Bhavanirodha (No Future!)

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Only the present moment and nothing else!
Why?
Because there is nothing else!
And because the future
is not as much fearful or promising
as we believe.
Fear and hope are just bad habits.
The future is innocent
like all things
that do not exist
are innocent and pure!

And what is it really
that is fearful or hopeful bout the future?
That what we fear or desire
“there”
will one day become
“now”?
And that what we desire
“now”
will not come to pass
“then”?

But there has never been
“then”,
there has always been
now,
just now,
always now.
The future never betrayed us,
it’s we who always betray
the present.
The future always comes in time,
it is we who are never ready to receive it.
The future doesn’t exist in the future,
it can only be experienced
now.

Whatever hopes and dreams and fears and worries
and the myriad other feelings which weigh down the heart
that deprive us from receiving our precious gift of life
will never join us in our journey after death.
In a single moment of break-up
they will all vanish forever.
And what is it that will remain then?
Nothing,
except for the force
the momentum of one’s yearning
or the momentum of one’s peace.

Yearning leads to life,
to rebirth,
to the perpetuation of being,
and to the everlasting thirst,
for a never possible future,
with endless hopes and dreams and fears
and the myriad other feelings
which weigh down the heart
that deprive us from receiving
again,
our precious gift of life!
And again and again and again!

Peace leads to release,
total escape,
even beyond heaven.
For one who sees
that there is no future –
the restlessness in his heart
is wholly extinguished.
He is safe and at peace,
in every present moment,
He ‘has’ no future,
he takes nothing with him.
He too no longer exists.
At last,
he becomes innocent and pure,
like all things
that do not exist.

Only the present moment and nothing else!
There,
is the cessation of being.

There is no Suffering!

Kamma is not suffering, it is not the suffering itself, but only how suffering comes to be. Kamma is how we come to substantiate our experience and end up suffering thereby. Ultimately there is no suffering, nor happiness – experience itself is empty. But it is through the vast depository of mental habits and tendencies, which is what kamma is, that we make sense of our experiences. The Buddha taught that a path exists through which we can make sense of experience independently from this kamma; not by means of relating to experience, but through transcending it. It is neither simple nor mere idea or assertion, that there is such a path. This is so radical! An alternative exists; it is that of exercising the intuition, the consciousness and the will, or the citta, in such a way as to result in the development of a world-view and self-view that are not based on personality and on conditioned preferences of craving, aversion, fear, and attachment – an emotion-free gnosis. But what is important here is to understand and continually remind oneself that kamma is not suffering, it is not even what begets suffering – kamma is what creates not only suffering, but also happiness. Kamma is what creates the emotional content of all experience. Experience itself is lacking any kind of emotional content; there is nothing in experience; and nothing at all can be said of the reality of experience except for the six elements which make experience experienceable through contact with the six senses. Aside from this apparent existence, experience itself is entirely hollow. And kamma is nothing other than the force which substantiates experience particularly through imaginatively ascribing emotional and love-hate attributes to experience. It is in that sense that renunciation is that of the self, not of the world! It is in that sense that suffering can be wholly eradicated, not through the guaranteeing of a conditioned happiness, but through the eradication of the kamma which substantiates experience, and the uprooting of the delusion that experience is personal.

The end of suffering is the realisation that suffering does not exist, because experience is just a dream, or a nightmare if you will, because a self does not exist, because all forms of existence are conditioned.

There is no suffering which we can endeavour to bring to an end. The only thing that we can work with in order to be free is not suffering, but the delusion that a suffering self exists. I am here trying to explain what avijja is, and how it is the root of the twelvefold chain.

We are not unfree because suffering exists, we are unfree because we believe that we exist! There is no one and nothing to blame! This existence is innocent, it seems after all! How else would Nibbana be possible?!

It deserves,
it warrants –
a battle to the death,
with Mara.

Viññānanirodha

A discourse on the unfreeness of the “free-will”, and the lack of consciousness in the “consciousness”!

