Other conditions today???

Theravāda in the 21st century - modern applications of ancient wisdom
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Re: Other conditions today???

Postby Cittasanto » Sun Jun 10, 2012 7:49 am

Hi Kamran,
certainly on this level there is a difference but I do not see how this changes anything regarding the teachings, as the brain was used in the proffession of certain of the Buddhas disciples, such as doctors and statesmen, I doubt amount of knowledge, or technology changes things here also as we still have the same Dukkha verities and problems, such as getting enough money to support ones family, crime, work problems (although a labourer would also think about their job if they had a problem there, just as an engineer would).
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: Other conditions today???

Postby Cittasanto » Sun Jun 10, 2012 8:12 am

Hi jason c
Question 1 wrote:what are these other conditions?

1. the buddha was alive then.
Question 2 wrote:why & how are they different to causes in the time of the Buddha?

2. now he is dead.
Question 3 wrote:how & why are the teachings disproved, irrelevant, not appropriate due to these new conditions?

3. they are not, but are you sure you are practicing the buddhas teachings?

can anyone be 100% sure, if there is progress in the right direction i.e. less effected be dukkha, then the practice is going in the right direction, even if not 100% spot on.

Question 4 wrote:how is this outside world more materialistic/worse for practice/what ever else you believe it to be, and how does that change things in regard to the teachings & practice?

4. its perfectly imperfect to practice in

how does that change things in regard to the teachings & practice?

Question 5 wrote:how are we different (in relation to the Buddhas teachings & practice) to people back when the teachings took place? and why does this matter?

5. we're not. we can still practice his way

doesn't this answer & that to question 3 render answering the questions pointless?

Question 6b wrote:how & why is it easier to see today than in the Buddha's time? how don't we proliferate, ignore the obvious, fool ourselves less than then?

6b. there is the possibility we could have more free time

that answers the how but the why?
I doubt this matters, as more free time or not does not effect putting the teachings into practice at all times in the day, sure solitude is a great aid to practice and advised by the buddha in a strong way, however, interpersonal interactions are also covered in the Noble eightfold path (sila division mainly although right view, effort and mindfulness also) & clear knowing (see the section of the satipatthana sutta for example) so practice can still be upheld at any time.
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: Other conditions today???

Postby jason c » Sun Jun 10, 2012 11:19 am

hey cittasanto,
1. you become happier. later stream entry will eradicate any doubt.
2. the world is perfect to practice in
3 yes.
metta,
jason

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Re: Other conditions today???

Postby Kamran » Sun Jun 10, 2012 6:30 pm

I agree that there is not a significant difference as far as the practice is concerned. I think it might take a bit more effort to get the mind settled down due to the different types of jobs and distractions in modern societies. In the balance between concentration and insight we may need to work more on concentration.
When this concentration is thus developed, thus well developed by you, then wherever you go, you will go in comfort. Wherever you stand, you will stand in comfort. Wherever you sit, you will sit in comfort. Wherever you lie down, you will lie down in comfort.

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Re: Other conditions today???

Postby Cittasanto » Sun Jun 10, 2012 7:43 pm

Kamran wrote:I agree that there is not a significant difference as far as the practice is concerned. I think it might take a bit more effort to get the mind settled down due to the different types of jobs and distractions in modern societies. In the balance between concentration and insight we may need to work more on concentration.

There are different capabilities, and that is true no matter when.
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: Other conditions today???

Postby ground » Mon Jun 11, 2012 3:02 am

Cittasanto wrote:
ground wrote:
Cittasanto wrote:you are/can not provide any support for your claims, as a result this is winding up very quickly.

It never has been my intention to provide what you call "support" because I know that it is merely a matter of belief. I just wanted to share my view. As someone who has gotten deeply involved in the literal teachings you seem to be greedy to defend your religious view and negate mine which is more balanced and distanced. It is obvious that conditions today are different. It is just that you want to establish exclusive and absolute truth of the teachings you have gotten involved in very deeply. Your intent is quite "natural" for religious believers.


“You can't convince a believer of anything; for their belief is not based on evidence, it's based on a deep seated need to believe”

http://thinkexist.com/quotation/you_can ... 91321.html



Kind regards

you are using belief as though this negates an open mindedness, which is quite frankly silly; and the challenge is to support your views, as what these questions are addressing possibly effects the teachings in a big way.

so unless you have something demonstrable (something science likes) you are simply holding a belief and trying to shirk the burden of proof.


But all you can do is to state your belief as an alternative. You cannot prove the validity of the Buddha's teaching either. In the same way I cannot prove that scientific knwoledge can lead to the "end of dukkha" or - maybe better - to a life without "stress".

