Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby Alex123 » Sat Mar 12, 2011 3:14 am

tiltbillings wrote:
Alex123 wrote:
tiltbillings wrote: did not say that, either. No need to.




So you disagree with SN 22.97 when it says that "there is no form... no feeling... no perception... there are no fabrications... there is no consciousness that is constant, lasting, eternal, not subject to change, that will stay just as it is as long as eternity. ?


It seems like you have no clear cut answer. You say that you didn't say that awareness remains eternally. Then you don't say that awareness ceases. So what is your answer?


Do you accept suttas such as Ud 8.9 and -SN 22.97?
I have no problem with the suttas.



So what do they mean when they say: ""there is no form... no feeling... no perception... there are no fabrications... there is no consciousness that is constant, lasting, eternal, not subject to change, that will stay just as it is as long as eternity. ? - SN 22.97
"The body disintegrated, perception ceased, pain & rapture were entirely consumed, fabrications were stilled: consciousness (Viññāṇaṃ) has come to its end.” – Ud 8.9


They are clear. No form, no feeling, no perception, no fabrications, and no consciousness remain.


I can understand the reason why some may dislike such teaching:

"But, lord, might there be agitation over what is internally not present?"

"There might, monk," the Blessed One said. "There is the case where someone has this view: 'This cosmos is the self. After death this I will be constant, permanent, eternal, not subject to change. I will stay just like that for an eternity.' He hears a Tathagata or a Tathagata's disciple teaching the Dhamma for the elimination of all view-positions, determinations, biases, inclinations, & obsessions; for the stilling of all fabrications; for the relinquishing of all acquisitions; the ending of craving; dispassion; cessation; Unbinding. The thought occurs to him, 'So it might be that I will be annihilated! So it might be that I will perish! So it might be that I will not exist!' He grieves & is tormented, weeps, beats his breast, & grows delirious. It's thus that there is agitation over what is internally not present."

"But, lord, might there be non-agitation over what is internally not present?"

"There might, monk," the Blessed One said. "There is the case where someone doesn't have this view: 'This cosmos is the self. After death this I will be constant, permanent, eternal, not subject to change. I will stay just like that for an eternity.' He hears a Tathagata or a Tathagata's disciple teaching the Dhamma for the elimination of all view-positions, determinations, biases, inclinations, & obsessions; for the stilling of all fabrications; for the relinquishing of all acquisitions; the ending of craving; dispassion; cessation; Unbinding. The thought doesn't occur to him, 'So it might be that I will be annihilated! So it might be that I will perish! So it might be that I will not exist!' He doesn't grieve, isn't tormented, doesn't weep, beat his breast, or grow delirious. It's thus that there is non-agitation over what is internally not present."
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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Mar 12, 2011 3:24 am

Alex123 wrote:They are clear. No form, no feeling, no perception, no fabrications, and no consciousness remain.
What is clear is that there is no way to measure what is trackless. Remains, does not remain, both remains and does not remain, and neither remains nor does not remain do not apply. All just lost in words. You can bend your self into pretzels over this, but I see no reason to not take the Buddha seriously.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby retrofuturist » Sat Mar 12, 2011 3:28 am

:goodpost:

on a slightly unrelated manner, this topic has drifted well away from Discovering Theravada territory (I suppose it was always going to be difficult to keep contained given the subtlety of the subject) and will be moved to the General Theravada area.

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One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby legolas » Sat Mar 12, 2011 3:38 am

I think one of the problems with understanding Nibbana is that we don't really understand how much we suffer, even in the heavenliest heaven. Nibbana promises the ending of all that suffering and the path we take towards Nibbana, is littered with Dhammic jewels we would never have found without the Dhamma. So we begin to recognise that the path we are on is making us happier and happier. The big problem is that because Nibbana is unconditioned - our conditioned minds and conditioned words and conditioned thoughts cannot get to grips with it. This is how it should be - if we could totally get to grips and formulate a perfect understanding of Nibbana from our conditioned view point, then it really could not be Nibbana. The Buddha's similes are the nearest inkling we are going to get as regards Nibbana, without experiencing it.
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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby ground » Sat Mar 12, 2011 3:44 am

:goodpost:

However I consider persistent obscurations to be the thought of "happiness" and the thought that "Nibbana is unconditioned"


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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby Aloka » Sat Mar 12, 2011 8:59 am

TMingyur wrote:

However I consider persistent obscurations to be the thought of "happiness" and the thought that "Nibbana is unconditioned"



Ajahn Sumedho uses the term 'the unconditioned' for Nibbana.

