John Tan sent two potent koans to a friend -- good for contemplation.

1) Without thoughts, tell me what is your very mind right now?

2) Without using any words or language, how do you experience ‘I’ right now?

(In the Zen tradition, we also have, "When you're not thinking of anything good and anything bad, at that moment, what is your original face?" (Sixth Patriarch Hui-Neng), "What is the original face before your parents were born?"

A similar koan led to my initial sudden awakening in February 2010.)


Replying to someone in Rinzai Zen discussion group, John Tan wrote recently:


“I think we have to differentiate wisdom from an art or a state of mind.
In Master Sheng Yen’s death poem, 
 
Busy with nothing till old. (无事忙中老)
In emptiness, there is weeping and laughing. (空里有哭笑)
Originally there never was any 'I'. (本来没有我)
Thus life and death can be cast aside. (生死皆可抛)
 
This "Originally there never was any 'I'" is wisdom and the dharma seal of anatta. It is neither an art like an artist in zone where self is dissolved into the flow of action nor is it a state to be achieved in the case of the taoist "坐忘" (sit and forget) -- a state of no-mind. 
 
For example in cooking, there is no self that cooks, only the activity of cooking. The hands moves, the utensils act, the water boils, the potatoes peel and the universe sings together in the act of cooking. Whether one appears clumsy or smooth in act of cooking doesn't matter and when the dishes r out, they may still taste horrible; still there never was any "I" in any moment of the activity. There is no entry or exit point in the wisdom of anatta.”

Soh: Typing is mind, words appearing on screen are buddha mind. No mind, no buddha, no unchanging, no changing.

Mr M: Is the mind the unchanging?
Soh replied: After initial awakening (the doubtless realization of one’s essence as Pure Presence-Awareness), true nature appears unchanging, and everything seems to appear and disappear within an unchanging infinite context of luminous awareness or true self. This is 'apparent within the real'.
After the next awakening, true nature is seen to be empty of its own unchanging self and is instead found to be none other than the brilliant displays of appearance, all are the zero dimensional zero distance intimate gapless display of one's original face without center or boundaries. The duality of timelessness and time collapses. All these are called the second rank of Tozan as explained by Hakuin, 'real within the apparent'.
There have been further insights and deepening actualizations after that.
Mr. M: Soh Wei Yu can you see it with your eyes? Like what is Buddha... that oak tree in the garden .. that dry shitstick .. or gutei' finger.
Soh replied: Yes.. not just with the eyes. Whole body is the seeing, universe is the walking.
Mr. M: Can you describe what you see?
Soh replied: Lots of descriptions can be given, but as the zen proverb goes, the person who drinks it knows best whether the water is hot or cold
Mr. M: Soh Wei Yu im just asking your experience ...how do your eyes see since you said you can see it.
Soh: Be it green leaves or the blue sky, even prior to these labels, everything is vibrantly alive presencing, crystal, pellucid, luminous, pure and perfect, no self, no other, no perceiver and perceived, no agent and action, no separation, no distance, no dimension and unfindable.


More posts there:

