What is Mount Meru?

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Grigoris
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by Grigoris »

tatpurusa wrote: Sat Aug 10, 2019 4:06 pm
Grigoris wrote: Sat Aug 10, 2019 1:37 pm
tatpurusa wrote: Sat Aug 10, 2019 12:53 pmWhat is the point you are trying to make?

That the world is exactly like this?
You were the one talking about karmic vision a second ago...
Yes. Meaning that we as humans are not able to percieve Devaloka.
Some can. Regardless, just because we cannot see something does not mean it does not exist.

Anyway, even at the most basic level, different animals see the same world differently, which one sees it properly?
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
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"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
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tatpurusa
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by tatpurusa »

Grigoris wrote: Sat Aug 10, 2019 5:43 pm
tatpurusa wrote: Sat Aug 10, 2019 4:06 pm
Grigoris wrote: Sat Aug 10, 2019 1:37 pm You were the one talking about karmic vision a second ago...
Yes. Meaning that we as humans are not able to percieve Devaloka.
Some can. Regardless, just because we cannot see something does not mean it does not exist.

Anyway, even at the most basic level, different animals see the same world differently, which one sees it properly?
Can you show where I ever stated it does not exist? I just stated normal Humans are not capable of seeing it, because it is in Devaloka.
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by Grigoris »

tatpurusa wrote: Sat Aug 10, 2019 5:45 pmCan you show where I ever stated it does not exist? I just stated normal Humans are not capable of seeing it, because it is in Devaloka.
Sorry. I misunderstood your statement.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde
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Astus
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by Astus »

tatpurusa wrote: Sat Aug 10, 2019 4:27 pm And that is the center of the universe?
According to some, yes. See: Lake Anavatapta.
1 Myriad dharmas are only mind.
Mind is unobtainable.
What is there to seek?

2 If the Buddha-Nature is seen,
there will be no seeing of a nature in any thing.

3 Neither cultivation nor seated meditation —
this is the pure Chan of Tathagata.

4 With sudden enlightenment to Tathagata Chan,
the six paramitas and myriad means
are complete within that essence.


1 Huangbo, T2012Ap381c1 2 Nirvana Sutra, T374p521b3; tr. Yamamoto 3 Mazu, X1321p3b23; tr. J. Jia 4 Yongjia, T2014p395c14; tr. from "The Sword of Wisdom"
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by tatpurusa »

Astus wrote: Sat Aug 10, 2019 7:11 pm
tatpurusa wrote: Sat Aug 10, 2019 4:27 pm And that is the center of the universe?
According to some, yes. See: Lake Anavatapta.
I mean according to you.
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Astus
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by Astus »

tatpurusa wrote: Sat Aug 10, 2019 7:43 pmI mean according to you.
I am a kilometre from the Danube, the second largest river in Europe and has about the same length as the Ganges, however, it comes from the Black Forest and not the Himalayas. The world maps usually have some part of West Africa in the middle, however, since often here "the world" can easily mean simply Europe, it is apparently a debated matter where its midpoint lies, therefore I might as well be biased and say it's either Munich or Tállya.
1 Myriad dharmas are only mind.
Mind is unobtainable.
What is there to seek?

2 If the Buddha-Nature is seen,
there will be no seeing of a nature in any thing.

3 Neither cultivation nor seated meditation —
this is the pure Chan of Tathagata.

4 With sudden enlightenment to Tathagata Chan,
the six paramitas and myriad means
are complete within that essence.


1 Huangbo, T2012Ap381c1 2 Nirvana Sutra, T374p521b3; tr. Yamamoto 3 Mazu, X1321p3b23; tr. J. Jia 4 Yongjia, T2014p395c14; tr. from "The Sword of Wisdom"
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by tatpurusa »

Astus wrote: Sat Aug 10, 2019 9:55 pm
tatpurusa wrote: Sat Aug 10, 2019 7:43 pmI mean according to you.
I am a kilometre from the Danube, the second largest river in Europe and has about the same length as the Ganges, however, it comes from the Black Forest and not the Himalayas. The world maps usually have some part of West Africa in the middle, however, since often here "the world" can easily mean simply Europe, it is apparently a debated matter where its midpoint lies, therefore I might as well be biased and say it's either Munich or Tállya.
No, I mean the centre of the universe, with all realms, not just of the Earth. This is what it is supposed to be.
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by Astus »

tatpurusa wrote: Sat Aug 10, 2019 11:15 pmNo, I mean the centre of the universe, with all realms, not just of the Earth. This is what it is supposed to be.
The Buddhist universe in the sense of lokadhatu? Because then it is taught to be the Sumeru. But if you mean how it should be in light of the current view of the world, then there is no centre.
1 Myriad dharmas are only mind.
Mind is unobtainable.
What is there to seek?

