Posted by: Wei Yu

Thusness has recently been very drawn into Jamgon Mipham Rinpoche's teachings, he finds it the most resonating and similar (to his understanding, insights and experiences) among all Tibetan teachers he have read so far.

Thusness and I think the following is a very good book, the presentation is clear and simple to understand and summarizes some of the essential Mipham's teachings. Very highly recommended!

http://www.amazon.com/Jamgon-Mipam-His-…/…/ref=sr_1_3_twi_2…



Jamgön Mipam (1846–1912) is one of the most extraordinary figures in the history of Tibet. Monk, mystic, and brilliant philosopher, he shaped the trajectory of Tibetan Buddhism’s Nyingma school.  This introduction provides a most concise entrée to this great luminary’s life and work. The first section gives a general context for understanding this remarkable individual who, though he spent the greater part of his life in solitary retreat, became one of the greatest scholars of his age. Part Two gives an overview of Mipam’s interpretation of Buddhism, examining his major themes, and devoting particular attention to his articulation of the Buddhist conception of emptiness. Part Three presents a representative sampling of Mipam’s writings.
Posted by: Wei Yu

 http://www.jackkornfield.com/karma-habit/

Karma & Habit

photo 2(6)
In the ancient texts, karma is written as a compound word, karma-vipaka. Karma-vipaka means “action and result,” or what we call cause and effect. This is not a philosophical concept. It is a psychological description of how our experience unfold every day.

A good way to begin to understand karma is by observing our habit patterns. When we look at habit and conditioning, we can sense how our brain and consciousness create repeated patterns. If we practice tennis enough, we will anticipate our next hit as soon as the ball leaves the other player’s racquet. If we practice being angry, the slightest insult will trigger our rage. These patterns are like a rewritable CD. When they are burned in repeatedly, the pattern becomes the regular response. Modern neuroscience has demonstrated this quite convincingly. Our repeated patterns of thought and action actually change our nervous system. Each time we focus our attention and follow our intentions, our nerves fire, synapses connect, and those neural patterns are strengthened. The neurons literally grow along that direction.

Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh describes the karmic process of conditioning with another metaphor: the image of planting seeds in consciousness. The seeds we plant contain the potential to grow when conditions support them. The seed of a magnolia or a redwood tree contains the whole life pattern of the plant, which will respond when suitable conditions of water, earth, and sunlight arise. A Chinese Buddhist text describes these seeds: “From intention springs the deed, from the deed springs the habits. From the habits grow the character, from character develops destiny.”

What we practice becomes habit. What may at one time be beneficial can later become a form of imprisonment. Andrew Carnegie was asked by a reporter about the gathering of riches, “You could have stopped at any time, couldn’t you, because you always had much more than you needed.” “Yes, that’s right,” Carnegie answered, “but I couldn’t stop. I had forgotten how to.” Habits have a collective nature as well as an individual one. When King George II heard the “Hallelujah Chorus” in the first performance of Handel’s Messiah, he was so moved that, against all form, he stood up. Of course, when the king stands, everyone else must stand as well. Since that day, no matter how the performance is done, the whole audience stands. While this is a harmless convention, societies can equally repeat destructive habits of racism, hatred, and revenge.

We can work with habits. Through the mindful process of RAIN, we can rewire our nervous system. The genesis of this transformation is our intention. Buddhist psychology explains that before every act there is an intention, though often the intention is unconscious. We can use recognition, acceptance, investigation of suffering, and non-identification to create new karma. Through mindfulness and non-identification, we can choose a new intention. We can do this moment by moment, and we can also set long-term intentions to transform our life.

Setting a conscious intention was important for Tamara, a woman who ran a community food bank. She had come to meditation to bring balance into her life. But when she first sat quietly and tried to sense her breath, panic arose. She struggled as if she couldn’t get enough air. I had her relax and shift her attention from her breath to her whole body for a time. Later when she went back to her breath, the panic arose again. Staying curious, she actually remember the woozy feeling of ether. She flashed back to stories of her birth. Tamara had been born blue from lack of oxygen and her mother told her it took a long time before the doctor could get her to breathe. In meditation Tamara learned that she couldn’t control the breath of the feelings of panic, but she could set an intention to be present with kindness and then let go. Setting a positive intention changed her meditation for the better.

