Friday, August 5, 2016

My Unquantifiable Present (Quà Tặng)

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Do you believe ?

The Self is a habit

Bạn tin không ?

Ngã là một thói quen. Thói quen sâu dày, cốt tủy nhất trong mọi thói quen.

Vì thế nhà Phật mới có chữ “kiên cố vọng tưởng”

Và nếu tất cả các thói quen đều có thể “từ bỏ” được, thì tại sao không thể từ bỏ được thói quen cuối cùng,“đáng yêu/đáng phiền/đáng bực” và có khi đáng ghét đó ?

Tôi cá các bạn 500 đô, ai chứng minh được ngã không phải là một thói quen, tôi vui vẻ trao tặng ngay. Nhưng trước khi chứng minh, các bạn phải cho tôi thấy các bạn có thể chứng minh bằng “phương pháp”, “ sách vở, trường phái”, cách thức nào


The Self is very much (like) a habit. A deep-seated, most solidified Core Habit.

That’s the reason why the Buddhist masters/teachers came up with the word : Concrete False thoughts/mental construction/fabrication (Kiên cố vọng tưởng) . This false mental construction in—layers, layers, and layers of identification, communication, interconnection, collaboration— build the base, the foundation for the Manas-Vijnana, or simply Manas consciousness, the consciousness responsible for principally fabricating a sense, an error-filled cognizant set of information on the Self.  It is structurally the most concrete construction in consciousness to denote the Self. Via Alaya consciouness—through millions bits of processing, involving seeing, hearing,smelling, tasting, touching, and perceiving, identifying, thinking, comparing,contrasting, inferring, deducing etc. That is to say:  Cooperating with the other six senses, the Alaya consciousness will very delicately, intricately, subtly, unknowingly, “subconsciously” work and “join”, interconnect them together to form Manas , or the Self.

Imagine how you look at yourself everyday  in the mirror, comb your hair, brush your teeth; discover acne etc, how you recognize the taste of foods; hear sounds, music,  feel sores, pains, etc. All will register a cognizable piece of information into the immense, usually “unfathomable” warehouse of the Alaya consciousness, and will be fed to build base; concretize, solidify the Manas, or the Self. [ "I" am listening, "I" am hearing, "I" am feeling, "I" am "kicked" by the boss, "my" humanity got scraped, "my" suffering is unutterable etc.]  Do you see that immediate flashback to re-inforce a sense of self, right there ? Many times such actions/activities will work quietly in the background, go unnoticed. But when they bother us with enough  “force”— tweaking, poking, pinching, or awakening, for example, when they provoke some senses of fear ( minor or greater), upset, frustration, or anger, they will be realized right away with a sense of self. In the case of getting a slap for some reason, the reaction from the self is instantaneous. Most other times they just go unnoticed. For instance, we don’t notice how we would miss a family member when he/she is on a long trip, until a few days later, when we realize something missing, and that missing thing has to do something with the  person away. Or, a certain dish we like which we have not had for a while.

And here is the other message : 

If all habits can be quitted, why not this last multifold, entangled, solidified habit of the Self ? I believe this "line of thought" and contemplation will contribute great relief in time of danger, grave sickness , or at deathbed.  And as practices on meditation on the self go on, we can consequentially untangle/kick/ "voidify" ( my coined term), or at least lessen much of the fears originated from the seeming, but error-filled "Self", too. I have experience of this, and believe very strongly such is the case. 

* * Bonus for fun:

I bet you 500 dollars if you can disprove that, and will be glad to give you that amount, if you are able to. But before you prove it, show me how you’re going to prove it, meaning through what method, school of knowledge/experience.  :-)



Triṃśikā-Vijñaptimātratāsiddhi—Thirty Verses on Consciousness by Vasubandhu— translated from Sanskrit into English, and from Chinese into Vietnamese by Most Venerable Thích Thuyền Ấn from Vạn Hạnh Buddhist University, Saigon, 1972

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