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Adviata and Zen; Hui Neng

To: alt.religion.buddhism.tibetan
From: (John Neatrour)
Subject: Adviata and Zen; Hui Neng (9408.huineng.jn)
Date: 49940803

Quoting: |QUARK  

|(Interesting point.   It does seem that Mr. Suzuki preferred the 
|more philosophical bent of the Lankavatara and Yogacara literature.  
|Maybe this was a personal preference,  finding a lot of complex 
|material that satisfied his intellectual curiosity.   After all, it's pretty 
|hard to come up with layer upon layer of explanation for the short, terse 
|paradoxes in the Diamond(-Cutter) Sutra, for instance!)  

One hand destroys the other creates.

|(Yeah.   The standard party line, at least, says the Lankavatara was 
|emphasized by the first five Patriarchs, and this only changed because Eno 
|was supposedly enlightened from a line in the Diamond Sutra concerning the 
|non-abiding mind.   I'm not real sure just how accurate all this is, however- 
|these things are debated by top scholars.   Supposedly the Lankavatara 
|continued to be emphasized by the so-called Northern school, but recent 
|research has pretty well documented the wider sophistication of the Northern 
|school's teaching.    (Generally,  the gist of recent scholarship is that the 
|Northern school has been given a bum rap in these matters).  The same applies, 
|I believe, to the later "Golden Age" masters of the early T'ang period:   many 
|diverse doctrinal elements were already synthesized and freely used by early 
|masters such as Ma Tzu and Shitou.  It's probably a mistake to think these 
|things had a rather late synthesis).    

The bum rap of the Northern school was the authorship of the infamously
dogmatic Shen-hui, Hui-neng's disciple. There is some evidence that others in
the Hui-neng lineage were not so critical of the Northern school and
maintained friendly relations. There is a very good chance that the often
quoted Platform Sutra was composed to further the ambition of Shen-hui at
the expense of Shen-hsiu. There is the phrase in the Sandokai "there is no
patriarch of South or North". In fact teachers who were trained under
Hui-neng taught a synthesis of Southern and Northern Cha'n.

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