Then in 2005, Tamara went down to Louisiana for two months to help with food distribution for the survivors of Hurrican Katrina. She discovered that she needed the same focused intentions she had developed in meditation. She met people who were in the grip of the same kind of panic she had discovered within herself. They were frightened, angry, stressed out, trying to stay alive. Often the people in charge were in equally difficult states of overwhelm and shock. Tamara soon realized she couldn’t control the people or situation any more than she could control her own breath. At time she became reactive, and when this happened she would breathe, set an intention to be present with goodwill, then let go. Repeatedly setting a kind intention got her through the two months without being terrified or burned out.

This excerpt is taken from the book, “The Wise Heart: A Guide to the Universal Teachings of Buddhist Psychology”

Posted by: Wei Yu
A conversation with Thusness:

John Tan
11:39pm
John Tan
First u must have clarity of the cause of suffering and cyclical existence before u link here and there. The student bites the finger bring u out of conceptuality but does not bring us out of ignorance.
John Tan
11:51pm
John Tan
See non-conceptuality and conceptuality as empty appearances like pure sound and scenery... they are of equal status, no special hierarchy. Over-skewing towards either is a disservice. If you see a vivid clear rainbow even in non-conceptual mode, if you chase after rainbow without realizing its causal dependencies and empty nature, how is grasping released? If you want to see its dependence arising then initial phase of inferring is necessary. Both must work hand in hand.
Soh Wei Yu
11:59pm
Soh Wei Yu
oic..
John Tan
12:00am
John Tan
And don't understand what you meant about God and Man, conventionally valid and invalid...there are differences between what is valid cognitions among different schools. Even in Madhyamaka between Prasangika (consequent) and Svatantrika (autonomy) school, so you are referring to which one?
Soh Wei Yu
12:00am
Soh Wei Yu
oic.. im not sure lol i havent read up yet
John Tan
12:02am
John Tan
Lol... if you talk about snake and rope, is there certain definite characteristics inherent in snake and rope? If there isn't, how do you differentiate between snake and rope?
Svatantrika says yes and prasangika says no, therefore their definitions of valid cognitions also differ.
So if you are not familiar, just use your existing realizations and experiences to bring you step by step towards clarity of what exactly give rise to suffering and the release of it... don't have to use terms that you are not familiar... confuse yourself and confuse me...lol
Soh Wei Yu
12:12am
Soh Wei Yu
lol.. ic
John Tan
12:12am
John Tan
In your direct realization of anatta, besides the direct taste vivid presence in the 6 entires and exits, what else is realized?
Soh Wei Yu
12:19am
Soh Wei Yu
no agency, so everything is happening on its own, and is disjoint without any linking self and releasing
John Tan
12:20am
John Tan
U taste a freedom, a release, a let go...
So u must realize the differences between non-conceptuality, non-duality as freedom from subject/object dichotomy and freedom from extremes of seeing selflessness in both subject and object.
Soh Wei Yu
12:31am
Soh Wei Yu
ic..
John Tan
12:44am
John Tan
So in Buddhism it is this insight of selflessness that frees one from suffering and cyclical existence. We are not used to this mode of perception and anatta is that first direct experiential taste. So what is object/subject without characteristics and essence? What is cause and effect with inherency? What do we mean by interaction if no essence is found? Bringing this insight of selflessness to all these conventions and understand it thoroughly to realize the conditionality (in contrast to cause and effect) and empty non-arising nature of self and phenomena is prajna wisdom.
John Tan
12:55am
John Tan
Is this current thought free from the previous thought? Does the previous thought meet the current thought? Is this present thought completely free or completely determined by previous thought? You can understand "conditionality" by observing this, the nature of thoughts and nature of experience. Conditionality is neither determinism nor free will...it is the middle path, the "cause and effect" of Buddhism.
John Tan
12:59am
John Tan
So don't look elsewhere, look directly into your experience.
Soh Wei Yu
1:20am
Soh Wei Yu
What is cause and effect with inherency? --> u mean without
John Tan
1:20am
John Tan
Yeah
If we continue to look for the carrying medium between 2 moment of thoughts, profound insight of anatta will not arise and non-locality will not dawn. Our mode of perception will be obscured by the inherent way of understanding things.
Soh Wei Yu
1:29am
Soh Wei Yu
oic..
its like listening to music... the previous note never 'caused' the current note... yet without the previous note the current note will not be played. its conditioned arising but without causal agent
is that right?
John Tan
1:38am
John Tan
Yes. Look into your experience. It is directly pointing at the nature of experience.
Soh Wei Yu
1:38am
Soh Wei Yu
oic..
Soh Wei Yu
9:53am
Soh Wei Yu
its misleading that some people explains emptiness and the dharmakaya as the formless I AM
its like ken wilber
John Tan
10:16am
John Tan
Yes
John Tan
10:45am
John Tan
When listening to music, the beautiful music is formed from the flowing notes but each note when hit is already gone. How is it that we can still hear the music? It is said that "music" is a convention designated in dependence on it parts -- the flowing notes. The "music" is empty and non-arising. The notes never really "meet" each other, never caused each other yet the current note depends on the previous to be played. So "conditionality" but not a causal agent having the inherent power to effect. What is this telling you about designation, emptiness, conditionality and dependent arising? They r telling u the nature of experience, the nature of mind.
John Tan
10:55am
John Tan
So no, buddhism is not Awareness teaching. Not just about the luminous clarity but to realize non-arising emptiness and dependent arising of this luminous clarity and phenomena. See how this realization liberates the mind from its deepest grasping and release itself from the chain of afflictive dependent origination.
John Tan
11:01am
John Tan
U don't hv to drop conceptuality for non-conceptuality but see how both conceptuality and non-conceptuality r empty and non-arisen. That is seeing the pervasiveness of emptiness as absolute truth in all phenomena.
Soh Wei Yu
11:08am
Soh Wei Yu
ic..
John Tan
11:13am
John Tan
I really dun understand y one wants to cherry pick so much. Y can't just let Buddhism b Buddhism.
Posted by: Wei Yu
Taken from Dharma Conection

