Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

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Re: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:08 am

Greetings Tilt,

tiltbillings wrote:So, essentially, you are saying that the Buddha felt no need to speak at a level appropriate to an arahant.

Whilst under the hail of projectiles is hardly the environment for a suitably nuanced discussion. I mean, he calls him "brahman"... another word with both a conventional meaning and a nuanced Dhamma meaning. The phrase, as translated, is far more up for interpretation than you seem to infer.

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: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:13 am

Greetings acinteyyo,
acinteyyo wrote:The Buddha's teaching on kamma simply is that kamma bears fruits.
...
But a particular person possibly draws for example hate of locals as a fruit of action. Don't you think?

I think that's over-simplifying it. What you speak here is nothing other than conventional cause and effect... hardly a radical new and profound teaching.

acinteyyo wrote:The precise working "behind the scenes" (if there is any "behind" at all) is "acinteyya" - unthinkable

The precise explanatory workings (such as that what the commentators happen to venture in their writings), sure... I'd agree with you on that.

However, the Buddha taught that "Kamma should be known. The cause by which kamma comes into play should be known. The diversity in kamma should be known. The result of kamma should be known. The cessation of kamma should be known. The path of practice for the cessation of kamma should be known." (AN 6.63)

Therefore, the only reason anything would be "behind the scenes", would be because it remains obscured by lack of penetrative insight (i.e. the "cessation of kamma" which should be known, is not). To wipe our hands of any responsibility of understanding kamma and its fruit beyond it being some generic "law of cause and effect" seems to miss the point of the above sutta, or even frankly, the need for the Buddha to teach it in the first place.

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: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:23 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Tilt,

tiltbillings wrote:So, essentially, you are saying that the Buddha felt no need to speak at a level appropriate to an arahant.

While under the hail of projectiles is hardly the environment for a suitably nuanced discussion.

Metta,
Retro. :)
Except, the hail of projectiles was over; Ven Angulimala went to the Buddha after the fact. You are working really hard to to try to dismiss this text. The production of kamma is done for Angulimala; however, the fruit of past actions seems to linger.
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: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:25 am

Greetings Tilt,

tiltbillings wrote:however, the fruit of past actions seems to linger.

Technically, according to the Buddha's teachings on kamma, that cetana results in vipaka? Or conventionally, according to the common maxim a child could understand, that actions have consequences?

Which are you stating?

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: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:28 am

retrofuturist wrote:However, the Buddha taught that "Kamma should be known. The cause by which kamma comes into play should be known. The diversity in kamma should be known. The result of kamma should be known. The cessation of kamma should be known. The path of practice for the cessation of kamma should be known." (AN 6.63)
The cessation of kamma is action no longer driven by greed, hatred and delusion, but do show us that one, as an arahant, is totally free of the results of past action. Results. There is nothing in what you have quoted that states the results of all past action (kamma) has ceased.
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.

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Re: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:30 am

Greetings Tilt,

I'm still not clear on whether you're speaking technically about...

i) kamma(cetana)/vipaka
ii) "cause and effect"

Hence, I can't respond (yet)

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: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:36 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Tilt,

tiltbillings wrote:however, the fruit of past actions seems to linger.

Technically, according to the Buddha's teachings on kamma, that cetana results in vipaka? Or conventionally, according to the common maxim a child could understand, that actions have consequences?

Which are you stating?

Metta,
Retro. :)
Kamma is the Pali word for action. What I do based upon my cetana has consequences.

A. VI, 13: "Volition is action (karma), thus I say, o monks; for as soon as volition arises, one does the action, be it by body, speech or mind."
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.

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Re: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:37 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Tilt,

I'm still not clear on whether you're speaking technically about...

i) kamma(cetana)/vipaka
ii) "cause and effect"

Hence, I can't respond (yet)

Metta,
Retro. :)
You are taking kamma and vipaka as equivalent?
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.

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Re: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:48 am

retrofuturist wrote:[ NOTE: Split from http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=6353 ]

Greetings,

Regarding whether arahants experience vipaka or not...

