The causes for wisdom

An open and inclusive investigation into Buddhism and spiritual cultivation
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Wed May 01, 2013 2:49 am

dhamma follower wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
dhamma follower wrote: However, right at the beginning, there should be the clear understanding that it is not "a self" who does the studying, but it is a dhamma which is conditioned by previous hearing and considering which, at some particular point arises and is aware. If this understanding is not firm, there will always be idea of "I" trying to be aware or to observe, and the non-self nature of the reality which is aware can not be known. We can not determine when this dhamma studying, this awareness will occur, since they depend on conditions to arise. So if we can not determine when, why there would be the idea of formal meditation? Can we decide that during that particular time there will be awareness? If we think we can, isn't it the idea of a self who can make some dhammas to arise at will?
And the Buddha taught a way of practice for this: sila, meditation, and following the Eightfold Path.


Your taking the Eight Noblefold Path as "someone doing something" is only one way to interpret it. There are other ways to interpret that, such as it refers to the dhammas (cetasikas, precisely) which arise by conditions.

Which one accords better to the teaching of anattaness?
This is what is so sad about the Sujin method. It is an us vs them approach. We Sujinists use impersonal terminology, so we have a better understanding of anatta, which is, of course, nonsense.
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.

dheamhan a fhios agam

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby dhamma follower » Wed May 01, 2013 4:55 am

Alex123 wrote:Dear Dhamma Follower,

dhamma follower wrote:The issue is not whether there's a choice in the conventional sense or not, but to understand that the choice is also conditioned, not "I", me, or mine. Do you agree that choice is conditioned?


Is it possible that conventional meditation practice (including Jhāna) can bring one to a situation of insight where anatta will be seen, after which one's wisdom will be developed much more?


Dear Alex,

This thread has been an attempt to show that it is not the act of doing something (including conventional meditation practice) which is the cause of wisdom.

It is the right understanding gained from hearing the Dhamma and wise consideration which condition deeper and deeper levels of wisdom, including insight.

The jhanna it self isn't the cause of wisdom (vipassana wisdom), otherwise Buddha former teachers could have attained Nibanna.

Brgds,

D.F

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Wed May 01, 2013 4:59 am

dhamma follower wrote:
Alex123 wrote:Dear Dhamma Follower,

dhamma follower wrote:The issue is not whether there's a choice in the conventional sense or not, but to understand that the choice is also conditioned, not "I", me, or mine. Do you agree that choice is conditioned?


Is it possible that conventional meditation practice (including Jhāna) can bring one to a situation of insight where anatta will be seen, after which one's wisdom will be developed much more?


Dear Alex,

This thread has been an attempt to show that it is not the act of doing something (including conventional meditation practice) which is the cause of wisdom.

It is the right understanding gained from hearing the Dhamma and wise consideration which condition deeper and deeper levels of wisdom, including insight.
Listening is a deliberate act -- a deliberate doing -- as is consideration, wise or otherwise.
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.

dheamhan a fhios agam

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby dhamma follower » Wed May 01, 2013 6:16 am

tiltbillings wrote:
dhamma follower wrote:Your taking the Eight Noblefold Path as "someone doing something" is only one way to interpret it. There are other ways to interpret that, such as it refers to the dhammas (cetasikas, precisely) which arise by conditions.

Which one accords better to the teaching of anattaness?
This is what is so sad about the Sujin method. It is an us vs them approach. We Sujinists use impersonal terminology, so we have a better understanding of anatta, which is, of course, nonsense.


Dear Tilt,

Not a matter of terminology, but of understanding. If there's a clear understanding that all phenomena are actually dhammas arising by conditions and after arising they fall away when the conditions for its arising cease, there will be no problem using
conventional speak.

However, if there is indeed such understanding, why there need to be the insistence on "one has to practice the Eight fold Path" vs a presentation of causality ?

Is the Eight fold path apart from the person who practices it? Who is that person that practices?

In other words, what is your understanding of the Buddha's teaching of non-self?

Brgrds,
D.F

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby dhamma follower » Wed May 01, 2013 6:21 am

tiltbillings wrote:Listening is a deliberate act -- a deliberate doing -- as is consideration, wise or otherwise.


What do you mean by "deliberate act?" Do you mean it is a self who does that? Don't you think cetana is also conditioned, as is consideration?

