Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby Ben » Wed Jun 22, 2011 4:28 am

Hi Ed,
I had the same thought too!
kind regards

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Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.

Taṃ nadīhi vijānātha:
sobbhesu padaresu ca,
saṇantā yanti kusobbhā,
tuṇhīyanti mahodadhī.

Sutta Nipata 3.725


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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby alan » Wed Jun 22, 2011 5:11 am

Yuk!

manasikara, You are making a basic mistake by assuming the Buddha is not to be trusted, but saying you follow the teachings anyway. Do you see the problem inherent in this position? It will always lead to uncertainty.
It's up to you to read and understand the suttas. Proclaiming an innocent agnosticism is not an acceptable position if you are really serious.
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby manas » Wed Jun 22, 2011 8:04 am

alan wrote:Yuk!

manasikara, You are making a basic mistake by assuming the Buddha is not to be trusted, but saying you follow the teachings anyway. Do you see the problem inherent in this position? It will always lead to uncertainty.
It's up to you to read and understand the suttas. Proclaiming an innocent agnosticism is not an acceptable position if you are really serious.

Hi alan,
I never said that the Buddha is 'not to be trusted'. I ask you to withdraw that comment. I ask that you do so voluntarily, rather than a moderator having to intervene. Because that's a serious accusation to make, and - since I never said such a thing - an untrue one.
Last edited by manas on Thu Jun 23, 2011 3:14 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby Sanghamitta » Wed Jun 22, 2011 8:11 am

manasikara wrote:How do we know that the Buddha was really enlightened, either? We can't see him now, or hear his words directly, other than through suttas recorded millenia ago and handed down by monks, whose integrity and/or accuracy of memory we must rely upon if we are to assume that they are basically unaltered...?

We don't really know, unless we have seen (the truth he speaks of) for ourselves. Believe me, if I see for myself (within) the self-less nature of the five khandhas, I will throw myself to the ground before the Blessed One's feet in gratitude, a thousand times (metaphorically speaking), knowing that he was right all along, and that it was only because he so carefully established his Dispensation here (on Earth) that I had the good fortune to do so; and I will finally feel totally comfortable with calling myself a Buddhist. But if or until that happens, I can't say with certainty that the Buddha is indeed 'rightly self-awakened, blessed and holy'. I follow the Path he (is said to have) laid out for us, because in all my searching over my 42 years, I just can't find a better teacher. I've tried; but no-one else knows as much about the human condition and the ways of the heart-and-mind, as the Buddha does (as recorded in the suttas).

Maybe only the enlightened can truly recognize the enlightened, and the rest of us kind of just muddle along and do our best...?

Perhaps then manisikara you could parse your above post and give the correct interpretation. ?
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby manas » Wed Jun 22, 2011 8:49 am

Sanghamitta wrote:
manasikara wrote:How do we know that the Buddha was really enlightened, either? We can't see him now, or hear his words directly, other than through suttas recorded millenia ago and handed down by monks, whose integrity and/or accuracy of memory we must rely upon if we are to assume that they are basically unaltered...?

We don't really know, unless we have seen (the truth he speaks of) for ourselves. Believe me, if I see for myself (within) the self-less nature of the five khandhas, I will throw myself to the ground before the Blessed One's feet in gratitude, a thousand times (metaphorically speaking), knowing that he was right all along, and that it was only because he so carefully established his Dispensation here (on Earth) that I had the good fortune to do so; and I will finally feel totally comfortable with calling myself a Buddhist. But if or until that happens, I can't say with certainty that the Buddha is indeed 'rightly self-awakened, blessed and holy'. I follow the Path he (is said to have) laid out for us, because in all my searching over my 42 years, I just can't find a better teacher. I've tried; but no-one else knows as much about the human condition and the ways of the heart-and-mind, as the Buddha does (as recorded in the suttas).

Maybe only the enlightened can truly recognize the enlightened, and the rest of us kind of just muddle along and do our best...?

Perhaps then manisikara you could parse your above post and give the correct interpretation. ?

