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Non conceptual thought

Posted: Wed Nov 14, 2018 1:57 am
by MatthewAngby

You have non-conceptual thought every time you encounter something new, every time you can't fit a new object or idea into the list of concepts you have generated and stored up during your life time.”

“When you first encounter a new device, you are not sure what to call it as you have never seen it before, that’s non conceptual thought. Then you Friend tells you, “I see you have found my new Space detector”, passing you the concept of “space detector”, hence taking you back to conceptal land.


This sounds like the most blank and agitated situation I have before , when I can’t find words to explain myself- so agitated, so depressing to not be able to explain what I’m trying to say. Does this really mean that buddhas who are non-conceptual cannot express themselves because they can’t find something to describe ? Why would you want to remain in a state where you cannot express or find words to describe something? It sounds awfully like a mind disorder - mind you, I say it as a disorder because it seems non conceptuality seems to me like a state where you can no longer know what an object is, and you are always in a state of wondering what the object is, thus like a child who is always confused and never getting the answers.

Re: Non conceptual thought

Posted: Thu Nov 15, 2018 8:46 am
by tingdzin
Not at all. Part of the problem is the word "thought". If you feel a splash of cold water on your face, you know exactly what it is and how it feels even before the concept "cold water" crosses your mind.But how best to explain that to someone?

The general thrust behind almost all forms of Buddhism is that words are indicators that point to reality, and and not reality itself. Confusing the two is a big mistake, confusing the pointing finger with the moon. To understand what Buddhism is talking about, though, we have to calm the mind down and shut off the ceaseless mental chatter that confuses us.

If an enlightened being wants to explain something, he may choose to use words to do so, if he recognizes that the you are still stuck on them (which we all are in the beginning), but he might just choose to throw cold water in your face (metaphorically or really) instead. He himself is well aware of what is going on.

Re: Non conceptual thought

Posted: Thu Nov 15, 2018 8:54 am
by Aryjna
MatthewAngby wrote:
Wed Nov 14, 2018 1:57 am

You have non-conceptual thought every time you encounter something new, every time you can't fit a new object or idea into the list of concepts you have generated and stored up during your life time.”

“When you first encounter a new device, you are not sure what to call it as you have never seen it before, that’s non conceptual thought. Then you Friend tells you, “I see you have found my new Space detector”, passing you the concept of “space detector”, hence taking you back to conceptal land.


This sounds like the most blank and agitated situation I have before , when I can’t find words to explain myself- so agitated, so depressing to not be able to explain what I’m trying to say. Does this really mean that buddhas who are non-conceptual cannot express themselves because they can’t find something to describe ? Why would you want to remain in a state where you cannot express or find words to describe something? It sounds awfully like a mind disorder - mind you, I say it as a disorder because it seems non conceptuality seems to me like a state where you can no longer know what an object is, and you are always in a state of wondering what the object is, thus like a child who is always confused and never getting the answers.
You have been asking the same thing in other words in many different threads since months ago. Why do you keep asking when you clearly ignore everything anyone says?

Re: Non conceptual thought

Posted: Thu Nov 15, 2018 9:22 am
by Astus
MatthewAngby wrote:
Wed Nov 14, 2018 1:57 am
This sounds like the most blank and agitated situation ... like a state where you can no longer know what an object is, and you are always in a state of wondering what the object is, thus like a child who is always confused and never getting the answers.
You are right. A blank mind is not a mind free from concepts but a mind stuck in dark ignorance. As the Platform Sutra (ch 4, BDK ed, p 43) summarises it nicely: "Nonthought is to be without thought in the context of thoughts." The point is not to block or eliminate experiences, but to have no attachment to, or identification with them.

Re: Non conceptual thought

Posted: Thu Nov 15, 2018 9:30 am
by Bristollad
Most adults who learned to tie there shoelaces properly as children, have a non-conceptual understanding of tying shoelaces.

When they were first learning they had to conceptualise the steps, maybe even saying them out loud. Later after much practise and frustration, they learnt to internally tick off the steps in their head as they completed the process. But now, after decades of practice, most have a non-conceptual understanding - the whole process is grasped as one whole thing. When they tie the shoelaces, they don't have to conceptually delineate and tick off each step - it's just done.

Is the understanding of the adult different from the not-knowing-how-to of the three year old? Yet both are non-conceptual states.

The difference between the Buddha's non-conceptual wisdom and our not-knowing is much greater than between the adult and 3 year old tying shoelaces.

Re: Non conceptual thought

Posted: Thu Nov 15, 2018 9:40 am
by Grigoris
:good:

And on that note, given the same discussion has occurred elsewhere too and the answers here are clear and concise...
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