"Listen, Udayi. A bhikkhu in this Teaching and Discipline cultivates the Mindfulness Enlightenment Factor ... the Equanimity Enlightenment Factor, which tend to seclusion, tend to dispassion, tend to cessation, which are well developed, which are boundless, void of irritation. Having cultivated the Mindfulness Enlightenment Factor ... the Equanimity Enlightenment Factor ... craving is discarded. With the discarding of craving, kamma is discarded. With the discarding of kamma, suffering is discarded. Thus, with the ending of craving there is the ending of kamma; with the ending of kamma there is the ending of suffering."
S.V.86 (S.19/450/123) - http://www.buddhanet.net/cmdsg/kamma9.htm#41

Arahants have discarded vipaka/suffering.
Where does it say here that vipaka IS suffering?
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.

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Re: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:51 am

Greetings Tilt,
tiltbillings wrote:You are taking kamma and vipaka as equivalent?

No, I'm regarding them as a pair, not as synonymous terms.

tiltbillings wrote:Kamma is the Pali word for action.

Yes.

tiltbillings wrote:What I do based upon my cetana has consequences.

That still doesn't answer the question.... conventional consequences, or technical vipaka consequences?

Let us take the example of unknowingly stepping on a slug.

It is an action (walking) and it has consequences (mooshy slug, sloppy sole of the shoe).

The walking was volitional - you chose to walk.

What do you say is the "fruit" in this situation... is it the mooshy slug and soggy sole, or is it nothing, because there was no intention to harm (i.e. no unwholesome mindstate)?

If you say the former, you're speaking conventionally - if you say the latter, you're speaking in the Dhammic sense.

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: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby mikenz66 » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:53 am

Hi Retro,

I really struggle to follow your arguments about kamma and loka.
retrofuturist wrote: I think the emphasis ought to be on vipaka being within loka, not outside loka... and clods, sticks, comets and such aren't within loka, as loka is defined by the Buddha. Only aggregates (which disintegrate) and senses (which disintegrate) are within loka.


So there is a world/all outside that which we experience? Are the clods not part of our experience?
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
"Insofar as it disintegrates,[2] monk, it is called the 'world.' Now what disintegrates? The eye disintegrates. Forms disintegrate. Consciousness at the eye disintegrates. Contact at the eye disintegrates. And whatever there is that arises in dependence on contact at the eye — experienced as pleasure, pain or neither-pleasure-nor-pain — that too disintegrates.
"The ear disintegrates. Sounds disintegrate...
...


http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
"What is the All? Simply the eye & forms, ear & sounds, nose & aromas, tongue & flavors, body & tactile sensations, intellect & ideas.

:anjali:
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Re: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby cooran » Mon Apr 04, 2011 9:02 am

retrofuturist wrote: Let us take the example of unknowingly stepping on a slug.

It is an action (walking) and it has consequences (mooshy slug, sloppy sole of the shoe).

The walking was volitional - you chose to walk.

What do you say is the "fruit" in this situation... is it the mooshy slug and soggy sole, or is it nothing, because there was no intention to harm (i.e. no unwholesome mindstate)?

If you say the former, you're speaking conventionally - if you say the latter, you're speaking in the Dhammic sense.

Metta,
Retro. :)


Hello Retro,

I don't think so.

Unintentional action is not kamma. If we accidently step on some ants while walking down the street, that is not the kamma of taking life, for there was no intention to kill. If we speak some statement believing it to be true and it turns out to be false, this is not the kamma of lying, for there is no intention of deceiving.
On Kamma - by Bhikkhu Bodhi
http://www.theravada.ca/readings/64-que ... bodhi.html

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Re: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Apr 04, 2011 9:20 am

Greetings,

tiltbillings wrote:Arahants have discarded vipaka/suffering.
Where does it say here that vipaka IS suffering?[/quote]

I didn't say the word "is".... I was abbreviating this sequence...

From ignorance as a requisite condition come fabrications. From fabrications as a requisite condition comes consciousness. From consciousness as a requisite condition comes name-&-form. From name-&-form as a requisite condition come the six sense media. From the six sense media as a requisite condition comes contact. From contact as a requisite condition comes feeling. From feeling as a requisite condition comes craving. From craving as a requisite condition comes clinging/sustenance. From clinging/sustenance as a requisite condition comes becoming. From becoming as a requisite condition comes birth. From birth as a requisite condition, then aging & death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair come into play. Such is the origination of this entire mass of stress & suffering.

