5d. Unity in Duality - Introduced Through an Exposition of Tendrel.
Tarab Tulku, Dr. Phil. / Lharampa Geshe
Matter - Energy Interdependent Relationship
Apart from being a focus of contemporary particle physics in the West, we find matter-energy interrelationship described in the Buddhist literature *31 as early as the 4th century A.D.
In accordance with the texts junggyur (tib.'Byung-gyur) matter, as already mentioned, literally "appears" from jungwa (tib.'Byung-ba), energy (gyur in Tibetan meaning appearing).
In a later Abhidharma work *32 the beginning of evolution is described in terms of the unfoldment of the element-forces *33, which in their most subtle energy 'form' are inseparably united. When two units of the four subtle element-forces meet and fuse, four new element-forces appear. From there on, more and more coarse levels of matter develop. The first unit of the four element-forces is before form, beyond matter. It is that from which matter appears. The second element unit of these four forces is said to be part of the subtle level of matter. On this basis coarse matter manifests - the object of our senses.
Different Indian and Tibetan Abhidharma texts generally point to the interrelation of matter and energy in terms of the continuous saturation of energy in matter, and the non-existence of matter without energy.
In Tantric texts we find that the evolution of the universe in regard to the element-unfoldment of the four-inert-element-forces basic to all existence, take us from energy into matter. The element-energy relating to that of earth is the structuralizing energy - to water it is the harmonizing energy - to fire it is the maturing energy, and to air it is the energy of continuation, expansion and movement. All element forces are basic both to matter - which includes our physical body - and to the mind equally.
So whether we talk about evolution of the universe or our individual creation, the element unfoldments are describing the process of becoming. Similarly on the other hand, the enfolding process of the element-energies takes us and the universe back into the energy origin.
In this connection there is a very interesting text *34 in which evolution is likewise described as a process from energy to matter:
The first stage of evolution was Kun-gzhi, all ground, which has three qualities: darkness, density and no-thing-ness. At a certain time the density becomes so high that vibration starts. In the course of time the vibration becomes stronger and stronger, and at that time sound appears. Sound becomes louder until light and rays break out. From the light, 'awareness' *35 is born, and 'knowing' of "itself" appears. At this moment the unity nature, nirvana, and duality, samsara, split apart. From duality matter appears *36.
In accordance with Buddhism it seems that our solid bodies and all other forms of existence are evolving from the basic energy from which mind also develops. Existence is only possible due to this continuous saturation of energy throughout all its manifold forms. As the universe is inseparable from its resonating energy-origin, matter and energy are likewise inseparably related and as a consequence of that, body-mind and subject-object are also inseparably interrelated.
31. Vasubandhu's auto commentary on the Abhidharmakosakarika,1. chapter, is among other topics dealing with the relationship between the jungwa (Tib. 'Byung-ba), energy and junggyur (Tib. 'Byung-gyur), matter.
32. Abhidharma by Panchen Sönam Dragpa (1478-1555)
33. Earth-element-original force, water-element-original force, fire-element-original force, air-element-original force.
34. Drag-po rang-byung rang-shar gyi rtsa-ba'i rgyud chen-po in the Manjurian Prince (17th century) Kheng-ze chin-vang Collection, which at present is part of the Tibetan collection of the Danish Royal Library, Copenhagen. The original text is a terma found by Rig-'dzin rgod-kyi ldem-'phru cen, 13. century AD.
35. (Tib.) Rig-pa
36. The description of evolution of the universe we find in this ancient Tibetan text seems to be quite close to some of the evolutionary theories of today.