Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Madhyamika and Shentong - 3

In response to a quote from a song of Milarepa, where Rechugnpa experienced a glimpse of emptiness and felt lost, becauase there was nothing to hold on :-)

Interestingly enough, this is precisely what Madhyamika method leads to ... the realisation that there is nothing whatsover to hold onto, and whatever we turn to in our attempt to ground ourselves, that too is empty, and devoid of anything we could establish as a ground ...

In response to a comment that it is hard to tell where view starts and ends, and experience starts and ends.

As I've argued in my previous email, I would say that that is because View and experience are intimately related, because View is not an intellectual thing (though it can find intellectual _expression), but is in fact our realisation, our wisdom, our means of 'seeing'.

In response to the statement that Madhyamika as part of Mahamudra practice is not a separate teaching ot foundation or whatever - but rather one of the aspects of practice. It is the projection of experience into words and logical constructs, so to say.

Again, as mentioned in my previous post, I'd argue that Madhyamika is indeed part of Mahamudra practice, one which is especially suited to clarifying View, and not just a projection of experience into words and constructs, but the skilful employment of words and contructs to engender realisation.

In response to the position that logic can always be defeated, as can reason, and therefore have no value by themselves in the spiritual path.

In response I guess I'd say that the point of Madhyamika method is in part a means to take reason or thinking to its limit and beyond, and lead the person to a place from which they can lead to direct perception. It is taught that it is a mistake to foreshorten this process, and just 'believe' that it is impossible for thinking to grasp the truth of things. Because such a belief is a thought in itself, and one which is not a realisation. The realisation of the nature of thought and mind, is one which comes with the seeing through of thought, not the acceptance of a thought which says thought is not enough .. .if you see? However, I'd agree that there are many methods to this goal, but that traditionally, Kagyu teachings have given a significant role to Madhyamika methods, and not just Mahamudra methods.

Once again I must leave now .. and will reply to your most interesting points about Shentong in another post ... till then,

very best wishes in the Dharma

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