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Tibetan Buddhism and Mystical Experience$
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Yaroslav Komarovski

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780190244958

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190244958.001.0001

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The Mind Dimension

The Mind Dimension

Chapter:
(p.44) Chapter 2 The Mind Dimension
Source:
Tibetan Buddhism and Mystical Experience
Author(s):

Yaroslav Komarovski

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190244958.003.0002

This chapter provides a general sketch of mind models used by Tibetan Buddhist thinkers, outlining diverse perspectives on the structure of mind and mental processes. In particular, it explores the twofold division of mind into conceptual and nonconceptual—a critical distinction for understanding such key mystical experiences as realization of ultimate reality. It also criticizes the category of pure contentless consciousness, which forms an important part of contemporary polemics over the question of unmediated mystical experience. It also shows how Buddhist mind models are used in discussions of realizations of reality, meditative states, etc., and demonstrates that those models not only describe such experiences and realizations, they play an important role in shaping them. It argues that this interdependent relationship between mind models and mental states is one of the reasons why it is important to interpret Buddhist mystical experiences with the help of specific Buddhist models of mind.

Keywords:   pure consciousness event, pure contentless consciousness, Tibetan Buddhism, meditative states, unmediated mystical experience, realization of ultimate reality, mind models, conceptual minds, nonconceptual minds, polemics

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