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby retrofuturist » Wed May 01, 2013 6:25 am

Greetings,

dhamma follower wrote:why there need to be the insistence on "one has to practice the Eight fold Path" vs a presentation of causality ?

Possibly because that's what the Buddha actually taught?

SN 56.11: Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta wrote:"And what is the middle way realized by the Tathagata that — producing vision, producing knowledge — leads to calm, to direct knowledge, to self-awakening, to Unbinding? Precisely this Noble Eightfold Path: right view, right resolve, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, right concentration. This is the middle way realized by the Tathagata that — producing vision, producing knowledge — leads to calm, to direct knowledge, to self-awakening, to Unbinding."

The Buddha is cool. 8-) Following the Noble Eightfold path produces knowledge (i.e. wisdom).

dhamma follower wrote:Is the Eight fold path apart from the person who practices it? Who is that person that practices?

dhamma follower wrote:What do you mean by "deliberate act?" Do you mean it is a self who does that? Don't you think cetana is also conditioned, as is consideration?

dhamma follower wrote:etc. etc.

As Dhamma Follower attends inappropriately in this way, one of six kinds of view arises in her. The view I have no self arises in her as true & established. This is called a thicket of views, a wilderness of views, a contortion of views, a writhing of views, a fetter of views. Bound by a fetter of views, the uninstructed run-of-the-mill person is not freed from birth, aging, & death, from sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair. She is not freed, I tell you, from suffering & stress.

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)

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Wed May 01, 2013 6:35 am

dhamma follower wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
dhamma follower wrote:Your taking the Eight Noblefold Path as "someone doing something" is only one way to interpret it. There are other ways to interpret that, such as it refers to the dhammas (cetasikas, precisely) which arise by conditions.

Which one accords better to the teaching of anattaness?
This is what is so sad about the Sujin method. It is an us vs them approach. We Sujinists use impersonal terminology, so we have a better understanding of anatta, which is, of course, nonsense.


Dear Tilt,

Not a matter of terminology, but of understanding. If there's a clear understanding that all phenomena are actually dhammas arising by conditions and after arising they fall away when the conditions for its arising cease, there will be no problem using
conventional speak.
You, however, have just said that your way of interpreting things is better. We have been around this bush repeatedly. That I opt to use conventional speech, as do the suttas, does not mean I have a lack of understanding. That you use Sujinists abhidhamma speech, which the Buddha did not teach, does not mean that you have a better understanding.

However, if there is indeed such understanding, why there need to be the insistence on "one has to practice the Eight fold Path" vs a presentation of causality ?
That insistence is coming from you and the Sujinists, not me. I have no problem with someone who wants to use such inelegant speech in trying to explain the Dhamma, but I do have a problem when those folks insist that their speech is better, truer than the speech that is consistent with the suttas.

Is the Eight fold path apart from the person who practices it? Who is that person that practices?

In other words, what is your understanding of the Buddha's teaching of non-self?
You do not know the answer to these questions?
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.

dheamhan a fhios agam

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Wed May 01, 2013 6:39 am

dhamma follower wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:Listening is a deliberate act -- a deliberate doing -- as is consideration, wise or otherwise.


What do you mean by "deliberate act?" Do you mean it is a self who does that?
There is no deliberate choosing to listen to and consider the Dhamma?

Don't you think cetana is also conditioned, as is consideration?
And why would you think that I do not? We have had, more than once, this discussion before, but you keep going back to this straw-man.
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.

dheamhan a fhios agam

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby dhamma follower » Wed May 01, 2013 6:59 am

tiltbillings wrote:
There is no deliberate choosing to listen to and consider the Dhamma?


There is choosing, which happens because of conditions.

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby mikenz66 » Wed May 01, 2013 7:00 am

dhamma follower wrote:Not a matter of terminology, but of understanding. If there's a clear understanding that all phenomena are actually dhammas arising by conditions and after arising they fall away when the conditions for its arising cease, there will be no problem using
conventional speak.

However, if there is indeed such understanding, why there need to be the insistence on "one has to practice the Eight fold Path" vs a presentation of causality ?

And, indeed, there is no argument or contradiction from reputable teachers that whatever happens, including walking, sitting, jhana, and insight insight, arises due to causes and conditions (see the Ajahn Brahm quotes I gave above, for example: http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=15952&start=740#p243244). Some listen to Ajahn Brahm, and, due to that cause, do certain "practices". Some listen to Khun Sujin and, due to that cause, do certain "practices".

