Posts Tagged ‘shift’

The Two Paths

Posted: 12/12/2015 in Insight
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point1WARNING 27/2/16

At the time of discussion of “The Two Paths” I was attempting to accommodate an intellectual Path; even whilst doing so I was uncomfortable with it. I tried to focus on the “shift” as described by HHDL but the intellect I was discussing with did not engage with the word – presumably because it was a non-intellectual process. Now that I have accepted mu it is clear that what I am aiming for is beyond intellect, and this whole rationalising of “Two Paths” was just an engagement with intellect. I am keeping this series of discussions on Two Paths on my blog as a warning as to how much the intellect can drag you in the wrong direction.

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Earlier in my blog I considered two Paths:-

zbullet The Path of Awakening
zbullet Deep Study leading to understanding

Where do I stand on these now that it is done and dusted? Perhaps the most important thing I have determined is to get rid of this theosophical capitalisation. The capitalisation related to the Unconditioned, some sort of noumenon. The path is what we do, and as such has no direct contact with the Unconditioned. The Unconditioned is, and that is it; we are in the world of conditions, the path is conditioned.

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Awakening:-

Let’s examine the two paths separately, first the path of awakening. Because I was fanciful concerning the Unconditioned, there was some vague and improper notion of awakening being concerned with the Unconditioned. I described it as a “sort of awakening” because it was that, but mainly it was an awakening from systemic conditioning or miseducation. In Buddhist terms it was breaking through an entrenched atta, the atta of my intellectual ego created by culture and miseducation. I began to describe this as a transcendence from lower to higher manas, it could be from the mundane to the supramundane; I am now going to call this a shift in consciousness, transcendence has too much showbiz attached to it. Somehow the turmoil in my mind at the time of hitting bottom created a jhana that allowed consciousness to emerge. I called this the starting of my path, it was a sort of awakening, but it had nothing to do with the awakening or enlightenment that people associate with the Buddha – I don’t go near that. Other experiences reminded me and reinforced my initial shift, and these experiences I associated with keeping to the path – these experiences were jhanas. So this path of awakening is inaccurately described as a “path of awakening”, it is better described as an insight path. Why insight? Insight comes through jhanas, right concentration, allowing consciousness to emerge. Initially the consciousness was blocked by the atta of miseducation and drink, and the resulting turmoil created a focus of concentration that allowed a shift in consciousness, a development of insight initially followed by gaining insights. This recent process spurred by group discussion online appears to have radically altered the description of this path but from where I look at it I don’t feel so; rationally it looks very different, I think.

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Deep Study:-

Following the discussions I have much more time for this approach of deep study but I am completely unhappy with it. Primarily it allows the intellectual to consider they are on the path simply by studying. I contend that this cannot be. Understanding requires concentration and insight, an insight that is not just reasoning, not even unconscious reasoning. It requires “contact with consciousness”, concentration creating the channel for that contact. This might happen through deep study because the concentration might cause it, but if it is then attributed to reason I see the intellectual atta clinging. I think this might be an unconscious path, and therefore similar to an insight path. The intellectual perceives this path as intellect, analysis and reason (because of atta), yet through the study develops the concentration that produces the insight and then attributes that insight to analysis. Does this matter? Yes, because they don’t see a shift in consciousness, they don’t see how much their focus on reason traps them in their mundane realm of analysis. How much they miss out on because of this I cannot know? Maybe nothing, maybe the whole world?

However the two paths are very little different. There is the shift in consciousness, this is very important. Because it is not life-changing like hitting bottom does not mean that it does not happen on the deep study path, but it does not happen in an earth-shattering way. The paths are different by emphasis, ie the words that are used. The insight path focusses on the concentration that leads to the understanding whilst recognising a role for reason, deep study focusses on reasoning.

How important is the turmoil? In Zen they have koans, they want to create the turmoil that produces the jhana. In my hitting bottom the turmoil happened because of my culture and miseducation, for the deep study path this turmoil is not emphasised – maybe it occurs but reason does not want to admit to it because it is not rational. In last night’s realisation LINK the intellectual turmoil was a prerequisite for the jhana, the jhana would not have happened without it, and the understanding would not have occurred.

