather as something, which is interdependent and impermanent.

The anger talked about does not exist inherently but comes about due to causes and conditions, which are interdependent and impermanent by nature, as is the resulting anger. Technically speaking the anger cannot belong to anyone because nobody exists inherently but only as a momentary inter-dependently arising consciousness so the anger is also momentary and interdependent by nature the same as all causes and conditions for anything arising or ceasing.

Aloka
09 Jun 12, 14:47
A sutta from the Pali Canon :






SN 12.15 Kaccaayanagotto Sutta: Kaccaayana

At Saavatthii the Ven. Kaccaayana asked the Blessed One :- "'Right view,right view,' it is said, Lord. In what way, Lord, is there right view?''

(Buddha said)"The world in general, Kaccaayana, inclines to two views, to existence or to non-existence. But for him who, with the highest wisdom, sees the uprising of the world as it really is, 'non-existence of the world' does not apply, and for him who, with highest wisdom, sees the passing away of the world as it really is, 'existence of the world' does not apply.

"The world in general, Kaccaayana, grasps after systems and is imprisoned by dogmas. But he does not go along with that system-grasping, that mental obstinacy and dogmatic bias, does not grasp at it, does not affirm: 'This is my self.' He knows without doubt or hesitation that whatever arises is merely dukkha, that what passes away is merely dukkha and such knowledge is his own, not depending on anyone else. This, Kaccaayana, is what constitutes right view.

"'Everything exists,' this is one extreme [view]; 'nothing exists,' this is the other extreme.

Avoiding both extremes the Tathaagata teaches a doctrine of the middle: Conditioned by ignorance are the formations.... So there comes about the arising of this entire mass of suffering. But from the complete fading away and cessation of ignorance there comes the cessation of the formations, from the cessation of the formations comes the cessation of consciousness... So there comes about the complete cessation of this entire mass of suffering."


http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn12/sn12.015.wlsh.html

Gnosis Cupitor
10 Jun 12, 01:17
Well. All of the above as far as what they said. When I first started my learning of Buddhism, that is pretty much what I thought, assumed. Thankfully I now see much differently. That's a depressing belief. :(

Oh, and as to the Master, Dokuon, "Do it again!" :up2:

BuddhaInTraining
10 Jun 12, 05:46
I would state my reply but it is identical to yours and you say it much more eloquently than I can.

Gus4U
20 Jun 12, 18:26
well posted, Aloka-D

Element
20 Jun 12, 20:16
I have heard that on one occasion the Blessed One was staying in Kosambi at Ghosita's monastery. Now at that time the inner quarters of King Udena's royal park had burned down and 500 women, headed by Samavati, had died.

Then in the early morning, a large number of monks, having put on their robes and carrying their bowls & outer robes, went into Kosambi for alms. Having gone for alms in Kosambi, after the meal, returning from their alms round, they went to the Blessed One and, on arrival, having bowed down to him, sat to one side. As they were sitting there, they said to the Blessed One: "Lord, the inner quarters of King Udena's royal park have burned down and 500 women, headed by Samavati, have died. What is the destination of those female lay followers? What is their future course?"

"Monks, among those female lay followers are stream-winners, once-returners & non-returners. In no case was the death of any of those female lay followers without [noble] fruit."

Then, on realizing the significance of that, the Blessed One on that occasion exclaimed:


Bound round with delusion, the world
only appears to be competent.
Bound with acquisitions, foolish,
surrounded by darkness,
it seems eternal,
but for one who sees,
there is nothing.

Udena Sutta (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/kn/ud/ud.7.10.than.html)

***

riju
21 Jun 12, 09:09
NOTHING EXISTS


Greatest illusion that Guatam Buddha broke is that "NOTHING EXISTS".

Yes, It is a Truth that Emptiness (Nothing) is the source of creation. And everything ends in Emptiness after a period of time.What ever is in between is "Existence". But for Guatam this was the greatest stumbling block for humans.

Guatam buddha created the science of EXISTENCE.
And wonder of wonders he created such a science that Existence could survive even the Emptiness and time.

To understand this science one has to go to Lotus sutra. In this sutra Guatam explains the methods that Buddhas have utilised and he has given a solid proof of this success.

The greatest achievement before Guatam period was considered Arhantship. An Arhant after meditation on "Nothing Exists" with awareness reaches a stage which was considered the ultimate success. No rebirth for him and the words used for him was that "he has reached the other shore"

As per Lotus Sutra Guatam Buddha held a gathering at Eagle Peak after 20 year of his preaching. And he revealed this science of Existence to a few arhants, But he asked majority of others arhants to leave the place as those arhants refused to leave their achievement and peace of arhantship. After they left, he told the remaining arhants that chaff (rejections) have left and here I bestow on you a "Prophesy" of Buddhahood in future. You all will pass thro in between stage of Bhoddhisattvahood. Whatever Sutras I preached earlier were for the preparation for this moment of revealing. I had to initially bring you all to stage of arhanship so that you qualify for this "Bestowing of Prophesy".

anata
21 Jun 12, 09:28
To understand this science one has to go to Lotus sutra.
The lotus sutra is not a large book therefore can you please quote the teachings on the science of existance? I wish to know how the Tathagatha explain on nothing exist in the lotus sutra. Thank you.

Aloka
21 Jun 12, 10:02
As per Lotus Sutra Guatam Buddha held a gathering at Eagle Peak after 20 year of his preaching. And he revealed this science of Existence to a few arhants.....


Hi riju,

If you refer to suttas, sutras or information from teachers can you please give accurate quotes which include URL links to the source material.

Thank you.

Aloka :hands:

riju
21 Jun 12, 11:46
THE LOTUS SUTRA
Translated by Burton Watson

Chapter 1..Introduction

"This is what I heard.

At the time the Buddha was in Rajagriha, staying on Mount Gridhrakuta. Accompanying him were a multitude of leading monks numbering 12000 persons.All were Arhats whose outflows had come to an end..............etc."



The above sentences are from the book. Please read further if you can get the book. I do not know URL system. Moreover I am in India where light and internet do not work properly. I have to be careful to write on notepad and save every minute. And then transfer the reply.

I have briefly written my understanding of method in Kayas. It is preparing a Vehicle of Nirman, Sambhog and Dharam kaya. If you are interested, you have to read the book and i will lead you on to the chapter and page of above book. I will also clarify it with my understanding, with whom you may or may not agree.

riju
21 Jun 12, 11:53
Moreover I have no teachers except this book. A lot cannot be expressed in words and one has to meditate on the meanings of sentences in the book for hours and hours and days and days. I adopted this method for understanding. Everyday I can explain my understandings in different words, so that it reaches the one who cannot meditate.

Aloka
21 Jun 12, 12:08
Hi riju,

This is a URL link to your Burton Watson translation of the Lotus Sutra


http://nichiren.info/buddhism/lotussutra/


As this is a discussion forum, please remember to stay on topic and please don't just post a lot of your own ideas without getting any feedback and interactions from others.

Thank you and with kind wishes

Aloka

anata
21 Jun 12, 15:01
A lot cannot be expressed in words and one has to meditate on the meanings of sentences in the book for hours and hours and days and days.
Element has made countless quotes where the buddha thoroughly explains the meaning of his teachings but as I look at the lotus sutra I see no explanations on his teachings so please do quote his explanation for i might have missed it and because I beleive the budha does not do vague teachings and let his desciples have unclear oppinion on his teachings.

riju
22 Jun 12, 04:29
Element has made countless quotes where the buddha thoroughly explains the meaning of his teachings but as I look at the lotus sutra I see no explanations on his teachings so please do quote his explanation for i might have missed it and because I beleive the budha does not do vague teachings and let his desciples have unclear oppinion on his teachings.

Please give me some time.Aloka is guiding me to use URL site. And at present my internet is giving a lot of problems. I will quote many paras from the book in support of my statement. I am ready with the answer and i will come back to you.

riju
22 Jun 12, 07:32
The lotus sutra is not a large book therefore can you please quote the teachings on the science of existance? I wish to know how the Tathagatha explain on nothing exist in the lotus sutra. Thank you.

In reply to this letter I have started posting extracts from Book lotus sutra in support, but I am perplexed and confused as to where I should post.

Aloka
22 Jun 12, 07:50
Hi riju,

The place to post them is in this Mahayana/Vajrayana forum and not on the end of existing threads in the New Member Welcome and Introductions forum.

Here they are on a thread called 'riju'

http://www.buddhismwithoutboundaries.com/showthread.php?2866-Riju

However, as I have already given a URL link in #15 to the text you are using, there is no need to do a lot of copying and pasting, you can just refer to a chapter and page.

kind regards

Aloka

anata
23 Jun 12, 00:15
To understand this science one has to go to Lotus sutra. In this sutra Guatam explains the methods that Buddhas have utilized and he has given a solid proof of this success.

Greatest illusion that Guatam Buddha broke is that "NOTHING EXISTS".

Yes, It is a Truth that Emptiness (Nothing) is the source of creation. And everything ends in Emptiness after a period of time.What ever is in between is "Existence". But for Guatam this was the greatest stumbling block for humans.

At one time the Buddha was in Rajagriha, staying on Mount Gridhrakuta. Accompanying him were a multitude of leading monks numbering twelve thousand persons. All were arhats whose outflows had come to an end, who had no more earthly desires, who had attained what was to their advantage and had put an end to the bonds of existence, and whose minds had achieved a state of freedom.

This passage did not explain how is it nothing exist and why one should become an Arhats whose outflows had come to an end, who had no more earthly desires, who had attained what was to their advantage and had put an end to the bonds of existence, and whose minds had achieved a state of freedom. It only tells you what an Arhats is.



At that time the World-Honored One said to Shariputra, "Three times you have stated your earnest request. How can I do other than preach? Now you must listen attentively and carefully ponder. For your sake I will now analyze and explain the matter."

When he had spoken these words, there were some five thousand monks, nuns, laymen and laywomen in the assembly who immediately rose from their seats, bowed to the Buddha, and withdrew. What was the reason for this? These persons had roots of guilt that were deep and manifold, and in addition they were overbearingly arrogant. What they had not attained they supposed they had attained, what they had not understood they supposed they had understood. And because they had this failing, they did not remain where they were.

The World-Honored One was silent and did not try to detain them.

There are monks and nuns
who behave with overbearing arrogance,
laymen full of self-esteem,
laywomen who are lacking in faith.
Among the four kinds of believers, the likes of these
number five thousand.
They fail to see their own errors,
are heedless and remiss with regard to the precepts,
clinging to their shortcomings, unwilling to change.
But these persons of small wisdom have already left;
the chaff among this assembly
has departed in the face of the Buddha's authority.
These persons were of paltry merit and virtue,
incapable of receiving this Law.
This assembly is now free of branches and leaves,
made up only of those steadfast and truthful.
Shariputra, listen carefully,
Here he just explains why the arrogance left, and I cannot see where the explanation of where nothing exists lies in these passages.

An explanation should answer these questions:
If nothing exists, then why there are objects and how does it appear.
If nothing exists, then why are we able to touch objects?
If nothing exists, then why is there a thinker or the existence of the mind?

