Is there a pure classical Madhyamaka school in existence today?

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Dgj
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Is there a pure classical Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Dgj » Wed Apr 29, 2020 5:27 pm

I am aware that there are many schools which teach Madhyamaka but as far as I know all of them are combined with Yogacara to varying degrees.

Are there any schools that only teach classical, pre Yogacara synthesis Madhyamaka?

If not, are there any that teach Madhyamaka and other schools combined but do not teach Yogacara?

I am not looking for schools like the Gelug school, for example, which teaches Madhyamaka as the highest teaching but they also teach Yogacara.
Don't assume my words are correct. Do your research.

Malcolm
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Re: Is there a pure Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Apr 29, 2020 5:31 pm

Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 5:27 pm
I am aware that there are many schools which teach Madhyamaka but as far as I know all of them are combined with Yogacara to varying degrees.

Are there any schools that only teach Madhyamaka?

If not, are there any that teach Madhyamaka and other schools combined but do not teach Yogacara?

I am not looking for schools like the Gelug school, for example, which teaches Madhyamaka as the highest teaching but they also teach Yogacara.
There are four tenet systems. One cannot properly understand the length and breadth of Madhyamaka unless you understand the point of view Abhidharma and Yogacāra, though the latter is only critiqued by Mādhyamika authors after the 5th century.

Dgj
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Re: Is there a pure Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Dgj » Wed Apr 29, 2020 7:22 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 5:31 pm
Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 5:27 pm
I am aware that there are many schools which teach Madhyamaka but as far as I know all of them are combined with Yogacara to varying degrees.

Are there any schools that only teach Madhyamaka?

If not, are there any that teach Madhyamaka and other schools combined but do not teach Yogacara?

I am not looking for schools like the Gelug school, for example, which teaches Madhyamaka as the highest teaching but they also teach Yogacara.
There are four tenet systems. One cannot properly understand the length and breadth of Madhyamaka unless you understand the point of view Abhidharma and Yogacāra, though the latter is only critiqued by Mādhyamika authors after the 5th century.
Thanks.

Is there any record of Nagarjuna or other classical Madhyamaka teachers, before the Yogacara-Madhyamaka merger, stating that one must understand the point of view of Yogacara to understand Madhyamaka?
Don't assume my words are correct. Do your research.

Malcolm
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Re: Is there a pure Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Apr 29, 2020 7:40 pm

Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 7:22 pm

Is there any record of Nagarjuna or other classical Madhyamaka teachers, before the Yogacara-Madhyamaka merger, stating that one must understand the point of view of Yogacara to understand Madhyamaka?
No. Yogacāra really emerged only as an independent Mahāyāna school in the fifth and sixth century CE. Thus, the target of Nāgārjuna's critiques were only Abhidharmikas.

Also, there was never a Yogacāra-Madyamaka merger, so to speak.

Both Mādhyamika scholars and Yogācara scholars were working on the basis of the same sets of sūtras; but their understanding and classification of these sūtras differed.

In any case, the pre-Yogacāra scholars would be Nāgārjuna and Āryadeva. Even though the latter's text has the colophon title "The Yoga Practice of Bodhisattvas (bodhisattvayogacārya) composed in Four Hundred Verses," this has nothing to do with the later Yogacāra School of Maitreya, Asanga, and Vasubandhu.

Dgj
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Re: Is there a pure Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Dgj » Wed Apr 29, 2020 7:51 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 7:40 pm
Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 7:22 pm

Is there any record of Nagarjuna or other classical Madhyamaka teachers, before the Yogacara-Madhyamaka merger, stating that one must understand the point of view of Yogacara to understand Madhyamaka?
No. Yogacāra really emerged only as an independent Mahāyāna school in the fifth and sixth century CE. Thus, the target of Nāgārjuna's critiques were only Abhidharmikas.

Also, there was never a Yogacāra-Madyamaka merger, so to speak.

Both Mādhyamika scholars and Yogācara scholars were working on the basis of the same sets of sūtras; but their understanding and classification of these sūtras differed.