The expression “free-will” is misleading, because there is no true freedom in the exercise of a spontaneous will. Arising and fading away, by itself, according to external causes and conditions, our will is not our own, does not belong to us, does not remain with or emerge from any “self”, but is only triggered or spurred to function in response to external or internal, physical or mental, stimuli. Through the vast repertoire of memory and stored data of past experiences (sañña), extending back across incalculable lifetimes it is said – the will arises established on and conditioned by that karmic foundation.

the only true freewill is that which arises through renunciation: dispassion, non-desire, and non-attachment. every other form of action is in its origination dependent, conditioned, and triggered, and in its nature spontaneous, unchosen, self-unconscious, and unfree. Therein lies the difference with regard to kamma; its diminishing and extinction, or its propagation and intensification.

And the greatest renunciation is that of truly realising the spontaneity, non-self of all action. There lies in this renunciate realisation of the spontaneity of will the realisation also of our ultimate freedom and lack of a self: “this is spontaneous! This arises spontaneously! This is not up to me! This is not under my control! This is not freely-willed! This is not willed at all! This is just happening! This just arises!” Through this renunciate realisation _for any truly honest and sincere heart_ there grows estrangement, alienation, dispassion, non-attachment and non-identification, with regard to one’s own entire life of action, to which one would otherwise _that is, without such renunciate realisation_ be habitually profoundly attached, physically, emotionally and conceptually.

The problem here is that, before one attains the final goal of full emancipation, this renunciate realisation does not cause the human conditioned consciousness and will to cease themselves! The consciousness continues, and it keeps presenting its habitual findings ceaselessly: “this is pleasurable, that is painful. This feels good, that feels bad. This resembles good, that resembles bad. This is loved, that is hated. This is this, that is that. This is not that, that is not this.” Thus it rolls like thunder in the sky, never to stop, not even during sleep. And it is precisely that which makes our striving very hard, in that as we strive to remove the delusion of selfhood (represented here in viññāna), or to liberate ourselves therefrom, we do not see any evidence, that we are being likewise liberated from “existence” (bhava) as well! However much we endeavour to become estranged from consciousness and will, and however much we do become estranged from consciousness and will, this nāmarūpa, our being in this existence, subject to contact with its utterly futile forms, impressed by such contact – does not in itself cease or even diminish.

This is the finest case of vibhavatanha; our striving is lacking pañña when what we seek is the destruction of existence (or experience) itself rather than the destruction of delusion regarding existence and experience! The consciousness and will themselves cannot be destroyed, and until parinibbāna, they will never stop! And through the practice of estrangement and dispassion with regard to them, the only thing that ceases is their spontaneity and subjection to external conditions. That which is being uprooted here is the emotional attachment with regard to the experience of contact and its impact, and Nibbāna is only perfection, unshakability, of such estrangement and dispassion respecting the automatic, conditioned, and spontaneous consciousness and will.

Then as we strive with pañña, we view this aversion regarding what we have to alienate ourselves from (viññānupādānakhanda), to be a product of precisely what we strive to alienate ourselves from! I call it “punishment”, that which lovers inflict upon each other, precisely when all love is lost! Our aversion against “self”, against spontaneous and conditioned consciousness and will, arises due to our continued dependence on precisely consciousness and will! Again, it is only a case of love, being turned into hate – having been for so long so profoundly attached to and identified with this ceaselessly buzzing and active consciousness and will, when the time comes for us to alienate the mind with respect to them, we hate their very continued existence and manifestation altogether.

But let all these mental, verbal, social, and bodily actions – let it all arise, let it happen, let it “come to be” – only, never surrender the sustained attention, estrangement, and dispassion, regarding all that arises!

Imagination is a Prison!

It is in the “imagination”, that the mundane human seeks his mundane emancipation! Finally it all comes down to imagination, whether knowingly or unknowingly, self-consciously or unconsciously, intentionally or spontaneously, the mundane human places his ultimate faith in that, not only his own imagination, but also that of others. It is here that the search for meaning, freedom, power, control, and happiness, commences and ends, for the mundane human. Through thought, through art, through science, through sports and politics, even sometimes through religion – in about every domain of mental and physical activity in which the karmic and habitual identification with the body and the imagination is not abandoned, experience does not stand alone, does not give out reality as a result, but only separation, dissatisfaction, and depression, with regard to reality, and with regard to experience itself!