As I said it is all about belief, nothing else. You cannot demonstrate, neither can I. You can believe, so can I. it is all about that, has alway about that and will always be about that: belief.
The only difference may be awareness that it is just belief OR clinging to some sort of imagined exclusivity. I say: You may use scientific knowledge or the buddha's teachings. There is no difference and in that there is scientific knowledge today conditions are different today.



Kind regards

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Re: Other conditions today???

Postby Cittasanto » Mon Jun 11, 2012 7:32 am

ground wrote:
Cittasanto wrote:you are using belief as though this negates an open mindedness, which is quite frankly silly; and the challenge is to support your views, as what these questions are addressing possibly effects the teachings in a big way.

so unless you have something demonstrable (something science likes) you are simply holding a belief and trying to shirk the burden of proof.


But all you can do is to state your belief as an alternative. You cannot prove the validity of the Buddha's teaching either. In the same way I cannot prove that scientific knwoledge can lead to the "end of dukkha" or - maybe better - to a life without "stress".

As I said it is all about belief, nothing else. You cannot demonstrate, neither can I. You can believe, so can I. it is all about that, has alway about that and will always be about that: belief.
The only difference may be awareness that it is just belief OR clinging to some sort of imagined exclusivity. I say: You may use scientific knowledge or the buddha's teachings. There is no difference and in that there is scientific knowledge today conditions are different today.


Well what is what is being asked for, and what you are answering are not in relation to the questions. statements without explanations (as asked for within the questions) and a refusal to answer are irrelevant.

like the op question, What are these other conditions... how & why do they make a difference to the actual practice...disprove... the teachings
the mind doesn't change because of scientific knowledge, method, or anything else you have tried to use.

rebirth has never been disproved, and whether someone does or does not believe it is irrelevant, whether it is a useful tool or not is.
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: Other conditions today???

Postby ground » Tue Jun 12, 2012 1:40 am

Cittasanto wrote:
ground wrote:
Cittasanto wrote:you are using belief as though this negates an open mindedness, which is quite frankly silly; and the challenge is to support your views, as what these questions are addressing possibly effects the teachings in a big way.

so unless you have something demonstrable (something science likes) you are simply holding a belief and trying to shirk the burden of proof.


But all you can do is to state your belief as an alternative. You cannot prove the validity of the Buddha's teaching either. In the same way I cannot prove that scientific knwoledge can lead to the "end of dukkha" or - maybe better - to a life without "stress".

As I said it is all about belief, nothing else. You cannot demonstrate, neither can I. You can believe, so can I. it is all about that, has alway about that and will always be about that: belief.
The only difference may be awareness that it is just belief OR clinging to some sort of imagined exclusivity. I say: You may use scientific knowledge or the buddha's teachings. There is no difference and in that there is scientific knowledge today conditions are different today.


Well what is what is being asked for, and what you are answering are not in relation to the questions. statements without explanations (as asked for within the questions) and a refusal to answer are irrelevant..

It is up to you to be satisfied with an answer or not. I have answered already.

I may repeat:

Cittasanto wrote:What are these other conditions...


Scientific Knowledge and information about biology, psychology, religions ....

Cittasanto wrote:how & why do they make a difference to the actual practice...

Because this knowledge and information broadens the view and "naturally" renders the teachings relative.

Cittasanto wrote:disprove... the teachings

As I said already. Not necessarily disprove but help to "see through" it

Cittasanto wrote:the mind doesn't change because of scientific knowledge, method, or anything else you have tried to use.

There is no mind to be found but a brain that functions in a specific way that can be investigated into further.

Cittasanto wrote:rebirth has never been disproved, and whether someone does or does not believe it is irrelevant, whether it is a useful tool or not is.

it cannot be disproved but it cannot be proved either but prove/disprove is completely irrelevant because people believe what they want to believe anyway.

Kind regards

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Re: Other conditions today???

Postby Kamran » Thu Jun 14, 2012 4:15 pm

ground,

There are empirical truths and pragmatic truths.

If a teaching such as rebirth is put into practice and has positive results then it is regarded as a pragmatic truth :)
When this concentration is thus developed, thus well developed by you, then wherever you go, you will go in comfort. Wherever you stand, you will stand in comfort. Wherever you sit, you will sit in comfort. Wherever you lie down, you will lie down in comfort.

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Re: Other conditions today???

Postby ground » Fri Jun 15, 2012 1:13 am

Kamran wrote:ground,

There are empirical truths and pragmatic truths.