2 If the Buddha-Nature is seen,
there will be no seeing of a nature in any thing.

3 Neither cultivation nor seated meditation —
this is the pure Chan of Tathagata.

4 With sudden enlightenment to Tathagata Chan,
the six paramitas and myriad means
are complete within that essence.


1 Huangbo, T2012Ap381c1 2 Nirvana Sutra, T374p521b3; tr. Yamamoto 3 Mazu, X1321p3b23; tr. J. Jia 4 Yongjia, T2014p395c14; tr. from "The Sword of Wisdom"
joy&peace
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by joy&peace »

tatpurusa wrote: Sat Aug 10, 2019 2:10 am Hi joy&peace

Sorry for not responding to this specific question, I thought my opinion was understandable from other posts I wrote.
This is a vast subject and I am not sure if I will be able to really explain it in a short post, but I will try anyway.

Sumeru is at the heart of Indian mythology and cosmology included in all Indian religions (with different stories though)
As I mentioned in other posts further above in this thread, I consider myths allegorical language. They refer to the truth,
but use symbols and metaphors as a device in order to point to experiences otherwise difficult or impossible to communicate,
because they are not graspable through objectification by concepts.

Another fundamental and unignorable Indian system of thought that became in a way or other integrated with all Indian religions (at least in its terminology even Buddhism) and philosophies is Sāṃkhya (and its practical side, yoga). I do not mean classical Sāṃkhya, but its original, much older form that in my opinion predates the arrival of Indoeuropean/Indoarian tribes to India.
Sāṃkhya and Yoga are the basic worldview, the bedrock of all philosophical, spiritual and religious systems of Indian origin.
It is a description and analysis of the manifestation of the world out of the unmanifested state (avyakta prakṛti) to the now percievable world
both in its universal (outer) and individual (inner) forms. It describes the unfolding of Avyaktam (unmanifest) into Vyaktam (manifest), its components and the process of "backfolding" (returning to its unmanifest state of balance) through the practice of yoga.

The myth of Sumeru and Sāṃkhya are very much connected IMO. Sumeru is the allegorical representation of the base of both these universal and individual worlds and there are stories connected to Sumeru (like the Hindu story of churning of the Milk Ocean) describing the "unfolding" process in an allegorical way.

On the universal level, Sumeru represents the center or axis of the world: its "bearer" (dharma).
In the myth of Churning of the Milk Ocean a spur of Sumeru (called Mandara) is used to churn the ocean that lead to the emergence of the world.
The Milk Ocean is a symbol of Avyakta Prakṛti and Mount Mandara is the symbol of Puruṣa (primordial conciousness).
According to Sāṃkhya the presence of Puruṣa (though in no way connected to Prakṛti) causes the unmanifest (balanced) state of Avyakta Prakṛti to lose its inner balance and manifest its elements and later all appearances of the empirical world. This losing of balance is symbolised through the process of churning.

So Sumeru is a symbol for the primordial conciousness Puruṣa (both in the dimension of universal and individual). In the universal dimension it is the symbol of Mahat (universal conciousness).
In the individual dimension it is the symbol of center of the human being: in the physical body it is the spine (the spine is called Merudanda in sanskrit).
On deeper levels it is the symbol of individual Puruṣa (individual primordial consciousness). In a Buddhist context this would be nature of mind or Buddha nature.

Buddha had a profound knowledge of Sāṃkhya and had practiced Yoga before awakening. He used Sāṃkhya terminology and the myths connected to it in order to communicate with members of a society profoundly influenced by these.

Regarding your other question about siddhis - my short answer is: yes, I consider them real.
I thought you did, same is true for me as well.
Om Gate Gate Paragate Parasamgate bodhi svaha
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

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Nicholas Weeks wrote: Thu Aug 08, 2019 2:06 pm
Simon E. wrote: Thu Aug 08, 2019 1:21 pm For example we find in one of the Suttas the Buddha saying that earthquakes are caused by breaches in the great ocean that circles the earth above the atmosphere.
Or one can see a metaphor being used to suggest an extra-sensory realm which only the siddhis of high bodhisattvas or buddhas are aware of. Even your Lord Scientism is recognizing an electro-magnetic influence regarding earthquakes.
Very suggestive article, which added to the recent discoveries about Interplanetary magnetic shocks opens up vast areas for contemplation.
The bottom line is that all earthquakes and volcanic eruptions-big or small- are triggered by an external pressure induced on Earth’s magnetic field. Strong Coronal Mass Ejection Flare directed at Earth can exert pressure, that deform and shrink the Magnetosphere by as much as 4 Earth Radius (4Re). But, the pressure would affect or impact the layers of Earth below its surface in different ways. It depends on the tectonic of each region. In some regions the tension would cause energy to be released in a form of earthquake, while in others it would be in a form of volcanic eruption.
https://watchers.news/2015/06/09/cosmic ... eruptions/
May all seek, find & follow the Path of Buddhas.
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by joy&peace »

