Mode of instruction

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Mode of instruction

Postby Gullible » Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:28 am

Hi everyone
My first post is really a question. I think I have seen the Abhidhamma referred to as a "mode of instruction" - and maybe the suttas are another?
Does anyone know what "mode of instruction" means in this context? What is the Pali expression?
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Re: Mode of instruction

Postby Gullible » Sun Aug 30, 2009 6:49 am

No responses to this? Obviously my powers of explanation failed me - as they so often do. I had in mind at the time to explore what is the purpose of Abhidhamma. Some Dhamma friends I know seem to treat it as a catechism to be accepted literally - to the point where even deviations from the official terminology are frowned upon. In contrast to this, I once read a book by a Sri Lankan Abhidhamma expert who suggested that at least one of the purposes of Abhidhamma was to reinforce Buddhist practice by demonstrating intellectually how there can be courses of action without a permanent self. It has been my experience to date that studying Abhidhamma is extremely valuable up to a point beyond which annihilationism sneaks into play or one lives in constant fear of "wrong view of self" (colloquially put: paralysis by analysis). Has anyone else had this experience? How did you deal with it?
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Re: Mode of instruction

Postby acinteyyo » Sun Aug 30, 2009 7:04 am

Gullible wrote:It has been my experience to date that studying Abhidhamma is extremely valuable up to a point beyond which annihilationism sneaks into play or one lives in constant fear of "wrong view of self" (colloquially put: paralysis by analysis). Has anyone else had this experience? How did you deal with it?

imho the Abhidhamma seems to be not reliable. I only read a few things which are considerd to be Abhidhamma and decided to not read it again. I can't talk about the whole Abhidhamma, my experience was that some Abhidhamma teachings misrepresent teachings from the Suttas, (e.g. paticcasamuppada or anatta) where the explanation doesn't really explain something but just passes over the problem not solving any issues. I stay to the Suttas. This applies just for me, you have to see for yourself.

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Re: Mode of instruction

Postby cooran » Sun Aug 30, 2009 7:47 am

Can you give traceable references to back up your statement?

This is very important ... I mean if the Arahants at the Council didn't know as much as acinteyyo then we've all been fooled about lots of things. And fancy putting it in the Tipitaka. Not to mention the hundreds of thousands of bhikkhus in the past and in the present who have also clearly been duped..... :shock:
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Re: Mode of instruction

Postby Ben » Sun Aug 30, 2009 10:39 am

Dear members

Please remember the terms of service, in particular, the special guidelines that operate in the Classical Mahavihara Forum, which this Abhidhamma forum falls under.

The Abhidhamma and Classical Theravada sub-forums are specialized venues for the discussion of the Abhidhamma and the classical Mahavihara understanding of the Dhamma. Within these forums the Pali Tipitaka and its commentaries are for discussion purposes treated as authoritative. These forums are for the benefit of those members who wish to develop a deeper understanding of these texts and are not for the challenging of the Abhidhamma and/or Theravada commentarial literature.

Posts should also include support from a reference, a citation (Tipitaka, commentarial, or from a later work from an author representative of the Classical point-of-view).

Posts that contain personal opinions and conjecture, points of view arrived at from meditative experiences, conversations with devas, blind faith in the supreme veracity of one's own teacher's point of view etc. are all regarded as off-topic, and as such, will be subject to moderator review and/or removal.


Any further posts which do not comply with the guidelines of this forum will be subject to moderator attention.
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Re: Mode of instruction

Postby Jechbi » Sun Aug 30, 2009 4:15 pm

Hi Gull,

Gullible wrote:Has anyone else had this experience? How did you deal with it?

Since the question you ask regards personal experience, maybe you'd like to create a companion thread in the personal experiences forum?

In answer to your question, I haven't had that experience. But I've only been at it for a relatively short period. (I don't think it's possible to answer your question and still keep strictly to the guidelines.)

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