.... where that which comes after the kamma/cetana/sankhara, is the experienced resultant of said kamma/cetana/sankhara.

From the cessation of fabrications (sankhara/cetana/kamma), comes the cessation of suffering.

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: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Apr 04, 2011 9:22 am

Greetings Cooran,

You might not realise it, but we're actually in agreement.... vipaka isn't just "what happens after we kill something" (i.e. soggy shoes, squashed slug), it's the experienced resultant of a volitional action.

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: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Apr 04, 2011 9:26 am

Greetings,

mikenz66 wrote:So there is a world/all outside that which we experience? Are the clods not part of our experience?

The five aggregates are our experience. The six senses are our experience.

Where do clods fit in to that? The feel of clods, the taste of clods, the smell of clods, the smell of clods.... but not the clods, in and of themselves, independent of receiving consciousness.

Angulimala experienced feeling (of clod, of cuts)... not "clod" itself.

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: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby cooran » Mon Apr 04, 2011 9:32 am

Hello all,

Just so we're all on the same page:
Kamma: advantageous or disadvantageous action; Sanskrit karma, Pāli: kamma: 'action', correctly speaking denotes the advantageous and disadvantageous intentions kusala and akusala-cetanā and their concomitant mental properties, causing rebirth and shaping the destiny of beings. These kammical intentions kammacetanā become manifest as advantageous or disadvantageous actions by body kāya-kamma speech vacī-kamma and mind mano-kamma Thus the Buddhist term 'kamma' by no means signifies the result of actions, and quite certainly not the fate of man, or perhaps even of whole nations the so-called wholesale or mass-kamma, misconceptions which, through the influence of theosophy, have become widely spread in the West.

intention cetanā o Bhikkhus, is what I call action cetanāham bhikkhave kammam vadāmi for through intention one performs the action by body, speech or mind.. There is kamma action, o Bhikkhus, that ripens in hell. Kamma that ripens in the animal world.. Kamma that ripens in the world of men. Kamma that ripens in the divine world. Threefold, however, is the fruit of kamma: ripening during the life-time dittha-dhamma-vedanīya-kamma ripening in the next birth upapajja-vedanīya-kamma ripening in later births aparāpariya-vedanīya kamma... A.VI, 63.

The 3 conditions or roots mūla of disadvantageous kamma actions are greed, hatred, confusion lobha dosa moha those of advantageous kamma are: unselfishness alobha hatelessness adosa = mettā good-will, unconfusedness amoha = paññā knowledge.
Greed, o Bhikkhus, is a condition for the arising of kamma; hatred is a condition for the arising of kamma; confusion is a condition for the arising of kamma. A. III, 109.

The disadvantageous actions are of 3 kinds, conditioned by greed, or hate, or confusion.
Killing... stealing... unlawful sexual intercourse... lying... slandering... rude speech... foolish babble, if practised, carried on, and frequently cultivated, leads to rebirth in hell, or amongst the animals, or amongst the ghosts A. III, 40. He who kills and is cruel goes either to hell or, if reborn as man, will be short-lived. He who torments others will be afflicted with disease. The angry one will look ugly, the envious one will be without influence, the stingy one will be poor, the stubborn one will be of low descent, the indolent one will be without knowledge. In the contrary case, man will be reborn in heaven or reborn as man, he will be long-lived, possessed of beauty, influence, noble descent and knowledge cf. M. 135.
For the above 10-fold advantageous and disadvantageous course of action, see kamma-patha For the 5 heinous crimes with immediate result, see: ānantarika-kamma

Owners of their kamma are the beings, heirs of their kamma, their kamma is their womb from which they are born, their kamma is their friend, their refuge. Whatever kamma they perform, good or bad, thereof they will be the heirs M. 135.

With regard to the time of the taking place of the kamma-result vipāka one distinguishes, as mentioned above, 3 kinds of kamma:
1. kamma ripening during the life-time dittha-dhamma-vedanīya kamma
2. kamma ripening in the next birth upapajja-vedanīya-kamma
3. kamma ripening in later births aparāpariya-vedanīya-kamma

The first two kinds of kamma may be without kamma-result vipāka if the circumstances required for the taking place of the kamma-result are missing, or if, through the preponderance of counteractive kamma and their being too weak, they are unable to produce any result. In this case they are called ahosi-kamma lit. 'kamma that has been', in other words, ineffectual kamma.

