awakening myth?

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Re: awakening myth?

Postby daniel p » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:04 am

So logically,
if it is a myth I could practice dilligently my whole life and never know it is.
or if it is not a myth then I could practice dilligently my whole life and maybe know it is, if I progress to the end.

If I was to meet a buddha I may not recognise them as such.


I love this.
Now I can practice with confidence ;)
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Re: awakening myth?

Postby daniel p » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:07 am

Bankei wrote:Was the Buddha a Buddha?


yeah man, like totally!
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Re: awakening myth?

Postby daniel p » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:10 am

Goedert wrote:
daniel p wrote:Is awakening (in the Buddhist sense) a myth?
It is assumed that many great teachers were awakened. But were/are they really? One is generally discouraged from making enlightenment the focus or goal of one's practice. But occasionally we find ourselves questioning why we are even practicing.There may be some benefit, but if there is no enlightenment then why practice? Why even consider the teachings? Or to phrase it another way, does the path leading to the cessatation of dukkha actually lead to the cessatation of dukkha?


Hi daniel.

I have to say something for you.

There is a great differance in the interpretation of awakening in the sects of Buddhism. In the Theravadin contest, no, awakening is not myth but a reality that can be achieved by any human being and deva.

We should avoid "mix" the sects, they appear very similiar supeficially but in deepness they are way ahead different.

As tiltbilings said in another thread, enlightenment is to "lighten up".



Surely truth is truth no matter which sect.
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Re: awakening myth?

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:23 am

daniel p wrote:Surely truth is truth no matter which sect.

One would hope so. But I think that one of the problems that Goedert is pointing to is that different schools use different terminology, and mixing them can lead to a lot of confusion.

Mike
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Re: awakening myth?

Postby daniel p » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:27 am

Paññāsikhara wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
daniel p wrote:perhaps I should emphasise cessatation
What do you mean by cessation?


The cessation of doubt would be a good place to start. :sage:


Yes, I do recognise doubt as one of the five hinderances. This is an area I am still trying to understand fully. It does seem open to interpretation. I think one should not be too cynical in ones doubts, dismissing all things that are not completely prooven. But one should also be careful not to fall into blind dogma. Otherwise I would adopt any religion or creed I came across.

Disagree? then I have a lovely bridge to sell you, at an unbeatable price. :twothumbsup:
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Re: awakening myth?

Postby daniel p » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:30 am

mikenz66 wrote:
daniel p wrote:Surely truth is truth no matter which sect.

One would hope so. But I think that one of the problems that Goedert is pointing to is that different schools use different terminology, and mixing them can lead to a lot of confusion.

Mike


Yes. I agree

kia ora.
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Re: awakening myth?

Postby christopher::: » Wed Sep 08, 2010 7:36 am

daniel p wrote:

The cessation of doubt would be a good place to start. :sage:


Yes, I do recognise doubt as one of the five hinderances. This is an area I am still trying to understand fully. It does seem open to interpretation. I think one should not be too cynical in ones doubts, dismissing all things that are not completely prooven. But one should also be careful not to fall into blind dogma. Otherwise I would adopt any religion or creed I came across.



Having some doubts about things we cannot know or experience presently or that sound a bit too metaphysical is not a problem, imo. Where doubt becomes a hindrance is if you doubt the path, the process that leads to greater happiness, less suffering.

the beauty of the dharma though, just check it out and see for yourself.

In my case i learned meditation almost 30 years ago. The results were pretty unmistakable in just the first few days. That's the best way to vanquish doubt, imo.

:anjali:
"As Buddhists, we should aim to develop relationships that are not predominated by grasping and clinging. Our relationships should be characterised by the brahmaviharas of metta (loving kindness), mudita (sympathetic joy), karuna (compassion), and upekkha (equanimity)."
~post by Ben, Jul 02, 2009
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Re: awakening myth?

Postby Reductor » Wed Sep 08, 2010 7:42 am

daniel p wrote:
I love this.
Now I can practice with confidence ;)


Sure you can! Of course! why not? Come on, just do it! Keep a stiff upper lip! Take it in stride! What have you got to lose?

If you practice then you at least gain a hobby, but very likely an increase of peace of mind too (ask anyone here). Whether or not the practice goes all the way to the end of suffering, to enlightenment, is only demonstrable to yourself by accomplishing it.

In the beginning you have to be content with small returns on practice. As the benefits become steadier and more pronounced you might then have more confidence in the big promise. If you just force yourself to accept a notion or promise that is totally alien to you, you'll just have more resistance. And then you're even further from accomplishing anything of value.
Michael

The thoughts I've expressed in the above post are carefully considered and offered in good faith.

