Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

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Polarbear
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Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by Polarbear » Mon Jun 25, 2018 11:28 am

I would like to excuse myself beforehand if I'm not able to express this in an understandable manner. I'm aware of pratitysamutpada, but what I'm wondering is whether everything is just interconnected or if also everything is part of something bigger, like the universe? I've heard someone expressing reality as a round ball with light inside of it, and that we and everything around us are just light shining through small pinholes of the ball. Is this something that is discussed or am I just treading on irrelevant topics? At the same time I'm aware of the concept of anatman stretching itself to include the universe, and to mean that there also isn't a "world self" aside from the non-existence of our individual selves.

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Astus
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by Astus » Mon Jun 25, 2018 1:22 pm

Polarbear wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 11:28 am
is just interconnected or if also everything is part of something bigger
Interconnected means how one thing is always caused and sustained by other factors, in other words, nothing is self-reliant. In case of a human body, it cannot function without air and food for instance. Contemplating that sort of dependency one should recognise that the body cannot be trusted, as it exists only because of factors we do not control.
The point of the teaching of interdependence is not to imagine some sort of magical bond between all beings, but to recognise how fragile and causally bound life is. Then it becomes clearer that assuming a oneness or something bigger is also the wrong approach that looks for stability where there is none.
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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Vasana
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by Vasana » Mon Jun 25, 2018 2:39 pm

Astus wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 1:22 pm
Polarbear wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 11:28 am
is just interconnected or if also everything is part of something bigger
...
The point of the teaching of interdependence is not to imagine some sort of magical bond between all beings, but to recognise how fragile and causally bound life is. ...
Magical or not, there is at least some connection between all beings as taught in Mahayana.both in terms of 'mother sentient beings' and the fact that the clothes on our back, food on our plate, technology were using and so on is due to the kindness and/or efforts of others.
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Astus
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by Astus » Mon Jun 25, 2018 3:29 pm

Vasana wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 2:39 pm
there is at least some connection between all beings as taught in Mahayana.both in terms of 'mother sentient beings' and the fact that the clothes on our back, food on our plate, technology were using and so on is due to the kindness and/or efforts of others.
Contemplating that samsara has no beginning (SN 15.14) is meant to raise the sense of renunciation, while considering other people's kindness is to develop gratitude (AN 2.31). Neither are about establishing the concept that there is an invisible connection. And the reason for that is that all beings are responsible for their own actions and reap the fruits of their own deeds (MN 135).
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"

Simon E.
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by Simon E. » Mon Jun 25, 2018 3:36 pm

Polarbear wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 11:28 am
I would like to excuse myself beforehand if I'm not able to express this in an understandable manner. I'm aware of pratitysamutpada, but what I'm wondering is whether everything is just interconnected or if also everything is part of something bigger, like the universe? I've heard someone expressing reality as a round ball with light inside of it, and that we and everything around us are just light shining through small pinholes of the ball. Is this something that is discussed or am I just treading on irrelevant topics? At the same time I'm aware of the concept of anatman stretching itself to include the universe, and to mean that there also isn't a "world self" aside from the non-existence of our individual selves.
Everything that arises does so dependently on everything else..and is a constant state of flux. So 'oneness' is not an option. 'Oneness' simply has no meaning..it does not compute.
The Vedanta, by contrast, teaches that everything changes but that there is One Reality behind all things that is unchanged and unchanging..The Buddha specifically and categorically denied that view.
Gone fishin' :smile:

boundless
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by boundless » Mon Jun 25, 2018 4:03 pm

Hello all,

maybe the OP is referring to the teaching of "interpenetration" of the Huayan school.
Here there is an article of the "Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy" about the third patriarch Ven. Fazang.

Or possibly he has in mind the (related) the concept of interbeing of Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh (the link is to an article on Trycicle).

All the best,

:anjali:

Marc
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by Marc » Mon Jun 25, 2018 4:15 pm

Hi everyone !  

May be is it worth pointing that Pratītyasamutpāda does not mean "interconnectedness" but "dependent origination", to chose one translation amongst many.