The third type of kamma, however, which bears fruit in later lives, will, whenever and wherever there is an opportunity, be productive of kamma-result. Before its result has ripened, it will never become ineffective as long as the life-process is kept going by craving and ignorance.

According to the Com., e.g. Vis.M XIX, the 1st of the 7 kammical impulse-moments kamma javana s. javana is considered as 'kamma ripening during the life-time', the 7th moment as 'kamma ripening in the next birth', the remaining 5 moments as 'kamma ripening in later births'.

With regard to their functions one distinguishes:
1. regenerative or productive kamma janaka-kamma,
2. supportive or consolidating kamma upatthambhaka-kamma,
3. counteractive suppressive or frustrating kamma upapīlaka-kamma,
4. destructive or supplanting kamma upaghātaka or upacchedaka-kamma

1 produces the 5 groups of existence materiality, feeling, perception, mental constructions, consciousness at rebirth as well as during life-continuity.
2 does not produce kamma-results but is only able to maintain the already produced kamma-results.
3 counteracts or suppresses the kamma-results.
4 destroys the influence of a weaker kamma and effects only its own result.

With regard to the priority of their result one distinguishes:
1. weighty kamma garuka-kamma,
2. habitual kamma ācinnaka or bahula-kamma,
3. death-proximate kamma maranāsanna-kamma,
4. stored-up kamma katattā-kamma
1, 2: The weighty garuka and the habitual bahula advantageous or disadvantageous kamma are ripening earlier than the light and rarely performed kamma. 3: The death-proximate maranāsanna kamma - i.e. the advantageous or disadvantageous intention present immediately before death, which often may be the reflex of some previously performed good or evil action kamma or of a sign of it kamma-nimitta or of a sign of the future existence gati-nimitta - produces rebirth. 4: In the absence of any of these three actions at the moment before death, the stored-up katattā kamma will produce rebirth.
A real, and in the ultimate sense true, understanding of Buddhist kamma doctrine is possible only through a deep insight into the impersonality see: anattā and conditionality see: paticcasamuppāda paccaya of all phenomena of existence. Everywhere, in all the forms of existence... such a one is beholding merely mental and physical phenomena kept going by their being bound up through causes and effects.

No doer does he see behind the deeds, no recipient apart from the kamma-fruit. And with full insight he clearly understands that the wise ones are using merely conventional terms when, with regard to the taking place of any action, they speak of a doer, or when they speak of a receiver of the kamma-results at their arising. Therefore the ancient masters have said:
'No doer of the deeds is found,
No one who ever reaps their fruits;
Empty phenomena roll on:
This view alone is right and true.
'And whilst the deeds and their results
Roll on, based on conditions all,
There no beginning can be seen,
Just as it is with seed and tree.' Vis.M XIX
Kamma kamma-paccaya is one of the 24 conditions paccaya App.: Kamma.
Literature: Kamma and Rebirth, by Nyanatiloka WHEEL 9; Survival and Kamma in Buddhist Perspective, by K.N. Jayatilleke WHEEL 141/143; Kamma and its Fruit WHEEL 221/224.
http://what-buddha-said.net/library/Bud ... dic3_k.htm

Vipāka: 'kamma-result' or 'effect of action', is any kammically morally neutral mental phenomenon e.g. bodily pleasant or painful feeling, sense-consciousness, etc., which is the result of advantageous or disadvantageous intentional action kamma through body, speech or mind, done either in this or some previous life. Totally wrong is the belief that, according to Buddhism, everything is the result of previous action. Never, for example, is any kammically advantageous or disadvantageous intentional action the result of former action, being in reality itself kamma. On this subject see: titthāyatana kamma, Tab. I; Fund II. Cf. A. III, 101; Kath. 162 Guide, p. 80.
Kamma-produced kammaja or kamma-samutthāna material things are never called kamma-vipāka as this term may be applied only to mental phenomena.
http://what-buddha-said.net/library/Bud ... dic3_v.htm

with metta
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Re: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby Ben » Mon Apr 04, 2011 9:32 am

Hi Retro
So Angulimala experiencing the vedanas of being belted on the head with clods was his kamma but being belted by the clods were not kamma?
Thanks

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Re: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Apr 04, 2011 9:42 am

Greetings Ben,

Ben wrote:So Angulimala experiencing the vedanas of being belted on the head with clods was his kamma but being belted by the clods were not kamma?

