A neutral base consciousness that is posited as the storehouse for the seeds of past karmic actions in which they remain in a latent state until the circumstances arise for them to ripen as karmic consequences.
Through a close examination on three Sanskrit compounds — i.e., tathāgatanairātmyagarbha, tathāgatagarbhālayavijñāna and pariniṣpannasvabhāvas tathāgatagarbhahṛdayam — in the Laṅkāvatārasūtra, this thesis will demonstrate how the tathāgatagarbha thought in the Laṅkāvatārasūtra is significantly enriched by Yogācāric influence.
First, in regard to tathāgata-nairātmya-garbha, a doctrinal review of the term "nairātmya" is necessary, because its definition differs according to different traditions. In primitive Buddhism, the term "nairātmya" is a synonym of the term "anātman" (non-existence of a substantial self), which indicates that in the realm of suffering and the impermanence of life phenomena that arise according to the principle of co-dependent origination/ pratītyasamutpāda, no eternal and dependent ātman can be found. According to the Madhyamaka School, the term "nairātmya" is a synonym of the term "niḥsvabhāva" (no
Secondly, in regard to tathāgatagarbhālayavijñāna, a doctrinal development is promoted owing to the identification of tathāgatagarbha with ālayavijñāna, which according to the Yogācāra School is also named "sarvabīljavijñāna" (cognition as the seed of everything). This latter synonym references its function of bringing forth all beings just as a giant tree originates from a seed. As a result of its identification with the ālayavijñāna, the tathāgatagarbha is said to be endowed with the function of bringing forth all forms of existence and thus becomes the "producing cause" of all. This interpretation is not seen in earlier scriptures wherein the tathāgatagarbha is described simply as a static substance supporting all beings.
Thirdly, in regard to pariniṣpannasvabhāvastathāgata-garbhahṛdayam, the implication of the tathāgatagarbha was expanded substantially by declaring that pariniṣpannasvabhāva is the very essence of tathāgatagarbha. The term "pariniṣpannasvabhāva" according to some important Yogācāra texts is defined as tathatā (ultimate realm of suchness). The combining of pariniṣpannasvabhāva with tathāgatagarbha that had formerly focused on the subjective potential of realizing wisdom, shifts the doctrinal emphasis toward the objective realm of realized perfection.
This thesis reveals that, having assimilated the Yogācāric doctrine of dharmanairātmya, ālayavijñāna and pariniṣpannasvabhāva, the tathāgatagarbha thinking in Laṅkāvatārasūtra presents the comprehensive and distinctive features in comparison to the scriptures that preceded it.
This dissertation begins with definitions of the term "tathāgatagarbha" and some of its synonyms which are followed by a brief review of the historical development of the Tathāgatagarbha theory from India to China. With these as the background knowledge, it is easier to point out the fallacies of the two Japanese scholars' criticism on this theory. A key issue in their criticism is that they viewed the Tathāgatagarbha theory as the ātman of the Upaniṣads in disguise. It is therefore necessary to discuss not only the distinction between the ātman mentioned in the Tathāgatagarbha theory and that in the Upaniṣads but also the controversy over the issue of ātman versus anātman among the Buddhist scholars.
In the discussion to clarify the issue of ātman in the Tathāgatagarbha theory, it is demonstrated that the ātman in the Tathāgatagarbha theory is not only uncontradictory to the doctrine of anātman in Buddhism but very important to the Bodhisattva practices in the Mahāyāna Buddhism. It functions as a unity for the Bodhisattvas to voluntarily return to the world of saṃsāra again and again. Furthermore, the purport of the entire theory, that all sentient beings are endowed with the essence of the Buddha, supports various Bodhisattva practices such as the aspiration to save all beings in the world, the six perfections, etc. In a word, the Tathāgatagarbha theory is an excellent representative of the soteriology of the Mahāyāna Buddhism. Included in the end of this dissertation is an annotated translation of the Tathāgatagarbha-sūtra. (Source Accessed May 26, 2020)
In part 1 he has singled out those scriptures that use the term tathāgatagarbha as their principal term and identified three scriptures—Tathāgatagarbha-sūtra, Anūnatvāpurṇatvanirdeśa, and Śrīmālādevīnirdeśa—as the basis for the formation of the tathāgatagarbha theory. Next, he has placed the Mahāyāna Mahāparinirvāṇa-sūtra, which uses the term buddhadhātu for the first time as a synonym of tathāgatagarbha, and associated scriptures in a second group, while in the third group we have the Laṅkāvatāra-sūtra and so on, in which the concept of tathāgatagarbha is identified with ālayavijñana, the basic concept of the Vijñānavāda.
