The Burden

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The Burden

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Jan 03, 2013 4:27 am

Moderator note: The following msgs were pulled from this thread: viewtopic.php?f=16&t=15952 The reason for doing so is that this topic has the potential for ballooning considerably and potentially derailing its parent thread. Also, this topic is quite interesting in its own right deserves to have it own thread.

(Also, do not pay attention to the time stamp.)
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: The Burden

Postby Alex123 » Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:02 pm

Dear DF,

dhamma follower wrote:It should be formulated differently: it is the underlying idea of a self who can make certain dhammas to arise at certain time that motivates a formal practice.


Buddha teaches anatta. An+Atta.
An= not. It doesn't mean "no".
Natthi = no.
So no atta would be natthatta rather than anatta.

Buddha didn't reject puggalo.

Furthermore, what is negated is Atta/Atman in the context of 5th century BC India. I wonder if what they considered to be Atman is anything close to what soulless materialists, or secular people of today call "self".

I think that atman is more like homunculus in western philosophy.
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Re: The Burden

Postby beeblebrox » Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:09 pm

Alex123 wrote:Furthermore, what is negated is Atta/Atman in the context of 5th century BC India. I wonder if what the considered to be Atman is anything close to what soulless materialists, or secular people of today call self.


Yes, I think in the context of Buddhism, "self" is more properly seen as an agent that is permanent and unchanging. I seem to vaguely recall that in Thai, anatta is translated into something like a lack of control. Maybe that is where the confusion arise in this debate?

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Re: The Burden

Postby Alex123 » Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:12 pm

Hello Beeblebrox,

beeblebrox wrote:
Alex123 wrote:Furthermore, what is negated is Atta/Atman in the context of 5th century BC India. I wonder if what the considered to be Atman is anything close to what soulless materialists, or secular people of today call self.


Yes, I think in the context of Buddhism, "self" is more properly seen as an agent that is permanent and unchanging.


And who here truly believes in a permanent and unchanging agent? How many people down the street believe in that (when precisely asked)? None.
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Re: The Burden

Postby beeblebrox » Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:19 pm

Alex123 wrote:Hello Beeblebrox,

beeblebrox wrote:
Alex123 wrote:Furthermore, what is negated is Atta/Atman in the context of 5th century BC India. I wonder if what the considered to be Atman is anything close to what soulless materialists, or secular people of today call self.


Yes, I think in the context of Buddhism, "self" is more properly seen as an agent that is permanent and unchanging.


And who here truly believes in a permanent and unchanging agent? How many people down the street believe in that (when precisely asked)? None.


Hi Alex,

I think you're right. I've actually contemplated on this point myself several times, and one explanation that popped in my mind (though might be implausible) was that the extent of the Buddha's liberation hasn't been fully comprehended. By the practitioners, that is.

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Re: The Burden

Postby Mr Man » Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:35 pm

Alex123 wrote:Dear DF,

dhamma follower wrote:It should be formulated differently: it is the underlying idea of a self who can make certain dhammas to arise at certain time that motivates a formal practice.


Buddha teaches anatta. An+Atta.
An= not. It doesn't mean "no".
Natthi = no.
So no atta would be natthatta rather than anatta.

Buddha didn't reject puggalo.

Furthermore, what is negated is Atta/Atman in the context of 5th century BC India. I wonder if what they considered to be Atman is anything close to what soulless materialists, or secular people of today call "self".

I think that atman is more like homunculus in western philosophy.


Hi Alex123
I think you may be on rather dodgy ground here.
Last edited by Mr Man on Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Burden

Postby Mr Man » Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:38 pm

Alex123 wrote:
And who here truly believes in a permanent and unchanging agent? How many people down the street believe in that (when precisely asked)? None.


That's because our sense of self is nebulous and unstable.
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Re: The Burden

Postby Alex123 » Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:53 pm

Mr Man wrote:
Alex123 wrote:
And who here truly believes in a permanent and unchanging agent? How many people down the street believe in that (when precisely asked)? None.


That's because our sense of self is nebulous and unstable.



Maybe Atman (in the context of 5th BC India) means something more than a mere empiric self.


Chariot (or car), as emergent property of its parts - does exist.
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Re: The Burden

Postby Mr Man » Wed Jan 30, 2013 4:19 pm

Alex123 wrote:
Mr Man wrote:
Alex123 wrote:
And who here truly believes in a permanent and unchanging agent? How many people down the street believe in that (when precisely asked)? None.