This is substantially closer to what I'm saying, yes (though I'd replace the word kamma with vipaka).

But also keep in mind the vedana is a sankhata dhamma (formed dhamma), and that which is formed (sankhata), is formed by ignorance. So what would the vedana of an arahant free of ignorance be like? I think the following extract from one of Venerable Nanananda's Nibbana Sermon 11, as quoted earlier, gives some idea (especially the bolded red bit)

Nāma and rūpa, as well as paṭigha- and rūpasaññā, are
highly significant terms. Paṭigha- and rūpasaññā are equivalent
to paṭighasamphassa and adhivacanasamphassa respectively.
Now as to this perception of form, it is basically conditioned
by contact. That is why the Kalahavivādasutta states
that contact is the cause of the two views of existence and non-
existence.

380S I 13, Jaṭāsutta; cf. volume I sermon 1.

In this Kalahavivādasutta one finds a series of questions
and answers going deeper and deeper into the analysis of contact,
step by step. The question phasso nu lokasmiṃ kutonidāno,
"what is the cause of contact in this world?"; gets
the answer nāmañca rūpañca paṭicca phasso, "dependent on
name-and-form is contact"
.381 The next question is: Kismiṃ
vibhūte na phussanti phassā, "in the absence of what, do contacts
not bring about contact", or, "touches do not touch?" It gets
the answer: Rūpe vibhūte na phusanti phassā, "in the absence
of form, contacts do not bring about contact"
.
The question that comes up next, and the answer given,
are extremely important. They lead to a deep analysis of the
Dhamma, so much so that both verses deserve to be quoted in
full. The question is:
Kathaṃsametassa vibhoti rūpaṃ,
sukhaṃ dukhaṃ vā pi kathaṃ vibhoti,
etaṃ me pabrūhi yathā vibhoti,
taṃ jāniyāmā iti me mano ahu.382
"To one constituted in which manner does form cease to
exist,
Or, how even pleasure and pain cease to exist
,
Do tell me how all these become non-existent,
Let us know this, such a thought arose in me."
381Sn 871-872, Kalahavivādasutta.
382Sn 873, Kalahavivādasutta.

The answer to this question is couched in this extraordinary
verse:
Na saññasaññī na visaññasaññī,
no pi asaññī na vibhūtasaññī,
evaṃ sametassa vibhoti rūpaṃ,
saññānidānā hi papañcasaṅkhā.383
What this verse purports to describe is the state of a person
for whom form as also pleasure and pain has ceased to exist. He
is not one with normal perception, nor is he one with abnormal
perception. He is not non-percipient, nor has he rescinded perception.
It is to one constituted in this manner that form ceases
to exist, for, papañcasaṅkhā - whatever they may be - have perception
as their source.

The meaning of this verse needs to be clarified further. According
to the MahāNiddesa, the allusion in this verse is to one
who is on the path to the formless realms, having attained the
first four absorptions.384 The commentary is forced to that conclusion,
because it takes the phrase na vibhūtasaññī as negating
formless realms as such. The assumption is that the person
referred to is neither conscious with normal perception, nor abnormally
unconscious, nor devoid of perception, as in the attainment
of cessation, nor in one of the formless attainments.
So then, the only possibility seemed to be to identify it with
some intermediate state. That is why the MahāNiddesa and
383Sn 874, Kalahavivādasutta.
384Nidd I 280.