  • Many Zen and Ch'an masters do point to a similar realization as Hinduism's Atman, however as some of them clarified, such as Phillip Kapleau Roshi, it is simply an initial realization and the realization is to be refined later on. Hinduism's Atman is the direct authentication of the aspect of the luminous clarity and Presence of our Buddha-nature, but its empty nature ('no mind' as taught by Bodhidharma) is realised later on. Prior to that refinement of insight, Buddha-nature can be somewhat reified into Atman-Brahman.
    For example, Phillip Kapleau Roshi mentioned in his book "Straight to the Heart of Zen: Eleven Classic Koans & Their Inner Meanings", the two distinct phases of realization in Zen practice that corresponds to what I personally term "I AM realization" and "anatta~total exertion":
    "...A shallow kensho is not fully satisfying. One has seen into constant change, it is true, and into the formless Self as well - that which makes change possible. One has caught a glimpse of both change and changelessness. But it's only a glimpse, and it is not enough, because in reality, the two worlds of change and changelessness are not really two at all. After a time this initial seeing makes us want to go further, deeper. Instinctively we know that it's only well-chewed food that nourishes and satisfies. This we might take as meaning long training through which we more fully integrate our understanding into our daily lives. Our enlightenment is fully digested. Now change is Changelessness. This is what keeps away hunger and uncertainty, anxiety, fear, and above all unsatisfactoriness, the constant feeling of being on edge, alienated, separated - 'a stranger and afraid', as the poet A. E. Housman wrote, 'in a world I never made.' At last we know real peace.
    The verse says: 'This one instant, as it is, is an infinite number of kalpas.' What is a kalpa? The sutras describe a kalpa as the length of time it would take a heavenly being, adeva, sweeping its gossamer wings across the top of the mile-high mountain once each year to wear that mountain down to the ground. This one instant is a kalpa. All time is in this instant, and an infinite number of kalpas are, at the time, this one instant. All time means past, present, and future....
    ...if our mind is entirely free from both time and timelessness, it we are living fully and wholly every moment, every moment is everything; all of time is in each full, vitally alive moment. If one has truly seen into time and timelessness - if one has really become time itself - then there is no notion of time or timelessness to hinder or bind..."
    6

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  • Mr M:
  • This thing is a hot subject. It is not a thing because things change.. what does not change .. doesn't move a bit .. do you realize it or discover it... do you use your mind or your senses... like when the Buddha raised a flower without any word... this is the primary goal of zen practice..me thinks...

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  • Soh Wei Yu
    But our true nature is also not static and unmoving like a dead pool of still water. In the five ranks of Tozan, the first rank is the 'The Apparent within the Real', but it is to be followed by deeper insights such as 'The Real within the Apparent' and so on.
    The first Ch'an Patriarch Bodhidharma said, "But this mind isn’t somewhere outside the material body of four elements.Without this mind we can’t move. The body has no awareness. Like a plant or stone, the body has no nature. So how does it move? It’s the mind that moves. Language and behavior, perception and conception are all functions of the moving mind. All motion is the mind’s motion. Motion is its function. Apart from motion there’s no mind, and apart from the mind there’s no motion. But motion isn’t the mind. And the mind isn’t motion. Motion is basically mindless. And the mind is basically motionless. But motion doesn’t exist without the mind. And the mind doesn’t exist without motion. Theres no mind for motion to exist apart from, and no motion for mind to exist apart from. Motion is the mind’s function, and its function is its motion. Even so, the mind neither moves nor functions, the essence of its functioning is emptiness and emptiness is essentially motionless. Motion is the same as the mind. And the mind is essentially motionless. Hence the Sutras tell us to move without moving, to travel without traveling, to see without seeing, to laugh without laughing, to hear without hearing, to know without knowing, to be happy, without being happy, to walk without walking, to stand without standing. And the sutras say, "Go beyond language. Go beyond thought." Basically, seeing, hearing, and knowing are completely empty. Your anger, Joy, or pain is like that of puppet. You search but you won’t find a thing."
    "Once you know this, walking, standing, sitting, or lying down, everything you do is Zen. To know that the mind is empty is to see the Buddha. The Buddhas of the ten directions" have no mind. To see no mind is to see the Buddha." - http://awakeningtoreality.blogspot.com/.../bodhidharmas...
    "At this, the disciple all at once greatly awakened and realized for the first time that there is no thing apart from mind, and no mind apart from things. All of his actions became utterly free. Having broken through the net of all doubt, he was freed of all obstruction." - Bodhidharma text The Doctrine of No Mind (无心论)
    Bodhidharma's Zen Teachings
    AWAKENINGTOREALITY.BLOGSPOT.COM
    Bodhidharma's Zen Teachings
    Bodhidharma's Zen Teachings

