The concept of manly will in Buddhism combines Virya (manly) with Chanda (Will), where Virya is not gender-specific, it simply means “exertion of a strong human.”
“Chanda here means desire to act (kattu-kamata), that is to perform an action or achieve some result. This kind of desire must be distinguished from desire in the reprehensible sense, that is, from lobha, greed and raga, lust. Whereas the latter terms are invariably unwholesome, chanda is an ethically variable factor which, when conjoined with wholesome concomitants, can function as the virtuous desire to achieve a worthy goal. The characteristic of chanda is desire to act, its function is searching for an object, its manifestation is need for an object and that same object is its proximate cause. It should be regarded as the stretching forth of the mind’s hand towards the object.” Abhidhammattha-sangaha
I do not mean will for sensuality, including the desire for the vision of light, or for creation of desirable life. I want to oppose the type of will called “Chanda” with the analysis of qualities, the power of the mind, and subsequent power of the minds material contrivances, to divide concepts and materials. Analysis of qualities is the act of saying “no,” of making a distinction: “this is not that” or “not this, something else.” Chanda, on the other hand is the act of saying “yes”
“It’s a psychological “yes,” a choice, not a pathology” (Ajarn Succito)
The “principle of continuous…invention” that does not allow us to “rest content with a final act of devouring” on stage, but instead makes us continuously try to complete the stage itself, so that the play can begin “a place to stand” is the basic assumption that something can be invented from nothing. This is one of the most difficult problems Aristotle faces in his Physics, and offers a First Mover principle at the circumference of the universe (exactly where nothing begins) to explain this problem.
I don’t think I have ever seen something come from nothing, though. When I invent, things come from other things, put together or “caused” by other things. I have no example of something coming from nothing. It is not necessary that the universe began at all, it is simply necessary that it is to some degree here, now. That is the smallest requirement to avoid nihilism. To say that *if* it is *then* it began somewhere is to put the “then” before the “if” or to reverse causality.
So there is never a situation where the stage isn’t there and needs to be invented. Sure, it might not be the stage we want, we might want to build another stage, but that will only make us start inventing using the stage we already have. It is to do nothing very surprising, because the stage has been changing all along, and will continue changing after we’re done so that things will have to be invented just to keep it the way we want.
Now about the “devouring,” why is the “end” of the stage and play a destruction? What comes to mind is the many mythologies that have an end of the world. Fenris, the great hungry wolf that devours the sun and the father of the gods, Odin, does not begin evil. He is tricked and bound and exiled and made evil, though whether we are good or bad to him, whether his intentions are good or evil, does not change whether or not he will eventually grow to devour all of creation. What changes simply is whether or not this end of the universe is good or evil, and ultimately, neither make any difference. I mean, since we are here, we ought to endeavor to make the end of the world a happy, even blissful occasion, rather than something terrible.
And so the mystical confusion between a duck and a rabbit that Wittgenstein puts forward is the “good” kind of destruction. It destroyed the difference between a rabbit and a duck. It is Chanda, the opposite of “this, not that” Well, that isn’t much of a destruction at all, neither are consumed. It goes on doing whatever it did before, even if the “destruction” or synthesis or vagueness between rabbit and duck is preserved. It could be that the bonds of Fenris that hold him until the end of time are exactly of this type. One of the bonds could be “a duck that is a rabbit” just like one of the bonds is “the air that a fish could breath” which can only be found if a fish is confused or synthesized with an air-breathing animal.
Now, what is the significance of Fenris eating the sun and the All-Father? I think it is Chanda, the type of will other than that conditioned by lust (sexual production) or greed (light production) into something good, even if it means the end of such production.