How common is stream entry?

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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby IanAnd » Mon Jun 24, 2013 2:51 am

Mr Man wrote:Well the realization could be something that develops and deepens (over time) and it could be a deepening in faith (see IanAnd's earlier post) rather than a moment of insight into the nature of self. Possibly the manifestation is not consistent.

Just to be clear here. Contrary to Mr. Man's perception about what I wrote, I would not describe what I was talking about as a "deepening in faith" but rather a moment of recognition of "this is it!" Faith, to me in this sense, implies a kind of not-knowingness, an acceptance without knowing. In the sense in which I am speaking here, a moment of recognition is a moment of realization of factual knowledge, a recognition of a truth that one has previous to that moment not seen or realized. Words can only approximate the experience, and therefore are often inadequate to convey its poignancy.

When I say "a realization of factual knowledge" I mean actual first hand knowingness itelf. Indisputable knowing or knowledge! In the same way that Gotama realized his own freedom through having realized nibbana having sat and realized it under the Bodhi tree. I don't know how much more precise and specific I can be than this. If you want to call it a fruition, then call it a fruition. I call it realization.

In the moment that this realization occurred to me (it was in 2001), I KNEW that following the noble eightfold path would work to alleviate dukkha because this was virtually the same thing that had been taught me while in the religious Order. In the Order, however, all the details of how to accomplish this were left out (not divulged, kept from me), and it was only by reacquainting myself with (and deeply pondering) the path laid out by the noble eightfold path (as well as in the discourses where the details were expressed) that I realized "Yes, this WILL work! This IS what I've been searching for!" There was absolute knowingness and certainty. Doubt was not even on the radar screen in that moment! Doubt was non-existent.

This was the moment (to my way of thinking) I entered the stream. It was indisputable! And it didn't matter what anyone else's opinion was! I KNEW! In the very same way that Gotama KNEW!

Alex123 wrote:
This is what I am thinking myself. What if fetters, for most of us, slowly fade from 100% to 0% rather than go from 100% to 0% in two micro moments.

From my reading of the discourses, there are instances where people that Gotama met were described and pronounced to have become stream enterers or arahants who very quickly died shortly thereafter. There was no way for anyone to independently confirm what these people knew or didn't know prior to the moment of demise. And yet these pronouncements are accepted as established fact by followers of the faith. I find that to be an incredible jump to a conclusion, and one which, I don't think, even Gotama would approve were he alive to weigh in on this issue.

If you stop for a moment to think about this from an experiential perspective, and realize that your mind has been through an incredible amount of programming (conditioning) starting from the moment you were born and came into the world right up to this present moment. To expect that a moment of self-realization is going to instantly and quite miraculously wipe out all of that programming (conditioning) is quite astonishing and unrealistic! I mean, how many people do you personally know to whom this has occurred? I would venture to say that most (if not all) of you would say: No one! So, it is not realistic to expect to clear out the asavas in one fell swoop (so to speak), but rather over time in the same way that the programming (conditioning) was induced to become in place. This is not to say that it doesn't make this process easier to achieve (the clearing out of the asavas, that is), it does. But one asava at a time; not all in one fell swoop.

I'm referring here also to instances of realizing selflessness. Rooting out conceit (the most subtle instance of selfhood) is an ongoing process that takes time before no reaction pattern shows up on the radar screen of one's mind. It's going to show up in big ways and small, and you just have to become aware of its appearance in each instance and let go of it. That's how you root out conceit. There's no magic here; just hard and diligent mental work.
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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby Mr Man » Mon Jun 24, 2013 7:26 am

Hi IanAnd
Thanks for the clarification. The point I was trying to get at was that your realization (as described) seems more to do with path (putting aside doubt) rather than "nothing that can be taken as "true self" (See Zom's earlier post). The manifestation (or emphasis) seems different. Do you think that how "stream entry" is perceived is conditioned by our underlying tendencies?
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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby Spiny Norman » Mon Jun 24, 2013 8:49 am

Zom wrote:
How is there conceit without a sense of self?


There is no conceit without a sense of self. But there is a conceit without self-views.


I'm not sure I follow. If we're talking about the conceit "I am", isn't this the same as self-view?
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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Jun 24, 2013 8:50 am

Greetings,

Spiny Norman wrote:I'm not sure I follow. If we're talking about the conceit "I am", isn't this the same as self-view?

No, the "I am" conceit is asmi-mana.

http://what-buddha-said.net/library/DPP ... _maana.htm

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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)


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


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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby Spiny Norman » Mon Jun 24, 2013 8:54 am

Zom wrote:Can't answer about "orthodox or not", but concerning this:

And practically speaking, how would one recognise somebody with:
(i) no self-view;
(ii) weakened self-view?


