Start Reading

Episode 36: Malfunctioning Labels: The most liberating of all the Buddha’s teachings are said to be his teachings on the Two Truths: Ultimate Truth and Conventional Truth. In this episode, we try to understand these two truths a little, and then put them into practice to free our...

Ratings:
0 page

Summary

The most liberating of all the Buddha’s teachings are said to be his teachings on the Two Truths: Ultimate Truth and Conventional Truth. In this episode, we try to understand these two truths a little, and then put them into practice to free our mind of something that currently causes us pain or difficulties. The two truths explain the real nature of reality, as opposed to how we normally perceive our reality. Conventional truth tells us how our conventional, day-to-day, world truly works. Conventional truth explains that all things are “mere name”, “mere label”, “mere appearance to mind”, and “mere imputation by conception”. “You” is a mere label. “I” is a mere label. “Lamp” and “sky” are mere labels. Things exist because of what we’ve labeled them. Conventional truth explains that all things are impermanent. Also, that all things arise in dependence upon causes and conditions. Ultimate truth is the other deep truth of our reality. Ultimate truth reveals that all things--you, me, lamp, sky--do not exist independently. The lamp does not exist independent of the label we give it. The lamp arises in dependence upon causes and conditions, and so it does not exist inherently. There is no inherent, fixed “you” or “me”--thank goodness! The two truths actually point to one another. They are not separate truths, but two explanations of reality. When we realize that something exists as a “mere label”, it reveals that it does not exist inherently. “I”, for example, do not exist inherently for many reasons...but certainly because there are 7 billion other people also labeling themselves as “I”!! For our mindfulness practice during the week, we try to practice conventional truth by changing the label of something. We observe a situation that currently causes us pain or difficulty, and then identify the malfunctioning label. We decide on a new label that will bring us peace of mind. We will discover how much a “mere label” changes everything. Better than a hundred years lived Without seeing the arising a passing of things Is one day lived Seeing their arising and passing.   Better than a hundred years lived Without seeing the Deathless Is one day lived Seeing the Deathless   Better than a hundred years lived Without seeing the ultimate Dharma Is only day lived Seeing the ultimate Dharma.  (115) --Buddha, The Dhammapada References Buddha, The Dhammapada. Translated by Gil Fronsdale. Shambala, 2011. pp. 29. Je Tsongkhapa. Great Treatise on the Stages of the Path to Enlightenment Volume 3. Translated by the Lamrim Chenmo Translation Committee. Joshua Cutler, Editor-in-Chief, and Guy Newlan, Editor. Snow Lion, (kindle edition), pp. 3303, 3482-3492, 4032.

Read on the Scribd mobile app

Download the free Scribd mobile app to read anytime, anywhere.