The causes for wisdom

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
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Dan74
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Dan74 » Wed May 01, 2013 1:03 pm

robertk wrote:DAN74
The [u]danger of practice which is not rooted in deep mental cultivation that is usually had during long retreats, IMO, is that it is superficial and does not withstand strong blows.[/u] It is easy to feel that the practice is on track, easy to be a nice enough guy, untroubled and often moved to kindness, when life is relatively trouble-free and settled. But when you are suddenly afflicted by chronic pain, you loved ones seem to turn on you, your job is gone, your routine is upset, the clinging that hitherto was subtle and invisible becomes manifest.

Dear Dan
thanks for reading my long post. Just thought I would respond to this and also reply to some of the comments from some other members (not you)suggesting that Sujin and her students make no efforts.
Now I dont meditate at all-in the formal practice sense- nor does Nina van Gorkom or Sujin Boriharnwanket.

Sujin is now 86 years old: last year she went with many students on three overseas tripes to India , poland and Vietnam. On each of those trips everyday she was meeting for hours with Buddhists- those who accompanied her and from the 3 couuntries- to discuss details of Dhamma. I have known her well for 22 years now and honestly she seems to get stronger and stronger every year.
Nina van Gorkom, (now 85)flew out from holland last year to join the Vietnam trip and is now writing a new book on it. Last week while visiting her husbands grave (passed away last year) she slipped and broke her hip. She is in hospital but continuing to work on it and in great spirits looking forward to leaving hospital and flying out to Bangkok for a month or two in a few months.
If you wanted to refer to me though the casual obsever mights see some signs of laziness :popcorn: especially in comparison to those amazing women.

On the otherhand, to be honest I have been around Buddhist for 30 years now, I just haven't seen either in Bangkok or eleswhere much proof of your statement that it is the people who do the long retreats who have the real deal and that people like Nina or Sujin, or even me if I can be so conceited , who are superficial.
I know of serious meditators I have met who later come into strife in their lives and some even give up Buddhism altogether
But this is all hard to know. Just my superficial observations.


Hi Robert,

To be clear - I have my biases but as I said before I am in no position to judge yours, Sujin Boriharnwanket's or Nina van Gorkom's practice, nor do I have any basis to denigrate it. Like I said in my post:

I marvel that your group is able to find so much sustenance in the study and contemplation of the teachings without the need to meditate. I hope that your insights are genuine and deep and you will spread wisdom and compassion around you wherever you go.


What I tried to share throughout this thread (among other things) is what formal practice has meant to me. For my part if you don't see the value of meditation, that's fine. It's a funny thing that while your group feels that meditation is for the especially gifted, I feel that meditation is for the especially deluded, who need the space and silence in order to face the ignorance and see through it.

Well, each to their own.
_/|\_

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robertk
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby robertk » Wed May 01, 2013 1:28 pm

Mr Man wrote:Hi robertk
I think in some ways the formal meditation thing is a bit of a red herring and the non meditation and a certain way of thinking can become the "technique". As you pointed out before we needed to be circumspect. Wisdom and ignorance are shared amongst us all.

so true :sage:

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robertk
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby robertk » Wed May 01, 2013 1:33 pm

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings DF,

I
Let's be very clear... "No self" is an unverifiable ontological proposition and the Buddha did not teach it.

The views you express here in this topic seem single-mindedly fixated on maintaining consistency of speech with this unverifiable ontological proposition of "no self" which you appear to present as the centrepiece of the entire Dhamma, despite the fact the Buddha taught the experiential teaching that "all dhammas (experiences) are not self" rather than the ontological proposition that "there is no self". Ontological speculation seems like a thicket of views, rather than a cause that gives rise to liberative wisdom.



Metta,
Retro. :)

all the following is a great post by yuttadhammo, a mahasi practitioner

QUOTE
"This is how he attends inappropriately: ... Or else he is inwardly perplexed about the immediate present: 'Am I? Am I not? What am I? How am I? Where has this being come from? Where is it bound?'

