Awareness of awareness

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Rick
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Rick » Sun Nov 16, 2014 8:31 pm

So could one say that awareness is in the mind of the awarer?

I.e. that two people who have experienced deep awareness might describe awareness in nontrivially different ways?

I.e. that "awareness" is a pointer to a direct experience which can never be summed up in a tidy package (with a golden bow)? And that this is what I'm trying to do: sum/tidy it up ... as if I could GET it via words/thought/contemplation?
Last edited by Rick on Sun Nov 16, 2014 8:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Jesse
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Jesse » Sun Nov 16, 2014 8:31 pm

 
We are searching for the real truth, what is really there.
Te he hee he
The cost of a thing is the amount of what I call life which is required to be exchanged for it, immediately or in the long run.
-Henry David Thoreau

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Paul
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Paul » Sun Nov 16, 2014 8:40 pm

rachmiel wrote:So could one say that awareness is in the mind of the awarer?
Awareness, in the common meaning of the term is just the knowing aspect of the mind, contaminated by the grasping of 'I' and 'other'. Usually in the form I am aware of that'. Recognising the empty nature of all of this lets it be naturally freed. It is two sides of the same hand, as Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche used to say. It is not as if there is another mind that pops up when recognising the nature of mind and takes over. There isn't some special object to find in the mind that has to be held onto, although the language of 'discovering' something might make is sound a bit like that.
I.e. that two people who have experienced deep awareness might describe awareness in nontrivially different ways?

I.e. that "awareness" is a pointer to a direct experience which can never be summed up in a tidy package (with a golden bow)? And that this is what I'm trying to do: sum/tidy it up ... as if I could GET it via words/thought/contemplation?
It is famously completely impossible to describe fully in words - "like a mute tasting sugar" - but techniques can be taught for a student to experience it. The descriptions given can sometimes seem contradictory to one another, but describe the same thing.
Look at the unfathomable spinelessness of man: all the means he's been given to stay alert he uses, in the end, to ornament his sleep. – Rene Daumal
the modern mind has become so limited and single-visioned that it has lost touch with normal perception - John Michell

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Rick
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Rick » Sun Nov 16, 2014 8:47 pm

Useful again, thanks!
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dzogchungpa
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by dzogchungpa » Sun Nov 16, 2014 10:55 pm

rachmiel wrote:From what I've read and heard, the core activity of Dogzen is becoming directly aware of awareness.

But this doesn't make sense to me...
Maybe this will help:
http://www.sandoth.com/DZEN/Naked%20Awareness3.pdf ;)
Last edited by dzogchungpa on Sun Nov 16, 2014 11:05 pm, edited 2 times in total.
There is not only nothingness because there is always, and always can manifest. - Thinley Norbu Rinpoche

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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Lotus_Bitch » Sun Nov 16, 2014 11:03 pm

Paul wrote:
rachmiel wrote:
Paul wrote: Conventional awareness does act like that - actively knows objects. The nature of mind is inseparably clear and empty. The natural state is not actively knowing another object, it is knowing its own empty nature. It is self-illuminated, so doesn't need to actively be aware of itself in the verb meaning of the term. It is naturally being what it already is, not a subject holding another object. When the mind does go around holding objects (in the active, verb type way) it has bifurcated into subject and object and so is in the confused state and conditioned.
That's helpful. To know that the awareness being spoken of in Dzogchen is not conventional awareness.
In both the natural state and the conventional samsaric state there is always a knowing of what is going on. You can't get rid of this knowing as it's part of you. The difference is does whether or not the clear aspect knows its own nature as being empty - if it is not in a state of directly experiencing this it will get busy grasping at things and creating an 'I' or 'other' out of everything it comes across. This 'I' and 'other' then provides the framework for accepting and rejecting and therefore suffering.
To know one's own empty nature is (I think) to know -- be aware of -- a subtle object: that one's nature is empty.
In the natural state the mind isn't taking itself as a self, so it's not positing objects. That subject looking at an object framework isn't there. Kind of like an understanding without an understander.
:thumbsup:

The inseparable clarity and emptiness of Dzogchen can be summarized as meaning: you cannot rid yourself of this clarity nor can this clarity be found.