- this is a difficult question, because many people do not speak about their self-views, simply because they just don't have them formulated, "vebalized" (because usually there is just no need for that). But they still have them, ofc. And if you will speak with them about this particular matter, you may hear them say - "Yes, I think that I'm this, I'm that, I'm my body, I'm my will, I'm my consciousness" and so on. If we are speaking about determining this in yourself by yourself, this is also aint easy to detect for 100%, simply because you may remove superficial clinging to such views, but the root will still be intact (in suttas this root is called "anusaya", underlying tendency).


I was thinking of it more on a practical day-to-day level. I've found from experience that I tend to experience a sense of self most strongly when I feel threatened in some way. So for example if I feel criticised, I might get defensive. My assumption is that I had overcome self-view, then I wouldn't react in this way. Does that make sense?
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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby Spiny Norman » Mon Jun 24, 2013 8:58 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings,

Spiny Norman wrote:I'm not sure I follow. If we're talking about the conceit "I am", isn't this the same as self-view?

No, the "I am" conceit is asmi-mana.

http://what-buddha-said.net/library/DPP ... _maana.htm

Metta,
Retro. :)


So is sakkāya-ditthi a symptom of asmi-mana?
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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Jun 24, 2013 9:05 am

Greetings Spiny,

Spiny Norman wrote:So is sakkāya-ditthi a symptom of asmi-mana?

I wouldn't put it that way, because the stream entrant has eradicated sakkāya-ditthi, yet has asmi-mana until arahantship.

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


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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby mikenz66 » Mon Jun 24, 2013 9:12 am

Hi Spiny:

See this entry on the fetters eliminated on the path:
http://what-buddha-said.net/library/Bud ... ya-puggala
Stream entry:
1: Personality-belief sakkāya-ditthi
....
Arahantship:
...
8: Conceit and pride māna
...

And the sutta I quoted above: viewtopic.php?f=13&t=5352&start=340#p250497
where Ven Khemaka talks about how he has eliminated sakkāya-ditthi, but not māna:
'I am' has not been overcome, although I don't assume that 'I am this.'


:anjali:
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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby Zom » Mon Jun 24, 2013 9:27 am

I'm not sure I follow. If we're talking about the conceit "I am", isn't this the same as self-view?


These are different. Self-view (sakkaya-ditthi) is the 1st, "lowest" samsara fetter, eradicted by a fruit of stream-entry, while conceit (mana) is the 10th, highest samsara fetter, eradicted by a fruit of arahantship. Between them there can lie a practice for 7 full lifetimes. So removing a conceit is much much harder than to remove a self-view. Conceit is like the roots, while self-view is like a foliage. Stream-entry is like a blow on the roots in such a way, that no foliage will ever appear, but the tree is still alive - though injured badly and because of that in "7 lifetimes" it will dry up and roots will perish -)

To speak more straight, self-view is ditthi, opinions, conceptions. Not more than that. For example, you have an opinion, that "This city is great and the best of all". This is ditthi. Due to some reasons you formed such a view. Later on, due to some other reasons, you may drop this ditthi and pick up another one, like: "That another city is the best in the world". And even keep clinging to this view for some prolonged period of time. In the suttas some people had such ditthi as: "I think that this world is not infinite" - or "I think it is infinite". These are also ditthi. And now self-view is also such ditthi - "I think, that my self - is that my consciousness. It is this consciousness will flow on and on and enter nibbana, going out of space and time (c)" -) Now this is view about self. Just an opinion, which you can grasp tightly. Or, for example, some pretty girl may say: "This my sexy body is my self, of course, and this is me, this is mine, this is what I am". May she? She may -) Quite rough self-view, but still - sakkaya-ditthi. Some mystic or esoteric may say thus: "Real "me" exists out of this body and even out of this mind, it is indecribable, there is no possibility to detect it!". Quite cool, philosophical and sublime self-view. But still - this is an opinion about "self".

And the conceit is another thing, it is more about "experience and feeling yourself" rather than pondering, thinking and imaginating. When some abuses you, you can feel "aggrieved ego" if you look carefully inside. This feeling can be strong, or it can be shallow, but that's it - this is a conceit. Extremely hard to remove this thing )
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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby acinteyyo » Mon Jun 24, 2013 10:13 am

Spiny Norman wrote:
retrofuturist wrote:Greetings,

Spiny Norman wrote:I'm not sure I follow. If we're talking about the conceit "I am", isn't this the same as self-view?

