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中論觀如來品第二十二 Examination of Tathagata

Posted by gustav 
中論觀如來品第二十二 Examination of Tathagata

分類標籤: 中觀
T30n1564_p0029c04(00)║    龍樹菩薩造梵志青目釋
T30n1564_p0029c05(00)║    姚秦三藏鳩摩羅什譯
T30n1564_p0029c06(00)║  觀如來品第二十二(十六偈)
-取!What does this exactly mean? If translated as “grasp,” this is an ontological explanation; if “employ,” this is an epistemological explanation.
T30n1564_p0029c10(00)║ 非陰不離陰  此彼不相在
T30n1564_p0029c11(00)║ 如來不有陰  何處有如來
--Not the constituents, not different from the constituents, the constituents are not in him, and he is not in them. A tathagata is not possessed of a constituent; in this, which is a tathagata?
--If tathāgataḥ is real, it is only possible when the tathāgataḥ (nom. sg.) T and the five skandhāḥ (pl./ skandhā sg./ skandhas) S are in one of the following relations:
(1)T is S
(2)T is distinct away from S
(3)S is in T
(4)T is in S
(5)T is possessed of S
Now, Nāgārjuna has refuted all of the possibilities, it is then only possible that the premise is not acceptible and that tathāgataḥ isn't real.
--青目's explanation:
(1)is not acceptable, because if so, tathāgataḥ would be as “real” as empirical objects which “would be born and would die.” If tathāgataḥ were as such, it contradicts the eight denials. Besides, the employer 受者 and the employed 受法 are one and the same, which we find implausible here.
--Critique: However, saying tathāgataḥ is the five skandhāḥ does not necessarily mean the former is the product of the latter. Tathāgataḥ could yet be the five skandhāḥ in the sense that (a- transcendental reading) the former is the transcendental subject which makes the empirical objects fit the characteristics of possessing the aspects of the latter, so that it can be reasonable that the former could be so transcendentally idealized; (b-absolute reading) the former is an “external” cause of the latter (which is denied in (2)) that the cause makes possible the effect from which five skandhāḥ can be empirically distinguished.
--Critique: Besides, why not the employer and the employed cannot be one and the same, if, resonated with Dignāga's svasamvitti theory, the “resulting cognition (pramāṇaphala)” and the “means of cognition (pramāṇa)” should not be separated as the realists believe. Is exactly at this very point that Madhyamika find Dignāga's theory non-acceptable? But, Candrakirti's criticism that if Dignāga's theory is accepted then there would be infinite regress problem regarding the svasamvitti's pre-existence, is not plausible if we explain away the realist's paralogism regarding the pramāṇa-pramāṇaphala distinction... How would Nāgārjuna himself response to the question here?
--青目's explanation:
(2) is not acceptable, because if so, the independent tathāgataḥ would be free of birth-death, and then tathāgataḥ would be external 常, which contradicts the eight denials.
Besides, if there were such independent tathāgataḥ, the functioning of the five senses could not result in as such, as known to the subject (tathāgataḥ).
--Critique: How should we treat the eight denials? Are they the end of the argument or the beginning of the argument?
--Suggest: In 深觀、波若波羅蜜, it is intuited that the ultimate reality is best conventionally characterized as such, and hence the eight denials need argued for conventionally, yet the argument can be made only with the ultimate, a priori, intuition to “consult with” – a reconstruction from Kant's idea of pure intuition.
--Reflection: Eight denials are all conventional characterization. People who has observed the intuitive source of them can both ultimately and conventionally “grasp” the characterization; people who has not observed the intuitive source of them can only conventionally grasp it. That's why Buddha's words is a practical teach!
--Critique: the argument 青目 offers here can only rule out the absolute reading (b) above, for a transcendental tathāgataḥ is not independent from the five skandhāḥ. The transcendental reading still survives.
--Critique: Besides, if we say, further tuned transcendental reading, that the tathāgataḥ could be the five skandhāḥ in the sense that both terms are just names 假名 for in ultimate truth, tathāgataḥ and skandhāḥ be not reasonable at all: we have conventional, empirical experience as such, which can be characterized with the the skandhāḥ theory and hence it can be postulated that there might reasonably be tathāgataḥ. But the characterization and the postulation above can only be valid in relation to experience; hence, the transcendental reading is tuned to tone with the denial of “tathāgataḥ being the five skandhāḥ.”
青目's explanation:
(4)are not acceptable, for, by applying the method 一異 in the denial 不一不異, it is required that tathāgataḥ and the five skandhāḥ are different so that the former could be the container of the latter or vise versa; and if the former and the latter are different, it contradicts the denial 不常.
(5)Is not acceptable, for, by applying the method 一異 in the denial 不一不異 as well, it is required that tathāgataḥ and the five skandhāḥ are different so that the former could be the possessor of the latter; and if so, it also contradicts the denial 不常.
--Critique: Again, how should we treat the eight denials?
--Summary: With the absolute reading of the tathāgataḥ-skandhāḥ problem, it is then said all the five postulations are wrong; with the reading bearing the idea that tathāgataḥ is not real (our conventional demand for reality always targets the ultimate reality, based upon which the reality as such should be denied so that the ultimate reality and the conventional reality can both be preserved)*, similarly, with the transcendental reading, it just does not matter at all whether you hold the five postulations or not.
*The real in “tathāgataḥ is not real” is paralgic for what we can say ever of the real and what is demanded in the sentence is not mutually qualified. Hence, the denial of such “reality” can break the paralogism embedded: denying the absolute, cognition-free, skandhāḥ-free reality of tathāgataḥ is actually the refuse to such a demand from conventional realm to the ultimate realm; without such a crossover, it just does not matter with the five postulations.

