Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby Mkoll » Sun Dec 08, 2013 6:44 am

Dear Ven. Dhammanando,

Thank you for your post on Ajahn Maha Bua. That was very nice to read. A comment and a question...

Dhammanando wrote:I don’t personally know of any Thai monastery of which I could say: “All (or most) of the monks living there both observe the Vinaya well and avoid the extremes of eternalism and annihilationism.” One can say this of individual bhikkhus, but one can’t say that such a thing prevails in any community that I know of.

Nor even in the Buddha's day with the Buddha as a teacher no less!

For this reason, I think it's desirable that a monk in his formative years should gain experience in both urban pariyatti and forest kammaṭṭhāna wats, taking what's best from both of them and then, when's he's got ten rains under his belt, getting the hell away from them.

And where would you suggest he go from there?
When this is, that is.
From the arising of this comes the arising of that.
When this isn't, that isn't.
From the cessation of this comes the cessation of that.
-SN 12.61

Ex nihilo nihil fit.

Peace,
James
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby Dhammanando » Sun Dec 08, 2013 7:00 am

greenjuice wrote:Being that there is no seeing or perception in Nibbana, but unmediated knowledge, they could have talked without Mun literally seeing Buddha. Their conversation could have been supramundane, with Mun seeing Buddha in some transcendental way.

Just throwing ideas around..


So is this chap:

    “Supposing the Pope looked up and saw a cloud and said ‘It's going to rain’, would that be bound to happen?”
    “Oh, yes, Father.”
    “But supposing it didn't?”
    He thought a moment and said: “I suppose it could be sort of raining spiritually, only we were too sinful to see it.”
    — Evelyn Waugh, Brideshead Revisited


But I'm afraid that the notion of a "supramundane transcendental conversation involving no perception" is as meaningless to me as the spiritual rainfall that I’m too sinful to see.
    ...and this thought arose in the mind of the Blessed One:
    “Who lives without reverence lives miserably.”
    Uruvela Sutta, A.ii.20

    It were endless to dispute upon everything that is disputable.
    — William Penn Some Fruits of Solitude,
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby Dhammanando » Sun Dec 08, 2013 7:27 am

Mkoll wrote:And where would you suggest he go from there?


It will vary from one monk to another, but as advised in the Vanapatha Sutta, he should go to a place where “...his unestablished mindfulness becomes established, his unconcentrated mind becomes concentrated, his undestroyed taints come to destruction, and where he attains the unattained supreme security from bondage.”

Jungle Thickets

If a monk's put his first ten years to good use, then he should have a good idea what sort of place will be optimal for this.


[btw. This is likely to be my last post until the New Year as I'll be leaving shortly and going to an internet-free location]
    ...and this thought arose in the mind of the Blessed One:
    “Who lives without reverence lives miserably.”
    Uruvela Sutta, A.ii.20

    It were endless to dispute upon everything that is disputable.
    — William Penn Some Fruits of Solitude,
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby tiltbillings » Sun Dec 08, 2013 7:29 am

Dhammanando wrote:I'll be leaving shortly and going to an internet-free location]
Lucky you, but your input will be missed.
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.
"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby Mkoll » Sun Dec 08, 2013 7:48 am

Thanks Bhante.

tiltbillings wrote:
Dhammanando wrote:I'll be leaving shortly and going to an internet-free location]
Lucky you, but your input will be missed.

:anjali:
When this is, that is.
From the arising of this comes the arising of that.
When this isn't, that isn't.
From the cessation of this comes the cessation of that.
-SN 12.61

Ex nihilo nihil fit.

Peace,
James
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby Mr Man » Sun Dec 08, 2013 9:26 am

Dhammanando wrote:
Clarence wrote:Nice stories Dhammanando.

Just curious but is there a place you would deem appropriate to stay at? Where both the Vinaya and the practice are uphold according to orthodox standards?


I don’t personally know of any Thai monastery of which I could say: “All (or most) of the monks living there both observe the Vinaya well and avoid the extremes of eternalism and annihilationism.” One can say this of individual bhikkhus, but one can’t say that such a thing prevails in any community that I know of. Generally, in a wat where all the monks observe the Vinaya well the prevailing view will be semi-eternalist, or sometimes even full-blown eternalist, while in a wat where right view prevails the observance of Vinaya will be lax.

