Ultimate Truth

General forum on the teachings of all schools of Mahayana and Vajrayana Buddhism. Topics specific to one school are best posted in the appropriate sub-forum.
Malcolm
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by Malcolm » Sun Nov 06, 2016 11:09 pm

Tsongkhapafan wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
conebeckham wrote:

Our aggregates are in reality the male and female Buddhas.
Oh, you mean they look like this?

vairocanayabyum.jpg

Come on cone, this is merely a symbol used in order to make sure that we do not reify the yidam as a self. But our aggregates, etc., do not have faces and arms, nor do they wear medieval Indian costumes. At least mine don't. YMMV.
So you deny that Buddhas appear as Enjoyment Bodies or Supreme Emanations Bodies in these aspects to disciples? How else are they to communicate with them? Disciples cannot communicate with the Dharmakaya.

Practitioners of the past have seen Manjushri and so forth in the forms that are represented in drawings and paintings and received teachings directly from them. I don't understand your problem with this unless you disbelieve these stories.
My friend, Buddhas do not possess these forms. More to the point, your aggregates, etc, do not have faces, arms, and ornaments. They not look like this:

Image

Nor this:

Image

Nor this:

Image

Nor this:

Image

Buddhas possess none of these forms.

M

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Tsongkhapafan
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by Tsongkhapafan » Sun Nov 06, 2016 11:10 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Great justification for continuing in a state of ignorance about the real meaning of Secret Mantra Vajrayāna.
On the contrary, didn't Buddha say that we shouldn't accept statements that don't agree with our logic and reason? He also said we should only accept the teachings if we investigate them and we find that they accord with our own experience.

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Tsongkhapafan
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by Tsongkhapafan » Sun Nov 06, 2016 11:12 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Tsongkhapafan wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
Oh, you mean they look like this?

vairocanayabyum.jpg

Come on cone, this is merely a symbol used in order to make sure that we do not reify the yidam as a self. But our aggregates, etc., do not have faces and arms, nor do they wear medieval Indian costumes. At least mine don't. YMMV.
So you deny that Buddhas appear as Enjoyment Bodies or Supreme Emanations Bodies in these aspects to disciples? How else are they to communicate with them? Disciples cannot communicate with the Dharmakaya.

Practitioners of the past have seen Manjushri and so forth in the forms that are represented in drawings and paintings and received teachings directly from them. I don't understand your problem with this unless you disbelieve these stories.
My friend, Buddhas do not possess these forms. More to the point, your aggregates, etc, do not have faces, arms, and ornaments. They not look like this:

Image

Nor this:

Image

Nor this:

Image

Nor this:

Image

Buddhas possess none of these forms.

M
And your reasons for stating this are?

You obviously deny the existence of the Illusory Body of Highest Yoga Tantra which possesses limbs and appears in the aspect of the Deity. Looks like Father Tantra is a waste of time then according to you!

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conebeckham
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by conebeckham » Sun Nov 06, 2016 11:26 pm

Malcolm wrote:
conebeckham wrote:
Tsongkhapafan wrote:
Erm, ignorance is impurity, thus our aggregates are not pure. Of course the purity or impurity of reality doesn't change.


Our aggregates are in reality the male and female Buddhas.
Oh, you mean they look like this?

vairocanayabyum.jpg

Come on cone, this is merely a symbol used in order to make sure that we do not reify the yidam as a self. But our aggregates, etc., do not have faces and arms, nor do they wear medieval Indian costumes. At least mine don't. YMMV.
I agree, they are symbols. You know, Malcolm, the real Demchok is not a blue male figure with bone ornaments. But you would agree, wouldn't you, there is a true demchok, and it is us.......apart from any symbolic representation.
དམ་པའི་དོན་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ཆེ་བ་དང་།
རྟོག་གེའི་ཡུལ་མིན་བླ་མའི་བྱིན་རླབས་དང་།
སྐལ་ལྡན་ལས་འཕྲོ་ཅན་གྱིས་རྟོགས་པ་སྟེ།
དེ་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ལ་ནི་ལོ་རྟོག་སེལ།།