Some will have misunderstood the instruction of their respective teachers and make various errors, such as attaching to a concept of self or no-self. Even the Buddha reported that problem:
http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f= ... 41#p243302

:anjali:
Mike

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Wed May 01, 2013 7:05 am

dhamma follower wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
There is no deliberate choosing to listen to and consider the Dhamma?


There is choosing, which happens because of conditions.
I chose to write this sentence. Nothing unconditioned here.
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.

dheamhan a fhios agam

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby dhamma follower » Wed May 01, 2013 7:14 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings,

dhamma follower wrote:why there need to be the insistence on "one has to practice the Eight fold Path" vs a presentation of causality ?

Possibly because that's what the Buddha actually taught?

SN 56.11: Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta wrote:"And what is the middle way realized by the Tathagata that — producing vision, producing knowledge — leads to calm, to direct knowledge, to self-awakening, to Unbinding? Precisely this Noble Eightfold Path: right view, right resolve, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, right concentration. This is the middle way realized by the Tathagata that — producing vision, producing knowledge — leads to calm, to direct knowledge, to self-awakening, to Unbinding."

The Buddha is cool. 8-) Following the Noble Eightfold path produces knowledge (i.e. wisdom).

dhamma follower wrote:Is the Eight fold path apart from the person who practices it? Who is that person that practices?

dhamma follower wrote:What do you mean by "deliberate act?" Do you mean it is a self who does that? Don't you think cetana is also conditioned, as is consideration?

dhamma follower wrote:etc. etc.

As Dhamma Follower attends inappropriately in this way, one of six kinds of view arises in him: The view I have no self arises in him as true & established. This is called a thicket of views, a wilderness of views, a contortion of views, a writhing of views, a fetter of views. Bound by a fetter of views, the uninstructed run-of-the-mill person is not freed from birth, aging, & death, from sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair. He is not freed, I tell you, from suffering & stress.

Metta,
Retro. :)


Dear Retro,

So are you acting as the Buddha to accuse me of attending inappropriately? In my understanding, the view criticized by the Buhhda "I have no self" rather describes someone who says "there is no self", but no real understanding of it, and therefore still assumes a person behind what is merely the five aggregates which arise because of conditions. And it is what i have seen so far in this thread in the arguments which maintain that there's someone who practices the Eight fold Path, in stead of it's being merely wholesome mental factors which arise because of hearing the Dhamma and wise considering.

Interestingly, you have agreed in some previous posts about the cause of wisdom as above, and also quoted a sutta in which the Buddha said about all how other wholesome factors (such as right effort, right concentration etc....) follow right view automatically. If you see that the moment of right understanding from hearing about the truth is accompanied by those factors (as you said before), do you need to conceive about some methodical steps performed by a person to "practice the Eightfold path", if it, or more precisely 5-6 folds already arise at the moment of right understanding?

Brgds,

D.F

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby mikenz66 » Wed May 01, 2013 7:16 am

dhamma follower wrote: And it is what i have seen so far in this thread in the arguments which maintain that there's someone who practices the Eight fold Path, instead of it's being merely wholesome mental factors which arise because of hearing the Dhamma and wise considering.

Not from me, and not from the teachers I have quoted.

:anjali:
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby dhamma follower » Wed May 01, 2013 7:25 am

mikenz66 wrote:
dhamma follower wrote:Not a matter of terminology, but of understanding. If there's a clear understanding that all phenomena are actually dhammas arising by conditions and after arising they fall away when the conditions for its arising cease, there will be no problem using
conventional speak.

However, if there is indeed such understanding, why there need to be the insistence on "one has to practice the Eight fold Path" vs a presentation of causality ?

And, indeed, there is no argument or contradiction from reputable teachers that whatever happens, including walking, sitting, jhana, and insight insight, arises due to causes and conditions (see the Ajahn Brahm quotes I gave above, for example: http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=15952&start=740#p243244). Some listen to Ajahn Brahm, and, due to that cause, do certain "practices". Some listen to Khun Sujin and, due to that cause, do certain "practices".

