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Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

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Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby A Medic on Tue Dec 13, 2011 8:29 am

Here is a link about Chan in Tibet. I found it really interesting.

http://earlytibet.com/category/zen/
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby So-on Mann on Tue Dec 13, 2011 8:50 am

Fascinating! Thank you for sharing that! :rbow:
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby A Medic on Tue Dec 13, 2011 9:57 am

You are welcome!

:Namaste:
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby sunyavadi on Tue Dec 13, 2011 11:25 am

Exceptionally interesting blog. Thanks from me also. :heya:
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby 1handclapping on Sat Jan 07, 2012 4:42 am

This is very timely. I've been trying to research precisely the question addressed here. So Chan didn't "lose" the debate, and lived on in Tibet much longer than conventional Tibetan history would have us believe. The brief history of this I read by Turrell Wylie, one of the first Tibetan studies specialists in the US, says: "Differences between the Chinese and Indian schools [of Buddhism] lead to a formal debate at Bsam-yas [the first monastery in Tibet]. The Chinese debater lost, and the king issued a decree that only the Indian system was to be promulgated in Tibet.

Although a foreign religion, Buddhism may well have been viewed by the Tibetan monarch as a political tool for reshaping the social order and world-view of a shamanic society. Relevant here was the Tibetan acceptance of the Indian system which emphasized morality and social conformity as a means to obtain a better 'rebirth', while the rejected meditational school of Chinee Buddhism is said to have encouraged anti-social and immoral practices during T'ang times."*

All I've been able to find regarding Chan's purported "anti-social and immoral practices" is that it emphasized meditation, and the possibility of enlightenment at any moment. Chan was the original "quick path". Seems ironic that it was replaced eventually by tantra, another "quick path", that had its own issues in the morality department.

The Dunhuang manuscripts are such a rich and priceless resource! Thank you for bringing us this. :Namaste:

*Tibet's Role In Inner Asia by Wylie
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby ground on Sat Jan 07, 2012 6:46 am

Dzogchen is sometimes called "tibetan chan" :)
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby lungshan on Mon Jan 09, 2012 10:51 pm

The meditation instructions attributed to the Chan monk Heshang Moheyan in those blog posts is very reminiscent, at least to my mind, of the writings of the great Korean Soen Master Chinul. They also sound very similar to some of the things that Shunryu Suzuki says in "Zen Mind Beginners Mind".

In the case of Chinul we do know that he explicitly broke with the most extreme form of the "sudden" approach. Specifically he advocated "sudden enlightenment" combined with "gradual cultivation". The orthodox position of the Imje school (Korean Rinzai), however, continues to be the formula "sudden enlightenment and sudden cultivation".
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby lungshan on Thu Jan 12, 2012 3:48 pm

I just happened to stumble upon a blog post from 2009 by Greg Zwahlen, in which he critiques Tibetan Buddhism's approach to meditation. I think it is quite relevant to the topic of this thread:
Why I am not a “Tibetan Buddhist” (anymore)
http://blog.beliefnet.com/onecity/2009/11/why-i-am-not-a-tibetan-buddhist-anymore.html
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby ground on Thu Jan 12, 2012 8:00 pm

Polishing a stone does not transform it into a diamond :)
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby lungshan on Fri Jan 13, 2012 1:53 pm

TMingyur wrote:Polishing a stone does not transform it into a diamond :)


Actually, a diamond is just a particular type of stone, and a "diamond in the rough" needs a lot of work to turn it into a jewel.
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby ground on Fri Jan 13, 2012 9:58 pm

Nice word play. So if you think you have got such a stone and are greedy for jewel you have to go ahead and work hard :)
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby srivijaya on Sun Jan 15, 2012 9:21 pm

Interesting thread. A topic I have followed on and off for many years. Is Chan the same as Dzogchen?
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby A Medic on Mon Jan 16, 2012 1:44 am

No they are not the same. Although the articles did same Dzogchen may have been influenced by Chan. I personally no nothing about Dzogchen except for it is Tibetan.
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby ground on Mon Jan 16, 2012 6:35 am

srivijaya wrote:Interesting thread. A topic I have followed on and off for many years. Is Chan the same as Dzogchen?
:Namaste:


This depends on the practitioner. There is neither Chan nor Dzogchen in and of itself.