"Absolute Truth is not an object of analytical discourse or great discriminating wisdom,
It is realized through the blessing grace of the Guru and fortunate Karmic potential.
Like this, mistaken ideas of discriminating wisdom are clarified."
- (Kyabje Bokar Rinpoche, from his summary of "The Ocean of Definitive Meaning")

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conebeckham
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by conebeckham » Sun Nov 06, 2016 11:33 pm

Tsongkhapafan wrote:
conebeckham wrote:
Tsongkhapafan wrote:
Erm, ignorance is impurity, thus our aggregates are not pure. Of course the purity or impurity of reality doesn't change.


Our aggregates are in reality the male and female Buddhas. We are like a jar of dirty water--the nature of the water is always pure, but ignorance and the other two poisons at like shaking the jar. Practice is like resting the jar, allowing the dirt to settle, and perhaps even eventually filtering out the dirt. There's nothing new to add, nothing to create.
You can't say that something is pure if it's filled with impurity!
I can, if it's mixed with incidental impurities. Water can be dirty, but it is still water. It's nature is pure water, and always will be.
Buddhas are beyond impurity so if something, like the mind, is contaminated by ignorance you cannot claim it is an enlightened mind. You can say it has the potential to be pure. Our aggregates cannot be the male and female Buddhas because that would imply that it's possible for enlightened beings to become impure and enlightenment is irreversible purity.

Ignorance and karma function to produce contaminated aggregates and enlightenment develops from spiritual practice, it is not there from the beginning. To claim otherwise is to deny the necessity for a spiritual path. It's also clearly incorrect to claim we are Buddhas from the beginning. That's like saying that by having a cotton seed we have cotton. A cotton seed cannot function as cotton and similarly Buddhanature doesn't function as Buddhahood until it is free of obstructions.
It is precisely because of the function or existence of Buddhanature that we have a path. I want to make it clear, though....I am speaking from a certain perspective when I say the aggregates are the wisdom buddhas, etc.....but they are not "created" by practice. Neither can we be dishonest and say we are without defilements. But those defilements are incidental, and not permanent state. Buddhahood is the removal of stains and the blossoming of Buddha nature into Buddhahood--but it is not created.
On a side note, I'm not interested in people's academic qualifications - there are many scholars who have an incorrect understanding of Dharma just as there are many Yogis who have not studied extensively but who have pure experiences of Sutra and Tantra because of their faith and pure view. I'm interested in the meanings that people convey. If they convey meanings that do not agree with my own understanding and experience of Dharma, I will question that. If they cannot provide logical support for their position, again I will challenge that. Anyone can quote scripture just as a parrot can repeat human speech, what is important is the meaning of the scripture, not just the words. Also, actions speak louder than words. It doesn't give me much faith when someone who appears to have extensive learning denigrates others when they simply disagree with their views.
I don't think we should denigrate others, and that does sadden me. But I also don't think we should make the sorts of absurd assertions you made, "hey-maybe you should study some tantra!" when it's obvious to all that we've all studied some tantra. Your tactic was a denigration, it was just a bit more passive-aggressive. Malcolm is more direct, and also, perhaps, a better manager of his time than I.
དམ་པའི་དོན་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ཆེ་བ་དང་།
རྟོག་གེའི་ཡུལ་མིན་བླ་མའི་བྱིན་རླབས་དང་།
སྐལ་ལྡན་ལས་འཕྲོ་ཅན་གྱིས་རྟོགས་པ་སྟེ།
དེ་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ལ་ནི་ལོ་རྟོག་སེལ།།


