Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

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cj39
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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by cj39 » Fri May 20, 2016 5:02 pm

Short answer, craving.

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dzogchungpa
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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by dzogchungpa » Fri May 20, 2016 5:05 pm

Malcolm wrote:
dzogchungpa wrote:Apparently Jiyu-Kennett did in fact teach that something like the splitting you describe was possible. Anyway, I have never seen an explanation of this issue that made any sense to me.
Many people teach strange things not in keeping with Buddhadharma, so what?
I am not citing her as an authority, I am just pointing it out to Iconodule since he brought it up and I thought he would be interested to know that.
There is not only nothingness because there is always, and always can manifest. - Thinley Norbu Rinpoche

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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by Malcolm » Fri May 20, 2016 5:09 pm

dzogchungpa wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
dzogchungpa wrote:Apparently Jiyu-Kennett did in fact teach that something like the splitting you describe was possible. Anyway, I have never seen an explanation of this issue that made any sense to me.
Many people teach strange things not in keeping with Buddhadharma, so what?
I am not citing her as an authority, I am just pointing it out to Iconodule since he brought it up and I thought he would be interested to know that.

Vasubandhu shows that mind streams are independent — that is a more reliable thing to mention. You will doubtless be invoking Jax next. :|

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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by Iconodule » Fri May 20, 2016 5:37 pm

Malcolm wrote:
dzogchungpa wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
Many people teach strange things not in keeping with Buddhadharma, so what?
I am not citing her as an authority, I am just pointing it out to Iconodule since he brought it up and I thought he would be interested to know that.

Vasubandhu shows that mind streams are independent
What's his reasoning?
Enter eagerly into the treasure house that lies within you, and so you will see the treasure house of heaven. For the two are the same, and there is but on single entry to them both. The ladder that leads to the Kingdom is hidden within you, and is found in your soul. Dive into yourself, and in your soul you will discover the rungs by which you are to ascend. - Saint Isaac of Syria

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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by Malcolm » Fri May 20, 2016 5:53 pm

Iconodule wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
dzogchungpa wrote: I am not citing her as an authority, I am just pointing it out to Iconodule since he brought it up and I thought he would be interested to know that.

Vasubandhu shows that mind streams are independent
What's his reasoning?
You can follow up by looking at any discussions of his twenty verses.

In order for a consciousness to split in the manner you suggest, from a Buddhist perspective this is impossible, since it leaves the undesirable consequence that one would then have to explain how karmavipaka (result of karma) from one karma would ripen on two distinct and separate conscious entities and so on.

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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by Grigoris » Fri May 20, 2016 6:06 pm

But high level Bodhisattvas can manifest as more than one seemingly independent being/phenomenon at any point in time while maintaining their own (original) independent existence.

Another example would be the Khyentse tulku:

Beru Khyentse
Dzamyang Khyentse
Dilgo Khyentse
Etc...

That are all tulku of a single being: Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo.
"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

Iconodule
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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by Iconodule » Fri May 20, 2016 6:10 pm

I'm not sure if I'm just not following the arguments being made here, or if my question is not really being addressed. In any case I don't feel it has. That may just be my problem. In any case, it's strange to me that a system which teaches impermanence, non-self, dependent origination, emptiness, the unreality of subject-object distinctions, etc. can still maintain that individual streams of consciousness are permanently independent, being capable of neither splitting nor merging.
Enter eagerly into the treasure house that lies within you, and so you will see the treasure house of heaven. For the two are the same, and there is but on single entry to them both. The ladder that leads to the Kingdom is hidden within you, and is found in your soul. Dive into yourself, and in your soul you will discover the rungs by which you are to ascend. - Saint Isaac of Syria

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gad rgyangs
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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by gad rgyangs » Fri May 20, 2016 6:15 pm

Iconodule wrote:I'm not sure if I'm just not following the arguments being made here, or if my question is not really being addressed. In any case I don't feel it has. That may just be my problem. In any case, it's strange to me that a system which teaches impermanence, non-self, dependent origination, emptiness, the unreality of subject-object distinctions, etc. can still maintain that individual streams of consciousness are permanently independent, being capable of neither splitting nor merging.
dont confuse dogmatist fundamentalists with questions arising from critical thinking. it will only make them angry.
Thoroughly tame your own mind.
This is (possibly) the teaching of Buddha.

"I must finally conclude that this proposition, I am, I exist, is necessarily true whenever it is put forward by me or conceived in my mind."
- Descartes, 2nd Meditation 25

Iconodule
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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by Iconodule » Fri May 20, 2016 6:18 pm

Ouch! I don't think that's fair. I think they have tried to engage my questions honestly.
Enter eagerly into the treasure house that lies within you, and so you will see the treasure house of heaven. For the two are the same, and there is but on single entry to them both. The ladder that leads to the Kingdom is hidden within you, and is found in your soul. Dive into yourself, and in your soul you will discover the rungs by which you are to ascend. - Saint Isaac of Syria

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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by Malcolm » Fri May 20, 2016 6:27 pm

Sherab Dorje wrote:But high level Bodhisattvas can manifest as more than one seemingly independent being/phenomenon at any point in time while maintaining their own (original) independent existence.
Even low level first stage bodhisattva can have 100 emanations, or so it is said.

But an emanation is not a "split" consciousness, the subject of discussion here. Iconnodule was specifically talking about being splitting into different forms for the six lokas.

