[Buddha-l] a worthwhile read--Red Pine (BIll Porter) interviewed

Elvin Eldridge elvineldridge at gmail.com
Sat Oct 3 12:48:55 MDT 2009

On Sat, Oct 3, 2009 at 6:16 AM, Dan Lusthaus <vasubandhu at earthlink.net>wrote:

> > I read the scholars review of Bill Porters book "Two Entrances and Four
> > Practices" (I can't find a reference now, but I remember the point),
> >
> > The review said the two entrances were called liru and xingru. Liru
> should
> > have the meaning of "enterance by principle" and xingnu should have the
> > meaning of "entrance by practice". And the first one means a kind of
> > sudden
> > enlightenment entrance and the second one means a kind of gradual
> > practice.
> > But Porter tanslated liru as "entry by rationality," which the reviewer
> > said
> > is a complete misunderstanding.
> The reviewer is full of crap. 理 li means a lot of things. "Principle" has
> become a kind of mindless default equivalent used by lots of so-called
> scholars, not realizing that they are buying into Neo-Confucian
> developments
> and usages of the term, not home-grown Buddhist usages.

I wonder what Homegrown means in a case like this becasue I read in books by
cleary , Chang ,  and Frances Cooke and others about the Hua-yen Buddhism
and I think they always called the Li as "principle." So it seems like
Principal is also Homegrown maybe even more HOmegrown than Rationalty which
I never saw in teh Hua-yen or Zen Buddhism book. I dont say Im an expert on
it but I think I saw Principle more than other translations. And they didn't
talk about Confucius either.


> Li does mean reason,
> even logic, in Buddhist contexts. Porter obviously gave the matter some
> thought and decided as he did. Whether one agrees or not is another matter.
> > But I think that from the practitioners viewpoint maybe we shouldnt worry
> > so
> > much about these kinds of details and just accept all the translations as
> > they are without criticizing.
> > Elvin
> Anyone, practitioner or otherwise, who does that is an idiot and a victim
> of
> his/her own idiocy. Buddhists should practice perspicaciousness, not
> voluntary blindness. Unless one is practicing a certain kind of tantra,
> there is a definite difference between "food" and "fecal matter," and one
> shouldn't accept both equally and with equanimity on one's plate. Basic
> nutrition -- and Buddhism, from its earliest days, has been concerned with
> nutriments of all sorts.
> Dan
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