Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Jul 16, 2010 8:37 am

Greetings,

PeterB wrote:If I can reply on behalf of Paul.. :smile:

Yeah, you'd better... 'cos I'm keeping out of this one. :D

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)
User avatar
retrofuturist
Site Admin
 
Posts: 14622
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby Shonin » Fri Jul 16, 2010 8:45 am

Wind wrote:The Buddha defines some of the powers in the suttas. He not only demonstrated them but he also listed the type of psychic powers that are available through jhanas. I can't recall which suttas so can't provide the links. You'll gonna have to search it and read it for yourself.

And although some powers are mention in the Suttas, it is better not to speculate the extent of his powers as it has been mentioned earlier that would be a waste of time.


Your logic is: it is mentioned in some texts that were written down some 2300 years ago from originals (now lost) of texts that were transcribed from an oral tradition that continued some 100-200 years after Buddha's death. This isn't proof of anything. There are many fantastical tales that come out of the Indian sub-continent even now.
Shonin
 
Posts: 583
Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2010 5:11 am

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby PeterB » Fri Jul 16, 2010 8:47 am

Sorry Paul..I thought that as grasshopper appeared to be answering mine and quoting it that there was a Peter/Paul mix up. I blame those Popes..
PeterB
 
Posts: 3904
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 12:35 pm

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby PeterB » Fri Jul 16, 2010 8:54 am

Shonin wrote:
Wind wrote:The Buddha defines some of the powers in the suttas. He not only demonstrated them but he also listed the type of psychic powers that are available through jhanas. I can't recall which suttas so can't provide the links. You'll gonna have to search it and read it for yourself.

And although some powers are mention in the Suttas, it is better not to speculate the extent of his powers as it has been mentioned earlier that would be a waste of time.


Your logic is: it is mentioned in some texts that were written down some 2300 years ago from originals (now lost) of texts that were transcribed from an oral tradition that continued some 100-200 years after Buddha's death. This isn't proof of anything. There are many fantastical tales that come out of the Indian sub-continent even now.

What is unique to Buddhadhamma is D.O The 4NT the 8FP.etc They are not found anywhere else.
Iddhis, Devas, supernatural elephants etc are found in Jainism as well as the various Vedic religions and so on.
All described and portrayed in just the same way.
Personally I am amazed that anyone confronted with the sheer beauty and elegance and profundity of the doctrine of Dependant Origination should want custard with it.
PeterB
 
Posts: 3904
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 12:35 pm

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby Shonin » Fri Jul 16, 2010 9:32 am

grasshopper wrote:If supernatural skills are undigestable, then I am not sure how rebirth, moving across different realms in different lives, delayed workings of karma-vipaka and nibbana itself can be digestable. They all, at least to me, seem like from the same basket. Just for the record though, according to scripture, flying in air and through walls is not a skill unique to Buddhas.


My acceptance and practice of Dhamma is not dependent on pure-faith-based belief in any unverified phenomena. However, Nibbana can be glimpsed in this life. Whether there is such a thing as 'final nibbana' I can't be certain, but eliminating ignorance, craving, aversion and suffering here and now in this life is enough for me to practice.

In short: it works! I don't need to wait until my next life or until I gain the power of flight in order to find that out. :smile:
Shonin
 
Posts: 583
Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2010 5:11 am

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby grasshopper » Fri Jul 16, 2010 12:01 pm

Haha...my apologies guys for the Paul/Peter mix up. I have no idea where the name Paul came up; may an unknown retrospective influence from a futurist. :rofl:

Being an agnostic, I neither accept these flying stories/rebirth/nibbana stories nor reject them. Was merely trying to prove a point that they could be in the same league, so to speak. But you know, fantastical stories come out of all continents. One American fantasy story was: Iraq has Weapons of Mass Destruction :tongue: An Australian one: John Howards candidacy for the ICC Presidentship/Vice-presidentship hehe.
grasshopper
 
Posts: 51
Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 4:40 am
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby Shonin » Fri Jul 16, 2010 1:40 pm

PeterB wrote:Personally I am amazed that anyone confronted with the sheer beauty and elegance and profundity of the doctrine of Dependant Origination should want custard with it.


