Here's another passage from Steve Hagen's book, "Buddhism Plain and Simple," that I liked a lot. It helps explain what Hagen means by seeing, the key notion in his book.
The way I interpret what Hagen says below isn't that we can't have views, opinions, biases. I'm a progressive who wants Kamala Harris to beat Mike Pence's butt in tonight's vice-presidential debate.
Supporters of Pence have a different view. That's fine.
What isn't fine is believing that our view is 100% correct, faultless, impossible to be argued with. As I often say on this blog, nothing is completely certain. Even science recognizes that the most proven scientific theories are open to falsification, even though the chance of this is low.
So Hagen says we shouldn't be caught by our views. We shouldn't hold on to them so tightly we can't make room in our mind for considering alternative views.
I also like what Hagen says about a view of the Whole.
I'm not sure how practical or easy it is to have a view of the Whole, though. I suspect that what Hagen means by this is that our overall view of reality should be based on the core Buddhist tenet that everything changes, nothing is fixed in place forever.
The first aspect of the eightfold path is right view. According to the Buddha, to hold onto any particular view is to freeze Reality, to try to encapsulate the world into thought. To take a view is like taking a snapshot -- you've frozen the scene right there.
Once we hold a view, it's not long before our view will buck up against other views. After that, the people holding the various views will file off into separate camps. And then we start to go after each other.
What the Buddha meant by right view isn't like this at all. The view of a Buddha isn't an ordinary, frozen view.
There are those who argue that the Buddha didn't have any view whatsoever, but this is not correct. What the Buddha meant by right view is not being caught by a particular view. It's not being caught by ideas, concepts, beliefs, or opinions.
The view of a buddha is of how things actually are -- which in light of the constant flux and flow of the world, is no one way in particular.
After all, how can things be a particular way if they are in constant motion? How can a hard-and-fast view of a world that is never hard or fast possibly be accurate?
It's not the particulars of the world that provide us with right view, but the world itself, as an ever-dynamic Whole. Right view is Wholesome -- that is, it's of the Whole. It's all inclusive. It leaves nothing out.
Such a view, by definition, does not go to war with any other view. In fact, it cannot. Since it's already of the dynamic world as a Whole, we can't conceive of anything that opposes it.