In part 2, he has dealt with the prehistory of the tathāgatagarbha theory in Mahāyāna scriptures that use terms synonymous with tathāgatagarbha, such as gotra and dhātu, tathāgatagotra, tathāgatotpattisambhava, āryavaṃsa, buddhaputra, dharmadhātu and dharmakāya, cittaprakṛti, and so on. The main points made in this work are discussed in the papers that have now been brought together in the present volume.
This volume has for convenience' sake been divided into seven parts according to subject matter. Part 1 presents a textual study, namely, a critical edition of chapter 6 of the Laṅkāvatāra. Part 2 deals with subjects concerning scriptures such as the Laṅkāvatāra, part 3 with technical terms and basic concepts of the tathāgatagarbha theory, part 4 with tathāgatagarbha doctrine in general, and part 5 with Japanese Buddhism and Buddhism in East Asia (on the basis of scriptures translated into Chinese). Part 6 presents a historical survey of Japanese scholarship on Buddhism, and part 7 consists of several book reviews. (Source: Motilal Banarsidass)
(Source: Book jacket inside cover)
The book's contribution to the broader field of the History of Religions rests in its presentation and analysis of the Buddhist Enlightenment as the salvific-transformational moment in which Tathatā 'awakens' to itself, comes to perfect self-realization as the Absolute suchness of reality, in and through phenomenal human consciousness. The book is an interpretation of the Buddhist Path as the spontaneous self-emergence of 'embryonic' absolute knowledge as it comes to free itself from the concealments of adventitious defilements, and possess itself in fully self-explicitated self-consciousness as the 'Highest Truth' and unconditional nature of all existence; it does so only in the form of omniscient wisdom.
The present dissertation identifies the ontological presuppositions and the corresponding soteriological-epistemological principles that sustain and define the Mahāyāna Buddhist belief in the inherent potentiality of all animate beings to attain the supreme and perfect enlightenment of Buddhahood. More specifically, the study establishes a coherent metaphysic of Absolute Suchness (Tathatā), synthesizing the variant traditions of the Tathāgata-embryo (Tathāgatagarbha) and the Storehouse Consciousness (Ālayavijñāna).
The dissertation interprets the Buddhist enlightenment as the salvific-transformational moment in which Tathatā "awakens" to itself, comes to perfect self-realization as the Absolute Suchness of reality, in and through phenomenal human consciousness. It is an interpretation of the Buddhist Path as the spontaneous self-emergence of "embryonic" absolute knowledge as it comes to free itself from the concealments of adventitious defilements, and possess itself in fully self-explicitated self-consciousness as the "Highest Truth" and unconditional nature of all existence; it does so only in the form of omniscient wisdom.
Aside from Ruegg's La Theorie du Tathāgatagarbha et du Gotra and Verdu's study of the Ālayavijñāna in Dialectical Aspects in Buddhist Thought, Western scholarship treating of the subject is negligible. And while both sources are excellent technical treatises, they fail to integrate in any detailed analysis the dual concepts as complementary modes of each other. Thus, the dissertation, while adopting the methodology of textual analysis, has as its emphasis a thematic-interpretive study of its sources. Conducting a detailed analysis into the structure of the texts, the dissertation delineates and appropriates the inherent ontological, soteriological and epistemological foci which they themselves assume as their natural form.
Structurally, the dissertation is divided into three major parts. The first focuses on the Tathāgatagarbha, the second on the Ālayavijñāna, the third on their relation and deeper significance in the human thought tradition. The first two parts are sub-divided into seven and four chapters respectively. The former seven chapters establish the ontological identity of the Tathāgata-embryo (Tathagātagarbha) through a critical examination of the major sūtral authority for the concept, i.e., the Śrī-Mālā-Sūtra, and the primary śāstral elaboration inspired by it, viz., the Ratnagotravlbhāga.
