Mt. Sineru

Where members are free to take ideas from the Theravāda Canon out of the Theravāda framework. Here you can question rebirth, kamma (and other contentious issues) as well as examine Theravāda's connection to other paths
DhammaDan
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Joined: Sat Jan 24, 2009 8:19 am

Mt. Sineru

Postby DhammaDan » Tue Feb 03, 2009 5:30 am

Hello all,

I have recently been reading the Visuddhimagga and have once again come across the very confusing description of Mount Sineru. As I have limited experience in studying mythology and symbolism, I will save my interpretations. However, I am curious as to what others think of the mountain, especially our Venerables. Is it to be read literally? Symbolically? What is the true meaning behind Sineru?

For the record, my friend's father is a Hindu Brahman and he has told me he views it as a metaphor for the human body and the "axis mundi" in which the chakras are aligned. Once again, might those in more advanced Buddhist studies also have an interpretation? Thank you for your time.

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Paul Davy
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
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Re: Mt. Sineru

Postby Paul Davy » Tue Feb 03, 2009 5:52 am

Greetings Dan,

I've read someone somewhere suggest that Buddhaghosa's insistence on listing and depicting all these cosmological objects (I know the section you're talking about - it perplexed me on initial inspection too!) is because he misinterpreted what "knower of worlds" means... taking it to be literal rather than referring to the "world" of the Buddha's teachings as defined by the Buddha in suttas such as SN 12.44, SN 35.82 and AN 4.45.

Interesting theory.

Metta,
Retro. :)
What is the final conviction that comes when radical attention is razor-edge sharp? That the object of the mind is mind-made (manomaya). (Ven. Ñāṇananda)

Having understood name-and-form, which is a product of prolificity,
And which is the root of all malady within and without,
He is released from bondage to the root of all maladies,
That Such-like-one is truly known as 'the one who has understood'.
(Snp 3.6)

Element

Re: Mt. Sineru

Postby Element » Tue Feb 03, 2009 10:18 am

retrofuturist wrote:I've read someone somewhere suggest that Buddhaghosa's insistence on listing and depicting all these cosmological objects (I know the section you're talking about - it perplexed me on initial inspection too!) is because he misinterpreted what "knower of worlds" means...

:alien:

DhammaDan
Posts: 27
Joined: Sat Jan 24, 2009 8:19 am

Re: Mt. Sineru

Postby DhammaDan » Wed Feb 04, 2009 7:02 am

That is an interesting point. It seems many Theravadans see the Visuddhimagga as canon/a proper evaluation of the Dhamma and I am sorry to say I may have fallen into that trap for a short time. Haha, well, I guess that's to be left to the professionals.

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mikenz66
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Location: New Zealand

Re: Mt. Sineru

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Feb 04, 2009 7:40 am

Greetings DhammaDan,

As far as my understanding goes the Visuddhimagga is mostly a summary of Vinaya, Sutta, Abhidhamma, and Commentary relevant to the development of sila samadhi and panna. Rejection of the Visudhimagga is therefore actually a rejection of Commentary and/or Abhidhamma, i.e. a "Vinaya-Sutta" approach.

Of course, there's still plenty of this "cosmological" stuff in the Suttas, e.g. DN27 Aganna Sutta: On Knowledge of Beginnings...

Nevertheless

Metta
Mike

Element

Re: Mt. Sineru

Postby Element » Wed Feb 04, 2009 8:12 am

:alien: :alien: :alien:


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