T30n1564_p0030a05(00)║ 陰合有如來  則無有自性
T30n1564_p0030a06(00)║ 若無有自性  云何因他有
--If a buddha [exists] by means of the constituents, he does not exist with regard to self-nature. And if he does not exist with regard to self-nature, how can he with regard to other-nature.
--If a buddha's existence “depends” on the coordinated operation of skandhāḥ, then such an existence is not with svabhava. Without svabhava equals without his-nature.
--Critique: The baseline is, the existence of a buddha is free of svabhava; based on this, the verse can be read that the existence of a buddha indeed depends on the coordinated operation of skandhāḥ and hence has no svabhava and hence no his-nature. Then, perhaps it is one option to say that the existence of a buddha “depends” on the coordinated operation of skandhāḥ. But here comes a question: if this verse fundamentally contradict with the first verse? Is such a dependence not one of the five possibilities, say, T is S, then the existence becomes a birth-death matter, empirical, post-cognition?
T30n1564_p0030a13(00)║ 法若因他生  是即為非我
T30n1564_p0030a14(00)║ 若法非我者  云何是如來
--It is plausible to call he who is independent on other-nature “non-self”; And he who is non-self, then how will he be the tathagata?
--Critique: the sayings of the above two verses are puzzling, for if the sayings are his stand, then Nāgārjuna seems to contradict his own theory of the denial of svabhava. It is either Nāgārjuna's stand or not. But on this level of decision between either-or, it is only revealed that the it just does not work to think of buddha's existence in terms of “nature性” which is always a posteriori, post-cognition. Or it is neither Nāgārjuna's stand nor not. On this level, his stand can at last be revealed: away from the idea of nature 性見, one can begin to “talk about” tathāgataḥ.
--青目's explanation: Just as the five fingers make a fist possible for the latter depends on the former's certain function, the five skandhāḥ make a self possible. What is made possible in the above analogy has no self-existence, for it “depends” on others. Then it is asked what a buddha's existence can be?
--Critique: This verse is a response to the former verse's left-over question: a buddha's existence cannot depend on the coordinated operation of five skandhāḥ, for if so, the former would depend on others and then loose self-nature; without self-nature, how can it be the existence of buddha.
--Critique: Now Nāgārjuna becomes someone for self-nature? NO! The term “anātmā iti” non-self does not equal self-nature. Self-nature is an abstract, absolute nature which is regarded as self-dependent; non-self is non-subjectivity. Tathāgataḥ has no self-nature, but has to have subjectivity! However, why not the case that tathāgataḥ depends on five skandhāḥ and still has subjectivity? Does the analogy of finger-fist work? I do not think so. Finger and fist are both cognized objets, whereas tathāgataḥ and skandhāḥ may not so decisive. But perhaps this is Nāgārjuna's point? Perhaps tathāgataḥ and skandhāḥ are cognized objects, too, since it is the case that we “know” there is athāgataḥ and we “know” there are skandhāḥ, and hence our in-decisiveness is the cause of all problems? But with the reconstruction to “transcendentalize” the “know” here, the problem of the “dependence” here may be resolved, since the know become an “idealization” and no longer a linguistic reference!