If a teaching such as rebirth is put into practice and has positive results then it is regarded as a pragmatic truth :)

"There are"? Where? :smile:

What difference do you imagine between your "pragmatic" and your "empirical"?

Kamran wrote:If a teaching such as rebirth is put into practice and has positive results then it is regarded as a pragmatic truth :)

If one wanted to safeguard one's meaning of the term "truth" one may say the same in regard to every idea that does not contradict one's belief. The term "pragmatic" can be skipped because it does not make a difference in that naming something "truth" is just an expression of will. So calling something "pragmatic truth" appears arbitrary in the context of belief when imagined "positive results" cannot be shown to everyone as evidence to see.

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Re: Other conditions today???

Postby Hanzze » Fri Jun 15, 2012 1:34 am

Pulling away any ground is something Buddha did not teach as it is not possible. The ground will disappear naturally, but it needs to be developed firmly first. Otherwise one would simply close all doors for a long time and spend his existences with sap wood till it breaks. Than he would maximal run around and tell hardwood does not exist.

Buddha did not worry about much, but in regard of sap wood dealer and their ways, he was always very attend. For their conditions last for long times but still conditioned.
Just that! *smile*
...We Buddhists must find the courage to leave our temples and enter the temples of human experience, temples that are filled with suffering. If we listen to Buddha, Christ, or Gandhi, we can do nothing else. The refugee camps, the prisons, the ghettos, and the battlefields will become our temples. We have so much work to do. ... Peace is Possible! Step by Step. - Samtach Preah Maha Ghosananda "Step by Step" http://www.ghosananda.org/bio_book.html

BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Punna Sutta Nate sante baram sokham _()_

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Re: Other conditions today???

Postby Kamran » Fri Jun 15, 2012 3:34 am

Hi ground,

This reminds me of the story where a guy with an arrow shot through him first asks the doctor to explain what type of wood is the arrow made out of, what forest did the tree come from, who created the arrow, etc, before allowing the doctor to just remove the arrow :)

Here's an Empirical Truth:

With breath meditation you can reach "access concentration" and can use this serene state of mind to gain insight and perspective. You can verify it to be true in an empirical manner by trying it yourself.

The teaching on rebirth can't be verified in this manner. However, the purpose of Buddhist teachings is to provide tools people can use to end their suffering. The teaching on Rebirth is just one of the tools people can use.

If its an effective tool in ending suffering, then its a valid teaching from a Buddhist perspective. The goal is to just remove the arrow that is stuck in us, not to explain what the arrow is made from, or who made it :)
When this concentration is thus developed, thus well developed by you, then wherever you go, you will go in comfort. Wherever you stand, you will stand in comfort. Wherever you sit, you will sit in comfort. Wherever you lie down, you will lie down in comfort.

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Re: Other conditions today???

Postby ground » Fri Jun 15, 2012 11:27 pm

Kamran wrote:Hi ground,

This reminds me of the story where a guy with an arrow shot through him first asks the doctor to explain what type of wood is the arrow made out of, what forest did the tree come from, who created the arrow, etc, before allowing the doctor to just remove the arrow :)

Why?

Kamran wrote:Here's an Empirical Truth:

With breath meditation you can reach "access concentration" and can use this serene state of mind to gain insight and perspective. You can verify it to be true in an empirical manner by trying it yourself.

It is an assertion, not a truth. If you believe to have verified it then it may be your belief that it is a truth.

Kamran wrote:If its an effective tool in ending suffering, then its a valid teaching from a Buddhist perspective. The goal is to just remove the arrow that is stuck in us, not to explain what the arrow is made from, or who made it :)

If there is no suffering it is of no use. You first have to believe that everyhere/everything is suffering in order to be able to believe that it is a tool to remove this alleged suffering.

Kind regards

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Re: Other conditions today???

Postby danieLion » Fri Jun 15, 2012 11:38 pm

ground wrote: You first have to believe that everyhere/everything is suffering in order to be able to believe that it is a tool to remove this alleged suffering.

The Buddha never taught that everywhere/everything is suffering.
metta

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Re: Other conditions today???

Postby ground » Fri Jun 15, 2012 11:42 pm

danieLion wrote:
ground wrote: You first have to believe that everyhere/everything is suffering in order to be able to believe that it is a tool to remove this alleged suffering.

The Buddha never taught that everywhere/everything is suffering.
metta


Never mind. But a big deal is made of the idea of suffering, isn't it? :smile:

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Re: Other conditions today???

Postby danieLion » Fri Jun 15, 2012 11:57 pm

ground wrote:
danieLion wrote:
ground wrote: You first have to believe that everyhere/everything is suffering in order to be able to believe that it is a tool to remove this alleged suffering.

