Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by anjali » Mon Aug 14, 2017 8:41 am

Vasana wrote:Rehashing an old thread after speaking with some Advaitans and I was wondering if anyone could explain how vāsanās and the arising of thoughts are to be seen from an Advaitan perspective since they've yet to explain.
From Guru Vachaka Kovai, on p.21 David Godman comments,
Vasanas are mental habits or tendencies. The are the desires and aversions that impel one to behave in a particular way. In common with other advaita teachers, Bhagavan taught that one's vasanas not only determine one's behaviour, they actually create and sustain the illusion of the world by taking one's attention away from the Self and onto the external objects that one wants to enjoy or avoid.

These buried or latent habits of the mind withdraw into the Heart at the moment of physical death, but they are not extinguished there. Their unexhausted momentum will cause them to take a new form, a new body, a new incarnation through which they can continue to thrive. Vasanas are therefore the fuel that drives samsara, the continuous cycle of birth and death.
Hopefully, that's helpful?
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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Vasana » Mon Aug 14, 2017 9:39 am

anjali wrote:
Vasana wrote:Rehashing an old thread after speaking with some Advaitans and I was wondering if anyone could explain how vāsanās and the arising of thoughts are to be seen from an Advaitan perspective since they've yet to explain.
From Guru Vachaka Kovai, on p.21 David Godman comments,
Vasanas are mental habits or tendencies. The are the desires and aversions that impel one to behave in a particular way. In common with other advaita teachers, Bhagavan taught that one's vasanas not only determine one's behaviour, they actually create and sustain the illusion of the world by taking one's attention away from the Self and onto the external objects that one wants to enjoy or avoid.

These buried or latent habits of the mind withdraw into the Heart at the moment of physical death, but they are not extinguished there. Their unexhausted momentum will cause them to take a new form, a new body, a new incarnation through which they can continue to thrive. Vasanas are therefore the fuel that drives samsara, the continuous cycle of birth and death.
Hopefully, that's helpful?
Slightly useful but the [neo-ish] Advaitan refutation I encounter is that since awareness is timelessly free, it is not dependent on the limitations of the ego /deluded mind so therefore it makes no difference whether dualistic thoughts occur and whether there is distraction. This is why I wanted to know how it applies to mediation and Equipose in Advaita since it seems contradictory to say all is Jnana when unable to encounter pain as pleasure equally.
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Losal Samten » Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:00 am

Vasana wrote:Slightly useful but the [neo-ish] Advaitan refutation I encounter is that since awareness is timelessly free, it is not dependent on the limitations of the ego /deluded mind so therefore it makes no difference whether dualistic thoughts occur and whether there is distraction.
Which is all well and good for the purusha, but currently we're not the purusha/recognise ourselves as the purusha, we're the prakriti believing we're existent beings. So until we're jivanmuktis with no identification with the prakriti, it's all just blab.

It just sounds like the "everything is emptiness :anjali: :anjali: :anjali: " folks we have in Buddhism, so I wouldn't worry about it.

Ramana quote from another thread:
Q: Is there no dehatma buddhi (l-am-the-body idea) for the jnani? If, for instance, Sri Bhagavan is bitten by an insect, is there no sensation?
A: There is the sensation and there is also the dehatma buddhi. The latter is common to both jnani and ajnani with this difference, that the ajnani thinks only the body is myself, whereas the jnani knows all is of the Self, or all this is Brahman. If there be pain let it be. It is also part of the Self. The Self is poorna (perfect). After transcending dehatma buddhi one becomes a jnani. In the absence of that idea there cannot be either kartritva (doership) or karta (doer). So a jnani has no karma (that is, a jnani performs no actions). That is his experience. Otherwise he is not a jnani. However the ajnani identifies the jnani with his body, which the jnani does not do.

