alan wrote:Or, if you really consider it an answer, it is extremely incorrect. To the point of absurdity.
If you say so, it would seem so. If you did not say so, it would not seem to be.
What's absurd is that my words didn't actually have any explicit meaning, but you derived a particular meaning from them. How'd you do that and where did that meaning come from, when it was not made explicit?
I said, "Ignorance."
This could mean a variety of things:
1. Ignorance (within society as a whole) is constantly churning out new forms of wrong view and we need constant commentaries to re-clarify things. Because with each particular publication, it opens the door for new ways in which people can misunderstand things. Texts do not come pre-packaged with interpretations (it's the nature of language), so a commentary is sort of an interpretive guide. With each commentary, one could misunderstand it, hence a sub-commentary. But even the sub-commentary could be misunderstood and so on. In truth, it comes down to attaining ultimate knowledge through wisdom born of mindfulness and concentration. Casual pondering is not true wisdom.
2. All actions -- even those by Buddhist monks or Buddhas and Arahants -- take place within the context of Samsara. What superficially appear to be a Buddha's actions, though, are in fact entirely independent of kamma-vipaka. And so, for the perception of an ordinary person of only moderate wisdom, all things, including Buddhist texts, are manifestations of sankharas and according to Dependent Origination, all sankharas are rooted in ignorance. This means that even the Buddha's own teachings could be said to be conditioned by ignorance, a paradoxical statement consistent with the Diamond Sutra's claim that the Buddha never taught anything. But this is not an idea distinct to Mahayana, because you'll find similar ideas written by Nanananda Bhikkhu in Concept And Reality, In Early Buddhist Thought
about the Buddha being silent even when he speaks. Again, in truth it comes down to attaining ultimate knowledge through wisdom born of mindfulness and concentration. Casual pondering is not true wisdom.
3. That I personally
(being a Mahayanist and a Zen Buddhist) think the commentaries are quite stupid. They might be useful to some people, but they aren't entirely objective or factual, and in some cases are downright nonsensical. Yet again, in truth it comes down to attaining ultimate knowledge through wisdom born of mindfulness and concentration. Casual pondering is not true wisdom.
Out of these three possibilities, you picked one. Right? Or perhaps it isn't one of these three and it's another understanding entirely. How'd you do that and why?
(No need to answer that. It's rhetorical. Don't look at me. Look at your self, please!