And friendliness towards the world is happiness for him who is forbearing with living beings. -- Ud. 2:1
To his own ruin the fool gains knowledge, for it cleaves his head and destroys his innate goodness. -- Dhp 72

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Re: awakening myth?

Postby Paññāsikhara » Wed Sep 08, 2010 8:43 am

Kia ora, Daniel. Are you from Aotearoa?

When we begin the path, we ourselves are quite unqualified and unable to identify who or what is awakened.
We may, however, be able to identify some people who have virtuous qualities that are worthy of emulation.
Begin there. Emulate those people, learn from them, and follow their advice.
As our own virtuous qualities develop, we will be qualified to identify more subtle levels of virtuous states, in others.
Then find people who are even more highly developed, and emulate them, learn from them.
As we progress, we will gradually be able to assess the many virtuous qualities in a range of persons, including ourselves.

So, rather than simply falling into doubt about whether or not awakening is possible while we ourselves are simply unable to identify such qualities that awakening may entail, begin from where we are. One cannot walk the whole path in a single step, but one can certainly take one step at a time.
My recently moved Blog, containing some of my writings on the Buddha Dhamma, as well as a number of translations from classical Buddhist texts and modern authors, liturgy, etc.: Huifeng's Prajnacara Blog.
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Re: awakening myth?

Postby Cittasanto » Wed Sep 08, 2010 12:57 pm

Paññāsikhara wrote:Kia ora, Daniel. Are you from Aotearoa?

When we begin the path, we ourselves are quite unqualified and unable to identify who or what is awakened.
We may, however, be able to identify some people who have virtuous qualities that are worthy of emulation.
Begin there. Emulate those people, learn from them, and follow their advice.
As our own virtuous qualities develop, we will be qualified to identify more subtle levels of virtuous states, in others.
Then find people who are even more highly developed, and emulate them, learn from them.
As we progress, we will gradually be able to assess the many virtuous qualities in a range of persons, including ourselves.

So, rather than simply falling into doubt about whether or not awakening is possible while we ourselves are simply unable to identify such qualities that awakening may entail, begin from where we are. One cannot walk the whole path in a single step, but one can certainly take one step at a time.


:anjali: :twothumbsup: :anjali:
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: awakening myth?

Postby Anicca » Wed Sep 08, 2010 4:12 pm

A simple truth - from Ajaan Dune quoted from "Gifts He Left Behind":

A well-read layman was conversing with Luang Pu, saying, "I firmly believe that in our present day and age there are not just a few monks who have practiced to the point of reaching the paths, fruitions, and nibbana. So why don't they make their knowledge public, so that those who are interested in the practice will know of the levels of Dhamma they have attained, as a way of giving them encouragement and hope so that they'll accelerate their efforts to the utmost of their ability?"

Luang Pu answered,

"Those who have awakened don't talk of what they've awakened to, because it lies above and beyond all words."


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Re: awakening myth?

Postby bodom » Wed Sep 08, 2010 4:28 pm

Ajaan Dune. :bow:

:anjali:
The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah
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Re: awakening myth?

Postby Cittasanto » Wed Sep 08, 2010 5:25 pm

Image

I have heard that both Ajahn Dtun, & Ajahn Anan both say something along the lines of - it takes one to know one!

I think there is a big difference between talking about the path, and talking about attainments of that path, it would be like a 3d being trying to explain to a 2d being what being a 3d being is like. if that makes sense with all that being :)
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: awakening myth?

Postby Laurens » Wed Sep 08, 2010 5:34 pm

Sceptical scrutiny is important in every aspect of our lives. It's what stops us from believing in bunk. It might be one of the so called hindrances to question whether awakening is real or not, but I think its important to ask such questions.
"For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring."

Carl Sagan
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Re: awakening myth?

Postby beeblebrox » Wed Sep 08, 2010 5:50 pm

Laurens wrote:Sceptical scrutiny is important in every aspect of our lives. It's what stops us from believing in bunk. It might be one of the so called hindrances to question whether awakening is real or not, but I think its important to ask such questions.


That's what dhamma vicaya is for... discrimination of states, one of the factors for awakening. Doubt by itself is an hindrance. Here is its definition (from here):

Dhamma-vicaya is the aspect of mindfulness that categorizes our experience in terms of some model or another. An important aspect of meditation is learning ways to categorize our distractions (the hindrances) as well as positive qualities that we can develop in meditation (the dhyana factors). Dhamma-vicaya is the act of comparing our inner experience to a mental map, so that we can navigate more effectively towards our goal.
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Re: awakening myth?

Postby daniel p » Thu Sep 09, 2010 5:30 am

Sure you can! Of course! why not? Come on, just do it! Keep a stiff upper lip! Take it in stride! What have you got to lose?