These questions are not made to be answer, but to see the difference between a person telling someone something without explanation and a person explaining why he says those things.

Here are a couple of examples on the things the Buddha explained.

However, intuitive mind is not enlightened by something else –it is self-enlightened. As soon as it is supposed to be enlightened by something else, there arise false conceptions as to this something else and then following there rises fantastic conceptions of function and process. Because of this from the perfect unity of intuitive mind, innumerable varieties have been manifested and as there are, distinctions among them so classifications among these varieties are developed. From this arise the conception of like and unlike, and then conception of non-likes and non-unlike, and the minds is thrown into a medley of bewildering puzzles which in time become attached to the mind and contaminate it. At the end, these attachments and contaminations within your mind developed the consciousness of the differences between self and the not-self of objects and thus the pure mind becomes entangled in the snarl of attachments and contaminations. Because of their defilement, there rises the disturbing manifestations of an external world, but when they are stilled, there remains only empty space, abiding in perfect unity. The world is a medley of unreal and transitory diversities that contaminate the mind and it is out of these arbitrary conceptions of phenomena that the very conception of unity and diversity arises. But the essential mind is wholly devoid of conceptions and therefore recognizes neither unity nor diversity.

Moreover, Purna, these two opposites – the pure reality of intuitive mind by its very self-nature ceaselessly drawing everything into its perfect unity and tranquility, and the unreal and transitory medley of diverse and conflicting differences forever tending to variety and multiplicities – these two opposing conception arising from the discrimination of ignorance bring into existence a vibratory motion that by reason of desire and grasping and the perpetuating influences of habit energy, accounts for all the basic conceptions of the primary elements, the solidity of earth, the fluidity of water, the heat of fire, and the motivate of wind. Amid them, it is the nature of fire to move upward and the nature of water to move downward, and from these two elements being in reciprocal development there are the manifestations of rivers, volcanos, and land. As water takes precedence, oceans appear and when fire takes precedence, continents and islands. The great ocean is also in reciprocal development with the illusive conception of fire within the mind, and reveals the fact that the blazing fire is arising continuously. The continents and island are also in reciprocal development with the false conception of water within the mind, revealing the fact that rivers and streams are ever flowing. Orr if the false conception of water is running very slowly within the mind, and the flame of fire is in a high state of activity, then there rises the high mountains and volcanoes which after all are only combinations of the false conceptions of water and fire within the mind. So if we strike flint, sparks of fire shoot out, and if we melt rocks, they will become liquid. If the false conception of water within the mind predominates over the false conception of earth, then the phenomena of grass and trees rises. As grass and trees are also false conceptions of the mind, as soon as they are compressed they become water again. Thus all these false conceptions of phenomena have their reciprocal developments and successive manifestation within the mind, and by means of causes and conditions there rises the false conception of the reciprocal continuance of the world’s existence.

Supposed, Ananda, a man sitting at ease, with hands and feet at rest, and all the bones of his body in harmony and comfort, with his mind in a state of tranquility, neither happy nor unhappy, sitting almost unconscious of his own existence. With no special purpose in mind, he rubs the palms of his two hands together and forthwith there rises from his hands perception of roughness, smoothness, coldness, warmness. Therefore, you should know that the ingredients of the perception of touch are fanciful and illusion, also. Ananda, all these fantastic feelings that rises from rubbing the hands together, come neither from the air nor from the palms of the hands. If it comes from the air, since it can touch the palms of the hands, why does it not touch the body elsewhere? What caused the selection? Or, if it comes from the palms, why does this feeling-perception not arise until the palms are pressed together? Because of its arising from the palms when they are pressed together, they naturally become conscious of each other, and when the palms are separated, the perception of touch naturally retreats into the body. Naturally there is something in the body that is passing to and fro, but how is it that the body has to wait until the hands are pressed together before it becomes conscious of a perception of touch? Therefore Ananda you should know that the perception ingredients of touch are fanciful and illusion that are neither manifested by causes and conditions, nor do they arises spontaneously from their own nature.

…..It is by means of the conflict between these two false notions of separations and contact that there is manifested the sense of touch, which perceives the notion of contact, which provides the basis of the perception of touching. If these perception of touching can be shown to be independent both of the unpleasant notion of separation and the pleasant notion of contact, then it has no substantiality of existence after all. I will now show that this to be fact, but first you should know that this perception of touches does not come from separation or contact, nor does it reveals its existence by means of a feeling of unpleasantness or pleasantness, nor does it arises spontaneously from its own sense of touch….and why? Because…………………………………… …………..

riju
23 Jun 12, 12:42
Please read chapter 2 Expedient Means again and again and meditate on it.

Guatam Buddha tells again and again in this chapter that he had to use expedient means. And he gives the reason for that.

For first 20 years Guatam taught and told his disciples whenever they sat in meditation or faced day to day problems they should remember that ultimately "Nothing exists"

and every thing passes away. By this method he could bring them to become arhats.
The extracts of teachings that you have given in your reply are of those times. Later on they were named as Hinayana teachings or Small vehicle teachings.


But at Eagle peak (after his disciples had attained Arhatship) he reversed this teaching of "Nothing Exists" to "Existant Is" for those who had accepted Him. He called that

Greater Vehicle or One Vehicle. Earlier method was named as two or three vehicles. He had to tell them that this was very necessary and otherwise they would not be able

to receive prophesy of Buddhahood. Later on this was known as Mahayana teachings.

As an arhat one gets estabilished in Emptiness (Nothing Exists) and later as a Bhoddisattva he follows the path of greater Vehicle. In greater vehicle one gets a Bullock and

a smarter cart as a reward and not a goat cart (read next chapter).
By this he means that you can live in existence at a fast speed. Your desires will get fulfilled faster and the fruits of your karmas will be also fast and this will result in growth

of faster WISDOM.
Wisdom that is needed for a bhoddhisattva path.

There is a very famous quote from Lotus sutra and it is my mantra.

"ALL BUDDHAS PAST PRESENT AND FUTURE ABIDE IN EMPTINESS AND FOLLOW THE PATH OF SUTRA OF ONE VEHCLE"

One has to become an arhat first and experience Emptiness (Nothing Exists) and this experience should always live with him.The attitude and life of that person
completly changes. This is abiding in Emptiness. After
they are firmly estabilished in emptiness, they have to live life to full; assimalating
day to day experiences without getting emotionally involved and adding to the
Wisdom.
And if one is lucky to be with a buddha ( Guatam Buddha is still present), he can
get a faster vehicle as well.

The purpose of buddhas is to get existence free from misery, death, sickness and old age.
If you read chapter 8 Prophesy of Enlightment... , there you will find a layman named Purna (Not the same Purna you have mentioned in your letter) Maitrayaniputra bringing

the existence to such a level that men can fly as well walk etc.
I tell you nothing can stop this, that our existence in future is going to be extraordinary wonderful. Guatam Buddha was not an ordinary God. Read chapter 7 Phantom city,

ther you will come to know that Guatam buddha is the 16th and last son of Buddha named " Great Universal Wisdom Excellence Thus Come One" and has been working

on our existence for probably billions of years along with the Guatma Buddha and his other 15 sons.

Please understand that this teaching is very very difficult and Guatam Buddha had to wait for 20 years. It is something that you should ponder upon both working and

meditating.

riju
23 Jun 12, 12:58
A person reaches the stage of Arhat by sitting in awareness and on all thoughts and moods by applying the Wisdom that Nothing exists or everything is impermanent or everything that passes in mind is temporary and will go away. Similarly all outer incidents which he perceives will all pass away . Thus finally he reaches the stage of arhat. This is a stage of No outflows as there is nothing inside and there are also no inflows because of Wisdom of " Nothing Exists"

In case of Bhoddhisattvas and Budhas there are No outflows but inflows remain.

The Thinker
23 Jun 12, 13:00
Can you give the links to this suttas you talk about?

and i just wonder what Buddhist tradition you are following

The thinker

riju
23 Jun 12, 13:19
Can you give the links to this suttas you talk about?

and i just wonder what Buddhist tradition you are following

The thinker


It was suggested that instead of links I have to give you reference to chapters on Lotus sutra, which I have done'. This is probably being done to save the space.

I am not even a Buddhist, but by birth I am a Hindu. Earlier I used to respect Gita , but now I am totally hooked to Lotus sutra and for me nothing exists beyond this sutra.

Aloka
23 Jun 12, 13:53
Can you give the links to this suttas you talk about?

and i just wonder what Buddhist tradition you are following

The thinker

There's a link to the Lotus Sutra in #15 of this thread.

anata
23 Jun 12, 20:08
Please understand that this teaching is very very difficult and Guatam Buddha had to wait for 20 years. It is something that you should ponder upon both working and

meditating.

The teachings are very, very difficult therefore, Just the lotus sutra alone cannot teach everything. I find the lotus sutra just a summery on his teachings just an outline on his teachings more like a reminder to what he have taught.



A person reaches the stage of Arhat by sitting in awareness and on all thoughts and moods by applying the Wisdom that Nothing exists or everything is impermanent or everything that passes in mind is temporary and will go away. Similarly all outer incidents which he perceives will all pass away . Thus finally he reaches the stage of arhat. This is a stage of No outflows as there is nothing inside and there are also no inflows because of Wisdom of " Nothing Exists"
So this is what you have learn from the lotus sutra. If it is this simple to become an arhat then there would be a Buddha existed for each eons.

One cannot put thought on nothing exist without thorough understanding the idea of nothing exist and attain arhatship. You cannot blindly do something without fully understand it and hope to gain something great from it.

The Buddha have thoroughly taught how to attain enlightment through deep meditation and it is not one page long. If you put only this teaching on meditation from various sutra on attaining greatness up to arhatship and make it into a book it would be as big as the lotus sutra.

I say this because I have read many sutras including the lotus sutra and have encountered many explanations on the meditations on attaining greatness up to arhatship.

1.
To understand this science one has to go to Lotus sutra.
The lotus sutra is not a large book therefore can you please quote the teachings on the science of existence? I wish to know how the Tathagatha explain on nothing exist in the lotus sutra. Thank you.

You claim that nothing exists, so when a person asks you to why you think like that you turn them to the lotus sutra. Now that same person has thoroughly examined the lotus sutra and cannot find the teachings on explaining to why nothing exists. All this person can find is the talk about nothing exist without the explanation.

You cannot go around and tell people nothing exists without a thorough explanation, as suggested from the story of this thread where the master smacks him.

You can but it will make you a false preacher unless you can back up your idea in which you have not yet and so I ask you again not to assume you are a false preacher. How is it nothing exists? Please explain.

riju
26 Jun 12, 11:43
I had been out on holiday for 3 days. Now have come back and I have read your letter. A lot of saints have affirmed " Nothing Exists". All their explanations you must have read. It has to experienced but you want me to talk about it from my own experience. In fact you also took out a para from Guatam Buddha" suta about rubbing of palms etc.

I promise I will try to explain "Nothing Exists" for next three days from my experience. But those experiences are mine own and I will not be able to give reference to Guatam Buddha

Lotus sutra talks about Emptiness or Suniata. Why does he do it again and again? What is the difference between Nothing exists or Emptiness? Simply because when nothing exists than emptiness comes in space.