"As he attends inappropriately in this way, one of six kinds of view arises in him: The view I have a self arises in him as true & established, or the view I have no self... or the view It is precisely by means of self that I perceive self... or the view It is precisely by means of self that I perceive not-self ... This is called a thicket of views, a wilderness of views, a contortion of views, a writhing of views, a fetter of views."

The correct view is that there is no self. Whether one should teach this to others or not might be up for debate, but the truth of it is not. Right view is so important, the Lord Buddha placed it at the front of the eightfold noble path. As long as one holds to self in this or that, one still has wrong view. The very notion of I that exists in "I have no self", is already view of personality (sakkaayaditthi), and makes one stuck in a thicket, etc.

To say, on the other hand, that one could get stuck on such a view as "there is no self" doesn't make any sense, unless it is based on the idea that there once was a self in the past. The view of non-self frees the mind from any attachment internally or externally. It is, of course, possible that one might get caught up in pondering or fretting over the non-existence of self and miss the point, but that is not due to wrong view, it is due to wrong attention (ayoniso manasikara):

QUOTE
That opinion of theirs is based only on the personal sensations, on the worry and writhing consequent thereon, of those venerable recluses and Brahmans, who know not, neither perceive, and are subject to all kinds of craving:

45 foll. [41, 42] 'Those opinions of theirs are therefore based upon contact (through the senses).

58 foll. [43] 'That they should experience those sensations without such contact, such a condition of things could not be.

71. [44] 'They, all of them, receive those sensations through continual contact in the spheres of touch. To them on account of the sensations arises craving, on account of the craving arises the fuel (that is, the necessary condition, the food, the basis, of future lives). from the fuel results becoming, from the tendency to become arises rebirth, and from rebirth comes death, and grief, lamentation, pain, sorrow, and despair. It is, brethren, when a brother understands, as they really are, the origin and the end, the attraction, the danger, and the way of escape from the six realms of contact, that he gets to know what is above, beyond, them all.

Source: Dialogues of the Buddha (Rhys-Davids, Trans.)


The view "there is no self" does not fall into this category as it is free from the problems that a view of self holds.

Purification of view is most important for anyone starting out on the path to enlightenment. If one has wrong view from the start, one should be expected to undertake wrong practice. If one undertakes wrong practice, wrong knowledge and wrong release will follow. It is most important that one set on freedom from the rounds of rebirth should be clear from the start that all of the things inside of oneself and everything else in the world is void of a self.

Best wishes,

Yuttadhammo

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kirk5a
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby kirk5a » Wed May 01, 2013 2:03 pm

If "there is no self" is the true and correct view, right view, at the front of the eightfold noble path, then show us where the Buddha said that. It ought to be all over the suttas.
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230

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kirk5a
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby kirk5a » Wed May 01, 2013 2:16 pm

Yuttadhammo wrote:The view "there is no self" does not fall into this category as it is free from the problems that a view of self holds.

If the view "there is no self" was free from problems, then the Buddha would not have said the following:
If I — being asked by Vacchagotta the wanderer if there is no self — were to answer that there is no self, that would be conforming with those brahmans & contemplatives who are exponents of annihilationism

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230

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Alex123
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Alex123 » Wed May 01, 2013 2:23 pm

robertk wrote:The correct view is that there is no self.


Where is this stated? Why MN#2 calls "there is no self" inappropriate attention and contemplation of 4NT (not "there is no self") to be appropriate attention? In SN44.10 Buddha denied that he taught "no self" (natthattā) because that is annihilationism. Buddha refused to declare "there is no self" for Vacchagota. And if you are going to say that Vacchagotta was spiritually immature and couldn't yet handle the truth, neither did the Buddha teach "no self" to Ananda who was a sotapanna if I am not mistaken.


"And what is right view? Knowledge with reference to stress, knowledge with reference to the origination of stress, knowledge with reference to the cessation of stress, knowledge with reference to the way of practice leading to the cessation of stress: This is called right view. MN141


Please note: No talk about existence or non-existence of self.