If you practice then you at least gain a hobby, but very likely an increase of peace of mind too (ask anyone here). Whether or not the practice goes all the way to the end of suffering, to enlightenment, is only demonstrable to yourself by accomplishing it.

In the beginning you have to be content with small returns on practice. As the benefits become steadier and more pronounced you might then have more confidence in the big promise. If you just force yourself to accept a notion or promise that is totally alien to you, you'll just have more resistance. And then you're even further from accomplishing anything of value.[/quote]

Thanks for the encouragement!
I should point out that I am not experiencing some sort of crisis of faith. I have been practicing regularly for the past couple of years, and I can honestly say I do believe I have accrued at least some benefits. In fact my wife felt that my temperament had improved markedly and decided to attend the same meditation retreat on that basis, with no encouragement from me.

For many years I have studied buddhist teachings (among others), but now I am patient enough to actually try to anylyse my own understanding of the dhamma and this discussion is an attempt to address the intellectual holes that appear. (wait till I start another thread on the whole anatta/rebirth thing)
This may be a painstaking process but some aspects of dhamma are more evident to me than others. I am happy to rely on those teachings which are consistent with my own experience. But I feel it is my duty to proceed with caution regarding other aspects that fall outside my experience.
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Re: awakening myth?

Postby daniel p » Thu Sep 09, 2010 5:38 am

Paññāsikhara wrote:Kia ora, Daniel. Are you from Aotearoa?


yes.Auckland.
No one here from Christchurch?
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Re: awakening myth?

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Sep 09, 2010 10:42 am

daniel p wrote:No one here from Christchurch?

Yes, see: viewtopic.php?f=12&t=5536

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Re: awakening myth?

Postby Reductor » Thu Sep 09, 2010 6:50 pm

daniel p wrote:Thanks for the encouragement!
I should point out that I am not experiencing some sort of crisis of faith.


Well that's a relief. I thought I would have to break out my rhetoric 'skills' (*shudder*). And I don't think anyone wants that! :lol:

... (wait till I start another thread on the whole anatta/rebirth thing)


Nooooooooo......!!!!

:ban: :tongue:

This may be a painstaking process but some aspects of dhamma are more evident to me than others. I am happy to rely on those teachings which are consistent with my own experience. But I feel it is my duty to proceed with caution regarding other aspects that fall outside my experience.


I'm of the opinion that the teachings are first and foremost about our 'experience' of suffering, of being. However, when people say 'my experience' they are usually referring to their views. Don't unwittingly filter the teachings through your pre-existing views.

Of course you already have views to which you automatically appeal, but keep in mind that they are narrow by nature. Don't take it for granted that what you think is right and proper is actually right and proper.
Michael

The thoughts I've expressed in the above post are carefully considered and offered in good faith.

And friendliness towards the world is happiness for him who is forbearing with living beings. -- Ud. 2:1
To his own ruin the fool gains knowledge, for it cleaves his head and destroys his innate goodness. -- Dhp 72

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Re: awakening myth?

Postby christopher::: » Fri Sep 10, 2010 3:57 am

daniel p wrote:
Thanks for the encouragement!
I should point out that I am not experiencing some sort of crisis of faith. I have been practicing regularly for the past couple of years, and I can honestly say I do believe I have accrued at least some benefits. In fact my wife felt that my temperament had improved markedly and decided to attend the same meditation retreat on that basis, with no encouragement from me.

For many years I have studied buddhist teachings (among others), but now I am patient enough to actually try to anylyse my own understanding of the dhamma and this discussion is an attempt to address the intellectual holes that appear. (wait till I start another thread on the whole anatta/rebirth thing)
This may be a painstaking process but some aspects of dhamma are more evident to me than others. I am happy to rely on those teachings which are consistent with my own experience. But I feel it is my duty to proceed with caution regarding other aspects that fall outside my experience.



There are indeed certain teachings which are impossible to proove, others far beyond our experience (for most of us). The beauty of the dharma, imo, is how simple many of Buddha's instructions were. The deeper we go the clearer the "truth" is about certain things, but the bottom line (for many of us) are the RESULTS we experience over time- greater calm, insight, joy, patience, etc.

Sounds like you've already seen this for yourself, thankfully. If not, its doubtful all our yapping would convince you otherwise...

:anjali:
"As Buddhists, we should aim to develop relationships that are not predominated by grasping and clinging. Our relationships should be characterised by the brahmaviharas of metta (loving kindness), mudita (sympathetic joy), karuna (compassion), and upekkha (equanimity)."
~post by Ben, Jul 02, 2009
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