John Ahn:

Yes, there is no entity. But that is only half of the equation. One has to understand that there is also no contact. To me this is the distinction in the two phrases of anatta. Although we understand that in seeing there is no seer, it may not be as clear that in seeing, only the seen. So it's understood that there is really never any such thing as contact. No meetings ever take place. The experience of the human condition is revealed to be merely a series of impressions: sounds, colors, tactile sensations, smells, tastes, and symbols (meanings and conventionalities).

Impressions have no reality to them, they arise with conditions and disappear with conditions. We have to see this as impressions and not through dualistic cognition. Its impressions seeing impressions liberating impressions.

I do not have full experience with undirection. But so far in my path, the undirection comes when there is total unbinding at the deepest layers of habit, especially at the level of sensations which constitute embodiment. It's a mistake to somehow seek out undirection, because it is the ending of action. If one is still inclined to a state of decisions, actions, and effort, then thinking one is in a spontaneous state is a huge deception. Much practice is needed to undo the habitual patterning of embodied energy, which will continually create sense of physicality and relationships. If you are in a state of relationships, of this, that, here, now, etc then there will always be a a direction. To believe otherwise is, in my opinion, deceiving oneself.

Hence, sadhana.

...

Yes, but there is an element you are missing imo. The second phrase of the anatta insight is to see the dimensionless stand alone texture of awareness as sights, sound, taste, smell, touch, and concept. The self has to be deconstructed by seeing that there is merely manifestation, otherwise there is always a reference to a separateness. Whether it is watcher, I am, void, samadhi, or any other experience seen as more true than the flowing appearance.