The Buddha never taught that everywhere/everything is suffering.
metta


Never mind. But a big deal is made of the idea of suffering, isn't it? :smile:


Thanissaro Bhikkhu wrote:Life Isn't Just Suffering

You've probably heard the rumor that Buddhism is pessimistic, that "Life is suffering" is the Buddha's first noble truth. It's a rumor with good credentials, spread by well-respected academics and meditation teachers alike, but a rumor nonetheless. The real truth about the noble truths is far more interesting. The Buddha taught four truths — not one — about life: There is suffering, there is a cause for suffering, there is an end of suffering, and there is a path of practice that puts an end to suffering. These truths, taken as a whole, are far from pessimistic. They're a practical, problem-solving approach — the way a doctor approaches an illness, or a mechanic a faulty engine. You identify a problem and look for its cause. You then put an end to the problem by eliminating the cause.

What's special about the Buddha's approach is that the problem he attacks is the whole of human suffering, and the solution he offers is something human beings can do for themselves. Just as a doctor with a surefire cure for measles isn't afraid of measles, the Buddha isn't afraid of any aspect of human suffering. And, having experienced a happiness that's totally unconditional, he's not afraid to point out the suffering and stress inherent in places where most of us would rather not see it — in the conditioned pleasures we cling to. He teaches us not to deny that suffering and stress, or to run away from it, but to stand still and face up to it. To examine it carefully. That way — by understanding it — we can ferret out its cause and put an end to it. Totally. How confident can you get?

A fair number of writers have pointed out the basic confidence inherent in the four noble truths, and yet the rumor of Buddhism's pessimism persists. I wonder why. One possible explanation is that, in coming to Buddhism, we sub-consciously expect it to address issues that have a long history in our own culture. By starting out with suffering as his first truth, the Buddha seems to be offering his position on a question with a long history in the West: is the world basically good or bad?

According to Genesis, this was the first question that occurred to God after he had finished his creation: had he done a good job? So he looked at the world and saw that it was good. Ever since then, people in the West have sided with or against God on his answer, but in doing so they have affirmed that the question was worth asking to begin with. When Theravada — the only form of Buddhism to take on Christianity when Europe colonized Asia — was looking for ways to head off what it saw as the missionary menace, Buddhists who had received their education from the missionaries assumed that the question was valid and pressed the first noble truth into service as a refutation of the Christian God: look at how miserable life is, they said, and it's hard to accept God's verdict on his handiwork.

This debating strategy may have scored a few points at the time, and it's easy to find Buddhist apologists who — still living in the colonial past — keep trying to score the same points. The real issue, though, is whether the Buddha intended for his first noble truth to be an answer to God's question in the first place and — more importantly — whether we're getting the most out of the first noble truth if we see it in that light.

It's hard to imagine what you could accomplish by saying that life is suffering. You'd have to spend your time arguing with people who see more than just suffering in life. The Buddha himself says as much in one of his discourses. A brahman named Long-nails (Dighanakha) comes to him and announces that he doesn't approve of anything. This would have been a perfect time for the Buddha, if he had wanted, to chime in with the truth that life is suffering. Instead, he attacks the whole notion of taking a stand on whether life is worthy of approval. There are three possible answers to this question: (1) nothing is worthy of approval, (2) everything is, and (3) some things are and some things aren't. If you take any of these three positions, you end up arguing with the people who take either of the other two positions. And where does that get you?
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... e.html#lif
my emphases

metta

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Re: Other conditions today???

Postby ground » Sat Jun 16, 2012 12:01 am

Never mind ;)

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Re: Other conditions today???

Postby Cittasanto » Sat Jun 16, 2012 7:11 am

:focus:
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: Other conditions today???

Postby Hanzze » Sat Jun 16, 2012 7:12 am

Are there already other conditions for that today?
Just that! *smile*
...We Buddhists must find the courage to leave our temples and enter the temples of human experience, temples that are filled with suffering. If we listen to Buddha, Christ, or Gandhi, we can do nothing else. The refugee camps, the prisons, the ghettos, and the battlefields will become our temples. We have so much work to do. ... Peace is Possible! Step by Step. - Samtach Preah Maha Ghosananda "Step by Step" http://www.ghosananda.org/bio_book.html

BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Punna Sutta Nate sante baram sokham _()_

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Re: Other conditions today???

Postby Cittasanto » Sat Jun 16, 2012 11:22 am

As no other conditions have been shown which would adversely affect the Buddhas Teachings as existing, can this thread be closed now?
(Edited)
Last edited by Cittasanto on Sat Jun 16, 2012 12:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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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