Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

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Re: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Dec 04, 2009 8:38 am

Just a bit about the above "review."

Take this line from the above "review" -This doctrine is also called by the Greeks Apophasis. - and google it so:
"This doctrine is also called by the Greeks Apophasis." Amazon and you can see that Ken Wheeler aka Denise Anderson uses much of the above review as a boilerplate response to those books that do not promote a self view in Buddhism.

http://www.google.com/search?q=site:ama ... n&filter=0
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: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby Dan74 » Fri Dec 04, 2009 9:44 am

Perhaps what can be say fairly unequivocally is that it is unwise to be attached to a self or a view of a self. Just as it is unwise to be attached to a view of no-self.

?

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Re: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby Ben » Fri Dec 04, 2009 10:56 am

Hi Mike
mikenz66 wrote:For further amusement you can read this Amazon Forum:

Denise Anderson says:
FreeThinker says:
Kenneth,

Please share with us your bountiful knowledge and explain the Theravada concept of the Unconditioned, including how it is seen from a traditional Theravada point of view as being part of the material/5 skandas.

A: Theravada is utterly materialistic by its OWN accord....evidences for same? ......
Bhikkhu Bodhi (Theravada's ignorant mouthpiece)


I thought this writer seemed to ring some bells...

Bhikkhu Bodhi, Mara’s right-hand whore
--http://www.attan.com/bb.html

kind regards

Ben
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Re: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby Sanghamitta » Fri Dec 04, 2009 11:00 am

Dan74 wrote:Perhaps what can be say fairly unequivocally is that it is unwise to be attached to a self or a view of a self. Just as it is unwise to be attached to a view of no-self.

?

_/|\_

Call me Simple Simone :smile:

But to me No Atta = Buddhism.
No Self = Vedanta.
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

Bhikku Bodhi.
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Re: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby Dan74 » Fri Dec 04, 2009 11:12 am

Hi Simone! :smile:

Well, Simon says, this Buddhism won't be much good to you if you merely attach to this formula, as a view. In fact, I'd say it would get in the way.

Investigate, where is this self? Just believe, post bizarre reviews, blather on about it, etc... This is what you call papanca, believe, and attachment to views, which is an obstacle to practice.

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Re: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby Sanghamitta » Fri Dec 04, 2009 12:15 pm

I think that the Buddhadhamma is actually very good for me thank you Dan74. : It is not views per se that obscure us, it is wrong views. Another difference possibly between the Theravada and views that derive from the Vedanta.
Papanca according to many Theravadin commentators is not simply "views". It is a proliferation of views which are not to be found in the descriptions of being as outlined in the Pali Canon. Views which reinforce the sense of a permanent self, and which tend to an interpretation that suggests the existence of an atta.

But if I ever feel the need to explore a rather strange Zen/Theravada hybrid pov I am sure I will know where to turn.
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

Bhikku Bodhi.
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Re: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby jcsuperstar » Fri Dec 04, 2009 2:47 pm

Ben wrote:Hi Mike
mikenz66 wrote:For further amusement you can read this Amazon Forum:

Denise Anderson says:
FreeThinker says:
Kenneth,

Please share with us your bountiful knowledge and explain the Theravada concept of the Unconditioned, including how it is seen from a traditional Theravada point of view as being part of the material/5 skandas.

A: Theravada is utterly materialistic by its OWN accord....evidences for same? ......
Bhikkhu Bodhi (Theravada's ignorant mouthpiece)


I thought this writer seemed to ring some bells...

Bhikkhu Bodhi, Mara’s right-hand whore
--http://www.attan.com/bb.html

kind regards

Ben


let's not forget who we're talking about here
*The webmaster of attan.com is an expert in Pali and translates same, in Buddhist doctrine, and has poured through the earliest existing doctrine of Buddhism, day after day, year after year, over and over again, lectures, and writes on same.
Admittedly egotistically, the webmaster of attan.com claims outright that there are none alive who have a more extensive knowledge of earliest Buddhist doctrine and its philosophy, than himself.
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat
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Re: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby Sanghamitta » Fri Dec 04, 2009 4:18 pm

He might of course be correct about having an extensive knowledge of Buddhist philosophy, proof positive that it doesnt mean that much unless it underpins Buddhist practice, particularly meditation practice. Then it is highly valuable.
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

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Re: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby acinteyyo » Fri Dec 04, 2009 6:20 pm

tiltbillings wrote:If there were a permanent, unchanging self/soul that is an agent and that we ultimately are, how would it relate to that which changes without changing? If it acts, it changes. If it feels it changes. If it goes from ignorance to knowledge it changes. It goes from delusion to awakening it changes. In other words, this supposed truly true unchanging self/soul that we supposedly truly are begins looking like the khandhas - it changes.

Hi tilt,

according to the Buddhas teachings, if there were a permanent, unchanging self/soul it wouldn't relate to anything.
I posted something here, last passage. Maybe someone finds it interessting.

best wishes, acinteyyo
Pubbe cāhaṃ bhikkhave, etarahi ca dukkhañceva paññāpemi, dukkhassa ca nirodhaṃ. (M.22)
Both formerly, monks, and now, it is just suffering that I make known and the ending of suffering.