"Absolute Truth is not an object of analytical discourse or great discriminating wisdom,
It is realized through the blessing grace of the Guru and fortunate Karmic potential.
Like this, mistaken ideas of discriminating wisdom are clarified."
- (Kyabje Bokar Rinpoche, from his summary of "The Ocean of Definitive Meaning")

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Tsongkhapafan
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by Tsongkhapafan » Sun Nov 06, 2016 11:57 pm

conebeckham wrote:
Tsongkhapafan wrote:
You can't say that something is pure if it's filled with impurity!
I can, if it's mixed with incidental impurities. Water can be dirty, but it is still water. It's nature is pure water, and always will be.
What do we call water with dirt in it? Dirty water! It's not pure water, everyone understands this. It becomes pure when the impurity is removed. A mind mixed with impurity is not a pure mind, even if the impurity is adventitious.
It is precisely because of the function or existence of Buddhanature that we have a path. I want to make it clear, though....I am speaking from a certain perspective when I say the aggregates are the wisdom buddhas, etc.....but they are not "created" by practice. Neither can we be dishonest and say we are without defilements. But those defilements are incidental, and not permanent state. Buddhahood is the removal of stains and the blossoming of Buddha nature into Buddhahood--but it is not created.
Buddhahood is clearly created as before following a spiritual path there was no Buddhahood. In Tantra, sometimes generation stage is called 'creation stage'. It's the realisation of a creative yoga. Generation stage creates a blueprint for enlightenment in the form of the Deity body, mandala and so forth. Before this practice, there is no Deity, mandala, etc. The Illusory body is created by completion stage yogas so you cannot say that Buddhahood is not created.

You can say that phenomena are naturally pure in that they are empty of inherent existence from the beginning and this doesn't need to be created, but Buddhahood itself is clearly a process of creation and purification - both processes are needed for enlightenment to be attained.

A sculptor creating a statue does not chip away at the stone to reveal a statue that already exists within the stone. He uses his skill and imagination to sculpt a new image. It is an act of creation. Buddhahood is also like this - we use the spiritual technology of Sutra and Tantra to create enlightenment.
I don't think we should denigrate others, and that does sadden me. But I also don't think we should make the sorts of absurd assertions you made, "hey-maybe you should study some tantra!" when it's obvious to all that we've all studied some tantra. Your tactic was a denigration, it was just a bit more passive-aggressive. Malcolm is more direct, and also, perhaps, a better manager of his time than I.
Yes, I admit that was a mistake, it was passive aggressive, and I regret it but from my perspective, his answers appeared to be from someone who has never studied and doesn't understand Tantra.

I don't understand why you feel the need to defend Malcolm all the time but that's irrelevant to this discussion.

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conebeckham
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by conebeckham » Mon Nov 07, 2016 1:28 am

Tsongkhapafan wrote:
conebeckham wrote:
Tsongkhapafan wrote:
You can't say that something is pure if it's filled with impurity!
I can, if it's mixed with incidental impurities. Water can be dirty, but it is still water. It's nature is pure water, and always will be.
What do we call water with dirt in it? Dirty water!
yes, but water nonetheless.
not pure water, everyone understands this. It becomes pure when the impurity is removed. A mind mixed with impurity is not a pure mind,
The nature of mind is beyond purity and impurity of mind.
It is precisely because of the function or existence of Buddhanature that we have a path. I want to make it clear, though....I am speaking from a certain perspective when I say the aggregates are the wisdom buddhas, etc.....but they are not "created" by practice. Neither can we be dishonest and say we are without defilements. But those defilements are incidental, and not permanent state. Buddhahood is the removal of stains and the blossoming of Buddha nature into Buddhahood--but it is not created.


You can say that phenomena are naturally pure in that they are empty of inherent existence from the beginning and this doesn't need to be created, but Buddhahood itself is clearly a process of creation and purification - both processes are needed for enlightenment to be attained.

A sculptor creating a statue does not chip away at the stone to reveal a statue that already exists within the stone.
some artists say otherwise, but that's beside the point.