Q: I see you doing things. How can you say that you never perform actions?
A: The radio sings and speaks, but if you open it you will find no one inside. Similarly, my existence is like the space; though this body speaks like the radio, there is no one inside as a doer.
Lacking mindfulness, we commit every wrong. - Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔
ཨོཾ་ཧ་ནུ་པྷ་ཤ་བྷ་ར་ཧེ་ཡེ་སྭཱ་ཧཱ།།
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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Anonymous X » Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:52 am

Vasana wrote:
anjali wrote:
Vasana wrote:Rehashing an old thread after speaking with some Advaitans and I was wondering if anyone could explain how vāsanās and the arising of thoughts are to be seen from an Advaitan perspective since they've yet to explain.
From Guru Vachaka Kovai, on p.21 David Godman comments,
Vasanas are mental habits or tendencies. The are the desires and aversions that impel one to behave in a particular way. In common with other advaita teachers, Bhagavan taught that one's vasanas not only determine one's behaviour, they actually create and sustain the illusion of the world by taking one's attention away from the Self and onto the external objects that one wants to enjoy or avoid.

These buried or latent habits of the mind withdraw into the Heart at the moment of physical death, but they are not extinguished there. Their unexhausted momentum will cause them to take a new form, a new body, a new incarnation through which they can continue to thrive. Vasanas are therefore the fuel that drives samsara, the continuous cycle of birth and death.
Hopefully, that's helpful?
Slightly useful but the [neo-ish] Advaitan refutation I encounter is that since awareness is timelessly free, it is not dependent on the limitations of the ego /deluded mind so therefore it makes no difference whether dualistic thoughts occur and whether there is distraction. This is why I wanted to know how it applies to mediation and Equipose in Advaita since it seems contradictory to say all is Jnana when unable to encounter pain as pleasure equally.
Neo Advaita seems to have settled into an experience of awareness which they claim to be non-dual, similar to vipassana. From there, they spin off into all kinds of tangents depending on the teacher. The clearer advocates like Rupert Spira talk about a knowing presence and an abidance in that. Traditional advaita is more of a dialectic than a path of meditation. Everything is mithya, which accepts the world as conventional truth, while Brahman would be their ultimate truth. Their view of desire is similar to the Buddhist as cause of defilements and rebirth, however, their realization is everything is Brahman, an absolutist view and reject sunyata as being nihilistic. They claim to be contemplatives and using logic and reason to refute views, similar to Madhyamaka. Ramana was about self enquiry and abiding as the Self in equipoise using the question 'who am I?' to take one into the core of your being. I'm being very simplistic here in my descriptions.

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Vasana » Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:16 am

Thanks for the summary Anon. From what i've seen it seems to match what you say about there being different approaches in Advaita. Some are more dialectic and emphasize inference where as other schools elect non-conceptual, direct-congntion as the real means of realization.

It seems that when Buddhists refute the positions of Advaita, we target the inconsistences found in Advaitan dialectic with the 'weapon' of the Catuṣkoṭi - the reasoning of the 4 extremes which Advaita doesn't adhere to...at least in theory. Both Dzogchen and Advaitia have non-cocneptual, valid-cognitions and I'm trying to understand how,where & why these cognitions differ in each system.

I've spoken to Advaitans who speak about Nirvikalpa samādhi. In Buddhsim there is also the closely related nirvikalpa-jñāna.

"Heinrich Zimmer in his book distinguishes Nirvikalpa Samadhi from other states as follows:"

Nirvikalpa samādhi, on the other hand, absorption without self-consciousness, is a mergence of the mental activity (cittavṛtti) in the Self, to such a degree, or in such a way, that the distinction (vikalpa) of knower, act of knowing, and object known becomes dissolved — as waves vanish in water, and as foam vanishes into the sea.

According to Swami Sivananda, it is also called Nirbija Samadhi:

"Without seeds or Samskaras [...] All the seeds or impressions are burnt by the fire of knowledge [...] all the Samskaras and Vasanas which bring on rebirths are totally freed up. All Vrittis or mental modifications that arise from the mind-lake come under restraint. The five afflictions, viz., Avidya (ignorance), Asmita (egoism), Raga-dvesha (love and hatred) and Abhinivesha (clinging to life) are destroyed and the bonds of Karma are annihilated [...] It gives Moksha (deliverance from the wheel of births and deaths). With the advent of the knowledge of the Self, ignorance vanishes. With the disappearance of the root-cause, viz., ignorance, egoism, etc., also disappear."