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  • Linji/Rinzai Ch'an Master Hui Lu from Taiwan (author of Towards Perfect Completion of Life) said, partial excerpt from http://awakeningtoreality.blogspot.com/.../true-mind-and... - reading the full page is highly recommended
    "譬如说:释迦牟尼佛从来没有讲过随缘不变,不变随缘,而我们大乘佛法的法师,一直引用这一句话,这一句话是无始无明,是错误的,佛陀从来没有讲过这一句话;佛陀也没有讲过说:真空出妙有,妙有真空,释迦世尊,找遍三藏十二部,佛从来没有讲过这一句话。
    For example: Shakyamuni Buddha has never said anything like "while following conditions one is unchanged, one is unchanged while following conditions". That [saying] actually came from our Mahayana venerables, they keep on spouting such saying, such a saying is actually [based on] beginningless ignorance, it is a false understanding, the Buddha has never said such a saying; the Buddha has never said: from true emptiness comes marvellous existence, marvellous existence true emptiness, [I have] searched throughout the entire Tripitaka [the three textual collections of sutras, vinaya and abhidharma] and Shakyamuni Buddha has never ever said such a thing.
    佛陀也从来没有讲过说:从假入空,从空出假;不著两边,谓之中道。
    The Buddha has also never said: from the illusory one enters into emptiness, from emptiness the illusory is produced; not attaching to either side is known as the middle way.
    释迦世尊从来就没有讲过这种话,没有的!
    Shakyamuni Buddha has never said such a saying, never!
    翻遍三藏十二部经典,没有讲过不变随缘,随缘不变;也从来没有讲过:真空出妙有,妙有出真空;也从来没有讲过说:从假入空,从空出假,不著两边,谓之中道,有出有入,哪里是佛性呢?
    I have flipped through the Tripitaka's twelve sections of sutras, it has never ever said anything with regards to "being unchanged while following conditions, following conditions while being unchanged"; it has never said: "true emptiness produces miraculous existence, from miraculous existence comes true emptiness"; and it has never said: "from the illusory one enters into emptiness, from emptiness comes the illusory, not attaching to either side is known as the middle way". Having an exit and entry, how could that be Buddha-nature?
    所以,第一句话应该改成:随缘显现。
    Therefore, the first saying should be changed into: Appearing according to conditions.
    说:不变随缘,随缘不变,我们一般有自性见,认为如来藏性,就是如如不动,如如不动,好像是一潭死水一样。错了!
    Those who say: being unchanged by the flow of conditions, the flow of conditions does not change/affect us - we usually have the view of a self-nature, conceiving that the Treasury of the Thus Come One is always unchanging in suchness, unchanging in suchness, like a pool of dead water. Wrong!
    它会起妙用的,所以,它随缘可以显现,佛陀说法也在定中,行住坐卧,统统运用,之妙存乎一心,哪有一种东西是不变的东西?
    It can give rise to marvellous function, therefore, it manifests according to conditions. When the Buddha preaches the dharma he is also in Samadhi, in movement, standing, sitting and sleeping, the ingenuity in varying usage depends on natural intelligence, how could there be an unchanging thing?
    这个随缘不变,会让人家落入:有一种东西不变,一直在找寻有一种东西不变,认为有一种东西叫做永恒。
    This "being immutable in the midst of conditions" will cause people to fall into (the conclusion of): there is a kind of "something" that is unchanging, and one constantly seeks after a kind of "something that is not changing", mistaken that there is a kind of "something" that is called "eternal".
    他所谓永恒是永远不执著,充满智慧心叫做永恒,不是有一种东西叫做永恒。
    [In actuality] what is known as eternal is eternally non-abiding, filled with wisdom-mind - that is called eternal, it is not that there is a kind of "thing" that is called eternal.
    要了解,有为法就是无为法,有为法就是缘起生灭无常法;彻底空就是无为法,当体即空,二话不说。
    We have to understand, conditioned dharma IS precisely unconditioned dharma, conditioned dharma is the dependently arisen, arising and ceasing, impermanent dharmas; it is completely empty and hence unconditioned dharma, its immediate essence is empty, we do not speak of any dualities.
    所以说:随缘显现,才是完全大悟的人讲的话,你随缘不变,哪一种东西不变呢?
    Therefore we say: manifesting according to conditions, is what completely and greatly realized people would say, for if you talk about "being immutable in the face of conditions", what is the thing that never changes?
    大悟的人知道,佛性像摩尼宝珠,胡来胡现,汉来汉现,它会变的,不变就是一潭死水了,它怎么起作用呢?
    Those greatly realized mind knows that Buddha-Nature is like the Wish-Fulfilling Gem, when the Hu man arrives Hu man is made manifest, when the Han man arrives Han man is made manifest, it will always change, if it were unchanging it would be like a pool of dead water, how could it manifest functions?
    是不是?如果如来藏不变,那释迦牟尼佛怎么讲经说法呢?
    Isn't that the case? If the Treasury of the Thus Come One never changes, then how would Shakyamuni Buddha expound the sutras and preach the dharma?
    它不变,一潭死水,释迦牟尼佛讲经说法就是妙用现前,怎么会不变呢?
    [If] it is unchanging, [it would be like] a pool of dead water, when Shakyamuni Buddha expounds the sutras that would be the coming forth of marvellous activities, how could it have been that it never changes?
    是不是?所以说:佛性是无常的,所谓佛性是无常,是站在妙用的角度讲的;佛性讲常,是站在体的角度讲的,对不悟的众生,只有这样讲。
    Isn't that the case? Therefore: Buddha nature is Impermanence. What is known as Buddha-nature is Impermanence, is spoken from the point of view of marvellous activities; when Buddha-nature is spoken as permanent, it is spoken from the perspective of [fundamental] body, when speaking to those who have not realized, this is the only way we can explain.
    讲无常,是佛悲天愍人,让你觉悟万法生灭无常,空无自性,所以,释迦世尊不得不讲无常,让你觉悟,提早觉悟。
    When speaking of Impermanence, that is due to the Buddha's bemoaning the state of the universe and pitying the fate of mankind, thus letting us realize that the ten thousand dharmas are arising and ceasing in impermanency, empty without self-nature, therefore, Shakyamuni Buddha cannot avoid speaking about Impermanence to let you realize it earlier.
    True Mind and Unconditioned Dharma
    AWAKENINGTOREALITY.BLOGSPOT.COM
    True Mind and Unconditioned Dharma
    True Mind and Unconditioned Dharma