On the basis of what circumstance did the Buddha teach non-identification with and non-attachment to body and imagination?

Because _contrary and quite the exact opposite to our belief in the limitlessness of imagination_ “form” or materiality, the object of all possible imagination, is strictly limited. That our imagination is nothing more than a function over form, over what the senses experience, over memories and impressions of sensorial experiences (sañña), makes it a condition of serfdom rather than freedom, repetition and utter bore rather than originality and revelation. An endless function, surely as such nothing can rival imagination; but what really does it give? It only seem to give us what we wanted, precisely through its endless, recursive nature, and its immediate ability to elicit and induce emotion. In a certain sense, having generally and repeatedly failed in finding precisely meaning, freedom, power, control, and happiness, in reality and in our direct experience; our submission to imagination arises as a result of it being nature’s spontaneous, readily-accessible, and ever-present “stimulant of life”. 

Thoughts do not reflect reality, and it is not through ideation that we grasp truth. Thoughts reflect desire (tanha), our judgement and preferences regarding reality, and it is through precisely ideation that we grasp a qualification of truth but not truth itself! Whatever pleasurable juice or painful poison we ascribe to phenomena, all of this remains far from truth itself, one in which no “self” is affected or concerned. The Buddha teaches the path to grasping reality and truth through a very simple form of dispassionate recognition, of time, of transformation, and thereby of the utter lack of identity and substantiality in all phenomena. That’s why we are ever directed to suññata whenever we attend to the element of ‘gnosis’ (ñana), and its experiential counterpart, nirodha! In fact, that’s where we’re directed whenever we manage to truly concentrate at all! Because then that is the great difficulty in our quest to grasp reality and truth, it requires us to be already in possession of our purity and peace, in that grasping truth is achieved simply by letting-go of imagination! We do not seek out reality, we rather turn our backs to imagination and delusion, the rest comes all by itself! The difficult part has always been to know exactly what is it that we are renouncing here, and how to renounce it. This right renunciation suceeds in persevering in “seeing the point” in cultivating this “very simple form of dispassionate recognition, of time, of transformation, and thereby of the utter lack of identity and substantiality in all phenomena”! Yet who on this earth can do this without suffering?! Who sacrifices one’s existence in this way, for the sake of the truth? Who keeps at such a task, such devotion and faith, even though he is only promised to find “emptiness” in the end?!

To such a hopeless extent we have been continually dependent on it that it has become exceedingly difficult to conceive of a mode of mental life in which imagination is _not absent_ but not spontaneous and continual either, not a factory of emotional stimulation! The Buddha had discovered that there exists a mode of mental life in which imagination is controlled, subjected to mental will rather than commanding the will. The Buddha teaches a mode of mental life in which only the right measure and kind of imagination is being resolved to, and only in the right time also. Through this sublime mode of mental life, free from the compulsive drive of spontaneous imagination, the mind’s attentive and penetrative capacities evolve to such an extent that emotional stimulation gradually diminishes, and with that, there finally begins the evaporation of the thick and heavy layer of delusion which separates the consciousness from reality and from experience. And finally, we find out that reality and experience are no longer “personal” phenomena; existence is no longer a “personal” experience in relation to which we can indulge in preferences! Things are in themselves neither good or bad, pleasurable or painful, meaningful or meaningless, belonging here or there, deserving this or that – but everything is just “the way it is”, because the imagination which used to impose all these attributes over the tiniest experiences, thereby also eliciting obsession, fear, and aversion, over about everything that comes across the scope of the senses, has been now disciplined and tamed. This whole existence appears to be without attributes, without features, without meaning and purpose also! The world as a mundane thing seem to vanish, and vanishes also, the mundane “self”. One then looks back at the time when imagination was the creator of all this world and everything in it, when one used to take it seriously, to place immediate and unquestionable faith in its findings and conclusions, and ceaseless desires, on a momentary basis – one beholds the suffering and confusion which this habitual imagination used to cause, for oneself and for others, and finally one recognises the taste and substance of true, transcendental freedom, beyond the contamination, the deception, the evil, the suffering, the utter bore, and the prison, of spontaneous imagination.