(It would appear this tendency is not a new one. I recall that one Chinese pilgrim to India, after visiting numerous monasteries all over the sub-continent, reported that the strictest Vinaya observance was to be found in those of the Pudgalavādin schools).

For this reason, I think it's desirable that a monk in his formative years should gain experience in both urban pariyatti and forest kammaṭṭhāna wats, taking what's best from both of them and then, when's he's got ten rains under his belt, getting the hell away from them.


When do eternalist and annihilationist views drop away?

So right view = lax vinaya....hmm. Is right view an intellectual positioning or a condition for awakening?

Sounds like Bhante follows a path led by his proclivities.

:anjali:
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby BlackBird » Sun Dec 08, 2013 9:42 am

Great posts Bhante, appreciate the insight. Is Ajahn Maha Boowa's monasteries still good places to stay?

metta
Jack
"And so, because this Teaching is so different from what Westerners are accustomed to, they will try to adapt the Teaching to their own framework. What they need to learn to do is not to adapt the Teaching to their own point of view but to adapt their own point of view to the Teaching. This is called saddhá, or faith, and it means giving oneself to the Teaching even if the Teaching is contrary to one’s own preconceived notions of the way things are."- Ven Bodhesako

Nanavira Thera's teachings - An existential approach to the Dhamma | Ven. Bodhesako's essay on anicca
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby Sokehi » Sun Dec 08, 2013 11:29 am

BlackBird wrote:There are many elements within the biography which contradict the word of the Buddha of the Sutta Pitaka. I will happily if you desire, over the coming months make a re-reading of the biography, and then make lists of sutta quotes to contradict each point of contention I find, by memory there were many.


If you really put that work on your shoulders I'd be happy to read through your findings and comparisons. I'm really interested in this since I can't get motivated to read through that work again. It would certainly help to put that discussion on a whole new level. Thank you beforehand!

:anjali:
Get the wanting out of waiting

If they take what's yours, tell yourself that you're making it a gift.
Otherwise there will be no end to the animosity. - Ajaan Fuang Jotiko
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby Clarence » Sun Dec 08, 2013 2:07 pm

Dhammanando wrote:
Clarence wrote:Nice stories Dhammanando.

Just curious but is there a place you would deem appropriate to stay at? Where both the Vinaya and the practice are uphold according to orthodox standards?


I don’t personally know of any Thai monastery of which I could say: “All (or most) of the monks living there both observe the Vinaya well and avoid the extremes of eternalism and annihilationism.” One can say this of individual bhikkhus, but one can’t say that such a thing prevails in any community that I know of. Generally, in a wat where all the monks observe the Vinaya well the prevailing view will be semi-eternalist, or sometimes even full-blown eternalist, while in a wat where right view prevails the observance of Vinaya will be lax.

(It would appear this tendency is not a new one. I recall that one Chinese pilgrim to India, after visiting numerous monasteries all over the sub-continent, reported that the strictest Vinaya observance was to be found in those of the Pudgalavādin schools).

For this reason, I think it's desirable that a monk in his formative years should gain experience in both urban pariyatti and forest kammaṭṭhāna wats, taking what's best from both of them and then, when's he's got ten rains under his belt, getting the hell away from them.


Thanks for that. Interesting.
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby greenjuice » Sun Dec 08, 2013 7:30 pm

Dhammanando wrote:But I'm afraid that the notion of a "supramundane transcendental conversation involving no perception" is as meaningless to me as the spiritual rainfall that I’m too sinful to see.

But remembering one‘s past lives, reading thoughts of others or seeing their kamma isn‘t?
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby Thule » Sun Dec 08, 2013 7:49 pm

There's a nice talk on Ajahn Maha Boowa by Ajahn Pasanno:
http://www.abhayagiri.org/audio/ap-refl ... ssing-away

He must have been quite a character.
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby dagon » Sun Dec 08, 2013 8:35 pm

Thule wrote:There's a nice talk on Ajahn Maha Boowa by Ajahn Pasanno:
http://www.abhayagiri.org/audio/ap-refl ... ssing-away

He must have been quite a character.


