−−⏑−¦−⏑⏑¦−⏑−−¦¦−−⏑−¦−⏑⏑¦−⏑−− Upajāti (Bālā)yo niścayo hy asya parākramaś ca tejaś ca yad yā ca dayā prajāsu |
−−⏑−¦−⏑⏑¦−⏑−−¦¦⏑−⏑−¦−⏑⏑¦−⏑−−aprāpya notthāsyati tattvam eṣa tamāṁsy ahatveva sahasra-raśmiḥ || 13.59
For such is his firmness of will, and his courage,
Such is his fire, and such is his compassion for living creatures,
That this one will not rise up without having realized the truth –
Just as the thousand-rayed sun does not rise
without dispelling darkness.
without dispelling darkness.
The doings which are the root of saṁsāra thus does the ignorant one do. / The ignorant one therefore is the doer; the wise one is not, because of reality making itself known (tattva-darśanāt). //MMK26.10// In the destruction of ignorance, there is the non-coming-into-being of doings./ The destruction of ignorance, however, is because of the allowing-into-being of just this act of knowing (jñānasyāsyaiva bhāvanāt). //MMK26.11// By the destruction of this one and that one, this one and that one are discontinued. / This whole edifice of suffering is thus well and truly demolished.//MMK26.12//
Doings, Nāgārjuna thus clarifies, are a symptom of ignorance. The destruction of ignorance is synonymous with the non-coming-into-being of doings. And ignorance is destroyed by the bringing-into-being, or the cultivation or developing (bhāvana), of what Nāgārjuna refers to as jñānasyāsyaiva, “just this act of knowing” or “just this wisdom.”
The antidote to hatred, so they say, is the developing of compassion. And the antidote to delusion is the developing of absolute confidence in cause and effect.
But the antidote to the ignorance behind doings is the bringing-into-being, or the cultivation or developing, of what Nāgārjuna refers to as jñānasyāsyaiva, “just this act of knowing” or “just this wisdom.”
When Nāgārjuna writes “this” (asya) he seems to be referring back to reality being realized, or reality making itself known, or the truth outing itself. These are translations of tattva-darśana.
Typically, for a phrase of such pivotal importance, tattva-darśana is not amenable to one definitive translation that we can attach to. It is a more ambiguous term than that, covering both realizing of reality by a practitioner, and realization of reality by itself.
Whether it is a practitioner's realization of reality, or whether it is reality realizing itself, whether it is a practitioner's realization of the truth, or whether it is the truth realizing itself, what is not in doubt in Nāgārjuna's statement is that this realization is characterized by the absence of doings.
Because of tattva-darśana (realization of the truth / reality), the wise one is NOT the doer.
In today's verse, then, when the prophetic being of distinction asserts that the bodhisattva will not rise from sitting without having realized the truth, I think his prophecy is best understood on the basis of non-doing sitting practice.
It is easy for Zen masters to state the principle, and for their gullible students to believe the principle, that just sitting is the realization of reality. But if the “just sitting” of which they speak is a variation on the theme of doing, then Zen master and student alike have only been lying to themselves and to each other, mutually reinforcing a delusion.
Because my Zen master was like that, all of his students were also like that. All without exception, me included, were like that. All being like that, some annoy me more than others. One, in particular, who now comes again raising his ugly head, shamelessly peddling a trivial book, I find very distasteful. Mirror principle? Maybe.
I needn't say more. What needs to be said has already been said, very clearly and exactly, by Nāgārjuna:
The doings which are the root of saṁsāra thus does the ignorant one do. / The ignorant one therefore is the doer; the wise one is not, because of reality making itself known. //MMK26.10// In the destruction of ignorance, there is the non-coming-into-being of doings./ The destruction of ignorance, however, is because of the allowing-into-being of just this act of knowing. //MMK26.11// By the destruction of this one and that one, this one and that one are discontinued. / This whole edifice of suffering is thus well and truly demolished. //MMK26.12//
What needs to be said has been said. What remains to be demonstrated in practice, by a wise one who is not a doer, is the destruction of ignorance by the bringing-into-being of an act of knowing.
In writing these words I am conscious that one wise one who was not a doer, for example, was the Alexander teacher Marjory Barlow. And an act of knowing that she taught was, for example, to lie down on one's back with the knees bent and extend a leg and put it down on the ground.
In the bringing-into-being of such an act of knowing what is most important is work, in the direction of stopping of doings, BEFORE the actual making of the movement. This, again, requires demonstration in practice.
yaḥ (nom. sg. m.): which
niścayaḥ (nom. sg.): m. resolution , resolve, fixed intention , design , purpose , aim
asya (gen. sg.): of this one
parākramaḥ (nom. sg.): m. bold advance , attack , heroism , courage , power , strength , energy , exertion , enterprise
tejaḥ (nom. sg.): n. top of flame ; fiery energy , ardour , vital power , spirit , efficacy , essence
yad (nom. sg. n.): which
yā (nom. sg. f.): which
dayā (nom. sg.): f. sympathy , compassion , pity for (loc.)
prajāsu (loc. pl. f.): creatures, living beings
aprāpya (= abs. a-pra- √āp) not having obtained, not having realized
utthāsyati = 3rd pers. sg. future ud- √sthā: to stand up , spring up , rise , raise one's self
tattvam (acc. sg.): n. true or real state , truth , reality
eṣaḥ (nom. sg. m.): this one
tamāṁsi (acc. pl.): n. darkness , gloom (also pl.)
ahatva (= abs. a + √ han): not having dispelled
sahasra-raśmiḥ (nom. sg.): m. “thousand-rayed”; the sun