T30n1564_p0030a22(00)║ 若無有自性  云何有他性
T30n1564_p0030a23(00)║ 離自性他性  何名為如來
--If there is not self-nature, how would there be other-nature? Without self-nature and other nature, who is this tathagata?
--Critique: the verse is a question: if without svabhava and parabhava, what is sufficient for calling a tathagata? I would answer: subjectivity.

T30n1564_p0030a27(00)║ 若不因五陰  先有如來者
T30n1564_p0030a28(00)║ 以今受陰故  則說為如來
--If there were to exist a tathagata not employing the constituents, he would be employing [them] at this moment, therefore he would exist employing them.
--If we assume that there were to exist a subject before any employment of the five skandas; only when the subject were employing them there would exist such a subject.
--Critique: this verse is too jumpy in relation to the former arguments...
T30n1564_p0030a29(00)║ 今實不受陰  更無如來法
T30n1564_p0030b01(00)║ 若以不受無  今當云何受
--There does not exist any tathagata who is not employing the constituents; and he who does not exist, not employing [them], how does he employ [them]?
--Critique: The verse is a response to the former verse, saying that the later half of the former verse is actually a self-contradiction. If only the subject with the operation of the five skandas were to exist, there would exist no subject without the operation of the five skandas. Also, if the subject without the operation of five skandas were not to exist, what would be going to employ them? Given that the subject without operation of five skandas is assumed, it is then only an assumption.
--Critique: What if we just idealize the subject whose ideality can only base itself on the ground of the operation of the five skandas? Also, if we do not assume a subject, how can we believe the operations of the five skandas belong to certain identity?
T30n1564_p0030b02(00)║ 若其未有受  所受不名受
T30n1564_p0030b03(00)║ 無有無受法  而名為如來
--The tathagata never exists as an ungrasped grasping; and in no way is there a tathagata without grasping.
--Critique:鳩摩羅什's translation is not quite following the Sanskrit in the first half of the verse. The translation means: without employment, what the employment (the grasping) is resulted in cannot be entitled “grasped”. This half nonetheless obviously indicates that the non-employed employment makes no sense, refusing the model of non-employed employer which is potential to employ the five skandas. The later half of the verse reinforce the statement.
--Critique: the transcendental subject as a mere idea whose basis can only be found in the employment of five skandas, is indeed a tathagata non-employed yet potential to employ which only exists at the moment of employment. Would Nāgārjuna reject that?
T30n1564_p0030b04(00)║ 若於一異中  如來不可得
T30n1564_p0030b05(00)║ 五種求亦無  云何受中有
--The tathagata, who being sought after in five ways through identity and difference does not exist, through the act of grasping, how can he be understood?
--The tathagata, that we try to find with the method of identity and difference, i.e., ckeck with the criteria of 不一、不異, that we have rejected by arguing that since tathagata and five skandas cannot be different (as suggested in the claiming of the five possibilities for tathagata to be real), cannot be found either in the argument of employment.

T30n1564_p0030b06(00)║ 又所受五陰  不從自性有
T30n1564_p0030b07(00)║ 若無自性者  云何有他性
Also that which is grasping at this place, that is not known through self-nature; and what does not exist through self-nature, from where is that through other nature?
--Besides, we can understand that tathagata cannot be found also with the method of 無自性他性.