He was and he did have a very positive impact on the spiritual lives of lay people who he came in contact with - at least those without too much dust in their eyes. My respect to a good monk.

metta
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby BlackBird » Sun Dec 08, 2013 9:14 pm

I would also add that I have a very deep respect for Ven. Maha Boowa and his accomplishments as a monk, his teachings are not my cup of tea, but that is one thing and his life as a monk another.

If you really put that work on your shoulders I'd be happy to read through your findings and comparisons. I'm really interested in this since I can't get motivated to read through that work again. It would certainly help to put that discussion on a whole new level. Thank you beforehand!


It was more a suggestion to Kirk that it is more than possible to do so. The evidence is all there. It would be a lot of work, but if it allows people to see that there are some very major discrepencies between the Dhamma presented in the hagiography of Ajahn Mun and the Dhamma of the Buddha in the Sutta pitaka, I think there could be some positive benefits. I must ensure though that it such work is coming from the right place and not from greed, hatred or delusion. I am also a very busy man, between work, basketball & meditation I don't find much time for other stuff. But I will give it some thought over the coming week.

metta
Jack
"And so, because this Teaching is so different from what Westerners are accustomed to, they will try to adapt the Teaching to their own framework. What they need to learn to do is not to adapt the Teaching to their own point of view but to adapt their own point of view to the Teaching. This is called saddhá, or faith, and it means giving oneself to the Teaching even if the Teaching is contrary to one’s own preconceived notions of the way things are."- Ven Bodhesako

Nanavira Thera's teachings - An existential approach to the Dhamma | Ven. Bodhesako's essay on anicca
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby dagon » Sun Dec 08, 2013 10:15 pm

BlackBird wrote:I would also add that I have a very deep respect for Ven. Maha Boowa and his accomplishments as a monk, his teachings are not my cup of tea, but that is one thing and his life as a monk another.

If you really put that work on your shoulders I'd be happy to read through your findings and comparisons. I'm really interested in this since I can't get motivated to read through that work again. It would certainly help to put that discussion on a whole new level. Thank you beforehand!


It was more a suggestion to Kirk that it is more than possible to do so. The evidence is all there. It would be a lot of work, but if it allows people to see that there are some very major discrepencies between the Dhamma presented in the hagiography of Ajahn Mun and the Dhamma of the Buddha in the Sutta pitaka, I think there could be some positive benefits. I must ensure though that it such work is coming from the right place and not from greed, hatred or delusion. I am also a very busy man, between work, basketball & meditation I don't find much time for other stuff. But I will give it some thought over the coming week.

metta
Jack


Something’s that you may wish to consider in making you decisions.

We talk about the book that was written, when what we have seen is the book that was published and then translated.

Consider the situation the situation at the time, politically, socially, what occurring within religious institution and the interaction of all of those things. Let me put that another way. Everyone needs heroes and countries that are facing uncertain times even more. Taking those factors into account I cannot even be bothered to finish reading it.

To put that in context I am in the process of going through all of the other material with my wife – translating from as origin sources as I can get. I value what he taught in the context that he taught.

Metta
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby BlackBird » Sun Dec 08, 2013 10:43 pm

dagon wrote:
BlackBird wrote:I would also add that I have a very deep respect for Ven. Maha Boowa and his accomplishments as a monk, his teachings are not my cup of tea, but that is one thing and his life as a monk another.

If you really put that work on your shoulders I'd be happy to read through your findings and comparisons. I'm really interested in this since I can't get motivated to read through that work again. It would certainly help to put that discussion on a whole new level. Thank you beforehand!


It was more a suggestion to Kirk that it is more than possible to do so. The evidence is all there. It would be a lot of work, but if it allows people to see that there are some very major discrepencies between the Dhamma presented in the hagiography of Ajahn Mun and the Dhamma of the Buddha in the Sutta pitaka, I think there could be some positive benefits. I must ensure though that it such work is coming from the right place and not from greed, hatred or delusion. I am also a very busy man, between work, basketball & meditation I don't find much time for other stuff. But I will give it some thought over the coming week.

metta
Jack


Something’s that you may wish to consider in making you decisions.