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  • 讲常,是因为给二乘人有一个依靠,说我们的如来藏性是常乐我净,二乘人又执著有一种东西叫做常乐我净,又执著一个常。
    When explaining Permanence, it is for the purpose of providing something to rely on for the practitioners of the two [lower] vehicles, wherefore we speak of our Treasury of the Thus Come One as Permanence, Bliss, Self and Purity, however the practitioners of the two [lower] vehicles then grasp after a kind of something that is 'Permanent, Blissful, Self and Purity', and thus again becoming attached to an eternal something.
    (my personal comments: certainly this issue does not apply to the 'arahants' of Buddhism who have realized anatta or no-soul, maybe the comment is more appropriate for adherents of the non-Buddhist tradition, the term 'two vehicles' originally meant for the arahants and pratyekabuddhas have in latter days of Chinese Mahayana become a very loose term used to imply all and any kind of 'misguided practitioners')
    释迦牟尼佛讲无常,是为了破除你的贪;讲常,是为了二乘人有一个依靠,二乘人却执著有一种东西叫做常。
    When the Shakyamuni Buddha talks about impermanence, it is meant for severing your craving; when speaking about permanence, it is meant for providing a means of support for the practitioners of the two vehicles, yet the practitioners of the two vehicles then attached to a kind of something that is called 'permanent'.
    释迦世尊又告诉我们:讲常乐我净,那是一种善巧方便,它要起变化,它就会无常。
    Shakyamuni Buddha tells us: when talking about Permanent, Bliss, Self and Purity, that is just a kind of skillful means, [for] when it arises transformation, then it is impermanence.
    讲经说法难道是常吗?
    Could expounding sutras and preaching the dharma have been permanence?
    它就会无常,无常当体即空,它就是常。
    It will change/be impermanent, impermanence in its essence is empty, just that is permanence.
    所以,性相本一如,何来常无常?
    Therefore, nature and appearance are fundamentally one suchness, where could there be permanence or impermanence?
    性相本一如,何来住无住?
    Nature and appearance are fundamentally one suchness, where could there have been abidance or non-abidance?
    到这个佛的境界,安上任何的知见,统统叫做错,不准你安上任何的知见,一法不立,这个才是正法。
    When reaching the state of the Buddha, if we impute a view then it is completely wrong. Imposing any kind of view is not allowed, not one dharma is established, only then is this the true Dharma.
    佛陀从来没有讲过真空出妙有,妙有真空,这一句话是中国的祖师注解所讲的。
    Buddha has never talked about true emptiness producing marvellous existence, or marvellous existence [comes] true emptiness, this is a commentary from China's patriarchs.
    佛陀也没有讲说:从假入空,从空出假,佛陀有讲:不二法门,你要搞清楚啊!
    The Buddha has also never said: from the illusory enters emptiness, from emptiness comes the illusory, the Buddha has said: Not-two dharma door [the Dharma of Non-Duality], you have to be clear about this!
    所谓不二法门,心境不二,是不是?
    What is known as the dharma door of non-duality means Mind and Situation are not two, isn't it so?
    缘起等於性空,不是缘起另外有一个性空。
    Dependent arising is equivalent to empty nature, it is not that apart from dependent arising there is another empty nature.
    缘起另外有一个性空,缘起就是随缘,另外有一个性空叫做不变。
    Or that apart from dependent arising there is another empty nature, dependent arising is going in accord with conditions, and apart from that there is an empty nature that is known to be permanent.
    是不是?那就打成二段了,这个就不是不二法门了。缘起当体即空,就是性空;生死当体即空,就是涅磐,生死涅磐无距离,菩提由来无一物。
    Isn't it the case? Then that would be splitting it into two, then this is no longer the dharma door of non-duality. Dependent arising is fundamentally empty, just that is the empty nature; birth and death are fundamentally empty, just that is Nirvana, birth and death and nirvana is without distance, Bodhi [enlightenment] is originally not one thing."
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Also see:
1) The Doctrine of No Mind by Bodhidharma (无心论)