"'Everything exists' is the senior form of cosmology, brahman."
"'Everything does not exist' is the second form of cosmology, brahman."
"'Everything is a Oneness' is the third form of cosmology, brahman."
"'Everything is a Manyness' is the fourth form of cosmology, brahman. Avoiding these two extremes, the Tathagata teaches the Dhamma via the middle: From ignorance as a requisite condition come fabrications. ... 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. SN12.48



"By & large, Kaccayana, this world is supported by (takes as its object) a polarity, that of existence & non-existence. SN12.15


Talk about existence/non-existence is not part of Dhamma.
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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Paul Davy
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Paul Davy » Wed May 01, 2013 10:58 pm

Greetings,

Well said Alex.

The Dhamma is about liberation from dukkha, not ontological speculation... not about the existence or non-existence of things, nor any such cosmology nor views. The Buddha made this point very often, and very clearly.

AN 10.69: Kathavatthu Sutta wrote:"It isn't right, monks, that sons of good families, on having gone forth out of faith from home to the homeless life, should get engaged in such topics of conversation, i.e., conversation about kings, robbers, & ministers of state... talk of whether things exist or not.

"There are these ten topics of [proper] conversation. Which ten? Talk on modesty, on contentment, on seclusion, on non-entanglement, on arousing persistence, on virtue, on concentration, on discernment, on release, and on the knowledge & vision of release. These are the ten topics of conversation. If you were to engage repeatedly in these ten topics of conversation, you would outshine even the sun & moon, so mighty, so powerful — to say nothing of the wanderers of other sects."

Despite what some people think, Nanavira Thera was not being malicious when he said the following in the preface to Notes On Dhamma... he was being incisively accurate on the state of play.

Nanavira Thera wrote:These books of the Pali Canon correctly represent the Buddha's Teaching, and can be regarded as trustworthy throughout. (Vinayapitaka:) Suttavibhanga, Mahāvagga, Cūlavagga; (Suttapitaka:) Dīghanikāya, Majjhimanikāya, Samyuttanikāya, Anguttaranikāya, Suttanipāta, Dhammapada, Udāna, Itivuttaka, Theratherīgāthā. (The Jātaka verses may be authentic, but they do not come within the scope of these Notes.) No other Pali books whatsoever should be taken as authoritative; and ignorance of them (and particularly of the traditional Commentaries) may be counted a positive advantage, as leaving less to be unlearned.

I am thankful to have given primacy to the suttas from the outset of my interest in the Dhamma. It has left me with less to unlearn. These suttas do not teach "there is no self" so it is not a view I will encumber nor entangle myself with.... it is a thicket best side-stepped. It seems all schools, even those that are comparatively more aligned to the suttas, have planted their own thickets of views along the way rather than just clearing the path.

AN 7.12 wrote:"Monks, with the abandoning & destruction of the seven obsessions, the holy life is fulfilled. Which seven? The obsession of sensual passion, the obsession of resistance, the obsession of views, the obsession of uncertainty, the obsession of conceit, the obsession of passion for becoming, the obsession of ignorance. With the abandoning & destruction of these seven obsessions, the holy life is fulfilled.

"When, for a monk, the obsession of sensual passion has been abandoned, its root destroyed, made like a palmyra stump, deprived of the conditions of development, not destined for future arising; when, for him, the obsession of resistance... the obsession of views... the obsession of uncertainty... the obsession of conceit... the obsession of passion for becoming... the obsession of ignorance has been abandoned, its root destroyed, made like a palmyra stump, deprived of the conditions of development, not destined for future arising: this is called a monk who has cut through craving, has turned away from the fetter, and — by rightly breaking through conceit — has put an end to suffering & stress."

