no (khandhas)aggregates?

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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby robertk » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:10 am

tiltbillings wrote:
SarathW wrote:Some info: Please note the difference between ultimate sense and absolute sense

40. Six kinds of Pa¤¤atti—
1. Matter, feeling, etc. exist in an ultimate sense.
2. Land, mountain, etc. are terms given to things
that do not exist in an ultimate sense.
3. ‘Possessor of sixfold supernormal vision’.
Here the former does not exist in an ultimate
sense, but the latter does.
4. Woman’s voice. Here the voice exists in an ultimate
sense, but not the woman.
5. Eye-consciousness. Here the sensitive eye exists
in an ultimate sense, and so does the consciousness
dependent on it.
6. King’s son. Here neither the son nor the king
exists in an ultimate sense

Page 429
http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/abhidhamma.pdf
This a very late Abhidhamma text that is not part of the Tipitaka. What "ultimate" mean here? If you are going to use the word, you need to be able to define it.

It is a classical Theravada.
As the translator writes: "The Abhidhammattha Sangaha, the authorship of
which is attributed to venerable Anuruddha Thera, an
Indian monk of Kanjeevaram (Kà¤cipura), gives an epitome
of the entire Abhidhamma Piñaka. It is still the most
fitting introduction to Abhidhamma."
It was recited at the recent councils in Myanmar. It is so highly respected as it keeps strictly within the Abhidhamma Tipitaka and the Commentaries of the Abhidhamma. There is nothing in it that could be said to depart from the ancients. Even though it was written only one millennia ago.
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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby robertk » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:12 am

SarathW wrote:mn109 All good to me except notes:
viññanam anidassanam !!!!!!!!!!!!

I am lost, why do you bring up this point?
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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby robertk » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:14 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Tilt,

...or binary (i.e. doesn't exist, exists, doesn't exist).

Metta,
Retro. :)

Could you explain what you mean by this.. Is that what you think paramattha dhammas are supposed to do?
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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:31 am

Greetings Robert,

If dhammas are regarded as atomic and irreducible, they cannot be said to be reduced via "passing away", nor increased via "arising", because such transitional modes are inconsistent with the digital or binary (1/0, exist/doesn'texist) nature of anything which is inherently atomic and irreducible.

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: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby robertk » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:35 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Mike,



The Buddha exhorts that we should "not get involved with or appropriate these attachments, clingings, fixations of awareness, biases, or obsessions", because they are, as he goes to point out, merely products of paticcasamuppada.

Therefore, your question of whether I thought that SN 12.15 had any bearing on the matter of realism, it does to the extent that it makes clear that one should not get involved with it. Sujin-style Abhidhammic presentations certainly "get involved" with realism and allow it to become "clingings, fixations of awareness, biases, or obsessions".

Metta,
Retro. :)

From the Visuddhimagga
VISM XVII 43
Amongst women, men, etc., which are in the ultimate sense non-existent,
it hurries on (paramatthato AVIJjamánesu itthi-purisádisu JAvati), and amongst the
aggregates, etc., which are existent,
it does not hurry on (vijjamánesu pi
khandhádisu na javati), thus it is ignorance (avijjá). Furthermore, it is ignorance
because it conceals the physical bases and objects of eye-consciousness, etc.,
and the dependent origination and dependently-originated states.


When we understand khandhas (aggregates) we know they are absolutely not-self. The claim that by believing they arise and cease means one must cling to them and obsess is strange.
In a flash of lightening, according to the Commentaries, billions of dhammas have arisen and ceased, never to arise again. If one could see this how could there be any clinging, they are so insignificant.
It is because one does not see this and instead imagines that concepts like people, girl, wife, boyfriend - and especially "my life"- have some substance, that they last seconds, hours, days and years that clinging grows so strong.
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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:38 am

Greetings Robert,

Yes, I accept that what you present is the Classical Theravada position, in spite of what the suttas actually say.

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: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby robertk » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:41 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Robert,

If dhammas are regarded as atomic and irreducible, they cannot be said to be reduced via "passing away", nor increased via "arising", because such transitional modes are inconsistent with the digital or binary (1/0, exist/doesn'texist) nature of anything which is inherently atomic and irreducible.