Interesting that you should say that, as personally I find aspects of it rather hard to make sense of. But that's another topic I think.
Shonin
 
Posts: 583
Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2010 5:11 am

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby kc2dpt » Fri Jul 16, 2010 1:44 pm

Shonin wrote:Who gets to define what powers he does and does not have?

He does. He talks about his powers in the scriptures.
Let me ask you a counter question:
Why do YOU get to take away the powers he said he had?
- Peter

Be heedful and you will accomplish your goal.
User avatar
kc2dpt
 
Posts: 956
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 3:48 pm

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby Shonin » Fri Jul 16, 2010 2:11 pm

Peter wrote:Why do YOU get to take away the powers he said he had?


I didn't. Saying something is or is not the case and it being the case are not the same. Arguments based purely on the authority of the speaker are vacuous.

My turn: do you really have as much problem with the concepts of evidence and fallibility as your question would imply? What gives you the power to take away Santa Clause's existence?
Shonin
 
Posts: 583
Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2010 5:11 am

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby Anicca » Fri Jul 16, 2010 3:50 pm

Howdy All!
Couldn't find the Santa Claus Sutta but regardless the (fact or folklore) of supernatural powers and beings permeates the suttas. There is a reason that monks were banned from the public display of said (powers or flights of fantasy):
Of all the abhiññas, only the power to end the asava was central to the cessation of suffering.

In the following sutta Buddha both praises their use and condemns their distraction. They could be used to enhance instruction and condemned to confound the public. If we stay central to the teachings there is no need to enter into these arguments - why waste the time and energy?

I believe the devisiveness displayed in this thread underscores the genius of the Buddha when he says:

Seeing this drawback to the miracle of psychic power, Kevatta, I feel horrified, humiliated, and disgusted with the miracle of psychic power.


DN 11 Kevatta (Kevaddha) Sutta: To Kevatta

Metta
Anicca
 
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 4:11 am
Location: Edmond, Oklahoma

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby PeterB » Fri Jul 16, 2010 4:00 pm

I agree. There simply is no point arguing about the existence of that which even if it exists the Buddha himself said is not condusive to Enlightenment. It seems to just descend into point scoring on a point of principle.
Iddhis, Devas, non human Rebirth ...no one one was ever Enlightened by the consideration of such matters. And I think it safe to assume that one one was ever prevented from Enlightenment by a lack of consideration of such issues.
PeterB
 
Posts: 3904
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 12:35 pm

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby kc2dpt » Sat Jul 17, 2010 1:11 am

I think the OP question is a fair one and I'm glad to see it has received some intelligent speculation in reply. I like most the answer regarding focusing his efforts to establish a community. That makes good sense to me.

I think answering with "Because it was too far to walk, dummy" is unhelpful and, frankly, infantile. If you don't want to talk about Buddha powers as they are described in the scriptures then no one is forcing you. There are lots of other threads you can participate in.
- Peter

Be heedful and you will accomplish your goal.
User avatar
kc2dpt
 
Posts: 956
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 3:48 pm

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby retrofuturist » Sat Jul 17, 2010 1:27 am

Greetings Shonin,

Shonin wrote:
Peter wrote:Why do YOU get to take away the powers he said he had?


I didn't. Saying something is or is not the case and it being the case are not the same. Arguments based purely on the authority of the speaker are vacuous.

My turn: do you really have as much problem with the concepts of evidence and fallibility as your question would imply? What gives you the power to take away Santa Clause's existence?

I understand the point you're trying to make here with regards to argumentation, but the reality is that the Sutta Pitaka is considered authoritative (either in full, or at least most of it) by the majority of Theravadins, and to that extent, it is perfectly legitimate for people to construct arguments from it in the General Theravada forum. In this sub-forum there needn't be any onus on participants to justify the validity of direct sutta references or examples which they draw from the suttas. If you don't consider them authoritative then that's for you to decide for yourself in accordance with your own personal criteria - but be mindful that others don't need to share your criteria.

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)
User avatar
retrofuturist
Site Admin
 
Posts: 14622
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby Shonin » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:42 am

retrofuturist wrote:I understand the point you're trying to make here with regards to argumentation, but the reality is that the Sutta Pitaka is considered authoritative (either in full, or at least most of it) by the majority of Theravadins, and to that extent, it is perfectly legitimate for people to construct arguments from it in the General Theravada forum. In this sub-forum there needn't be any onus on participants to justify the validity of direct sutta references or examples which they draw from the suttas. If you don't consider them authoritative then that's for you to decide for yourself in accordance with your own personal criteria - but be mindful that others don't need to share your criteria.


