nature "generally called Buddha nature" of all sentient beings. The madhyamika
(literally, other-empty) school of Mahayana Buddhism is based on theseteachings. The shentong school holds that, although the clear light nature of mind isultimately empty of all the cognitive and emotional obscurations of mind thattemporarily prevent one from recognizing this clear light nature of mind as one’s owntrue nature, the clear light nature of mind itself is not empty of its own nature.Those who adhere to the madhyamika
view hold thato the second turning of the wheel of dharma -- the second cycle of the Buddha’s sutrateachings -- constitutes the Buddha’s definitive teachings on the true nature of reality,o and that the teachings of the third turning of the wheel of dharma are provisional, akind of make-up course of slightly less profound teachings designed for those whocouldn’t understand the teachings of the second turning.Those who adhere to the madhyamika
view, on the other hand, hold thato the third turning of the wheel of dharma constitutes the Buddha’s definitive teachingson the nature of realityo and that the teachings of the second turning are the provisional teachings.o They maintain that anyone who succeeds in meditation in freeing themselvescompletely from the attempt to understand one’s reality conceptually will ultimatelyexperience the clear light nature of mind.o They further maintain that those of the rangtong view who fail to recognize thatultimate reality is the clear light nature of mind are still subject to a subtle form of conceptual grasping.When the non-dualistic experience of the mind’s true nature
arises, rather thanallowing it simply to experience itself, those of the
view try to look at it to see if it is permanent, indivisible, etc. This attempt to analyze, or even just observe, theexperience dualistically, however subtle, causes the experience to disappear, therebyconfirming the
view that all phenomenon are impermanent and empty of anytrue existence.The
view maintains, however, that if rangtongpas continue to meditateproperly, they will gradually purify even this subtle tendency and then the true naturewill dawn in them.The Vajrayâna view corresponds to the view of the third turning of the wheel of dharma, the
view, though it is based on the tantric teachings of the Buddhaand is not of the sutra tradition. Thus Situ Rinpoche’s commentary on The AspirationPrayer of Mahamudra, the Definitive Meaning, is based on this view.In the Vajrayâna, there are two paths "
" that are generallyfollowed simultaneously or alternately by the practitioner.