Metta,
Retro. :)

Umm I don't know what that means..Once dhammas cease they are gone, they never come back. They completely cease forever.
Those that were there a second ago have all gone now. But new ones different ones arise if conditions are present. Because those conditions, such as kamma done in the past, may be similar the present dhammas can seem like the old ones- but they are not the same at all.
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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:44 am

retrofuturist wrote:Given that the sutta is about the extent to which there is Right View, and Bhikkhu Bodhi presents a philosophical realism that takes sides in the aforementioned polarity of existence/non-existence despite what the Buddha is actually endorsing, people may get upset about the implications of that and what is being said about his View (or as you call it, "his understanding of the Dhamma") when assessed via the Buddha's criteria for the extent to which there is Right View. (Further reading: http://www.dhammawiki.com/index.php?tit ... %2C_Part_2 )

OK, thanks for making your particular interpretation clear. I don't actually to find Ven Nananda's critique particularly compelling in this case. I think it's one of those cases of over-reading meaning into terms like "real". I would not conclude that Bhikkhu Bodhi has wrong view.

Besides, most commentators, including Ven Nananda, take the point of the "notion of existence/non-existence" polarity in that to be mostly about eternalism vs annihilationism (see the link I gave above).


:anjali:
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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby robertk » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:44 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Robert,

Yes, I accept that what you present is the Classical Theravada position, in spite of what the suttas actually say.

Metta,
Retro. :)

Thanks, that is all I want to put forward in this thread. I have no interest in changing peoples ideas, I simply want the Theravada position understood correctly.
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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:46 am

Greetings Robert,

robertk wrote:Thanks, that is all I want to put forward in this thread. I have no interest in changing peoples ideas, I simply want the Theravada position understood correctly.

It's appreciated.

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: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby robertk » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:56 am

From the Mahániddesa (Nidd I 42){part of the sutta pitaka]
No store of broken states, no future stock;
Those born balance like seeds on needle points.
Breakup of states is foredoomed at their birth;
Those present decay, unmingled with those past.
They come from nowhere, break up, nowhere go;
Flash in and out, as lightning in the sky23 (Nidd I 42).
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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby Dan74 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 6:32 am

Of what use is the duality of real vs unreal for practice?

To me 'real' is a bit of a black box - 'can't go in - it's real' but definition, there is "it" and there is "me" or "citta" or something that perceives. Whereas, if all these designations are put aside as provisional, then real investigation with no preconceived notions of 'real' or 'unreal', can take place.
_/|\_
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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby robertk » Wed Nov 27, 2013 7:52 am

tiltbillings wrote:
*[i]Robert: Note that these designations happen long, long before they are linguistic labels. What is called a thought in conventional language is comprised of billions of momentary arisings which repeatedly take a concept as object and may include mentally naming it. Because of this repetition - and the lack of insight into the actual dhammas - the illusion of permanence is solidified[/i].



This is the overly complicated later Abhidhamma stuff. Curious as to the source for the claim that: "Note that these designations happen long, long before they are linguistic labels."
.

From Nyanponika Abhidhamma Studies
Researches in Buddhist Psychology

In order to understand
how “remembering” or “recognizing”, too, is implied
in every act of perception we should mention that
according to the deeply penetrative analysis of the
Abhidhamma the apparently simple act, for example,
of seeing a rose, is in reality a very complex
process composed of different phases, each consisting of numerous smaller combinations of conscious
processes (citta-vãthi) which again are made
up of several single moments of consciousness (cittakkhana)
following each other in a definite sequence
of diverse functions. Among these phases there is
one that connects the present perception of a rose
with a previous one, and there is another that
attaches to the present perception the name “rose”,
remembered from previous experience. Not only in
relation to similar experiences in a relatively distant
past, but also between those infinitesimally brief
single phases and successive processes the connecting
function of rudimentary “memory” must be
assumed to operate, because each phase and each
lesser successive state has to “remember” the previous
one — a process called by the later Abhidhammikas
“grasping the past” (atãta-ggahana). Finally,
the individual contributions of all those different
perceptual processes have to be remembered and
co-ordinated in order to form the final and complete
perception of a rose.
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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby robertk » Wed Nov 27, 2013 8:22 am

mikenz66 wrote:My impression is that many of these discussions seem to revolve around how one translates paramattha. Does the translation "real", with all of it's overtones really capture the meaning? Would a term such as "irreducible" be better?
The Abhidhamma appears to be a detailed description of how to analyse experience. Whether the irreducible dhammas are "real" (whatever that means) or not, seems to me to be beside the point. That concepts such as "person" is fundamentally different from those irreducible dhammas of experience is.

