Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

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Rick
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Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Rick » Sat May 05, 2018 11:49 pm

I've read that Buddhist emptiness is a type of dialectical monism* ... and I've read that they have nothing to do with each other.

Anyone out there in Dharma Wheel Land have enough of a clue of both dialectical monism and emptiness to help me understand the relationship (or lack of) between these two views?

Thanks!

* Aka dual-aspect monism, dualistic monism, plural monism
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Rick
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Rick » Sat May 05, 2018 11:55 pm

My (slightly educated) guess would be that, since dialectic monism posits an underlying reality, it is incorrect to say that emptiness is a flavor of dialectic monism. Because no matter how you stretch it, emptiness doesn't allow for any final essence, implicate order, that kind of thing.

Otoh the two truths clearly have a role in emptiness view. And the apparent distinction, but actual unity of the two truths could be said to flirt with dialectic monism.

O woe is me, every time I think I have a clue ... I realize I'm a forever clueless beginner!
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Sherab
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Sherab » Sun May 06, 2018 12:10 am

Rick wrote:
Sat May 05, 2018 11:55 pm
My (slightly educated) guess would be that, since dialectic monism posits an underlying reality, it is incorrect to say that emptiness is a flavor of dialectic monism. Because no matter how you stretch it, emptiness doesn't allow for any final essence, implicate order, that kind of thing.

Otoh the two truths clearly have a role in emptiness view. And the apparent distinction, but actual unity of the two truths could be said to flirt with dialectic monism.

O woe is me, every time I think I have a clue ... I realize I'm a forever clueless beginner!
Buddhism does not posit any form of monism since liberation and omniscience are achieved individually.

There are Buddhists who assert that there is an implicate order and an explicate order. And there are Buddhists who assert that there is no implicate order (ultimate) and that there is only the explicate order (relative). You will find on this board the voices with the most influence belong to the latter. I think they are wrong though.

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Wayfarer
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Wayfarer » Sun May 06, 2018 1:23 am

Glancing at the article, I think it’s a neologism of recent invention. I think Madhyamika is indeed inherently dialectical but I don’t think ‘monistic’ is a good descriptor. I don’t think that Wikipedia article is worth the electrons it’s printed on.
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by muni » Sun May 06, 2018 7:48 am

People create all kinds of things-philosophies, and all kind of isms and then they need to explore them, investigate in them and try to get rid off to keep what is looking correct. Or other theories are created. All just play of nature?

Emptiness-dependence is not a reality but emptiness-dependence is not "not reality".

Is Dharmata permanent since it is timeless? How can there be anything in dependence-emptiness and how can there be nothing in dependence emptiness?

The investigating mind as subject which is qualifying object Dharmata could also see a lasting reality. Because it is then an object of mind and cannot be dependence-emptiness any longer.

Is Monism an objective essence?

When real and unreal both
Are absent from before the mind,
Nothing else remains for mind to do
But rest in perfect peace,
From concept free.~ Shantideva
Last edited by muni on Sun May 06, 2018 7:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Ogyen » Sun May 06, 2018 7:54 am

Wayfarer wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 1:23 am
Glancing at the article, I think it’s a neologism of recent invention. I think Madhyamika is indeed inherently dialectical but I don’t think ‘monistic’ is a good descriptor. I don’t think that Wikipedia article is worth the electrons it’s printed on.
Wikipedia articles can be changed by any contributors...
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"To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never, to forget." –Arundhati Roy

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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Vasana » Sun May 06, 2018 8:16 am

Imo, it can be intellectually satisfying to reframe the dharma in western philosophical terms but don't forget that it's really not essential. Sometimes it helps but sometimes it's more effort than it's worth.

Don't let philosophical indulgence prevent you from actually realizing the view within meditation. How easy it is to use the dharma to distract us from the dharma!
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Rick » Sun May 06, 2018 1:46 pm

Sherab wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 12:10 am
There are Buddhists who assert that there is an implicate order and an explicate order. And there are Buddhists who assert that there is no implicate order (ultimate) and that there is only the explicate order (relative). You will find on this board the voices with the most influence belong to the latter. I think they are wrong though.
What do you think is the correct understanding?
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Rick
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Rick » Sun May 06, 2018 1:51 pm

Wayfarer wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 1:23 am
Glancing at the article, I think it’s a neologism of recent invention. I think Madhyamika is indeed inherently dialectical but I don’t think ‘monistic’ is a good descriptor. I don’t think that Wikipedia article is worth the electrons it’s printed on.
I hear QuantMart has a great deal this weekend on quarks, leptons ... and electrons! Better act fast, supplies are limited.

You might find this more to your liking, Wayfarer: Dual-Aspect Monism.
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Rick
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Rick » Sun May 06, 2018 1:52 pm

muni wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 7:48 am
When real and unreal both
Are absent from before the mind,
Nothing else remains for mind to do
But rest in perfect peace,
From concept free.~ Shantideva
:thumbsup:
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily ...

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Rick
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Rick » Sun May 06, 2018 1:57 pm

Vasana wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 8:16 am
Don't let philosophical indulgence prevent you from actually realizing the view within meditation.
But ... but ... but ... philosophical indulgence tastes sooooooooooooooooo good! :tantrum:
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily ...