It's somewhat ironic that those making a big deal about "conditions" are, through adherence to a unique Dhamma designed to accommodate "the obsession of views", actually generating the "conditions of development" for the sustenance of that very "obsession". On the contrary, the "obsessions of views" pertaining to self should be abandoned, its root destroyed, made like a palmyra stump, deprived of the conditions of development, not destined for future arising... turn away from the fetter.

Maybe that would be a more profitable path than creating strawmen arguments that infer that other people who do not share the "no self" obsession hold the diametrically opposite ontological view of self.

SN 12.15 wrote:But when one sees the origination of the world as it actually is with right discernment, 'non-existence' with reference to the world does not occur to one. When one sees the cessation of the world as it actually is with right discernment, 'existence' with reference to the world does not occur to one.

Does 'existence' and 'non-existence' occur to you? Do you consider your path to be a path of right discernment?

:?:

Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa

:buddha1:

:anjali:

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"Whether I were to preach in brief, Sāriputta, or whether I were to preach in detail, Sāriputta, or whether I were to preach both in brief or in detail, Sāriputta, rare are those who understand." (A I 333, Sāriputtasutta)

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SamKR
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby SamKR » Thu May 02, 2013 1:10 am

Hi Retro,

When someone says "there is no self", he could be saying in the sense of ontological annihilationism that was refuted by the Buddha.
Or, he could be saying in the sense of "there is no self to be found in all Dhammas" while directly seeing the phenomena. I think, the latter sense is equivalent to saying "all Dhammas are not self".

:anjali:
Last edited by SamKR on Thu May 02, 2013 1:16 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Paul Davy
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Paul Davy » Thu May 02, 2013 1:15 am

Greetings Sam,

SamKR wrote:When someone says "there is no self", he could be saying in the sense of ontological annihilationism.
OR, he could be saying in the sense of "there is no self to be found in the Dhammas" while directly seeing the phenomena.

Very true... and if there is doubt, that question is worth asking.

However, this matter is not new, and such questions have now and previously been asked and answered.

(I see your edit and agree... the Buddha taught that all dhammas are not-self and "there is no self to be found in all dhammas" is a truthful portrayal of the teaching)

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"Whether I were to preach in brief, Sāriputta, or whether I were to preach in detail, Sāriputta, or whether I were to preach both in brief or in detail, Sāriputta, rare are those who understand." (A I 333, Sāriputtasutta)

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Thu May 02, 2013 7:58 am

robertk wrote:DAN74
The [u]danger of practice which is not rooted in deep mental cultivation that is usually had during long retreats, IMO, is that it is superficial and does not withstand strong blows.[/u] It is easy to feel that the practice is on track, easy to be a nice enough guy, untroubled and often moved to kindness, when life is relatively trouble-free and settled. But when you are suddenly afflicted by chronic pain, you loved ones seem to turn on you, your job is gone, your routine is upset, the clinging that hitherto was subtle and invisible becomes manifest.

Dear Dan
thanks for reading my long post. Just thought I would respond to this and also reply to some of the comments from some other members (not you)suggesting that Sujin and her students make no efforts.
That is the point. The Sujin method is very much a way of doing, a way of choices and effort, as has been repeatedly demonstrated here. But Sujin and her followers also choose to criticize other teachers for their advocating a way of doing and a way of choices and effort by stating that these other teachers' ways are inferior, caught up in lobha and self view, which is nothing more than a strawman argument on the part of Sujin and her followers.
    >> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<<
    -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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Alex123
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Alex123 » Thu May 02, 2013 11:20 am

SamKR wrote:Hi Retro,
When someone says "there is no self", he could be saying in the sense of ontological annihilationism that was refuted by the Buddha.
Or, he could be saying in the sense of "there is no self to be found in all Dhammas" while directly seeing the phenomena. I think, the latter sense is equivalent to saying "all Dhammas are not self".