In any case, the pre-Yogacāra scholars would be Nāgārjuna and Āryadeva. Even though the latter's text has the colophon title "The Yoga Practice of Bodhisattvas (bodhisattvayogacārya) composed in Four Hundred Verses," this has nothing to do with the later Yogacāra School of Maitreya, Asanga, and Vasubandhu.
Okay, thanks. Since this is the case, we can assume that Nagarjuna and other classical Madhyamaka teachers would not have required their students to learn and understand Yogacara.

Therefore, since I am looking into learning about classical Madhyamaka, it seems reasonable to also assume that I need not learn Yogacara, as classical Madhyamaka, per it's founder and other authorities and masters, does not require a previous study of Yogacara.
Don't assume my words are correct. Do your research.

Malcolm
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Re: Is there a pure Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Apr 29, 2020 7:55 pm

Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 7:51 pm
Malcolm wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 7:40 pm
Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 7:22 pm

Is there any record of Nagarjuna or other classical Madhyamaka teachers, before the Yogacara-Madhyamaka merger, stating that one must understand the point of view of Yogacara to understand Madhyamaka?
No. Yogacāra really emerged only as an independent Mahāyāna school in the fifth and sixth century CE. Thus, the target of Nāgārjuna's critiques were only Abhidharmikas.

Also, there was never a Yogacāra-Madyamaka merger, so to speak.

Both Mādhyamika scholars and Yogācara scholars were working on the basis of the same sets of sūtras; but their understanding and classification of these sūtras differed.

In any case, the pre-Yogacāra scholars would be Nāgārjuna and Āryadeva. Even though the latter's text has the colophon title "The Yoga Practice of Bodhisattvas (bodhisattvayogacārya) composed in Four Hundred Verses," this has nothing to do with the later Yogacāra School of Maitreya, Asanga, and Vasubandhu.
Okay, thanks. Since this is the case, we can assume that Nagarjuna and other classical Madhyamaka teachers would not have required their students to learn and understand Yogacara.

Therefore, since I am looking into learning about classical Madhyamaka, it seems reasonable to also assume that I need not learn Yogacara, as classical Madhyamaka, per it's founder and other authorities and masters, does not require a previous study of Yogacara.
You don't have to learn Yogacāra to study Madhyamaka. However, failing to do so will mean you will automatically be depriving yourself of a significant portion of Mahāyāna thought. But that's up to you.

Dgj
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Re: Is there a pure Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Dgj » Wed Apr 29, 2020 8:03 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 7:55 pm
Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 7:51 pm
Malcolm wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 7:40 pm


No. Yogacāra really emerged only as an independent Mahāyāna school in the fifth and sixth century CE. Thus, the target of Nāgārjuna's critiques were only Abhidharmikas.

Also, there was never a Yogacāra-Madyamaka merger, so to speak.

Both Mādhyamika scholars and Yogācara scholars were working on the basis of the same sets of sūtras; but their understanding and classification of these sūtras differed.

In any case, the pre-Yogacāra scholars would be Nāgārjuna and Āryadeva. Even though the latter's text has the colophon title "The Yoga Practice of Bodhisattvas (bodhisattvayogacārya) composed in Four Hundred Verses," this has nothing to do with the later Yogacāra School of Maitreya, Asanga, and Vasubandhu.
Okay, thanks. Since this is the case, we can assume that Nagarjuna and other classical Madhyamaka teachers would not have required their students to learn and understand Yogacara.

Therefore, since I am looking into learning about classical Madhyamaka, it seems reasonable to also assume that I need not learn Yogacara, as classical Madhyamaka, per it's founder and other authorities and masters, does not require a previous study of Yogacara.
You don't have to learn Yogacāra to study Madhyamaka. However, failing to do so will mean you will automatically be depriving yourself of a significant portion of Mahāyāna thought. But that's up to you.
Makes sense. Thank you.
Malcolm wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 7:55 pm
Also, there was never a Yogacāra-Madyamaka merger, so to speak.
As to the merger, I was referencing things like and the results of things like this:
Śāntarakṣita founded the philosophical approach known as Yogācāra-Mādhyamika (c.q. Yogācāra-Svatantrika-Mādhyamika), which united the Madhyamaka tradition of Nagarjuna, the Yogacara tradition of Asanga, and the logical and epistemological thought of Dharmakirti.

