Tuesday, May 5, 2015

BUDDHACARITA 14.82: Links 5, 4, 3, 2 - Nearly There

[No Sanskrit text]

| de bźin miṅ daṅ gzugs ni yaṅ dag ’gags pa las | 
| skye mched drug po thams cad rnam par ñams par byed |
| rnam par śes pa ’gags las de dag ’gags pa ste | 
| ’du byed ’gags pa las kyaṅ de ni ’gag pa’o | 

de bzhin: thus, likewise, similarly
ming dang gzugs: name and form 
yang dag: authentically, rightly
gags: obstructed, suppressed

skye mched drug: six senses
thams cad: all, everywhere
rnam par nyams par: spoiled, doomed to death

rnam par śes: consciousness
gags: obstructed, suppressed

’du byed: formation, doing, saṁskāra ()
gags: obstructed, suppressed
kyang: even, also

EHJ's translation from the Tibetan:
82. Similarly if name-and-form is rightly suppressed, all the six organs of sense are destroyed too; and the former is suppressed through the suppression of consciousness, and the latter is suppressed also through the suppression of the factors.

82. Similarly, if psycho-physicality is well and truly ended, six senses everywhere are ended too; and the former [psycho-physicality] is ended through the ending of divided consciousness, and the latter [divided consciousness] is ended also through the ending of doings.

一切入滅盡 由於名色滅
識滅名色滅 行滅則識滅

destroy the six entrances, then will contact cease; the six entrances all destroyed, from this, moreover, names and things will cease; Knowledge destroyed, names and things will cease ; saṁskāra (names and things) destroyed, then knowledge perishes (SB)

When the six sense faculties are extinguished, contact is extinguished. The extinction of all sense faculties comes from the extinction of name-and-form. When consciousness is extinguished, name-and-form is extinguished. When formation is extinguished, consciousness is extinguished. (CW)

EHJ notes:
'The factors', ḥdu-byedsaṁskāra, here [means] the working of deeds done in a former life.

The Chinese translator, as in Kumārajīva's translation of the Lotus Sutra, translates saṁskārān as , which means action. This makes no sense to a student of Dogen, for whom the dignified behaviour of acting buddha (仏威儀 ; GYO-BUTSU-YUIGI ) is the centre of the Universe.

For me, for reasons that I have already set out at length, the only way to translate saṁskārān into English -- particularly in in view of MMK26.10 -- is as doings.

Maybe I am deluding myself, but I see the translation of  saṁskārān as doings as a relatively big deal. As I have said already, I think one reason the teaching outlined by Nāgārjuna in MMK chapter 26 has never got the attention it deserved in Japan, is that the teaching was not adequately translated into Chinese. 

punar-bhavāya saṁskārān avidyā-nivṛtas tridhā |
abhisaṁskurute yāṁs tair gatiṁ gacchati karmabhiḥ ||MMK26.1||
vijñānaṁ saṁniviśate saṁskāra-pratyayaṁ gatau |
saṁniviṣṭe 'tha vijñāne nāma-rūpaṁ niṣicyate ||2||
niṣikte nāma-rūpe tu ṣaḍāyatana-saṁbhavaḥ |
ṣaḍāyatanam āgamya saṁsparśaḥ saṁpravartate ||3||
cakṣuḥ pratītya rūpaṁ ca samanvāhāram eva ca |
nāma-rūpaṁ pratītyaivaṁ vijñānaṁ saṁpravartate ||4||
saṁnipātas trayāṇāṁ yo rūpa-vijñāna-cakṣuṣām |
sparśaḥ saḥ tasmāt sparśāc ca vedanā saṁpravartate ||5||
vedanā-pratyayā tṛṣṇā vedanārthaṁ hi tṛṣyate |
tṛṣyamāṇa upādānam upādatte catur-vidham ||6||
upādāne sati bhava upādātuḥ pravartate |
syād dhi yady anupādāno mucyeta na bhaved bhavaḥ ||7||
pañca skandhāḥ sa ca bhavaḥ bhavāj jātiḥ pravartate |
jarā-maraṇa-duḥkhādi śokāḥ sa-paridevanāḥ ||8||
daurmanasyam upāyāsā jāter etat pravartate |
kevalasyaivam etasya duḥkha-skandhasya saṁbhavaḥ ||9||
saṁsāra-mūlaṁ saṁskārān avidvān saṁskaroty ataḥ |
avidvān kārakas tasmān na vidvāṁs tattva-darśanāt ||10||
avidyāyāṁ niruddhāyāṁ saṁskārāṇām asaṁbhavaḥ |
avidyāyā nirodhas tu jñānasyāsyaiva bhāvanāt ||11||
tasya tasya nirodhena tat tan nābhipravartate |
duḥkha-skandhaḥ kevalo 'yam evaṁ samyaṅ nirudhyate ||12||
The doings that lead to yet further becoming, a person engulfed in ignorance, in the three ways, does do – and by these actions, to a new sphere in the cycle of going, does go. Divided knowing, into the new sphere of going, does seep, having doings as its causal grounds. And so with the seeping in of this divided consciousness, psycho-physicality is instilled. 
There again: With the instilling of psycho-physicality, there is the coming about of six senses. Six senses having arrived, there occurs contact. Depending on eye, on form, and on the bringing of the two together – depending in other words on psycho-physicality – divided consciousness occurs. 
When the threesome of form, consciousness and eye are combined, that is contact; and from that contact there occurs feeling. With feeling as its causal grounds, there is thirsting – because the object of feeling is thirsted after. While thirsting is going on, taking hold takes hold in the four ways. While taking hold is taking hold, the becoming arises of the taker – because becoming, if it were free of taking hold, would be liberated and would not become becoming. Five aggregates, again, are becoming itself. Out of the becoming arises birth. The suffering and suchlike of ageing and death – sorrows, accompanied by bewailing and complaining; downheartedness, troubles – all this arises out of birth. In this way there is the coming into being of this whole aggregate of suffering. 
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, on the grounds of the realization of reality. In the dispelling of ignorance, there is the non-coming-into-being of doings. At the same time, the dispelling of ignorance is on the grounds of the bringing-into-being of just this act of knowing. By the stopping of this one and that one, this one and that one no longer advance. This whole aggregate of suffering in this way is completely inhibited.

Apropos of which, a question: 

Do you see a natual link between Alexander's 'whispered ah' and Dogen's instruction
"Having readied the posture, make one complete exhalation"?
Harada roshi teaches this quite a lot, a type of ‘re-learning’ of the hara, to allow it to deflate naturally.

An answer: 
When what happens naturally is allowed to happen naturally, that is non-doing. Alexander's whispered ah is an exercise in non-doing. 

Japanese Zen, in general, whether we are talking about the mechanisms of upright posture, or about abdominal breathing, is an exercise in doing this, that and the other. 

Alexander work is NOT about learning, or re-learning, how to breathe out. Nobody needs to learn how to breathe out.  

But sad dupes who believe in the teachings of Japanese Zen roshis need to learn exactly what Nāgārjuna meant when he said, "The doings which are the root of saṁsāra, thus does the ignorant one do." 

Japanese Zen can never lead people back to the original teaching of Gautama, Aśvaghoṣa, Nāgārjuna, and Dogen. 

Why not? Because you cannot do an undoing. 

The two directions are mutually incompatible. 

Thinking that Japanese Zen might be a vehicle to arrive at the original teaching of the Buddha is like trying to arrive at John O'Groats by walking south. 
Comprehend, therefore, that suffering is doing; witness the faults impelling it forward; / Realise its stopping as non-doing; and know the path as a turning back. // SN16.42 //

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