Edward Conze from 'Buddhist Thought In India' ellaborates on nirvikalpa-jñāna ,

'The "undiscriminate cognition" knows first the unreality of all objects, then realizes that without them also the knowledge itself falls to the ground, and finally directly intuits the supreme reality. Great efforts are made to maintain the paradoxical nature of this gnosis. Though without concepts, judgements and discrimination, it is nevertheless not just mere thoughtlessness. It is neither a cognition nor a non-cognition; its basis is neither thought nor non-thought.... There is here no duality of subject and object. The cognition is not different from that which is cognized, but completely identical with it'

I'm trying to understand the difference between these two states in terms of practice rather than the usual dialect of Brahman being taken as an absolute existent . The extinction of subject and object seems to be common to both traditions as does the burning away of Samskaras/vasanas and mental activity as a result of such samādhi/jñāna. So what is the experiential difference between the jñāna In Advaita that results in the extinguishing of karmic traces and conceptualization and the jñāna in Dzogchen that results in the karmic extinguishing of traces and conceptualization?

Is there still some subtle knowledge-obscuration [jneyavarana] that Advaita's Nirvikalpa Samadhi fails to make obsolete?
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Anonymous X » Wed Aug 16, 2017 11:55 am

Vasana wrote: I'm trying to understand the difference between these two states in terms of practice rather than the usual dialect of Brahman being taken as an absolute existent . The extinction of subject and object seems to be common to both traditions as does the burning away of Samskaras/vasanas and mental activity as a result of such samādhi/jñāna. So what is the experiential difference between the jñāna In Advaita that results in the extinguishing of karmic traces and conceptualization and the jñāna in Dzogchen that results in the karmic extinguishing of traces and conceptualization?

Is there still some subtle knowledge-obscuration [jneyavarana] that Advaita's Nirvikalpa Samadhi fails to make obsolete?
Yes, there must be. Nirvikalpa Samadhi is not a final resting place, so to speak, per Ramana Maharshi and others. It is still an 'experience', formless, as opposed to the natural state that Dzogchen and others speak of. Ramana was a proponent of Sahaj samadhi, this was the final 'resting place' of the life force in the heart. Experientially, the way he described it was also akin to the natural state. Nirvikalpa is a temporary state where the yogi would emerge from. I don't believe you can stay like that. From Nirvikalpa, ajna cakra, down to another centre near the physical heart, Ramana would say was Self Realization. Nirvikalpa is also thought to be a samadhi that was not 'permanent' by the Advaitins. It is more of yogic state which advaita doesn't uphold. The only two Indians in modern times that I'm aware of who have undoubtedly 'entered' the gate of Advaita were Ramana and Nisargadatta Maharaj. Both were very influential on westerners. Nisargadatta is worth checking out as his dialogues with people are not full of the Vedantic rhetoric that is often used by scholars and the rigid academicians of the various Indian schools of dialectics. I would be curious as to how you would view him.
Btw, in conversations with Advaitins, none have ever agreed with anyone other than Sankara and his teacher, Gaudapada. They are the ultimate authority. I guess, similarly in Buddhism, there is vociferous differences in view, path, and fruit. This was what I was drawn away from at a young age by J. Krishnamurti, who could be compared to Nagarjuna in his approach of the two truths in a very non-traditional, non-religious way that seemed much more suitable to modern times, imo. He made sense.

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Malcolm » Wed Aug 16, 2017 3:06 pm

Anonymous X wrote:
Vasana wrote: I'm trying to understand the difference between these two states in terms of practice rather than the usual dialect of Brahman being taken as an absolute existent . The extinction of subject and object seems to be common to both traditions as does the burning away of Samskaras/vasanas and mental activity as a result of such samādhi/jñāna. So what is the experiential difference between the jñāna In Advaita that results in the extinguishing of karmic traces and conceptualization and the jñāna in Dzogchen that results in the karmic extinguishing of traces and conceptualization?

Is there still some subtle knowledge-obscuration [jneyavarana] that Advaita's Nirvikalpa Samadhi fails to make obsolete?
Yes, there must be. Nirvikalpa Samadhi is not a final resting place, so to speak, per Ramana Maharshi and others.
There is no difference between nirvikalpa samadhi and vajropama samadhi apart from the person who is experiencing them: an ordinary afflicted being or someone about enter buddhahood. In the case of the former, such a person has not even scratched the surface of the two obscurations; in the case of the latter, vajropama samadhi eradicates the last vestige of the two obscurations.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Vasana » Wed Aug 16, 2017 4:25 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Anonymous X wrote:
Vasana wrote: I'm trying to understand the difference between these two states in terms of practice rather than the usual dialect of Brahman being taken as an absolute existent . The extinction of subject and object seems to be common to both traditions as does the burning away of Samskaras/vasanas and mental activity as a result of such samādhi/jñāna. So what is the experiential difference between the jñāna In Advaita that results in the extinguishing of karmic traces and conceptualization and the jñāna in Dzogchen that results in the karmic extinguishing of traces and conceptualization?