"Interconnectedness" thought as some kind of "interpenetration", where "everything is connected with everything else, at every single point in time and space" is a central theme of the Huayan school of Chinese Buddhism, but, as far as I can tell, this view is rather marginal if you take Buddhism as a whole.
 

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Vasana
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by Vasana » Mon Jun 25, 2018 4:20 pm

Astus wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 3:29 pm
Vasana wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 2:39 pm
there is at least some connection between all beings as taught in Mahayana.both in terms of 'mother sentient beings' and the fact that the clothes on our back, food on our plate, technology were using and so on is due to the kindness and/or efforts of others.
Contemplating that samsara has no beginning (SN 15.14) is meant to raise the sense of renunciation, while considering other people's kindness is to develop gratitude (AN 2.31). Neither are about establishing the concept that there is an invisible connection. And the reason for that is that all beings are responsible for their own actions and reap the fruits of their own deeds (MN 135).
Sure. Connection used in a nominal sense is fine.
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

Polarbear
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by Polarbear » Mon Jun 25, 2018 5:01 pm

Thanks for the answers. They made everything clearer.

Simon E.
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by Simon E. » Mon Jun 25, 2018 5:04 pm

Marc wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 4:15 pm
Hi everyone !  

May be is it worth pointing that Pratītyasamutpāda does not mean "interconnectedness" but "dependent origination", to chose one translation amongst many.

"Interconnectedness" thought as some kind of "interpenetration", where "everything is connected with everything else, at every single point in time and space" is a central theme of the Huayan school of Chinese Buddhism, but, as far as I can tell, this view is rather marginal if you take Buddhism as a whole.
 
I mean no criticism of Thich Nhat Hahn when I say that a misunderstanding of his teaching on 'Interbeing' has sewn much confusion..on the surface he appears to be supporting the ideas of Advaita.
And some do not venture below the surface.
Gone fishin' :smile:

smcj
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by smcj » Mon Jun 25, 2018 5:16 pm

The Buddha specifically and categorically denied that view.
True, Sakyamuni specifically and categorically denied that view. No doubt about that.

But all the Karmapas since Ranjung Dorje (Karmapa III, 1284-1339) have embraced it. So it kinda depends on which authority you’re referencing.
I support Mingyur R and HHDL in their positions against Lama abuse.

Simon E.
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by Simon E. » Mon Jun 25, 2018 5:44 pm

smcj wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 5:16 pm
The Buddha specifically and categorically denied that view.
True, Sakyamuni specifically and categorically denied that view. No doubt about that.

But all the Karmapas since Ranjung Dorje (Karmapa III, 1284-1339) have embraced it. So it kinda depends on which authority you’re referencing.
No they did not.
But I am not getting into that with you.
It's bad for you.
Physically and psychologically.
Gone fishin' :smile:

krodha
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by krodha » Mon Jun 25, 2018 5:57 pm

smcj wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 5:16 pm
The Buddha specifically and categorically denied that view.
True, Sakyamuni specifically and categorically denied that view. No doubt about that.

But all the Karmapas since Ranjung Dorje (Karmapa III, 1284-1339) have embraced it. So it kinda depends on which authority you’re referencing.
You seem to enjoy molding gzhan stong into whatever you want it to be, rather than meeting it on its own terms.

Perhaps your affinity in general revolves around your perceived malleability of the system since non-gzhan stong systems rob you of that leeway.

Gzhan stong is not a monistic view and does not advocate for a “oneness.”

boundless
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by boundless » Mon Jun 25, 2018 6:15 pm

Also,

the links posted here might be of interest!

smcj
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by smcj » Mon Jun 25, 2018 6:42 pm

krodha wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 5:57 pm
smcj wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 5:16 pm
The Buddha specifically and categorically denied that view.
True, Sakyamuni specifically and categorically denied that view. No doubt about that.

But all the Karmapas since Ranjung Dorje (Karmapa III, 1284-1339) have embraced it. So it kinda depends on which authority you’re referencing.
You seem to enjoy molding gzhan stong into whatever you want it to be, rather than meeting it on its own terms.