I do not think "creation" of Buddhahood is the appropriate explanation of practice , or even a possibility, really. But I practice so-called "creation stage" daily...
དམ་པའི་དོན་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ཆེ་བ་དང་།
རྟོག་གེའི་ཡུལ་མིན་བླ་མའི་བྱིན་རླབས་དང་།
སྐལ་ལྡན་ལས་འཕྲོ་ཅན་གྱིས་རྟོགས་པ་སྟེ།
དེ་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ལ་ནི་ལོ་རྟོག་སེལ།།


"Absolute Truth is not an object of analytical discourse or great discriminating wisdom,
It is realized through the blessing grace of the Guru and fortunate Karmic potential.
Like this, mistaken ideas of discriminating wisdom are clarified."
- (Kyabje Bokar Rinpoche, from his summary of "The Ocean of Definitive Meaning")

Malcolm
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by Malcolm » Mon Nov 07, 2016 2:33 pm

Tsongkhapafan wrote: Buddhahood is clearly created as before following a spiritual path there was no Buddhahood. In Tantra, sometimes generation stage is called 'creation stage'. It's the realisation of a creative yoga. Generation stage creates a blueprint for enlightenment in the form of the Deity body, mandala and so forth. Before this practice, there is no Deity, mandala, etc. The Illusory body is created by completion stage yogas so you cannot say that Buddhahood is not created.
If Buddhahood is created, it is conditioned, and if it is conditioned, it is impermanent. "All conditioned phenomena are impermanent."

Jeff
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by Jeff » Mon Nov 07, 2016 3:50 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Tsongkhapafan wrote: Buddhahood is clearly created as before following a spiritual path there was no Buddhahood. In Tantra, sometimes generation stage is called 'creation stage'. It's the realisation of a creative yoga. Generation stage creates a blueprint for enlightenment in the form of the Deity body, mandala and so forth. Before this practice, there is no Deity, mandala, etc. The Illusory body is created by completion stage yogas so you cannot say that Buddhahood is not created.
If Buddhahood is created, it is conditioned, and if it is conditioned, it is impermanent. "All conditioned phenomena are impermanent."
The obstructions to buddhahood are cleared away...

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Tsongkhapafan
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by Tsongkhapafan » Mon Nov 07, 2016 4:12 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Tsongkhapafan wrote: Buddhahood is clearly created as before following a spiritual path there was no Buddhahood. In Tantra, sometimes generation stage is called 'creation stage'. It's the realisation of a creative yoga. Generation stage creates a blueprint for enlightenment in the form of the Deity body, mandala and so forth. Before this practice, there is no Deity, mandala, etc. The Illusory body is created by completion stage yogas so you cannot say that Buddhahood is not created.
If Buddhahood is created, it is conditioned, and if it is conditioned, it is impermanent. "All conditioned phenomena are impermanent."
The Nature Body, the emptiness of Buddha's mind is permanent. The Wisdom Truth Body is Buddha's mind and it is impermanent, a functioning thing. If this were not the case, enlightenment would be pointless because permanent things cannot produce effects and therefore Buddhas would be unable to emanate anything or to benefit living beings by appearing as Teachers or by giving blessings. Just because something is impermanent doesn't mean that it cannot be eternal. Our mental continuum is impermanent but eternal - it has no beginning and no end. It is the same for Buddha's mind; even though it is momentary, it is eternally pure because it lacks the conditions to become impure.

Emptiness is permanent but not necessarily eternal because it depends on conventional truth. For example, the emptiness of a chair exists only for as long as a chair exists. When the chair ceases, so does the emptiness of the chair; Emptiness is permanent in the sense that it is a permanent lack of inherent existence.

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Tsongkhapafan
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by Tsongkhapafan » Mon Nov 07, 2016 4:17 pm

conebeckham wrote: The nature of mind is beyond purity and impurity of mind.
The ultimate nature of the mind is beyond purity and impurity, the conventional nature is not.