2) Also, explanation of Bodhidharma by Dzogchen dharma teacher Abhaya Devi Yogini in Way of Bodhi
3) Some translations and commentaries of Bodhidharma's texts by John Tan can be found at Zen Patriarch Bodhidharma on the Inseparability of Awareness and Conditions


Bodhidharma is the first Ch'an/Zen Patriarch, the founder of Ch'an Buddhism in China (that later became Zen Buddhism in Japan).

A short biography:

Bodhidharma was a semi-legendary Buddhist monk who lived during the 5th or 6th century. He is traditionally credited as the transmitter of Chan Buddhism to China, and regarded as its first Chinese patriarch. Wikipedia



This is a very good text and highly recommended reading:

THE ZEN TEACHINGS OF BODHIDHARMA

Translated by Red Pine 1987

Available at: http://www.abuddhistlibrary.com/Buddhism/C%20-%20Zen/Ancestors/The%20Zen%20Teachings%20of%20Bodhidharma/The%20Zen%20Teachings%20of%20Bodhidharma/THE%20ZEN%20TEACHINGS%20OF%20BODHIDHARMA.htm

Being a Chinese myself and a Chinese reader, having read the Chinese version, I am not very satisfied with this English translation (a lot of liberties are taken, see my comments below), but still it is a nice attempt and the best we have yet in English, probably.

[6:28 PM, 11/27/2020] Soh Wei Yu: I'm reading through and listening to master hui lu explanation of bodhidharma texts
[6:28 PM, 11/27/2020] Soh Wei Yu: http://www.abuddhistlibrary.com/Buddhism/C%20-%20Zen/Ancestors/The%20Zen%20Teachings%20of%20Bodhidharma/The%20Zen%20Teachings%20of%20Bodhidharma/THE%20ZEN%20TEACHINGS%20OF%20BODHIDHARMA.htm
[6:28 PM, 11/27/2020] Soh Wei Yu: I think its very nice. Focus is on realizing mind, then all is mind and realise no mind [Soh: as in, anatta insight]
[8:31 PM, 11/28/2020] John Tan: Yes.  Good site.
[8:33 PM, 11/28/2020] Soh Wei Yu: U mean the whole website or the bodhidharma page?
[8:36 PM, 11/28/2020] John Tan: Bodhidharma


Zen Master Hui Lu's commentaries on Bodhidharma's teachings (in Chinese):

Part 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2EkJXQ6YFaA
Part 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e-jWjTpalCI


I just wrote to Mr. J today:

Right, they [consciousness and universe] are one and the same not because they both refer to some truly existing unchanging substance and substratum, but because no such 'unchanging substance and substratum' could be found other than a mere name designated upon presencing manifestation.