If you go by words they are not the same, if you abandon words and ideas they may turn out to be the same :)

Kind regards
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby srivijaya on Mon Jan 16, 2012 2:45 pm

TMingyur wrote:
If you go by words they are not the same, if you abandon words and ideas they may turn out to be the same :)

Kind regards


Many thanks
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby Will on Mon Jan 16, 2012 6:52 pm

Basically, there is not even one Buddha; there is only great wisdom. Bodhisattva Hsuan Hua
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby Barah on Mon Jan 16, 2012 8:12 pm

A Medic wrote:Here is a link about Chan in Tibet. I found it really interesting.

http://earlytibet.com/category/zen/

Thank You! You have opened a sealed doors for me. :rbow:
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby TTT on Mon Jan 16, 2012 8:18 pm

Thanks you Will.
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby srivijaya on Thu Jan 19, 2012 6:55 pm

lungshan wrote:I just happened to stumble upon a blog post from 2009 by Greg Zwahlen, in which he critiques Tibetan Buddhism's approach to meditation. I think it is quite relevant to the topic of this thread:
Why I am not a “Tibetan Buddhist” (anymore)
http://blog.beliefnet.com/onecity/2009/11/why-i-am-not-a-tibetan-buddhist-anymore.html

Hi lungshan,
An interesting blog. The following caught my eye and I feel I can strongly relate to it, as it has also been my experience:
As scholar Leah Zahler explains in Study and Practice of Meditation: Tibetan Interpretations of the Concentrations and Formless Absorptions, all Tibetan traditions practice Samatha using the breath as a means of settling the mind. But in the largest tradition, the Geluk, it was viewed as a mere precursor to the real work of analytic reasoning, and the profound potential of the practice itself was not recognized. In other traditions–particularly the Kagyu and Nyingma–the profundity of the practice was recognized, but the practice itself was sort of “kicked upstairs” by both. It was taught in the context of Mahamudra and Dzogchen Semde (respectively), and as such it was often accessible only after one had completed hundreds of thousands of repetitions of ritual practices and committed to a personal guru.

This is very true.
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Re: Interesting articles on Chan in Tibet

Postby Gregory Wonderwheel on Thu Jan 19, 2012 8:50 pm

A Medic wrote:Here is a link about Chan in Tibet. I found it really interesting.

http://earlytibet.com/category/zen/

That's a really informative series of blogs. Thanks for posting the link.

1handclapping wrote:All I've been able to find regarding Chan's purported "anti-social and immoral practices" is that it emphasized meditation, and the possibility of enlightenment at any moment.

On the "anti-social" charge against Chan, we can compare these two quotes from Blog #2
Sam van Schaik wrote:All one had to do, they claimed, was stop making distinctions, whether between virtue and nonvirtue, existence and nonexistence, or any dualities at all.

and
Sam van Schaik wrote:Heshang Moheyan (or Hwashang Mahayan to Tibetans) came to be an emblem of a particular kind of erroneous meditation: the idea that all you have to do to achieve enlightenment is shut down all mental activity.


This false equation, between transcending duality and polarity on the one hand and shutting down all mental activity on the other hand, is the reason that the non-dual awareness of prajna is called "anti-social." IF a person believes that seeing through the false opposition of the two poles of what are conventionally called "the opposites" means having a blank mind or shutting down all mental activity, THEN for sure the conclusion would be that such a meditation method is anti-social and to be avoided. But Chan/Zen has always emphasized this very same view--that shutting down all mental activity is NOT the method.

So the false equation of Chan with "blank meditation" becomes the "emblem" for a movement of political hegemony disguised as religious debate.

_/|\_
Gregory
Why you do not understand is because the three carts were provisional for former times, and because the One Vehicle is true for the present time. ~ Zen Master 6th Ancestor Huineng
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