Mechanical philosophy and Theravada

Theravāda in the 21st century - modern applications of ancient wisdom

Mechanical philosophy and Theravada

Postby Sein » Fri Jun 07, 2013 3:38 pm

As mechanical philosophy view the world as a large machine, and human being as machine inside that, all rule by certain rules.
The doctrine say that everything is not-self, inconstant and suffering, and karma.
We encourage to view the body as 4 elements. Even the consciousness as a composition of the elements explained in Abhidhamma.
Can we see body as machine, and consciousness, feeling, perception, formation as program?
Is mechanical philosophy consider wrong view in Theravada? Or is it acceptable?
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Re: Mechanical philosophy and Theravada

Postby Kim OHara » Sat Jun 08, 2013 1:56 am

Hello, Sein,
I think what you're talking about is better known as determinism - see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Determinism.
I consider it wrong view because it leaves no space for free choice or moral responsibility, but I'm not sure what "Theravada" thinks about it - there are probably lots of Theravada opinions.

:namaste:
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Re: Mechanical philosophy and Theravada

Postby reflection » Sat Jun 08, 2013 2:06 am

Right view is not just an idea, it is a personal experience of insight into reality, giving rise to a natural understanding of things. So a philosophy in and of itself can never be a right view. It's not really accurate to say "this and this is right view", it's already more accurate to say "one has right view". Even if on the surface things seem to agree that doesn't mean individuals understand things on the same level.
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Re: Mechanical philosophy and Theravada

Postby Sein » Sat Jun 08, 2013 2:55 am

@Kim
I don't think it's determinism.
Because, to know the exact result, you must know all your karma and it's effect (include your present), and since it's simply impossible to know all of that, it's not determinism. And you can always affects the result by your present action.
It's a view that see every thing is some sort of machine. There is not much different between a living and the non-living. The only difference is the living have the consciousness, which it's self consider just a program from the fabric of mental elements in Abhidhamma.
@reflection
Yes, it's personal experience, but a view can be nurture, or can be diminish.
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Re: Mechanical philosophy and Theravada

Postby barcsimalsi » Sat Jun 08, 2013 12:22 pm

Sein wrote:As mechanical philosophy view the world as a large machine, and human being as machine inside that, all rule by certain rules.
The doctrine say that everything is not-self, inconstant and suffering, and karma.
We encourage to view the body as 4 elements. Even the consciousness as a composition of the elements explained in Abhidhamma.
Can we see body as machine, and consciousness, feeling, perception, formation as program?
Is mechanical philosophy consider wrong view in Theravada? Or is it acceptable?

The Buddha had used metaphorical explanation to make his teaching more understandable in various occasions so if that mechanical philosophy helps to polish more of your discernment, why not?

IMO, as long as you don't end up thinking there's a super intelligent designer with ironical wills behind it, there won't be any conflict with Theravada.
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Re: Mechanical philosophy and Theravada

Postby gavesako » Sun Jun 09, 2013 8:27 am

This might be relevant:

The Church-Turing-Deutsch Principle and Buddhist Philosophy.
http://rational-buddhism.blogspot.co.uk ... e-and.html
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

ajahnchah.org - Teachings of Ajahn Chah in many languages
Dhammatube - Videos on Buddhist practice
Ancient Buddhist Texts - Translations and history of Pali texts
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Re: Mechanical philosophy and Theravada

Postby Kim OHara » Mon Jun 10, 2013 4:36 am

gavesako wrote:This might be relevant:

The Church-Turing-Deutsch Principle and Buddhist Philosophy.
http://rational-buddhism.blogspot.co.uk ... e-and.html

Great article - thank you, bhante.

:bow:
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