My point is that pondering over the "reality" of paramattha dhammas seems to me to be a side-show to what is actually important to the application of Abhidhamma.

:anjali:
Mike

Earlier in this thread I quoted Karunadasa
The term paramattha is sometimes paraphased as bhutattha (the actual).67 This is explained to mean that the dhammas are not non-existent like an illusion or mirage or like the soul (purisa) and primordial nature (pakati) of the non-Buddhist schools of thought.68 The evidence for their existence is not based either on conventions (sammuti) or on mere scriptural authority (anussava).69 On the contrary, their very existence is vouchsafed by their own intrinsic nature.70 The very fact of their existence is the very mark of their reality. As the Visuddhimagga observes: "It (= dhamma) is that which, for those who examine it with the eye of understanding, is not misleading like an illusion, deceptive like a mirage, or undiscoverable like the self of the sectarians, but is rather the domain of noble knowledge as the real unmisleading actual state." 71 The kind of existence implied here is not past or future existence, but present actual and verifiable existence (satvijjamanata).72 This emphasis on their actuality in the present phase of time rules out any association with the Sarvastivadins' theory of tri-temporal existence. Thus, for th Theravadin, the use of the term paramattha does not carry any substantialist implications. It only means that the mental and material dhammas represent the utmost limits to which the analysis of empirical existence can be pushed
Is there anything you find wrong here?
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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby tiltbillings » Wed Nov 27, 2013 8:25 am

robertk wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
*[i]Robert: Note that these designations happen long, long before they are linguistic labels. What is called a thought in conventional language is comprised of billions of momentary arisings which repeatedly take a concept as object and may include mentally naming it. Because of this repetition - and the lack of insight into the actual dhammas - the illusion of permanence is solidified[/i].



This is the overly complicated later Abhidhamma stuff. Curious as to the source for the claim that: "Note that these designations happen long, long before they are linguistic labels."
.

From Nyanponika Abhidhamma Studies
Researches in Buddhist Psychology

In order to understand
how “remembering” or “recognizing”, too, is implied
in every act of perception we should mention that
according to the deeply penetrative analysis of the
Abhidhamma the apparently simple act, for example,
of seeing a rose, is in reality a very complex
process composed of different phases, each consisting of numerous smaller combinations of conscious
processes (citta-vãthi) which again are made
up of several single moments of consciousness (cittakkhana)
following each other in a definite sequence
of diverse functions. Among these phases there is
one that connects the present perception of a rose
with a previous one, and there is another that
attaches to the present perception the name “rose”,
remembered from previous experience. Not only in
relation to similar experiences in a relatively distant
past, but also between those infinitesimally brief
single phases and successive processes the connecting
function of rudimentary “memory” must be
assumed to operate, because each phase and each
lesser successive state has to “remember” the previous
one — a process called by the later Abhidhammikas
“grasping the past” (atãta-ggahana). Finally,
the individual contributions of all those different
perceptual processes have to be remembered and
co-ordinated in order to form the final and complete
perception of a rose.
A good book that does not seem to support your view of things. The quotation of Ven Nyanaponika book certainly does not support highlighted contention above.
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: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby robertk » Wed Nov 27, 2013 9:12 am

Dear Tilt,
take the case of a dog seeing a bone. The dog doesn't think "ah bone, I will eat that" . What happens is similar to the process described by Nyanaponika on seeing a rose.
After the first sensedoor process which sees the colors comprising the bone there are mind door processes. This is repeated millions of times- a short time in conventional time, but very long in citta moments- before the dog realizes that it is edible food. All pre-linguistic and for the dog it doesn't even get thought about in linguistic words.
Yet there is knowing, after enough processes, that it is food.
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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby Zom » Wed Nov 27, 2013 9:17 am

No need to cite Visuddhimagga to prove it.