Guatam Buddha has explained that something inside us perceives that is why we see things outside. When we reach a stage in meditation beyond perceiving, we shall experience Nothing alround. In meditation we can go beyond perceiving and if we go again and again and go beyond perceiving. We start realising that Nothing EXists. Because this develops into a Wisdom and this Wisdom comes in front of us when we see outside world with our senses. Our reaction is as if nothing exists or nothing is happening. There is no effort to be put in. All your inward intelligent beings (and they are many) will do their work of your existence like eating, walking etc. on their own as they are below the perceiving range and they will react automatically.

At this state there are no inflows in the person who is in that stage. He is an arhat. He is always at peace.

I will continue to explain this tomorrow from another point of view. In fact Nothing Exists is an absolute Truth.
Even when we advance in meditation beyond senses, logic, Wisdom, still beyond and beyond. We will realise in deepest of depth that nothing exists... till tomorrow..

Aloka
26 Jun 12, 12:14
Buddhism doesn't teach that nothing exists, riju. I think you might be completely misunderstanding teachings on anatta and emptiness.

If you wish to learn about the teachings of the Buddha, then the Lotus Sutra definately isn't a good place for a beginner to start .

riju
26 Jun 12, 12:48
Buddhism doesn't teach that nothing exists, riju. I think you might be completely misunderstanding teachings on anatta and emptiness.

If you wish to learn about the teachings of the Buddha, then the Lotus Sutra definately isn't a good place for a beginner to start .

Ok and thanks for the advice.

Tony
26 Jun 12, 18:13
Maybe look at Emptiness as 'being Pure'. That is our essence, and absolute reality. Our nature is Knowing, relative reality. The two are a unity, the outcome is compassion.

No thing exists, means they do not exist by themselves. All things in the universe are created by a cause and conditions. They only seem to exist.

if a 'thing' truly existed, it would never not exist..it would be constant forever. However all 'things' have a beginning, a middle and an end. So cannot be said to truly exist.

So what truly exists?

Well, our Essence cannot be said to exist or not exist, but is constant. That inner space, and outer space seem to be the only constants.
So this Essence is the only reality.

Though no thing truly exists, like emotions, which is all part of relative seemingly real truth, it's essence is Emptiness. This is how all of phenomena becomes our symbolic teacher, therefore the two truths work very nicely together.

Essence is Emptiness is pure, however anything can arise in it, and dissolve back into emptiness. Like the white of this screen!



Tony

Element
26 Jun 12, 21:44
A lot of saints have affirmed " Nothing Exists". In fact Nothing Exists is an absolute Truth.
hi

for me, the term that "nothing exists" can be subject to many interpretations. i would tend more towards "nothing of any particular significance" exists

there are those (unimportant) occassions in the original scriptures, where buddha said: "to those that see, there is nothing"

but my interpretation of such phrases is Buddha was saying: "there is nothing of any significance or substance to be concerned with"

regards

;D



form that is past, future or present; internal or external; blatant or subtle; common or sublime; far or near. To him — seeing it, observing it & appropriately examining it — it would appear empty, void, without substance: for what substance would there be in form?

What substance would there be in a water bubble? In the same way, a monk sees, observes & appropriately examines any feeling that is past, future or present; internal or external; blatant or subtle; common or sublime; far or near. To him — seeing it, observing it & appropriately examining it — it would appear empty, void, without substance: for what substance would there be in feeling?

What substance would there be in a mirage? In the same way, a monk sees, observes & appropriately examines any perception that is past, future or present; internal or external; blatant or subtle; common or sublime; far or near. To him — seeing it, observing it & appropriately examining it — it would appear empty, void, without substance: for what substance would there be in perception?

What substance would there be in a banana tree? In the same way, a monk sees, observes & appropriately examines any fabrications that are past, future or present; internal or external; blatant or subtle; common or sublime; far or near. To him — seeing them, observing them & appropriately examining them — they would appear empty, void, without substance: for what substance would there be in fabrications?

What substance would there be in a magic trick? In the same way, a monk sees, observes & appropriately examines any consciousness that is past, future or present; internal or external; blatant or subtle; common or sublime; far or near. To him — seeing it, observing it & appropriately examining it — it would appear empty, void, without substance: for what substance would there be in consciousness?

Seeing thus, the well-instructed disciple of the noble ones grows disenchanted with form, disenchanted with feeling, disenchanted with perception, disenchanted with fabrications, disenchanted with consciousness. Disenchanted, he grows dispassionate. Through dispassion, he's released. With release there's the knowledge, 'Released.' He discerns that 'Birth is ended, the holy life fulfilled, the task done. There is nothing further for this world.'

Phena Sutta: Foam (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn22/sn22.095.than.html)

Element
26 Jun 12, 21:47
I promise I will try to explain "Nothing Exists" for next three days from my experience.
sure. i look forward to what you have to share :hands:

viniketa
26 Jun 12, 21:49
There is similar understanding in the Lankavatra Sutra:


Lord of Lanka, beings are appearances, they are like figures painted on the wall, they have no sensibility [or consciousness]. Lord of Lanka, all that is in the world is devoid of work and action because all things have no reality, and there is nothing heard, nothing hearing. Lord of Lanka, all that is in the world is like an image magically transformed. This is not comprehended by the philosophers and the ignorant. Lord of Lanka, he who thus sees things, is the one who sees truthfully. Those who see things otherwise walk in discrimination; as they depend on discrimination, they cling to dualism. It is like seeing one's own image reflected in a mirror, or one's own shadow in the water, or in the moonlight, or seeing one's shadow in the house, or hearing an echo in the valley. People grasping their own shadows of discrimination (21) uphold the discrimination of dharma and adharma and, failing to carry out the abandonment of the dualism, they go on discriminating and never attain tranquillity, By tranquillity is meant oneness (ekagra), and oneness gives birth to the highest Samadhi, which is gained by entering into the womb of Tathagatahood, which is the realm of noble wisdom realised in one's inmost self....

Further, Mahāmati, on account of the cessation of the six Vijñānas the ignorant and simple-minded look for nihilism, and on account of their not understanding the Ālayavijñāna they have eternalism. The primary limit of the discrimination of their own minds (243) is unknown, Mahāmati. Emancipation is obtained when this discrimination of Mind itself ceases. With the abandonment of the fourfold habit-energy the abandonment of all faults takes place.

The link: http://lirs.ru/do/lanka_eng/lanka-nondiacritical.htm

Namaste

riju
27 Jun 12, 08:13
I am happy that a lot of Guatam Buddha's teachings are coming out for explanation of "Nothing Exists". I am hereby adding my penny worth of knowledge.


Science has advanced like anything. The search went macro and micro.

In macro search with electronic radio powerful telescopes, satelites, computer linkups they traced the history of origin of our galaxi. I am giving the summary in this letter

and refering you to two books both for micro and macro results.

1. "Code name God" and "Cosmic detective". The name of the author is "Mani Bhaumik"

These books explain that both micro and macro researches have ended in the start of matter, life to Emptiness. The books are in lay man language and are very interesting.

Here is the summary if you can not lay your hands on the books.

1. They located a spot where light waves were bending. Later they named it as blackhole.
2. After some time two huge globes emerged from this blackhole.
3. Again after some time these two globes emitted rays alround and those rays intervined to form a carpet sort of structure.
4. Later still stars started emerging out at the junctions.
5. Planets (earth) and life emerged later.

Similarly research at micro level came down to element to molecule to atom to electrones, positrons, neutrones, Nanos and what not ending in emptiness or total

disappearance .

The conclusion of scientists was there is some substance like Emptiness (Beyond senses) which exists at all levels at smallest and at biggest size and everything goes

beyond senses , instruments etc.

Scientists did not stop at this.
They further found out that the patterns of stars that emerged out of black holes was so very very....very accurate that even if there was an unbalance of micro micro level,

the universe could have been destroyed by collapsing or by scattering. They started feeling that there must be extraordinary intelligence in the black holes that has designed

the universe.

Conclusion is that Emptiness ( beyond senses) is everywhere and matter, life comes out of it but beyond lies the intelligence.

This leads us further to utilise our intelligence, logic, Wisdom and meditation to be used as research tools towards "Nothing Exists".

In further writing I shall come back for support to meditation, vedas, Buddhas, for research on "Nothing Exists" and then write why we have to ultimately go beyond to

"EXISTENCE" and why by faith and not by birth I have become disciple of Lotus sutra and not of Hindu, christian, Muslim or any other God.

Of course with the permission from this site controllers.

The Thinker
27 Jun 12, 09:31
"EXISTENCE" and why by faith and not by birth I have become disciple of Lotus sutra and not of Hindu, christian, Muslim or any other God.

I would say you cant become a disciple of the Lotus sutra. you can become disciple of a Buddha and follow his or hers teachings.

The thinker

Aloka
27 Jun 12, 09:47
In further writing I shall come back for support to meditation, vedas, Buddhas, for research on "Nothing Exists" and then write why we have to ultimately go beyond to

"EXISTENCE" and why by faith and not by birth I have become disciple of Lotus sutra and not of Hindu, christian, Muslim or any other God.

Of course with the permission from this site controllers.

Hi riju,

If you are writing shorter, more manageable posts which relate to Buddhist teachings and also if you are having constructive discussions with other members about them , then that is fine.

A little suggestion meant kindly -- its rather pointless to just keep writing your own ideas here without any connective feedback and debate with others about the actual content of what you've written, or without comments from you regarding the details of whatever other members have presented to you in response.


with kind regards

Aloka

riju
27 Jun 12, 10:43
I would say you cant become a disciple of the Lotus sutra. you can become disciple of a Buddha and follow his or hers teachings.

The thinker

In the first stage I got attached to Lotus sutra and then total reverence developed towards Guatam buddha.But as far as I am concerned all this has nothing to do with buddhism as a religion. So it is not necessary to call myself a buddhist. But I would not mind if any one assumes that I am a Buddhist.

The Thinker
27 Jun 12, 10:57
I not sure i understand you. You mean Lotus sutra dont have anything about buddhism or that you just like reading it but dont think buddhism is somthing for you?

The thinker

riju
27 Jun 12, 12:15
In my view Lotus sutra is scientific book. In times of Guatam Buddha 2500 years back whatever scientific language was available, he has used in the book but most of it is in parables due to mental limitations of human beings. Guatam buddha is the greatest scientist ever born or ever to be born in this earth nay in this galaxi nay in this universe till another bhoddisattvas rises as Budha. Religion has nothing to do with this . Anyhow I repeat that this is my view.

The Thinker
27 Jun 12, 12:25
Buddhism was ment to be a Cultivating way fpr humans to get to Nibbana. later on it has been made in to a religion by the people.

The thinker

Aloka
27 Jun 12, 15:02
Regarding the Lotus Sutra, this is a quote from Ajahn Sujato the respected former Theravada Buddhist Abbot of Santi Forest Monastery







Is the Lotus Sutra authentic?


One of our commenters asked about whether the Lotus Sutra was considered authentic according to the Theravadin view.