I recall him saying in an offline talk I attended : "Enlightenment is from the unconditioned and not from a sense of ego and an idea of enlightenment".

Additionally in his book "Don't Take Your Life Personally " page 19, he says " When you contemplate the Four Noble Truths and use them as your paradigm for practice, it becomes clear that the third and fourth truths are definately the realisation of the unborn or the unconditioned. (nibbana) "


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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Mar 12, 2011 9:13 am

Aloka wrote:
TMingyur wrote:

However I consider persistent obscurations to be the thought of "happiness" and the thought that "Nibbana is unconditioned"



Ajahn Sumedho uses the term 'the unconditioned' for Nibbana.

I recall him saying in an offline talk I attended : "Enlightenment is from the unconditioned and not from a sense of ego and an idea of enlightenment".

Additionally in his book "Don't Take Your Life Personally " page 19, he says " When you contemplate the Four Noble Truths and use them as your paradigm for practice, it becomes clear that the third and fourth truths are definately the realisation of the unborn or the unconditioned. (nibbana) "
The interesting thing is that when one starts to carefully look at these terms as they are actually used in the suttas "the unborn" and "the unconditioned" as expressions can be seen as being a bit clumsy and even misleading, as if there were an "unborn" that is referred to as "the unborn."

Let us look at that usage where ajaata "the unborn" and nibbana are clearly synonyms:

Then the group of five monks, being thus exhorted, thus instructed by me
[the Buddha], being liable to birth because of self, having known the perils
in what is liable to birth, seeking the unborn
[jaata.m], the uttermost
security from the bonds -- nibbana -- won the unborn, the uttermost security
from the bonds -- nibbana...."
-- from the PTS translation of the Majjhima
Nikaya I 173
What is "the unborn?" What does it mean? Try this:

”Then the group of five monks, being thus exhorted, thus instructed by me
[the Buddha], being liable to birth because of self, having known the perils in
what is liable to birth, seeking freedom from birth, the uttermost security
from the bonds -- nibbana -- won freedom from birth, the uttermost security
from the bonds -- nibbana...."
Here we have a clarity in language and a symmetry of language - that is, being liable to birth and being free from birth. The privative prefix a, as in ajaata.m, indicates the opposite. If I am liable to an obligation I do not want, then what I am looking for is freedom from the obligation I do not want.

Freedom from birth is a common theme of the Buddha:

Through not seeing the Four Noble Truths,
Long was the weary path from birth to birth.
When these are known, removed is rebirth's cause,
The root of sorrow plucked; then ends rebirth.
DN ii 91

With firm resolve, guard your own mind!
Whoso untiringly pursues the Dhamma and the Discipline
Shall go beyond the round of births and make an end of suffering.
DN ii 123

"Destroyed is birth; the higher life is fulfilled; nothing more is to
be done, and beyond this life nothing more remains."
DN ii 153 (Walshe’s
translations.)

One does not seek "the unborn”; one seeks freedom from birth/rebirth.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby Aloka » Sat Mar 12, 2011 9:24 am

One does not seek "the unborn”; one seeks freedom from birth/rebirth.



I notice that Ajahn Sumedho says later in the same book I mentioned (p309)....

The Theravadins like the term 'the unconditioned' and there are many references to this : "There is an unborn, unconditioned, uncreated, unoriginated. If there were not the unborn, unconditioned, uncreated, unoriginated,there would be no escape from the born, the conditioned, the created, the originated."

This is, I think, one of the most profound statements ever made. It is so very simple and so very clear.



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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Mar 12, 2011 9:32 am

Aloka wrote:
The Theravadins like the term 'the unconditioned' and there are many references to this : "There is an unborn, unconditioned, uncreated, unoriginated. If there were not the unborn, unconditioned, uncreated, unoriginated,there would be no escape from the born, the conditioned, the created, the originated."

This is, I think, one of the most profound statements ever made. It is so very simple and so very clear.

