Moaning & Groaning and the Path & Fruit

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
mogg
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Re: Moaning & Groaning and the Path & Fruit

Postby mogg » Fri Apr 19, 2013 12:37 pm

Coyote wrote:I don't think Ajahn Mun is austere and emaciated. He is rather "dwelling alone, secluded, heedful, ardent, & resolute — so that in no long time he would reach & remain in the supreme goal of the holy life" As it says in many places in the first 4 nikayas.

Image

This is actually my favourite picture of Ajahn Chah. I have it framed above my fridge.

mogg
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Re: Moaning & Groaning and the Path & Fruit

Postby mogg » Fri Apr 19, 2013 12:41 pm

manas wrote:we/can/read/the.words/of/sutta,/but
Ajahn/Mun/lived/the/words/of/this/sutta:

"Calamity, tumor, misfortune,
disease, an arrow, a danger for me."
Seeing this danger in sensual strands,
wander alone
like a rhinoceros.

Cold & heat, hunger & thirst,
wind & sun, horseflies & snakes:
enduring all these, without exception,
wander alone
like a rhinoceros.

As a great white elephant,
with massive shoulders,
renouncing his herd,
lives in the wilds wherever he wants,
wander alone
like a rhinoceros.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html


:anjali:

No disagreement from me.

P.S I clearly was never postulating that Ajahn Chah was walking around with a perpetual grin on his face, merely that being sombre faced and serious isn't a necessary part of the path. I'm currently in Thailand, and over here they love to place pictures of monks on the roadside, and it seems like a competition to see which Ajahn can look the most serious and grumpy. All the accomplished meditators that I know are happy people with a ready smile so I think it sends the wrong message to people.

MIDDLE WAY

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kirk5a
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Re: Moaning & Groaning and the Path & Fruit

Postby kirk5a » Fri Apr 19, 2013 12:46 pm

mogg wrote:
David N. Snyder wrote:Not in the first 4 Nikayas, but it is in the Sutta Pitaka; the Khuddaka Nikaya > Dhammapada, verse 395.

The message is not consistent with the first four nikayas which take precedent.

It is in fact consistent with the ascetic practices (dhutanga) mentioned in AN 5:181-190.
"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

mogg
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Re: Moaning & Groaning and the Path & Fruit

Postby mogg » Fri Apr 19, 2013 1:16 pm

kirk5a wrote:
mogg wrote:
David N. Snyder wrote:Not in the first 4 Nikayas, but it is in the Sutta Pitaka; the Khuddaka Nikaya > Dhammapada, verse 395.

The message is not consistent with the first four nikayas which take precedent.

It is in fact consistent with the ascetic practices (dhutanga) mentioned in AN 5:181-190.

There is nothing in those suttas that supports your claim. If you disagree please produce the paragraph(s) in question.

With metta

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Re: Moaning & Groaning and the Path & Fruit

Postby kirk5a » Fri Apr 19, 2013 1:31 pm

AN 1:191 wrote:Bhikkhus, the foremost of my bhikkhu disciples among those who expound the ascetic practices is Mahākassapa."

AN 5:181-190 wrote:Bhikkhus, there are these five kinds of forest dwellers... One who becomes a forest dweller for the sake of fewness of desires, for the sake of contentment, for the sake of eliminating [defilements], for the sake of solitude, for the sake of simplicity, is the foremost, the best, the preeminent, the supreme, and the finest of these five kinds of forest dwellers... there are these five kinds of wearers of rag-robes... these five who dwell at the foot of a tree... these five who dwell in a charnel ground... these five who dwell in the open air... these five who observe the sitter's practice... these five who observe the any-bed-user's practice... these five who observe the one-session practice... these five who observe the later-food-refuser's practice... these five who observe the practice of eating only food in the almsbowl.
"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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Re: Moaning & Groaning and the Path & Fruit

Postby mogg » Fri Apr 19, 2013 1:40 pm

kirk5a wrote:
AN 1:191 wrote:Bhikkhus, the foremost of my bhikkhu disciples among those who expound the ascetic practices is Mahākassapa."

AN 5:181-190 wrote:Bhikkhus, there are these five kinds of forest dwellers... One who becomes a forest dweller for the sake of fewness of desires, for the sake of contentment, for the sake of eliminating [defilements], for the sake of solitude, for the sake of simplicity, is the foremost, the best, the preeminent, the supreme, and the finest of these five kinds of forest dwellers... there are these five kinds of wearers of rag-robes... these five who dwell at the foot of a tree... these five who dwell in a charnel ground... these five who dwell in the open air... these five who observe the sitter's practice... these five who observe the any-bed-user's practice... these five who observe the one-session practice... these five who observe the later-food-refuser's practice... these five who observe the practice of eating only food in the almsbowl.

There is nothing in there which advocates emaciation kirk which is the entirety of this discussion. What you have listed is run of the mill forest tradition practice.

Have you ever stayed at a forest monastery?

