A virtuous monk, Kotthita my friend, should attend in an appropriate way to the five clinging-aggregates as inconstant, stressful, a disease, a cancer, an arrow, painful, an affliction, alien, a dissolution, an emptiness, not-self. Which five? Form as a clinging-aggregate, feeling... perception... fabrications... consciousness as a clinging-aggregate.[/quote)
In the same way, a monk sees, observes, & appropriately examines any fabrications that are past, future, or present; internal or external; blatant or subtle; common or sublime; far or near. To him — seeing them, observing them, & appropriately examining them — they would appear empty, void, without substance: for what substance would there be in fabrications?
Now the Buddha teaches the cessation suffering- it would be foolish to think of a cessation of suffering in a ' to be seen here & now, timeless, inviting verification' manner without seeing the actual cessation
of the aggregates. But of course, if a putajjana doesn't see the suffering inherent in the aggregates (as above), it would be a calamity a disaster to have the aggregates cease. But the Ariya knows that "This is peace, this is exquisite — the resolution of all fabrications, the relinquishment of all acquisitions, the ending of craving; dispassion; cessation; Nibbana."
— AN 3.32
Which neatly brings us to the second assumption that the cessation of craving does not mean cessation of arising and passing away (ie all experience). With the total
cessation of craving, aversion and delusion (and not partial) there is
cessation of all experience/aggregates. There is no way to prove this except to say that 1) otherwise there would be no need for 'verification by oneself' otherwise (it would be immediately logical) and no need for an unfabricated nibbana - a fabricated one (perhaps like the Mahayanists) will do just fine. I don't intend to convince anyone- you are welcome to take it or leave it. But I will continue to state it because perhaps those people with 'little dust in their eyes' will make sense of it. To summarise, the ending of craving, aversion and delusion, if done completely, includes the cessation of experience ala paticcanirodha, which the stream entrant experiences. Just because no other well known dhamma celebrity explains it in this way does not mean it is suspect or wrong.
As for Starter's question- there is some 'overcoming of doubt' when not-self is realised- indeed that particular purification is called 'The purification of overcoming doubt' (kankhavitarana visuddhi).
But the doubt is not about self/no-self, but rather, whether the path/the Buddha delivers what it/he promises-the total cessation of suffering. Now as in Theravadidilianas quote above the vipassana yogi sees the suffering inherent in that which arises and passes away. S/he is happy to be able to put down the aggregates even for a moment - that unfabricated 'moment'- and sees that this is the TOTAL cessation of suffering. The Buddha said that what arises is suffering. With this s/he gets to see suffering NOT arise. Then s/he knows beyond a shadow of doubt that the path works- and becomes 'independent of others with regards to the dhamma'- another description of the stream entrant.
There are many other non-experiential events - sleep, anaesthesia, falling unconscious etc. Why do they not constitute nibbana then? Well, that perhaps is the whole point- those are conditioned states. Sleep is an escape from tiredness, anaesthesia is an escape from the pain of surgery, nibbana is an escape (nissarana) from samsara or in other words the aggregates (there is nothing other than this). Nibbana is of value, if the moment to moment suffering of samsara is seen through vipassana practice. It is of value, when it is seen that the cessation of craving, aversion and delusion leads to the cessation of suffering AND the samsaric journey (rebirth moment by moment) comes to an end EVEN NOW- it is verifiable. Otherwise we have a situation where samsara continues minus craving, aversion and delusion and there isn't even the slightest indication of stopping samsara (this of course not a problem for those who don't have the mundane right view that rebirth exists). As for arahaths perceiving, the one way I can discern the dhamma is to say that the body is old kamma, nothing new will arise in the future- which is an important point. The death of an arahath has a special name/status simply because it marks the ending even the suffering of having a body and mind. It is a complete and wonderful solution, that the Buddha discovered!
Why don't you approve of birth?
One who is born
enjoys sensual pleasures.
Who on earth
ever persuaded you:
'Nun, don't approve of birth'?
For one who is born
One who is born
It's a binding, a flogging, a torment.
That's why one shouldn't approve
The Awakened One taught me the Dhamma
— the overcoming of birth —
for the abandoning of all pain,
he established me in
But beings who have come to form
& those with a share in the formless,
if they don't discern cessation,
return to becoming-again.
Then Mara the Evil One — sad & dejected at realizing, "Cala the nun knows me" — vanished right there.