The causes for wisdom

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
dhamma follower
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby dhamma follower » Tue Feb 19, 2013 12:46 pm

Dear Mr Man,

Why can't you enumerate here?


Because talking about conditions such as having time or plane tickets don't accurately describe conditionality. I would prefer to talk about conditionality in terms of elements which condition seeing, hearing etc...or wholesome and unwholesome accumulations, which better explain the anattaness of all phenomena. There are too many of them and when we really break them down, there will be less the idea of someone doing something.

Btw, I didn't intend to make my posts to imply that someone is better than another. If my posts have given you or anyone here that impression, please pardon me. I only try to express my understanding of the Dhamma in ways which might be different from many's, and in doing so, it might sound to be arrogant.

In the end, it is the Dhammic points that I would like to address only.

Brgds,
D.F

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kirk5a
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby kirk5a » Tue Feb 19, 2013 2:07 pm

dhamma follower wrote:Cetana (volition), or chanda (wish-to-do) are not factors of the Path.

dhamma follower wrote:You have quoted many of the Buddha's words exhorting people to be steadfast in their quest for deliverance. However, when the Buddha said things like this, IMO, it doesn't mean that now it is volition and effort rather than understanding which lead the path. His words are like reminder which condition a sense of urgency, which can condition other moments of sati-sampajana.

These are the instructions we have. Your arguments to the contrary, are just that. Contrary.
"And what, monks, is right effort? (i) There is the case where a monk generates desire, endeavors, activates persistence, upholds & exerts his intent for the sake of the non-arising of evil, unskillful qualities that have not yet arisen. (ii) He generates desire, endeavors, activates persistence, upholds & exerts his intent for the sake of the abandonment of evil, unskillful qualities that have arisen. (iii) He generates desire, endeavors, activates persistence, upholds & exerts his intent for the sake of the arising of skillful qualities that have not yet arisen. (iv) He generates desire, endeavors, activates persistence, upholds & exerts his intent for the maintenance, non-confusion, increase, plenitude, development, & culmination of skillful qualities that have arisen: This, monks, is called right effort.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230

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Mr Man
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Mr Man » Tue Feb 19, 2013 3:00 pm

dhamma follower wrote:


In the end, it is the Dhammic points that I would like to address only.



dhamma follower, it's all Dhammic. There is no off switch.

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tiltbillings
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Tue Feb 19, 2013 7:32 pm

dhamma follower wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
dhamma follower wrote: . . . it is the panna cetasika it self which is cultivated gradually by its own conditions . . .
The logic of what you are presenting here is that the only way one can become awakened is by first being awakened, and there is not anything one can do about it.

Fortunately, that is not what the Buddha what the taught.


Dear Tilt,

The logic here is that without the Buddha, no enlightenment possible. Hearing the Dhamma he taught followed by proper understanding, again and again, that is how the Path is cultivated.
Only partly true. What you are missing, which seriously undermines your position, is that the Buddha outlined a way of putting into practice what he taught. It is not just a matter of repeatedly hearing the Dhamma; rather, it was and is, as been clearly and repeatedly shown using the suttas, a matter of putting into practice, by choice, what the Buddha taught.

As we know, what is called a person is only rupa, citta and cetasika. Only panna can actually be said to perform the function of "cultivating the path". Whenever panna arises, other wholesome factor such as right concentration, right effort, right thinking arise too.
Again, you illustrate the passive path, which is not what the Buddha taught and which essentially argues the nonsensical position the only way you can become awakened is by being awakened and there is not a thing one can choose to do that will facilitate that awakening.

Cetana (volition), or chanda (wish-to-do) are not factors of the Path. Whether they are wholesome or unwholesome depends on other accompanied mental factors. Similarly, concentration can bi right or wrong, depending on other cetasikas.
The suttas point out a very different point of view: A. VI 63: Volition [cetanaa; intention, volition, choice], Monks, is what I call kamma [action], and SN I, 38: This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.

So when you maintain that there can be a path out of suffering which should be cultivated, I totally agree.
Actually, you don't agree. You have just argued, contrary to the suttas, that there is no action/choice, kamma, involved in ones practice.

Cetana can not condition sati-sampajana to arise, as we have agreed.
We have not agreed. What I stated is that by one's actions one can cultivate the conditions for the arising of sati-sampajañña

And right understanding at the beginning is intellectual, it can later condition the moment of direct understanding when it becomes firm and powerful enough.
However, the Buddha taught more than just an intellectual right understanding. He taught a way of putting that right understanding into practice. He certainly did not teach the incredibly passive -- do nothing -- approach you are advocating.

