|Golden Buddha, sunrise, Wat Muang, Ang Thong, Thailand (Sasin Tipchai/Bugphai/flickr)|
|Contemplating the dependent origination of a flame meditation (roshchodeshnewmoon.com)|
Right view also means understanding something mentioned at the beginning: Dependent Origination (paticcasamupada). That is, all things arise dependent on supporting causes and conditions and not independent of them. (The one exception, leading to IT not being called a conditioned THING like everything else, is nirvana, "the unconditioned element").
|Five factors give rise to illusory flame.|
|Fire element (NLbroekieNL)|
That is not to say it's conventionally unreal. Of course, it's conventionally real. And if anyone doubts that, we'll burn you with a flame...or at least point you to a fire, and you can have at it. It is ultimately "unreal" -- that is, not at all what it seems, but rather without permanence, identity, or ability to satisfy. It is impersonal; no fire ever reaches out intending to burn someone. But burning will occur as a result of contact with it. Yet, our language forces us to say what is not actually true, which is that "It burns [inflicts injury on] us."
|Candles go out (imag.yaymicro.com)|
- Where does it "go"?
- Where's nirvana?
- What are the components of nirvana, is it those 37 mentioned before?
- Aha, but you just called it a thing!
- Aha, you just called it a 'thing' again!
- No, you shut up!
|Temple in Hamaya (Fabian Belleville/flickr)|
Heart Sutra (the epitome of the Heart of Wisdom Sutra in the Prajnaparamita literature) runs: "(1)Form is emptiness, and the very emptiness is form. Whatever is form, that is emptiness. Whatever is emptiness, that is form. And the same is true of (2) feelings, (3) perceptions, (4) formations, and (5) consciousness."
- I'm not a 'thing'!
So we beg your indulgence to pay a little attention because a little "right view" goes a long way in this continued wandering on of suffering, rebirth, and death, death, death. Actions performed with right view are very profitable, very meritorious, even for one not striving for enlightenment. So pay attention. You will rarely ever hear something so important. CONTINUED