To answer this from the traditional Theravadin point of view, all the Mahayana Sutras are inauthentic in the sense that they were not spoken by the Buddha. Historically, Theravada has tended to take a dim view of Mahayana, regarding it as a mere degeneration of the pure teachings.

That the Lotus Sutra and other Mahayana Sutras were not spoken by the Buddha is unanimously supported by modern scholarship. I don’t know of a single academic in the last 150 years who has argued otherwise. The basic historical background is given in Wikipedia.

The upshot is that the Lotus Sutra was composed over a period of time, or in a number of stages. The oldest sources probably stem from a little before the common era, and it was finalized around 200 CE. This makes it one of the earliest Mahayana Sutras (and it is even argued that the earliest form of the sutra may not have even been Mahayana).

So there is no doubt that the Lotus Suta and other Mahayana sutras are historically late, dating from many centuries after the Buddha.

When reading them as historical documents, rather than seeing them as spoken by the Buddha, we should see them as the response and articulation by Buddhists of the past to the conditions that they were in. They were addressing matters of concern for them, asking how the Dhamma is to be applied in these situations. Of course the same is true of many Theravdin texts, although in the case of the early Suttas and Vinaya there is still a core that probably stems from the Buddha himself.

Why were the Mahayana Sutras phrased as if spoken literally by the Buddha? This is a difficult question, and there is unlikely to be one answer.

Partly it was just how the literary form evolved. But I suspect, given the visionary nature of many Mahayanist texts, that they often stemmed from meditation experiences; visions of the Buddha, memories of ‘teachings’ received while in samadhi. Perhaps the authors of these texts believed that the Buddha was really present to them in some sense – and this is indeed the theme of many Mahayana sutras. Or perhaps they more humbly believed that they had gained insight into the Dhamma in some direct way.



http://sujato.wordpress.com/2011/10/18/is-the-lotus-sutra-authentic/







:hands:

riju
27 Jun 12, 16:30
Regarding the Lotus Sutra, this is a quote from Ajahn Sujato the respected former Theravada Buddhist Abbot of Santi Forest Monastery








:hands:

Guatam Buddha gave all importance to Theravadin studies. As because only by this path can one have glimpse of Suniata (Emptiness) or can become an arhat suitable for Mahayan sutras. For 20 years he kept the Lotus sutra secret.

A theravadin cannot experience the Mahayana sutras, he has to have a blind faith.

It is an unfair question.
If a true Mahayanist challanges the Theravadin and his studies, Theravadin can get hurt and Mahayanist may lose one possible future member.
And if a true Mahayanist agrees with theravadin then Mahayanist knows that he is hiding the truth.

Abhaya
27 Jun 12, 16:57
If a true Mahayanist challanges the Theravadin and his studies, Theravadin can get hurt and Mahayanist may lose one possible future member.
And if a true Mahayanist agrees with theravadin then Mahayanist knows that he is hiding the truth.

This does not do justice to Mahayana, nor Theravada.

It has to be acknowledged that although the Lotus Sutra is a useful treatise on skillful means, it is a work of pseudopigraphy and contains a number of assertions inconsistent with the Buddha's earliest teachings as preserved in the Pali Nikayas and Chinese Agamas.



Historically, Theravada has tended to take a dim view of Mahayana, regarding it as a mere degeneration of the pure teachings.


This is unfortunate, as I'm of the conviction that Mahayana and Theravada students/practitioners can learn much from one another about the nature of Suññatā/Śūnyatā through respectful exchange.

In the spirit of the original post, Dokuon Roshi's use of the bamboo pipe is a plea for the return to practice, as opposed to obsession with philosophy.

Aloka
27 Jun 12, 17:21
For 20 years he kept the Lotus sutra secret.


The story goes that the sutra was hidden in a naga or dragon realm until it was redisovered 500 years later. Its obvious that it was written by later writers and surely its time to accept modern scholarly research on the subject.

Aloka
27 Jun 12, 17:32
This is unfortunate, as I'm of the conviction that Mahayana and Theravada students/practitioners can learn much from one another about the nature of Suññatā/Śūnyatā through respectful exchange.

Ajahn Sujato said "Historically" - and it is not about himself ,or about traditions not learning from each other, as some of his other writings can reveal. ( nor has he mentioned the historical attitude of some Mahayana schools to Theravada either).

Whatever school we belong or don't belong to, putting aside fantasy and superstition doesn't affect our meditation practice in the here and now, nor an experiential as well as intellectual understanding of sunnata, nor our attitude to other practitioners.

Not all Mahayana schools use the Lotus sutra in their teachings anyway.

Element
27 Jun 12, 21:22
Regarding the Lotus Sutra, this is a quote from Ajahn Sujato the respected former Theravada Buddhist Abbot of Santi Forest Monastery
"respected" is a loaded word. why did we not simply write "the former" rather than "the respected former"? respected by whom? Ajahn Sujato's historical dogma is often not respected

apart from that; is this not a Mahayana sub-forum, where sutras such as the Lotus Sutra, serve as the foundation of faith & refuge?

:read:

Element
27 Jun 12, 21:28
Guatam buddha is the greatest scientist ever born or ever to be born in this earth nay in this galaxi nay in this universe till another bhoddisattvas rises as Budha. Religion has nothing to do with this .
sure. many share this scientific view of buddhism :hands:

Aloka
27 Jun 12, 21:37
"respected" is a loaded word. why did we not simply write "the former" rather than "the respected former"? respected by whom? Ajahn Sujato's historical dogma is often not respected


:read:

I write 'respected ' because he is respected by others, including myself - and I don't take instructions from you about who I apply that word to , Element.

Who do you respect who's a living Buddhist teacher ? Anyone ?

Its also best not to comment when you haven't even read the Lotus Sutra yourself.

Element
27 Jun 12, 22:12
Who do you respect who's a living Buddhist teacher ? Anyone ?
i suppose this is a Mahayana sub-forum; where lamaism (i.e., guru worship) is acceptable. sorry, my bad... :dunce:

Yuan
27 Jun 12, 22:13
Maybe riju can explain to us why 'Lotus Sutra does not exist', 'Ajahn Sujato does not exist', 'Ajahn Sujato's article on authenticity of Lotus Sutra does not exist' and therefore, 'Nothing exists?"

Because I really want to know.

Element
27 Jun 12, 22:15
Maybe riju can explain to us why 'Lotus Sutra does not exist'...
possibly non-sequitur, as the Lotus Sutra could be like a finger pointing to the moon. does a 'finger' really exist? :dontknow:

Yuan
27 Jun 12, 22:16
possibly non-sequitur, as the Lotus Sutra could be like a finger pointing to the moon. does a 'finger' really exist? :dontknow:

Do you need it to exist?

Element
27 Jun 12, 22:18
what is this "you"? is there a tangible "you" that can be found? please show this "you"? :dontknow:

Yuan
27 Jun 12, 22:20
Here:
what is this "you"? is there a tangible "you" that can be found? please show this "you"? :dontknow:

Element
27 Jun 12, 22:27
Here:
where? there is fleetingness. nothing tangible there that is 'something'

Yuan
27 Jun 12, 22:43
Here:
where? there is fleetingness. nothing tangible there that is 'something'
Or should I blindfold you so you will see better?

riju
28 Jun 12, 04:36
Abhaya,

If you can come out with whatever inconsistencies you feel are there, this will be a good forum to discuss the same.
I feel I can come out with some solutions

riju
28 Jun 12, 04:43
I write 'respected ' because he is respected by others, including myself - and I don't take instructions from you about who I apply that word to , Element.

Who do you respect who's a living Buddhist teacher ? Anyone ?

Its also best not to comment when you haven't even read the Lotus Sutra yourself.

I have eaten, slept,lived day and night with Lotus sutra for last 18 years, I do not feel disrespected even if one is against Lotus sutra. We are all here to learn as well as to enjoy the forum. As per my promise here I want to write for the third day on "Nothing Exists".

riju
28 Jun 12, 04:47
possibly non-sequitur, as the Lotus Sutra could be like a finger pointing to the moon. does a 'finger' really exist? :dontknow:


"Nothing exists" and yet "Existent IS" and hence we all including lotus sutra exists. I have already explained in detail all this, you have to reread this whole link.

riju
28 Jun 12, 08:06
NOTHING EXISTS-3

Nothing exists is a universal truth. Many saints in the past have observed this truth

from different places. They have all named it differently. A few names are
1.Advait
2 Suniata
3.Emptiness
4. Tatav
5. Dao etc.

When I went into details, saints gave following description

1. It is everywhere (even scientist have confirmed it).
2. It is nowhere yet everywhere.
3. It is totally powerless yet all the power of the universe comes out of it
4.It is so small that even pin point is extremely large for it.
5 Yet it is infinite and billions of universes will be a minor part of this
6. It gives birth to billions of variety of things but it disconnects itself from this all.
7. All attempts and methods fail to get a link with this Nothingness. If persistent

attempts are made the one who does it disappears in this sea of Nothingness.(

This is how an Arhat does}
8. Some say this is God
9. Others say that it is a covering behind which God is there.

Hence Guatam Buddha never commented on God, if repeatedly asked he said

" THAT GOD IS NOT RELEVENT TO OUR EXISTENCE"

AND HE HAS PRODUCED SCIENCE OF EXISTENCE IN LOTUS SUTRA WITH A

PURPOSE TO FREE THIS EXISTENCE FROM DUKKHA, OLD AGE, MISERY,

SICKNESS ETC.

Hinayana, Therawadin, Dzogchen are the necessary base from which this science

rises.

The Thinker
28 Jun 12, 08:16
I think you also need to read the other Buddhist text Riju. To only stick to the lotus sutra is maybe not a wise thing.
I think you also know that Hinayana and Theravada Buddhism is words Buddha never used, this terms have come in to Buddhism on later years. In Buddhism it is many school or ways if you like. it is only a few of them who take Shakyamuni as the founder if this schools.

The thinker

Aloka
28 Jun 12, 08:41
Nothing exists is a universal truth.

Hi riju,

This definately isn't meant to be rude - but I'm wondering if maybe you're misunderstanding what you've been reading - because English probably isn't your first language if you're a Hindu ?

An observation of the fact that nothing exists independently of anything else, for example, doesn't actually mean that nothing exists

kind regards

Aloka

Pegembara
28 Jun 12, 08:44
Hi forum friends,

This Zen story seems curious:
Yamaoka Tesshu, as a young student of Zen, visited one master after another. He called upon Dokuon of Shokoku.
Desiring to show his attainment, he said:*

"The mind, Buddha, and sentient beings, after all, do not exist. The true nature of phenomena is emptiness. There is no realization, no delusion, no sage, no mediocrity. There is no giving and nothing to be received."

Dokuon, who was smoking quietly, said nothing. Suddenly he whacked Yamaoka with his bamboo pipe. This made the youth quite angry.

"If nothing exists", inquired Dokuon, "where did this anger come from?"

Any thoughts about it?

;D

It is not that nothing exists. But with body making contact with bamboo pipe, nerve impulses travel to the brain and is interpreted as pain. Pain gives rise to aversion. Pain also gives rise to thoughts. Thoughts give rise anger.