That's because our sense of self is nebulous and unstable.



Maybe Atman (in the context of 5th BC India) means something more than a mere empiric self.


Chariot (or car), as emergent property of its parts - does exist.


I don't know exactly what atman refered to in 5th BC India but I'm sure that the sense of "I", "me", "my", "mine" was much the same then as it is today and was a source of suffering then as it is now.

I'm not going to argue the existence of a car but it's existence is conditional and dependent.
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Re: The Burden

Postby Alex123 » Wed Jan 30, 2013 4:25 pm

Mr Man wrote:I don't know exactly what atman refered to in 5th BC India but I'm sure that the sense of "I", "me", "my", "mine" was much the same then as it is today and was a source of suffering then as it is now.

I'm not going to argue the existence of a car but it's existence is conditional and dependent.


What is the difference between Atta and Puggalo?

The Buddha disproved Atta by pointing to the fact that 5 aggregates are inconstant and unsatisfactory. This wouldn't even refute the wrong idea of a Christian idea of a soul (that changes and can suffer), much less and empiric person.

    "And which is the carrier of the burden? 'The person,' it should be said. This venerable one with such a name, such a clan-name.SN22.22
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Re: The Burden

Postby Mr Man » Wed Jan 30, 2013 4:53 pm

Alex123 wrote:
Mr Man wrote:I don't know exactly what atman refered to in 5th BC India but I'm sure that the sense of "I", "me", "my", "mine" was much the same then as it is today and was a source of suffering then as it is now.

I'm not going to argue the existence of a car but it's existence is conditional and dependent.


What is the difference between Atta and Puggalo?

The Buddha disproved Atta by pointing to the fact that 5 aggregates are inconstant and unsatisfactory. This wouldn't even refute the wrong idea of a Christian idea of a soul (that changes and can suffer), much less and empiric person.

    "And which is the carrier of the burden? 'The person,' it should be said. This venerable one with such a name, such a clan-name.SN22.22


Hi Alex123, I'm not sure what the difference between Atta and Puggalo is as I do not understand Pali. Also the conversation is also possibly taking me out of my intellectual depth and taking the thread off topic but I would be interested on what others make of this.
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Re: The Burden

Postby tiltbillings » Wed Jan 30, 2013 4:55 pm

Alex123 wrote:
Mr Man wrote:I don't know exactly what atman refered to in 5th BC India but I'm sure that the sense of "I", "me", "my", "mine" was much the same then as it is today and was a source of suffering then as it is now.

I'm not going to argue the existence of a car but it's existence is conditional and dependent.


What is the difference between Atta and Puggalo?

The Buddha disproved Atta by pointing to the fact that 5 aggregates are inconstant and unsatisfactory. This wouldn't even refute the wrong idea of a Christian idea of a soul (that changes and can suffer), much less and empiric person.

    "And which is the carrier of the burden? 'The person,' it should be said. This venerable one with such a name, such a clan-name.SN22.22
That is really an interesting and useful sutta. It be well worth moving this sub-discussion to its own thread. Do you two having objections?
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: The Burden

Postby Alex123 » Wed Jan 30, 2013 5:02 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
Alex123 wrote:
Mr Man wrote:I don't know exactly what atman refered to in 5th BC India but I'm sure that the sense of "I", "me", "my", "mine" was much the same then as it is today and was a source of suffering then as it is now.

I'm not going to argue the existence of a car but it's existence is conditional and dependent.


What is the difference between Atta and Puggalo?

The Buddha disproved Atta by pointing to the fact that 5 aggregates are inconstant and unsatisfactory. This wouldn't even refute the wrong idea of a Christian idea of a soul (that changes and can suffer), much less and empiric person.

    "And which is the carrier of the burden? 'The person,' it should be said. This venerable one with such a name, such a clan-name.SN22.22
That is really an interesting and useful sutta. It be well worth moving this sub-discussion to its own thread. Do you two having objections?


No problem. You can move it if you want.