:anjali:



Maybe anatta means that one should not consider anything that arises as self. This is active practice, while static "There is/isn't self" is a view.
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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Mr Man
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Mr Man » Thu May 02, 2013 12:22 pm

Alex123 wrote:
SamKR wrote:Hi Retro,
When someone says "there is no self", he could be saying in the sense of ontological annihilationism that was refuted by the Buddha.
Or, he could be saying in the sense of "there is no self to be found in all Dhammas" while directly seeing the phenomena. I think, the latter sense is equivalent to saying "all Dhammas are not self".

:anjali:



Maybe anatta means that one should not consider anything that arises as self. This is active practice, while static "There is/isn't self" is a view.


Or the ground where it arises. Or that that knows that it has arisen.

The Anatta-lakkhana Sutta is fairly straight forward.

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby chownah » Thu May 02, 2013 2:28 pm

Alex123 wrote:
Maybe anatta means that one should not consider anything that arises as self. This is active practice, while static "There is/isn't self" is a view.

I agree with this and would take it one step farther by suggesting that the concept of self should ideally not be even considered at all but of course getting to that way of thinking is mostly beyond most of us or perhaps can be realized for only a brief moment when the mind is highly concentrated I guess......don't know for sure......
chownah

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robertk
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby robertk » Fri May 03, 2013 6:04 am

Just to be sure we are all on the same page:
Retro do you accept these statement s from the visiddhimagga

"There is no doer of a deed, or one who reaps the result. Phenomena alone flow on, no other view than this right."Visuddhimagga XIX19"

This is mere mentality-materiality, there is no being, no person"XVIII24

"The mental and material (nama rupa) are really hereBut here is no human being to be found, for it is void and merely fashioned like a doll"

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tiltbillings
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Fri May 03, 2013 6:28 am

robertk wrote:Just to be sure we are all on the same page:
Retro do you accept these statement s from the visiddhimagga

"There is no doer of a deed, or one who reaps the result. Phenomena alone flow on, no other view than this right."Visuddhimagga XIX19"

This is mere mentality-materiality, there is no being, no person"XVIII24

"The mental and material (nama rupa) are really hereBut here is no human being to be found, for it is void and merely fashioned like a doll"
Interestingly, for the same reason there is no "doer" to be found, there is, in fact, no "phenomena" to be found.

The problem with robertk's quotes is, of course, that they are coming from a particular level, or a particular way, of speaking about things. It is not necessarily more true just because it uses impersonal laguage. Reliance on such impersonal language is not without its own danger of misunderstanding for the one who uses it.
    >> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<<
    -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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Paul Davy
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Paul Davy » Fri May 03, 2013 8:46 am

Greetings Robert,

robertk wrote:Just to be sure we are all on the same page:
Retro do you accept these statement s from the visiddhimagga

"There is no doer of a deed, or one who reaps the result. Phenomena alone flow on, no other view than this right."Visuddhimagga XIX19"

This is mere mentality-materiality, there is no being, no person"XVIII24

"The mental and material (nama rupa) are really hereBut here is no human being to be found, for it is void and merely fashioned like a doll"

The Visuddhimagga regards dhammas and nama-rupa as ontological propositions (i.e. as so called "ultimate realities" that either exist or do not) rather than as conditioned phenomenological experiences (sankhata dhamma)... so to that extent the Visuddhimagga and I speak different languages altogether.

SN 12.15 wrote:"Lord, 'Right view, right view,' it is said. To what extent is there right view?"

"By & large, Kaccayana, this world is supported by (takes as its object) a polarity, that of existence & non-existence. But when one sees the origination of the world as it actually is with right discernment, 'non-existence' with reference to the world does not occur to one. When one sees the cessation of the world as it actually is with right discernment, 'existence' with reference to the world does not occur to one.

It is for this reason that I do not even consider Ven.Buddhaghosa to be a stream-entrant, despite his obvious enthusiasm for matters pertaining to the Dhamma. Much of the "thicket of views" he falls into seems to pertain to his (and more broadly, early Theravada's) obsession with refuting the puggalavadins. Sujinism seems like the logical conclusion and ultimate expression of this historical obsession with the puggala.