A martial artist will accept that getting hit is expected.

A student may feel grateful to the teacher for the lesson or not if he thinks he is not respected.

Are thoughts reliable?

viniketa
28 Jun 12, 09:05
I'm wondering if maybe you're misunderstanding what you've been reading - because English probably isn't your first language if you're a Hindu ?

This may be the case. "Nothing exists", as a statement in English, is an extreme form of nihilism. This brought Nāgārjuna ("respected" as a lineage transmitter in Theravada, Mahāyāna, Vajrayāna and Ekayāna) to the Mūlamadhyamakakārikā and the Śūnyatā of Śūnyatā.

Even "emptiness" is empty of all but compassion.

P.S., Apologies, the Mūlamadhyamakakārikā is not available on the web, so no link. :(

Yuan
28 Jun 12, 09:11
Riju doesn't really need my help, but I thought he made it clear that "we all exist" in this post


"Nothing exists" and yet "Existent IS" and hence we all including lotus sutra exists. I have already explained in detail all this, you have to reread this whole link.

So I conclude that his 'Nothing exists" is like "Emptiness" that is not really 'empty.'

I, for one, will remain patient for Riju to reveal all of his cards on the table.

viniketa
28 Jun 12, 09:28
"Emptiness" that is not really 'empty.'

Once empty, mind becomes open; open hearts lead to compassion. :hug:

Element
28 Jun 12, 11:42
An observation of the fact that nothing exists independently of anything else, for example, doesn't actually mean that nothing exists
i do not see any "things" existing, except maybe Nibbana, which is probably not best described as a "thing". thus, there seems to be "no-thing" or "nothing"

for example, "computer" is just a label. there is no whole computer. just a collection of parts that digress infinitely. due to the infinite digression of parts, elements & atoms that make up the "computer", no actual thing can be actually identified

the only "thing" that can be substantially identified is the peace of Nibbana. when the conditioned things & conditioned mental constructs fall away, the peace of Nibbana is always there, with certainty & complete reliability

;D

alfred
28 Jun 12, 20:29
Does emptiness have inherent existance?:cool:

Ngagpa
28 Jun 12, 20:40
Does emptiness have inherent existance?:cool:
Shentong Rangtong distinction....:hug:

Aloka
28 Jun 12, 20:55
Shentong Rangtong distinction.


And for those who have no idea what "Shentong" and "Rangtong" are :






Shentong and Rangtong


The 16th-century Bengali scholar, Taranatha (so-named after his devotion to Tara,) was not only a great historian and practitioner who in later life traveled to teach in Mongolia, but was one of the foremost proponents of a view associated with the now absorbed Jonang school of Himalayan Buddhism. This denomination bridged the Kadampa (or, Gelugpa) and the Kagyupa views.

The former promotes the rang-tong (self-emptiness) doctrine as expounded by Nagarjuna, Chandrakirti, and other Indian teachers. The latter holds to shen-tong (other-emptiness.)

Shen-tong asserts that Emptiness, "in dispelling the illusive relative truths of the world, reveals an ineffable transcendental reality with positive attributes."

Rang-tong holds that Emptiness is "merely the elimination of falsely imagined projections upon the relative truths of the world and does not imply anything else."

Stephen Batchelor says further that "While such distinctions may strike us today as theological hairsplitting, in Tibet they became (and still are) crucial articles of faith."

Lama Karma Sherab of the Jamgon Kongtrul labrang (Pullahari, Nepal) insists that it must be emphasized that ultimately there is no difference between the two.


http://www.khandro.net/doctrine_philo_views.htm

Bopshibobshibop
28 Jun 12, 21:15
Immanuel Kant pointed out that we can't really observe the world as it is. We are only aware of what our sense organs tell us. Our sense organs are both doors and barriers to knowledge of the real world. He invented the word "noumena" to refer to things in the real world. The world as we perceive it, he called "phenomena." This was over 200 years ago. Those old guys were pretty smart.

Arthur Schopenhauer lived two generations after Kant. He did not entirely disagree with Kant, but he observed that we can never know anything about the noumena, so noumena are a kind of fairy tale. We're stuck inside of phenomena, and have to live with that. Phenomena are neither real nor unreal.

Schopenhauer was a student of Buddhism, and agreed with most of Buddhist doctrine. His observations about reality are kind of "middle way." It doesn't exactly exist, but it doesn't not-exist, either.

After Schopenhauer, modern philosophers pretty much gave up on this question. It seems to go about as far as we can go in that direction.

Contemporary philosophy is largely linguistic. When we ask "What is real?" we think we know what "real" means, but we don't. When we define our terms rigorously, the question, "What is real?" disappears. I think this point of view also fits pretty comfortably with Buddhist doctrine. (Have I been pedantic again?)

Anyone else on board? Any grad students or philosophers? I'm no philosophy expert, might have gotten some of the details wrong. Please feel free to correct me.


Bopshibobshibop

Aloka
28 Jun 12, 21:24
Immanuel Kant pointed out that we can't really observe the world as it is. We are only aware of what our sense organs tell us. Our sense organs are both doors and barriers to knowledge of the real world. He invented the word "noumena" to refer to things in the real world. The world as we perceive it, he called "phenomena." This was over 200 years ago. Those old guys were pretty smart.

Arthur Schopenhauer lived two generations after Kant. He did not entirely disagree with Kant, but he observed that we can never know anything about the noumena, so noumena are a kind of fairy tale. We're stuck inside of phenomena, and have to live with that. Phenomena are neither real nor unreal.

Schopenhauer was a student of Buddhism, and agreed with most of Buddhist doctrine. His observations about reality are kind of "middle way." It doesn't exactly exist, but it doesn't not-exist, either.

After Schopenhauer, modern philosophers pretty much gave up on this question. It seems to go about as far as we can go in that direction.

Contemporary philosophy is largely linguistic. When we ask "What is real?" we think we know what "real" means, but we don't. When we define our terms rigorously, the question, "What is real?" disappears. I think this point of view also fits pretty comfortably with Buddhist doctrine. (Have I been pedantic again?)

Anyone else on board? Any grad students or philosophers? I'm no philosophy expert, might have gotten some of the details wrong. Please feel free to correct me.




I think perhaps discussing western philosophy is getting even more diverted away from the OP #1 (which is a Zen quote) than we have done already.


.

Abhaya
28 Jun 12, 21:37
The Buddha did not teach the existence of noumena. His was a phenomenological approach, as when he taught about "The All". His teachings applied to things observable, empirical, testable, experienced for oneself.



Sabba Sutta (SN 35.23)

"Monks, I will teach you the All. Listen & pay close attention. I will speak."

"As you say, lord," the monks responded.

The Blessed One said, "What is the All? Simply the eye & forms, ear & sounds, nose & aromas, tongue & flavors, body & tactile sensations, intellect & ideas. This, monks, is called the All. [1] Anyone who would say, 'Repudiating this All, I will describe another,' if questioned on what exactly might be the grounds for his statement, would be unable to explain, and furthermore, would be put to grief. Why? Because it lies beyond range."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn35/sn35.023.than.html


Something exists but only conventionally. Nothing exists absolutely.

According to Kant, the noumena is unknowable, a thing-in-itself, a transcendent object that can never be experienced directly (Critique of Pure Reason). This is not in accord with the Buddha's teachings, as there is no noumena to speak of, and even if there were, it would be irrelevant to understanding the origin and cessation of suffering.

I cannot comment on Schopenhauer.

However, as for linguistic philosophy, there are some similarities between Wittgenstein's work and the Lankavatara and Diamond Sutras in their linguistic approach to what "exists" and does not. The logical positivists were very experience-focused, with no need for metaphysics (the study of the nature of reality, or "existence"), a kind of Nagarjuna-esque approach. According to them, that Something or Nothing exists (capital S and N) is not to be obsessed over.

Esho
28 Jun 12, 21:45
, and even if there were, it would be irrelevant to understanding the origin and cessation of suffering.

Of course. This is what is important to those who sincerely practice the teachings of Buddha.

:peace:

Esho
28 Jun 12, 21:51
Immanuel Kant pointed out that we can't really observe the world as it is. We are only aware of [...]

I highly recommend you, Bop, to have a look at the Khanda doctrine of Buddha and try to give up all that philosophical :papanca:

The Khandha Samyutta (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/index.html#khandha)

;)

Abhaya
28 Jun 12, 21:54
Some simsapa leaves to lay beside Dokuon's bamboo pipe.



Simsapa Sutta (SN 56.31)

Once the Blessed One was staying at Kosambi in the simsapa[1] forest. Then, picking up a few simsapa leaves with his hand, he asked the monks, "What do you think, monks: Which are more numerous, the few simsapa leaves in my hand or those overhead in the simsapa forest?"

"The leaves in the hand of the Blessed One are few in number, lord. Those overhead in the simsapa forest are more numerous."

"In the same way, monks, those things that I have known with direct knowledge but have not taught are far more numerous [than what I have taught]. And why haven't I taught them? Because they are not connected with the goal, do not relate to the rudiments of the holy life, and do not lead to disenchantment, to dispassion, to cessation, to calm, to direct knowledge, to self-awakening, to Unbinding. That is why I have not taught them.

"And what have I taught? 'This is stress... This is the origination of stress... This is the cessation of stress... This is the path of practice leading to the cessation of stress': This is what I have taught. And why have I taught these things? Because they are connected with the goal, relate to the rudiments of the holy life, and lead to disenchantment, to dispassion, to cessation, to calm, to direct knowledge, to self-awakening, to Unbinding. This is why I have taught them.

"Therefore your duty is the contemplation, 'This is stress... This is the origination of stress... This is the cessation of stress.' Your duty is the contemplation, 'This is the path of practice leading to the cessation of stress.'"

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn56/sn56.031.than.html


:hands:

riju
29 Jun 12, 07:30
Emptiness is an absolute Truth as per Guatam Buddha in Lotus sutra. He does not say this directly, but the Efforts the Buddhas put in is a clear indication of the above statement. I can elaborate this.

The Thinker
29 Jun 12, 08:03
How do you know what Buddha was thinking riju?
And how can you be sure emptiness is absolute?

How can you be sure Buddha saw the absolute truth? And how can you say that Buddha saw everything?
Maybe there are Buddhas who see more truth then he did or the see more in the macro and in cosmos.

The thinker

riju
29 Jun 12, 09:12
How do you know what Buddha was thinking riju?
And how can you be sure emptiness is absolute?

How can you be sure Buddha saw the absolute truth? And how can you say that Buddha saw everything?
Maybe there are Buddhas who see more truth then he did or the see more in the macro and in cosmos.


There is only one Buddha , when Guatam Buddha became a Buddha,
all Buddhas of past became one with Him and His total knowledge was sum of knowledge of all buddhas of past.
In Lotus sutra He mentions that the knowledge that He has is so much that knowledge of all creation from past gathered together is still short of His knowledge.
And I have to write in detail later as to why Emptiness is absolute and Universal Truth as per Guatam Buddha

The Thinker
29 Jun 12, 09:20
There is only one Buddha

This i am not agree about. There is hundreds or maybe millions of Buddhas who had become enlighten in the history of this planet we are on. But it is not often they come to teach just like the hostirical Buddha did.

