What possible reason could there be to study or practice Buddhism if arising and ceasing do not occur?

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.
User avatar
LastLegend
Posts: 4320
Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 3:46 pm
Location: Northern Virginia

Re: What possible reason could there be to study or practice Buddhism if arising and ceasing do not occur?

Post by LastLegend » Sun May 10, 2020 4:49 pm

Dgj wrote:
Sun May 10, 2020 3:52 pm
Astus wrote:
Fri May 08, 2020 3:27 pm
Dgj wrote:
Thu May 07, 2020 3:27 pm
Arising, duration and cessation of ultimate entities as incorrectly posited by the Sarvastivadins does not occur.
"Just as cessation is imputed
On the disintegration of an arisen entity;
So too the sublime ones accept
Cessation that is illusion-like."

(Sixyt Stanzas of Reasoning, v 7)
Hmmm. "Cessation that is illusion-like".

Typically things are either illusions, or not. Illusion-like would usually be applied to something that seems like an illusion, but isn't. If it were an illusion, it would just be called an illusion.

So the sublime ones accept cessation that actually is, but is like an illusion?

Further, the very phrase is stating that entities do disintegrate. So it seems fair to say that Nagarjuna held that entities disintegrate, at the very least?

From there, that he held that this disintegration can be called "illusion-like" cessation?
If suggesting illusion, then proposing there is something real on the other end. The sublime is our Wisdom that is unborn undead, empty like space (as often described), not a thing itself. Maha Prajna paramita Sutras call it non-appearance, but what distinguishes appearance from non-appearance is consciousness which immediately manifests when there are conditions present. It’s like raising your hand, what’s behind it?
Make personal vows.

End of the day: I don’t know.

User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
Posts: 7794
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: What possible reason could there be to study or practice Buddhism if arising and ceasing do not occur?

Post by Astus » Sun May 10, 2020 9:02 pm

Dgj wrote:
Sun May 10, 2020 3:52 pm
Typically things are either illusions, or not. Illusion-like would usually be applied to something that seems like an illusion, but isn't. If it were an illusion, it would just be called an illusion.
"All phenomena arise in dependence. There is no phenomenon that can remain constantly. All phenomena arise from circumstances. There is no phenomenon that arises without circumstances. Any phenomenon that arises in dependence is unborn. Therefore all phenomena are unborn. To realize that all phenomena are unborn is to know how to practice the bodhisattva’s path. In this way, one attains the basis for benefiting all beings and can proceed with a compassionate outlook. With such conviction, one comes to understand that all phenomena are illusory. All phenomena are magically manifest because they are imputed. Those imputations are also utterly empty. The realization that all phenomena are empty is the attainment of the illusory absorption."
(The Illusory Absorption 1.7)

The eight similes of illusion:
"As in a dream, all the external objects perceived with the five senses are not there, but appear through delusion.
As in a magic show, things are made to appear by a temporary conjunction of causes, circumstances and connections.
As in a visual aberration, things appear to be there, yet there is nothing.
As in a mirage, things appear but are not real.
As in an echo, things can be perceived but there is nothing there, either outside or inside.
As in a city of gandharvas, there is neither a dwelling nor anyone to dwell.
As in a reflection, things appear but have no reality of their own.
As in a city created by magic, there are all sorts of appearances but they are not really there."

(The Words of My Perfect Teacher, 2.6.3, p 252)
So the sublime ones accept cessation that actually is, but is like an illusion?
Not actually, but apparently. It seems that things come and go, rise and fall. But if one looks into it, one investigates it, there are no things, nor change.
Further, the very phrase is stating that entities do disintegrate. So it seems fair to say that Nagarjuna held that entities disintegrate, at the very least? From there, that he held that this disintegration can be called "illusion-like" cessation?
"Those who imputes arising and disintegration
With relation to conditioned things,
They do not understand well the movement
Of the wheel of dependent origination."

(Sixyt Stanzas of Reasoning, v 18)
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"

User avatar
LastLegend
Posts: 4320
Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 3:46 pm
Location: Northern Virginia

Re: What possible reason could there be to study or practice Buddhism if arising and ceasing do not occur?

