From Impermanence to Buddhahood

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Astus
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From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by Astus » Thu Mar 23, 2017 12:05 pm

Impermanence is the gateway to emptiness.
Emptiness is the gateway to non-birth.
Non-birth is the gateway to Buddhahood.


"What is the Buddha’s path? It is the bodhi-mind, the mind of Nirvana. To walk on the Buddha’s path is to follow the path of the Great Enlightened One, the one who attained the Great Nirvana, the one who has reached ultimate liberation. Through great enlightenment, one sees all phenomena with pure luminosity. From the perspective of departing from all defilements, the Buddha saw the ultimate truth: the non-arising and non-ceasing of all phenomena. Through complete cessation, he achieved total peace of mind. This complete cessation does not mean that everything is extinguished. It is the cessation of all defilements and habitual tendencies. After achieving cessation, an Enlightened One begins a new life, a life of selfless service to benefit sentient beings.
As practitioners, we must understand impermanence. Impermanence is the gateway to emptiness.
Thus to understand emptiness, we must start with an understanding of impermanence. Emptiness, in turn, is the gateway to non-birth. By understanding emptiness, you will not be attached to life. In other words, you will transcend the two extremes and all dualities. In this way, you will be able to enter non-birth. Non-birth is the gateway to Buddhahood. Understanding non-birth, one will no longer be attached to life, one will no longer be afflicted by the miseries of life. One can learn and practice the Dharma in the cycle of birth and death and enter the path to Buddhahood."


(Jen-chun: Great Bodhi Mind, p 53-54)
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"

White Lotus
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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by White Lotus » Wed Mar 29, 2017 4:20 pm

Astus, how do you understand and experience impermanence and how does this lead to emptiness? :anjali:
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.

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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by Vasana » Wed Mar 29, 2017 4:39 pm

White Lotus wrote:Astus, how do you understand and experience impermanence and how does this lead to emptiness? :anjali:
If phenomena were not impermanent, they could not be empty. If compounded phenomena & noumena were not compounded and co-dependently arisen, there would be no way for them to cease, disintegrate or come apart. If a flower wasn't empty, there would be no conditions for it's spatial and temporal sprouting or decay. By seeing the temporal nature of appearances, you begin to see how that relates to the empty nature of appearances.

"Whatever is born is impermanent and is bound to die.
Whatever is stored up is impermanent and is bound to run out.
Whatever comes together is impermanent and is bound to come apart.
Whatever is built is impermanent and is bound to collapse.
Whatever rises up is impermanent and is bound to fall down.
So also, friendship and enmity, fortune and sorrow, good and evil, all the thoughts that run through your mind – everything is always changing."


Patrul Rinpoche
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by Anonymous X » Wed Mar 29, 2017 5:10 pm

White Lotus wrote:Astus, how do you understand and experience impermanence and how does this lead to emptiness? :anjali:
Impermanence.......the transient nature of all phenomenon, neither existing nor non-existing. Emptiness......devoid of a self. No-self, no birth or death. No birth or death, omniscience.

Of course, this is an oversimplification of the subject, but that's what happens when we try to describe a gateless gate..........

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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by White Lotus » Thu Mar 30, 2017 5:33 pm

I can see emptiness leading to impermanence, but seeing impermanence leading to emptiness is unatural. Surely sunyatta emptiness is not a product of impermanence? It is more likely to be the product or field emanating from 1 if anything. Like gravity surrounding density. Or protoplasm and neucleus of a cell. The speck in the dharma eye.
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.

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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by Bristollad » Thu Mar 30, 2017 8:53 pm

White Lotus wrote:I can see emptiness leading to impermanence, but seeing impermanence leading to emptiness is unatural. Surely sunyatta emptiness is not a product of impermanence? It is more likely to be the product or field emanating from 1 if anything. Like gravity surrounding density. Or protoplasm and neucleus of a cell. The speck in the dharma eye.
Perhaps Astus' quote could be understood to mean:

"[the understanding of] impermanence is the gateway to [the understanding of] emptiness

but seeing impermanence leading to emptiness is unatural
In what sense unnatural?

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Astus
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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by Astus » Fri Mar 31, 2017 12:01 am

White Lotus wrote:seeing impermanence leading to emptiness is unatural.
Impermanence is easier to see first. It is fairly common sense to know that nothing lasts forever. Then when it's broken down to finding the substance that changes, it turns out to be nowhere, hence empty.