Is there still some subtle knowledge-obscuration [jneyavarana] that Advaita's Nirvikalpa Samadhi fails to make obsolete?
Yes, there must be. Nirvikalpa Samadhi is not a final resting place, so to speak, per Ramana Maharshi and others.
There is no difference between nirvikalpa samadhi and vajropama samadhi apart from the person who is experiencing them: an ordinary afflicted being or someone about enter buddhahood. In the case of the former, such a person has not even scratched the surface of the two obscurations; in the case of the latter, vajropama samadhi eradicates the last vestige of the two obscurations.
So then by that token, An advaitan developing a stable nirvikalpa samadhi is progressing in the same manner as a Dzogchenpa developing a stable vajropama samadhi ? Don't such samadhi's serve to 'scratch the surface' of the obscurations at least? If so, i'm still not understanding where Advaita and Dzogchen differ experientially beyond dialogue on epistemology and ontology.
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Anonymous X » Wed Aug 16, 2017 4:42 pm

Vasana wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
Anonymous X wrote: Yes, there must be. Nirvikalpa Samadhi is not a final resting place, so to speak, per Ramana Maharshi and others.
There is no difference between nirvikalpa samadhi and vajropama samadhi apart from the person who is experiencing them: an ordinary afflicted being or someone about enter buddhahood. In the case of the former, such a person has not even scratched the surface of the two obscurations; in the case of the latter, vajropama samadhi eradicates the last vestige of the two obscurations.
So then by that token, An advaitan developing a stable nirvikalpa samadhi is progressing in the same manner as a Dzogchenpa developing a stable vajropama samadhi ? Don't such samadhi's serve to 'scratch the surface' of the obscurations at least? If so, i'm still not understanding where Advaita and Dzogchen differ experientially beyond dialogue on epistemology and ontology.
I've never heard of vajropama samadhi so I can't comment on its similarity. Is this a Dzogchen term?
What I said about nirvikalpa holds. In some schools it's thought to be 'the ultimate' samadhi, but not according to Ramana, Nisargadatta, and my own teacher, who was not an Advaitin. There is no stabilization sought as it is a formless samadhi. Sahaj would be what the jnani rests in after the energetic intergrations made after realization. Nirvikalpa is more like an activity of the energetic/nervous system where all forms are suspended from manifesting. It is related to Kundalini. This is why it doesn't continue. It is still experiential. The natural state is not nirvikalpa samadhi.

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Anonymous X » Wed Aug 16, 2017 5:00 pm

Vasana wrote: So then by that token, An advaitan developing a stable nirvikalpa samadhi is progressing in the same manner as a Dzogchenpa developing a stable vajropama samadhi ? Don't such samadhi's serve to 'scratch the surface' of the obscurations at least? If so, i'm still not understanding where Advaita and Dzogchen differ experientially beyond dialogue on epistemology and ontology.
Certainly, the terminology is different in both systems. How can Self-Realization be correlated to the Dzogchen pov? This is the realization of Advaitins along with the realization that the Self is also Brahman, the ultimate truth. Advaitins claim that their realization is not different from certain Buddhist schools. But, within Buddhism, there is certainly differences of explanation and realizations claimed by the different schools.

Perhaps you would have to take up their dialectic and immerse yourself in it to find out if it is at all similar or the same to Dzogchen, experientially. This is no easy task as you might guess. When both claim that their realizations are both non dual, it becomes difficult to refute what one perceives in the other. For me, I cannot accept their dialectic on Brahman and how they construct their view. They do not accept the doctrine of emptiness.