-Wiki page on Santaraksita
That and the fact that there doesn't seem to be any such thing as Madhyamaka independent of Yogacara today, but they used to be separate, even in opposition to one another. So it appears that they have been totally merged.

Perhaps you would use a word other than "merger" to describe this?
Don't assume my words are correct. Do your research.

Malcolm
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Re: Is there a pure Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Apr 29, 2020 8:29 pm

Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 8:03 pm

As to the merger, I was referencing this:
Śāntarakṣita founded the philosophical approach known as Yogācāra-Mādhyamika (c.q. Yogācāra-Svatantrika-Mādhyamika), which united the Madhyamaka tradition of Nagarjuna, the Yogacara tradition of Asanga, and the logical and epistemological thought of Dharmakirti.

-Wiki page on Santaraksita
That and the fact that there doesn't seem to be any such thing as Madhyamaka independent of Yogacara today, but they used to be separate, even in opposition to one another. So it appears that they have been totally merged.

Perhaps you would use a word other than "merger" to describe this?
You should understand that Śāntarakṣita would have been astonished by such classifications. These are Tibetan classifications dating from late 12th century and later.

Śāntarakṣita is termed a "Yogacāra Madhyamaka" by later Tibetans because he adopted the idea of appearances being mind-only (cittamatra), which occurs in several Mahāyāna sūtras.

However, Śāntarakṣita severely critiques the mind-only perspective advanced by the Yogācāra school in texts such as the Tattvasaṃgraha, and so on, as did his disciple, Kamalaśīla in the commentaries the latter wrote on his master's works. \

So, better not to take such labels at face value.

Dgj
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Re: Is there a pure Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Dgj » Wed Apr 29, 2020 8:58 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 8:29 pm
Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 8:03 pm

As to the merger, I was referencing this:
Śāntarakṣita founded the philosophical approach known as Yogācāra-Mādhyamika (c.q. Yogācāra-Svatantrika-Mādhyamika), which united the Madhyamaka tradition of Nagarjuna, the Yogacara tradition of Asanga, and the logical and epistemological thought of Dharmakirti.

-Wiki page on Santaraksita
That and the fact that there doesn't seem to be any such thing as Madhyamaka independent of Yogacara today, but they used to be separate, even in opposition to one another. So it appears that they have been totally merged.

Perhaps you would use a word other than "merger" to describe this?
You should understand that Śāntarakṣita would have been astonished by such classifications. These are Tibetan classifications dating from late 12th century and later.

Śāntarakṣita is termed a "Yogacāra Madhyamaka" by later Tibetans because he adopted the idea of appearances being mind-only (cittamatra), which occurs in several Mahāyāna sūtras.

However, Śāntarakṣita severely critiques the mind-only perspective advanced by the Yogācāra school in texts such as the Tattvasaṃgraha, and so on, as did his disciple, Kamalaśīla in the commentaries the latter wrote on his master's works. \

So, better not to take such labels at face value.
Fair enough. But labels aside, the fact that there is no such thing as an independent Madhyamaka school today, and all are combined in varying degrees with Yogacara, means that the two schools have become merged, no?
Don't assume my words are correct. Do your research.

Malcolm
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Re: Is there a pure Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Apr 29, 2020 9:18 pm

Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 8:58 pm
Fair enough. But labels aside, the fact that there is no such thing as an independent Madhyamaka school today, and all are combined in varying degrees with Yogacara, means that the two schools have become merged, no?
No.

When I studied Madhyamaka in the Sakya school, it was pure Madhyamaka. In general, Yogacāra is held to be a lower tenet system than Madhyamaka in most Tibetan Buddhist schools.

The Sakya, Nyingma, and Gelug schools identify their view as Prasangika Madhyamaka, which is the purest form of Madhyamaka with no Yogacāra at all. This Madhyamaka tradition regards the so-called Yogacāra Sūtras, such as the Lanakāvatara, Samdhinirmocana, etc., to be provisional in meaning, not definitive in meaning.