No, the "I am" conceit is asmi-mana.

http://what-buddha-said.net/library/DPP ... _maana.htm

Metta,
Retro. :)


So is sakkāya-ditthi a symptom of asmi-mana?


I hope this helps.

sakkāya-ditthi (personality-view) is the view that there is a self to be found in the pañc'upādāna-kkhandha. Having the view or believing that what constitutes "my personality" is one, more or all of the five clinging-aggregates, i.e. form, feeling etc. (pañc'upādāna-kkhandha). sakkāya-ditthi does not come about by not assuming the pañc'upādāna-kkhandha as being the self. but asmi māna, the conceit "I am" persists as long as there is craving (upādāna). Although one doesn't consider the pañc'upādāna-kkhandha as self, knowing that "I am" is a delusion, it still seems that I am as long as there is upādāna. Only by overcoming and letting go of upādāna the conceit "I am" ceases completely.
Culavedalla Sutta - MN44 wrote:"But, lady, how does self-identification come about?"

"There is the case, friend Visakha, where an uninstructed, run-of-the-mill person — who has no regard for noble ones, is not well-versed or disciplined in their Dhamma; who has no regard for men of integrity, is not well-versed or disciplined in their Dhamma — assumes form (the body) to be the self, or the self as possessing form, or form as in the self, or the self as in form.

"He assumes feeling to be the self...

"He assumes perception to be the self...

"He assumes (mental) fabrications to be the self...

"He assumes consciousness to be the self, or the self as possessing consciousness, or consciousness as in the self, or the self as in consciousness. This is how self-identification comes about."

"But, lady, how does self-identification not come about?"

"There is the case where a well-instructed disciple of the noble ones — who has regard for noble ones, is well-versed & disciplined in their Dhamma; who has regard for men of integrity, is well-versed & disciplined in their Dhamma — does not assume form to be the self, or the self as possessing form, or form as in the self, or the self as in form.

"He does not assume feeling to be the self...

"He does not assume perception to be the self...

"He does not assume fabrications to be the self...

"He does not assume consciousness to be the self, or the self as possessing consciousness, or consciousness as in the self, or the self as in consciousness. This is how self-identification does not come about."


Culavedalla Sutta - MN44 wrote:"The remainderless fading & cessation, renunciation, relinquishment, release, & letting go of that very craving: This, friend Visakha, is the cessation of self-identification described by the Blessed One."


best wishes, acinteyyo
Pubbe cāhaṃ bhikkhave, etarahi ca dukkhañceva paññāpemi, dukkhassa ca nirodhaṃ. (M.22)
Both formerly, monks, and now, it is just suffering that I make known and the ending of suffering.
Pathabyā ekarajjena, saggassa gamanena vā sabbalokādhipaccena, sotāpattiphalaṃ varaṃ. (Dhp 178)
Sole dominion over the earth, going to heaven or lordship over all worlds: the fruit of stream-entry excels them.

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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby Alex123 » Mon Jun 24, 2013 11:33 am

IanAnd wrote:
Alex123 wrote:
This is what I am thinking myself. What if fetters, for most of us, slowly fade from 100% to 0% rather than go from 100% to 0% in two micro moments.

From my reading of the discourses, there are instances where people that Gotama met were described and pronounced to have become stream enterers or arahants who very quickly died shortly thereafter.


Yes, there were few people who instantly realized this or that stage upon mere hearing. But thousands did not even though they lived under the Buddha himself. Something tells me that if one doesn't instantly upon reading the suttas and/or listening to Dhamma Talk becomes Aryan, then the path will, obviously, take longer than an instant.
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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Jun 24, 2013 11:35 am

Greetings,

Alex123 wrote:Something tells me that if one doesn't instantly upon reading the suttas and/or listening to Dhamma Talk becomes Aryan, then the path will, obviously, take longer than an instant.

On the flipside, all the bhikkhus in the Mahaparinibbana Sutta were ariya of different degrees.

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


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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby Alex123 » Mon Jun 24, 2013 11:39 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings,

Alex123 wrote:Something tells me that if one doesn't instantly upon reading the suttas and/or listening to Dhamma Talk becomes Aryan, then the path will, obviously, take longer than an instant.

On the flipside, all the bhikkhus in the Mahaparinibbana Sutta were ariya of different degrees.

Metta,
Retro. :)



Those who didn't disrobe priorly, and this is at the end of Buddha's 45 years of teaching... For most people it took longer than nano-second.
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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby IanAnd » Mon Jun 24, 2013 3:12 pm

Mr Man wrote:Hi IanAnd
Do you think that how "stream entry" is perceived is conditioned by our underlying tendencies?