"when a sentient being perceives the birth of a dharma, you should have him discard the view of its nonexistence. When he perceives the death of a dharma, you should have him discard the view of its existence. If he discards these views, he will realize that dharmas are by nature absolutely empty and definitely have no birth"
(Sūtra of the Vajra Samādhi, ch 2)
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"

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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by Anonymous X » Fri Mar 31, 2017 5:00 am

White Lotus wrote:I can see emptiness leading to impermanence, but seeing impermanence leading to emptiness is unatural. Surely sunyatta emptiness is not a product of impermanence? It is more likely to be the product or field emanating from 1 if anything. Like gravity surrounding density. Or protoplasm and neucleus of a cell. The speck in the dharma eye.
I don't think emptiness is a product. It is the nature of mind and the nature of all things. You don't produce it. As Astus said, impermanence runs along the lines of common sense. Anyone can see this and you don't have to be a practitioner to know it. Emptiness runs along the lines of illumination. It is an instantaneous knowing of the nature of all things. It is not intellectual and is not induced by anything.

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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by White Lotus » Fri Mar 31, 2017 2:31 pm

"If i look for the substance that changes it turns out to be nowhere." because everything is dependent and has no self? Please explain Astus.
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.

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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by White Lotus » Fri Mar 31, 2017 2:41 pm

Existence and non existence are both extreme views. I do not see emptiness as non existence. Impermanence indicates, but does not lead to 'emptiness'.
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.

White Lotus
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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by White Lotus » Fri Mar 31, 2017 3:02 pm

Emptiness and 1 are mutually existent. Without 1 there can be no 0 and without 0 there can be no 1. 0 depends on 1. Interdependence depends on independence. Buddha is 1 and fundamentally independent. Or perhaps independently dependent. Dependence becomes independent. Nirvana is not emptiness. It is 1. Independent. :)
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.

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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by Astus » Fri Mar 31, 2017 3:37 pm

White Lotus wrote:"If i look for the substance that changes it turns out to be nowhere." because everything is dependent and has no self?
Because if everything changes, then there cannot be a separate substance that does not change.
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"

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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by Bristollad » Fri Mar 31, 2017 3:41 pm

White Lotus wrote:Emptiness and 1 are mutually existent. Without 1 there can be no 0 and without 0 there can be no 1. 0 depends on 1. Interdependence depends on independence. Buddha is 1 and fundamentally independent. Or perhaps independently dependent. Dependence becomes independent. Nirvana is not emptiness. It is 1. Independent. :)
Sorry, not sure what you are trying to say here. 0 and 1 are interdependent concepts? I'd say yes, so are 2 and 0, and 124 and -10. Or are you referring to the reasoning of one and many?

That is, if something were to exist truely independtly, self-sufficiently it would have to exist as one or many. There is nothing which can be shown be a independent one (we can break it up into parts, or designate different parts mentally: e.g. uncompounded space inside the pot/uncompounded space outside of the pot). And so there isn't one. And if there isn't one - there can't be many; because many depends on one. So nothing truely exists independently, self-sufficiently.

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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by Anonymous X » Fri Mar 31, 2017 3:49 pm

Astus wrote:
White Lotus wrote:"If i look for the substance that changes it turns out to be nowhere." because everything is dependent and has no self?
Because if everything changes, then there cannot be a separate substance that does not change.
Yes, everything means everything. :!:

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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by White Lotus » Sat Apr 01, 2017 1:52 pm

I wonder whether the uncompounded space within the pot could be seen as 1. However, that space would be subject to change and so dependently 1. Not ultimate independent 1. What i am saying is that there is someone who does not change. A buddha. Though apparently subject to causation; ultimately he does not change. And neither does nirvana. This is because he is ultimately independent. 1. Thats the symbology of the budda's Urna (point on his forehead). The buddha is perfectly and absolutely 1. Uncompounded. There is something not subject to change, except superficially. In a buddha change is superficial. Not everything is impermanent. :?:
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.