And I think it is utter nonsense, and actually this passage appears twice in the suttas. What could it possibly mean? This text often gets pressed into sevice by those who want find "God" in Buddhism. See, for a far better translation: viewtopic.php?f=13&t=7672&p=121833#p121798
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.
"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby Aloka » Sat Mar 12, 2011 10:50 am

tiltbillings wrote:
Aloka wrote:
The Theravadins like the term 'the unconditioned' and there are many references to this : "There is an unborn, unconditioned, uncreated, unoriginated. If there were not the unborn, unconditioned, uncreated, unoriginated,there would be no escape from the born, the conditioned, the created, the originated."

This is, I think, one of the most profound statements ever made. It is so very simple and so very clear.

And I think it is utter nonsense, and actually this passage appears twice in the suttas. What could it possibly mean? This text often gets pressed into sevice by those who want find "God" in Buddhism. See, for a far better translation: viewtopic.php?f=13&t=7672&p=121833#p121798



I'm not very clear about what you mean in terms of Ajahn Sumedho's comments,Tilt. Are you suggesting that he is talking nonsense too ? 'The Unconditioned' to me obviously means freedom from the conditioned - so I don't see what the problem is.
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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby Alex123 » Sat Mar 12, 2011 1:51 pm

Tilt,

tiltbillings wrote:What is clear is that there is no way to measure what is trackless. Remains, does not remain, both remains and does not remain, and neither remains nor does not remain do not apply. All just lost in words. You can bend your self into pretzels over this, but I see no reason to not take the Buddha seriously.


Are there any form, feelings, perception, volition, or consciousness for "what is trackless" ?
Are there any form, feelings, perception, volition, or consciousness that is left permanently in parinibbāna?


With metta,

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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Mar 12, 2011 3:16 pm

Aloka wrote:
I'm not very clear about what you mean in terms of Ajahn Sumedho's comments,Tilt. Are you suggesting that he is talking nonsense too ? 'The Unconditioned' to me obviously means freedom from the conditioned - so I don't see what the problem is.
The translation is utter nonsense. Why use a clumsy translation?
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Mar 12, 2011 3:21 pm

Alex123 wrote:Tilt,

tiltbillings wrote:What is clear is that there is no way to measure what is trackless. Remains, does not remain, both remains and does not remain, and neither remains nor does not remain do not apply. All just lost in words. You can bend your self into pretzels over this, but I see no reason to not take the Buddha seriously.


Are there any form, feelings, perception, volition, or consciousness for "what is trackless" ?
Are there any form, feelings, perception, volition, or consciousness that is left permanently in parinibbāna?


With metta,

Alex
You can ask this question in countless ways, the answer is the same.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby Alex123 » Sat Mar 12, 2011 3:51 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
Alex123 wrote:Tilt,

tiltbillings wrote:What is clear is that there is no way to measure what is trackless. Remains, does not remain, both remains and does not remain, and neither remains nor does not remain do not apply. All just lost in words. You can bend your self into pretzels over this, but I see no reason to not take the Buddha seriously.


Are there any form, feelings, perception, volition, or consciousness for "what is trackless" ?
Are there any form, feelings, perception, volition, or consciousness that is left permanently in parinibbāna?


With metta,

Alex
You can ask this question in countless ways, the answer is the same.



So, what is the answer?
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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby Alex123 » Sat Mar 12, 2011 4:12 pm

AdvaitaJ wrote:Having read Ajahn Brahm's book, Mindfulness, Bliss and Beyond, this question keeps haunting me. With parinibbana described as the remainder-less cessation of everything, what is the difference between that and annihilation? I understand that as long as you're subject to rebirth, annihilation is wrong view. What I don't understand is how the results are different when you're no longer subject to rebirth. Everything ceases, right? The flame is extinguished, out, gone. It didn't go anywhere, it's just gone. So, how is this different from annihilation? :?:

Regards: AdvaitaJ


Are you assuming that annihilation (if parinibbāna was that) is bad? What is so wrong with that?

The reason why parinibbāna is not annihilation is because:

1) There is no ultimately existing Self to be annihilated in the first place.
2) There is no eternal "mind" (citta), "mentality" (mano) or "consciousness" (viññāṇa) to get annihilated.
3) There is nothing ultimately pleasant (sukha) that ceases.