Following the same pattern, the four chapters of part 2 note the role of the Laṅk¯āvatāra Sūtra as a principal scriptural advocate for the theory of the Storehouse Consciousness (Ālayavijñāna), while detailing the scholastic amplification of it in Hsüan Tsang's Ch'eng Wei-Shih Lun. Part 3 concludes the study by recapitulating the principal developments in the emergent complementarity of the two concepts, arguing that any adequate discussion of the Buddha Nature must be informed on the one hand by the theory of the Tathāgatagarbha which grounds and authenticates its ontological status, and on the other by the Ālayavijñāna, its noetic-cognitive determination. While the former tends to elucidate the process towards, and experience of enlightenment as a function of Absolute Suchness (Tathatā), the latter adopts the reciprocal perspective and examines the subject in the light and function of phenomenal consciousness.
By way of comparison with Western thought, the chapter likewise demonstrates the analogous dynamic in the bilateral theory of the Tathāgatagarbha-Ālayavijñāna and the Hegelian Absolute Spirit in-and-for-itself. Focusing upon The Phenomenology of Spirit, the chapter notes that the self-becoming process in and through which consciousness realizes its own plenitude is strikingly homologous to the theory of Buddhist enlightenment presented through the concept of the Tathāgatagarbha-Ālayavijñāna. It suggests that these two representative thought systems
This important study reveals how the Buddhist unconscious illuminates and draws out aspects of current western thinking on the unconscious mind. One of the most intriguing connections is the idea that there is in fact no substantial 'self' underlying all mental activity; 'the thoughts themselves are the thinker'. William S. Waldron considers the implications of this radical notion, which, despite only recently gaining plausibility, was in fact first posited 2,500 years ago. (Source: Routledge)
Frauwallner's way of translating was straightforward: to remain as close as possible to the original text while presenting it in a clear and readable way in order to convey an accurate impression of its meaning. For technical terms in the source materials he maintained a single translation even when various meanings were suggested. For clarity regarding such variations of meaning he relied on the context and his explanation.The same approach was taken by the translator of the present book. Although his translation attempts to be faithful to the 1994 edition of Die Philosophie des Buddhismus, he inserted helpful additional headlines into the text and considerably enlarged the index. All other additions by the translator are given within square brackets. Besides this, he created an Appendix, which contains one of Frauwallner's more important articles "Amalavijnana and Alayavijnana" (1951) to complement the long Yogacara section of the book, a bibliography of selective publications after 1969. The URLs for many of the source materials were also conveniently provided. (Source: Motilal Banarsidass)
The thesis focuses on the relations between mind and karma and the continuity of life in saṃsāra based upon a concept of mind, the ālayavijñāna, as presented in the texts of Asaṅga and Vasubandhu of the Yogācāra school of Indian Buddhism, A.D. 4-5th centuries. It has been the topic of many sectarian disputes as well as the springboard for several far-reaching doctrinal developments, so it is desirable to examine it within its early Indian Buddhist context.
The first section presents the multivalent viññāṇa of the Pali Canon and related concepts. It demonstrates that the major characteristics later predicated of the ālayavijñāna were present in an unsystematized but implicit form in the viññāṇa of the early discourses.
The next section describes the systematic psychological analysis developed by the Abhidharma and its consequent problematics. It argues that the incongruity of Abhidharmic analysis with the older unsystematized doctrines led to major theoretical problems concerning the key concepts of kleśa and karma, to which the Sautrāntika school offered the concept of seeds (bija).
The third section, based primarily upon the texts translated herein, depicts the origination and gradual development of the ālayavijñāna within the Yogācāra school from a somatic "life principle", to an explicitly unconscious mind, to its final bifurcation into an unconscious afflicted mind (kliṣṭa-manas) and a passive respository of karmic seeds, the latent loci of kleśa and karma, respectively.
The last section compares the ālayavijñāna systematically with Freud's and Jung's concepts of the unconscious, concluding that their respective philosophical milieus led both traditions to conceptions of unconscious mental processes as necessary compensations for strictly intentional epistemological models.
