As the Revulsion Turns

  1. The world is no more than thought-construction and there rages an ocean of views as regards ego and things (dharma); when the world is clearly perceived as such and there takes place a revulsion [in the mind] this [one] is my child who is devoted to the truth of perfect knowledge.

I remember writing way back during our Complete Lanka and Discussion (found in our library) forum that Suzuki had chosen a really horrible word (revulsion) for what we Lankavatarians know as the Great Turn-About, or the complete inner-oscillation within consciousness to remain prior to phenomena via the Recollective Resolve, or returning to the very vivifying Primordial-Source Itself. This Turn-About is also known as paravriti and is mentioned frequently in the Lanka. My favorite instance occurs in Chapter One wherein the Lord of Lanka suddenly experiences this and all it spiritually entails:

The Lord of Lanka was then immediately awakened from his reflection, feeling a revulsion (paravriti—TURN ABOUT) in his mind and realizing that the world was nothing but his own mind: he was settled in the realm of non-discrimination, was urged by the stock of his past good deeds, acquired the cleverness of understanding all the texts, obtained the faculty of seeing things as they are, was no more dependent upon others, observed things excellently with his own wisdom (buddhi), gained from the insight that was not of discursive reasoning, was no more dependent upon others, became a great Yogin of the discipline, was able to manifest himself in all excellent forms, got thoroughly acquainted with all skillful means, had the knowledge of the characteristic aspects of every stage, by which he would surmount it skillfully, was delighted to look into the self-nature of Citta, Manas, Manovijnana, got a view whereby he could cut himself loose from the triple continuation, had the knowledge of disposing of every argument of the philosophers on causation, thoroughly understood the Tathagatagarbha, the stage of Buddhahood, the inmost self, found himself abiding in the Buddhaknowledge; when suddenly a voice was heard from the sky, saying, “It is to be known by oneself.”

Hence, the Lord of Lanka became transfigured into that child who is devoted to the truth of perfect knowledge. All this translates as the following, from our Complete Lanka and Discussion:

Hence, “when a revulsion (turn-about) has not taken place in the Alayavijnana known under the name of Tathagata-garbha, there is no cessation of the seven evolving vijnanas,” and therefore defiled phenomena is continually unleashed; when a revulsion (turn-about) does take place, there is the re-emergence (through the Recollective Resolve) of its Original Undefiled Nature (the Unborn Mind). Another way of expressing this is what Sutton states, “Being closely associated with the system of the Senseperceptions (Vijnanas), it is only through its purification, or reabsorption (paravrtti—or turn-about) that the Embryo-of-Buddhahood may emerge in its original state.” (Existence and Enlightenment in the Lanka, p.86)

Returning again to my former abhorrence of the term “revulsion”, I’m more inclined now to state that it has a most significant value. The word itself can be broken down as follows:

Noun
A strong feeling of repugnance, distaste or dislike:
Cruelty fills me with revulsion.
A sudden and violent change of feeling or response in sentiment, taste, etc.
The act of drawing something back or away.

This all has much to do with the outcome of that Turn-About, for the Mind-adept soon learns that anything apart from the One Unborn Buddha Mind should fill one with repugnance. In the true spirit of Gautama Buddha himself, phenomena is to be looked upon with suspicion—at times even dread. In effect, one draws-back in horror as to what can be many fatal-attractions. As one begins to cultivate their spiritual practices of reading and meditation, one soon develops a form of distaste for even things they once held dear. Once one awakens and returns to the Unborn, there is no turning back. And paravriti is the mechanism that permanently seals the One Taste and the One Mind outside of which all other dharmatas pale in comparison. Liberation is won!

  1. [Cleary]: The phenomena of heat, fluidity, motion, and hardness imagined by the ignorant are untrue attributions; there is nothing definable and no definition.

All that is imagined is actually fluids coming-together, no more no less. Recollect as the Blessed-One taught, salvation is not needed for this skandhic-thing that in essence constitutes nothinghood:

The Buddha never claimed that salvation was needed for this skandhic-person thing (that is falsely conceived to be a self-person); indeed, this is falling into the territory of the no-self, just a coming together of fluids (form, sensation, thought, volition, mortal consciousness). Hence, True Compassion is not about a person-thing, rather it is about a Mind-thing; yes, empowering Mind to awaken from the mad pluralized dream of its own making—to pull back the curtain of Mara’s nightmare and to reveal the Real looking at the real and No-thing else. Just Light from Light; Pure Mind from Pure Mind.

  1. But this body, form (samsthana) and senses are made of the eight substances; deluded in the cage of transmigration, the ignorant thus discriminate this phenomenal world (rupa).

In this context Saṃsthāna constitutes form as a position in space—it bands the skandhas all together like a fortress. Yet, this fortress is a façade, one that will dissolve-away at the end of the kalpa, as all kalpas do. Just sands of time slipping away until time itself is no more. As a metaphor, the Greek Kronos stands as the God of Time and the father of Zeus, until such time when his awful all-destructive force becomes self-consuming. A good depiction of Kronos can be seen in the film, Wrath of the Titans.

  1. In the intermingling of causes and conditions, the ignorant imagine the birth [of all things]; but as they do not understand the truth, they go astray in this abode of the triple world.

This “intermingling of causes and conditions” creates the apparent birth of all things. Yet this interrelationship continues to be cyclic—regeneration, until over time entropy will once again rule the roost. Regeneration is not a static birth, but a reconstituting of elements over and over ad nauseam. This constitutes the cosmic play of the triple-world, a continued passport into future karmic-realms (kāma-dhātu).

  1. [Cleary]: All things, without inherent existence, are in fact human speech. Yet there is no creation from thinking; existence is like a dream. If one observes this, one will not go with the common flow, nor yet pass away.

It’s all a word-game perpetuated through language that keeps the dream moving and the ignorant in perpetual bondage. Once awakened the cycle can be broken, yet the [surrounding] old order of things will continue in the same-vein—never passing away but just recycling habit-energy till ol’ Kronos blows his cool.

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