Eight similes of illusion
The eight similes of illusion. (S. aṣṭamāyopamā; T. sgyu ma’i dpe brgyad; C. ruhuan yu 如幻喩) are similies or metaphors that are used to show how phenomena are be empty of inherent existence and yet still appear.
The eight similies are:
- A dream (S. svapna; T. rmi lam): like a dream, objects perceived with the five senses are not there, but they appear through delusion
- A magical illusion (S. māyā; T. sgyu ma): like a magic illusion, things are made to appear due to the temporary coming together of causes and conditions
- An optical illusion (S. pratibhāsa; T. mig yor): like a hallucination, things appear, yet there is nothing there
- A mirage (S. marīci; T. smig rgyu): like a mirage, things appear, but they are not real
- An echo (S. pratiśabda; T. brag cha): like an echo, things can be perceived, but there is nothing there, either inside or outside
- A city of gandharvas (S. gandharvanagara; dri za'i grong khyer): like a city of gandharvas, there is neither a dwelling nor anyone to dwell
- A reflection of the moon in water (S. udakacandra; T. chu zla): like a reflection, things appear, but have no reality of their own
- An apparition (S. nirmita; T. sprul pa): like an apparition, there are different types of appearances, but they are not really there
- Listed here in the order in which they appear in Longchenpa's Finding Comfort and Ease in the Illusoriness of Things.
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