Wednesday, June 5, 2013

What Conditions Allow For Apparent Subjectivity?

Wha Tsin Aname:
What are the conditions, dependently arisen, that allow for apparent subjectivity?
Like ·  · Follow Post · February 26 at 2:44pm via mobile
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Albert Hong: Ignorance, which is the assumption and compulsion for thingness.
February 26 at 2:51pm via mobile · Like

Mr. J.C.: Fabrication or thought. Subjectivity is always just an assumption or abstract model and only arises as such. The only difference between subjectivity and other thought-created models such as "ball" or "laptop" is that subjectivity can hide in some very sneaky places beyond just "I". It can hide in positions, ideals or can be simply implied in relation to other things.
February 26 at 2:52pm · Like

Mr. J.C.: Mmmm....yummy thingness.
February 26 at 2:53pm · Like

Albert Hong: Intentions, attention, volition, nothingness, spaciousness, etc.
February 26 at 2:57pm via mobile · Like · 1

Wha Tsin Aname: So all of these things simply arise as a consequence of the totality of Reality manifesting itself as every moment. It's the most probable thing in Reality (as Reality) at that "moment".

Just continuing to tighten grip on how all things perceived, including the sense of subjectivity, are dependent upon the totality of all of existence. Which is totally empty. 

Self is transparent because there is no actual self, only this self-like idea that arises. 

So if the self thought is ignored, does the center just slowly disintegrate? Does attention vanish as well?

Attention feels the closest.
February 26 at 3:07pm via mobile · Like

Wha Tsin Aname: And what of the thought that ignores the self-thought?
February 26 at 3:08pm via mobile · Like

Albert Hong: Thought has nothing to do with anything.
February 26 at 3:26pm via mobile · Like

Wha Tsin Aname: Is not subjectivity only the thought that thinks it..?
February 26 at 3:27pm via mobile · Like

Albert Hong: Its also any "thing" that one attaches too
February 26 at 3:28pm via mobile · Like · 1

Albert Hong: So it could be attention itself
February 26 at 3:28pm via mobile · Like

Albert Hong: Or how about thr intention to pay attention
February 26 at 3:29pm via mobile · Like

Wha Tsin Aname: So there is implied subjectivity within any appointment of 'thing-hood'.

So the step away from what is towards any "thing", in that stride subjectivity is born?
February 26 at 3:33pm via mobile · Like

Greg Goode: Good question. Buddhism gives a lot of weight to the previous thoughts, intentions, the teachings one imbibes, one's overall conditioning, and the emptiness of everything, which is what allows things to move and grow and change. That's a pretty big cluster of conditions.

You ask another good question too:

"So if the self thought is ignored, does the center just slowly disintegrate? Does attention vanish as well?"

Buddhist meditation doesn't ignore the self-thought - if it did, then being in a coma or deep sleep would be liberation. Instead, the idea is to see through the self-thought. 

One of my favorite emptiness books has a chapter entitled "Withdrawal Is Not Sufficient." Rather than turning away from the self-thought, the idea is to refute its purported object, to show that the thought and the word don't pinpoint anything. There is nothing that answers to the word, "self." Not even the self-thought is the self. There isn't anything or any combination of things that = the self. 

So the idea in Buddhism is to see that the self isn't anything particular, nothing that can be named or pointed to or thought or felt. And at the same time, being pragmatically able to say stuff like, "Honey, I'm going to the store. Be back in half an hour!"
February 26 at 3:35pm · Edited · Like · 2

Mr. J.C.: Well, one thing that helps get rid of a big ball of subjectivity is not having an assumption that a subject exists. 

If you deeply assume that everything is always already non-dual, then a whole lot of subjectivity simply fails to be assumed.
February 26 at 3:37pm · Like · 1

Wha Tsin Aname: Well put Justin. I believe that is what is occurring.
February 26 at 3:38pm via mobile · Like

Wha Tsin Aname: Greg, in response to your last paragraph: That sort of pragmatism points to a relationship with the self-thought that is essentially singularly utilitarian. Is that accurate?
February 26 at 3:42pm via mobile · Like

Greg Goode: Wha , Well, not exactly utilitarian, because the self-thought has no useful purpose to serve. It sort of gets liberated, lightened and freed up. It fades away, having nothing to do.

Realizing the emptiness of the self (or of anything else) is not a one-shot deal. It's not a single insight and then you hang out a shingle and give satsang. It becomes a richer and richer, more beautiful and loving way of life, where there's an integration of thought, speech, activity and movment, interaction with other beings and the world. A Western, non-Buddhist way to think about it might be, the self becomes bo more than a convenient, conventional bit of shorthand for a web of relations. Social, emotional, somatic, perceptual, linguistic - relations of all kinds. So we conveniently and arbitrarily carve out a portion and go with this as a conventional self. It's a convenient designation. 

Here's the thing - a discrete self-thought isn't even required for all that to work. If there is a self-thought, then having realized emptiness, you know that the thought is not referential. It doesn't succeed in pointing to anything. The more this is seen, the less weight the thought has. It simply has no more work to do.
February 26 at 9:58pm · Edited · Like · 5

Wha Tsin Aname: The self-thought is not referential. And it continues to loose weight. Noticeably. I commented on it in my writing this morning. I seem to be claiming less and less. 

I'm still removing assumptive layers from the idea of 'attention'.

It feels very close. BUT, I saw this morning, while driving, that attention is simply an artifact of vision. Attention, acoustically, is an artifact of sound. And so forth. The eye has the ability to focus, accordance with dependent origination, is that the condition that gives rise to the illusion of "one who focuses"? And then ultimately to one who is paying attention to what is being focused upon?

There is only focusing. Visually, acoustically..and so forth. They are dependent upon infinite factors and conditions.
February 27 at 5:25pm via mobile · Like

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