We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism

Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Dec 03, 2012 4:27 am

Greetings,

The suttas are cool.

8-)

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby alan » Mon Dec 03, 2012 4:29 am

Damn straight they are Retro!
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby Spiny Norman » Mon Dec 03, 2012 9:16 am

alan wrote:So we all agree that reading the suttas is important? Great. And we all agree that the suttas are the basis of all teachings. And I won't hear any disagreements, right?


Yes, the suttas are the best thing since sliced bread.
:woohoo:
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby daverupa » Mon Dec 03, 2012 12:19 pm

:candle: :buddha1: [D][M][_S_][_A_][__K__] :buddha1: :candle:
    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.
- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby cbonanno » Mon Dec 03, 2012 4:25 pm

alan wrote:I'm astonished to see any argument otherwise. Where would we be without them?
You don't have to revere them, but if you are a Buddhist, everything you know, or think you know, comes from the original teachings. We can argue about points, we can disagree about how best to practice. But we all owe a debt of gratitude to the Buddha for teaching. Where best to find that? In the suttas, of course. They are the best representation of his teachings, and you should read them.


While we know the Dhamma because of the suttas, we do not need the suttas to know the Dhamma.

The Suttas are like a raft, yes? :) Just know that you are using them to cross the stream rather than be pulled by its currents.
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby santa100 » Mon Dec 03, 2012 5:17 pm

:candle: :buddha1: [D][M][..S..][1..11][K] :buddha1: :candle:
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Dec 03, 2012 5:32 pm

santa100 wrote::candle: :buddha1: [D][M][..S..][1..11][K] :buddha1: :candle:
?
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby santa100 » Mon Dec 03, 2012 5:58 pm

Oh sorry, guess my decoding of Dave's message makes it worse... :smile: They're the 5 Great Books: Digha, Majjhima, etc..
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby danieLion » Tue Dec 04, 2012 1:25 am

alan wrote:And we all agree that the suttas are the basis of all teachings. And I won't hear any disagreements, right?
No. The Buddha is the basis of his teachings. He's on record (in the Vinaya) saying he didn't want his teachings written down. Add this to the message of the Kalama Sutta and you have a powerful reason not to invest absolute faith in the suttas, but rather to read them critically.
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby polarbuddha101 » Tue Dec 04, 2012 1:33 am

danieLion wrote:
alan wrote:And we all agree that the suttas are the basis of all teachings. And I won't hear any disagreements, right?
No. The Buddha is the basis of his teachings. He's on record (in the Vinaya) saying he didn't want his teachings written down. Add this to the message of the Kalama Sutta and you have a powerful reason not to invest absolute faith in the suttas, but rather to read them critically.


Well, the Buddha's dead, so if you would kindly show me the writing where the Buddha says he doesn't want his teachings written down I would appreciate it.
"I don't envision a single thing that, when developed & cultivated, leads to such great benefit as the mind. The mind, when developed & cultivated, leads to great benefit."

"I don't envision a single thing that, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about such suffering & stress as the mind. The mind, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about suffering & stress."
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby danieLion » Tue Dec 04, 2012 1:44 am

polarbuddha101 wrote:
danieLion wrote:
alan wrote:And we all agree that the suttas are the basis of all teachings. And I won't hear any disagreements, right?
No. The Buddha is the basis of his teachings. He's on record (in the Vinaya) saying he didn't want his teachings written down. Add this to the message of the Kalama Sutta and you have a powerful reason not to invest absolute faith in the suttas, but rather to read them critically.


Well, the Buddha's dead, so if you would kindly show me the writing where the Buddha says he doesn't want his teachings written down I would appreciate it.

Vinayapitaka Cullavagga V, 33
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby cbonanno » Tue Dec 04, 2012 2:04 am

danieLion wrote:
Vinayapitaka Cullavagga V, 33


I will read that sutta verse critically. :)

Do you have the text for that, or a link?
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby daverupa » Tue Dec 04, 2012 2:23 am



You must be referring to the idea those monks had of having the teachings formally put into Sanskrit, rather than local dialects. The Buddha ruled as follows:

You are not, O Bhikkhus, to put the word of the Buddhas into (Sanskrit) verse. Whosoever does so, shall be guilty of a dukkata. I allow you, O Bhikkhus, to learn the word of the Buddhas each in his own dialect.
    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.
- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby alan » Tue Dec 04, 2012 3:13 am

Perhaps this is just my prejudice, but I'm of the opinion that a basic understanding of the suttas is a necessity for anyone who is serious about the path.
Ignoring them, or, even worse, assuming you know better, is just a sign of ignorance.
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby danieLion » Tue Dec 04, 2012 7:22 am

alan wrote:Perhaps this is just my prejudice, but I'm of the opinion that a basic understanding of the suttas is a necessity for anyone who is serious about the path.
Ignoring them, or, even worse, assuming you know better, is just a sign of ignorance.


Did you have someone specific in mind, and/or something particular he/she/they did, said or believe?

I agree that a basic understanding of the suttas is necessary for anyone serious about the path. But such and understanding is impossible without a basic agreement as to which parts are authentic and which parts are not.
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby tiltbillings » Tue Dec 04, 2012 7:27 am

danieLion wrote: But such and understanding is impossible without a basic agreement as to which parts are authentic and which parts are not.
That is a dense thicket to traverse.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby Nyana » Tue Dec 04, 2012 7:49 am

danieLion wrote:I agree that a basic understanding of the suttas is necessary for anyone serious about the path. But such and understanding is impossible without a basic agreement as to which parts are authentic and which parts are not.

The four main Nikāyas and the sutta sections of the fifth Nikāya display a remarkable degree of internal consistency. I've yet to see an argument regarding inauthenticity that amounts to anything significant. Most such claims are rooted in the biases of the author's own worldview or doctrinal assumptions.

The general advice offered in the suttas is to (i) maintain appropriate ethical conduct, (ii) go to a secluded place to reflect of the teachings and calm the mind, (iii) develop discernment into impermanence, etc., in order to further induce dispassion and letting go of attachments.

The teachings and meditation methods are all means to an end -- liberation from passion, aggression, and delusion. The apparent diversity of methods and inclusiveness of practices illustrated in the Pāli Nikāyas is oriented towards this goal, either directly or indirectly. Methods and practices are provisional, and as long as the application of the practice supports the lessening and eventual elimination of passion, aggression, and delusion, it accords with the Buddha's dhamma.
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby tiltbillings » Tue Dec 04, 2012 8:01 am

Ñāṇa wrote:
danieLion wrote:I agree that a basic understanding of the suttas is necessary for anyone serious about the path. But such and understanding is impossible without a basic agreement as to which parts are authentic and which parts are not.

The four main Nikāyas and the sutta sections of the fifth Nikāya display a remarkable degree of internal consistency. I've yet to see an argument regarding inauthenticity that amounts to anything significant. Most such claims are rooted in the biases of the author's own worldview.
I can agree with that. I wonder, however, if there is a more important question of what do we need to take as being literally true and what do we take as mythic. And here I use "mythic" or mythological as referring to a way of relating truths via stories and cosmologies that need not be seen as being literally true to make a valid point.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby Mr Man » Tue Dec 04, 2012 8:08 am

tiltbillings wrote:what do we need to take as being literally true and what do we take as mythic.

I think that is something that we work with over time. There does not have to be a fixed collective starting position.
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Re: We know about the Dhamma because of the suttas.

Postby tiltbillings » Tue Dec 04, 2012 8:14 am

Mr Man wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:what do we need to take as being literally true and what do we take as mythic.

I think that is something that we work with over time. There does not have to be a fixed collective starting position.
Yes.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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