...

And yes, there is no such thing as sense base and sense data in direct experience. Its all just arising and ceasing according to conditions.

If we don't apply the principle of dependent origination, we fall in "that-ness" which is how subject hides in object. In reinforcing no-self, the self hides in the effort and objectification, believing that there is no longer any engagement, but just "that." This is a subtle mistake because you can't just get rid of me from "me and that." Me and that are co arising. When the trifold structure of "me, that, and, me and that (action + contact)" dissolve upon insight, there is a very different experience of the sense spheres in that they begin to lose dimension.

They have to form, abiding, boundary, size, duration, etc. It is merely arising then gone like rainbows appear when there is light and water. The entire human experience is the arising and disappearing of such impressions as the 6 tastes. Anyway, that's just my experience and analysis.

...

In experience there is really no such thing as internal or external. That is just conventional framework of mind. You never experience anything internally or externally. There are only impressions of the sense spheres. Which at first is unbelievable because the framework of locality, individuality, and embodiment is so strong.

The teachings of how sense spheres arise dependently upon contact are to point to their emptiness which as an effect liberates one from the inherent view. This teaching really doesn't seem that important at first. Like, "hey, ok, so what? It's obvious stuff happens causally upon interaction..so why is there all this emphasis on dependent arising?"

But it takes a different effect when contemplated from the perspective of nondual experience and seeing the cause of how duality arises, namely through the view of inherence. The clear nondual visual field is experienced (as pointed out by Goran's post above) but it is not liberated into its empty nature. So contemplating its dependent arising is important here.
Posted by: Wei Yu
Thusness:

"We must accept that all are mere imputations but from the insight of anatta, not from the insight of substantialist view. "Phenomena" is understood differently from our general English usage, "phenomenon" in Buddhism in general is object possessing identifiable characteristic and therefore having essence that is findable.

However in Prasangika it is said that phenomena r merely names and imputations. But "mere" imputation in Prasangika cannot be understood apart from its dependencies. This dependency is key and is what dependent arising and emptiness are about. When Prasangika says that things or phenomena are just mere labels, names, designations or imputations, it is not as we understood in common English terminology, rather, it is to be understood from the perspective of dependent designations, not just designations. Without understanding this dependencies, we are not understanding what is meant by "mere designations".

That is, it is mere name/designation/imputation because the designated referent as an entity when sought can never be found apart from its basis of designation. This basic understanding must be there and must go into our inmost mindstream. And only direct insight of anatta can understand the significance. Therefore the non-conceptuality is not simply non-conceptuality as in freedom from labeling but a freedom from the blinding spell of seeing things in terms of 4 extremes from reified designations.

This extends to all phenomena be it conditioned or unconditioned phenomena.

As for non-conceptuality, there are fierce debates between Gorampa and Tsongkhapa. There is also Mipham's view of non-conceptuality but these masters agree that the mode of non-conceptuality is a very specific and special mode of intuitive insight that relates to freedom of extremes, not just imageless bare mode perception."
Posted by: Wei Yu
Consciousness is implied by sensations, but really there are just sensations. You could say that they contain "consciousness" in them, or you could say something like, "In the seeing, just the seen," which is a lot cleaner, if you ask me.
It is on ignorance that there are volitional formations, and on volitional formations depend consciousness, etc.
Thus, with the dissolution of ignorance, sensations are just as they are.
Sensations are utterly transient, so there no substantial thing to awaken in ultimate terms.
Instead, a process of identification and delusion stops, such that no longer do empty, transient, simple sensations create a fundamental illusion of a permanent, continuous, separate, perceiving self that could be liberated.
So, the question is ill-formed: it is not right to ask, "What is liberated?", and it is better to say, "Liberation occurs when a process of delusion stops," or, "Liberation occurs when clear perception of the way sensations always were occurs."
This is also useful, as it points to method, the method being clear perception of sensations.