Sādhaka wrote: Thu Aug 08, 2019 4:41 pm
Let’s say that the Gyalwa Dalai Lama might still actually ‘believe’ In Buddhist cosmology. Do you think he would actually admit it publicly? He would be laughed off the world stage because so many people are conditioned by the official scientism-istic narrative. Even though the Dalai Lama is not looking for “converts” in an evangelistic sense, it would still hurt Tibet’s cause.

The Dalai Lama does seem pretty convinced that Buddhist cosmology is not ‘true’; but who knows....

Does anyone know what the Dalai Lama May have said about evolution as presented by mainstream-science?
Yes. He is a proponent of evolution. The Dalai Lama has so many people who have so much faith in him, and I think he would not jeopardize that. There is much untruth, in the world and complexity, there is no need for it really -- one can be simple, and especially in the lime light (light of fame), the benefits are clear.

He has a responsibility to be honest and clear, and I believe he does not ever bend the truth.

But he doesn't leave Buddhism or anything. He says there is much which science can't prove or disprove. Which is as it should be.

In cosmology, there are two realms above ours; the realm of form, and above that, the formless realm.

Rupa and arupa dhatu. (Rupa, form, and arupa, formless.). But the higher realms are not usually perceptible to lower ones.

Peace and love,
J
Om Gate Gate Paragate Parasamgate bodhi svaha
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by Aemilius »

Sādhaka wrote: Wed Aug 07, 2019 5:54 pm The oldest Mercator maps showed a ‘Mount Meru’ (labeled as the “Rupes Nigra” there) at the North Pole surrounded by Four Continents. We still use the Mercator map today, of course minus the Rupes Nigra and Four Continents. Around the mid-1600’s the Rupes Nigra and Four Continents gradually started to disappear from newer editions of the Mercator map until they were completely gone.

Interestingly Gerardus Mercator was a friend of queen Elizabeth I’s court occultist-magician John Dee.



Image
Image



Some flat-Earthers like to run with this model, but if you look at an entire old Mercator map (meaning not just the bird’s-eye view of the North Pole), it looks like even the oldest Mercator maps were actually sphere-Earth maps.

Anyhow, the question is, how to reconcile this with Buddhist Cosmology? The resemblance of Mt. Meru with the Four Continents and the Rupes Nigra with Four Continents is too uncanny to ignore; however what then is Jambudvipa? Would Jambuvidpa be only the ‘southern’ small-ish island-continent by the North Pole? Or is Jambudvipa the entire known-world? Or perhaps the entire known-world is a extension of the small-ish Jambudvipa island-continent near the North Pole/Rupes Nigra?



Image
Image



Also, what about all the old tales of European and perhaps other explorers visiting these North-Pole lands? There are separate accounts, some separated by centuries, with no apparent common vested interest; therefore I don’t think we can simply write these stories off as mere folklore. Of course all this raises more questions than it provides answers.

Perhaps every cosmology is in a sense ‘arbitrary’.... I need to read Jamgon Kongtrul’s writing on Dzogchen Cosmology.
In Abhidharmakosha-bhashyam, part two, page 455, Vasubandhu writes that Jambudvipa has three sides, each 2000 yojanas in length, and the fourth side, or its tip, is three and a half yojanas. The tip of Jambudvipa is traditionally depicted to be facing Mt Sumeru. Obviously in Vasubandhu's mind this tip is the southern end of India, which is facing the South pole or Antarctica, which must then be the Mt Sumeru. In Vasubandhu's view then the Jambudvipa is India plus the Asian and European continents. 2000 yojanas equals 24 000 km, if we take a yojana to be 12 km. A triangle with three sides of 24 000 km each is more than enough to cover the land area that lies beyond the Himalayas, i.e. the land area of Asia and Europe.
svaha
"All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.
They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
Sarvē mānavāḥ svatantrāḥ samutpannāḥ vartantē api ca, gauravadr̥śā adhikāradr̥śā ca samānāḥ ēva vartantē. Ētē sarvē cētanā-tarka-śaktibhyāṁ susampannāḥ santi. Api ca, sarvē’pi bandhutva-bhāvanayā parasparaṁ vyavaharantu."
Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 1. (in english and sanskrit)
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by Simon E. »

And the winner of this months Prapanca Gold Cup goes to...