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kirk5a
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Re: Moaning & Groaning and the Path & Fruit

Postby kirk5a » Fri Apr 19, 2013 1:51 pm

mogg wrote:There is nothing in there which advocates emaciation kirk which is the entirety of this discussion. What you have listed is run of the mill forest tradition practice.

Have you ever stayed at a forest monastery?

No I have not stayed at a forest monastery. And staying at a monastery is not what is being described by the ascetic practices. I said those passages from the Angutta Nikaya are consistent with Dhp 395, which does not "advocate emaciation." Having veins showing is a condition of minimal body fat, not necessarily "emaciation" which implies malnutrition. Ajahn Mun lived to the age of 79, so he was not starving.
"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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Re: Moaning & Groaning and the Path & Fruit

Postby kirk5a » Fri Apr 19, 2013 2:18 pm

"emaciation"

pre-Middle Path, later renounced by the Buddha

52. "Sariputta, there are certain recluses and brahmans whose doctrine and view is this: 'Purification comes about through food.'[19] They say: 'Let us live on kola-fruits,' and they eat kola-fruits, they eat kola-fruit powder, they drink kola-fruit water, and they make many kinds of kola-fruit concoctions. Now I recall having eaten a single kola-fruit a day. Sariputta, you may think that the kola-fruit was bigger at that time, yet you should not regard it so: the kola-fruit was then at most the same size as now. Through feeding on a single kola-fruit a day, my body reached a state of extreme emaciation. Because of eating so little my limbs became like the jointed segments of vine stems or bamboo stems. Because of eating so little my backside became like a camel's hoof. Because of eating so little the projections on my spine stood forth like corded beads. Because of eating so little my ribs jutted out as gaunt as the crazy rafters of an old roofless barn. Because of eating so little the gleam of my eyes sank far down in their sockets, looking like a gleam of water which has sunk far down in a deep well. Because of eating so little my scalp shrivelled and withered as a green bitter gourd shrivels and withers in the wind and sun. Because of eating so little my belly skin adhered to my backbone; thus if I touched my belly skin I encountered my backbone, and if I touched my backbone I encountered my belly skin. Because of eating so little, if I tried to ease my body by rubbing my limbs with my hands, the hair, rotted at its roots, fell from my body as I rubbed.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... el390.html

Image
"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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Re: Moaning & Groaning and the Path & Fruit

Postby mogg » Fri Apr 19, 2013 2:19 pm

kirk5a wrote:
mogg wrote:There is nothing in there which advocates emaciation kirk which is the entirety of this discussion. What you have listed is run of the mill forest tradition practice.

Have you ever stayed at a forest monastery?

No I have not stayed at a forest monastery. And staying at a monastery is not what is being described by the ascetic practices.

Please elaborate.

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kirk5a
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Re: Moaning & Groaning and the Path & Fruit

Postby kirk5a » Fri Apr 19, 2013 2:35 pm

What's to elaborate? It describes those who dwell in the forest, not in a monastery. As Ajahn Mun did for much of his life.
"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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Re: Moaning & Groaning and the Path & Fruit

Postby mogg » Fri Apr 19, 2013 3:08 pm

kirk5a wrote:What's to elaborate? It describes those who dwell in the forest, not in a monastery. As Ajahn Mun did for much of his life.


I'm sensing a disconnect between practical reality and conceptual understanding here Kirk. I recommend coming out to Asia and staying at some of the forest monasteries in Northern Thailand, Myanmar, and Northern Malaysia to see the shortcomings in that last comment.

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kirk5a
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Re: Moaning & Groaning and the Path & Fruit

Postby kirk5a » Fri Apr 19, 2013 3:17 pm

mogg wrote:I'm sensing a disconnect between practical reality and conceptual understanding here Kirk. I recommend coming out to Asia and staying at some of the forest monasteries in Northern Thailand, Myanmar, and Northern Malaysia to see the shortcomings in that last comment.

Thanks for the recommendation but it's not relevant to the discussion. I didn't make any claims about how practical it might be to follow the ascetic practices in SE Asia today.
"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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Re: Moaning & Groaning and the Path & Fruit

Postby mogg » Fri Apr 19, 2013 3:53 pm

kirk5a wrote:
mogg wrote:I'm sensing a disconnect between practical reality and conceptual understanding here Kirk. I recommend coming out to Asia and staying at some of the forest monasteries in Northern Thailand, Myanmar, and Northern Malaysia to see the shortcomings in that last comment.

Thanks for the recommendation but it's not relevant to the discussion. I didn't make any claims about how practical it might be to follow the ascetic practices in SE Asia today.

You're making claims about how to practice the path when its clear that you have little understanding yourself. I will make one final comment, there is a distinction between simplicity and asceticism. In my experience one is more important than the other.

With metta

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kirk5a
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Re: Moaning & Groaning and the Path & Fruit

Postby kirk5a » Fri Apr 19, 2013 4:04 pm

mogg wrote:You're making claims about how to practice the path when its clear that you have little understanding yourself.

I would appreciate it if you not misrepresent what I have said, nor attempt to personalize the discussion.
"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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