We talk about the book that was written, when what we have seen is the book that was published and then translated.

Consider the situation the situation at the time, politically, socially, what occurring within religious institution and the interaction of all of those things. Let me put that another way. Everyone needs heroes and countries that are facing uncertain times even more. Taking those factors into account I cannot even be bothered to finish reading it.

To put that in context I am in the process of going through all of the other material with my wife – translating from as origin sources as I can get. I value what he taught in the context that he taught.

Metta
dagon


Hi Dagon

Does this post I made earlier align with what you have said above?

Blackbird wrote:...And on the smoking point I wholeheartedly agree - This was the early half of the 1900's when Doctors prescribed smoking for supposed health benefits, rural Thais thought smoking was a medicine, and treated it as such.

Look these are monks who often had no access to the Suttas, these are monks who relied on Vinaya and meditation for the most part - Spending years at a time in seclusion in the depths of the Thai rainforest. Almost all of them contracted Malaria, time and time again. Their accounts and recollections must be remembered in the context of rural Thai culture of the early 1900s. This was a time before Western culture, medicine & technology had penetrated to that area. In a sense, it wasn't much different then than it had been 300 years earlier.

Whether or not you agree with Ven. Maha Boowas 'forest Dhamma' with it's eternal Buddhas and cittas that can descend from Nibbana and visit people at will, which in my opinion is closer to Mahayana than Theravada, one should not forget the positives these great men brought to Thai Buddhism - The revival of the Vinaya, of Meditation, of the kammathana - Practices that the Buddha would have praised! I personally think the Ajahn Mun of history and the one from the biography are quite different people...

- viewtopic.php?f=16&t=19302&start=20#p270388

Thanks for the input (not being sarcastic, promise)

metta
Jack
"And so, because this Teaching is so different from what Westerners are accustomed to, they will try to adapt the Teaching to their own framework. What they need to learn to do is not to adapt the Teaching to their own point of view but to adapt their own point of view to the Teaching. This is called saddhá, or faith, and it means giving oneself to the Teaching even if the Teaching is contrary to one’s own preconceived notions of the way things are."- Ven Bodhesako

Nanavira Thera's teachings - An existential approach to the Dhamma | Ven. Bodhesako's essay on anicca
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby dagon » Mon Dec 09, 2013 6:36 am

Greetings Jack

The post of yours that you had linked was in my view one of the more constructive ones made here.

I would agree with you about Ajahn Lee’s work – if I was going to recommend a text to some one that would inform then about Ajahn Mun I would go with that in preference.

You did make a comment about things not changing in Isaan for 300 years – I think I know what you were getting at but without understanding the 300 years that you were talking about it is hard to imagine who an accomplished monk would have anything to do with a book that I believe is so nationalistic.

You may find this article http://aircommandoman.tripod.com/id47.html enlightening in this regard and help you to understand the subtext of my post. It is very easy to get trapped into perceptions of permanency and as we know ….

The reference to being without access to the Pali Cannon I would have some reservation about as well. Education in Thailand was and (unfortunately) still is about route learning rather than an inquiry based education system that promotes understanding. It was in part a rejection of this approach that lead Ajahn Mun to reject the academic based focus of the Thai Buddhist elite and head off on his own personal journey involving a focus on meditation. The omissions in that part of the journey was what first triggered my suspicions about the nationalistic nature of the book – but that could just be a product of my own attachments and aversions.

As for my understanding of the Ajahn’s teaching; I have “post – it- notes”, not labels and I have no intention of speculating on the forum as to what they intended to teach – there are plenty of other people here who are willing to do that.

Not sure if that answers you question.

Sarcasm – the idea did not enter my head until I mentioned it. I personally doubt that is was you intention and even if it was I would view that as something that for you to worry about , not me.