Before Buddhism it have been many Cultivating ways and all of them could lead to the followers in to enlighten beings or Buddhas if you like.

The thinker

riju
29 Jun 12, 10:55
This i am not agree about. There is hundreds or maybe millions of Buddhas who had become enlighten in the history of this planet we are on. But it is not often they come to teach just like the hostirical Buddha did.

Before Buddhism it have been many Cultivating ways and all of them could lead to the followers in to enlighten beings or Buddhas if you like.

The thinker

Buddhas go to Nirvan after completing their work . This Nirvan is a central pool of cosmic energy having Wisdoms which backs the next coming Buddha. Our planet is lucky to have one Buddha.Millions of other planets are born and die without having a Buddha . All this is what I have understood from Lotus sutra.

The Thinker
29 Jun 12, 11:34
;D Great

riju
29 Jun 12, 12:32
ABSOLUTE EMPTINESS

Emptiness creates life anywhere and everywhere.
But it gives it time after which the life goes back into emptiness.
It is like waves in a sea. The waves rise and then fall back.

The Lotus sutra totally surprised me when it said that many important past

Buddhas were two legged beings. I take it that he is refering to human beings.

Many Rishis and saints in past understood the power of emptiness.
Many must have tried to survive, but failed before Buddhas came.
The existence was full of dukkha and none was finding releif.

But some great ones in the past could reach a position of an arhat and got away

from the clutches of dukkha.

But this arhat was a one of greatest mirage and all in the past would fall back into

emptiness. The reason was that when one tastes freedom from dukkha, one is in

total peace of anand (happiness). And the Time (the unrelenting Kal) takes him

back to emptiness.The Arhat does not want to come out of that state. Other

reason is that he thinks that there is no alternative as this emptiness is a form of

God.But it was still considered a success as he is the one who escaped.

UNTIL A WISER ONE CAME. The first two legged Buddha understood the

problem and found out the solution. THE LOTUS SUTRA GIVES THAT

SOLUTION.

I have brought out the problem for all of you and I have told you that solution was

found out and it is in lotus sutra. I hope some of you are curious to search and

find out the solution. I think here I should not put my words before you.

Buddhas have not totally succeeded against emptiness but it is claim by Buddhas

in lotus sutra that they have almost done it.

Do these words not prove that Emptiness is all prevading Absolute Truth.

The Thinker
29 Jun 12, 13:03
When you say You have brought out the problem for us all, How do you know your word are the Ultimate truth? Are you an enlighten Buddha you self? You sometimes write like you have the ultimate truth.

The thinker

riju
29 Jun 12, 15:56
When you say You have brought out the problem for us all, How do you know your word are the Ultimate truth? Are you an enlighten Buddha you self? You sometimes write like you have the ultimate truth.

The thinker

Does writing confidently prove that I am enlightened?
I am trying to test whether my writings are logical or not.
In fact i expect that my writings may bring out many questions on the forum and then the real test will begin.
Once the curiosity starts, the questions and dialogue will start flowing.

The Thinker
29 Jun 12, 17:11
Your writing is no problem for me, reason i keep asking question back is because i try to understand your thinking and your understanding of the Dhamma.

If i have offended you, then i am sorry.

The thinker.

riju
30 Jun 12, 08:35
Your writing is no problem for me, reason i keep asking question back is because i try to understand your thinking and your understanding of the Dhamma.

If i have offended you, then i am sorry.

The thinker.


There is/ was no feeling of offend in my reply to you. May be I am not good in selecting proper replies.

The Thinker
30 Jun 12, 08:44
Would be nice to see you reply in other threads too riju, and i will look forward to see you writing more here.

Friendly from The thinker

Element
30 Jun 12, 11:00
It is like waves in a sea. The waves rise and then fall back.

emptiness has been explained as follows:


The unrovoked (unshakeable) liberation of mind is declared the foremost. And this liberation of mind is empty of passion, empty of aversion, empty of delusion.

MN 43


His liberation , being founded on truth, does not fluctuate, for whatever is deceptive is false; Unbinding — the undeceptive — is true. Thus a monk so endowed is endowed with the highest determination for truth, for this — Unbinding, the undeceptive — is the highest noble truth.

MN 140

Element
30 Jun 12, 11:02
Emptiness creates life anywhere and everywhere.
although emptiness has been explained as liberation, the creation of life has been explained as occurring as follows:


Bhikkhus, the conception of an embryo in a womb takes place through the union of three things.
Here, there is the union of the mother and father, but it is not the mother’s season, and the gandhabba [sperm]
is not present - in this case there is no conception of an embryo in a womb. Here, there is the union of
the mother and father, and it is the mother’s season, but the gandhabba [sperm] is not present - in this case too
there is no conception of an embryo in a womb. But when there is the union of the mother and father,
and it is the mother’s season, and the gandhabba [sperm] is present, through the union of these three things
the conception of an embryo in a womb takes place.

The mother then carries the embryo in her womb for nine or ten months with much anxiety, as a
heavy burden. Then, at the end of nine or ten months, the mother gives birth with much anxiety, as a
heavy burden. Then, when the child is born, she nourishes it with her own blood; for the mother’s
breast-milk is called blood in the Noble One’s (ariya) training.

MN 38


A first beginning of the craving of existence cannot be conceived, (of which it can be said), 'Before that, there was no craving for existence and it came to be after that.

AN 10.62

riju
30 Jun 12, 11:57
emptiness has been explained as follows:

This is my view...

The above explanations of emptiness are when Guatam buddha was leading monks to arhat stage in first 20 years. He was explaining to them that this body has to be emptied of passion etc. I call this as Hinayana teachings. Even after one walks the Mahayana path these teachings still apply in most of the cases

riju
30 Jun 12, 12:02
although emptiness has been explained as liberation, the creation of life has been explained as occurring as follows:

MY view...

Universal emptiness has the power to create life here and anywhere with or without mating or thro the process of womb or otherwise. Again this above sentence of mine is explaining Mahayana.

riju
30 Jun 12, 12:16
When ever we walk on the path of Mahayana, after arhat stage, we have only inflows and not outflows. Life surrounding us throws on us many emotions (like Element's love and support to Riju), but due to estabilished Emptiness there is no reaction on the part of receiver or if he is not perfect than there are more inflows and less outflows.
The Emptiness requires no space and has a infinite storage. This body (vehicle) due to constant inflows invisibly starts growing. The body's powers start increasing and this is what Bhoddistava is.

Yuan
30 Jun 12, 14:15
Buddhas have not totally succeeded against emptiness but it is claim by Buddhas

Maybe I am dense and slow, but why are we 'against' emptiness? Because emptiness is the source of dukkha?
And what does 'success' against emptiness mean? Another existence outside of the emptiness and the worlds created by it? Or become part of Nirvana? I think you implied that Nirvana is outside emptiness?

riju
30 Jun 12, 16:03
Maybe I am dense and slow, but why are we 'against' emptiness? Because emptiness is the source of dukkha?
And what does 'success' against emptiness mean? Another existence outside of the emptiness and the worlds created by it? Or become part of Nirvana? I think you implied that Nirvana is outside emptiness?

A very good question Yuan,


Buddhas want to build improving (freedom from dukkha) and expanding existence with time.
The basic nature of Emptiness is to demolish existence with time. As I said existence is like waves in a sea.Existence rises and then it goes back to source.
Their purpose is against each other.

Abhaya
30 Jun 12, 17:39
Dear riju,

This fixation on the Lotus Sutra seems to have generated an enormous amount of misunderstandings.


Emptiness is an absolute Truth as per Guatam Buddha in Lotus sutra.

Not in the way you are advocating. The emptiness detailed in the Lotus Sutra is not the Source, Creator, or Ultimate Reality, as you suggest.



Lotus Sutra: Chapter 14

All phenomena
are empty, without being,
without any constant abiding,
without arising or extinction.
This I call the position
the wise person associates himself with.
From upside-down-ness come distinctions,
that phenomena exist, do not exist,
are real, or not real,
are born, are not born.
Place yourself in quiet surroundings,
learn to still your mind,
remain tranquil, and moving,
like Mount Sumeru.
Look upon all phenomena
as having no existence,
like empty space,
as without firmness or hardness,
not born, not emerging,
not moving, and regressing,
constantly abiding in a single form -
this I call the place to draw near to.

http://nichiren.info/buddhism/lotussutra/text/chap14.html


This is what the Lotus Sutra has to say on the matter of how "nothing exists" and its relation to emptiness.


There is only one Buddha , when Guatam Buddha became a Buddha,
all Buddhas of past became one with Him and His total knowledge was sum of knowledge of all buddhas of past.

The Buddha acknowledged that there were Buddhas that came before him. He was the only Buddha of this era. The Buddha of this era did not "absorb" the knowledge of other Buddhas or "merge" with them. Rather than suggest "Nothing Exists", this would seem to go to the opposite extreme by suggesting the existence of an Eternal Buddha who is everywhere at all times.


Buddhas go to Nirvan after completing their work . This Nirvan is a central pool of cosmic energy having Wisdoms which backs the next coming Buddha.

This is incorrect. Buddhas do not "go" to Nirvana, as if it were some place or physical location. Nirvana is not a "central pool of cosmic energy" where Buddhas abide. Nirvana literally means "to blow out" or "to extinguish" (the three fires, for instance). This would suggest to some people that Nirvana is non-existence. To others like yourself, it might suggest eternal existence. The Buddha taught neither.


Vacchagotta Sutta (SN 44.8)

Then Vacchagotta the wanderer went to the Blessed One and, on arrival, exchanged courteous greetings with him. After an exchange of friendly greetings & courtesies, he sat to one side. As he was sitting there, he said to the Blessed One, "Now then, Master Gotama, is the cosmos eternal?"

"That has not been declared by me, Vaccha: 'The cosmos is eternal.'"

"Well then, Master Gotama, is the cosmos not eternal?"

"Vaccha, that too has not been declared by me: 'The cosmos is not eternal.'"

"Then is the cosmos finite?"... "Is the cosmos infinite?"... "Is the body the same as the soul?"... "Is the body one thing, and the soul another?"... "Does the Tathagata exist after death?"... "Does the Tathagata not exist after death?"... "Does the Tathagata both exist and not exist after death?"... "Does the Tathagata neither exist nor not exist after death?"

"Vaccha, that too has not been declared by me: 'The Tathagata neither exists nor does not exist after death."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn44/sn44.008.than.html

To the Buddha, matters of existence or non-existence are irrelevant. Like Dokuon in the original post, the Buddha dismissed his students' obsessions with existence and non-existence.


Emptiness creates life anywhere and everywhere.
But it gives it time after which the life goes back into emptiness.
It is like waves in a sea. The waves rise and then fall back.

