During 1st to 4th September, 2022, a workshop was held at the Songtsen library, Dehradun on the Original Mind and the Ordinary Rational Mind. The workshop attended by some 40 participants and organized by SIDH was chaired by the Venerable Samdhong Rinpoche. The following are the main points made by Rinpocheji in his opening address.
– The parampara of dharm and darshan appears to have started in Bharat 9000-10000 years ago. In our post-modern civilization today people have practically stopped paying attention to these darshans.
– 100 years ago Gandhiji made his views about modern ‘civilization’ very clear in ‘Hind Swaraj’. People say that it is a very simple book but if we read it a 100 times, we will get some new insight every time.
– Modern civilization has spread all across the world and because it is based on competition and not cooperation its results are also destructive.
– The world is increasingly becoming toxic for all creatures. 50 years ago the scientists agreed that there was a problem but claimed that science would soon discover solutions. Since the last 10-15 years they are saying that they have no solutions.
– This is the context in which we have to examine the difference between the Original Mind (maulik manas) and the Ordinary Rational Mind (saadharan taarkik manas). All the ills of the world have probably been brought about because of the Ordinary Rational Mind and the progressive weakening of the Original Mind.
– The basic teaching of the Buddha says: as the mind is, so will the consequences be. In ancient Indian languages mind has been variously called Buddhi, Chitta, Mati, Man, Manas, Vigyan, Gyan etc.
– Two broad divisions pratyaksh (perceiving mind that connects directly with its object) and parikalpit (conceiving mind that connects with the image of its object) are used for mind.
– A modern, educated, conditioned mind thinks that it knows things through a logical process but is actually only blindly believing what it is being told by authority figures (such and such famous scientist has said it so it must be true). This belief stops all further examination of what is being told. This is what we are calling the Ordinary Rational Mind. Another way of saying this is that the Ordinary Rational Mind is not aware of the numerous external interference that stop it from knowing things properly. A trait of this kind of mind is that it looks for quick answers to questions and is ready to believe the answers without examination.
– The Original Mind is one that is either:
a. Not affected by the numerous external interference (which is nearly impossible).
b. Is one that is aware of the interference and the effect that these interference has on it.
– J Krishnamurti used to ask people to stay with the question. This, not looking for quick answers, is a trait of the Original Mind.
– The science of the mind is a vast topic in the Parampara and it is difficult to speak about it in a few days. In the Tibetan Buddhist literature there are 108 huge books in original Tibetan and 220 huge books of translations of Indian texts, i.e. some 328 huge books with some 5800 sutras. For three years a group of scholars has been going through them and trying to extract the knowledge related to the science of mind.
The full video is linked below: