Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

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katz_in_the_hat
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Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by katz_in_the_hat » Tue Feb 11, 2020 1:36 am

Are they separate schools? Or are they philosophical system included in all Mahayana schools? Would it be fair to say that they are types of Tibetan Buddhism or are they included in other types of Buddhism too?

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by zerwe » Tue Feb 11, 2020 2:55 am

Madhyamaka and Yogacara are philosophical tenets or views within the Mahayana and Vajrayana schools of Buddhism. While both are assumed philosophical leanings within Tibetan Buddhism, both have their origins in India.
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Anders
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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Anders » Tue Feb 11, 2020 10:40 am

They were schools, but as living traditions go they are essentially extinct.

Their relevance continues today though, as they provide the buildings blocks for many, if not all, of the modern schools that exist as living traditions today.
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As your companion in practice"

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Supramundane » Wed Feb 12, 2020 5:06 am

I believe there is a tradition of studying four different schools of thought in Tibetan Buddhism and two of them are the ones you mention (someone please correct me if i am wrong).

They are essentially from the same source but differ in the way they address certain questions, such as Buddhanature, cognitive/afflicted hindrances and whether or not the external world exists objectively...

Hope this helps.

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Feb 12, 2020 5:11 am

Anders wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 10:40 am
They were schools, but as living traditions go they are essentially extinct.
I object to this claim. I belong to the Madhyamaka School, and it is very much a living and vital tradition, which has its own tradition of ordination and so on.

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Anders » Wed Feb 12, 2020 6:32 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 5:11 am
Anders wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 10:40 am
They were schools, but as living traditions go they are essentially extinct.
I object to this claim. I belong to the Madhyamaka School, and it is very much a living and vital tradition, which has its own tradition of ordination and so on.
Can you expand on this? A Madhyamika school as distinct from Dzogchen, Sakhya, and so forth?
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"

--- Gandavyuha Sutra

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Caoimhghín » Wed Feb 12, 2020 6:42 pm

I assume he meant lineages of bodhisattva vows, one of which is attributed to Ven Nāgārjuna (my guess?), but I am curious too.
Last edited by Caoimhghín on Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
savi saghara aṇica di, savi saghara dukha di, savi dhama aṇatva di:
yada paśadi cakhkṣuma tada nivinadi dukha eṣo mago viśodhia.

"All formations are inconstant," he said.
"All formations are stressful," he said.
"All phenomena are selfless," he said.
When one sees this, one becomes adverse to stress, and this is the path of purity.

(Gāndhārī Dharmapada fragments)

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:00 pm

Anders wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 6:32 pm
Malcolm wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 5:11 am
Anders wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 10:40 am
They were schools, but as living traditions go they are essentially extinct.
I object to this claim. I belong to the Madhyamaka School, and it is very much a living and vital tradition, which has its own tradition of ordination and so on.
Can you expand on this? A Madhyamika school as distinct from Dzogchen, Sakhya, and so forth?
Generally speaking, All schools in Tibet claim to belong to the Madhyamaka school, whether we are talking about Nyingma, Kagyu, Geluk, or Sakya. Everyone accepts Nāgārjuna as the authoritative voice on the correct view of the Buddha. To say Madhyamaka is an extinct school is a disservice.

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:02 pm

Caoimhghín wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 6:42 pm
I assume he meant lineages of bodhisattva vows, one of one is attributed to Ven Nāgārjuna (my guess?), but I am curious too.
Yes, partly, but gzhan stong pas also distance themselves from the mind-only school, even if they consider the mind-only position to be mistaken reinterpret key yogacāra texts from a Madhyamaka perspective.

So in point of fact, the Madhyamaka school is alive and well in Tibet, and I am a partisan of that school.

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Caoimhghín » Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:29 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:02 pm
Caoimhghín wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 6:42 pm
I assume he meant lineages of bodhisattva vows, one of one is attributed to Ven Nāgārjuna (my guess?), but I am curious too.
Yes, partly, but gzhan stong pas also distance themselves from the mind-only school, even if they consider the mind-only position to be mistaken reinterpret key yogacāra texts from a Madhyamaka perspective.

So in point of fact, the Madhyamaka school is alive and well in Tibet, and I am a partisan of that school.
I had no clue that the lineages of bodhisattva vows could be indicative of Rangtong-Shentong divisions. Can you elaborate?
savi saghara aṇica di, savi saghara dukha di, savi dhama aṇatva di:
yada paśadi cakhkṣuma tada nivinadi dukha eṣo mago viśodhia.

"All formations are inconstant," he said.
"All formations are stressful," he said.
"All phenomena are selfless," he said.
When one sees this, one becomes adverse to stress, and this is the path of purity.

(Gāndhārī Dharmapada fragments)

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:30 pm

Caoimhghín wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:29 pm
Malcolm wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:02 pm
Caoimhghín wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 6:42 pm
I assume he meant lineages of bodhisattva vows, one of one is attributed to Ven Nāgārjuna (my guess?), but I am curious too.
Yes, partly, but gzhan stong pas also distance themselves from the mind-only school, even if they consider the mind-only position to be mistaken reinterpret key yogacāra texts from a Madhyamaka perspective.

So in point of fact, the Madhyamaka school is alive and well in Tibet, and I am a partisan of that school.
I had no clue that the lineages of bodhisattva vows could be indicative of Rangtong-Shentong divisions. Can you elaborate?
No, that is not what I meant; what I meant was that gzhan stong pas also consider themselves Madhyamaka.