With respect

dagon
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby BlackBird » Mon Dec 09, 2013 10:13 am

Sarcasm - You're right, it is out of my own concern and formed in part by experience with people on these forums.

Regarding your link, I'll check it out tommorow when I have some time - Thank you for your post. RE: Lack of sutta knowledge. I was thinking perhaps Ajahn Mun had quite a decent knowledge therein, I seem to recall reading somewhere that in the beginning of his time as a monk he had spent a good deal of time learning suttas. It is those who came after him (and I only have the hagiography to go on there) that I felt perhaps had lack of interest in gaining a thorough reading of the Suttas so perhaps there was some unnecessary ambiguity there on my part which did not serve us well.

I am far from a Thai Scholar, and my knowledge of the nationalism of Thai monks or otherwise is woefully deficient, so I think perhaps you're treating me as an adult in this area when I am in fact a child (one who could certainly benefit from some further understanding) and that considered I would be very careful to limit the scope of any such future comparison between Ajahn Maha Boowa's doctrine and the Sutta Pitaka to doctrine alone and not to draw any anthropological conclusions (despite the temptation).

More tomorrow

metta
Jack
"And so, because this Teaching is so different from what Westerners are accustomed to, they will try to adapt the Teaching to their own framework. What they need to learn to do is not to adapt the Teaching to their own point of view but to adapt their own point of view to the Teaching. This is called saddhá, or faith, and it means giving oneself to the Teaching even if the Teaching is contrary to one’s own preconceived notions of the way things are."- Ven Bodhesako

Nanavira Thera's teachings - An existential approach to the Dhamma | Ven. Bodhesako's essay on anicca
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby mikenz66 » Mon Dec 09, 2013 10:58 am

BlackBird wrote:I was thinking perhaps Ajahn Mun had quite a decent knowledge therein, I seem to recall reading somewhere that in the beginning of his time as a monk he had spent a good deal of time learning suttas. It is those who came after him (and I only have the hagiography to go on there) that I felt perhaps had lack of interest in gaining a thorough reading of the Suttas so perhaps there was some unnecessary ambiguity there on my part which did not serve us well.

It seems that Ajahn Chah and Ajahn Maha Bua also went though all levels of Pali study as well. Unfortunately, there are a number of Ajahn Chah soundbites that often get wheeled out without the proper context...

:anjali:
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby Thule » Mon Dec 09, 2013 11:35 am

BlackBird wrote:...I would be very careful to limit the scope of any such future comparison between Ajahn Maha Boowa's doctrine and the Sutta Pitaka to doctrine alone and not to draw any anthropological conclusions (despite the temptation).

It would be nice to see such a comparison, but I think that it might be more interesting if instead of that "Spiritual Biography" you would use "Arahattamagga - Arahattaphala" (tr. Ajaan Dick Silaratano) or "Straight from the Heart" (tr. Thanissaro Bhikkhu). They are more about Ajahn Maha Boowa's practice and "doctrine", and a lot shorter too...

http://www.forestdhamma.org/ebooks/engl ... aphala.pdf
http://www.forestdhamma.org/ebooks/engl ... _Heart.pdf
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Re: Buddha talked to Acharn Mun?

Postby dagon » Mon Dec 09, 2013 12:02 pm

Thule wrote:
BlackBird wrote:...I would be very careful to limit the scope of any such future comparison between Ajahn Maha Boowa's doctrine and the Sutta Pitaka to doctrine alone and not to draw any anthropological conclusions (despite the temptation).

It would be nice to see such a comparison, but I think that it might be more interesting if instead of that "Spiritual Biography" you would use "Arahattamagga - Arahattaphala" (tr. Ajaan Dick Silaratano) or "Straight from the Heart" (tr. Thanissaro Bhikkhu). They are more about Ajahn Maha Boowa's practice and "doctrine", and a lot shorter too...

http://www.forestdhamma.org/ebooks/engl ... aphala.pdf
http://www.forestdhamma.org/ebooks/engl ... _Heart.pdf


You may find this interesting - The teachings of Than Acharn Maha Bua
http://www.forestdhammatalks.org/EnglishV.html

metta

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