No, emptiness does not create life. This seems to be a statement drawn from the Upanishads about Purna, which is sometimes conflated with Sunyata by Advaita Vedantists. See http://www.swamij.com/upanishad-isha-purna.htm . This is not Mahayana Buddhism. Likewise, life does not go back into emptiness. That would be to suggest Sunyata is the Nirguna Brahman of the Upanishads, which it is not. To reify emptiness into some metaphysical absolute is not in accord with either the Lotus Sutra or the historical Buddha's teachings. In Mahayana, emptiness is the teaching that nothing exists in-and-of it self.


The above explanations of emptiness are when Guatam buddha was leading monks to arhat stage in first 20 years. He was explaining to them that this body has to be emptied of passion etc. I call this as Hinayana teachings. Even after one walks the Mahayana path these teachings still apply in most of the cases

Hinayana is an offensive term and should not be used here. It would be better to replace it with Sravakayana, or better yet, not to make the distinction at all, as the Lotus Sutra teaches the Ekayana (One Vehicle), and thereby contradicts itself in blaspheming "Hinayana". If "Nothing Exists", as you say, then why be led astray by dualities? The Lotus Sutra contradicts itself on multiple occasions in this regard.


Universal emptiness has the power to create life here and anywhere with or without mating or thro the process of womb or otherwise. Again this above sentence of mine is explaining Mahayana.

No, this is not the teaching of Mahayana. Your view appears to be the teaching of Advaita Vedanta and Sanatana Dharma.


The Emptiness requires no space and has a infinite storage. This body (vehicle) due to constant inflows invisibly starts growing. The body's powers start increasing and this is what Bhoddistava is.

Again, this reflects a misunderstanding of emptiness as taught by Mahayana.

:hands:

Abhaya

anata
30 Jun 12, 18:30
Originally Posted by riju
Emptiness creates life anywhere and everywhere.
But it gives it time after which the life goes back into emptiness.
It is like waves in a sea. The waves rise and then fall back.
How can something comes out of nothing?

if there really is nothing then it should remain nothing to have the nothing remain nothing, but If something comes out of nothing then that would make that nothing into something which make it not nothing anymore.

One cannot say nothing exist is the ultimate truth when there are something; then to explain this something, he says that it came out of nothing which sounds very confusing with much erroneous views.


My teaching transcends the whole conception of nothing exist and something exist from nothing, being and non-being; it has nothing to do with birth, abiding and destruction; nor with existence and non-existence. I teach that the multitudinousness of objects have no reality in themselves but are only seen of the mind and, therefore, are of the nature of maya and a dream. I teach the non-existence of things because they carry no signs of any inherent self-nature. There are some Brahman scholars who, assuming something out of nothing, assert that there is a substance bound up with causation which abides in time, and that the elements that make up personality and its environment have their genesis and continuation in causation and after thus existing, pass away.


Again, if it is true that something comes out of nothing and there is the rise of the mind-system by reason of the combination of the three effect-producing causes, we could say the same of any non-existing thing: for instance, that a tortoise could grow hair, or sand produce oil. This proposition is of no avail; it ends in affirming nothing.
To make the matter worse, the simple-minded ones, poisoned by this erroneous view, will declare this incorrect way of thinking taught by the ignorant, to be the same as that presented by the Tathagatha.

Objects in themselves are neither in existence nor in non-existence and are quite devoid of the alternative of being and non-being, and should only be thought of as one thinks of the horns of a hare, a horse, or a camel, which never existed.
Originally Posted by riju
A person reaches the stage of Arhat by sitting in awareness and on all thoughts and moods by applying the Wisdom that Nothing exists or everything is impermanent or everything that passes in mind is temporary and will go away. Similarly all outer incidents which he perceives will all pass away . Thus finally he reaches the stage of arhat. This is a stage of No outflows as there is nothing inside and there are also no inflows because of Wisdom of " Nothing Exists"

This will not lead an awakened disciple toward the self-realization of Noble Wisdom.

To practice dhyana, the earnest disciple should retire to a quiet and solitary place, remembering that life-long habits of discriminative thinking cannot be broken off easily nor quickly.

One must remember here are four kinds of concentrative meditation (dhyana):


1) the example of the disciples and masters but who do not understand its purpose and, therefore, it becomes "still-sitting" with vacant minds. This dhyana is practiced, also, by those who, despising the body, see it as a shadow and a skeleton full of suffering and impurity, and yet who cling to the notion of an ego, seek to attain emancipation by the mere cessation of thought.
2) The dhyana devoted to the examination of meaning, is the one practiced by those who, perceiving the untenability of such ideas as self, other and both, which are held by the philosophers, and who have passed beyond the twofold-egolessness, devote dhyana to an examination of the significance of egolessness and the' differentiations of the Bodhisattva stages.
3) The dhyana with Tathata, or "Suchness," or Oneness, or the Divine Name, for its object is practiced by those earnest disciples and masters who, while fully recognizing the twofold egolessness and the imagelessness of Tathata, yet cling to the notion of an ultimate Tathata.
4) The dhyana of the Tathagatas is the dhyana of those who are entering upon the stage of Tathagatahood and who, abiding in the triple bliss which characterizes the self-realization of Noble Wisdom, are devoting themselves for the sake of all beings to the
[B]The first step that will lead an awakened disciple toward the self-realization of Noble Wisdom lies in the recognition that the external world is only a manifestation of the activities of the mind itself, and that the mind grasps it as an external world simply because of its habit of discrimination and false-reasoning. The disciple must get into the habit of looking at things truthfully. He must recognize the fact that the world has no self-nature, that it is un-born, that it is like a passing cloud, like an imaginary wheel made by a revolving firebrand.

Aloka
30 Jun 12, 19:20
Hi anata,

Are all of your 6 quotes in #97 from riju ? Its not very clear - and if they're not, you need to say where they come from and give a URL link to the source, please.


One must remember here are four kinds of concentrative meditation (dhyana):

Your last quote seems to be similar to a passage from "A Buddhist Bible" by Dwight Goddard. Is it from the Lankavatara Sutra ?


http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=kYSOnei4mEcC&pg=PA101&lpg=PA101&dq=the+example+of+the+disciples+and+masters+but+wh o+do+not+understand+its+purpose+and,+therefore,+it +becomes+%22still-sitting%22+with+vacant+minds.+This+dhyana+is+pract iced,+also,+by+those+who,+despising+the+body,+see+ it+as+a+shadow+and+a+skeleton+full+of+suffering+an d+impurity,+and+yet+who+cling+to+the+notion+of+an+ ego,+seek+to+attain+emancipation+by+the+mere+cessa tion+of+thought&source=bl&ots=gc-r1j9nkX&sig=I40Ce4BfIZ-oMyO0olg2zPua-tU&hl=en&sa=X&ei=XkTvT7nRI8Le8APRgLX-DA&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=the%20example%20of%20the%20disciples%20and%20mas ters%20but%20who%20do%20not%20understand%20its%20p urpose%20and%2C%20therefore%2C%20it%20becomes%20%2 2still-sitting%22%20with%20vacant%20minds.%20This%20dhyan a%20is%20practiced%2C%20also%2C%20by%20those%20who %2C%20despising%20the%20body%2C%20see%20it%20as%20 a%20shadow%20and%20a%20skeleton%20full%20of%20suff ering%20and%20impurity%2C%20and%20yet%20who%20clin g%20to%20the%20notion%20of%20an%20ego%2C%20seek%20 to%20attain%20emancipation%20by%20the%20mere%20ces sation%20of%20thought&f=false

Abhaya
30 Jun 12, 20:20
All of the unattributed quotes in anata's post are excerpts from the Lankavatara Sutra translated by D.T. Suzuki, taken from "A Buddhist Bible" by Dwight Goddard.

http://www.sacred-texts.com/bud/bb/bb06.htm

http://lirs.ru/do/lanka_eng/lanka-nondiacritical.htm

anata
30 Jun 12, 22:34
Originally Posted by Abhaya
All of the unattributed quotes in anata's post are excerpts from the Lankavatara Sutra translated by D.T. Suzuki, taken from "A Buddhist Bible" by Dwight Goddard.

Hi, Abhaya, been looking for the URL link for Lankavatara Sutra.
Do you by any chance know the URL link to the surangama sutra?

Aloka
30 Jun 12, 23:03
Do you by any chance know the URL link to the surangama sutra?

Hi anata

Try doing a Google search(or another search engine) there are lots of links to choose from.

Abhaya
30 Jun 12, 23:38
Originally Posted by Abhaya

Hi, Abhaya, been looking for the URL link for Lankavatara Sutra.
Do you by any chance know the URL link to the surangama sutra?

It is not difficult to find.



Surangama Sutra: How to Untie the Six Knots

When Dipamkara Buddha appeared in the world, (under his instruction) I realized the consciousness perfecting supreme Samadhi of the mind which enabled me to perceive that all Tathagata (stores) and samsaric worlds, purity and impurity and existence and non-existence were but appearances caused by my own mind's transformations.

http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/surangama.pdf

Yuan
01 Jul 12, 06:34
Buddhas want to build improving (freedom from dukkha) and expanding existence with time.
The basic nature of Emptiness is to demolish existence with time. As I said existence is like waves in a sea.Existence rises and then it goes back to source.
Their purpose is against each other.

Again, why do Buddhas want to build improving (freedom from dukkha) and expanding existence with time.
Also, in your view, doesn't Existence rises out of Emptiness? So for you to say that the basic nature of Emptiness is to demolish existence with time means that every time Existence goes back to the source and come out, Existence losses something, so eventually, there will only be Emptiness that does not generate Existence.

riju
01 Jul 12, 08:37
some one is blocking me by filling in wrong password more than 5 times . Pl. help so that i can contiue

The Thinker
01 Jul 12, 08:56
it look like you are logged in now riju.

But you can send a technical support message to the Administrator, Example Aloka-D

hope you get this problem fixed :)

The thinker

riju
01 Jul 12, 09:37
Dear riju,

This fixation on the Lotus Sutra seems to have generated an enormous amount of misunderstandings.





Not in the way you are advocating. The emptiness detailed in the Lotus Sutra is not the Source, Creator, or Ultimate Reality, as you suggest.

In this Guatam Buddha advises the Bodhisatva monks the methods they should

adopt to teach the layman.

A layman has first ot empty himself to reach arhatship. And this is the perfect

advice for layman.



This is what the Lotus Sutra has to say on the matter of how "nothing exists" and its relation to emptiness.


But this does not challange the Universal Emptiness that I have explaind as a

summery in the last letter

The Buddha acknowledged that there were Buddhas that came before him. He was the only Buddha of this era. The Buddha of this era did not "absorb" the knowledge of other Buddhas or "merge" with them. Rather than suggest "Nothing Exists", this would seem to go to the opposite extreme by suggesting the existence of an Eternal Buddha who is everywhere at all times.



Does this not confirm that there is only one Buddha of this era. This Lotus sutra

is written by Guatam and he confirms in this sutra that he has sum total

knowledge. If you insist than I have to search with a lot of effort this book and refer

back to you. I advice if you search yourself you will gain a lot.

This is incorrect. Buddhas do not "go" to Nirvana, as if it were some place or physical location. Nirvana is not a "central pool of cosmic energy" where Buddhas abide. Nirvana literally means "to blow out" or "to extinguish" (the three fires, for instance). This would suggest to some people that Nirvana is non-existence. To others like yourself, it might suggest eternal existence. The Buddha taught neither.

