Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

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Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby suriyopama » Tue Feb 04, 2014 6:37 am

Buddha’s Seal of Approval: Understanding The Three Dharma Seals

http://www.alanpeto.com/buddhism/three-dharma-seals/

Alan Peto is saying that the “Three Dharma Seals” are:

1 All Conditioned Phenomena Are Impermanent (Anicca)
2 All Conditioned Phenomena Are Without an Independent Self (Anatta)
3 Nirvana is Perfect Tranquility

He intentionally neglects dukkha and says that the Theravada School is victim of an unfortunate misunderstanding due to an early translation and transmission of scripture.

He quotes Thich Nhat Hanh, but I don't see how he could arrive to that conclusion. As far as I understand it, TNH is not claiming such a thing.

Are there other authors claiming that thing?
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby suttametta » Tue Feb 04, 2014 2:22 pm

suriyopama wrote:Buddha’s Seal of Approval: Understanding The Three Dharma Seals

http://www.alanpeto.com/buddhism/three-dharma-seals/

Alan Peto is saying that the “Three Dharma Seals” are:

1 All Conditioned Phenomena Are Impermanent (Anicca)
2 All Conditioned Phenomena Are Without an Independent Self (Anatta)
3 Nirvana is Perfect Tranquility

He intentionally neglects dukkha and says that the Theravada School is victim of an unfortunate misunderstanding due to an early translation and transmission of scripture.

He quotes Thich Nhat Hanh, but I don't see how he could arrive to that conclusion. As far as I understand it, TNH is not claiming such a thing.

Are there other authors claiming that thing?


I feel some teachers have succumbed to public complaints about "life is suffering," being a negative world view, and they want to out a positive spin. Tanha does mean suffering, discontent, dissatisfaction, and gross emotional reaction, all in one. But Buddha didn't say all life is inevitable suffering. He said suffering is a fact. It's a fact if you desire. If you don't, no suffering. And he taught the path to stop desire. Everyone know Buddha was the blissful one, if not, tell them.
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby Sam Vara » Tue Feb 04, 2014 2:31 pm

Tanha does mean suffering, discontent, dissatisfaction, and gross emotional reaction, all in one.


do you mean Dukkha, or are you saying here that they are the same?
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby Spiny Norman » Tue Feb 04, 2014 2:41 pm

suriyopama wrote:3 Nirvana is Perfect Tranquility


Which means that without the state of Nirvana there isn't perfect tranquillity....so things are unsatisfactory and therefore dukkha is implied anyway.
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby Babadhari » Tue Feb 04, 2014 3:44 pm

suriyopama wrote:Alan Peto is saying that the “Three Dharma Seals” are:

1 All Conditioned Phenomena Are Impermanent (Anicca)
2 All Conditioned Phenomena Are Without an Independent Self (Anatta)
3 Nirvana is Perfect Tranquility




are we talking about two different things????
'Three Dharma Seals' (annica,annata,nibbana) and 'The Three Marks of Existance'(annica,annata,dukkha)
which overlap in 'The Foour Dharma Seals ' (annica,anatta,dukkha & nibbana)?
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Aflame, with birth, aging & death, with sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, & despairs ......

Seeing thus, the disciple of the Noble One grows disenchanted. SN 35.28
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby Mkoll » Tue Feb 04, 2014 4:06 pm

Staying at Savatthi. "Monks, there once was a time when the Dasarahas had a large drum called 'Summoner.' Whenever Summoner was split, the Dasarahas inserted another peg in it, until the time came when Summoner's original wooden body had disappeared and only a conglomeration of pegs remained.

"In the same way, in the course of the future there will be monks who won't listen when discourses that are words of the Tathagata — deep, deep in their meaning, transcendent, connected with emptiness — are being recited. They won't lend ear, won't set their hearts on knowing them, won't regard these teachings as worth grasping or mastering. But they will listen when discourses that are literary works — the works of poets, elegant in sound, elegant in rhetoric, the work of outsiders, words of disciples — are recited. They will lend ear and set their hearts on knowing them. They will regard these teachings as worth grasping & mastering.

"In this way the disappearance of the discourses that are words of the Tathagata — deep, deep in their meaning, transcendent, connected with emptiness — will come about.