:anjali:
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Re: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Dec 04, 2009 6:52 pm

Sanghamitta wrote:He might of course be correct about having an extensive knowledge of Buddhist philosophy,

He has a Pali dictionary but no real knowledge of the language or much else related to the Pali suttas.
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: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Dec 04, 2009 6:54 pm

acinteyyo wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:If there were a permanent, unchanging self/soul that is an agent and that we ultimately are, how would it relate to that which changes without changing? If it acts, it changes. If it feels it changes. If it goes from ignorance to knowledge it changes. It goes from delusion to awakening it changes. In other words, this supposed truly true unchanging self/soul that we supposedly truly are begins looking like the khandhas - it changes.

Hi tilt,

according to the Buddhas teachings, if there were a permanent, unchanging self/soul it wouldn't relate to anything.
I posted something here, last passage. Maybe someone finds it interessting.

best wishes, acinteyyo

Thanks. It is to the point.
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: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby Sanghamitta » Fri Dec 04, 2009 7:08 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
Sanghamitta wrote:He might of course be correct about having an extensive knowledge of Buddhist philosophy,

He has a Pali dictionary but no real knowledge of the language or much else related to the Pali suttas.



I was being overly kind. Giving him the benefit of the doubt etc. :smile:
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

Bhikku Bodhi.
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Re: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby Dan74 » Sat Dec 05, 2009 1:34 am

Sanghamitta wrote:I think that the Buddhadhamma is actually very good for me thank you Dan74. : It is not views per se that obscure us, it is wrong views. Another difference possibly between the Theravada and views that derive from the Vedanta.
Papanca according to many Theravadin commentators is not simply "views". It is a proliferation of views which are not to be found in the descriptions of being as outlined in the Pali Canon. Views which reinforce the sense of a permanent self, and which tend to an interpretation that suggests the existence of an atta.

But if I ever feel the need to explore a rather strange Zen/Theravada hybrid pov I am sure I will know where to turn.


I agree, it is not views that obstruct practice, but attachment to views. Views are like signposts. We can read the sign and go, or we can linger and marvel at the sign, try to protect it, etc.

Best we read the sign, bow in thanks and go!

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Re: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby Paññāsikhara » Sat Dec 05, 2009 2:30 am

Some great posts from Tilt, above.
(Hope those references were useful to you.)
My recently moved Blog, containing some of my writings on the Buddha Dhamma, as well as a number of translations from classical Buddhist texts and modern authors, liturgy, etc.: Huifeng's Prajnacara Blog.
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Re: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Dec 05, 2009 2:31 am

Paññāsikhara wrote:<<reaches over to dissertation, search "twenty" ... flip ... flip ... copy, paste >>


Thanks. It is much appreciated.
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: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby Cafael Dust » Sun Dec 06, 2009 4:46 pm

I always thought this was simpler than people often make it seem.

Other philosophies say there is someone behind experience, experiencing, for example, in western philosophy, homunculus theory. Buddhism says there is just experience, so you could say experience is self.

But experience doesn't fit any traditional definition of self or even any traditional definition of a concept or compounded object - it lacks an unchanging nature. There's nothing you can say about it to describe it - you can describe an experience using terms relative to other experiences, but you cannot describe experience itself, which is why it is unconditioned. When the lack of an experiencer is realised, attention given to attempts to improve the condition of the experiencer fades and all attention is given to experience. Life becomes luminous, blissful and so on.

Of course, experience always was all there was, but illusorily in a kind of feedback loop or cycle of samsara. This is where words, or at least my words fail in explaining. Where did the arrow come from? Can't be answered and a mistake to try, I guess.

Supposing the idea of an unchanging nature is a category mistake in the first place. The words 'unchanging nature' are just words, they lack an objective correlate.

Oh dear, have I made this simpler, as I claim at the beginning, or more complex?
Not twice, not three times, not once,
the wheel is turning.
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Re: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby seanpdx » Tue Dec 08, 2009 10:50 pm

Out of curiosity, what was the established, brahminic understanding of atman/atta at the time of the Buddha?
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Re: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby retrofuturist » Tue Dec 08, 2009 11:09 pm

Greetings Sean,

seanpdx wrote:Out of curiosity, what was the established, brahminic understanding of atman/atta at the time of the Buddha?


It seems there were about 62 different ones!

DN 1: Brahmajala Sutta
http://web.ukonline.co.uk/theravada/brahma1.htm

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: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby seanpdx » Wed Dec 09, 2009 1:09 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Sean,

seanpdx wrote:Out of curiosity, what was the established, brahminic understanding of atman/atta at the time of the Buddha?


It seems there were about 62 different ones!

DN 1: Brahmajala Sutta
http://web.ukonline.co.uk/theravada/brahma1.htm

Metta,
Retro. :)


Ok... but any vedic or upanisadic references?
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Re: Challenging the traditional view of Anatta

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Dec 09, 2009 1:16 am

Greetings Sean,

seanpdx wrote:Ok... but any vedic or upanisadic references?


I don't know, I'm probably not the one to ask.

I do know however that Bhikkhu Bodhi has translated this text along with commentary and the whole thing exceeds 300 pages (IIRC) so there may be something in there.

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


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)
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