:namaste:
Many meditators know how to meditate,
But only a few know how to dismantle [mental clinging].
- Je Gyare

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Rick
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Rick » Sun Nov 16, 2014 11:49 pm

Lotus_Bitch wrote:You cannot rid yourself of this clarity nor can this clarity be found.
Buddhism sure does come up with some good T-shirt slogans! :cheers:
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lorem
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by lorem » Sun Nov 16, 2014 11:57 pm

rachmiel wrote:
Lotus_Bitch wrote:You cannot rid yourself of this clarity nor can this clarity be found.
Buddhism sure does come up with some good T-shirt slogans! :cheers:
lol, yeah, "Better me than you"
I should be meditating.

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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Gyurme Kundrol » Mon Nov 17, 2014 9:41 pm

rachmiel wrote:So could one say that awareness is in the mind of the awarer?
My understanding is that mind is contained within awareness. Awareness is not a state of mind. Mind can be altered and manipulated in literally innumerable ways, but awareness is immutable and unchanging. Mind is basically the power of awareness manifesting as anything and everything, whereas awareness is the pure, open, non-conceptual space within which this power arises and moves. I also have heard that even the mind of a Buddha is impermanent, even if it may be long lasting and very durable.

Consider the mirror analogy. Awareness is like a mirror. It has this latent potential to reflect literally anything. A mirror doesnt discriminate, judge, alter, or interact with a reflection in any way. Whatever phenomena arises within ones awareness, whatever appearances of the six sense organs arise, all of that is simply a radiant display of awareness. You dont have to do anything to make it appear and you dont have to do anything to maintain that appearance. In the same way a mirror does nothing, but reflects everything perfectly. Also, the reflections that appear never alter the mirror itself. The ugliest and most evil, the most beautiful and amazing- both leave the mirror equally untouched, unscatched, unaffected, unchanged. Awareness is like this, so that any experience of Samsara or Nirvana simply arises as the one taste.

Furthemore appearances are unimpeded. Their motion unhindered. The activity unceasing. Its a continuum of appearances. Resting evenly in pure awareness while this continuum arises basically constitutes Dzogchen practice. When we grasp onto an appearance and make it into a mental object that we then apprehend with hope and fear, with calculation or contrivance, then we experience suffering, delusion, ignorance and Samsara. Its ending this habitual activity of grasping onto whatever appears in our six senses that is the goal of Dzogchen. The goal however is not to end all activity, just the habit of grasping. Intentionally ending all motion constitutes falling into meditations that will result in rebirth in formless realms as one is forcefully entering a still, non-conceptual state. Concepts themselves even do not obscure the true nature, but when they arise without the attendant recognition and confidence of the Dzogchen view then they are afflictions, but if they arise with that recognition and confidence then its a display of wisdom and awareness's own radiant potential manifesting for the benefit of all sentient beings.

This is why mind cannot "comprehend" awareness using its own devices, and why Dzogchen cant be intellectually understood. Mind is basically a really powerful tool. Its like a reflection trying to grasp the mirror, or a cloud trying to contain the sky. In both cases, all that happens is that the reflection grasps itself- the relative mind chases itself in circles, wearing itself down. This can be good because when you wear yourself down, you might give up that habitual apprehension, and that can create a space within which recognition can dawn. A cloud trying to grasp the sky just makes itself bigger and bigger, bloating itself. As a person this is us bloating the pure view of Dzogchen into a massive heap of intellectual traps and views, all our efforts are in vain because a cloud can never contain the limitless sky.

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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Rroman » Tue Nov 18, 2014 3:11 am

Ah

I believe this is another reason to have a teacher. To fully understand these words you need to have been shown something at least from a teacher. Unless of course, all you want to do is read and understand on a mundane level. But to fully incorporate this in daily life, or anyway, books might be a slight problem since it will cloud one of pre concepts before actually receiving teachings. Of course we all read, which is one of the ways we have turned towards these teachings. But after receiving a little of teaching and the actually practicing them. I would say that it might have been better have a clear mind rather then a mind full of concepts of rigpa.
If one doesn't understand these teachings, it ok. That's called merit. As well as not having a teacher or wanting to to search for one. Merit and karma are playing a bigger role then we know

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Rick
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Rick » Tue Nov 18, 2014 6:08 am

Gyurme Kundrol wrote:
rachmiel wrote:So could one say that awareness is in the mind of the awarer?
My understanding is that mind is contained within awareness. Awareness is not a state of mind. Mind can be altered and manipulated in literally innumerable ways, but awareness is immutable and unchanging. Mind is basically the power of awareness manifesting as anything and everything, whereas awareness is the pure, open, non-conceptual space within which this power arises and moves.
But this is all subjective, right? It cannot be proven, reasoned out ... it can only be experienced by an individual.