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Caoimhghín » Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:39 pm

Ah, makes sense.
savi saghara aṇica di, savi saghara dukha di, savi dhama aṇatva di:
yada paśadi cakhkṣuma tada nivinadi dukha eṣo mago viśodhia.

"All formations are inconstant," he said.
"All formations are stressful," he said.
"All phenomena are selfless," he said.
When one sees this, one becomes adverse to stress, and this is the path of purity.

(Gāndhārī Dharmapada fragments)

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:41 pm

Caoimhghín wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:39 pm
Ah, makes sense.
The yogacāra bodhisattva lineage also survives in Tibet, as it was introduced by Atisha, nominally a Madhyamaka, but partial to the more detailed conduct entailed by the yogacāra lineage vows.

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Sentient Light » Wed Feb 12, 2020 9:03 pm

I've gotten in trouble before for saying this is true of all zen lineages, but in at least the Vietnamese traditions, we could arguably say that they are aligned wholly with the Yogacara school. The Yogacarabhumisastra is a significant part of the post-samanera monastic curriculum. Nagarjuna is studied, but most of this is confined to the Mahaprajnaparamita Upadesa, and becomes before the YCBS. I don't think many, if any, Sanlun commentators are given special attention, but Xuanzang and his disciples are.

However, this may have only been introduced in the early 20th century, or late 19th, when there was a big push to de-Siniticize Vietnamese Buddhism (an effort that continues to this day), and an attempt to return to the 'Indian roots' of the Vietnamese tradition--I haven't found much documentation on curriculum before the early 1900s until the 17th century, and in the 17th century, the Sinitic influence was significant. So i think more than likely this is a Yogacara revival movement more than a continuous lineage.
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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Anders » Wed Feb 12, 2020 10:15 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:00 pm
Anders wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 6:32 pm
Malcolm wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 5:11 am


I object to this claim. I belong to the Madhyamaka School, and it is very much a living and vital tradition, which has its own tradition of ordination and so on.
Can you expand on this? A Madhyamika school as distinct from Dzogchen, Sakhya, and so forth?
Generally speaking, All schools in Tibet claim to belong to the Madhyamaka school, whether we are talking about Nyingma, Kagyu, Geluk, or Sakya. Everyone accepts Nāgārjuna as the authoritative voice on the correct view of the Buddha. To say Madhyamaka is an extinct school is a disservice.
I would call that overstating the case then. Heritage does not equal identity.
None of those schools would be recognisable to an Indian madhyamikan as madhyamika. They may embrace its view of emptiness, but their practices, view of the path, additional framework and so forth all distinguish them from madhyamika as it existed as an actual school.
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"

--- Gandavyuha Sutra

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Caoimhghín » Wed Feb 12, 2020 10:18 pm

I guess the issue is the word "school" maybe. A "Tathāgatagarbha school" doesn't exist as a discreet entity within sectarian Buddhism, but people still subscribe to that philosophy anyways.

Tibetan Buddhism is more Madhyamaka-conforming than, say, Tiāntāi, which also only vaguely exists as an independent mainstream school in modern sectarian Buddhism, and this admission is coming from someone who has spent quite a while trying to make the square peg of modern Tiāntāi fit in the round hole of Madhyamaka.
savi saghara aṇica di, savi saghara dukha di, savi dhama aṇatva di:
yada paśadi cakhkṣuma tada nivinadi dukha eṣo mago viśodhia.

"All formations are inconstant," he said.
"All formations are stressful," he said.
"All phenomena are selfless," he said.
When one sees this, one becomes adverse to stress, and this is the path of purity.

(Gāndhārī Dharmapada fragments)

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Feb 12, 2020 10:32 pm

Anders wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 10:15 pm
I would call that overstating the case then. Heritage does not equal identity.
None of those schools would be recognisable to an Indian madhyamikan as madhyamika. They may embrace its view of emptiness, but their practices, view of the path, additional framework and so forth all distinguish them from madhyamika as it existed as an actual school.
Yes, of course they would be. But if you wish to be closed-minded, that is your prerogative.

I don't need your permission to consider myself and my tradition to be living exponents of the Madhyamaka school. Considering that the largest single body of Madhyamaka literature was composed by Tibetans, I would say it is a pretty fair bet that Tibetan Buddhists are Madhyamaka.

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Wed Feb 12, 2020 10:42 pm

IDK, I mean, two of the Tibetan schools tend to in a practical sense de-emphasize philosophy as a part of their identity. Whether this is actually true in practice is another question entirely of course, but I can't see a Kagyupa or Nyingmapa saying that they represent the "Madhayamaka school", can you, have you?
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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Virgo » Wed Feb 12, 2020 10:44 pm

As a Dzogchen practitioner I've always considered myself to be by default part of the Madhyamaka school.

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Re: Are madhyamaka and yogacara considered schools of buddhism?

Post by Caoimhghín » Wed Feb 12, 2020 10:46 pm

Here's the issue, the Madhyamaka is both Ven Nāgārjuna's school and the Buddhadharma itself. There are two Madhyamakas and one.

How many times does the Buddha say, "Rejecting these extremes, the Buddha teaches by way of the middle," (paraphrase) whereupon there follows an exegesis of dependent origination?
savi saghara aṇica di, savi saghara dukha di, savi dhama aṇatva di:
yada paśadi cakhkṣuma tada nivinadi dukha eṣo mago viśodhia.

"All formations are inconstant," he said.
"All formations are stressful," he said.
"All phenomena are selfless," he said.
When one sees this, one becomes adverse to stress, and this is the path of purity.

(Gāndhārī Dharmapada fragments)

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