When you listen to the Dhamma and have right understanding of how all dhammas are beyond control, it can give rise to many moments of wholesomeness.
The problem is that, by making dhammas beyond our control, you are reifying dhammas, giving them attabhava. The point of the Buddha's path of practice is that dhammas can be deliberately conditioned by our choices and understandings, which is why the Buddha taught pariyatti/learning and patipatti/practice -- the Eightfold Path of learning the Dhamma, of meditation and of sila as active practices, not just a passive listening.

The emphasis on this impossibility to do something about it might appear to be a passive stance, but actually passive or active do not really apply, because there's no one to be passive or active about the Path, only understanding can make it grow.
The problem is that for you, as has been clearly shown by using the Buddha Word that your position is, thankfully, simply wrong.
    >> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<<
    -- Proverbs 26:12

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tiltbillings
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Tue Feb 19, 2013 7:45 pm

dhamma follower wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
    This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

Fortunately the Buddha does not agree with your passive approach to awakening:

[list]Dhammapada: 23. The wise ones, ever meditative and steadfastly persevering, alone experience Nibbana, the incomparable freedom from bondage.



You have quoted many of the Buddha's words exhorting people to be steadfast in their quest for deliverance.
It is far more than being steadfast in what the Buddha was saying. He was clearly pointing to our actions, our choices, as being of significance in our putting his teachings into practice.

However, when the Buddha said things like this, IMO, it doesn't mean that now it is volition and effort rather than understanding which lead the path.
You opinion simply ignores what the Buddha clearly said: This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38. Understanding is grounded in our actions. Our actions/kamma express and cultivate our understanding.

His words are like reminder which condition a sense of urgency, which can condition other moments of sati-sampajana.
Why do we need a sense of urgency if there is, according to you, nothing we can actually do to actualize the Buddha's teachings?

All his teachings must be in conformity with each other.
Following your point of view, there is no conformity in the Buddha's teachings.
    >> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<<
    -- Proverbs 26:12

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tiltbillings
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Mar 01, 2013 4:23 pm

bump
    >> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<<
    -- Proverbs 26:12

pulga
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby pulga » Fri Mar 01, 2013 8:37 pm

dhamma follower wrote:Naturally it is not an activity. Manasikara is a cetasika which arises with all citta, it is usually translated as attention, consideration...It is yoniso manasikara when it accompanies kusala citta, and in the case of vipassana bhavana, it is accompanied by panna. Because it is yoniso, it is free from taints, at the moment it arises.


This accords -- more or less -- with the traditional interpretation, cf. the MA to Sabbásavasutta where yoniso manasikara is identified with sotapattimagga, or the SA to Vipassísutta where it is coupled with an understanding, a penetration into the links of paticcasamuppáda.

I personally think that the Suttas themselves makes this apparent, but it is worth noting regarding yoniso manasikara that Ven. Bodhi finds the traditional interpretation "unsatisfactory" and in his footnote to the Vipassísutta (CDB 729) offers his own understanding of the term, placing yoniso manasikara before paññá and thus at the level of the puthujjana -- which is puzzling given that throughout the Suttas yoniso manasikara is attributed to the ariyasávaka, if not overtly, at least implicitly.

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tiltbillings
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Mar 01, 2013 9:16 pm

pulga wrote: . . . it is worth noting regarding yoniso manasikara that Ven. Bodhi finds the traditional interpretation "unsatisfactory" and in his footnote to the Vipassísutta (CDB 729) offers his own understanding of the term, placing yoniso manasikara before paññá and thus at the level of the puthujjana -- which is puzzling given that throughout the Suttas yoniso manasikara is attributed to the ariyasávaka, if not overtly, at least implicitly.
It should not be puzzling at all. With out the cultivation of yoniso manasikara how do you think paññá would arise?
    >> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<<
    -- Proverbs 26:12

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daverupa
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby daverupa » Fri Mar 01, 2013 9:18 pm

pulga wrote:throughout the Suttas yoniso manasikara is attributed to the ariyasávaka, if not overtly, at least implicitly.


Hmm... yet the conditions for right view are (1) the voice of another and (2) yoniso manasikara, neh? So how can a puthujjana become a sekha if the requirement to do so is to already be one?
    "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]

pulga
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby pulga » Fri Mar 01, 2013 9:51 pm

daverupa wrote:Hmm... yet the conditions for right view are (1) the voice of another and (2) yoniso manasikara, neh? So how can a puthujjana become a sekha if the requirement to do so is to already be one?