Some Kagyus and the Jonangpa school follow a kind of "Madhyamaka" in which the doctrines of the Yogacāra school are mixed with the Madhyamaka doctrine of two truths. But this synthesis has been subject to severe criticism for the past 600 years.

Dgj
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Re: Is there a pure Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Dgj » Wed Apr 29, 2020 9:29 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 9:18 pm
Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 8:58 pm
Fair enough. But labels aside, the fact that there is no such thing as an independent Madhyamaka school today, and all are combined in varying degrees with Yogacara, means that the two schools have become merged, no?
No.

When I studied Madhyamaka in the Sakya school, it was pure Madhyamaka. In general, Yogacāra is held to be a lower tenet system than Madhyamaka in most Tibetan Buddhist schools.

The Sakya, Nyingma, and Gelug schools identify their view as Prasangika Madhyamaka, which is the purest form of Madhyamaka with no Yogacāra at all. This Madhyamaka tradition regards the so-called Yogacāra Sūtras, such as the Lanakāvatara, Samdhinirmocana, etc., to be provisional in meaning, not definitive in meaning.

Some Kagyus and the Jonangpa school follow a kind of "Madhyamaka" in which the doctrines of the Yogacāra school are mixed with the Madhyamaka doctrine of two truths. But this synthesis has been subject to severe criticism for the past 600 years.
Huh! Wow I didn't know that. Thanks for informing me! So one might be able to find a teacher or temple that does not teach Yogacara at all? From reading it sounds like the Gelug still teach it, perhaps I'm getting incorrect information?

Do you have any examples of schools, temples or individual teachers that teach classical Madhyamaka and zero Yogacara?
Don't assume my words are correct. Do your research.

Malcolm
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Re: Is there a pure Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Apr 29, 2020 9:35 pm

Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 9:29 pm
Malcolm wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 9:18 pm
Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 8:58 pm
Fair enough. But labels aside, the fact that there is no such thing as an independent Madhyamaka school today, and all are combined in varying degrees with Yogacara, means that the two schools have become merged, no?
No.

When I studied Madhyamaka in the Sakya school, it was pure Madhyamaka. In general, Yogacāra is held to be a lower tenet system than Madhyamaka in most Tibetan Buddhist schools.

The Sakya, Nyingma, and Gelug schools identify their view as Prasangika Madhyamaka, which is the purest form of Madhyamaka with no Yogacāra at all. This Madhyamaka tradition regards the so-called Yogacāra Sūtras, such as the Lanakāvatara, Samdhinirmocana, etc., to be provisional in meaning, not definitive in meaning.

Some Kagyus and the Jonangpa school follow a kind of "Madhyamaka" in which the doctrines of the Yogacāra school are mixed with the Madhyamaka doctrine of two truths. But this synthesis has been subject to severe criticism for the past 600 years.
Huh! Wow I didn't know that. Thanks for informing me! So one might be able to find a teacher or temple that does not teach Yogacara at all? From reading it sounds like the Gelug still teach it, perhaps I'm getting incorrect information?

Do you have any examples of schools, temples or individual teachers that teach classical Madhyamaka and zero Yogacara?
Why do you have such an urge to avoid contact with Yogacāra?

Dgj
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Re: Is there a pure Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Dgj » Wed Apr 29, 2020 10:11 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 9:35 pm
Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 9:29 pm
Malcolm wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 9:18 pm


No.

When I studied Madhyamaka in the Sakya school, it was pure Madhyamaka. In general, Yogacāra is held to be a lower tenet system than Madhyamaka in most Tibetan Buddhist schools.

The Sakya, Nyingma, and Gelug schools identify their view as Prasangika Madhyamaka, which is the purest form of Madhyamaka with no Yogacāra at all. This Madhyamaka tradition regards the so-called Yogacāra Sūtras, such as the Lanakāvatara, Samdhinirmocana, etc., to be provisional in meaning, not definitive in meaning.