To sum up: Knowing, having seen and realized for oneself, is better than just believing. I don't think the Buddha would feel offended by this statement.
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby Kusala » Wed Jun 22, 2011 10:37 am

Hello Dhamma friends. Please remember the "Kalama Sutta"...
Image

Homage to the Buddha
Thus indeed, is that Blessed One: He is the Holy One, fully enlightened, endowed with clear vision and virtuous conduct, sublime, the Knower of the worlds, the incomparable leader of men to be tamed, the teacher of gods and men, enlightened and blessed.

Homage to the Teachings
The Dhamma of the Blessed One is perfectly expounded; to be seen here and now; not delayed in
time; inviting one to come and see; onward leading (to Nibbana); to be known by the wise, each for himself.
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby Ben » Wed Jun 22, 2011 12:38 pm

Dear Kusala friend,
Kusala wrote:Hello Dhamma friends. Please remember the "Kalama Sutta"...

I do. Is there something about the Kalama Sutta you would like to share?
With reference to the Kalama Sutta, is there a point you would like to make that is germane to this discussion?
kind regards

Ben
Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.

Taṃ nadīhi vijānātha:
sobbhesu padaresu ca,
saṇantā yanti kusobbhā,
tuṇhīyanti mahodadhī.

Sutta Nipata 3.725


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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby Jhana4 » Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:49 pm

I read that sutta recently. This thread is about bogus gurus/teachers. That sutta is about learning how to recognize bogus teachings/teachers and learning how to identify the real thing.
In reading the scriptures, there are two kinds of mistakes:
One mistake is to cling to the literal text and miss the inner principles.
The second mistake is to recognize the principles but not apply them to your own mind, so that you waste time and just make them into causes of entanglement.
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby manas » Thu Jun 23, 2011 12:53 am

Jhana4 wrote:I read that sutta recently. This thread is about bogus gurus/teachers. That sutta is about learning how to recognize bogus teachings/teachers and learning how to identify the real thing.
Thanks Jhana4. :meditate:
That sutta was a defining moment for me, as I felt I had finally found a Teacher of the ancient world who was not only connected with the highest Truth and understanding, but was also reasonable and non-dogmatic. If there was a point at which I first took refuge in the Buddha, that was it.

But, following the Buddha's instructions as they have been handed down to us, and believing in his sammasambodhi, is still not the same as knowing it. In fact, there is a sutta (I am trying to find it again) where the Buddha says that it is only upon attainment of arahantship that a disciple can truly claim that the Buddha is 'the perfectly enlightened one, awake and holy' etc. Until then, he or she doesn't really and fully know. So actually, I was inaccurate to claim that I would have knowledge of the Buddha as being Enlightened to the degree that he was, upon Stream-Entry alone. It actually happens later! (so I read). What I mean is, that apparently with stream entry, doubt is overcome. I do have faith in the Buddha, but I also have some doubt. I can claim to have a measure of conviction, based upon my experiences in the path of practice confirming what is said in the suttas. That's still not the same as saying 'I know and I see'. I'm just being honest about where I'm at. If there are ariyans reading this, you have my respect for having crossed beyond that lingering uncertainty. I aspire to join you some day! :namaste:

That is what I was trying to get at in my post that has seemed to cause offence to some. In deference to the sensibilities of others, I will word it differently in future, and I really need to find that sutta, as well, so I can post the link here.
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby alan » Thu Jun 23, 2011 3:54 am

You are the only one who seems to feel offended here.
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby retrofuturist » Thu Jun 23, 2011 4:03 am

Come on everyone... I think it's time to depersonalise this a bit.

:focus:

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Retro. :)
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Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby alan » Thu Jun 23, 2011 4:16 am

Hi All. For the record:
I don't attack people. I attack ideas. I attack poorly formed arguments, irrational statements, and nonsensical assumptions. I do this to provide clarity, introduce context, and to keep the discussion focused. I don't do it to make people feel bad.
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby alan » Thu Jun 23, 2011 4:35 am

Ok, now let's talk Kalama.
This is easily the most misunderstood of all the frequently quoted suttas. The typical (and always out of context) take is that "we should just trust our own judgement", or
"The Buddha says not to trust anyone", or "Buddhism is a religion that proclaims the individual should decide. You can choose your own path".
None of these are correct, but most have seeped into the ideology of Popular Buddhism to the degree that they are now taken as a given proposition.
This is just another reason to read the suttas for yourself. There is no substitute for an overall understanding of context.
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby whynotme » Thu Jun 23, 2011 5:36 am