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Vasana
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Vasana » Sun May 06, 2018 9:06 pm

Rick wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 1:57 pm
Vasana wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 8:16 am
Don't let philosophical indulgence prevent you from actually realizing the view within meditation.
But ... but ... but ... philosophical indulgence tastes sooooooooooooooooo good! :tantrum:
It can do, but it can also cause indigestion and endless conceptual proliferation. Sometimes a bit of proliferation is needed to go beyond proliferation, but not a spoonful more!

And like Atisha said,

Human life is short,
Objects of knowledge are many.
Be like a swan,
Which can separate milk from water.
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Wayfarer
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Wayfarer » Mon May 07, 2018 2:25 am

Ogyen wrote:Wikipedia articles can be changed by any contributors...
That is true, and I have contributed, but I doubt the academic provenance of this article.
Rick wrote:You might find this more to your liking,
That is a decently written paper. Actually I know what it reminds me of - 'neutral monism':
neutral monism is the view that the mental and the physical are two ways of describing the same elements, which are themselves "neutral", that is, neither physical nor mental. This view denies that the mental and the physical are two fundamentally different things.
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Sherab
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Sherab » Mon May 07, 2018 10:26 am

Rick wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 1:46 pm
Sherab wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 12:10 am
There are Buddhists who assert that there is an implicate order and an explicate order. And there are Buddhists who assert that there is no implicate order (ultimate) and that there is only the explicate order (relative). You will find on this board the voices with the most influence belong to the latter. I think they are wrong though.
What do you think is the correct understanding?
I hold that there is an implicate order or ultimate, and the relative (explicate order) arises in dependence of the lack of recognition or knowledge of the ultimate; that the ultimate is the true reality while the relative is deceptive reality; and that reality is fundamentally mental not physical. As to the nature of the ultimate, it is truly indescribable since all verbal descriptions are based on/in the deceptive reality, the relative.

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Rick
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Rick » Mon May 07, 2018 2:04 pm

This sounds Advaita-ish to me. Are you a fan of Buddhism and Advaita?
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Rick
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Rick » Mon May 07, 2018 2:16 pm

Wayfarer wrote:
Mon May 07, 2018 2:25 am
... what it reminds me of - 'neutral monism':
Yeah, there is a cluster of similar views that posit the ultimate unity/wholeness of apparent dualism, as in mental and physical.
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Sherab
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Sherab » Mon May 07, 2018 3:08 pm

Rick wrote:
Mon May 07, 2018 2:04 pm
This sounds Advaita-ish to me. Are you a fan of Buddhism and Advaita?
Re-read my first post and tell me if it sounds Advaita-ish to you. If yes, why?

Btw, could it be that the fear of being accused of being a fan of Advaita is what made many rejects the idea of an ultimate and cling to the relative instead?

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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by krodha » Tue May 08, 2018 8:30 am

Sherab wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 12:10 am
And there are Buddhists who assert that there is no implicate order (ultimate) and that there is only the explicate order (relative). You will find on this board the voices with the most influence belong to the latter. I think they are wrong though.
No one involved with this board asserts "the latter." The issue is that you personally harbor inaccurate views that prevent you from comprehending what the alleged "latter" are actually saying.

Which is why I said a gestalt shift is required in your own understanding, and until that occurs you will continually fail to grasp what is being said and will persist in your misrepresentation of the position you are objecting to.

Every single time you interact with "the latter," an impasse is reached and it becomes evident that there is no point in continuing the discussion. You're welcome to your opinion but you are deceiving yourself if you think you understand the actual view of those you are disagreeing with.

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Sherab
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Sherab » Tue May 08, 2018 10:43 am

krodha wrote:
Tue May 08, 2018 8:30 am
Sherab wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 12:10 am
And there are Buddhists who assert that there is no implicate order (ultimate) and that there is only the explicate order (relative). You will find on this board the voices with the most influence belong to the latter. I think they are wrong though.
No one involved with this board asserts "the latter." The issue is that you personally harbor inaccurate views that prevent you from comprehending what the alleged "latter" are actually saying.

Which is why I said a gestalt shift is required in your own understanding, and until that occurs you will continually fail to grasp what is being said and will persist in your misrepresentation of the position you are objecting to.

Every single time you interact with "the latter," an impasse is reached and it becomes evident that there is no point in continuing the discussion. You're welcome to your opinion but you are deceiving yourself if you think you understand the actual view of those you are disagreeing with.
Quote: "...even ultimate truth is merely a conventional truth..."
See viewtopic.php?f=53&t=27893&start=60#p436523
When it is asserted that an ultimate truth is merely a conventional truth, it necessarily implies that there is only the conventional truth.

And it all went down into a logical rabbit hole when combined with the definition that "An ultimate truth is the veridical perception of a given entity, a relative truth is the non-veridical perception of a given entity" because it follows that the relative/conventional truth is now both veridical and non-veridical.
See viewtopic.php?f=53&t=27893&start=80#p437741

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Rick
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Re: Dialectical Monism / Emptiness

Post by Rick » Tue May 08, 2018 12:18 pm

I'm a fan of the three-truths flavor of the two truths:

Conventional: Things are what they seem.
Conventional-Ultimate: Things are neither what they seem nor other than what they seem.
Ultimate: <no-thing = nonduality>

These are my words, my way of grokking the 2-3 truths, they are not meant to be taken as an alternative to the dharma teachings.
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