Some will have misunderstood the instruction of their respective teachers and make various errors, such as attaching to a concept of self or no-self. Even the Buddha reported that problem:
http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f= ... 41#p243302

:anjali:
Mike


Dear Mike,

The purpose of this discussion for me (and I guess other Sujin' students as well) is not at all to say that this teaching is unique to AS. Actually, if there are more teachers who teach like her (that we think to be the right way), it would be wonderful.

I don't know about all the existing teachers, so I can not say anything about that. But if we talk about a specific teacher, who might say certain things like AS, but differ in some aspects, I think we can point out those differences to really get to the subtlety of the matter.

Brgrds,

D.F

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby dhamma follower » Wed May 01, 2013 7:29 am

mikenz66 wrote:
dhamma follower wrote: And it is what i have seen so far in this thread in the arguments which maintain that there's someone who practices the Eight fold Path, instead of it's being merely wholesome mental factors which arise because of hearing the Dhamma and wise considering.

Not from me, and not from the teachers I have quoted.

:anjali:
Mike


No Mike, of course I didn't mean everyone, but there have been arguments like that. Anyhow, argument is not really a person, it changes too.

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Wed May 01, 2013 7:33 am

dhamma follower wrote: And it is what i have seen so far in this thread in the arguments which maintain that there's someone who practices the Eight fold Path, in stead of it's being merely wholesome mental factors which arise because of hearing the Dhamma and wise considering.
And who has done this here? No me and not anyone else that I have seen posting in this thread. This insistence "that there's someone" is nothing more than a strawman and it is not a good basis for dialogue.


Image
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.

dheamhan a fhios agam

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Mr Man » Wed May 01, 2013 7:54 am

There is a feeling of "that there's someone" and that is where we practice. I think we need to practice at the point of feeling rather than concept.

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby mikenz66 » Wed May 01, 2013 7:57 am

dhamma follower wrote:I don't know about all the existing teachers, so I can not say anything about that. But if we talk about a specific teacher, who might say certain things like AS, but differ in some aspects, I think we can point out those differences to really get to the subtlety of the matter.

All teachers I know teach that everything that arises does so due to causes and conditions. I have given you specific quotes from Ajahn Brahm, and, given time, could point out similar statements from any other well-known teacher: Mahasi Sayadaw, Thanissaro Bhikkhu, etc. If you think that their teaching is faulty it is up to you to point out where they are in error, and not merely make assumptions about what they are actually teachings, as in posts such as:
viewtopic.php?f=16&t=15952&start=100#p228748
... if one believes that there is a self who can condition dhammas as wished, which is the underlying idea of "formal practice" how can there be detachment from an idea of self?


:anjali:
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Wed May 01, 2013 8:01 am

Mr Man wrote:There is a feeling of "that there's someone" and that is where we practice. I think we need to practice at the point of feeling rather than concept.
Yes. And to state the obvious, we can intellectually know that feeling "that there is someone" is really a product of the khandhas, but intellectually knowing it, even in very great depth and detail, is not at all the same as "seeing" the reality of it in terms of the "all" that we are, which is why the Buddha outlined various practices, ways of doing, that would allow us to come to those insights by directly seeing the actual nature of "that there is someone."
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.

dheamhan a fhios agam

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Wed May 01, 2013 8:18 am

mikenz66 wrote:
dhamma follower wrote:I don't know about all the existing teachers, so I can not say anything about that. But if we talk about a specific teacher, who might say certain things like AS, but differ in some aspects, I think we can point out those differences to really get to the subtlety of the matter.

All teachers I know teach that everything that arises does so due to causes and conditions. I have given you specific quotes from Ajahn Brahm, and, given time, could point out similar statements from any other well-known teacher: Mahasi Sayadaw, Thanissaro Bhikkhu, etc. If you think that their teaching is faulty it is up to you to point out where they are in error, and not merely make assumptions about what they are actually teachings, as in posts such as:
viewtopic.php?f=16&t=15952&start=100#p228748
... if one believes that there is a self who can condition dhammas as wished, which is the underlying idea of "formal practice" how can there be detachment from an idea of self?
The problem is that this assumption is part of what Sujin and her primary student, Nina van Gorkom, teach, and it is what the followers of Sujin repeat, and never mind the actual reality:

viewtopic.php?f=16&t=15952&start=300#p230290

http://www.dhammastudygroup.org/audio/2012-01-kk/2012-01-25-am-b-01.mp3
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.

dheamhan a fhios agam

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson


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