Post by LastLegend » Sun May 10, 2020 10:51 pm

It’s a mirage but not imagining an alternative truth. Mirage just as suffering and karma these things do manifest through experience. The issue here is people argue since it’s an illusion, what’s the point of helping sentient beings as ancient Bodhisattvas do? Well because they still suffer.

Knowledge of illusion/dependence is knowledge of Dharma, but there is limitation to this knowledge. What being proposed is a selected few of Dharma methods should be used.
Make personal vows.

End of the day: I don’t know.

User avatar
Wayfarer
Former staff member
Posts: 5146
Joined: Sun May 27, 2012 8:31 am
Location: AU

Re: What possible reason could there be to study or practice Buddhism if arising and ceasing do not occur?

Post by Wayfarer » Mon May 11, 2020 3:18 am

Astus wrote: But if one looks into it, one investigates it, there are no things, nor change.
This 'looking into' is not a simple nor a casual matter. I think it means, 'seeing beyond the apparent flux and change', but that 'seeing beyond' is itself the fulfillment of the path, isn't it? If one casually says, 'well nothing really exists' without having actually attained that stage of insight, then that easily becomes nihilism. I think there's a change in perspective that accompanies enlightenment, and if we can't see from that perspective, then it's pointless to speak as if we do, or even really try to fathom what it means.
'Only practice with no gaining idea' ~ Suzuki Roshi

User avatar
Astus
Former staff member
Posts: 7794
Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:22 pm
Location: Budapest

Re: What possible reason could there be to study or practice Buddhism if arising and ceasing do not occur?

Post by Astus » Mon May 11, 2020 8:17 am

Wayfarer wrote:
Mon May 11, 2020 3:18 am
This 'looking into' is not a simple nor a casual matter.
That is what wisdom is for that is developed through learning, reflection, and cultivation.

"Having ascertained through scripture
And through reasoning that phenomena
Are not produced nor inherently existent,
Meditate without conceptuality."

(Illuminating the Path to Enlightenment, v 58, p 158)
I think it means, 'seeing beyond the apparent flux and change', but that 'seeing beyond' is itself the fulfillment of the path, isn't it?
It is not a matter of seeing beyond, but rather seeing things as they are.

"The absence of an [inherently-existent] nature owing to [being reducible to mere] causes and conditions is itself their true character."
(The Essentials of Buddhist Meditation, ch 6)

Also, it's not the end of the path, but rather the beginning of cultivation with an ascertained correct view.

"Having thus meditated on suchness,
Eventually, after reaching “heat” and so forth,
The “very joyful” and the others are attained
And, before long, the enlightened state of buddhahood."

(Illuminating the Path to Enlightenment, v 59, p 158)
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"

Crazywisdom
Posts: 2159
Joined: Fri May 23, 2014 5:48 pm

Re: What possible reason could there be to study or practice Buddhism if arising and ceasing do not occur?

Post by Crazywisdom » Mon May 11, 2020 1:53 pm

Dgj wrote:
Mon May 04, 2020 12:43 am
If no arising nor ceasing occur then the twelve links are meaningless, reduced to nonsense.
With ignorance as condition, volitional formations come to be...

with the cessation of birth, aging-and-death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, displeasure, and despair cease. Such is the cessation of this whole mass of suffering.
Ditto for the four truths.
The noble truth of suffering,
the noble truth of the arising of suffering,
the noble truth of the cessation of suffering,
the noble truth of the path leading to the cessation of suffering

Dependent origination must be flatly incorrect: it states arising and cessation do occur.

Ditto for the four truths.

So, if the core goals and functioning of Buddhism are nonsense, why not just forget the whole thing?

I think Buddhism is extremely important and should be practiced! I'm just looking for clarification.
The idea is not recognizing emptiness of all dharmas is the cause of I and mine which is how all suffering begins.