There are probably dozens of books on the subject, but comparing Advaita with Dzogchen epistemology is a tough one. Maybe someone has tackled this issue. :shrug:

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Losal Samten » Wed Aug 16, 2017 5:06 pm

Vasana wrote:
Malcolm wrote:There is no difference between nirvikalpa samadhi and vajropama samadhi apart from the person who is experiencing them: an ordinary afflicted being or someone about enter buddhahood. In the case of the former, such a person has not even scratched the surface of the two obscurations; in the case of the latter, vajropama samadhi eradicates the last vestige of the two obscurations.
So then by that token, An advaitan developing a stable nirvikalpa samadhi is progressing in the same manner as a Dzogchenpa developing a stable vajropama samadhi ? Don't such samadhi's serve to 'scratch the surface' of the obscurations at least? If so, i'm still not understanding where Advaita and Dzogchen differ experientially beyond dialogue on epistemology and ontology.
Few quotes from Malcolm:
Malcolm wrote:It is not the contemplations that are important, it is the view brought to contemplation that makes the difference. For example, there is no actual difference between the Hindu Nirvikalpa samadhi and Vajropama samadhi in terms of its content, but the fact that one is accompanied by insight and the other is not makes the difference between whether it is mundane or liberative.
Malcolm wrote:The only difference between the two, as I already said, is whether it belongs to an ārya or not. In the case of an ārya, it leads to the elimination of afflictions, in the case of a commoner, it does not.
Lacking mindfulness, we commit every wrong. - Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔
ཨོཾ་ཧ་ནུ་པྷ་ཤ་བྷ་ར་ཧེ་ཡེ་སྭཱ་ཧཱ།།
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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Vasana » Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:01 pm

Losal Samten wrote:
Vasana wrote:
Malcolm wrote:There is no difference between nirvikalpa samadhi and vajropama samadhi apart from the person who is experiencing them: an ordinary afflicted being or someone about enter buddhahood. In the case of the former, such a person has not even scratched the surface of the two obscurations; in the case of the latter, vajropama samadhi eradicates the last vestige of the two obscurations.
So then by that token, An advaitan developing a stable nirvikalpa samadhi is progressing in the same manner as a Dzogchenpa developing a stable vajropama samadhi ? Don't such samadhi's serve to 'scratch the surface' of the obscurations at least? If so, i'm still not understanding where Advaita and Dzogchen differ experientially beyond dialogue on epistemology and ontology.
Few quotes from Malcolm:
Malcolm wrote:It is not the contemplations that are important, it is the view brought to contemplation that makes the difference. For example, there is no actual difference between the Hindu Nirvikalpa samadhi and Vajropama samadhi in terms of its content, but the fact that one is accompanied by insight and the other is not makes the difference between whether it is mundane or liberative.
Thanks, Losal Samten. Ok so the quotes do narrow things down a bit but I still have a few questions. How is the view and insight being defined above? I don't think an Advaitan would say that any of these higher tiered samadhi's are 'devoid of insight' in as far as they have their own definition of what insight means.
Is their nonceptual direct-cognition not the same as as the Buddhist valid-cognition in Vajropama by virtue of it possessing non-conceptual clarity but not possessing the seal of emptiness?

Does that make Nirvikalpa samadhi more akin to a higher degree of non-conceptual shamatha then?
Malcolm wrote:The only difference between the two, as I already said, is whether it belongs to an ārya or not. In the case of an ārya, it leads to the elimination of afflictions, in the case of a commoner, it does not.
I'm still not fully understanding this point. Surely if a commoner developed samadhi it would naturally burn away the afflictions in the same way it would for an Arya if the samadhi was exactly the same?
Last edited by Vasana on Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Malcolm » Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:03 pm

Vasana wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
Anonymous X wrote: Yes, there must be. Nirvikalpa Samadhi is not a final resting place, so to speak, per Ramana Maharshi and others.
There is no difference between nirvikalpa samadhi and vajropama samadhi apart from the person who is experiencing them: an ordinary afflicted being or someone about enter buddhahood. In the case of the former, such a person has not even scratched the surface of the two obscurations; in the case of the latter, vajropama samadhi eradicates the last vestige of the two obscurations.
So then by that token, An advaitan developing a stable nirvikalpa samadhi is progressing in the same manner as a Dzogchenpa developing a stable vajropama samadhi ? Don't such samadhi's serve to 'scratch the surface' of the obscurations at least?

Nope. The result of a nonaryan's nirvikalpa samadhi is rebirth in the realm of unconscious devas. Nonbuddhist samadhis merely suppress afflictions, they do not even scratch their surface.