Okay, I'll explore this with you.

What underlying tendencies did you have in mind? And where did they have their beginning?
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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby Mr Man » Mon Jun 24, 2013 6:16 pm

Hi IanAnd
For example some people seem naturally to have a strong confidence so "a realization of factual knowledge" would not be a giant change or some people seem naturally to have a strong belief in the value of rites and rituals so a realization that these practices are non-efficacious would be a giant change. So depending on our natural tendencies the way that stream entry is perceived would differ.
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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby Viscid » Mon Jun 24, 2013 8:50 pm

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Spiny,

Spiny Norman wrote:So is sakkāya-ditthi a symptom of asmi-mana?

I wouldn't put it that way, because the stream entrant has eradicated sakkāya-ditthi, yet has asmi-mana until arahantship.

Metta,
Retro. :)


Wow, never knew asmi-mana existed. (I was conflating the two all along!) That makes claiming a lack of identity-view much easier.
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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby IanAnd » Tue Jun 25, 2013 12:19 am

Mr Man wrote:Hi IanAnd
For example some people seem naturally to have a strong confidence so "a realization of factual knowledge" would not be a giant change or some people seem naturally to have a strong belief in the value of rites and rituals so a realization that these practices are non-efficacious would be a giant change. So depending on our natural tendencies the way that stream entry is perceived would differ.


Hello Mr Man,

I'm not sure I follow where you are going with this. I don't think you understood my use of the phrase "a realization of factual knowledge."

By that phrase I mean: something that is indisputably and objectively true. Like, for instance, if I asked you to close your eyes and hold out your hand and spread your fingers. Then I asked you to open your eyes and tell me how many fingers you have spread. Your answer would be based on objectively looking at your hand and counting the fingers. Right?

What your proposal seems to be suggesting is that someone has confidence but not objective knowledge. How can one not have objective knowledge in the example I just gave? He cannot. Therefore, having great "confidence" or a "strong belief" is not the same as having objective first-hand knowledge.

Perhaps you were also confused by your perception about what I wrote. You said: "The point I was trying to get at was that your realization (as described) seems more to do with path (putting aside doubt) rather than 'nothing that can be taken as 'true self' (See Zom's earlier post)."

You perceived what I wrote wrongly. "Putting aside doubt" was not the main impetuous behind what I was saying. I just mentioned that because it happened to be a side effect. You apparently put too much emphasis on my saying so, thereby confusing what I was actually saying.

This is what I wrote: "Just to be clear here. Contrary to Mr. Man's perception about what I wrote, I would not describe what I was talking about as a 'deepening in faith' but rather a moment of recognition of 'this is it!' Faith, to me in this sense, implies a kind of not-knowingness, an acceptance without knowing." I also wrote: "When I say 'a realization of factual knowledge' I mean actual first hand knowingness itelf."

Confidence, faith, and belief are all of the same hue; i.e. they do not KNOW, they only accept a representation of the truth without knowing the truth. In other words, what they accept is not always true. See? What I was saying in my statement just proceeding is that I had indisputable objective proof. That's what I meant by saying "a moment of recognition of 'this is it.' " I went on to clarify that "Faith, to me in this sense, implies a kind of not-knowingness, and acceptance without knowing." I'm not sure how much clearer I could have been for you to have misperceived that.

What I'm saying is that your hypothesis is based on a faulty perception of what I said and what I meant.
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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby Mr Man » Tue Jun 25, 2013 7:03 am

IanAnd wrote:Hello Mr Man,

I'm not sure I follow where you are going with this.

Hi IanAnd
My point was that the experience (or realization or perception or whatever word one wishes to use) of stream entry is not consistent and will be perceived in different ways by different people due to their conditioning/disposition.
IanAnd wrote:What I'm saying is that your hypothesis is based on a faulty perception of what I said and what I meant.

I think you may be over emphasizing the importance of what you were saying to my hypothesis.
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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby Spiny Norman » Tue Jun 25, 2013 8:14 am

retrofuturist wrote:
Spiny Norman wrote:So is sakkāya-ditthi a symptom of asmi-mana?

I wouldn't put it that way, because the stream entrant has eradicated sakkāya-ditthi, yet has asmi-mana until arahantship.


Perhaps we're looking at different degrees of insight into anatta / anicca. So superficial insight disables sakkaya-ditthi, while deep insight disables asmi-mana?
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Re: How common is stream entry?

Postby retrofuturist » Tue Jun 25, 2013 8:21 am

Greetings Spiny.

I think your question is answered well by IanAnd's recent posts.

Metta
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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


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