I imagine it must be something like one of those pictures that the Gestaltists like to show us, only far, far more subtle and profound. If we don't look at it just right, attend to it properly, we don't see what is represented. But either we see it or we don't. One might brood over a misshapen blob for a lifetime, not giving it "proper attention", but once one does the picture appears.

In any case, this seems to be how the tradition interprets the term: and I think the Suttas support the spirit of that interpretation.

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tiltbillings
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Mar 01, 2013 11:04 pm

. . . in his footnote to the Vipassísutta (CDB 729) offers his own understanding of the term, placing yoniso manasikara before paññá and thus at the level of the puthujjana -- which is puzzling given that throughout the Suttas yoniso manasikara is attributed to the ariyasávaka, if not overtly, at least implicitly.
Ven Bodhi is quite correct in this.

AN I 4; NDB 91: For one who attends carefully [yoniso manasikara] to the mark of the unattractive, unarisen sensual desire does not arise and arisen sensual desire is abandoned.

AN I 13; NDB 100: Bhikkhus, I do not see even a single thing that so causes unarisen qualities to arise and arisen unwholesome qualities to decline as careful attention [yoniso manasikara].

AN I 15; NDB 102: For one who attends carefully [yoniso manasikara], unarisen factors of enlightenment arise and arisen factors of enlightenment reach fulfillment by development.

AN I 31; NDB 117: For one of careful attention, unarisen right view arises and arisen right view increases.

SN I 105; CDB 197: You to, bhikkhus, by careful attention, by careful right striving, must arrive at unsurpassed liberation, must realize unsurpassed liberation.

SN II 10; CDB 537 [here we clearly see in the whole of this discourse CDB 536-540 that careful attention precedes wisdom]: Then, bhikkhus, through careful attention, there took place in me a breakthrough by wisdom.
    >> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<<
    -- Proverbs 26:12

pulga
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby pulga » Fri Mar 01, 2013 11:40 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
AN I 4; NDB 91: For one who attends carefully [yoniso manasikara] to the mark of the unattractive, unarisen sensual desire does not arise and arisen sensual desire is abandoned.

AN I 13; NDB 100: Bhikkhus, I do not see even a single thing that so causes unarisen qualities to arise and arisen unwholesome qualities to decline as careful attention [yoniso manasikara].

AN I 15; NDB 102: For one who attends carefully [yoniso manasikara], unarisen factors of enlightenment arise and arisen factors of enlightenment reach fulfillment by development.

AN I 31; NDB 117: For one of careful attention, unarisen right view arises and arisen right view increases.

SN I 105; CDB 197: You to, bhikkhus, by careful attention, by careful right striving, must arrive at unsurpassed liberation, must realize unsurpassed liberation.

SN II 10; CDB 537 [here we clearly see in the whole of this discourse CDB 536-540 that careful attention precedes wisdom]: Then, bhikkhus, through careful attention, there took place in me a breakthrough by wisdom.


One needs to keep in mind that the Buddha didn't solely address puthujjanas, there were of course sekhas that needed to be exhorted and guided towards final liberation. Yoniso manasikara is so much regarded as an Ariyan attribute in the Suttas, that it seems such Suttas had to have been addressed to those already familiar with paticcasamuppáda.

SN II 10 is precisely where Ven. Bodhi explains in his footnote that he deviates from the traditional interpretation.

But I'm not here to argue. You're free to believe whatever you like.

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daverupa
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby daverupa » Fri Mar 01, 2013 11:55 pm

I think that idea is mistaken, pulga. I am not here to argue either - I am here to ensure that we are all quite clear about an essential condition for right view:

SN 22.122 wrote:On one occasion Ven. Sariputta & Ven. Maha Kotthita were staying near Varanasi in the Deer Park at Isipatana. Then Ven. Maha Kotthita, emerging from seclusion in the late afternoon, went to Ven. Sariputta and, on arrival, exchanged courteous greetings with him. After an exchange of friendly greetings & courtesies, he sat to one side. As he was sitting there, he said to Ven. Sariputta, "Sariputta my friend, which things should a virtuous monk attend to in an appropriate way?"

