concepts and actual

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Posted by Boom Cat ( on May 10, 2000 at 00:03:09:

namo buddhaya, namo dharmaya, namo sanghaya! (x3)

according to buddhist psychology, the mind is made up by consciousnesses (there are 89 types) and mental constituents (52 types). the mind ( four aggregates) and materiality (28 types) together are the five aggregates.

these are called the ultimates or the ultimate realities because they can be observed and experienced directly (the word "ultimate" here has a meaning slightly different from that we use in the western sense, it doesn't suggest that these ultimates are something like the "absolute"). everything else is only a concept/name/label--we can only know/experience these things on the conceptual level, e.g. a man, a woman, the floor...and so on.

the buddha stated very clear that beside the five aggregates there is nothing else that can be called a soul, an independent self or anything similiar to that.

in some culture, the term "conciousness" is used in place of "soul". but if we take it literally and think that there's an independent substance called a consciousness or a soul, it's wrong. here, again, consciousness is a concept.

when taking up a meditation practice, it is essential that one be able to make a proper differentiation between paramattha (ultimate realities) and pannatti (concepts, ideas, terms, convention truths...etc), otherwise one will unknowingly fall into the trap of meditating on the conceptual level. It is only on the basis of the knowledge of the ultimates that wisdom can be obtained, one has to penetrate into the ultimates, as insight grows, the yogi will actually see the three charactistics, i.e. anicca, dukkha, anatta; meditating on anicca, dukkha, anatta on the conceptual level cannot produce actual realizations of these qualities.

om mani pade hum, om mani pade hum, om mani pade hum, om mani pade hum, om mani pade hum, om mani pade hum, om mani pade hum!

may all beings be always happy and be free from the causes of suffering. may all who practice the dharma soon go beyond concepts and reach the actual.

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