the other commentaries interpret this problematic state as that
of one who is on the path to formless attainments, arūpamaggasamaṅgi.
385
However, considerations of context and presentation would
lead to a different conclusion. The extraordinary state alluded
to by this verse seems to be a surpamundane one, which goes
far deeper than the so-called intermediate state. The transcendence
of form, indicated here, is more radical than the transcendence
in attaining to formless states. It is a transcendence at a
supramundane level
, as we may well infer from the last line of
the verse, saññānidānā hi papañcasaṅkhā. Papañcasaṅkhā is
a term which has a relevance to insight meditation and the denouement
of the sutta is also suggestive of such a background.
The Kalahavivādasutta, consisting of sixteen verses, is, from
beginning to end, a network of deep questions and answers leading
to levels of insight. The opening verse, for instance, states
the initial problem as follows:
Kuto pahūtā kalahā vivādā,
paridevasokā sahamaccharā ca,
mānātimānā saha pesuṇā ca,
kuto pahūtā te tad iṅgha brūhi.386
"Whence do spring up contentions and disputes,
Lamentations, sorrows and envies,
And arrogance together with slander,
385Nidd I 280 and Pj II 553.
386Sn 862, Kalahavivādasutta.

Whence do they spring up, pray tell me this."
It is in answer to this basic question that this discourse gradually
unfolds itself. In accordance with the law of dependent
arising, the cause of contentions and disputes is said to be the
tendency to hold things dear, piyappahūtā kalahā vivādā. Then
the question is about the cause of this idea of holding things
dear. The cause of it is said to be desire, chandanidānāni piyāni
loke. Things dear originate from desire. Desire, or interest,
makes things `dear'.
The next question is: What is the origin of desire? Desire is
traced to the distinction between the pleasant and the unpleasant.
It is in reply to the question regarding the origin of this
distinction between the pleasant and the unpleasant that contact
is brought in. In fact, it is the question as to the origin of
contact, phasso nu lokasmiṃ kuto nidāno, which formed the
starting point of our discussion. The answer to that question is
name-and-form, nāmañca rūpañca. So in this chain of causes,
the link that comes next to contact is name-and-form.

Now the verse in question beginning with na saññasaññī
goes deeper than name-and-form. Even the question about
contact has a peculiar wording: Kismiṃ vibhūte na phusanti
phassā, "When what is not there, do touches not touch?" The
question, then, is not just the cessation of contact as such. The
answer, too, has the same peculiarity. Rūpe vibhūte na phusanti
phassā, "It is when form is not there that touches do not touch".
It is the subsequent question regarding form that brings out the
cryptic verse as the answer.
All this goes to show that the verse in question alludes to a
supramundane state far transcending the formless or any supposed
intermediate stage. The transcendence of pleasure and
pain, as well as perception of form, is implied here.
The verse
beginning with na saññasaññī brings the entire analytical disquisition
to a climax. It comes as the thirteenth verse in the
series. Usually, such a disquisition leads up to a climax, highlighting
Nibbāna. It is obvious, therefore, that the reference
here is to the Nibbānic mind
.

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: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby Dan74 » Mon Apr 04, 2011 9:46 am

Sorry to butt in, but there is also a small possibility that the Buddha was helping Ven Angulimala accept what was happening to him and not give rise to unwholesome thoughts. After all, why console him by saying essentially that it was much better that this was happening now than him enduring hell for what he had done?

Of course, there is a possibility that the text isn't faithful to the original exchange too...

As for the various positions - tilt's position seems to be common sense, I am not sure I understand retro's position...
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Re: Do arahants discard vipaka/suffering?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Apr 04, 2011 9:54 am

Greetings Dan,

Dan74 wrote:Sorry to butt in, but there is also a small possibility that the Buddha was helping Ven Angulimala accept what was happening to him and not give rise to unwholesome thoughts. After all, why console him by saying essentially that it was much better that this was happening now than him enduring hell for what he had done?

It's an interesting question as to why he would feel the need to say it to an arahant in the first place, who, by definition is incapable of unwholesome thoughts.

Dan74 wrote:Of course, there is a possibility that the text isn't faithful to the original exchange too...

Maybe, maybe not... it just seems to mean different things to different people. On one hand it could be seen as the doling out of a comparatively trifling vipaka (which is the seemingly common interpretation)... or alternatively, it could be a case of, "Well, Angulimala, given all those people you killed, you're damned lucky you've transcended becoming and that therefore this is the only consequence you'll experience as a result of your actions..."

Dan74 wrote:As for the various positions - tilt's position seems to be common sense, I am not sure I understand retro's position...

I'm quite comfortable with that. :)

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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