Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Class 7 - Path of Preparation - Four Levels

Download PDF's of Class Handouts, Class NOTES and MP3 Tracks from the 7th class of Spring 2013 term held on the 24th day of April.

Geshe Kelsang Wangmo presents first of two classes on the four levels of the Mahayana Path of Preparation.

DOWNLOAD Handouts - text for Class 7

2013 Spring Handout 9 - Mahayana Path of Accumulation, cont.:  Middling & Great levels.  Chart - three levels of Path of Accumulation.  Mahayana Path of Preparation:  Four levels, each with three subdivisions (Small, Middling, Great) introduction.

2013 Spring Handout 10 - Mahayana Path of Preparation's Four Levels, cont.:  1) Heat, 2) Peak, 3) Forbearance, 4) Supreme Dharma.  Chart:  Mundane, Arya & Supramundane Paths.  Four types of Misperceptions re Four types of Conceptual Consciousnesses that grasp at True Existence.

ALL SPRING 2013 PDF Handouts are HERE.

Track 1 - Oral Quiz Class to Review Path of Accumulation.

Mahayana Path of Preparation (སྦྱོར་ལམ་) - HANDOUT 9

Meditative Stabilization that is a Union of Calm Abiding and Special Insight conceptually realizing Emptiness -- the First Moment of the Path of Preparation.

Four Levels of the Mahayana Path of Preparation:
• Heat
• Peak
• Forbearance
• Supreme Dharma

Track 2 - Meaning of Dualistic Appearance to a conceptual mental consciousness.
  • Generic / Mental Images appear to conceptual mental consciousnesses, e.g., pop song playing over and over in your head; it is not a ‘sound’ but an image of a sound.
  • All phenomena are completely divisible into Conventional or Ultimate Truths.
  • A Conventional Truth always appears to ordinary beings (due to imprints of ignorance) as inherently / truly existent.
Three Ways in which Conceptual Consciousness Realizing Emptiness is a Dualistic Mind:
  1. That mind realizing Emptiness, the lack of true existence, does so by means of a generic image, which appears truly existent.
  2. That mind’s generic representation of Emptiness (Ultimate Truth) is a Conventional Truth.
  3. That mind always experiences subject/object duality: a sense of the subject (the mind) being here and its object (Emptiness) being there.
Summary of three appearances that characterize a conceptual mind realizing Emptiness as a dualistic mind:

• The appearance of inherent existent.
• The appearance of a conventional truth (i.e., the generic image of Emptiness).
• The appearance of subject and object being separate (the mind is here and the object is over there).

To the mind directly realizing Emptiness, none of those three dualities appear.

Appearances of inherent existence to conceptual mind realizing Emptiness:
• The generic image appears to be inherently existent.
• Emptiness, itself, appears to be inherently existent.
• The appearance of subject and object appear to be inherently different.

Method of Directly/Incontrovertibly Realizing Manifest & Slightly Hidden Phenomena is Reversed

Heat (དྲོད་) level - Path of Preparation - HANDOUT 10

  Pervasion between Intellectually Acquired Afflictive Obstructions and Intellectually Acquired Afflictions.

Peak (རྩེ་མོ་) level - Path of Preparation

Forbearance (བཟོད་པ་) level - Path of Preparation – Overcomes Fear of Emptiness

Track 3 - Supreme Dharma (ཆོས་མཆོག་) level - Path of Preparation –

Great Supreme Dharma level of the Path of Preparation is the highest level of the Ordinary Mahayana Paths.
Note: In Class 8, Geshe Wangmo announced that the English translations “Mundane” and “Supramundane” used to describe two types of Paths in Class 7 and its Handouts, would be changed to “Ordinary” and “Superior” as mundane is generally used as translation in another context.
  • Ordinary Paths – Paths of Accumulation and Preparation.  
  • Superior (Arya) Paths – Paths of Seeing, Meditation and No More Learning. Supreme Dharma
Characteristics of the Four Levels of Mahayana Path of Preparation:

A.  Conceptual Realization of Emptiness in dependence upon a union of calm abiding and special insight, which is clear (due to being a calm abiding meditation, free of excitement and dullness).

B.  Four Misconceptions are overcome on Path of Preparation – INTRODUCTION:

On each level of the Path of Preparation, a category of misconceptions concerning the Emptiness of various phenomena is overcome. The terminology describing these different misconceptions may be confusingly unfamiliar (and will be explained more completely in Class 8).

These four ignorant minds are conceptions that apprehend four types of phenomena to be truly existent.

Those four types of phenomena that are mistakenly apprehended as existing truly are:
  1. ‘thoroughly afflicted phenomena being objects of experience’ 
  2.  ‘completely pure phenomena being objects of experience’
  3.  ‘perceivers of substantial existence being experiencers’ 
  4.  ‘perceivers of imputed existence being experiencers’
Misconceptions of true existence regarding some Phenomena are easier to overcome than regarding other types of Phenomena:

  We perceive all phenomena and all of our experience of phenomena as inherently existent. When we analyze how phenomena actually lack true existence, the lack of true existence of anger is easier to understand than the lack of true existence of love; the lack of true existence of table is easier to grasp than the Emptiness of the mind.

  Similarly, the easier to overcome of the Four Misconceptions that are overcome on the Path of Preparation, are overcome in succession of difficulty, one per level.

Class Quiz - Review of Path of Preparation

NOTES - Class 7 (April 24) rough draft transcript of class offered for what it's worth.  

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This is the 7th class of the Spring 2013 term the Perfection of Wisdom course
which addresses 8th-10th sub-topics of the 2nd Topic
(Mahayana Practice Instructions) of Chapter 1 of Maitreya's
Ornament for Clear Realizations - Abhisamayalamkara.

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