So to answer your question about whether I "accept" these statements, I do not even "entertain" them, because unlike Buddhaghosa, I have no intention of speculating on that which is beyond range.

SN 35.23 wrote:The Blessed One said, "What is the All? Simply the eye & forms, ear & sounds, nose & aromas, tongue & flavors, body & tactile sensations, intellect & ideas. This, monks, is called the All. Anyone who would say, 'Repudiating this All, I will describe another,' if questioned on what exactly might be the grounds for his statement, would be unable to explain, and furthermore, would be put to grief. Why? Because it lies beyond range."

(well you did ask...)

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"Whether I were to preach in brief, Sāriputta, or whether I were to preach in detail, Sāriputta, or whether I were to preach both in brief or in detail, Sāriputta, rare are those who understand." (A I 333, Sāriputtasutta)

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Dan74 » Fri May 03, 2013 12:29 pm

Do we really need to use terms like "Sujinists" (I know Tilt's already used it) but I just hope that we don't make this a habit, but respect each other as fellow Dhamma practitioners.

It just sounds like a dismissive term, kind of like some folks have been dismissive of what is termed "formal practice."
_/|\_

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby robertk » Fri May 03, 2013 1:28 pm

retrofuturist wrote: i do not even consider Ven.Buddhaghosa to be a stream-entrant, despite his obvious enthusiasm for matters pertaining to the Dhamma. Much of the "thicket of views" he falls into seems to pertain to his (and more broadly, early Theravada's) obsession with refuting the puggalavadins. Sujinism seems like the logical conclusion and ultimate expression of this historical obsession with the puggala.



Metta,
Retro. :)

no problem. i think though that you should recognize that monks, adding up to a concensus of milliions, since and before Buddhaghosa have asserted the same things, and revere the works of Buddhaghosa

so when you say that "However, this matter is not new, and such questions have now and previously been asked and answered." i wonder if you being realistic in expecting followers of Theravada to concede that you have the final word and that Buddhaghosa can be dismissed.

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby kirk5a » Fri May 03, 2013 1:41 pm

robertk wrote:Just to be sure we are all on the same page:
Retro do you accept these statement s from the visiddhimagga

"There is no doer of a deed, or one who reaps the result. Phenomena alone flow on, no other view than this right."Visuddhimagga XIX19"

That sentence is apparently something "the ancients said," quoted by Ven. Buddhaghosa. Now surely it cannot be saying the following is wrong:
A disciple of the noble ones considers this: 'I am not the only one who is owner of my actions, heir to my actions, born of my actions, related through my actions, and have my actions as my arbitrator; who — whatever I do, for good or for evil, to that will I fall heir. To the extent that there are beings — past and future, passing away and re-arising — all beings are the owner of their actions, heir to their actions, born of their actions, related through their actions, and have their actions as their arbitrator. Whatever they do, for good or for evil, to that will they fall heir.' When he/she often reflects on this, the [factors of the] path take birth. He/she sticks with that path, develops it, cultivates it. As he/she sticks with that path, develops it and cultivates it, the fetters are abandoned, the obsessions destroyed.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

The factors of the path take birth. That makes it right view.

So let's look at a few more lines of Ven. Buddhaghosa's quotation:

There is no doer of a deed
Or one who reaps the deed’s result;
Phenomena alone flow on—
No other view than this is right.
And so, while kamma and result
Thus causally maintain their round,
As seed and tree succeed in turn,
No first beginning can be shown.
Nor in the future round of births
Can they be shown not to occur:
Sectarians, not knowing this,
Have failed to gain self-mastery. [603]

http://www.aimwell.org/News/news.html

I think that puts it in a somewhat more complete light.
Last edited by kirk5a on Sun May 19, 2013 2:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230

dhamma follower
Posts: 346
Joined: Fri Nov 06, 2009 5:48 am

Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby dhamma follower » Fri May 03, 2013 3:00 pm

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings DF,

In relation to your question, it is not really answerable because you repeatedly do precisely as Tilt said - you create strawmen arguments and infer that everyone other than you believes in atman. Trying to engage in dialogue on that premise is pointless.

