Commitment to a narrative of liberation

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Re: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby tiltbillings » Wed Sep 25, 2013 3:10 am

kirk5a wrote: I think Dhamma-insight is on a primal level.
Which is true enough; however, one should never, ever underestimate the capacity of the self to manufacture a sense of adamantine certainty.
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: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Sep 25, 2013 3:51 am

Greetings,

kirk5a wrote:Maybe you didn't mean it that way, but the language you used suggested to me insight as views, ideas, outlooks, conclusions, lines of reasoning, worldviews... and as such, unreliable, and not truly eliminating doubt. I think Dhamma-insight is on a primal level.

I was speaking at this sort of level...

Kalama Sutta wrote:When you know for yourselves that, "These qualities are skillful; these qualities are blameless; these qualities are praised by the wise; these qualities, when adopted & carried out, lead to welfare & to happiness" — then you should enter & remain in them.' Thus was it said.

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: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby kirk5a » Wed Sep 25, 2013 3:59 am

tiltbillings wrote:
kirk5a wrote: I think Dhamma-insight is on a primal level.
Which is true enough; however, one should never, ever underestimate the capacity of the self to manufacture a sense of adamantine certainty.

I agree, there are apparently a variety of ways in which one can be deceived about mental and physical phenomena. However, I was simply reflecting on the difference between views, ideas, convictions and the like (conventional "insights") which are rather unreliable (one could change one's mind about such things in the future), and the actuality of one's own basic experience.
"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: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby kirk5a » Wed Sep 25, 2013 4:17 am

retrofuturist wrote:I was speaking at this sort of level...

Kalama Sutta wrote:When you know for yourselves that, "These qualities are skillful; these qualities are blameless; these qualities are praised by the wise; these qualities, when adopted & carried out, lead to welfare & to happiness" — then you should enter & remain in them.' Thus was it said.


Sounds good indeed. In line with what I was thinking about, first of all, one knows the above for oneself (not simply "believing" such), and secondly, what one knows are qualities (not beliefs or narratives), which actually do lead to welfare and happiness. So that is going well beyond simply hanging on to some "narrative of liberation"
"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: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby Viscid » Fri Sep 27, 2013 9:24 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
kirk5a wrote: I think Dhamma-insight is on a primal level.
Which is true enough; however, one should never, ever underestimate the capacity of the self to manufacture a sense of adamantine certainty.


Truth.
"What holds attention determines action." - William James
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Re: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby daverupa » Mon Sep 30, 2013 1:34 am

Has anyone else been following the other thread which spawned this one? It's been all over the map, yet gone nearly nowhere...

I had expected at least some Madhyamika stuff, maybe prompting some discussion of how Nagarjuna & various Mahayana groups in Central India in general were reacting to Sarvastivada-Sautrantika bickering over time, while Sri Lanka remained largely aloof from these goings-on until Buddhaghosa brought the Theravada up to speed on continental developments, dovetailing into possible avenues of discussion vis-a-vis prajnaparamita and the various abhidhammas, if nothing else... anyway, no such luck.

I also lament the wild, wild west of Mahayana texts in terms of the discussions about consciousness in that thread.

/ :soap:
    "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: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby mikenz66 » Mon Sep 30, 2013 10:41 am

Hi Dave,

I've been reading some of it (there is too much of it for me to really digest all of it). Particularly your contributions, and replies to your contributions. :smile:

As you say, it's all over the place on all sorts of issues, most of which seem to have little to do with the OP.

:anjali:
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Re: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Sep 30, 2013 11:09 am

daverupa wrote:Has anyone else been following the other thread which spawned this one? It's been all over the map, yet gone nearly nowhere...

I had expected at least some Madhyamika stuff, maybe prompting some discussion of how Nagarjuna & various Mahayana groups in Central India in general were reacting to Sarvastivada-Sautrantika bickering over time, while Sri Lanka remained largely aloof from these goings-on until Buddhaghosa brought the Theravada up to speed on continental developments, dovetailing into possible avenues of discussion vis-a-vis prajnaparamita and the various abhidhammas, if nothing else... anyway, no such luck.

I also lament the wild, wild west of Mahayana texts in terms of the discussions about consciousness in that thread.

/ :soap:
What thread are you referencing here?
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: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby imagemarie » Mon Sep 30, 2013 12:23 pm

"Early Buddhism and Mahayana", I think tilt.

:popcorn:

:anjali:
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Re: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Sep 30, 2013 1:05 pm

imagemarie wrote:"Early Buddhism and Mahayana", I think tilt.

:popcorn:

:anjali:
Thanks. Obviously, had I looked where I should obviously have looked I would seen the obvious.
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: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby mikenz66 » Mon Sep 30, 2013 7:08 pm

imagemarie wrote:"Early Buddhism and Mahayana", I think tilt.