While Buddha seems to reject Atta, He did not reject a person that does so and so. This makes argument about "nothing can be be done because there is no person, only dhammas" to be problematic. I think that is possible to analyze the world analytically AND synthetically.
Last edited by Alex123 on Wed Jan 30, 2013 5:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Burden

Postby Mr Man » Wed Jan 30, 2013 5:03 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
Alex123 wrote:
Mr Man wrote:I don't know exactly what atman refered to in 5th BC India but I'm sure that the sense of "I", "me", "my", "mine" was much the same then as it is today and was a source of suffering then as it is now.

I'm not going to argue the existence of a car but it's existence is conditional and dependent.


What is the difference between Atta and Puggalo?

The Buddha disproved Atta by pointing to the fact that 5 aggregates are inconstant and unsatisfactory. This wouldn't even refute the wrong idea of a Christian idea of a soul (that changes and can suffer), much less and empiric person.

    "And which is the carrier of the burden? 'The person,' it should be said. This venerable one with such a name, such a clan-name.SN22.22
That is really an interesting and useful sutta. It be well worth moving this sub-discussion to its own thread. Do you two having objections?


Not me. I'm also interested in Alex123's comment at Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:02 pm
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Re: The Burden

Postby Alex123 » Wed Jan 30, 2013 5:49 pm

Basically what I am talking about here is that the argument "there is no person,... thus who can develop wisdom or sati?" seem to be shaky. Saying that 5 aggregates are not Atta, is NOT saying that there is no person that is conditioned, anicca, dukkha, and anatta that practices and develops wisdom or sati.
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Re: The Burden

Postby beeblebrox » Wed Jan 30, 2013 5:56 pm

Alex123 wrote:Basically what I am talking about here is that the argument "there is no person,... thus who can practice?" seem to be shaky. Saying that 5 aggregates are not Atta, is NOT saying that there is no person that is conditioned, anicca, dukkha, and anatta that practices.


Again, I wonder if the problem arose from reading anatta as "no control." Is that actually the Thai translation of the term? I haven't verified this for myself.

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Re: The Burden

Postby Alex123 » Wed Jan 30, 2013 5:57 pm

beeblebrox wrote:
Alex123 wrote:Basically what I am talking about here is that the argument "there is no person,... thus who can practice?" seem to be shaky. Saying that 5 aggregates are not Atta, is NOT saying that there is no person that is conditioned, anicca, dukkha, and anatta that practices.


Again, I wonder if the problem arose from reading anatta as "no control." Is that actually the Thai translation of the term? I haven't verified this for myself.
:anjali:


I wonder how modern Thai interpretation of pali word Anatta from Hindu context relates to what the Buddha meant in 5th BC India.
Last edited by Alex123 on Wed Jan 30, 2013 5:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Burden

Postby daverupa » Wed Jan 30, 2013 5:57 pm

The Buddha didn't deny that people (puggala) were different from each other, which is individuality. That one is not this one - we conventionally mark this by such and such a name, such and such a clan, etc.

When an individual appropriates the aggregates, this craving is the taking up of the burden, and this is carried by that individual, who then has sakkayaditthi.

It seems clear...
    "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: The Burden

Postby beeblebrox » Wed Jan 30, 2013 6:01 pm

Alex123 wrote:
beeblebrox wrote:
Alex123 wrote:Basically what I am talking about here is that the argument "there is no person,... thus who can practice?" seem to be shaky. Saying that 5 aggregates are not Atta, is NOT saying that there is no person that is conditioned, anicca, dukkha, and anatta that practices.


Again, I wonder if the problem arose from reading anatta as "no control." Is that actually the Thai translation of the term? I haven't verified this for myself.


I wonder how modern Thai interpretation of pali word Anatta from Hindu context relates to what the Buddha meant in 5th BC India.


Hi Alex,

I wasn't trying to suggest that there was any relevance... just wondering about where the confusion that seemed to be in the other thread came from. It can happen if two parties have two different readings of the same term, and they end up talking past each other.

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Re: The Burden

Postby beeblebrox » Wed Jan 30, 2013 6:04 pm

daverupa wrote:The Buddha didn't deny that people (puggala) were different from each other, which is individuality. That one is not this one - we conventionally mark this by such and such a name, such and such a clan, etc.

When an individual appropriates the aggregates, this craving is the taking up of the burden, and this is carried by that individual, who then has sakkayaditthi.

It seems clear...


Hi Dave,

"Seems" seem to be the key word here.

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