At one stage in the online group I questioned whether the intellectual asked about their own path, I still feel that. Because they are attached to reason they don’t examine processes like turmoil and concentration, and insight becomes analysis.

Buddhism does somewhere I am sure but I don’t know the Pali/suttas.

Books:- Treatise, Wai Zandtao Scifi, Matriellez Education.

Blogs:- Ginsukapaapdee, Matriellez.

Fanciful Compassion

Posted: 24/11/2015 in Insight
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I slipped up, I tried to do too much. I have been attempting to understand another’s Path, I cannot. It is ludicrous to try to understand what I mean by Insight through intellect as has been evidenced in my previous discussions that have turned nasty. Yet I still try, but at least this time it did not turn nasty and led to an error on my part only.

There is another intellectual illusion that has come up – analytical meditation (I am not writing for a group here). One important aspect of meditation is to remove the chattering mind, what is the main component of the chattering mind – intellect. Is there an analysis that occurs in meditation – possibly? I know my meditation, there are times when there is chattering mind full of intellect, and there are times when thoughts come in as Insight; is there analysis during meditation – possibly? I need a clear mind of meditation to resolve this. My desire for tolerance allowed me to accept an intellectual approach that I find so completely difficult to accept, what I would describe as intellect masquerading as analytical meditation. I can’t see it any other way. I am doing my tolerant bending again, I am trying to see this intellectual masquerade as a Path – tolerance. To be tolerant I must allow the possibility of this being a Path, but I must not allow this type of masquerade to cloud my own judgement. I must not react to the intellectualism, I see my getting fanciful as being part of this.

I wrote this email:-

“Compassion is more than an emotion, it is more than just something we feel. Ultimately there is the Unconditioned, then there are the 4 brahma-viharas – divine abodes. From my Buddhist dictionary “ “‘There, o monks, the monk with a mind full of loving-kindness pervading first one direction, then a second one, then a third one, then the fourth one, just so above, below and all around; and everywhere identifying himself with all, he is pervading the whole world with mind full of loving-kindness, with mind wide, developed, unbounded, free from hate and ill-will.” Hereafter follows the same theme with compassion, altruistic joy, and equanimity.”

This reminded me of the hermetic tradition “as above so below”. When an abode is divine is it as not as close to the Voidness as possible? I suggest there is a noumenal compassion that is part of the Voidness, having no phenomenon, no atta. In the same way there is a Wisdom that is noumenal having no atta. If Insight can touch Wisdom, can compassion meditation touch Voidness-Compassion? Theosophy says “there is no religion higher than truth”. Is there a Voidness-Truth that has no atta? Intellectually this makes no sense. In meditation I came to this, I trust my meditation.

“Beyond all desires? Kusala, or wholesome/skillful ones as well? Then where’s compassion or metta?” When in a divine abode there is Natural Wisdom, Naturally skilful.

Divine abode is religious “jargon”. Even if this “noumenal” description is created, surely a “divine abode” has got to be pretty close to the Source, more than emotion, and wise because of proximity to the Source – hence skilful.

Proof, being a Buddhadasa addict I have to prove. There are 2 sources of proof, scientific or objective proof – very limited, and subjective proof; my primary source of subjective proof is Insight meditation. The above has that subjective seal of approval – from me. It does not have intellectual approval.”

You can see a reaction to an intellectual straitjacket in this.

OK what is this noumenal “Voidness-Compassion”? Ludicrous. It was a nice intellectual construct to put Compassion, Truth, Wisdom in Voidness, good intellectual ego on my part. I was deluded by the Dzogchen quote, taken from the last blog “Dzogchen also speaks of the “self-arising deep awareness” (rang-byung ye-shes) that is primordial (gnyug-ma) and arises simultaneously (lhan-skyes, innate) in each moment of cognition. This deep awareness is part of the nature of pure awareness (rig-pa), the subtlest level of mental activity, devoid of all fleeting stains, such as those of unawareness (ignorance). When we access this deepest level, the deep awareness of the two truths is revealed. In Western terms, we would classify this deep awareness as intuitive.”” This is so seductive – “part of the nature of pure awareness (rig-pa)”.