Vajropama samadhi will only come at the end of the path, even if one is a Dzogchen practitioner. In order for Vajropama samadhi to function, one has to be on the verge of buddhahood.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Malcolm » Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:05 pm

Vasana wrote:
I'm still not fully understanding this point. Surely if a commoner developed samadhi it would naturally burn away the afflictions in the same way it would for an Arya if the samadhi was exactly the same?
A commoner is afflicted. An ārya who abides in Vajraopama samadhi is, in Mahāyāna, already on the 10th bhumi. In the Hinayāna, they are on the supermundane path of meditation.

You need to study the samapattis as they are discussed in the Abhidharmakosha, chapter 8.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Vasana » Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:10 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Vasana wrote:
So then by that token, An advaitan developing a stable nirvikalpa samadhi is progressing in the same manner as a Dzogchenpa developing a stable vajropama samadhi ? Don't such samadhi's serve to 'scratch the surface' of the obscurations at least?

Nope. The result of a nonaryan's nirvikalpa samadhi is rebirth in the realm of unconscious devas. Nonbuddhist samadhis merely suppress afflictions, they do not even scratch their surface.

Vajropama samadhi will only come at the end of the path, even if one is a Dzogchen practitioner. In order for Vajropama samadhi to function, one has to be on the verge of buddhahood.
Right, I suspected this would lead to meditation devas. It still doesn't explain some Advaitan's insistence that the realization of a Jivanmukti is synonomous with the erradication of any more karma coming to fruition in the future.

Swami Sivananda on Nirbija Samadhi:

"Without seeds or Samskaras [...] All the seeds or impressions are burnt by the fire of knowledge [...] all the Samskaras and Vasanas which bring on rebirths are totally freed up. All Vrittis or mental modifications that arise from the mind-lake come under restraint. The five afflictions, viz., Avidya (ignorance), Asmita (egoism), Raga-dvesha (love and hatred) and Abhinivesha (clinging to life) are destroyed and the bonds of Karma are annihilated [...] It gives Moksha (deliverance from the wheel of births and deaths). With the advent of the knowledge of the Self, ignorance vanishes. With the disappearance of the root-cause, viz., ignorance, egoism, etc., also disappear."

Is this assertion correct or are they just hanging out in the meditation realms for eons taking it to be full realization?
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Vasana » Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:12 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Vasana wrote:
I'm still not fully understanding this point. Surely if a commoner developed samadhi it would naturally burn away the afflictions in the same way it would for an Arya if the samadhi was exactly the same?
A commoner is afflicted. An ārya who abides in Vajraopama samadhi is, in Mahāyāna, already on the 10th bhumi. In the Hinayāna, they are on the supermundane path of meditation.

You need to study the samapattis as they are discussed in the Abhidharmakosha, chapter 8.
Thanks, I'll look in to it. Most of these are new terms for me so I'm still catching up.
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Malcolm » Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:14 pm

Vasana wrote:
Malcolm wrote:
Vasana wrote:
So then by that token, An advaitan developing a stable nirvikalpa samadhi is progressing in the same manner as a Dzogchenpa developing a stable vajropama samadhi ? Don't such samadhi's serve to 'scratch the surface' of the obscurations at least?

Nope. The result of a nonaryan's nirvikalpa samadhi is rebirth in the realm of unconscious devas. Nonbuddhist samadhis merely suppress afflictions, they do not even scratch their surface.

Vajropama samadhi will only come at the end of the path, even if one is a Dzogchen practitioner. In order for Vajropama samadhi to function, one has to be on the verge of buddhahood.
Right, I suspected this would lead to meditation devas. It still doesn't explain some Advaitan's insistence that the realization of a Jivanmukti is synonomous with the erradication of any more karma coming to fruition in the future.

Swami Sivananda on Nirbija Samadhi:

"Without seeds or Samskaras [...] All the seeds or impressions are burnt by the fire of knowledge [...] all the Samskaras and Vasanas which bring on rebirths are totally freed up. All Vrittis or mental modifications that arise from the mind-lake come under restraint. The five afflictions, viz., Avidya (ignorance), Asmita (egoism), Raga-dvesha (love and hatred) and Abhinivesha (clinging to life) are destroyed and the bonds of Karma are annihilated [...] It gives Moksha (deliverance from the wheel of births and deaths). With the advent of the knowledge of the Self, ignorance vanishes. With the disappearance of the root-cause, viz., ignorance, egoism, etc., also disappear."