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dzogchungpa
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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by dzogchungpa » Fri May 20, 2016 6:31 pm

Malcolm wrote:You will doubtless be invoking Jax next. :|
Now, now, Malcolm, no need to play the Jax card. :smile:
There is not only nothingness because there is always, and always can manifest. - Thinley Norbu Rinpoche

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Grigoris
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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by Grigoris » Fri May 20, 2016 6:33 pm

Malcolm wrote:Even low level first stage bodhisattva can have 100 emanations, or so it is said.

But an emanation is not a "split" consciousness, the subject of discussion here.
Okay, I can understand that emanations of Bodhisattvas may be like puppets of the original consciousness, but what about the tulku issue I raised? Here we quite clearly have an example of a single consciousness manifesting as several samsaric form and mind combinations.
"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

Malcolm
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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by Malcolm » Fri May 20, 2016 6:34 pm

Iconodule wrote:I'm not sure if I'm just not following the arguments being made here, or if my question is not really being addressed. In any case I don't feel it has. That may just be my problem. In any case, it's strange to me that a system which teaches impermanence, non-self, dependent origination, emptiness, the unreality of subject-object distinctions, etc. can still maintain that individual streams of consciousness are permanently independent, being capable of neither splitting nor merging.
An effect is supported on its causes and conditions. In order for a mind stream to "split" it would have to, in effect, calve itself, produce two instances of itself simultaneously.

Likewise, for merging, one consciousness would have to give up it own causes and conditions, and adopt those of another.

The point is that in the end, the Buddha said that we are owners and heirs of our own karma. If a mind stream split, then this would not be the case, the second person of the split mind stream would be an heir of karma they never produced themselves, etc.

Also, if you theorize a split in a mindstream, you are proposing a beginning to a sentient being, something which is impossible given dependent origination and its consequences.

Malcolm
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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by Malcolm » Fri May 20, 2016 6:35 pm

Sherab Dorje wrote:
Malcolm wrote:Even low level first stage bodhisattva can have 100 emanations, or so it is said.

But an emanation is not a "split" consciousness, the subject of discussion here.
Okay, I can understand that emanations of Bodhisattvas may be like puppets of the original consciousness, but what about the tulku issue I raised? Here we quite clearly have an example of a single consciousness manifesting as several samsaric form and mind combinations.
Do you believe all those people are emanations of Khyentse Wangpo? I don't.

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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by Malcolm » Fri May 20, 2016 6:45 pm

gad rgyangs wrote:
Iconodule wrote:I'm not sure if I'm just not following the arguments being made here, or if my question is not really being addressed. In any case I don't feel it has. That may just be my problem. In any case, it's strange to me that a system which teaches impermanence, non-self, dependent origination, emptiness, the unreality of subject-object distinctions, etc. can still maintain that individual streams of consciousness are permanently independent, being capable of neither splitting nor merging.
dont confuse dogmatist fundamentalists with questions arising from critical thinking. it will only make them angry.
There is critical thinking and fruitless intellectual proliferation. Sometimes it is hard to discern one from the other.

In this case, I suspect our friends question, reasonable though it is, arises from a lack of familiarity with the basic assumption of Buddhadharma. Karma is personal and only can worked out and experienced personally. The reason this happens is because mind streams are intrinsically separate and unique and have no ultimate origin.

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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Fri May 20, 2016 6:51 pm

Is there ultimately any unity or multiplicity in the first place? I understood these to be relative.
His welcoming
& rebelling are scattered,
gone to their end,
do not exist.
Knowing the dustless, sorrowless state,
he discerns rightly,
has gone, beyond becoming,
to the Further Shore.

-Lokavipatti Sutta

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dzogchungpa
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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by dzogchungpa » Fri May 20, 2016 6:52 pm

Malcolm wrote:The point is that in the end, the Buddha said that we are owners and heirs of our own karma.
IMO, the point is: What do you mean 'we', Buddha man?
There is not only nothingness because there is always, and always can manifest. - Thinley Norbu Rinpoche

Malcolm
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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by Malcolm » Fri May 20, 2016 6:54 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:Is there ultimately any unity or multiplicity in the first place? I understood these to be relative.
The question raised here was in reference to karma, the six realms, and bifurcated consciousnesses. This is all relative.

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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by Malcolm » Fri May 20, 2016 6:58 pm

dzogchungpa wrote:
Malcolm wrote:The point is that in the end, the Buddha said that we are owners and heirs of our own karma.
IMO, the point is: What do you mean 'we', Buddha man?
We as individuals.
  • "Student, beings are owners of kammas, heirs of kammas, they have kammas as their progenitor, kammas as their kin, kammas as their homing-place. It is kammas that differentiate beings according to inferiority and superiority."

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Re: Single Stream of Consciousness and Rebirth

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Fri May 20, 2016 7:02 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:Is there ultimately any unity or multiplicity in the first place? I understood these to be relative.
The question raised here was in reference to karma, the six realms, and bifurcated consciousnesses. This is all relative.

I remember once I asked how this works with creation/destruction of universes, because it seems that for that to be so, beings would in fact have to be created and destroyed, or "split" for some single root.. especially given something like Dzogchen cosmogony. IIRC the answer was that only certain realms are destroyed at the end of universes, so that the mindstreams "end up" somewhere else. This seems to imply a static number of mindstreams (contradictory to what is always said), but maybe that is reading too much into it.

I have to admit I am still boggled on how this is not eternalism of a sort.
Last edited by Johnny Dangerous on Fri May 20, 2016 7:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
His welcoming
& rebelling are scattered,
gone to their end,
do not exist.
Knowing the dustless, sorrowless state,
he discerns rightly,
has gone, beyond becoming,
to the Further Shore.

-Lokavipatti Sutta

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