Author Topic: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...  (Read 2562 times)

Offline NepalianBuddhist

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Re: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...
« Reply #15 on: September 27, 2013, 05:23:51 pm »
Wesley, maybe it seems to you that more time has passed, but you were still posting at Dharma Wheel in August of 2012.

Do you do the Zen meditation practice?...

Offline Dharmakara

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Re: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...
« Reply #16 on: September 27, 2013, 05:33:32 pm »
Actually, these days I focus more on jingxíng (Jp. kyogyo), walking meditation.

Offline NepalianBuddhist

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Re: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...
« Reply #17 on: October 01, 2013, 12:23:47 pm »
Actually, these days I focus more on jingxíng (Jp. kyogyo), walking meditation.

Is it like meditation in the consciousness, but while you're walking?...
« Last Edit: October 01, 2013, 12:25:35 pm by Wesley1982, Reason: grammar »

Offline Dharmakara

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Re: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...
« Reply #18 on: October 01, 2013, 12:33:16 pm »
Yes, that would be a good description, still being conscious of your breath, whether long or short, ect, but also self-inquiry --- here's an article you might like:

http://happinessbeyondthought.blogspot.com/2013/06/nondual-self-inquiry-meditation-while.html
« Last Edit: October 01, 2013, 12:35:06 pm by incognito »

Offline NepalianBuddhist

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Re: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...
« Reply #19 on: October 08, 2013, 07:29:36 pm »
Wesley, maybe it seems to you that more time has passed, but you were still posting at Dharma Wheel in August of 2012.

What forms the basis of tradition in the Buddhist world? For example, Tibetan tradition as compared to Pure Land How are they different etc.


Offline Dharmakara

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Re: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...
« Reply #20 on: October 08, 2013, 07:50:56 pm »
It seems that the general concensus is that these variations are related to Buddhism as it spread into other countries, where some of the pre-existing traditions were merged into it --- the World Buddhist Sangha Council (WBSC) considers such to be external forms and expressions, that they shouldn't be confused with the essential teachings of the Buddha.

For example, it would be hard to fanthom what the Tibetan tradition might have become if Bon did not exist, no different than Ch'an when it comes Taoism --- of course, there's arguments of what came first, Tibetan Buddhism or Bon, but the scholars aren't in agreement either.

I tend to take the position that Buddhism was enriched in such encounters as it spread North and South, embracing other customs and traditions that were deemed equally appropriate.

« Last Edit: October 08, 2013, 07:53:36 pm by Dharmakara, Reason: spelling »

Offline Dharmakara

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Re: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...
« Reply #21 on: October 08, 2013, 09:21:00 pm »
Wesley, you might find this an interesting read:

The Emergence of Pure Land Buddhism
http://www.sunypress.edu/pdf/53227.pdf

Offline PorkChop

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Re: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...
« Reply #22 on: October 10, 2013, 01:38:35 am »
Wesley, you might find this an interesting read:

The Emergence of Pure Land Buddhism
http://www.sunypress.edu/pdf/53227.pdf


I knew I recognized Julian Pas' "Visions of Sukhavati"... pretty polemical little book there.
Here's a nice critique on some points Julian Pas may have missed, from Jerome Ducor:
Journal of the International Association of Buddhist Studies Vol 22, No 1, 1999
At the very least, he makes plain an anti-Japanese bias in Pas' work.

I understand that Pas' end conclusions are that there are no reasons to think that Pure Land thought came from outside of the Indian tradition, but all the stops he makes along the way to that rather minor summation lend way too much credence to the converse view. For a breakdown of the evolution of Pure Land thought, Nattier's work is pretty much the go-to these days:The Indian Roots of Pure Land Buddhism: Insights from the Oldest Chinese Versions of the Larger Sukhåvat∆vy¥ha There was even a conference on the topic of the roots of Pure Land this year.  I've read accounts of & personally talked with Theravadans that consider Pure Land practice consistent with the Theravada practice of buddhanussati found in the Visuddhimagga. So no need to assume it comes from elsewhere. This is also pretty consistent with Dr. David Brazier's take on the topic.

If you want to compare Pure Land practice to Tibetan practice, you may want to look at the Tibetan practice of Yidams.
In fact, it'd be hard not to draw a direct line of influence from the Pure Land sutra called the Pratyutpanna Samadhi Sutra to the Tibetan practice of Yidams. The 2 practices are not identical, but extremely similar.

As far as the relationship between Bon and Buddhism, according to Berzin, the influence has been a two-way street, to the point that Bon has adopted much of Buddhist practice. Berzin's article does a great job of giving examples of influences going both ways.

Quote from: Dharmakara
I tend to take the position that Buddhism was enriched in such encounters as it spread North and South, embracing other customs and traditions that were deemed equally appropriate.

:jinsyx: 100% agree :jinsyx:

Offline Lobster

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Re: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...
« Reply #23 on: October 10, 2013, 02:40:18 am »
Does Buddha, when examined by a doctor, have 36 marks of existence on his body?...


http://www.berzinarchives.com/web/en/archives/sutra/level2_lamrim/initial_scope/safe_direction/thirty_excellent_signs_major_marks_.html

No.

Shakyamuni Buddha was not a mutant.
Mutants can become enlightened if they are sentient.  :namaste:

Offline Dharmakara

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Re: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...
« Reply #24 on: October 10, 2013, 07:36:01 am »
Wesley, you might find this an interesting read:

The Emergence of Pure Land Buddhism
http://www.sunypress.edu/pdf/53227.pdf


I knew I recognized Julian Pas' "Visions of Sukhavati"... pretty polemical little book there.
Here's a nice critique on some points Julian Pas may have missed, from Jerome Ducor:
Journal of the International Association of Buddhist Studies Vol 22, No 1, 1999
At the very least, he makes plain an anti-Japanese bias in Pas' work.