There is a sutta 8-) SN 22.94

http://suttacentral.net/sn22.94/en/


And what is it, bhikkhus, that the wise in the world agree upon as existing, of which I too say that it exists? Form that is impermanent, suffering, and subject to change: this the wise in the world agree upon as existing, and I too say that it exists. Feeling … Perception … Volitional formations … Consciousness that is impermanent, suffering, and subject to change: this the wise in the world agree upon as existing, and I too say that it exists.
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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 9:29 am

robertk wrote:
mikenz66 wrote:My impression is that many of these discussions seem to revolve around how one translates paramattha. Does the translation "real", with all of it's overtones really capture the meaning? Would a term such as "irreducible" be better?
The Abhidhamma appears to be a detailed description of how to analyse experience. Whether the irreducible dhammas are "real" (whatever that means) or not, seems to me to be beside the point. That concepts such as "person" is fundamentally different from those irreducible dhammas of experience is.

My point is that pondering over the "reality" of paramattha dhammas seems to me to be a side-show to what is actually important to the application of Abhidhamma.

:anjali:
Mike

Earlier in this thread I quoted Karunadasa
The term paramattha is sometimes paraphased as bhutattha (the actual).67 This is explained to mean that the dhammas are not non-existent like an illusion or mirage or like the soul (purisa) and primordial nature (pakati) of the non-Buddhist schools of thought.68 The evidence for their existence is not based either on conventions (sammuti) or on mere scriptural authority (anussava).69 On the contrary, their very existence is vouchsafed by their own intrinsic nature.70 The very fact of their existence is the very mark of their reality. As the Visuddhimagga observes: "It (= dhamma) is that which, for those who examine it with the eye of understanding, is not misleading like an illusion, deceptive like a mirage, or undiscoverable like the self of the sectarians, but is rather the domain of noble knowledge as the real unmisleading actual state." 71 The kind of existence implied here is not past or future existence, but present actual and verifiable existence (satvijjamanata).72 This emphasis on their actuality in the present phase of time rules out any association with the Sarvastivadins' theory of tri-temporal existence. Thus, for th Theravadin, the use of the term paramattha does not carry any substantialist implications. It only means that the mental and material dhammas represent the utmost limits to which the analysis of empirical exist :anjali: ence can be pushed
Is there anything you find wrong here?

This is certainly how I tend to interpret it:
Thus, for the Theravadin, the use of the term paramattha does not carry any substantialist implications. It only means that the mental and material dhammas represent the utmost limits to which the analysis of empirical existence can be pushed.

:anjali:
Mike
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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby Mkoll » Wed Nov 27, 2013 9:42 am

"There is the case where an uninstructed, run-of-the-mill person — who has no regard for noble ones, is not well-versed or disciplined in their Dhamma; who has no regard for men of integrity, is not well-versed or disciplined in their Dhamma — doesn't discern what ideas are fit for attention or what ideas are unfit for attention. This being so, he doesn't attend to ideas fit for attention and attends (instead) to ideas unfit for attention...

"This is how he attends inappropriately: 'Was I in the past? Was I not in the past? What was I in the past? How was I in the past? Having been what, what was I in the past? Shall I be in the future? Shall I not be in the future? What shall I be in the future? How shall I be in the future? Having been what, what shall I be in the future?' Or else he is inwardly perplexed about the immediate present: 'Am I? Am I not? What am I? How am I? Where has this being come from? Where is it bound?'

"As he attends inappropriately in this way, one of six kinds of view arises in him: The view I have a self arises in him as true & established, or the view I have no self... or the view It is precisely by means of self that I perceive self... or the view It is precisely by means of self that I perceive not-self... or the view It is precisely by means of not-self that I perceive self arises in him as true & established, or else he has a view like this: This very self of mine — the knower that is sensitive here & there to the ripening of good & bad actions — is the self of mine that is constant, everlasting, eternal, not subject to change, and will endure as long as eternity. This is called a thicket of views, a wilderness of views, a contortion of views, a writhing of views, a fetter of views. Bound by a fetter of views, the uninstructed run-of-the-mill person is not freed from birth, aging, & death, from sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair. He is not freed, I tell you, from suffering & stress.