Nirvan is a place in this space in this Universe. I do not want to change this

opinion till some one else comes with added information. There is a chapter that

Buddhas who go to Nirvan they rain down on bhoddisattvas, Sons, and buddhist

laymen more than even on Brahma. I can also search out this reference for you.





To the Buddha, matters of existence or non-existence are irrelevant. Like Dokuon in the original post, the Buddha dismissed his students' obsessions with existence and non-existence.


Guatam refuses to take position on cosmos being eternal, it has nothing to do with existance or non-existence.


No, emptiness does not create life. This seems to be a statement drawn from the Upanishads about Purna, which is sometimes conflated with Sunyata by Advaita Vedantists. See http://www.swamij.com/upanishad-isha-purna.htm . This is not Mahayana Buddhism. Likewise, life does not go back into emptiness. That would be to suggest Sunyata is the Nirguna Brahman of the Upanishads, which it is not. To reify emptiness into some metaphysical absolute is not in accord with either the Lotus Sutra or the historical Buddha's teachings. In Mahayana, emptiness is the teaching that nothing exists in-and-of it self.



Hinayana is an offensive term and should not be used here. It would be better to replace it with Sravakayana, or better yet, not to make the distinction at all, as the Lotus Sutra teaches the Ekayana (One Vehicle), and thereby contradicts itself in blaspheming "Hinayana". If "Nothing Exists", as you say, then why be led astray by dualities? The Lotus Sutra contradicts itself on multiple occasions in this regard.



No, this is not the teaching of Mahayana. Your view appears to be the teaching of Advaita Vedanta and Sanatana Dharma.



Again, this reflects a misunderstanding of emptiness as taught by Mahayana.

:hands:

Abhaya

On remaining points I beg to differ

riju
01 Jul 12, 09:41
I am doing mistakes in replying point by point, i have to learn so please give me time.

Aloka
01 Jul 12, 09:49
I am doing mistakes in replying point by point, i have to learn so please give me time.


Hi riju

There is an editing facility on the posting boxes and you can edit/reorganise your own posts within a 12hour limit.

riju
01 Jul 12, 11:37
Abhaya,Yuana

Please refer to chapter 5- The parable of the medicinal herbs;

Here it tells specifically that Buddha rain falls exclusivily on Buddha lands even neglecting Shakars, Brahma, wheel turning kings etc.

Why because Shakaras, Brahmas etc. are not in Buddha lands. Nirvana is where all past buddhas rest. It is core space around which Buddha lands are located.
It is like a mountains of Buddha lands surrounded by Emptiness. The Emptiness lashes against these mountains wearing the mountains out, But incoming Budhas and surrounding bhoddhisattvas and buddha laymen together resist the onslought of Emptiness.

The Buddha rain nourishes the Buddha lands and strengthens it against Emptiness

riju
01 Jul 12, 11:43
Originally Posted by riju
How can something comes out of nothing?


if there really is nothing then it should remain nothing to have the nothing remain nothing, but If something comes out of nothing then that would make that nothing into something which make it not nothing anymore.

One cannot say nothing exist is the ultimate truth when there are something; then to explain this something, he says that it came out of nothing which sounds very confusing with much erroneous views.

There are some Brahman scholars who, assuming something out of nothing, assert that there is a substance bound up with causation which abides in time, and that the elements that make up personality and its environment have their genesis and continuation in causation and after thus existing, pass away.


You have to reread the details on Universal Emptiness. It is not really empty. Confusing may be for you but not for me.

riju
01 Jul 12, 12:02
Annata

This will not lead an awakened disciple toward the self-realization of Noble Wisdom.

To practice dhyana, the earnest disciple should retire to a quiet and solitary place, remembering that life-long habits of discriminative thinking cannot be broken off easily nor quickly.

One must remember here are four kinds of concentrative meditation (dhyana):


I agree with your method of meditation. But if one can understand Absolute Emptiness and meditate than things become simpler. Whatever thoughts come in meditation, one applies this lasting Wisdom of Emptiness of all phenomena and reaches arhat stage

riju
01 Jul 12, 12:06
Anata,

Guatam Buddha transceded this thinking of Nothing.

To understand Absolute Emptiness/ Nothing you have to TRANSCEND and not to do hair spliting

riju
01 Jul 12, 12:14
Again, why do Buddhas want to build improving (freedom from dukkha) and expanding existence with time.
Also, in your view, doesn't Existence rises out of Emptiness? So for you to say that the basic nature of Emptiness is to demolish existence with time means that every time Existence goes back to the source and come out, Existence losses something, so eventually, there will only be Emptiness that does not generate Existence.



I have liked the word Transcend used by Buddha about Nothingness. Because otherwise it creates total confusion in the mind of a layman.

IN ORDER TO UNDERSTAND NOTHINGNESS/EMPTINESS please transcend its meaning by meditation.

The Thinker
01 Jul 12, 12:19
Would it not be better to help layBuddhist to get a better understanding then to confuse them?

The thinker

riju
01 Jul 12, 12:27
Would it not be better to help layBuddhist to get a better understanding then to confuse them?

The thinker


Yes, I thought i am writing on Mahayana forum. What should I do now?

riju
01 Jul 12, 12:35
Would it not be better to help layBuddhist to get a better understanding then to confuse them?

The thinker

When I joined this site, I found the thread "Nothing Exists". I found it interesting and latched on it, and then you know the sequence. Moreover I live in an area where everyone looks down upon a Buddhist. And Buddhist are treated as untouchables. No one knows or talks about Buddhism. I thought I will find company in Buddhist forums. May be I was lonely and rushed into this forum without thinking.

The Thinker
01 Jul 12, 12:43
I would say you are welcome here in BWB and i really hope you will stay here and gain more understanding of Buddhism and to ask things you want to know about. and of course you can also read other texts then the Lotus suttas.

Best wish from
The thinker

Abhaya
02 Jul 12, 04:06
Dear riju,


In this Guatam Buddha advises the Bodhisatva monks the methods they should

adopt to teach the layman.

A layman has first ot empty himself to reach arhatship. And this is the perfect

advice for layman.

Being rid of self-view is essential, as emptiness refers to being empty of self. Emptiness avoids the extremes of self-existence (eternalism) and absolute non-existence (annihilationism). In reference to this, it is said that "nothing exists [inherently]."


But this does not challange the Universal Emptiness that I have explaind as a

summery in the last letter

The Universal Emptiness you have explained is not taught by the Buddha, and does not appear in the Lotus Sutra. It appears that you may be mistaking emptiness for some type of cosmic oneness, which the Buddha never taught, not even in Mahayana. This, unfortunately, is a common misconception.


Does this not confirm that there is only one Buddha of this era. This Lotus sutra

is written by Guatam and he confirms in this sutra that he has sum total

knowledge. If you insist than I have to search with a lot of effort this book and refer

back to you. I advice if you search yourself you will gain a lot.

The Lotus Sutra was not written by the Buddha. None of the suttas/sutras were. It is doubtful the Lotus Sutra was even spoken by the historical Buddha. Furthermore, the topic of this thread is not "The Lotus Sutra", and although I'd like to continue to demonstrate to you that the Lotus Sutra not only contradicts itself but also has little to do with what you're saying, this is not the thread for it. The topic of this thread is "Nothing Exists", specifically in relation to the Zen story quoted in the original post.


Nirvan is a place in this space in this Universe. I do not want to change this

opinion till some one else comes with added information. There is a chapter that

Buddhas who go to Nirvan they rain down on bhoddisattvas, Sons, and buddhist

laymen more than even on Brahma. I can also search out this reference for you.

Nirvana is not a place. It does not physically exist. This doesn't mean that Nirvana doesn't exist at all, just that the view that it is a location where awakened beings go is mistaken.


Guatam refuses to take position on cosmos being eternal, it has nothing to do with existance or non-existence.

If you read the full quote, the Buddha also refuses to take a position on whether the Tathagata exists or does not exist after death. Existence and non-existence are not important to his teachings. This should have been clear from the OP. Do you have anything to say about the story about Dokuon and Yamaoka? If you'd like to discuss the Lotus Sutra exclusively, it might be best to start a new topic.


On remaining points I beg to differ

None of your points are supported by the Buddha's teachings.

:hands:

Abhaya

riju
02 Jul 12, 05:29
Dear riju,



Being rid of self-view is essential, as emptiness refers to being empty of self. Emptiness avoids the extremes of self-existence (eternalism) and absolute non-existence (annihilationism). In reference to this, it is said that "nothing exists [inherently]."



The Universal Emptiness you have explained is not taught by the Buddha, and does not appear in the Lotus Sutra. It appears that you may be mistaking emptiness for some type of cosmic oneness, which the Buddha never taught, not even in Mahayana. This, unfortunately, is a common misconception.


In my last writing on Universal Existance I have clearly give Guatam's view as well as other saints view. Guatam had avoided this topic as this does not help the Existence.

When Guatam buddha was physical alive on earth, writings were not there. His sutras were memorised and written later. If you read the lotus sutra its first page gives the exact location (which is still there in India) and also the persons present at that time were also named.



The Lotus Sutra was not written by the Buddha. None of the suttas/sutras were. It is doubtful the Lotus Sutra was even spoken by the historical Buddha. Furthermore, the topic of this thread is not "The Lotus Sutra", and although I'd like to continue to demonstrate to you that the Lotus Sutra not only contradicts itself but also has little to do with what you're saying, this is not the thread for it. The topic of this thread is "Nothing Exists", specifically in relation to the Zen story quoted in the original post.




Nirvana is not a place. It does not physically exist. This doesn't mean that Nirvana doesn't exist at all, just that the view that it is a location where awakened beings go is mistaken.



Nirvana and Buddha lands are places beyond physical senses.


If you read the full quote, the Buddha also refuses to take a position on whether the Tathagata exists or does not exist after death. Existence and non-existence are not important to his teachings. This should have been clear from the OP. Do you have anything to say about the story about Dokuon and Yamaoka? If you'd like to discuss the Lotus Sutra exclusively, it might be best to start a new topic.




None of your points are supported by the Buddha's teachings.

I have to be blunt here. Lotus sutra is about existence and nothing but the existence. You have not understood it.




:hands:

Abhaya



Abhay I hope you do not mind for contradicting you. Love

Aloka
02 Jul 12, 05:45
The Lotus Sutra was not written by the Buddha. None of the suttas/sutras were. It is doubtful the Lotus Sutra was even spoken by the historical Buddha.

Furthermore, the topic of this thread is not "The Lotus Sutra", and although I'd like to continue to demonstrate to you that the Lotus Sutra not only contradicts itself but also has little to do with what you're saying, this is not the thread for it.

The topic of this thread is "Nothing Exists", specifically in relation to the Zen story quoted in the original post.


Thank you Abhaya - and riju.

I think that at #120 and page 12, its time to close this thread now because it has moved far away from the OP #1 and doesn't seem to be going anywhere constructive.

Thanks to everyone for their contributions.

If anyone wants to start other topics they're very welcome.