I understand that Pas' end conclusions are that there are no reasons to think that Pure Land thought came from outside of the Indian tradition, but all the stops he makes along the way to that rather minor summation lend way too much credence to the converse view. For a breakdown of the evolution of Pure Land thought, Nattier's work is pretty much the go-to these days:The Indian Roots of Pure Land Buddhism: Insights from the Oldest Chinese Versions of the Larger Sukhåvat∆vy¥ha There was even a conference on the topic of the roots of Pure Land this year.  I've read accounts of & personally talked with Theravadans that consider Pure Land practice consistent with the Theravada practice of buddhanussati found in the Visuddhimagga. So no need to assume it comes from elsewhere. This is also pretty consistent with Dr. David Brazier's take on the topic.

If you want to compare Pure Land practice to Tibetan practice, you may want to look at the Tibetan practice of Yidams.
In fact, it'd be hard not to draw a direct line of influence from the Pure Land sutra called the Pratyutpanna Samadhi Sutra to the Tibetan practice of Yidams. The 2 practices are not identical, but extremely similar.

As far as the relationship between Bon and Buddhism, according to Berzin, the influence has been a two-way street, to the point that Bon has adopted much of Buddhist practice. Berzin's article does a great job of giving examples of influences going both ways.



Like I said, scholars aren't in agreement, so it's more than likely that we won't be either.
« Last Edit: October 10, 2013, 07:37:47 am by Dharmakara »

Offline PorkChop

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Re: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...
« Reply #25 on: October 10, 2013, 03:23:18 pm »
Good point, not everyone's going to agree.
Just pointing out that the book quoted includes a complete dismissal of an entire tradition with obvious signs of not having read that tradition's source material.

As far as the Tantra-Pure Land link, obviously Shingon's Kakuban felt that there was some continuity. He added distinctly Pure Land practices & visualizations to Shingon before Japan ever had separate, popular Pure Land schools.

Offline Dharmakara

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Re: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...
« Reply #26 on: October 10, 2013, 04:13:22 pm »
I believe it might be a bit presumptous to believe that the author had never read the source material --- such arguments are often nothing more than informal fallacy, sometimes called circular reasoning, where the person assumes the conclusion right from the beginning.

The problem with such a statement is that unless you were in the author's back pocket or staring over their shoulder, how could you (or anyone else) know for sure what they've read and what they haven't?

Of course, it should be noted the practitioners of any given tradition would also have a vested interested in setting aside any position of scholarship that isn't in agreement with its own traditions --- it happens so frequently that I prefer acacdemic research over that of Buddhist institutions, but this is a personal choice, being more acacdemic orientated myself.

Offline NepalianBuddhist

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Re: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...
« Reply #27 on: October 10, 2013, 04:32:50 pm »
Wesley, you might find this an interesting read:

The Emergence of Pure Land Buddhism
http://www.sunypress.edu/pdf/53227.pdf


My experience of Buddha and the Buddhist religion has been largely based on experientialism and personal experience instead of reliance on an academic text.

Offline Dharmakara

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Re: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...
« Reply #28 on: October 10, 2013, 05:05:52 pm »
Very true, but sometimes the academic aspect can be useful --- more often than not there's a tendency to approach academic research with the attitude that "ignorance is bliss", that we're somehow better off before hand, better to remain in the dark.

IMO it's only a matter of time before Buddhism (as an institution) will have to come to terms with academic research, where the alternative would be the equivalent of sticking our heads in the sand --- such alternative might work for some people, but certainly not all.


Offline PorkChop

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Re: Is the Pure Land related to generation of Bodhicitta in the mind?...
« Reply #29 on: October 10, 2013, 09:03:44 pm »
I don't want to be argumentative. If you think I'm trying to tow a party line, that's not the case. But if you think that book is based on complete translations by the author, based on references to translations made after 1990 (most being from the 70s or earlier), or based on an un-biased view (from an author who specializes in post WW2 Taiwan) then I have to take issue, my references (and just reading the book) have shown that this is clearly not the case.

If the moderator is posting quotes (which clearly have some issues) from a book singling out a single Pure Land school (which is very influential in the US & abroad), what does that say to members of this forum? If that same book/quotes make claims that clearly cast into doubt the veracity of the Pure Land path as a whole (making rather weak claims of legitimacy of Indian origin, while appearing to legitimize counter claims) what does that say to the Pure Land forum? Especially when said moderator bears the name of the most important Bodhisattva in the Pure Land school...

I posted links to people whom academia takes seriously. If u think by doing so I'm being argumentative or anti-academic, I can't really do much about it. If I loosely quote Theravadans like Bhikku Bodhi who claim that the Pure Land schools are pretty consistent with the earliest stratas of suttas (sutta nipata), consistent with buddhanussati, and that make the claim that a Buddha (Amitabha) is a valid Kasina (object of meditation), but am still accused of being anti-academic, what can I really do?
 
I have not seen anything in Shinrans writings that would prevent one from becoming a sotapanna nor an anagamin. ie. the goals of the householder path from the earliest strata of the Buddhist literature. Is it really worth posting quotes from a book that would caste doubt on such a path?

What do we know of the original householder path from the earliest strata of suttas? They felt grateful to the people in their lives (siggalovada sutta), they venerated Buddha (an enlightened one), they were mindful (of the Buddha, Dhamma, Sangha, Devas- mahaanaama sutta), they walked in reverent circles around stupas (housings of holy remains), they had faith in the teachings of the Buddha, they aspired to birth in a Pure Abode (suddhavassa), and they could be forgiven of transgressions (sarakaani sutta). Can we definitively say Shinran and his followers do not do the same (of course with a statue of Amida in place of a valid stupa)?

 


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