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The Not-Self Strategy - Dhamma Wheel

The Not-Self Strategy

A forum for beginners and members of other Buddhist traditions to ask questions about Theravāda (The Way of the Elders). Responses require moderator approval before they are visible.
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Ngawang Drolma.
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The Not-Self Strategy

Postby Ngawang Drolma. » Mon Jan 19, 2009 8:06 am



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retrofuturist
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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Jan 19, 2009 8:40 am

"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby Cittasanto » Mon Jan 19, 2009 8:53 am

without knowing who the Buddha was talking to but I suspect I know who, but cant think where it is to be certain!
the buddha has answered allot of his questions and the asker had not fully understood, the Asker was not ready for the answer so the Buddha remained quiet, have a look at 5 ways to answer questions according to the buddha


He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.

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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby Individual » Mon Jan 19, 2009 3:03 pm

The best things in life aren't things.


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bodom
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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby bodom » Mon Jan 19, 2009 7:21 pm

No-self or Not-self?
by
Thanissaro Bhikkhu

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... self2.html

Some writers try to qualify the no-self interpretation by saying that the Buddha denied the existence of an eternal self or a separate self, but this is to give an analytical answer to a question that the Buddha showed should be put aside. Others try to draw inferences from the few statements in the discourse that seem to imply that there is no self, but it seems safe to assume that if one forces those statements to give an answer to a question that should be put aside, one is drawing inferences where they shouldn't be drawn.

So, instead of answering "no" to the question of whether or not there is a self — interconnected or separate, eternal or not — the Buddha felt that the question was misguided to begin with. Why? No matter how you define the line between "self" and "other," the notion of self involves an element of self-identification and clinging, and thus suffering and stress. This holds as much for an interconnected self, which recognizes no "other," as it does for a separate self. If one identifies with all of nature, one is pained by every felled tree. It also holds for an entirely "other" universe, in which the sense of alienation and futility would become so debilitating as to make the quest for happiness — one's own or that of others — impossible. For these reasons, the Buddha advised paying no attention to such questions as "Do I exist?" or "Don't I exist?" for however you answer them, they lead to suffering and stress.

To avoid the suffering implicit in questions of "self" and "other," he offered an alternative way of dividing up experience: the four Noble Truths of stress, its cause, its cessation, and the path to its cessation. Rather than viewing these truths as pertaining to self or other, he said, one should recognize them simply for what they are, in and of themselves, as they are directly experienced, and then perform the duty appropriate to each. Stress should be comprehended, its cause abandoned, its cessation realized, and the path to its cessation developed. These duties form the context in which the anatta doctrine is best understood. If you develop the path of virtue, concentration, and discernment to a state of calm well-being and use that calm state to look at experience in terms of the Noble Truths, the questions that occur to the mind are not "Is there a self? What is my self?" but rather "Am I suffering stress because I'm holding onto this particular phenomenon? Is it really me, myself, or mine? If it's stressful but not really me or mine, why hold on?" These last questions merit straightforward answers, as they then help you to comprehend stress and to chip away at the attachment and clinging — the residual sense of self-identification — that cause it, until ultimately all traces of self-identification are gone and all that's left is limitless freedom.

:namaste:
To study is to know the texts,
To practice is to know your defilements,
To attain the goal is to know and let go.

- Ajahn Lee Dhammadharo


With mindfulness immersed in the body
well established, restrained
with regard to the six media of contact,
always centered, the monk
can know Unbinding for himself.

- Ud 3.5


https://www.dhammatalks.org/index.html
http://www.ajahnchah.org/

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Ngawang Drolma.
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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby Ngawang Drolma. » Mon Jan 19, 2009 8:16 pm



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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby mikenz66 » Mon Jan 19, 2009 8:38 pm

Good Summary BBB,

I agree that using the "strategy" argument and focussing attention on "seeing through the Self in the aggregates", rather than trying to debate the subject, is probably the most productive use of time. What concerns me is when some argue: "The Buddha didn't specifically say there was no self anywhere, so when I'm done I'll find the 'Real Self', which is like ...". I've heard this sort of argument from some "Insight Meditation Teachers".

Metta
Mike

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Ngawang Drolma.
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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby Ngawang Drolma. » Mon Jan 19, 2009 8:44 pm



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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby Ngawang Drolma. » Mon Jan 19, 2009 10:03 pm

I guess another way to ask this is, is there a way to understand and discuss emptiness beyond dependent origination and off of the meditation cushion?

/\


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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Jan 19, 2009 10:44 pm

"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

Individual
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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby Individual » Tue Jan 20, 2009 2:37 pm

The best things in life aren't things.


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Jason
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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby Jason » Tue Jan 20, 2009 3:48 pm

"Sabbe dhamma nalam abhinivesaya" ().

(Buddhist-related blog)
(non-Buddhist related blog)

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Ngawang Drolma.
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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby Ngawang Drolma. » Tue Jan 20, 2009 7:38 pm

Wow Jason, thank you so much /\ I've read your words very carefully and they provide wonderful context and elaboration.

Best,
Drolma


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Jechbi
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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby Jechbi » Sun Aug 23, 2009 1:24 am

-- bump --

:reading:

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Macavity
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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby Macavity » Sun Aug 23, 2009 2:25 am


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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby Jechbi » Sun Aug 23, 2009 3:45 am


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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby Macavity » Sun Aug 23, 2009 5:01 am


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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby Jechbi » Sun Aug 23, 2009 3:23 pm


flyingOx
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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby flyingOx » Sun Aug 23, 2009 8:32 pm

I’m sorry for not debating on Buddhist writings concerning the self, but scientifically speaking, the self is nothing more than a forty hertz frequency evolved from the back propagated cognitive loop-like activities that collects residually remaining energies from the excess that is built up and concurrently flowing into the singular, conscious awareness through sensory phenomena during wakefulness and REM sleep. If Gautama Buddha said anything along those lines, then I would have to say that I whole-heartedly concur. ;)
One is encouraged to seek the truth, but be warned if you ever find it, you will be treated as blasphemous.

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Re: The Not-Self Strategy

Postby clw_uk » Mon Aug 24, 2009 1:58 am

Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken


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