In the Bodhidharma text:

"At this, the disciple all at once greatly awakened and realized for the first time that there is no thing apart from mind, and no mind apart from things. All of his actions became utterly free. Having broken through the net of all doubt, he was freed of all obstruction."

--> reducing everything to mind is nondual, but anatta is also realising 'no mind apart from things'.

Bodhidharma said, "Whoever knows that the mind is a fiction and devoid of anything real knows that his own mind neither exists nor doesn’t exist. Mortals keep creating the mind, claiming it exists. And Arhats keep negating the mind, claiming it doesn’t exist. But bodhisattvas and Buddhas neither create nor negate the mind. This is what’s meant by the mind that neither exists nor doesn’t exist. The mind that neither exists nor doesn’t exist is called the Middle Way.

If you use your mind to study reality, you won’t understand either your mind or reality. If you study reality without using your mind, you’ll understand both. Those who don’t understand don’t understand understanding. And those who understand, understand not understanding. People capable of true vision know that the mind is empty. They transcend both understanding and not understanding. The absence of both understanding and not understanding is true understanding Seen with true vision, form isn’t simply form, because form depends on mind. And mind isn’t simply mind, because mind depends on form. Mind and form create and negate each other. That which exists exists in relation to that which doesn’t exist. And that which doesn’t exist doesn’t exist in relation to that which exists. This is true vision. By means of such vision nothing is seen and nothing is not seen. Such vision reaches throughout the ten directions without seeing: because nothing is seen; because not seeing is seen; because seeing isn’t seeing. What mortals see are delusions. True vision is detached from seeing. The mind and the world are opposites, and vision arises where they meet. When your mind doesn’t stir inside, the world doesn’t arise outside. When the world and the mind are both transparent, this is true vision. And such understanding is true understanding."

Bodhidharma also said, "But this mind isn’t somewhere outside the material body of four elements.Without this mind we can’t move. The body has no awareness. Like a plant or stone, the body has no nature. So how does it move? It’s the mind that moves. Language and behavior, perception and conception are all functions of the moving mind. All motion is the mind’s motion. Motion is its function. Apart from motion there’s no mind, and apart from the mind there’s no motion. But motion isn’t the mind. And the mind isn’t motion. Motion is basically mindless. And the mind is basically motionless. But motion doesn’t exist without the mind. And the mind doesn’t exist without motion. Theres no mind for motion to exist apart from, and no motion for mind to exist apart from. Motion is the mind’s function, and its function is its motion. Even so, the mind neither moves nor functions, the essence of its functioning is emptiness and emptiness is essentially motionless. Motion is the same as the mind. And the mind is essentially motionless. Hence the Sutras tell us to move without moving, to travel without traveling, to see without seeing, to laugh without laughing, to hear without hearing, to know without knowing, to be happy, without being happy, to walk without walking, to stand without standing. And the sutras say, "Go beyond language. Go beyond thought." Basically, seeing, hearing, and knowing are completely empty. Your anger, Joy, or pain is like that of puppet. You search but you won’t find a thing."

"Once you know this, walking, standing, sitting, or lying down, everything you do is Zen. To know that the mind is empty is to see the Buddha. The Buddhas of the ten directions" have no mind. To see no mind is to see the Buddha."

John Tan wrote in 2011 to someone who just realised anatta, "Next step is not to stagnate in no-self and engage wholly and completely into actions and activities then "satori" has no entry or exit; when the thunder claps, the whole of "satori" is actualized!"