Yes, over on Dharma Wheel:
http://dharmawheel.net/viewtopic.php?f=39&t=14040
It is now up to 33 pages, though most of that does not directly address the topic. Much of the discussion has been about technicalities of various Mahayana interpretations of not-self and so on...

:anjali:
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Re: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby daverupa » Mon Sep 30, 2013 9:20 pm

mikenz66 wrote:Much of the discussion has been about technicalities of various Mahayana interpretations of not-self and so on...


As far as I can tell, the thread is mostly rehashing Madhyamika-Yogacara debates. I'm not sure why self-reflexivity has even come up as a hinge issue there... the early Buddhist texts seem to have been mostly, though perhaps politely, ignored.
    "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: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby Kim OHara » Tue Oct 01, 2013 2:08 am

tiltbillings wrote:
imagemarie wrote:"Early Buddhism and Mahayana", I think tilt.

:popcorn:

:anjali:
Thanks. Obviously, had I looked where I should obviously have looked I would seen the obvious.

Not necessarily. Many of our politicians don't manage such a feat :toilet:
But probably, since you are who you are. :smile:

:coffee:
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Re: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby chownah » Tue Oct 01, 2013 2:57 am

daverupa,
What is self reflexivity?
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Re: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby tiltbillings » Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:45 am

daverupa wrote:
mikenz66 wrote:Much of the discussion has been about technicalities of various Mahayana interpretations of not-self and so on...


As far as I can tell, the thread is mostly rehashing Madhyamika-Yogacara debates.
From Tibetan tenet system perspective, which is hardly an accurate portrayal of Indian Yogachara. It all makes me very glad not to be a Mahayanist.
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: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby tiltbillings » Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:46 am

Kim OHara wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
imagemarie wrote:"Early Buddhism and Mahayana", I think tilt.

:popcorn:

:anjali:
Thanks. Obviously, had I looked where I should obviously have looked I would seen the obvious.

Not necessarily. Many of our politicians don't manage such a feat :toilet:
But probably, since you are who you are. :smile:

:coffee:
Kim
Why, thanks for the rather dim compliment.
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: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby daverupa » Tue Oct 01, 2013 11:31 am

chownah wrote:daverupa,
What is self reflexivity?
chownah


I'm pretty confused by that as well. As far as I can tell, it's being used by certain Mahayana folk to describe a quality of vinnana, such that not only does vinnana take an object, but vinnana also cognizes the presence of vinnana.

I'm pretty sure this is motivated by further considerations, re: Buddha-Nature, but it's not a Nikaya premise - nothing hangs on it, but the orange 'vinnana' in the previous paragraph is probably more accurately termed 'citta' - and as far as I can tell it's nowhere in the early prajnaparamita, so the thread over there is basically a bust.
    "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: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby chownah » Tue Oct 01, 2013 2:54 pm

daverupa,
Seems like consciousness recognizing its own presence is a way of describing sentience......but I don't know.....
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Re: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby daverupa » Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:18 pm

chownah wrote:daverupa,
Seems like consciousness recognizing its own presence is a way of describing sentience......but I don't know.....
chownah


Yeah, that sounds about right...

I mean, vinnana can receive any number of definitions which aren't really seperable from sanna and vedana, so talking about vinnana in-and-of-itself requires talking about a certain arupa attainment, else speculation and reasoned argumentation, which turns out one of two ways.

SN 22.53 wrote:Were someone to say, 'I will describe a coming, a going, a passing away, an arising, a growth, an increase, or a proliferation of consciousness apart from form, from feeling, from perception, from fabrications,' that would be impossible.


(A quote which, by the way, makes that arupa attainment seem quite odd...)

Anyway, to then tie a slew of soteriological claims to that specific exploration deviates from the Buddha's approach and furthermore is in danger of running afoul of warnings against ossifying meditational/contemplative experiences per the Brahmajala Sutta.

Even if consciousness could be aware of itself in a pristine state of integrated wholeness with the cosmos... even that would be with contact as condition...
    "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: Commitment to a narrative of liberation

Postby beeblebrox » Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:53 pm

daverupa wrote:
chownah wrote:daverupa,
What is self reflexivity?
chownah


I'm pretty confused by that as well. As far as I can tell, it's being used by certain Mahayana folk to describe a quality of vinnana, such that not only does vinnana take an object, but vinnana also cognizes the presence of vinnana.


Hi Dave,

You don't think we can be aware of our consciousness?

Also, I don't think that vinnana actually "takes" an object... it only arises when there is a contact in between a sense and its object.

For example: mind + object (or say, an object called "consciousness," in the namarupa scheme of things) = consciousness of the mind that is in contact with the "consciousness."

Does that deviate from what the Buddha taught?

:anjali:
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