Generally, ordinary people who hold materialistic (and perhaps atheistic views) assume Self to be one, some or all of the aggregates. Most often they assume this body and/or this particular "mind" to be the Self. Since this body ceases with death, and they believe that mind will permanently cease as well, they end up with the belief that Self ceases at death.


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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Mar 12, 2011 4:53 pm

Alex123 wrote:So, what is the answer?
Already given to you above.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby Alex123 » Sat Mar 12, 2011 5:15 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
Alex123 wrote:So, what is the answer?
Already given to you above.



You mean
tiltbillings wrote:
What is clear is that there is no way to measure what is trackless. Remains, does not remain, both remains and does not remain, and neither remains nor does not remain do not apply. All just lost in words. You can bend your self into pretzels over this, but I see no reason to not take the Buddha seriously.
viewtopic.php?f=13&t=1039&start=100#p121802


I've heard it all before about God being indescribable, beyond all words, and all the hindu talk about being beyond all words/dualities and descriptions. Non-manifest consciousness, the ground of all being, etc etc, was said by others.


Fortunately the Buddha was clear:
"there is no form... no feeling... no perception... there are no fabrications... there is no consciousness that is constant, lasting, eternal, not subject to change, that will stay just as it is as long as eternity". - SN 22.97
"The body disintegrated, perception ceased, pain & rapture were entirely consumed, fabrications were stilled: consciousness (Viññāṇaṃ) has come to its end.” – Ud 8.9

The difficulty is in accepting this strait description. Craving to be, even in some indescribable way (Remains, does not remain, both remains and does not remain, and neither remains nor does not remain do not apply), is strong.
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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Mar 12, 2011 5:33 pm

Alex123 wrote: The difficulty is in accepting this strait description. Craving to be, even in some indescribable way (Remains, does not remain, both remains and does not remain, and neither remains nor does not remain do not apply), is strong.
There is no difficulty in accepting what the Buddha said. I am simply not limiting my choice of his words the way you are.

The five aggregates contains only conditioned dhammas by defintion of "aggregate"-- there cannot be an aggregate of cessation, or an aggregate of nibbana. By contrast, the twelve ayatanas can and do contain "all" experience, including Nibbana (when there is cessation of greed, hatred, and delusion), thusly, "The All."

"Whoever frees himself from the passions of greed, hatred, and ignorance, they call him, one who is self developed, made divine, thus-gone (tathagata), awake (buddha), one who has left fear and hatred, and one who has let go of all." Itivuttaka 57

Since a tathagata, even when actually present, is incomprehensible, it is inept to say of him – of the Uttermost Person, the Supernal Person, the Attainer of the Supernal – that after death the tathagata is, or is not, or both is and is not, or neither is nor is not SN III 118.

You are still stuck trying to define the Buddha/awakening in terms of the conditioned, the aggregates, which is why arguing with you is not really positive use of time.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby Alex123 » Sat Mar 12, 2011 6:16 pm

Tilt,
tiltbillings wrote:You are still stuck trying to define the Buddha/awakening in terms of the conditioned, the aggregates, which is why arguing with you is not really positive use of time.


I do not define the Buddha as being in or outside of the aggregates. Thus no annihilationism and no suicide stuff that you've called my post.

tiltbillings wrote:
Alex123 wrote:. . .
Oh, dear, back to your it is suicide stuff again.
viewtopic.php?f=13&t=1039&start=60#p121750




Tilt, do you believe the Buddha is not part of conditioned aggregates?

How can anything, anyone, whatever describable or not, reasonably be postulated when 5 aggregates and ALL consciousness ceases at parinibbāna?

It seems to me that you consciously or subconsciously postulating survive of some indescribable sort, even without 5 aggregates. But there isn't anything (describable or not) that is eternal, etc.
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Re: Is the result of Parinibbana Annihilation?

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Mar 12, 2011 6:24 pm

Alex123 wrote:It seems to me that you consciously or subconsciously postulating survive of some indescribable sort, even without 5 aggregates. But there isn't anything (describable or not) that is eternal, etc.
This one of the reason why I am not going to deal with you. You keep trying to play this game of what motivates what others say, which is why I could just as easily say that your limited interpretation is driven by your preoccupation with suicide.

But to address your point, I am not postulating anything. As for "anything that is eternal," that is not an issue. You may want to frame it in those terms, but I am not.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.
"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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