"Thus you should train yourselves: 'We will listen when discourses that are words of the Tathagata — deep, deep in their meaning, transcendent, connected with emptiness — are being recited. We will lend ear, will set our hearts on knowing them, will regard these teachings as worth grasping & mastering.' That's how you should train yourselves."
-SN 20.7, Ani Sutta
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby culaavuso » Tue Feb 04, 2014 5:56 pm

Interesting to note is that the common argument for anatta is based on the reality of dukkha:

SN 44.2
SN 44.2: Anuradha Sutta wrote:"What do you think, Anuradha: Is form constant or inconstant?"

"Inconstant, lord."

"And is that which is inconstant easeful or stressful?"

"Stressful, lord."

"And is it proper to regard what is inconstant, stressful, subject to change as: 'This is mine. This is my self. This is what I am'?"

"No, lord."
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby binocular » Tue Feb 04, 2014 5:59 pm

suriyopama wrote:He intentionally neglects dukkha and

says that the Theravada School is victim of an unfortunate misunderstanding due to an early translation and transmission of scripture.


"Whereas some brahmans and contemplatives, living off food given in faith, are addicted to debates such as these — 'You understand this doctrine and discipline? I'm the one who understands this doctrine and discipline. How could you understand this doctrine and discipline? You're practicing wrongly. I'm practicing rightly. I'm being consistent. You're not. What should be said first you said last. What should be said last you said first. What you took so long to think out has been refuted. Your doctrine has been overthrown. You're defeated. Go and try to salvage your doctrine; extricate yourself if you can!' — he abstains from debates such as these. This, too, is part of his virtue."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/ptf/dham ... amma-vaca/
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby binocular » Tue Feb 04, 2014 6:09 pm

There he goes:

It’s Kinda Peaceful Here

The third seal, Nirvana, reveals that all conditioned phenomena are actually tranquil and without suffering. ’Suffering’ is caused by delusion, and that delusion is believing that things will always be this way (permanent) and separate (independent), which is not the case as explained in the first two seals. Nirvana cannot exist seperate of impermanence and nonself. Nirvana is the state (or ‘refuge’) in which you experience perfect tranquility in the here and now. Greed, anger, ignorance, arrogance and doubt are eliminated.

When you put away those rose colored glasses and see the world as it truly is, you can enter the state of Nirvana and not let the suffering caused by these conditions affect you anymore. Even if you don’t achieve Nirvana, understanding and coming to terms with these concepts helps you ‘make those rose colored glasses’ more clear. This way, you can experience and handle life in a new way that benefits you and others.

Ven. Master Hsing Yun explains:

Life is like a turbulent ocean, with crashing waves coming one after another. The continuous movement of the ocean exemplifies the impermanence of all phenomena. But if we can look at the waves through the eyes of the Buddhist sages, we can see that although the waves are turbulent, the nature of water is to be calm. Likewise, life is an endless cycle of birth and death, but our intrinsic nature is a state of perfect peace. Thus, if we want to attain the liberation and tranquility of nirvana, we must realize it in the impermanence and nonself of all phenomena.


In other words, understanding that both things change (impermanence) and that everything is connected (nonself), you can achieve your nature state which is the peace of nirvana.

http://www.alanpeto.com/buddhism/three-dharma-seals/
(emphases mine)


So he appears to maintain that we have a true nature ...

More from the post:

That being said, you will see different Mahayana schools either take the Theravada viewpoint of the Three Seals, or include Dukkha as the fourth seal. I prefer the above approach, but it boils down to what is best for you to understand and apply to your practice. I agree with Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh when he said:

To me, it is much easier to envision a state where there are no obstacles created by concepts than to see all things as suffering. I hope scholars and practitioners will begin to accept the teaching that all things are marked by impermanence, nonself, and nirvana, and not make too great an effort to prove that everything is suffering.


But this is simply arguing against a strawman.

Apart from some popular claims, to the best of my knowledge, the Buddha never said that life is suffering or that everything is suffering.
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby Mkoll » Tue Feb 04, 2014 7:58 pm

culaavuso wrote:Interesting to note is that the common argument for anatta is based on the reality of dukkha:

SN 44.2
SN 44.2: Anuradha Sutta wrote:"What do you think, Anuradha: Is form constant or inconstant?"

"Inconstant, lord."

"And is that which is inconstant easeful or stressful?"

"Stressful, lord."

"And is it proper to regard what is inconstant, stressful, subject to change as: 'This is mine. This is my self. This is what I am'?"

"No, lord."