Perhaps your affinity in general revolves around your perceived malleability of the system since non-gzhan stong systems rob you of that leeway.

Gzhan stong is not a monistic view and does not advocate for a “oneness.”
Khenpo Tsultrim is one of the leading proponents of the Karma Kagyu view on Shentong alive today. And he is certainly aware of the taboo of having the same view as Advaita Vedanta. So when Malcolm bragged...
Malcolm wrote: I once forced Khenpo Tsultrim Gyatso to admit (I have a witness, incidentally) that there was no substantial difference between Advaita Vedanta and Gzhan stong in terms of how they presented their view.
...that either means that Malcolm made it up, or that he had Khenpo cornered so that he couldn’t escape admitting to it. Personally I have enough regard for Malcolm’s expertise that I see his victory as completely plausible.

Plus, in Kongtrul’s ToK Book 1, “Myriad Worlds”, the last cosmology he speaks of is the Dzogchen cosmology. He makes sure to preface the discussion as to how Ultimate Reality is before there are any sentient beings or buddhas inhabiting it. That’s kinda Advaita like, don’t ya think?

But hey, if you don’t like it you don’t have to buy it. Personally I’m gravitating towards a type of Rongtong view Situ R talks about in his “Creation and Completion” book. But I’m busy at the moment and can’t quote it.
I support Mingyur R and HHDL in their positions against Lama abuse.

krodha
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by krodha » Mon Jun 25, 2018 6:55 pm

smcj wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 6:42 pm
Khenpo Tsultrim is one of the leading proponents of the Karma Kagyu view on Shentong alive today. And he is certainly aware of the taboo of having the same view as Advaita Vedanta. So when Malcolm bragged...
Malcolm wrote: I once forced Khenpo Tsultrim Gyatso to admit (I have a witness, incidentally) that there was no substantial difference between Advaita Vedanta and Gzhan stong in terms of how they presented their view.
...that either means that Malcolm made it up, or that he had Khenpo cornered so that he couldn’t escape admitting to it. Personally I have enough regard for Malcolm’s expertise that I see his victory as completely plausible.
Gzhan stong and Advaita both promulgate an ultimate truth that is devoid of what is considered to be relative.

Also gzhan stong’s ultimate nature, in terms of the result, is fully formed at the time of their basis. The purusa of Advaita is also fully formed at all times.

Nothing about monism is proposed on gzhan stong’s side.
smcj wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 6:42 pm
Plus, in Kongtrul’s ToK Book 1, “Myriad Worlds”, the last cosmology he speaks of is the Dzogchen cosmology. He makes sure to preface the discussion as to how Ultimate Reality is before there are any sentient beings or buddhas inhabiting it. That’s kinda Advaita like, don’t ya think?
Certainly not.

smcj
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by smcj » Mon Jun 25, 2018 6:57 pm

Correction: Situ R’s “Ground, Path and Friution” Rangtong Ma-yin-gag view. It’s a little more elegant than Shentong but still has a positive quality to emptiness. It’s what I suspect Mipham R was talking about.
Last edited by smcj on Mon Jun 25, 2018 7:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
I support Mingyur R and HHDL in their positions against Lama abuse.

krodha
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by krodha » Mon Jun 25, 2018 7:00 pm

smcj wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 6:57 pm
Correction: Situ R’s “Ground, Path and Friution” Rangtong Ma-yin-gag view.
Correction to what?

smcj
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by smcj » Mon Jun 25, 2018 7:02 pm

krodha wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 7:00 pm
smcj wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 6:57 pm
Correction: Situ R’s “Ground, Path and Friution” Rangtong Ma-yin-gag view.
Correction to what?
My post
Personally I’m gravitating towards a type of Rongtong view Situ R talks about in his “Creation and Completion” book. But I’m busy at the moment and can’t quote it.
I support Mingyur R and HHDL in their positions against Lama abuse.

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Snowbear
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Re: Is everything "one" or are we just inter-connected without a center?

Post by Snowbear » Mon Jun 25, 2018 11:26 pm

smcj, what is the Rangtong Ma-yin-gag view?

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