T30n1564_p0030b17(00)║ 以如是義故  受空受者空
T30n1564_p0030b18(00)║ 云何當以空  而說空如來
--In this way, both the act of grasping and the person who is grasping are altogether empty. And how is an empty tathagata understood through what is empty?
T30n1564_p0030b22(00)║ 空則不可說  非空不可說
T30n1564_p0030b23(00)║ 共不共叵說  但以假名說
It is not to be said that he could be “empty” or “non-empty,” “both” or “neither”; For it is described [thus only] for the purpose of explanation.
T30n1564_p0030b29(00)║ 寂滅相中無  常無常等四
T30n1564_p0030c01(00)║ 寂滅相中無  邊無邊等四
In this matter, in the undisturbed state, from where are the fourfold permanent, impermanent and the rest? Also in this matter, in the undisturbed state, from where are the fourfold limited, limitless and the rest?
--Critique (A Kantian reconstruction) If we make sure that the empty is properly received, how do we understand the ultimate truth it self, i.e., time and space? Time and space are not external, independent property nor external, independent relations, but cognition-dependent and thus experience-dependent “sense” through which we present the world in time and space to ourself-- and hence they are mediate and the fundamental assay for further inference. The eternity, non-eternity, not eternal and not non-eternal that we “realize” are possible only in “experience世間,” cognition-dependent and experience-dependent. Leave cognition and experience, we cannot still stick to the “sense” of time, and it just does not matter regarding the four aspects of the temporal sense; space is similar with its four aspects: limitless, limit, not limitless and not limit. Everything begins with the birth of space and time, altogether, not only the objects we realize in them, but also the aspects of the senses of space and time themselves. The same reason as we reject the svabhava of everything, we reject the svabhava of space and time.
T30n1564_p0030c13(00)║ 邪見深厚者  則說無如來
T30n1564_p0030c14(00)║ 如來寂滅相  分別有亦非
By whom is held firmly the understanding that a solid tathagata “exists,” conjecturing, he would also imagine “he does not exist” in the ceased [state].
T30n1564_p0030c24(00)║ 如是性空中  思惟亦不可
T30n1564_p0030c25(00)║ 如來滅度後  分別於有無
And with this being empty in respect to self-nature, the thought is never plausible [that] beyond cessation a buddha either “is” or “is not”.
T30n1564_p0030c29(00)║ 如來過戲論  而人生戲論
T30n1564_p0031a01(00)║ 戲論破慧眼  是皆不見佛
[Those] who dewell on a buddha passed beyond hinderances and imperishable, they all afflicted by hinderances, do not see the tathagata.
T30n1564_p0031a06(00)║ 如來所有性  即是世間性
T30n1564_p0031a07(00)║ 如來無有性  世間亦無性
What is the tathagata as self-nature, that is this world as self-nature; the tathagata is without self-nature, this world is without self-nature.



非陰不離陰  此彼不相在
 如來不有陰  何處有如來


 陰合有如來  則無有自性
 若無有自性  云何因他有


 法若因他生  是即為非我
 若法非我者  云何是如來


 若無有自性  云何有他性
 離自性他性  何名為如來


若不因五陰  先有如來者
 以今受陰故  則說為如來


 今實不受陰  更無如來法
 若以不受無  今當云何受


 若其未有受  所受不名受
 無有無受法  而名為如來 


若於一異中  如來不可得 
五種求亦無  云何受中有


又所受五陰  不從自性有
若無自性者  云何有他性  


以如是義故  受空受者空
云何當以空  而說空如來


 空則不可說  非空不可說
共不共叵說  但以假名說

說,(因為空的範域與言說、生滅的範域就認識來說為orthogonal),對空的一切談論 都是以方便假名而說。

 寂滅相中無  常無常等四
寂滅相中無  邊無邊等四


邪見深厚者  則說無如來  
如來寂滅相  分別有亦非 


 如是性空中  思惟亦不可
如來滅度後  分別於有無 


 如來過戲論  而人生戲論
戲論破慧眼  是皆不見佛 


如來所有性  即是世間性
如來無有性  世間亦無性

Edited 5 time(s). Last edit at 11/19/2009 10:32AM by gustav.