It is also the same realisation expressed here,

"At that point, is the observer—awareness—other than the
observed—stillness and movement—or is it actually that stillness and
movement itself? By investigating with the gaze of your own awareness,
you come to understand that that which is investigating itself is also
no other than stillness and movement. Once this happens you will
experience lucid emptiness as the naturally luminous self-knowing
awareness. Ultimately, whether we say nature and radiance, undesirable
and antidote, observer and observed, mindfulness and thoughts, stillness
and movement, etc., you should know that the terms of each pair are no
different from one another; by receiving the blessing of the guru,
properly ascertain that they are inseparable. Ultimately, to arrive at
the expanse free of observer and observed is the realization realization
of the true meaning and the culmination of all analyses. This is called
“the view transcending concepts,” which is free of conceptualization,
or “the vajra mind view.”

"Fruition vipashyana is the correct realization of the final conviction of the nonduality of observer and observed."

Khamtrul Rinpoche III. The Royal Seal of Mahamudra: Volume One: A
Guidebook for the Realization of Coemergence: 1 (p. 242). Shambhala.

..........

p.s. my own translation from 1 year ago:





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    Bodhidharma is very clear in the 达摩祖师悟性论 (Patriarch Bodhidharma's Treatise of Realizing Nature aka The Wakeup Sermon - http://www.fodian.net/world/dmnsl-e.html ) that 色不自色,由心故色;心不自心,由色故心 - form is not form in and of itself, form is due to mind; mind is not mind in and of itself, mind is due to form. This is the two-way dependency as discussed by Greg Goode - http://awakeningtoreality.blogspot.com/.../greg-goode-on...
    Other verses in the same treatise:
    若知心是假名,无有实体,即知自家之心亦是非有,亦是非无。
    If one knows that Mind is [merely] a false name [conventional designation], without a substantial existence, is to know that one's own mind is neither existent, nor [is it] non-existent.
    若内不起心,则外不生境,境心俱净,乃名为真见
    If within there does not arise Mind, then outside there will not arise environment, environment and mind both purified [emptied], this is called true seeing.
    知心是空,名为见佛。
    Knowing Mind is empty, this is called seeing Buddha.

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    • 1y
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    Seeing Mind as mere name/designation is similar to what Nagarjuna has taught:
    Nāgārjuna's Bodhicittavivaraṇa
    39
    The cognizer perceives the cognizable;
    Without the cognizable there is no cognition;
    Therefore why do you not admit
    That neither object nor subject exists [at all]?
    40
    The mind is but a mere name;
    Apart from its name it exists as nothing;
    So view consciousness as a mere name;
    Name too has no intrinsic nature.
    41
    Either within or likewise without,
    Or somewhere in between the two,
    The conquerors have never found the mind;
    So the mind has the nature of an illusion.
    42
    The distinctions of colors and shapes,
    Or that of object and subject,
    Of male, female and the neuter –
    The mind has no such fixed forms.
    43
    In brief the Buddhas have never seen
    Nor will they ever see [such a mind];
    So how can they see it as intrinsic nature
    That which is devoid of intrinsic nature?
    44
    “Entity” is a conceptualization;
    Absence of conceptualization is emptiness;
    Where conceptualization occurs,
    How can there be emptiness?
    45
    The mind in terms of the perceived and perceiver,
    This the Tathagatas have never seen;
    Where there is the perceived and perceiver,
    There is no enlightenment.
    46
    Devoid of characteristics and origination,
    Devoid of substantive reality and transcending speech,
    Space, awakening mind and enlightenment
    Possess the characteristics of non-duality.
    47
    Those abiding in the heart of enlightenment,
    Such as the Buddhas, the great beings,
    And all the great compassionate ones
    Always understand emptiness to be like space.
    bodhicittavivarana_translation_by_thupten_jinpa [Ayurveda Healing Arts Institute - Ayurvedic Distance Learning of Medicine Buddha Healing Center]
    AYURVEDA-INSTITUTE.ORG
    bodhicittavivarana_translation_by_thupten_jinpa [Ayurveda Healing Arts Institute - Ayurvedic Distance Learning of Medicine Buddha Healing Center]
    bodhicittavivarana_translation_by_thupten_jinpa [Ayurveda Healing Arts Institute - Ayurvedic Distance Learning of Medicine Buddha Healing Center]