My interest is primarily in reality itself, thus I don't consider any text or authority figure infallible. (Nor, did the Buddha BTW, see the Kalama Sutta). Evidence for me is cumulative and cross-referenced.

I was simply responding to the question "Why do YOU get to take away the powers he said he had?". And I did so of course according to the principles of argument that I employ. I have not insisted that the onus is on anyone else to do anything nor have I insisted that others share my criteria. (Being limited to scriptural argumentation is, I would argue, why Buddha not teaching around the world seems to be puzzling in the first place). So this is not a case of me being intolerant or failing to understand other people's criteria as you say. Of course I am going to respond in terms of the criteria that I employ - is this not acceptable?
Last edited by Shonin on Sat Jul 17, 2010 8:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
Shonin
 
Posts: 583
Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2010 5:11 am

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby retrofuturist » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:45 am

Greetings Shonin,

Shonin wrote:I have not insisted that the onus is in anyone else to do anything not have I insisted that others share my criteria. (Being limited to scriptural argumentation is, I would argue, why Buddha not teaching around the world seems to be puzzling in the first place). So this is not a case of me being intolerant or failing to understand other people's criteria as you say. Of course I am going to respond in terms of the criteria that I employ - is this not acceptable?

Using that Santa Claus analogy as if it was equally applicable was pushing it, that's all.

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)
User avatar
retrofuturist
Site Admin
 
Posts: 14622
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby Shonin » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:52 am

Peter wrote:I think the OP question is a fair one and I'm glad to see it has received some intelligent speculation in reply. I like most the answer regarding focusing his efforts to establish a community. That makes good sense to me.

I think answering with "Because it was too far to walk, dummy" is unhelpful and, frankly, infantile. If you don't want to talk about Buddha powers as they are described in the scriptures then no one is forcing you. There are lots of other threads you can participate in.


Your response smacks of intolerance. The OP did not specify that he/she was only looking for answers that assumed the literal truth of 'Buddha powers' as described in the suttas. It is rude and intolerant to suggest that I shouldn't be posting here because my criteria of evidence are not the same as yours.

That Buddha was biologically human and probably did not have the magical powers of rapid flight and/or teleportation is a very efficient explanation and one that I don't think I'm alone in considering helpful.
Last edited by Shonin on Sat Jul 17, 2010 8:20 am, edited 1 time in total.
Shonin
 
Posts: 583
Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2010 5:11 am

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby Shonin » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:53 am

retrofuturist wrote:Using that Santa Claus analogy as if it was equally applicable was pushing it, that's all.


It was the only well-known untruth that I was confident Peter would argree with me on, and which would serve as an example for my point. I'm sorry if it came across as mockery, nevertheless the logic was valid. I didn't say it was or was not equally valid - it was a logical point I was making with regards to Peter's question: challenging the evidence for something is not 'taking it away'.
Shonin
 
Posts: 583
Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2010 5:11 am

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby PeterB » Sat Jul 17, 2010 9:02 am

Shonin wrote:
Peter wrote:I think the OP question is a fair one and I'm glad to see it has received some intelligent speculation in reply. I like most the answer regarding focusing his efforts to establish a community. That makes good sense to me.

I think answering with "Because it was too far to walk, dummy" is unhelpful and, frankly, infantile. If you don't want to talk about Buddha powers as they are described in the scriptures then no one is forcing you. There are lots of other threads you can participate in.


Your response smacks of intolerance. The OP did not specify that he/she was only looking for answers that assumed the literal truth of 'Buddha powers' as described in the suttas. It is rude and intolerant to suggest that I shouldn't be posting here because my criteria of evidence are not the same as yours.

That Buddha was biologically human and probably did not have the magical powers of rapid flight and/or teleportation is a very efficient explanation and one that I don't think I'm alone in considering helpful.


