Should I change my mind?

General discussion, particularly exploring the Dharma in the modern world.
[N.B. This is the forum that was called ‘Exploring Buddhism’. The new name simply describes it better.]
Post Reply
User avatar
tomschwarz
Posts: 654
Joined: Mon Jan 12, 2015 12:31 am

Should I change my mind?

Post by tomschwarz » Tue Mar 13, 2018 8:20 pm

dear friends,

let's talk about the subject of transforming our minds. often people shy away from that idea in favor of the idea that all is perfect as is; all is empty of inherent existence; i have buddha nature; etc...

although that is all true, there is the idea that something is wrong with our minds, that we need to change (with or without renunciation), that we have fundamental ignorance, the other 2 poisons, anger and desire, etc...

so how do you reconcile the idea that there is nothing to transform and the idea that we need to change our minds?

his holiness the dalai lama of tibet, recent said:
it seems now to me, over a few decades of experience, the ancient indian knowledge about mind...
...so obviously,
indian tradition, the practice of samatha, practice of vipasana,
so single pointed mind or analytical mediation,
...so these are transforming or method to transform our mind.
see 34:10

do you disagree?
i dedicate this post to your happiness, the causes of your happiness, the absence of your suffering the causes of the absence of your suffering that we may not have too much attachment nor aversion. SAMAYAMANUPALAYA

User avatar
PadmaVonSamba
Posts: 2960
Joined: Sat May 14, 2011 1:41 am

Re: Should I change my mind?

Post by PadmaVonSamba » Wed Mar 14, 2018 3:03 am

Washing your bowl after a meal transforms it from a dirty bowl to a clean bowl.
Nothing about the original nature of the bowl has changed.
.
.
.
Profile Picture: "The Foaming Monk"
The Chinese characters are Fo (buddha) and Ming (bright). The image is of a student of Buddhism, who, imagining himself to be a monk, and not understanding the true meaning of the words takes the sound of the words literally. Likewise, People on web forums sometime seem to be foaming at the mouth.
Original painting by P.Volker /used by permission.

User avatar
tomschwarz
Posts: 654
Joined: Mon Jan 12, 2015 12:31 am

Re: Should I change my mind?

Post by tomschwarz » Wed Mar 14, 2018 8:58 pm

PadmaVonSamba wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 3:03 am
Washing your bowl after a meal transforms it from a dirty bowl to a clean bowl.
Nothing about the original nature of the bowl has changed.
The general meaning of your analogy is clear, back to the mind, we need to clean the mind of the three poisons, conflicted mental states, undisciplined conceptual running from the absolute truth, etc... but something underneath remains as it was. Is this what you mean?
i dedicate this post to your happiness, the causes of your happiness, the absence of your suffering the causes of the absence of your suffering that we may not have too much attachment nor aversion. SAMAYAMANUPALAYA

User avatar
PadmaVonSamba
Posts: 2960
Joined: Sat May 14, 2011 1:41 am

Re: Should I change my mind?

Post by PadmaVonSamba » Thu Mar 15, 2018 3:00 am

tomschwarz wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 8:58 pm
PadmaVonSamba wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 3:03 am
Washing your bowl after a meal transforms it from a dirty bowl to a clean bowl.
Nothing about the original nature of the bowl has changed.
The general meaning of your analogy is clear, back to the mind, we need to clean the mind of the three poisons, conflicted mental states, undisciplined conceptual running from the absolute truth, etc... but something underneath remains as it was. Is this what you mean?
What remains is the natural clarity of mind. That's it's original nature.
I hesitate tom use the phrase "natural state" because that might suggest an intrinsically existent thing.
Fundamentally, mind doesn't change. There is nothing to transform. But to transform simply means to change.
Mind isn't changing. what mind is doing is changing.

There's really no contradiction.
What you asked was:
tomschwarz wrote: ...so how do you reconcile the idea that there is nothing to transform and the idea that we need to change our minds
...in other words, transform it or leave it alone, right?
so... maybe this is a dualistic approach, and there's really no difference? maybe!

But, my understanding is that everything is emptiness. It is our minds that are already transforming an empty world into this and that thing that we like or hate or whatever, solidifying things that aren't solid, treating temporary composites as permanent and then getting all upset when things change, all these projections of our mind that we become attached to.

Maybe, better to say, "readjust our understanding in order to understand that there is nothing to adjust.
.
.
.
Profile Picture: "The Foaming Monk"
The Chinese characters are Fo (buddha) and Ming (bright). The image is of a student of Buddhism, who, imagining himself to be a monk, and not understanding the true meaning of the words takes the sound of the words literally. Likewise, People on web forums sometime seem to be foaming at the mouth.
Original painting by P.Volker /used by permission.

User avatar
tomschwarz
Posts: 654
Joined: Mon Jan 12, 2015 12:31 am

Re: Should I change my mind?

Post by tomschwarz » Thu Mar 15, 2018 8:16 am

Very beautiful thank you. You answer is clear and reminds me of similar experiences, e.g. after training the mind in the wisdom of discernment, coming to deeply accept/ to the point of "understanding" (at least in terms of causation) everything as it is.

I think most all, this is a thread about style. 1) how do you approach discipline and mind transformation against clear goals (e.g. calm mind) and 2) how in your experience does that "plop you off" in the land of peace where all is quite logical as is, without renunciation.

Amazing there really is a harmony in the two ideas. But it is quite illusive. Something like a dance of swirling globular energies so that one feeds into the other the other feeds into one, one is in front of the other, the other is in front of one, in other words their state together, the juxtaposition, is dynamic and can not be laid out didacticly (in hard and fast terms).

For example, suffering is quite natural. After all it is the first noble truth. So while nature of bowl, dirt of bowl makes sense, as you suggested also both are the nature of the dirty bowl, and actually, as you also would agree, the emptiness aspect of the dirty bowl is quite complete (in terms of enlightenment) as it is.... ....swirl back on the wind of discipline, to meditate two times daily, to identify the dirt, to plops into cleaner peace, to permeate all things, to exchange self for other, to not cling to Independent existence illusion, to be at peace with the dirt, the bowl, to embody the emptiness without discrimination.
i dedicate this post to your happiness, the causes of your happiness, the absence of your suffering the causes of the absence of your suffering that we may not have too much attachment nor aversion. SAMAYAMANUPALAYA

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Harimoo, Marc, tenyang and 48 guests