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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by DGA » Mon Nov 07, 2016 4:23 pm

Tsongkhapafan wrote:
The Nature Body, the emptiness of Buddha's mind is permanent. The Wisdom Truth Body is Buddha's mind and it is impermanent, a functioning thing. If this were not the case, enlightenment would be pointless because permanent things cannot produce effects and therefore Buddhas would be unable to emanate anything or to benefit living beings by appearing as Teachers or by giving blessings. Just because something is impermanent doesn't mean that it cannot be eternal. Our mental continuum is impermanent but eternal - it has no beginning and no end. It is the same for Buddha's mind; even though it is momentary, it is eternally pure because it lacks the conditions to become impure.
please help me understand you better. Of "nature body" and "wisdom truth body," which is Dharmakaya, which is sambhogakaya, etc?

How can a mental continuum be impermanent and eternal?
Emptiness is permanent but not necessarily eternal because it depends on conventional truth. For example, the emptiness of a chair exists only for as long as a chair exists. When the chair ceases, so does the emptiness of the chair; Emptiness is permanent in the sense that it is a permanent lack of inherent existence.
I've never seen or heard emptiness explained this way before. That may be because I am a poor student (I am), or because this is a novel explanation. Is this your thinking, or does it reflect a traditional source?

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Tsongkhapafan
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by Tsongkhapafan » Mon Nov 07, 2016 4:35 pm

DGA wrote: please help me understand you better. Of "nature body" and "wisdom truth body," which is Dharmakaya, which is sambhogakaya, etc?
How can a mental continuum be impermanent and eternal?
The Dharmakaya of Buddha has two aspects which are called the Nature Body and the Wisdom Truth Body. The Wisdom Truth Body is Buddha's omniscient mind and it is a functioning thing and the emptiness or ultimate nature of his mind is called the Nature Body. They are one nature - the mere appearance of Buddha's omniscient mind arises moment by moment, and each moment is empty of inherent existence.

The mental continuum is eternal in the sense that it consists of moments, each of which produces the next moment, and this process is without beginning or end so it is eternal. Each moment of mind has always produced the subsequent moment of mind and so individually each moment is impermanent, but the mental continuum will never cease and in this sense it is eternal.
Emptiness is permanent but not necessarily eternal because it depends on conventional truth. For example, the emptiness of a chair exists only for as long as a chair exists. When the chair ceases, so does the emptiness of the chair; Emptiness is permanent in the sense that it is a permanent lack of inherent existence.
I've never seen or heard emptiness explained this way before. That may be because I am a poor student (I am), or because this is a novel explanation. Is this your thinking, or does it reflect a traditional source?[/quote]

This is my thinking and it has come about from my contemplations and meditations on emptiness over the years. If you think it's wrong, please explain why; I'm open to changing my mind if my view is wrong.

Malcolm
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by Malcolm » Mon Nov 07, 2016 4:37 pm

Tsongkhapafan wrote:
Emptiness is permanent but not necessarily eternal because it depends on conventional truth.
Therefore, buddhahood too is merely a convention and does not exist apart from a designation. That's ok with me.

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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by BuddhaFollower » Mon Nov 07, 2016 4:38 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Nor this:

Image

Buddhas possess none of these forms.

M
You see Buddhas with topknots etc. in the visions of thogal.
Just recognize the conceptualizing mind.

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conebeckham
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by conebeckham » Mon Nov 07, 2016 5:59 pm

Tsongkhapafan wrote:
conebeckham wrote: The nature of mind is beyond purity and impurity of mind.
The ultimate nature of the mind is beyond purity and impurity, the conventional nature is not.
Just to clarify, I should have said "Nature of Mind" as a proper noun, distinguishing it from "mind," another proper noun.

