The definition of a stream winner and other questions.

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The definition of a stream winner and other questions.

Postby Individual » Fri May 08, 2009 6:38 am

A stream-winner is defined as one who has eradicted the three fetters -- self-view (Sakkaya-ditthi), Skeptical Doubt (Vicikiccha), and Attachment to rites and rituals (Silabatta-paramassa)

Five questions:
#1. Is self-view the intellectual belief in a self or the habitual thought-patterns? That is, is the overcoming of this fetter the overcoming of the intellectual belief, "I am this or that," or is it the deeper overcoming of the habitual thought-pattern of thinking in terms of self, which leads to unskillful behaviors?

#2. Similarly, is overcoming skeptical doubt overcoming the surface skepticism of Buddhism, or is it the deeper practice of daily confidence in one's right actions?

#3. Could Silabatta-paramassa possibly be more accurately translated or understood as "beliefs and practices"? Because in English, the definitions of "rite" and "ritual" are very close (a religious rite is the same as a religious ritual, essentially).

#4. Can the rites and rituals, or beliefs and practices of Classical Theravada be an object of attachment or craving?

#5. I have heard that a stream-winner is incapable of faltering (being enlightened after 7 rebirths). Doesn't this contradict impermanence? Not simply is a stream-winner, once-returner, non-returner, and Arahant physically subject to decay, but aren't their mental states, their discipline and concentration, aren't these things too subject to decay?
The best things in life aren't things.

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Re: The definition of a stream winner and other questions.

Postby Zom » Fri May 08, 2009 7:14 pm

There are some suttas about "the one, who will gain stream-entry for sure in this life".
I personally think this is sotapattimagga - the one who will be sotapattiphala (though I know that abhidhamma says differently about that).
And what is more - he didn't yet drop 3 lower fetters - but he will also gain nibbana in 7 lifes for sure (because he will gain stream-entry for sure).

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
More - http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... ml#okkanta (Okkanta-samyutta — Entering)

About 5th question - Sotapanna spiritual qualities are too strong to decline. They are impermanent, yes, but too strong to ruin too quick, you see? -)
So no possibility that he will "fall", and so there's a 100% guarantee that he will reach full-enlightenment.
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