User avatar
LastLegend
Posts: 4320
Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 3:46 pm
Location: Northern Virginia

Re: What possible reason could there be to study or practice Buddhism if arising and ceasing do not occur?

Post by LastLegend » Mon May 11, 2020 4:09 pm

Astus wrote:
Mon May 11, 2020 8:17 am

That is what wisdom is for that is developed through learning, reflection, and cultivation.
This type of wisdom is initial and has its limitations because it’s learned from consciousness (the very ignorance) that needs to transcend. Once consciousness is transcended, then unborn Wisdom/Mahaprajna will reveal itself completely. But one must know a method to recollect past life. There is a reason why Diamond Sutra says even Buddhadharma needs to be abandoned (now to clarify this refers to initial learning Dharma), but once transcended consciousness there is a different level of Dharma that’s practiced (transforming a storm for example), and here it’s operated by unborn wisdom.
It is not a matter of seeing beyond, but rather seeing things as they are.
What often happens is we are heavily karmic at all levels including subtlety which is often followed by consciousness. Like duality that’s a product of consciousness.
Make personal vows.

End of the day: I don’t know.

User avatar
LastLegend
Posts: 4320
Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 3:46 pm
Location: Northern Virginia

Re: What possible reason could there be to study or practice Buddhism if arising and ceasing do not occur?

Post by LastLegend » Tue May 12, 2020 3:23 pm

Self is dependence of Skandhas. Upon investigation, Skandhas are empty and consciousness being a Skandha that tells a difference between us and another person.
Make personal vows.

End of the day: I don’t know.

User avatar
Grigoris
Former staff member
Posts: 21252
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

Re: What possible reason could there be to study or practice Buddhism if arising and ceasing do not occur?

Post by Grigoris » Tue May 12, 2020 3:53 pm

"View of individuality satkayadrsti - It is the admission, inclination, idea, point of view, opinion of him who considers the five aggregates of attachment as a "self" or pertaining to a "self". It's function consists of giving a basis to all kinds of opinions."

Asanga Abhidharmasamuccaya p12
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

User avatar
LastLegend
Posts: 4320
Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 3:46 pm
Location: Northern Virginia

Re: What possible reason could there be to study or practice Buddhism if arising and ceasing do not occur?

Post by LastLegend » Tue May 12, 2020 4:17 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Tue May 12, 2020 3:53 pm
"View of individuality satkayadrsti - It is the admission, inclination, idea, point of view, opinion of him who considers the five aggregates of attachment as a "self" or pertaining to a "self". It's function consists of giving a basis to all kinds of opinions."

Asanga Abhidharmasamuccaya p12
Haha so aggregates are empty of self. I can live with that.
Make personal vows.

End of the day: I don’t know.

confusedlayman
Posts: 60
Joined: Sat Jun 01, 2019 12:28 am

Re: What possible reason could there be to study or practice Buddhism if arising and ceasing do not occur?

Post by confusedlayman » Tue May 26, 2020 11:55 am

Dgj wrote:
Mon May 04, 2020 12:43 am
If no arising nor ceasing occur then the twelve links are meaningless, reduced to nonsense.
With ignorance as condition, volitional formations come to be...

with the cessation of birth, aging-and-death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, displeasure, and despair cease. Such is the cessation of this whole mass of suffering.
Ditto for the four truths.
The noble truth of suffering,
the noble truth of the arising of suffering,
the noble truth of the cessation of suffering,
the noble truth of the path leading to the cessation of suffering

Dependent origination must be flatly incorrect: it states arising and cessation do occur.

Ditto for the four truths.

So, if the core goals and functioning of Buddhism are nonsense, why not just forget the whole thing?

I think Buddhism is extremely important and should be practiced! I'm just looking for clarification.
arising and ceasing occurs normally as apperance and disappearance of conciousness on gross level. but if u investifate further, there is nothing to arise and cease, just phenomena rolls on which appears to conciousness in certain way that we talk about ariing and passing in conventional term.

Post Reply

Return to “Mahāyāna Buddhism”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Astus, Kim O'Hara and 46 guests