Svantantrika Approach

The Tibetan tradition divides the Madhyamaka into the Madhyamaka Self-Empty (Rangtong) and the Madhyamaka Other-Empty (Shentong). There are two kinds of Madhyamaka Rangtong Although the term Shentong was coined in Tibet, Madhyamaka Shentong represents the views of those whom, in India, were known as the Yogacara Madhyamikas. The purpose of the Madhyamaka Rangtong is to establish the emptiness of self-nature of all phenomena (dharmas). When we were considering the Cittamatra system we saw there...

Cittamatra Approach

While the Sravaka stage belongs to what is sometimes called the Hinayana, the Cittamatra stage belongs to the Mahayana. Mahayana means the Great Vehicle because its goal is the great goal of the Enlightenment of all beings. This contrasts with the goal of the Hinayana which is simply the cessation of one's own personal suffering. From the Mahayana point of view, the Hinayana is a true and valid means for removing the self-clinging that gives rise to the unhealthy emotions (klesa), the root of...

The Emptinessofother Shentong Approach

As was mentioned in the last section, many Shentong masters criticize the Prasangika Madhyamikas for their claim that they do not hold any views. In the opinion of these masters, Prasangikasjust dodge the issue because they refute everyone else's views and then avoid the refutation of their own views by claiming not to have any. From the Shentong point of view, the fault with both Svatan-trika and Prasangika Madhyamaka is that they do not distinguish between the three different kinds of...