- Daniel Ingram

Posted by: Wei Yu
It is extremely difficult to express what is 'Isness'. Isness is awareness as forms. It is a pure sense of presence yet encompassing the “transparent concreteness” of forms. There is a crystal clear sensation of awareness manifesting as the manifold of phenomenal existence. If we are vague in the experiencing of this “transparent concreteness” of Isness, it is always due to that ‘sense of self’ creating the sense of division.

~ Thusness, 2007
Posted by: Wei Yu
Something I wrote in March 2012:
Mind, awareness, experience, sensations are synonymous. It is not “mind is aware of experience”. For what is mind? Seeing sight, hearing sound, all is mind. So, experience is mind is awareness. This is the truth of non-duality. The non-conceptual sense of beingness or am-ness is mind, the non-conceptual presence of seeing, hearing, etc too is mind, thoughts too is mind. To apply effort to sustain a particular state of mind as being “nature of mind” is thus irrelevant, since every state and manifestation is in fact not other than the nature of mind. There is no nature of mind apart from mind, and no mind apart from experience. But until this is experientially realized, there is no benefit.
There is nothing concrete, substantial or unchanging about mind, thus allowing for infinite potential of appearances. Emptiness, luminosity and energy co-emerge. Inseparable from the interconnectedness of causes and conditions, vividly present but empty, being a ceaseless flow, appearing as various shapes and forms and bubbles like an endless river flowing according to various conditions. Mind is not some pure potential behind manifestation, rather lacking an independent self-substance, mind points to this very manifestation itself, whatever it is for “you” at this moment (probably the sight of these words).
What about analogies that the nature of mind is like space? It does not mean there is a space behind phenomenon, but rather the mind is empty of a concrete identity, and being so is free from limitations, center or boundaries just like space, manifest as this very appearance. There is no noumenon behind phenomenon. At this point, “who is aware?” no longer applies. Nothing hiding, totally manifest! This is what Padmasambhava meant by “Since there is only this pure observing, there will be found a lucid clarity without anyone being there who is the observer; Only a naked manifest awareness is present.”, and what a cook told Zen Master Dogen, “Nothing in the entire universe is hidden.” This is what Thusness calls, “total transparency”.
Another point to “Nothing in the entire universe is hidden.” is that this manifestation is the activity of the entire universe, so this very manifestation is in fact not different from and not the same as the entire universe. The apple is the sun-apple, the farmer-apple, the air-apple, the universe-apple, the biting is the apple-biting-apple and the mouth-biting-apple, the universe biting apple. Nothing in the universe is hidden for the universe is totally manifest As this very activity. This activity is the manifestation of the whole universe of interdependency in a perfect and complete expression, just like this. The ever evolving process of an interdependent universe universing universe. All causes and conditions are incorporated in seamless interdependence in a single activity. (E.g. Hand, shaking, cup, water, ripples) What we call “universe” is simply this evolving process of interactivity made manifest in each unfolding moment, an interconnected process rolling on and on without an agent, nothing hidden whatsoever.
So in summary: when we talk about “intrinsic awareness” or “intrinsic mind”, we may also call it “intrinsic luminosity of experience”, for what is mind? Nothing whatsoever and yet nothing is not (totally manifest, nothing hidden), the words experience/mind/awareness all point to this very luminous-experience-mind. It points to the dynamic flow of mind-activities. Thus luminosity is not an attribute of a fixed unchanging entity hidden somewhere, but the essence of the manifesting mind/experience itself, unfabricated and unconditioned (not created by something, by effort or by contrivance). And yet manifesting as whatsoever due to an interconnected flow of activities, nothing independent and nothing lasting more than moment.
Experience can really be summed up this way:
Vividly present dependent on conditions
Utterly gone upon the cessation of conditions.
Thus come, thus gone!
One who sees the suchness of dependent origination sees the Dharma, one who sees the Dharma sees the Tathagata (Thus Come One).