Anonymous X wrote:Realization is a mental process? Perhaps you can explain this to us.
It is a mental process, as it is about confirming in personal experience the truth of the Dharma. To stay with Nagarjuna:
"Through the elimination of karma and affliction there is nirvana.
Karma and affliction come from conceptual thought.
These come from mental fabrication.
Fabrication ceases through emptiness."
(MMK 18.5, in Ocean of Reasoning, p 377)
If this were a mental process, then many of the posters here would have realization as many have understood the Madhyamaka emptiness. But, this is clearly not the case as most of the understanding is an intellectual one and is not on the intrinsic level of being. To quote Padmasambhava, “Now, when you are introduced to your own intrinsic awareness, the method for entering into it involves three considerations :
Thoughts in the past are clear and empty and leave no traces behind.
Thoughts in the future are fresh and unconditioned by anything.
And in the present moment, when (your mind) remains in its own condition without constructing anything
Awareness at that moment in itself is quite ordinary.
And when you look into yourself in this way nakedly (without any discursive thoughts)
Since there is only this pure observing, there will be found a lucid clarity without anyone being there who is the observer;
Only a naked manifest awareness is present.
(This awareness) is empty and immaculately pure, not being created by anything whatsoever. It is authentic and unadulterated, without any duality of clarity and emptiness.
It is not permanent and yet it is not created by anything.
However, it is not a mere nothingness or something annihilated because it is lucid and present.
It does not exist as a single entity because it is present and clear in terms of being many.
(On the other hand) it is not created as a multiplicity of things because it is inseparable and of a single flavor.
This inherent self-awareness does not derive from anything outside itself.”
Even the 6th Patriarch in his Platform Sutra spoke of "no-mind
Zongmi often mentions "no-mindfulness
Madhyamaka is seen as a stepping stone in the so called step by step schools because it is not a direct pointing to the original nature or Tathagatagarbha. I'm not trying to diminish its importance, though. This is why I don't accept that realization is a mental process. It may 'seem' like it, but this is not realization. Of course, your definition may be different, but I see it as another concept you believe in.