Some Kagyus and the Jonangpa school follow a kind of "Madhyamaka" in which the doctrines of the Yogacāra school are mixed with the Madhyamaka doctrine of two truths. But this synthesis has been subject to severe criticism for the past 600 years.
Huh! Wow I didn't know that. Thanks for informing me! So one might be able to find a teacher or temple that does not teach Yogacara at all? From reading it sounds like the Gelug still teach it, perhaps I'm getting incorrect information?

Do you have any examples of schools, temples or individual teachers that teach classical Madhyamaka and zero Yogacara?
Why do you have such an urge to avoid contact with Yogacāra?
Because originally they were not identical schools and I am interested in classical Madhyamaka, not Yogacara, nor a hybrid of the two.

I'm also interested in whether or not a pure Madhyamaka school exists today from a strictly academic perspective.

Malcolm
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Re: Is there a pure Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Malcolm » Wed Apr 29, 2020 11:02 pm

Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 10:11 pm
I'm also interested in whether or not a pure Madhyamaka school exists today from a strictly academic perspective.
In that case, Sakya is your best bet, especially the work of Gorampa.

Dgj
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Re: Is there a pure Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Dgj » Wed Apr 29, 2020 11:03 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 11:02 pm
Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 10:11 pm
I'm also interested in whether or not a pure Madhyamaka school exists today from a strictly academic perspective.
In that case, Sakya is your best bet, especially the work of Gorampa.
Thanks so much I'll look into it!
Don't assume my words are correct. Do your research.

smcj
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Re: Is there a pure classical Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by smcj » Wed Apr 29, 2020 11:23 pm

Gelugpas are not Yogacarins. They teach Madhyamaka as the ultimate view, but as interpreted by Tsognkhapa. The other schools use the Chandrakirti interpretation primarily.
Malcolm trained in Sakya. He's preference understandable.
1.The problem isn’t ‘ignorance’. The problem is the mind you have right now. (H.H. Karmapa XVII @NYC 2/4/18)
2. I support Mingyur R and HHDL in their positions against lama abuse.
3. Student: Lama, I thought I might die but then I realized that the 3 Jewels would protect me.
Lama: Even If you had died the 3 Jewels would still have protected you. (DW post by Fortyeightvows)

Dgj
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Re: Is there a pure classical Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Dgj » Wed Apr 29, 2020 11:38 pm

smcj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 11:23 pm
Gelugpas are not Yogacarins. They teach Madhyamaka as the ultimate view, but as interpreted by Tsognkhapa. The other schools use the Chandrakirti interpretation primarily.
Malcolm trained in Sakya. He's preference understandable.
Thanks. Do you know of any modern author, teacher or specific temple or school of Gelug that, in addition to teaching Madhyamaka, also teaches zero Yogacara?
Don't assume my words are correct. Do your research.

SteRo
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Re: Is there a pure classical Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by SteRo » Thu Apr 30, 2020 5:25 am

The view of 'pure cassical Madhyamaka' might be a view that isn't Madhyamaka at all.

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Anders
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Re: Is there a pure classical Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by Anders » Thu Apr 30, 2020 2:10 pm

On the non Tibetan side of the fence, Yin Shun is probably the most dominant modern figure in the field, though the majority of his work is not translated.

Worth noting also that East Asian madhyamika references some Indian works that never made it to Tibet, most notably the seminal commentary on the prajnaparamita sutra attributed to Nagarjuna, which is basically a tour de force of all aspects of Mahayana Buddhism as seen through a madhyamika lense. Lamotte translated the first 5000 pages or so and there is an English translation of that a bit of googling should be able to turn up
"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: Is there a pure classical Madhyamaka school in existence today?

Post by LastLegend » Thu Apr 30, 2020 6:20 pm

Dgj wrote:
Wed Apr 29, 2020 5:27 pm
I am aware that there are many schools which teach Madhyamaka but as far as I know all of them are combined with Yogacara to varying degrees.

Are there any schools that only teach classical, pre Yogacara synthesis Madhyamaka?

If not, are there any that teach Madhyamaka and other schools combined but do not teach Yogacara?

I am not looking for schools like the Gelug school, for example, which teaches Madhyamaka as the highest teaching but they also teach Yogacara.
With all of these teachings, where would one be without Maha wisdom/prajna?
Make personal vows.

End of the day: I don’t know.

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