Yes, it's the argument for those of us who do not yet know and see. But the liberated one sees these three marks in the five aggregates that are "himself" and knows the gratification, danger, and escape from them: Nibbana.

binocular wrote:Apart from some popular claims, to the best of my knowledge, the Buddha never said that life is suffering or that everything is suffering.

Right, he wouldn't have said something so tired and uninspired. Instead, he specifically laid down what is suffering in the first Noble Truth.
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby suriyopama » Wed Feb 05, 2014 3:26 am

Thank you for the comments and Suttas provided. I think that it is very dangerous to try making a “Reader’s Digest” version of Buddhism concentrated in a single web-page. Like most New-Age movements, it is neglecting some of the most basic Buddhist teachings, like the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path.
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby Goofaholix » Wed Feb 05, 2014 4:11 am

kitztack wrote:are we talking about two different things????
'Three Dharma Seals' (annica,annata,nibbana) and 'The Three Marks of Existance'(annica,annata,dukkha)
which overlap in 'The Foour Dharma Seals ' (annica,anatta,dukkha & nibbana)?


The Seals (whether 3 or 4) I assume are a Mahayana naming convention, though most references to the Seals I've found refer to (annica,annata,dukkha).

Replacing Dukkha with Nibbana misses the point of Buddhism, adding it as a fourth Seal is just missing the point of the Seals/Marks I think.
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby suriyopama » Wed Feb 05, 2014 5:41 am

Goofaholix wrote:Replacing Dukkha with Nibbana misses the point of Buddhism, adding it as a fourth Seal is just missing the point of the Seals/Marks I think.



I entirely agree with you. The thing that keeps fueling my ardency in order to maintain the practice on the Buddhist path is dukkha. (and, in certain way, the promise that it can be transcended. But that is not something that I can see or verify for myself right now. So far can only see dukkha, and I maintain faith on the path)

The more I implement “sati”, the more stress I can perceive in many things where I could not see it before. Consequently, my interest on the path is increased.

If I only were able to see happiness and "nirvana" (tranquility) around me, I would just enjoy and live the life without the higher objective of transcending dukkha (since that requires a lot of effort), no matter how much I intellectually acknowledge Anicca and Anatta
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby Goofaholix » Wed Feb 05, 2014 5:48 am

suriyopama wrote:If I only were able to see happiness and "nirvana" (tranquility) around me, I would just enjoy and live the life without the higher objective of transcending dukkha (since that requires a lot of effort), no matter how much I intellectually acknowledge Anicca and Anatta


Without Dukkha, Anicca and Anatta aren't really a problem, without a problem no need for a solution (so no need for Buddhism).
"Proper effort is not the effort to make something particular happen. It is the effort to be aware and awake each moment." - Ajahn Chah
"When we see beyond self, we no longer cling to happiness. When we stop clinging, we can begin to be happy." - Ajahn Chah
"Know and watch your heart. It’s pure but emotions come to colour it." — Ajahn Chah
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby Spiny Norman » Wed Feb 05, 2014 9:10 am

kitztack wrote:
are we talking about two different things????
'Three Dharma Seals' (annica,annata,nibbana) and 'The Three Marks of Existance'(annica,annata,dukkha)
which overlap in 'The Four Dharma Seals ' (annica,anatta,dukkha & nibbana)?


Yes, it looks like the 4 dharma seals, with dukkha airbrushed out. ;)
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby Spiny Norman » Wed Feb 05, 2014 9:11 am

culaavuso wrote:Interesting to note is that the common argument for anatta is based on the reality of dukkha:


Good point.
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby binocular » Wed Feb 05, 2014 10:21 am

There's an old, crude policy employed by so many tyrants and dictators throughout human history - No man, no problem.

If there's a problem, the quickest and thoroughest way seems to be to just get rid of the person who seems to be causing the problem or is pointing at it. To get rid of the person - physically, or metaphyisically ...
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Re: Alan Peto: Anicca/Anatta/Nirvana (no Dukkha)

Postby Mkoll » Wed Feb 05, 2014 5:17 pm

suriyopama wrote:If I only were able to see happiness and "nirvana" (tranquility) around me, I would just enjoy and live the life without the higher objective of transcending dukkha (since that requires a lot of effort), no matter how much I intellectually acknowledge Anicca and Anatta

:goodpost:

Very good point. Dukkha and the knowledge of future dukkha is the "spurs against the horse's flank", if you will, of Buddhist practice.
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