I happen to agree with your conclusions Shonin. I think that paradoxically, to project powers of magical flight etc onto the Buddha actually lessens him and his Dhamma considerably and turns it into a freak show. However I don't think that Peter's post "smacks of intolerance"..we are dealing with an aspect of Theravadin doctrine where a spectrum of belief is found, and where the expression of that belief is to be encouraged from all sides, because every pov will be helpful to someone.
The Buddha having or not having Iddhis is hardly of the essence after all, but a belief that he did might encourage some to look for what IS the essence.
PeterB
 
Posts: 3904
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 12:35 pm

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby somo » Fri Jul 23, 2010 7:10 pm

in the story , all the buddhas were rebirth in india. india is the good place to start teaching. and before Bodhisattwa will rebirth. he will choose his mother and father(only king or Brahma). and when Bodhisattwa were rebirth. as the same time many people who did the good karma in the past were rebirth at that time. this is the one reason that the buddha didn't teach the other place. could the buddha go the places where was very far from india? yes! the buddha could do. please you don't forget that the buddha has 6 Abhinna.

http://encyclopedia2.thefreedictionary.com/Abhinna

why didn't the buddha do?

the main reason that the buddha has no craving. so that a little time , the buddha did the magic power. and because did not have the craving so that the buddha was not increase the people who believe. one time that i see , the buddha did the magic power. when to help angulimala. that time angulimala wanted to kill 1000 persons at time he killed and cut the fingers 999 person. only one person he wanted to kill again. and the time the king wanted to catch him like a prisoner. the mother of angulimala knew the king might kill angulimala. she went to the place where angulimala to stay. buddha knew by 6 Abhinna. angulimala might kill his mother because angulimala did the bad karma. the bad karma was control his mind. buddha knew angulimala had the lake of awareness. that time he forgot who was mother? buddha knew angulimala might kill his mother. the buddha wanted to stop him before killed his mother. buddha did check angulimala by 6 Abhinna. in the past before rebirth angulimala ever did a lot of good karma. buddha knew he could be arahat in the next time. and when angulimala saw the buddha. angulimala would kill the buddha. budda knew his mind and waiting by did to use the magic power by walk very fast until angulimala could not follow. okay i posted on utube that english version and thai version follow the link below:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_UBvLH2BwY


:zzz:
*happiness=pain,h/p=1,mind=1,suffering=p*t(time of craving)*
*real happiness will not change to the pain later*
*h^max=p^max..p can solves by decreases..h*

Buddha animation cartoon
User avatar
somo
 
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Jul 21, 2010 12:57 am

Re: Why didn't the Buddha teach around the world?

Postby EricJ » Sat Jul 24, 2010 2:17 am

Vakkali Sutta wrote:"O Vakkali, whoever sees the Dhamma, sees me."


This answer is a bit of a cop-out, but I find it satisfactory. The Dhamma, unlike the physical body of a Buddha, is "timeless" and is "to be realized by the wise for themselves" regardless of whether or not the Buddha is physically present and expounding it. I tend to think that it takes root in people who are kammically inclined towards it, and I think the Buddha probably recognized this. I think that the Buddha fulfilled his purpose whenever he brought knowledge of the Dhamma to the world for the benefit of all. To use a cliche simile, his teachings in the Indian subcontinent were like a seed which sprouted and branched out. And, if you think about it, the subcontinent was an excellent place for his exposition of the Dhamma to occur. It is a region which is uniquely positioned (geographically, linguistically, and culturally) in the middle of European and Asiatic civilization. It may have taken time, but the Dhamma has gradually spread, and continues to spread, across the world where those who are predisposed to it will recognize it for its truth.


Regards,
Eric
I do not want my house to be walled in on sides and my windows to be stuffed. I want the cultures of all the lands to be blown about my house as freely as possible. But I refuse to be blown off my feet by any.- Gandhi

With persistence aroused for the highest goal's attainment, with mind unsmeared, not lazy in action, firm in effort, with steadfastness & strength arisen, wander alone like a rhinoceros.

Not neglecting seclusion, absorption, constantly living the Dhamma in line with the Dhamma, comprehending the danger in states of becoming, wander alone like a rhinoceros.
- Snp. 1.3
User avatar
EricJ
 
Posts: 122
Joined: Mon Sep 14, 2009 2:38 am
Location: Portland, OR

Previous

Return to General Theravāda discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: cooran and 19 guests