-MN 2, Sabbasava Sutta

Staying at Savatthi. "Monks, there once was a time when the Dasarahas had a large drum called 'Summoner.' Whenever Summoner was split, the Dasarahas inserted another peg in it, until the time came when Summoner's original wooden body had disappeared and only a conglomeration of pegs remained.

"In the same way, in the course of the future there will be monks who won't listen when discourses that are words of the Tathagata — deep, deep in their meaning, transcendent, connected with emptiness — are being recited. They won't lend ear, won't set their hearts on knowing them, won't regard these teachings as worth grasping or mastering. But they will listen when discourses that are literary works — the works of poets, elegant in sound, elegant in rhetoric, the work of outsiders, words of disciples — are recited. They will lend ear and set their hearts on knowing them. They will regard these teachings as worth grasping & mastering.

"In this way the disappearance of the discourses that are words of the Tathagata — deep, deep in their meaning, transcendent, connected with emptiness — will come about.

"Thus you should train yourselves: 'We will listen when discourses that are words of the Tathagata — deep, deep in their meaning, transcendent, connected with emptiness — are being recited. We will lend ear, will set our hearts on knowing them, will regard these teachings as worth grasping & mastering.' That's how you should train yourselves."

-SN 20.7, Ani Sutta
Peace,
James
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Re: no (khandhas)aggregates?

Postby tiltbillings » Wed Nov 27, 2013 9:56 am

mikenz66 wrote:
robertk wrote:
mikenz66 wrote:My impression is that many of these discussions seem to revolve around how one translates paramattha. Does the translation "real", with all of it's overtones really capture the meaning? Would a term such as "irreducible" be better?
The Abhidhamma appears to be a detailed description of how to analyse experience. Whether the irreducible dhammas are "real" (whatever that means) or not, seems to me to be beside the point. That concepts such as "person" is fundamentally different from those irreducible dhammas of experience is.

My point is that pondering over the "reality" of paramattha dhammas seems to me to be a side-show to what is actually important to the application of Abhidhamma.

:anjali:
Mike

Earlier in this thread I quoted Karunadasa
The term paramattha is sometimes paraphased as bhutattha (the actual).67 This is explained to mean that the dhammas are not non-existent like an illusion or mirage or like the soul (purisa) and primordial nature (pakati) of the non-Buddhist schools of thought.68 The evidence for their existence is not based either on conventions (sammuti) or on mere scriptural authority (anussava).69 On the contrary, their very existence is vouchsafed by their own intrinsic nature.70 The very fact of their existence is the very mark of their reality. As the Visuddhimagga observes: "It (= dhamma) is that which, for those who examine it with the eye of understanding, is not misleading like an illusion, deceptive like a mirage, or undiscoverable like the self of the sectarians, but is rather the domain of noble knowledge as the real unmisleading actual state." 71 The kind of existence implied here is not past or future existence, but present actual and verifiable existence (satvijjamanata).72 This emphasis on their actuality in the present phase of time rules out any association with the Sarvastivadins' theory of tri-temporal existence. Thus, for th Theravadin, the use of the term paramattha does not carry any substantialist implications. It only means that the mental and material dhammas represent the utmost limits to which the analysis of empirical exist :anjali: ence can be pushed
Is there anything you find wrong here?

This is certainly how I tend to interpret it:
Thus, for the Theravadin, the use of the term paramattha does not carry any substantialist implications. It only means that the mental and material dhammas represent the utmost limits to which the analysis of empirical existence can be pushed.
in other words, the concept of dhammas are a particular way of talking about experience. And as Prof. Dr. Y. Karunadasa states in the my above quote of him: In the Pali tradition it is only for the sake of definition and description that each dhamma is postulated as if it were a separate entity; but in reality it is by no means a solitary phenomenon having an existence of its own . . . .
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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