Subjective experience is notoriously unreliable. If I were in a fundamentalist Christian community, I might have an utterly convincing subjective experience of knowing that Jesus is the son of God.

Is there a fundamental difference between knowing this and knowing that awareness is the pure space that contains mind? Or is it just a question of: Choose which revelation you'd like to receive, then work your way to receiving it?
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by LastLegend » Tue Nov 18, 2014 7:21 am

rachmiel wrote:
Is there a fundamental difference between knowing this and knowing that awareness is the pure space that contains mind? Or is it just a question of: Choose which revelation you'd like to receive, then work your way to receiving it?
Awareness is not even the space. "Space" is just a good way to describe it because you cannot pin point it.

As I understand it, when you sit not chasing your mind and not give rise to thought when you see form, that is your awareness. It might not be what Dzogchen people refer to. I might be wrong. So don't beat me up people. :mrgreen:
NAMO AMITABHA
NAM MO A DI DA PHAT (VIETNAMESE)
NAMO AMITUOFO (CHINESE)

Bodhidharma [my translation]
―I come to the East to transmit this clear knowing mind without constructing any dharma―

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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Matt J » Tue Nov 18, 2014 3:03 pm

ALL experience is subjective. Logic, reason, science, objectivity all occur within experience, that is to say, subjectively. The idea of an objective world, that is, a world outside of experience, is just a concept, which also occurs subjectively. No one can step outside of experience to see if experience matches some objective reality.

However, you can discover the truth of dharma WITHIN your experience. You can look at everything that comes and goes and see that everything comes and goes. Nothing endures. There is nothing ultimately finable under analysis. It's all squishy, i.e. empty.
rachmiel wrote: But this is all subjective, right? It cannot be proven, reasoned out ... it can only be experienced by an individual.

Subjective experience is notoriously unreliable. If I were in a fundamentalist Christian community, I might have an utterly convincing subjective experience of knowing that Jesus is the son of God.
"The essence of meditation practice is to let go of all your expectations about meditation. All the qualities of your natural mind -- peace, openness, relaxation, and clarity -- are present in your mind just as it is. You don't have to do anything different. You don't have to shift or change your awareness. All you have to do while observing your mind is to recognize the qualities it already has."
--- Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche

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Rick
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Rick » Tue Nov 18, 2014 4:12 pm

Matt J wrote:ALL experience is subjective. Logic, reason, science, objectivity all occur within experience, that is to say, subjectively. The idea of an objective world, that is, a world outside of experience, is just a concept, which also occurs subjectively. No one can step outside of experience to see if experience matches some objective reality.
If you're right, then everything anyone -- including the Buddha -- asserts or believes to be true is purely subjective. And since no subjective view is more (or less) objectively correct than any other subjective view ... why favor one over another? Why take one to be "the true view" if all we're really doing is sharing stories around the campfire?
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Sönam » Tue Nov 18, 2014 5:13 pm

rachmiel wrote:
Matt J wrote:ALL experience is subjective. Logic, reason, science, objectivity all occur within experience, that is to say, subjectively. The idea of an objective world, that is, a world outside of experience, is just a concept, which also occurs subjectively. No one can step outside of experience to see if experience matches some objective reality.
If you're right, then everything anyone -- including the Buddha -- asserts or believes to be true is purely subjective. And since no subjective view is more (or less) objectively correct than any other subjective view ... why favor one over another? Why take one to be "the true view" if all we're really doing is sharing stories around the campfire?
one view or (thinking) no view, it's always a view ... therefore, in the mean time, you better take a view that fit the best with your (futur) landing into no view.