This sutta supports manasikara's opinion:

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

And about believing, I think we should be open minded, judge things based on facts, reason and logic. We can have our own conclusions but should change them if there are new facts and evidences. And for unclear things, we should use probability science. And for things that we don't have any clue, we could gamble and let the dice (or kamma) decide :rolleye:

Regards.
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Jun 23, 2011 6:01 am

alan wrote:Hi All. For the record:
I don't attack people. I attack ideas. I attack poorly formed arguments, irrational statements, and nonsensical assumptions. I do this to provide clarity, introduce context, and to keep the discussion focused. I don't do it to make people feel bad.
But people sometimes do feel badly, given that it is not always easy to separate out one's feelings from what is being said. We could all, at times, be a bit more sensitive to that.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
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Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby chownah » Thu Jun 23, 2011 6:40 am

My view is that not only should we trust our own judgement but that our own judgement is the only thing we have so better start sharpening that judgement or it is likely to lead you astray.
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby whynotme » Thu Jun 23, 2011 6:43 am

chownah wrote:My view is that not only should we trust our own judgement but that our own judgement is the only thing we have so better start sharpening that judgement or it is likely to lead you astray.
chownah

Well said, I totally agree

:thumbsup:
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby manas » Thu Jun 23, 2011 8:05 am

whynotme wrote:This sutta supports manasikara's opinion:

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

And about believing, I think we should be open minded, judge things based on facts, reason and logic. We can have our own conclusions but should change them if there are new facts and evidences. And for unclear things, we should use probability science. And for things that we don't have any clue, we could gamble and let the dice (or kamma) decide :rolleye:

Regards.

Whynotme,
thank you for posting the link to that sutta. I had completely forgotten about the 'elephant' in the title, that's why i could not relocate it. A relevant excerpt regarding my previous post:

"...thus — by means of the divine eye, purified and surpassing the human — he sees beings passing away and re-appearing, and he discerns how they are inferior and superior, beautiful and ugly, fortunate and unfortunate in accordance with their kamma.

This, too, is called a footprint of the Tathagata, a scratch mark of the Tathagata, a tusk slash of the Tathagata, but a disciple of the noble ones would not yet come to the conclusion, 'The Blessed One is rightly self-awakened; the Dhamma is well-taught by the Blessed One; the Sangha of the Blessed One's disciples has practiced rightly."


...so the disciple, already a noble one, acquires the Divine Eye, and still "would not yet come to the conclusion, 'The Blessed One is rightly self-awakened; the Dhamma is well-taught by the Blessed One; the Sangha of the Blessed One's disciples has practiced rightly." :o !

It's only with the destruction of the asavas that the disciple finally confirms it:

"His heart, thus knowing, thus seeing, is released from the fermentation of sensuality, the fermentation of becoming, the fermentation of ignorance. With release, there is the knowledge, 'Released.' He discerns that 'Birth is ended, the holy life fulfilled, the task done. There is nothing further for this world.'

"This, too, is called a footprint of the Tathagata, a scratch mark of the Tathagata, a tusk slash of the Tathagata, and it is here that a disciple of the noble ones has come to conclusion: 'The Blessed One is rightly self-awakened; the Dhamma is well-taught by the Blessed One; the Sangha of the Blessed One's disciples has practiced rightly.'"

:anjali:
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby pegembara » Thu Jun 23, 2011 8:44 am

"Bhikkhus, the Dhamma well proclaimed by me thus is frank, open, evident, and stripped of padding. In this Dhamma well proclaimed by me thus, any who have simply faith in me, simply love for me, are destined for heaven."

MN 22


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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby cooran » Thu Jun 23, 2011 9:36 am

Hello pegembara,

Would you mind pointing out exactly where in the Sutta the verse you quote can be found. Here are two translations - one by Thanissaro Bhikkhu and the other
Nyanaponika Thera:

MN 22 - Alagaddupama Sutta: The Water-Snake Simile
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .nypo.html

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