I made another error, I allowed Tibetan to seduce me, Sogyal did all that as well. “Talk of Gods, talk of touching rig-pa, and what else, meditating you are a God”, it is the Course in Miracles delusion. Am I a God, can I be a God in meditation? Fanciful.

I read this “The Four Sublime States by Venerable Nyanaponika Thera”. Isn’t sublime state enough? Why do I need to touch rig-pa – Voidness-Compassion?

How can the destructive intellect to describe such a sublime state as emotion? That is because intellect wants to assume that intellect is all that there is in mind. Why can’t a sublime state be wise? Again a good intellectual question because the intellect is destructive. A mind can have a sublime state, such a state is meant to be. Such a sublime state is wise, it is beyond intellect, intellect cannot reach it, it can analyse the results of such a state but it cannot reach it. Nature.

In trying to understand the intellect in a Path I allowed my own intellect to create a ludicrous proposition “Voidness-Compassion”, intellect is such a trickster.

In meditation compassion has been special, just because it is special cannot make it “Voidness-Compassion”. So careless and fanciful on my part.

Books:- Treatise, Wai Zandtao Scifi, Matriellez Education.

Blogs:- Ginsukapaapdee, Matriellez.

point1WARNING 27/2/16

At the time of discussion of “The Two Paths” I was attempting to accommodate an intellectual Path; even whilst doing so I was uncomfortable with it. I tried to focus on the “shift” as described by HHDL but the intellect I was discussing with did not engage with the word – presumably because it was a non-intellectual process. Now that I have accepted mu it is clear that what I am aiming for is beyond intellect, and this whole rationalising of “Two Paths” was just an engagement with intellect. I am keeping this series of discussions on Two Paths on my blog as a warning as to how much the intellect can drag you in the wrong direction.

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“If you are serious about Dharma practice, it is important to cultivate a good understanding of the teachings. First of all, it is important to read the texts. The more texts you read – the more you expand the scope of your learning and reading – the greater the resource you will find for your own understanding and practice. When, as a result of deep study and contemplation on what you have learned as related to your personal understanding, you reach a point on each topic when you have developed a deep conviction that this is how it is, that‘s an indication you have attained what is called understanding, derived through contemplation or reflection. Before that, all your understanding will have been intellectual understanding, but at that point it shifts. Then you have to cultivate familiarity, make it into part of your daily habit. The more you cultivate familiarity, the more it will become experiential.”
Dalai Lama, The Middle Way: Faith Grounded in Reason

This is the model I am using for the Study Path.

It is a major concession on my part to consider intellectual understanding as part of a Path but that doesn’t make my assessment of the intellectual ego invalid. The intellectual ego is so divisive. This ego is not tolerant, and insists that all accept its way; such a dangerous weapon.

Nature has given us a tool to control this ego – meditation. Having had battles with my own intellect I know how important meditation is to me to maintain control, and that is on a Path which does not see intellectual understanding as part. In fact in many ways connecting the words intellectual and understanding for me seems inappropriate. One aspect of the tool, intellect, is that it enables ideas to be held in the mind to be examined; this of course is not understanding but the intellect will always want to delude you that it is. In my view HHDL’s Path requires a great amount of meditation, something he does – I believe I read he sits for 4 hours a day.

There is another interesting observation. Minds dominated by the intellect find it difficult to meditate, typically “meditation does nothing for me”. I conclude without any real justification an incompatibility, maybe it is just incompatibility with an ego that is intellectual. I certainly conclude that someone on the study Path cannot let meditation go.

I broke down the Study Path into 6 stages:-

• Deep study
• Contemplation or reflection
• Deep conviction that this how it is – these first 3 are intellectual
• Shifting
• Cultivating familiarity
• Experiential understanding

I have not received any explanation how this connects with Insight despite highlighting its importance – as I saw it.

This Study Path is a Path I must tolerate as yet I do not understand how it can be a genuine Path without Insight. Where is the awakening in it? My yardstick!!!

Books:- Treatise, Wai Zandtao Scifi, Matriellez Education.

Blogs:- Ginsukapaapdee, Matriellez.