The Tibetan terms would be Sem Nyi (sems.nyid) for "Nature of Mind," and Sem (sems) for mind, or the mental consciousness, discursive thinking, etc.

Your analysis holds true for sems--the ultimate nature of mind is emptiness, as thoughts, feelings, perceptions, etc.a re conditioned phenomena- everything contained in ordinary experience is conventional and dualistic, subject to judgements regarding purity, etc.

But I was referring to the difference between sems.nyid and sems.
དམ་པའི་དོན་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ཆེ་བ་དང་།
རྟོག་གེའི་ཡུལ་མིན་བླ་མའི་བྱིན་རླབས་དང་།
སྐལ་ལྡན་ལས་འཕྲོ་ཅན་གྱིས་རྟོགས་པ་སྟེ།
དེ་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ལ་ནི་ལོ་རྟོག་སེལ།།


"Absolute Truth is not an object of analytical discourse or great discriminating wisdom,
It is realized through the blessing grace of the Guru and fortunate Karmic potential.
Like this, mistaken ideas of discriminating wisdom are clarified."
- (Kyabje Bokar Rinpoche, from his summary of "The Ocean of Definitive Meaning")

A Ah Sha Sa Ma Ha
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by A Ah Sha Sa Ma Ha » Mon Nov 07, 2016 6:22 pm

How can anyone not remain ignorant
With so many secrets

To me , keeping truth from people
IS ignorance , and lying AND EVIL

I feel like I've. Wasted my life
Searching for truth
And. Love

I want a refund !!!!!

Malcolm
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by Malcolm » Mon Nov 07, 2016 6:56 pm

Tsongkhapafan wrote:
And your reasons for stating this are?

You obviously deny the existence of the Illusory Body of Highest Yoga Tantra which possesses limbs and appears in the aspect of the Deity. Looks like Father Tantra is a waste of time then according to you!
The Diamond Sūtra states, famously:
  • Anyone who sees me as form,
    anyone who knows me as sound,
    engage in mistaken effort.
    Those people who do not see me,
    see the dharmatā of the buddhas.
    Since the dharmakāya of the guides
    is not a knowable entity,
    it cannot be known.
The creation stage is not necessary as many Indian scholars such as Śri Simha and so on have argued. In the Śrīsarvaguhyavidhigarbhālaṃkāra-nāma, Mañjuśrīkīrti records their position:
  • The teaching of the creation stage and its means of conduct are taught as methods for refuting annihilationists, for proponents of the dependently originated result, and for some worldly people who are terrified of the profound meaning. Utterly pure, perfect buddhahood itself is an inconceivable pristine consciousness. Since that cannot arise from a dissimilar cause, here, emptiness —which is not perceptible as a sign, inconceivable, and the eliminator proliferation— is the supreme result that possessed when the yogi relies on the absence of thoughts.
Of course he complains that these Dzogchen practitioners have an invalid point of view, but this is because he does not understand the meaning of "absence of thoughts," in this case, the absence of thoughts referred refers to the nonconceptual direct perception of dharmatā. The latter does not require the creation stage since dharmatā is innate.

Malcolm
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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by Malcolm » Mon Nov 07, 2016 8:06 pm

BuddhaFollower wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
Nor this:

Image

Buddhas possess none of these forms.

M
You see Buddhas with topknots etc. in the visions of thogal.
Those buddha are inert appearances. They are like images projected onto a movie screen.

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Re: Ultimate Truth

Post by BuddhaFollower » Mon Nov 07, 2016 8:31 pm

Malcolm wrote:
BuddhaFollower wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
Nor this:

Image

Buddhas possess none of these forms.

M
You see Buddhas with topknots etc. in the visions of thogal.
Those buddha are inert appearances. They are like images projected onto a movie screen.
I understand that actually.

But you made it sound like these images are artifacts of Indian culture, when they are actually primordial to the elemental vayus flowing through the heart.
Just recognize the conceptualizing mind.

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