White Lotus
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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by White Lotus » Sat Apr 01, 2017 2:09 pm

Astus, i think that to speak of a "substance" that does not change may be unhelpful. We know that all language misses the point when we are talking about emptiness as an ultimate: it is nameless, wordless and beyond all concept. In the same way 1 which is the focal point of emptiness of emptiness is too simple to say much about. Only that 1 is 1 and independent. I am inclined to think that it is not dependent upon anything. If we say that everything is impermanent we know that there is bound to be an exception to this rule. :?:
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.

White Lotus
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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by White Lotus » Sat Apr 01, 2017 2:21 pm

The 1 and all. In the Avatamsaka sutra we are told that 1 is all, all is 1, 1 is 1 and all is all. The 1 referred to here may be Dependent Reality, however it may just as likely refer to Buddha as ultimate simplicity. We have to admit if we are honest with ourselves that 1 is simpler than 0 and thus more fundamental. :anjali:
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.

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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by Bristollad » Sat Apr 01, 2017 2:26 pm

White Lotus wrote:I wonder whether the uncompounded space within the pot could be seen as 1. However, that space would be subject to change and so dependently 1. Not ultimate independent 1. What i am saying is that there is someone who does not change. A buddha. Though apparently subject to causation; ultimately he does not change. And neither does nirvana. This is because he is ultimately independent. 1. Thats the symbology of the budda's Urna (point on his forehead). The buddha is perfectly and absolutely 1. Uncompounded. There is something not subject to change, except superficially. In a buddha change is superficial. Not everything is impermanent. :?:
The uncompounded space designated as inside the vase is NOT subject to change - it is not made or fabricated, it doesn't change moment by moment. It is simply the lack of obstructive contact. The point is we can mentally designate it as different from uncompounded space that is outside the vase and so it is dependent upon our mental designation.

Where are did you read about the symbology of the Buddha's hair tuft between his brows? Because what you've said doesn't match what is stated in the Large Sutra on Perfect Wisdom (translated by E. Conze) nor Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche, “Maitreya's The Uttaratantra, A treatise on Buddha Essence” nor Maurice Walshe, Thus I Have Heard, The Long Discourses of the Buddha: (Sutta 30 of the Digha Nikaya: Lakkhana Sutta: The Marks of a Great Man, DN III 145 PTS): that is your interpretation doesn't seem to come from the two traditions recorded in the Mahayana nor the tradtion from the Pali suttas.

Not everything is impermanent, true. But the opposite, permanence does not necessarily mean that it exists always and forever. When a man takes his dog out for a walk, there is a absence of the man and the dog in the house. His partner perceives this absence through not being able to see, hear, touch etc. the man and his dog. That absence does not change moment to moment, it is not impermanent. However, when the man and his dog return, the absence has ended. It was a permanent phenomena with a defined start and a defined end. Beging permanent does not equal being eternal necessarily.

As for 1 - this seems to have some incredible significance for you...but I just don't get it. :shrug:

There is no truely existent one, nor truely existent many and so there is nothing that is truely existent.

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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by Astus » Sat Apr 01, 2017 3:47 pm

White Lotus wrote:i think that to speak of a "substance" that does not change may be unhelpful.
Whatever that is the object of attachment is assumed to be an unchanging thing, a substance. To see that such an object is merely the product of conceptual fabrication is recognising emptiness, and thus ending attachment.
We know that all language misses the point when we are talking about emptiness as an ultimate: it is nameless, wordless and beyond all concept.
Emptiness is the ultimate in that it is the absence of identification, of reification, and therefore of clinging.
In the same way 1 which is the focal point of emptiness of emptiness is too simple to say much about. Only that 1 is 1 and independent. I am inclined to think that it is not dependent upon anything. If we say that everything is impermanent we know that there is bound to be an exception to this rule.
That is another example of assuming a substance, hence a basis of attachment and suffering.
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"

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Re: From Impermanence to Buddhahood

Post by White Lotus » Sat Apr 01, 2017 5:09 pm

Is the space within the cup a substance? It is uncompounded 1, but admittedly impermanent. I am not talking about a substance. How can 1 be a substance if it is uncompounded? All substances are compounds and are more than 1. They are collections/ compounds.
in any matters of importance. dont rely on me. i may not know what i am talking about. take what i say as mere speculation. i am not ordained. nor do i have a formal training. i do believe though that if i am wrong on any point. there are those on this site who i hope will quickly point out my mistakes.

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