"You've yet to realize the thought of the Able
As long as two ideas seem to you disparate:
The appearance of things—infallible interdependence; And emptiness—beyond taking any position.
At some point they no longer alternate, come together; Just seeing that interdependence never fails
Brings realization that destroys how you hold to objects, And then your analysis with view is complete."
Je Tsongkapa, "The Three Principle Paths"
Originally shared by +****
Ditching conventional truth.
Since I start participating actively in G+ Buddhist communities, it is quite often when someone (specially among Zen practitioners) comes up with ultimate concepts, like the very typical questions "who is the one is talking?" "there is no (insert here whatever, from selves to objects)", etc.
Sometimes is very ok to talk in ultimate terms, but only when the conversation is about ultimate or is used to teach something and there is no other way. More than often is used as a fallacy, instead of engage into the conversation´s subject or when someone is in trouble answering, switching to an ultimate question to invalidate any "personal" mentions.
Talking in ultimate terms is not the middle way. But in case someone doesn´t know what is ultimate and conventional truths, here a briefing:
The Buddhist doctrine of the two truths differentiates between two levels of truth (Sanskrit: satya) in Buddhist discourse: relative or commonsensical truth, and absolute or ultimate truth.
The doctrine was first expressed in complete form by Nāgārjuna.
The two truths doctrine states that there is:
Relative or common-sense truth (Sanskrit samvṛtisatya, Pāli sammuti sacca), which describes our daily experience of a concrete world, and
Ultimate truth (Sanskrit, paramārthasatya, Pāli paramattha sacca), which describes the ultimate reality as sunyata, empty of concrete and inherent characteristics.
The Sanskrit term for relative, "samvṛti", also implies false, hidden, concealed, or obstructed, as well as other nuanced concepts.
The conventional truth may be interpreted as "obscurative truth" or "that which obscures the true nature" as a result. It is constituted by the appearances of mistaken awareness. Conventional truth would be the appearance that includes a duality of apprehender and apprehended, and objects perceived within that. Ultimate truths, are phenomena free from the duality of apprehender and apprehended.
The Lankavatara sutra is quite explicit in assuming two forms of knowledge: the one for grasping the absolute or entering into the realm of Mind-only, and the other for understanding existence in its dual aspect in which logic prevails and the Vijnanas are active. The latter is designated Discrimination (vikalpa) in the Lanka and the former transcendental wisdom or knowledge (prajna). To distinguish these two forms of knowledge is most essential in Buddhist philosophy.
But even that if ultimate truth is the ultimate reality, which seeing trough it leads to the end of suffering, conventional truth is necessary, Nagarjuna said:
"Without a foundation in the conventional truth,
The significance of the ultimate cannot be taught.
Without understanding the significance of the ultimate,
Liberation is not achieved."
Conventional truth is necessary in order to proceed toward enlightenment—and to practice compassion—but its value is not intrinsic. Even though is necessary. At the end of the day, all language implies the use of conventional meanings, knowing the ultimate reality (sunyata) does not mean conventional concepts (using "I", "you", etc.) should be discarded from everyday life.
An enlightened being is not a mute being (and yes, in before someone of the "persons" I´m talking about points it out, in the ultimate truth there is not even a being or "enlightened being", but this article is written using conventional terms! 😛 )
Always talking in ultimate terms outside the right circumstances, is an extreme, is not the middle way, and can be quite annoying. 🙂