5heaps wrote:yes, but much of middleway denies reflexive awareness and alaya outright. in other words there is no point considering whether it is truly real or dependent - it just simply doesnt exist. some of middleway would say that the need to assert an alaya to explain dependent arising is a sign of subtle grasping to true existence.
If by "reflexive awareness" you mean the process through which the mind becomes aware of its own operations, Yogācāra does not assert this either because Ordinary Beings cannot perceive their deluded minds. Such ignorance is that which accounts for their cyclic existence. But it cannot be denied at the level of Buddhahood, otherwise a Buddha would possess ignorance and lack wisdom.
The need to assert ālaya
is not simply to explain dependent arising but to demonstrate the principles of consciousness-only, which will allow one to progress through the stages of countering previously held views with presently acquired views, which later dissolve of themselves.
Granted, the cause of ālaya
is exactly the subtle grasping of the manas
which — attaching to it as an inner self — continually perfumes it with seeds of mental energy which sustain it, mutually and perpetually along with manas
and the rest of the evolving consciousnesses in turn.
However, in the manner that the ātman
is admitted to be conventionally real, so too is ālaya
. Mādhyamaka sources would concur, the conventional truth cannot be unaccepted. At the level of conventional truth, upon both scripture and proper reasoning, ālaya
is not indemonstrable and cannot logically be denied.
What is called ālaya
is not a truly real form of consciousness, but a mental construct utilized as a tool for instruction and practice. After all, Ordinary Beings are incapable of truly reflexive awareness. So Buddhas must make use of their Imagined objects to teach them in their language until they can become independent from it and completely transmute the basis for their current situation.
thats an old debate..
false imagination dont exist because those imaginations dont refer to anything - those objects dont exist. therefore we cannot say that these false imaginations exist. however from the point of view of the false imaginations themselves (ie. the internal images) they do exist as images.
The distinction is between Imagination and the Imagined.
If we say Imagination doesn't exist, then nothing can be Imagined. However, we know that is not true. There are a multitude of Imagined appearances arising in deluded beings, so there must be an Imagination. Where there is smoke there is fire. Even if the fire is not directly perceived, that much can be logically deduced.
However, having no Object there can be no Subject. So there is an emptiness of this Imagined duality. As is my point on the agreement of emptiness between Mādhyamaka and Yogācāra doctrines, spoken in Maitreya's verses:
FALSE IMAGINATION EXISTS;
THE DUALITY IN IT DOES NOT EXIST.
IN IT, THERE IS ONLY EMPTINESS;
IN THAT, THERE IS ALSO THIS IMAGINATION.
THEREFORE, I DECLARE THAT ALL DHARMAS
ARE NEITHER EMPTY NOR NOT EMPTY,
BECAUSE OF EXISTENCE, NONEXISTENCE, AND EXISTENCE;
THIS CONFORMS TO THE MIDDLE WAY.