In the appendix the major texts presenting the ālayavijñāna, Chaps. V and VIII.37 of the Saṃdhinirmocana Sūtra, part of the Viniścaya-saṃgrahaṇī of the Yogācārabhūmi, and Ch. 1 of the Mahāyāna-saṃgraha, are translated and extensively annotated in order to contextualize the minutiae of this concept of mind with its canonical precursors and its Abhidharmic contemporaries. (Source: ProQuest)
Buddhism, as a religion arose in ancient India and developed in various parts of the world, aims at the unique goal that is providing welfare and happiness for human beings. The real happiness brought to mankind by Buddhism is not a satisfaction of self-requirement, but a spiritual benefit
coming from enlightenment of the absolute truth, emancipation of the ego of things and persons, and free from the hindrances of passion and ignorance. Buddhism that is mainly based on teachings of the Buddha delivered at different places on different occasions continues to develop and adapt to the new challenges in the form of thought, different cultures, religions, customs and tradition of the people wherever it went. However, all the Buddha’s teachings originate in the enlightenment of the Buddha.
All traditions of Buddhism accept that the Buddha attained enlightenment through stages of meditation that led to the Buddhahood endowed with transcendent wisdom and compassion. According to some Mahāyāna scriptures, the Buddhahood is nothing other than the Buddhanature which is the inherent essence within all beings. The doctrine of the Buddha-nature presented in several Mahāyāna scriptures of the so-called Tathāgatagarbha literature was formed in about the third century CE. There is no evidence that the doctrine of Buddha-nature formed a school in India like the Śūnyatā (Emptiness) of the Mādhyamika or the Vijñaptimātratā (Consciousness-only) of the Yogācāra School, but the Buddha-nature plays an important role in the religious life of Mahāyāna Buddhism in the East and Southeast Asian countries because it provides a faith of the permanence and immortality due to a declaration that all sentient beings possess the innate Buddha-nature and have a potentiality of becoming the Buddhas.
Although most of the followers of Mahāyāna Buddhism believe the doctrine of the Buddha-nature and constantly try their best endeavor to attain the goal of Buddhahood, there were a lot of opinions that criticize the doctrine of the Buddha-nature by asserting that it is not Buddhist because this idea of the Buddha-nature seems to be akin to the permanent Self (ātman/brahman) presented in the Vedānta of Brahmanism. Conversely, according to some other scholars, the Buddha nature or Tathāgatagarbha referred in some Mahāyāna Sūtras does not represent a substantial self or ego; it is rather a positive language to express the thought of śūnyatā and to represent the potentiality of realizing the Buddhahood through Buddhist practices. Modern scholars today fall into an unending discussion about the similarity or difference between the Buddha-nature and Brahman but no one compares the date of these doctrines. Therefore, the purpose of this thesis is an attempt to clarify the Buddhist orthodoxy of the doctrine of the Buddha-nature through chronological comparison of the date of Buddha-nature with that of Brahman. Based on the Laṅkāvatārasūtra and other scriptures, the work attempt to elucidate that the Buddhist thought of the Buddha-nature had existed prior the Vedāntic thought of Brahman. Indeed, the thesis shows that while the doctrine of the Buddha-nature had come into existence in the third century CE in the Tathāgatagarbha literature, the Vedāntic doctrine of Brahman appeared for the first time in the sixth century CE. Consequently, although the Buddha-nature is closely akin to Brahman/ātman of the Vedānta, the doctrine of the Buddha-nature is originally a thought of Buddhism. For this reason, the writer chose the topic entitled “Thought of Buddha-nature as Depicted in the LaṅkāvatāraSūtra” for the Ph.D. thesis.
Study on the Buddha-nature is a task which cannot be carried out without the important texts, teachings, practices and historical movements of Buddhism. This study is mainly based upon the Laṅkāvatārasūtra, a Buddhist text of the later period of the Tathāgatagarbha literature, in which the thought of the Buddha-nature is depicted in relationship with most of the Mahāyāna concepts such as the Buddhatā, Tathāgatagarbha, Ālayavijñāna, Dharmakāya, Mind-only, etc. Especially, the Laṅkāvatārasūtra emphasizes the practice of self-realization and sudden enlightenment of the Buddha-nature. It is also said that the Sūtra was handed down by Bodhidharma to his heir disciple Hui-ke 慧可 as the proof of enlightenment in Chan (Zen) Buddhism.
