Dear t.k., if you say " from the one comes the two" - why is this statement not "monistic"?
Prior to words is the fluid realm of symbol and image. Prior to this is the luminous silence of Being. Prior to this is an unutterable mystery. From that mystery comes the one, from the one come the two, and from the two come the ten thousand things. To remain within that mystery, unborn and undying, and yet move in/as all things – the part and the whole at once, this is great joy. – t.k.
Dear t.k,, if you say " from the one comes the two" - why is this statement not "monistic" (as one of the four denials)? And, if you say "from the mystery" -why is this not theism? Or, in what way is it not theistic? Love, g.
t.k.: From the one comes the two ... is a quote from Loa Tzu, that old non-monistic, non-theistic Taoist fellow. Here "one" has already strayed from the ground of all phenomena that is a pure mystery (he calls Tao) beyond categories such as 'one or two' - being or non-being - monistic pluralistic.
The "one" is the point where the self luminosity of awareness either mistakes itself for the "one" of "Being" and then from that the 2 and the 10,000 -- or -- where unborn awareness recognizes its knowingness as a facet of mystery and its luminosity (arising as appearances) as the play of its own potency. For one who abides within realization - awareness not making this mistake - what is is beyond words and can not even be said "to be" or "not to exist" or both or neither. So, 'the one' is 'monistic' and it is the origin of misunderstanding. This statement above is Not an advertisement for "The One". Here I, like Lao Tzu before me, am simply describing how ordinary appearances of mind arise within the confused state of perception called "sentient being."
As for the term "Mystery" - why would the word mystery imply a self existent creator god or even any thing that "exists" or has substance, material gross or subtle? "Mystery" is MORE mysterious than that. I could say "ground of all phenomena" as some translators like ... or Dharmadhatu ... so blah blah blah but I chose "mystery" --- why because something that is utter mystery can not be described in any words.
In a way "mystery" is just saying whatever label you put on it IT IS MORE MYSTERIOUS THAN THAT!
These days Buddhist labels have become so mechanical, so habit ridden and full of concept ... even terms like "four denials" become just vomited verbiage. It is quite plain that no word can describe what has been said to be beyond the capacity of language and yet to speak, poetize, share, communicate one uses language (amongst other methods). Given this, I like to keep using differing language over time as any phrase used will eventually simply become a designated-object laden with conceptual constructs versus a pointer toward "mystery" ... to go beyond the pointing one needs practice.
It is worth remembering that facile criticisms of language in spirituality / religion are often based in misinterpretations with a purpose ... to show 'so and so as' flawed. Facile means: (esp. of a theory or argument) Appearing neat and comprehensive by ignoring the complexities of an issue; superficial.
Even amongst some mystics of so called theistic traditions there is an understanding of emptiness and form, and their interrelationship, as subtle and accurate as that of any Buddhist. Such mystics have used the word "God" and one must strive to understand HOW they use it rather than simply gloss over it and dismiss it as "theistic." Though in this case I can not imagine why "mystery" would imply theism.
… (later post) More thoughts on your good question - and now, as before, I am not just answering you but some others as well - your question is just the jumping off place: Language as a tool of group cohesion and dogmatic proof.Now, your average theist actually thinks (mistakenly) of God as some self existent entity AND your average Buddhist horribly misunderstands their language as well. Both are equal and the narrow minded of each, shoots philosophical dogma arrows from behind the ramparts of their linguistic castle. Get it?Usually this tendency is stronger in lands and people to whom a particular tradition is 'new.' Because they tend to be accused of 'not getting it right,' they are compelled to 'prove' their correctness with linguistic dogmatism that utterly misses one of the primary uses of language in spiritual communication.In defense of god language: God language is a mytho-poetic exclamation of wonder and awe at sacredness. The body mind like a semi-permeable membrane seems to have an inner an outer with the skin and senses being the membrane. The inner implies (but does not have to) a 'self' who perceives - the outer implies (but does not have to) an other/objects. In Truth the inner is a vast non-dimensionality of intrinsic purity - an awareness without self, location, or existence. The outer is an expanse of luminous clarity, the frolic of nothingness/brightness.The inner falls into an infinity of Silence. The outer radiates into an infinity of wonderment. The human being is like the god Janus who had two faces and stands in a doorway seeing both directions -- the body is the doorway, the senses perceive both directions and nowhere is a self or other actually found but infinite wonder and silence prevails.When the mind leans toward relationality, it sings of Otherness and even uses (the oh so scary for Buddhist with overly tight tweed panties) the word God! Oy vey! (אױ װײ) When the mind leans toward silence, it uses the language of emptiness. When mind rests in deep realization, it is beyond any language and may use language any way it wishes for the benefit of beings. Body is a blimp of perception. A giant bubble of perceiving floating across the room of (so-called) existence. It is (can be) so filled with love, wonder, joy that it gurgles and chortles mytho-poetic happiness ... it behooves the one who reads such to let their mind sink into the ocean deep and drown -- even if this requires loosening the belt a notch or two so breathing might happen. Oh DAMN! my tweed panties are so ITCHY!!!!!!