retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Dan,
I think a lot of what we see in the Tipitaka is there because it is "well spoken" rather than the literal word of Buddha.
My concerns are that we're then relying on someone else's (other than the Buddha's) assessment that the comment is indeed "well spoken". Some things may seem "well spoken" on one level, but may not turn out to be so "well spoken" after all when viewed in light of other, more "well spoken" comments.
I'm happy to read and take on board that which is "well spoken" but I do have a definitive preference for knowing who in fact spoke it, as this influences my certainty that it truly is "well spoken" on the most deep and profound of levels.
To me, this is one of the main drawcards of Theravada Buddhism. That is, more direct (though not perfect, of course) access to the teachings of the historical Buddha, than things "well spoken" in his name by people who weren't Buddhas.
Too true. Too true.