This thesis is an attempt to investigate and criticize the philosophical and religious thought of the Buddha-nature as depicted in the Laṅkāvatārasūtra. In so doing, we have taken into consideration the following principle themes:
1. Evolution of the Buddha-nature Concept
2. The Buddha-nature in the Tathāgatagarbha Literature
3. The Laṅkāvatārasūtra and Hindu Philosophy
4. The Thought of Buddha-nature in the Laṅkāvatārasūtra
5. The Practice of Buddha-Nature in the Laṅkāvatārasūtra
6. Further Development of the Concept of Buddha-nature in
As for Kong-an, the subject matter employed here are all concerning Master Bodhidharma, the first Patriarch of Chinese Ch’an Buddhism and the 28th Patriarch of in India. These three Kong-ans are:
1. The Mind is Nowhere to be found
2. The Patriarch’s Quatrain for advanced practice
3. Bodhidharma’s Skin, Flesh, Bones, and Marrow
After reading these, you would have a pretty clear picture about Kong-an and how to make contemplation on it, as well as about the over-all quintessence of fountainhead of Ch’an Buddhism.
The second renowned genre of contemplation in Ch’an Buddhism is Hua-to. Hua-to is, as it were, a diminutive of Kong-an. Or to put it this way, Kong-an is a novel, a long story, while Hua-to is a novelette, a short story. But both of them are stories. By the same token, the Kong-an is a long contemplative material, containing a story with a complete plot––the beginning, the middle, and the denouement (ending)––for its body. Whereas the Hua-to would not have a plot; it consists only of a sentence, or a phrase. Therefore, in comparison with Kong-an, it is similar to a Kong-an in miniature, or a compressed Kong-an, for the general effect resulted in contemplating on Hua-to was supposed to be the same in contemplating on Kong-an. The instance of Hua-to scrutinized here is “Who is saying ‘Namo Amito-Fo’ (or 'Namo Amitabha Buddha')?”The third genre of contemplation in Ch’an Buddhism is one based on the Text of the Sutras. And under this rubric, the one cited and examined here is just a very prestigious one, if not the most renowned; it is called “The Seven Inquiries to locate the Mind,” from The Surangama Sutra. With the knowledge and skills built up in learning to contemplate on the first two genres, the Kong-an and Hua-to, one would then be able to go on to learn and practice the contemplation of this genre. And having learned about the three genres of contemplation presented in this book, one would virtually have covered the most predominant contemplations in Ch’an Buddhism. (Source Accessed Mar 12, 2020)
addition to the traditional six kinds of mind, viz. the five sense-perceptions and non-sensory cognition (manovijñāna), there are two new, more or less subliminal forms, viz. kliṣṭa-manas and ālayavijñāna. The former is a continuous, subtle notion or feeling of 'I', whereas the latter, in accordance with the frequent Chinese rendering, i.e. "store mind," "connaissance-réceptacle, may, in a preliminary way, be characterized as the container or store-house of the latent residues or Impressions of previous actions (karman) and mind processes, or, following the usual Tibetan translation kun gźi rnam par śes pa ("fundamental mind", "Grunderkennen"), as the basic layer of mind processes or even the very basic constituent of the whole living being. It should be kept in mind that (at least in the "orthodox" Yogācāra school) ālayavijñāna is strictly person-bound, each living being having its own ālayavijñāna.
The present essay, though also including a few remarks on the origin of kliṣṭa-manas ( see § 7. 1A. 2. 2), is primarily concerned with the problem of the origin and development of ālayavijñana. Yet, my treatment of this matter is not exhaustive either. I have rather confined myself to dealing with the problem of the origin of ālayavijñāna in a rather limited sense (see § 1.4), and to an attempt to deduce, from my starting-point and the data available in the oldest materials, certain crucial aspects of the early development of this concept.