Is this assertion correct or are they just hanging out in the meditation realms for eons taking it to be full realization?
This is assertion is not correct since atman is an inherently wrong view. Since their view is wrong, they are mistaken in their meditation, and their conduct and result is also false and samsaric.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Vasana » Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:19 pm

Anonymous X wrote: Perhaps you would have to take up their dialectic and immerse yourself in it to find out if it is at all similar or the same to Dzogchen, experientially. This is no easy task as you might guess. When both claim that their realizations are both non dual, it becomes difficult to refute what one perceives in the other. For me, I cannot accept their dialectic on Brahman and how they construct their view. They do not accept the doctrine of emptiness.

There are probably dozens of books on the subject, but comparing Advaita with Dzogchen epistemology is a tough one. Maybe someone has tackled this issue. :shrug:
This is why I was asking about the experiential side of things - I get that the dialects are not the same but I suppose it may only be possible to determine the validity of the Advaitan path through dialect since we can't yet directly know the realization of another.
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Vasana » Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:26 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Vasana wrote:
Malcolm wrote:

Nope. The result of a nonaryan's nirvikalpa samadhi is rebirth in the realm of unconscious devas. Nonbuddhist samadhis merely suppress afflictions, they do not even scratch their surface.

Vajropama samadhi will only come at the end of the path, even if one is a Dzogchen practitioner. In order for Vajropama samadhi to function, one has to be on the verge of buddhahood.
Right, I suspected this would lead to meditation devas. It still doesn't explain some Advaitan's insistence that the realization of a Jivanmukti is synonomous with the erradication of any more karma coming to fruition in the future.

Swami Sivananda on Nirbija Samadhi:

"Without seeds or Samskaras [...] All the seeds or impressions are burnt by the fire of knowledge [...] all the Samskaras and Vasanas which bring on rebirths are totally freed up. All Vrittis or mental modifications that arise from the mind-lake come under restraint. The five afflictions, viz., Avidya (ignorance), Asmita (egoism), Raga-dvesha (love and hatred) and Abhinivesha (clinging to life) are destroyed and the bonds of Karma are annihilated [...] It gives Moksha (deliverance from the wheel of births and deaths). With the advent of the knowledge of the Self, ignorance vanishes. With the disappearance of the root-cause, viz., ignorance, egoism, etc., also disappear."

Is this assertion correct or are they just hanging out in the meditation realms for eons taking it to be full realization?
This is assertion is not correct since atman is an inherently wrong view. Since their view is wrong, they are mistaken in their meditation, and their conduct and result is also false and samsaric.
Ok. That follows if you already subscribe to Buddhist thought but some Advaitans also say that Atman is false/illusory in the sense that only Brahman is true -i.e there is only Brahman. Atman was never Atman and the thought of atman is subsumed within the realization of being Brahman and so on. Some advaitans even use 'unborn' when describing Brahman which muddies the waters even further. I suppose at this point it circles back to discussion from earlier in the thread in that believing in the final realization of Brahman also constitutes a belief in some kind of transcendental super-self.
I was hoping to avoid epistemology and ontology and focus on meditation alone but I suppose it's impossible to speak about them when the meditation follows the view.
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Re: Non-Duality in Dzogchen vs Advaita Vedanta

Post by Malcolm » Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:44 pm

Vasana wrote:
Ok. That follows if you already subscribe to Buddhist thought but some Advaitans also say that Atman is false/illusory in the sense that only Brahman is true -i.e there is only Brahman. Atman was never Atman and the thought of atman is subsumed within the realization of being Brahman and so on. Some advaitans even use 'unborn' when describing Brahman which muddies the waters even further. I suppose at this point it circles back to discussion from earlier in the thread in that believing in the final realization of Brahman also constitutes a belief in some kind of transcendental super-self.
It constitutes belief in an ultimate, all pervading, truly existing essence. To say brahman is unborn is to say it is eternal.

Vasana wrote:
I was hoping to avoid epistemology and ontology and focus on meditation alone but I suppose it's impossible to speak about them when the meditation follows the view.
Meditation follows view. If your view is wrong, your meditation will be wrong.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

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