Let's be very clear... "No self" is an unverifiable ontological proposition and the Buddha did not teach it.

The views you express here in this topic seem single-mindedly fixated on maintaining consistency of speech with this unverifiable ontological proposition of "no self" which you appear to present as the centrepiece of the entire Dhamma, despite the fact the Buddha taught the experiential teaching that "all dhammas (experiences) are not self" rather than the ontological proposition that "there is no self". Ontological speculation seems like a thicket of views, rather than a cause that gives rise to liberative wisdom.

To be honest, I think that by grasping so tightly to this unverifiable ontological proposition that there is no self... an inappropriately derived speculative view which is entirely disconnected from the loka of the six-senses, you have bought into a form of intellectual reductionism that is very disconnected from, and often averse to the path of cultivation that the Buddha actually taught.

It is hard to get excited about this.

Metta,
Retro. :)


Dear Retro,

Hmm, you have projected a proposition that I've never presented here: "there's no self" vs "all dhamma are not self". Simply because that line of debate doesn't interest me at all. For me, the Buddha taught anatta, non-self or not self doesn't really matter to me. However, if I were to be asked about that, I would say: "If All dhammas are not self, What is the self that there can have to be?If it beyond everyone's range of experiences, including the Arahants, why bother defending it?"

To be fair, my contention in this thread, has been centered around the understanding of "all dhammas (except Nibann) arise because of conditions". My arguments have been: the idea of formal meditation implies that

1. One thinks that because one has decided to practice (whether concentrating on an object or trying to be aware of whatever appears), wholesomeness and/or wisdom will arise. If not, WHY does one formally meditate? Does'nt that mean that one thinks the decision of practicing (volition) can condition awareness/wholesomeness/wisdom? Does it accord to the truth that any dhamma, including awareness/wholesomeness/wisdom is conditioned ? And volition is NOT the conditions for those dhammas to arise.
2. When one think that volition can indeed conditions dhammas to arise, isn't it a form of self-identification, of I-making?

Another contention that has been stressed is that "hearing the Dhamma and wise considering" are the conditions for wisdom. They them-selves are also conditioned dhammas and should be understood as such. It is not the doing but it is precisely the correct understanding from hearing the Dhamma which conditions further understanding to grow, from intellectual level to direct level. That should be clear from the very beginning that only causes and effects are at work. If one think that apart from elements which are the causes, and element which are effects, there is another element which actively does the practice, then what is it ? If one sees that causes and effects are doing their own work, creating both samsara and the way out of samsara, one doesn't need to argue that one has to practice sila, samadhi, panna, since it is just a conventional way to describe the processes.

The last main point of my contention is that all wholesomeness, be it samatha and vipassana, are rooted in understanding. For samatha, its development is based on the understanding of what is wholesome and what it unwholesome (as they presently have arisen), of the ways to arouse wholesomeness based on samatha object. For vipassana,its development is based on the understanding of the characteristics of realities as they arise as anatta, of the distinction between materiality and mentality, and eventually of the tilakkhana.

I am of the opinion that we (the majority) today have weak level of wisdom, both for samatha and vipassana. We are merely at the stage of learning to investigate the different realities as they arise, to develop more understanding of them, of whatever kind and level, by conditions. That understanding can one day, probably in a rather distant future, result in jhanna or in vipassana insight, but no one can predict when and what. Even now, whether understanding will arise while one is going to the market or one is arguing on an internet forum or while taking a shower, no one can know. All realities can be understood at any time and any place, without one's deciding to.

Eventhough the development of understanding is an extremely long process, every little understanding now, when it arises, reduces attachment and aversion accordingly. Everyone can consider and verify for one-self.

I think although what I have said in this thread can be unpleasant for many, it can be beneficial for some others, just as it has been beneficial to me to have heard that, as well as to many of my friends. By conditions.

Brgrds,
D.F


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