The judges were particular impressed by the name dropping of Elizabeth Ist’s occultist.
“You don’t know it. You just know about it. That is not the same thing.”

Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche to me.
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by Schrödinger’s Yidam »

I need to read Jamgon Kongtrul’s writing on Dzogchen Cosmology.
See”Myriad Worlds”, book 1 of his Treasury of Knowledge. Last chapter.

Basically everything comes from “the basis”.
1.The problem isn’t ‘ignorance’. The problem is the mind you have right now. (H.H. Karmapa XVII @NYC 2/4/18)
2. I support Mingyur R and HHDL in their positions against lama abuse.
3. Student: Lama, I thought I might die but then I realized that the 3 Jewels would protect me.
Lama: Even If you had died the 3 Jewels would still have protected you. (DW post by Fortyeightvows)
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by PeterC »

Simon E. wrote: Fri Aug 30, 2019 6:13 pm And the winner of this months Prapanca Gold Cup goes to...

The judges were particular impressed by the name dropping of Elizabeth Ist’s occultist.
Meanwhile:
https://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/imagegallery/index.html
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by Sādhaka »

That’s^ an artistic rendering based on ‘data’; not an actual photo.

Although maybe the images that I posted in this thread are too? 🧐
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by Sādhaka »

Not to create an “either/or” predicament.

Perhaps merely an feeble attempt on my part to resolve an seeming-“either/or”-predicament.


smcj wrote: Fri Aug 30, 2019 6:35 pm
I need to read Jamgon Kongtrul’s writing on Dzogchen Cosmology.
See”Myriad Worlds”, book 1 of his Treasury of Knowledge. Last chapter.

Right. Thank you. I knew it was in there; just not what chapter.

I’ve read in another post here that ‘ultimately’ Dzogchen cosmology is a non-cosmology, so to speak (not nihilism though); yet conventionally refers to Abhidharma cosmology.
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by PeterC »

Sādhaka wrote: Sat Aug 31, 2019 3:02 am That’s^ an artistic rendering based on ‘data’; not an actual photo.

Although maybe the images that I posted in this thread are too? 🧐
It's based on a picture taken by a device, manipulated for clarity, much as you would adjust the contrast and color on a digital photo or stitch multiple photos together.

The images you posted were not based on any actual physical observation of any kind.

I collect antique maps. I have a wonderful map of North Asia put together in France from verbal accounts collected from Jesuit missionaries. It has lots of things in the wrong places, but if I was traveling overland to Siberia in the 18th century, I would probably take it with me, as it was the most complete picture available at the time. No map is completely accurate.

One needs a visualization of the universe for the purposes of, say, doing mandala offerings, and I personally find the traditional one with Mount Meru and the four continents easy to do and convenient in that it fits the text. But I know very well its a representation based on imperfect premodern speculation, and it is objectively wrong in many ways: but that doesn't mean I should not use it. I find it the most effective model to use for the purpose of doing mandala offerings. If I was trying to show people where modern countries are relative to each other, I would use the Mercator projection, since most people recognize it. However if I was trying to show people how to fly somewhere I wouldn't use that map, since it distorts distances and areas in favor of preserving latitude and longitude - I might use a globe instead.

What I wouldn't do, however, is try to use the Mount Meru model for anything other than visualizations for offerings: there are better maps for pretty much every conceivable purpose. Doing that would be a bit like a doctor using leeches on a patient with a fever, or perhaps a chemist trying use phlogiston to generate heat or a searching for the alchemists' stone. There are better models available.
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by Simon E. »

The fact that the cosmology of the ancients bore little resemblance to conventional reality was no impediment to their practising Dharma. In the same way, the more accurate mapping and measuring of conventional reality does not in itself diminish the Dukkha experienced by moderns.

These things are not of the same order of reality.
“You don’t know it. You just know about it. That is not the same thing.”

Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche to me.
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Re: What is Mount Meru?

Post by Aemilius »

Indian sadhu explaining how the early maps came into existence

svaha
"All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.
They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
Sarvē mānavāḥ svatantrāḥ samutpannāḥ vartantē api ca, gauravadr̥śā adhikāradr̥śā ca samānāḥ ēva vartantē. Ētē sarvē cētanā-tarka-śaktibhyāṁ susampannāḥ santi. Api ca, sarvē’pi bandhutva-bhāvanayā parasparaṁ vyavaharantu."
Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 1. (in english and sanskrit)
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