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Buddha and Nirvana

January 7, 2013

Book coverDirect perfect enlightenment [with regard to] all aspects,
and abandonment of the stains along with their imprints
[are called] buddha and nirvana respectively.
In truth, these are not two different things.

—Arya Maitreya

All aspects of the knowable—all absolute and relative phenomena—are directly known. Through this knowledge one is immediately and perfectly enlightened. This is the aspect of realization. All the adventitious defilements—the two veils along with their remaining imprints—are abandoned without any exception. This is the aspect of abandonment. These two qualities have been led to ultimate perfection. They are therefore named “perfect buddha” [“perfectly awakened and expanded”] from the viewpoint of the former aspect, and “nirvana” [“gone beyond any torment and pain”] from the viewpoint of the latter aspect. These two aspects are contained in one and the same meaning, the meaning of the tathagatagarbha, whereas a difference only lies in the convention of the different terms. In the sense of the absolute field of experience of the noble ones’ primordial wisdom the qualities of realization and abandonment are therefore completely inseparable and do not exist as two different things.

From Buddha Nature: The Mahayana Uttaratantra Shastra with Commentary, by Arya Maitreya, commentary by Jamgön Kongtrül Lodro Thaye and Khenpo Tsultrim Gyamtso Rinpoche, page 145

Of Interest to Readers
On January 9 we honor the parinirvana of Jamgön Kongtrül Lodro Thaye.

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