"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. A virtuous monk should attend in an appropriate way to these five clinging-aggregates as inconstant, stressful, a disease, a cancer, an arrow, painful, an affliction, alien, a dissolution, an emptiness, not-self. For it is possible that a virtuous monk, attending in an appropriate way to these five clinging-aggregates as inconstant... not-self, would realize the fruit of stream-entry."


yoniso manasikara is here clearly practiced by both puthujjana and sekha alike. (arahants too! all aboard yoniso manasikara!)
Last edited by daverupa on Sat Mar 02, 2013 12:15 am, edited 1 time in total.
    "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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tiltbillings
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Mar 02, 2013 12:08 am

pulga wrote:
One needs to keep in mind that the Buddha didn't solely address puthujjana, there were of course sekhasi] that needed to be exhorted and guided towards final liberation. [i]Yoniso manasikara is so much regarded as an Aryan attribute in the Suttas, that it seems such Suttas had to have been addressed to those already familiar with paticcasamuppáda.
What do you mean "already familiar with paticcasamuppáda?" One can be familiar with paticcasamuppáda without yet having penetrated it, which is where yoniso manasikara comes into play. While yoniso manasikara may be an attribute of an ariya, it is a something to cultivate in order to attain to that level, otherwise one is stuck in the problem that we see with the Sujin people in this thread, you have to be awakened to be awakened.

Ven Bodhi is correct, and I have yet to see the sutta that unequivocally state that yoniso manasikara is only for the ariya. The suttas certainly paint a different picture. While I am not a reject the commentaries in toto as being a total waste of time sort of person, Ven Bodhi does make good arguments when he rejects a commentarial position, and I have yet to disagree with him when he does.


But I'm not here to argue. You're free to believe whatever you like.
It is not an argument; it is a discussion. And you certainly do not have to accept my point of view.
    >> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<<
    -- Proverbs 26:12

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby pulga » Sat Mar 02, 2013 1:00 am

"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. A virtuous monk should attend in an appropriate way to these five clinging-aggregates as inconstant, stressful, a disease, a cancer, an arrow, painful, an affliction, alien, a dissolution, an emptiness, not-self. For it is possible that a virtuous monk, attending in an appropriate way to these five clinging-aggregates as inconstant... not-self, would realize the fruit of stream-entry."


I don't see how that contradicts what I've written. On the contrary, it only affirms that attending to the khandhá in the proper way in accordance with the tilakkhana marks the transition from puthujjana to ariyan.

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daverupa
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby daverupa » Sat Mar 02, 2013 1:05 am

pulga wrote:
"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. A virtuous monk should attend in an appropriate way to these five clinging-aggregates as inconstant, stressful, a disease, a cancer, an arrow, painful, an affliction, alien, a dissolution, an emptiness, not-self. For it is possible that a virtuous monk, attending in an appropriate way to these five clinging-aggregates as inconstant... not-self, would realize the fruit of stream-entry."


I don't see how that contradicts what I've written. On the contrary, it only affirms that attending to the khandhá in the proper way in accordance with the tilakkhana marks the transition from puthujjana to ariyan.


It is possible, but not instantaneous. So there is a time where a certain virtuous puthujjana enacts yoniso manasikara without realizing any fruit. This is opposed to what you have said, which is that only sekha can enact yoniso manasikara, is it not?
    "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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tiltbillings
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Mar 02, 2013 1:10 am

daverupa wrote:
It is possible, but not instantaneous. So there is a time where a certain virtuous puthujjana enacts yoniso manasikara without realizing any fruit.
And the suttas do not oppose that point.
    >> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<<
    -- Proverbs 26:12

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby pulga » Sat Mar 02, 2013 1:48 am

daverupa wrote:It is possible, but not instantaneous.


In the Pali the present participle is used in correlation with sacchikareyyā: in other words, it's contemporaneous. (Besides the sutta is refering to sotápattiphala, not magga.) Let's not forget that even an understanding of the tilakkhana is ariyan. How is the puthujjana supposed to attend properly to what he doesn't understand? The dhammacakkhu is presented as a sudden insight in the Suttas, not something one gradually arrives at.

In addition it is worth noting that the sīlavata bhikkhu is not being referred to as a puthujjana in the Sutta. Might it be referring to one of the anusárí? The Sutta is ambiguous: I wouldn't base such an important aspect of the Teaching on something so anomalous and vague.
Last edited by pulga on Sat Mar 02, 2013 2:22 am, edited 1 time in total.

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tiltbillings
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Mar 02, 2013 2:14 am

pulga wrote: . . .
The problem is, however, that you still have not effectively countered Ven Bodhi's educated demurral, or the other sutta statements that do not support your position.
    >> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<<
    -- Proverbs 26:12

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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby pulga » Sat Mar 02, 2013 2:29 am

tiltbillings wrote:The problem is, however, that you still have not effectively countered Ven Bodhi's educated demurral, or the other sutta statements that do not support your position.


Apart from his brief comment in his footnote I have never seen anything written by Ven. Bodhi supporting his reasons for departing from this fundamentally important aspect of the tradition.


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