In accordance with the limited scope of the present essay, I feel it justified to confine myself, as for previous research, to a short systematic outline of the essential aspects of what it has contributed to the question of the formation of the concept of ālayavijñāna (§ 1.3). Though I admit that a full account of the history of research on ālayavijñāna would be useful, it would take much more time than I can afford, and anyway it should, in view of the fact that most pertinent works are in Japanese, be written by a Japanese scholar. Nevertheless, apart from specific references in the notes, a few recent theories on the origin of ālayavijñāana will be discussed in detail in § 7, because they advocate solutions considerably differing from mine, and because I should scarcely be justified in setting up a theory of my own if I did not give my reasons for not adopting one or the other of those already set forth.
As for the question of the origin of the concept of ālayavijñāna, the solution presented in this essay must remain a hypothetical one. In view of the fact that even basic problems of the literary history of the older Yogācāra texts, esp. of the Yogācārabhūmi, are still unsolved or controversial and since some early materials are known only from fragments—and there may have been others no longer extant in explicit quotations—, statements on the early history of Yogācāra thought are almost inevitably, at least for the time being, bound to be hypothetical. But I think Suguro is right in emphasizing that we have no choice but to try to reconstruct the historical development of Yogācāra thought if we want to re-enact it, as it were, as a dynamic, living process, and not merely take stock of the petrified (and often incoherent) results. Besides, even preliminary observations in terms of a history of ideas may, if handled with caution, on their part be helpful in resolving problems of literary history. But what I consider essential is that, even if we cannot (or cannot yet?), in our hypotheses on matters of the history of ideas (as well as of the literary history) of uncertain periods like early Yogācāra, reach certainty, we are none the less clearly called upon to proceed from mere possibility or non-committal plausibility to probability; i.e. we should try to find out criteria which permit us to single out, from among the at times considerable number of possible explanations, the one which is (or at least those few which are) probable; and it is precisely this that I intend to do in the present essay. (Schmithausen, introductory, programmatic and methodological remarks, Vol. 1, 1–3)
(*Author's notes have been omitted)Read Vol. 2 Online
|Tibetan||ཀུན་གཞིའི་རྣམ་ཤེས་ ( kunshi namshe)|
|Wylie Tibetan Transliteration||kun gzhi'i rnam shes ( kunshi namshe)|
|Chinese Pinyin||ā lài yé shí, cáng shí|
|Japanese Transliteration||arayashiki, zōshiki|
|Buddha-nature Site Standard English||ground consciousness|
|Karl Brunnhölzl's English Term||ālaya-consciousness, ground consciousness|
|Richard Barron's English Term||consciousness as the basis/ ground of all (ordinary) experience, conscious aspect of the basis/ ground of all experience|
|Jeffrey Hopkin's English Term||storehouse-consciousness, foundation-consciousness, mind-basis-of-all|
|Gyurme Dorje's English Term||substratum consciousness|
|Ives Waldo's English Term||all-ground consciousness|
|Alternate Spellings||kun gzhi'i rnam par shes pa, kun gzhi rnam shes, kun gzhi rnam par shes pa|
|Basic Meaning||A neutral base consciousness that is posited as the storehouse for the seeds of past karmic actions in which they remain in a latent state until the circumstances arise for them to ripen as karmic consequences.|
|Princeton Dictionary of Buddhism||In Sanskrit, “storehouse consciousness” or “foundational consciousness”; the eighth of the eight types of consciousness (vijñāna) posited in the Yogācāra school. All forms of Buddhist thought must be able to uphold (1) the principle of the cause and effect of actions (karman), the structure of saṃsāra, and the process of liberation (vimokṣa) from it, while also upholding (2) the fundamental doctrines of impermanence (anitya) and the lack of a perduring self (anātman). The most famous and comprehensive solution to the range of problems created by these apparently contradictory elements is the ālayavijñāna, often translated as the “storehouse consciousness.” This doctrinal concept derives in India from the Yogācāra school, especially from Asaṅga and Vasubandhu and their commentators... (p. 31)|
|Tshig mdzod Chen mo||rnam shes tshogs brgyad kyi nang gses/ ma bsgribs lung ma bstan pa'i gtso bo'i rnam shes gang zhig bag chags kyi bgo gzhir gyur pa rnam smin dang sa bon thams cad kyi rten du gyur cing don gyi ngo bo rig pa|