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  • 1y

      Soh
      , I also like Bodhidarma . Coincidentally I was reading him and I separated these two passages that somehow sounded strange to me. I am curious about how this is written in Chines. Both passages, indeed, reminds one of Advaita based ideas.
      From the Wake-Up Sermon:
      Here Bodhidarma is quoting (not criticizing): "And the Nirvana Sutra says, "All mortals have the buddha-nature. But it’s covered by darkness from which they can’t escape.Our buddha-nature is awareness: to be aware and to make others aware. To realize awareness is liberation," Everything good has awareness for its root. And from this root of awareness grow the tree of all virtues and the fruit of nirvana. Beholding the mind like this is understanding"
      and...
      "Worship means reverence and humility it means revering your real self and humbling delusions."
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      又《涅槃经》云:“一切众生悉有佛性,无明覆故,不得解脱。”佛性者,即觉性也。但自觉觉他,觉知明了,则名解脱。故知一切诸善,以觉为根;因其觉根,遂能显现诸功德树。涅槃之果德,因此而成。如是观心,可名为了。
      And The Mahāyāna Mahāparinirvāṇa Sūtra says: "All sentient beings have buddha-nature, but due to being obscured by ignorance, they are unable to be liberated." What is termed Buddha-nature is the nature of awakening/awareness. Simply to be self-awakened and awaken others, to clearly comprehend awake-knowing, is named liberation. One should know that all virtues have awareness/awakeness as its root; from this root of awakening/awareness, thereupon it is able to manifest various trees of merits. The merit of nirvana is thus accomplished. By contemplating mind as such is understanding/knowing
      (My comments: It should be noted that the 'awareness' here is actually more like the sanskrit term 'vidya' or the Tibetan term 'rigpa', which means more precisely - the knowledge of one's nature, although often incorrectly or inadequately translated as 'awareness'. Rather than simply the plain clarity aspect of our nature, the full understanding of our nature, the full maturation and ripening of vidya/awakening/rigpa includes the understanding of the *empty* and lucid nature of mind. Thus translating this as 'awareness' is a rather misleading way of translation that lends it towards Advaitic misinterpretations, and a better term would be 'knowledge' or 'awakeness' or something of that manner)
      夫礼者敬也,拜者伏也,所谓恭敬真性,屈伏无明,名为礼拜。
      礼 (courteous) is respect, 拜 is to submit/surrender (礼拜 is usually meant bow in veneration). What is known as respecting true nature, giving up/submitting/surrendering ignorance, is called "bowing in veneration".

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      • 50w
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      The term real self (真我) does not occur in Bodhidharma's text

      (Update: in the instances where the term 'real self' appears in the English translation, they are actually to be accurately translated as 'true nature' or 'true suchness' instead. 由彼染心,障真如体故。is translated as "their impure mind obscures their real self" by Red Pine, but its actual meaning is "due to defiling mind, obscuring the body of true suchness".  Bodhidharma did not hold the view of a self or atman, nor did he use those terms throughout his teachings.)
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      • 50w

    • Yea,
      Soh
      , thanks for the hassle. I thought so. I imagined it should be a misinterpretation/mistranslation of ideograms. Its a matter of coherency with the rest of the text.
      1

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      • 50w

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      Buddhi (Sanskrit: बुद्धि) is derived from the Vedic Sanskrit root Budh (बुध् ), which literally means "to wake, be awake, observe, heed, attend, learn, become aware of, to know, be conscious again".)
      ...
      Buddhi is a feminine Sanskrit noun derived from *budh, to be awake, to understand, to know. The same root is the basis for the more familiar masculine form Buddha and the abstract noun bodhi.
      1

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    • 50w


Also see:
1) The Doctrine of No Mind by Bodhidharma (无心论)

2) Also, explanation of Bodhidharma by Dzogchen dharma teacher Abhaya Devi Yogini in Way of Bodhi
3) Some translations and commentaries of Bodhidharma's texts by John Tan can be found at Zen Patriarch Bodhidharma on the Inseparability of Awareness and Conditions