Sönam
By understanding everything you perceive from the perspective of the view, you are freed from the constraints of philosophical beliefs.
By understanding that any and all mental activity is meditation, you are freed from arbitrary divisions between formal sessions and postmeditation activity.
- Longchen Rabjam -

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Rick
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Rick » Tue Nov 18, 2014 5:46 pm

Sönam wrote:
rachmiel wrote:And since no subjective view is more (or less) objectively correct than any other subjective view ... why favor one over another? Why take one to be "the true view" if all we're really doing is sharing stories around the campfire?
one view or (thinking) no view, it's always a view ... therefore, in the mean time, you better take a view that fit the best with your (futur) landing into no view.
But, as you said, "future landing into no view" is a view. It's a storyline: "I shall one day become enlightened." By taking this view, you are creating and living out a story, rather than resting in story-free being.
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Tue Nov 18, 2014 5:56 pm

rachmiel wrote:
Sönam wrote:
rachmiel wrote:And since no subjective view is more (or less) objectively correct than any other subjective view ... why favor one over another? Why take one to be "the true view" if all we're really doing is sharing stories around the campfire?
one view or (thinking) no view, it's always a view ... therefore, in the mean time, you better take a view that fit the best with your (futur) landing into no view.
But, as you said, "future landing into no view" is a view. It's a storyline: "I shall one day become enlightened." By taking this view, you are creating and living out a story, rather than resting in story-free being.
Obviously any flavor of Buddhadharma is a vehicle and not an ends of and within itself..not exactly anything controversial there. Sure it's all abstractions once the talk begins, but some abstractions lead beyond abstraction..as it were. Also the "story" is not the opposite of the "real thing", seeing discursive thoughts and concepts as an enemy to be overcome seems to be an obscuration of it's own.
"it must be coming from the mouthy mastermind of raunchy rapper, Johnny Dangerous”

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Matt J
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Matt J » Tue Nov 18, 2014 6:20 pm

All views may be limited or lies, but if so, then Buddha's lies are helpful lies. There is a story in the Lotus Sutra about a rich man who's kids are so engrossed in playing that they don't notice the house is on fire. No matter how much he yells, they ignore him. So the rich man tells them each there is a carriage outside drawn by a different animal: one is drawn by a deer, another by an elephant, so so on. The kids get so excited they run out of the house. Even a lie can be useful. But what works for one person doesn't work for another, which is why there are so many dharma teachings.

The reason I follow the Buddha's teaching is simple: it holds up for me. When I first started seriously practicing, I was skeptical about the idea of everything being impermanent. So what did I do? I sat down and looked. I looked at thoughts, I looked at physical objects, I looked here and there. Sure enough, everything is impermanent. I didn't believe it because the Buddha said it. I practiced and found it to be so for myself. I don't believe, I know. And overall, it ups my level of trust in the Buddha.

IF everything is subjective: well, is it or isn't it? That is what we need to find out. If everything is subjective, then we can complain all we want. It won't change a thing.
rachmiel wrote: If you're right, then everything anyone -- including the Buddha -- asserts or believes to be true is purely subjective. And since no subjective view is more (or less) objectively correct than any other subjective view ... why favor one over another? Why take one to be "the true view" if all we're really doing is sharing stories around the campfire?
"The essence of meditation practice is to let go of all your expectations about meditation. All the qualities of your natural mind -- peace, openness, relaxation, and clarity -- are present in your mind just as it is. You don't have to do anything different. You don't have to shift or change your awareness. All you have to do while observing your mind is to recognize the qualities it already has."
--- Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche

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Rick
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Rick » Tue Nov 18, 2014 6:47 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:Also the "story" is not the opposite of the "real thing", seeing discursive thoughts and concepts as an enemy to be overcome seems to be an obscuration of it's own.
Not an enemy to be overcome, rather a trickster to remain wary of.
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Rick
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Re: Awareness of awareness

Post by Rick » Tue Nov 18, 2014 6:52 pm

Matt J wrote:IF everything is subjective: well, is it or isn't it? That is what we need to find out.
Sound like an impossible task it does.

No one can ever be utterly certain that they are, or aren't, dreaming up this whole big beautiful heartbreaking show, right?
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