If a stream-winner...

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism

Re: If a stream-winner...

Postby salmon » Wed May 05, 2010 3:44 am

:goodpost: retro...

I think that should address quite a few of Virgo's points too?

I would come right out here and say that I have encountered ariyans and have learnt much about them and from their behaviour, but would you believe my claim? ;)

OT: A good read about a what a lay ariyan might appear to be like would be the autobiography of Dipa Ma. She's a legendary teacher of the modern day world. :reading:
~ swimming upstream is tough work! ~
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Re: If a stream-winner...

Postby Wind » Wed May 05, 2010 4:10 am

The Buddha says the stream-winner may declare:

'Hell is ended; animal wombs are ended; the state of the hungry shades is ended; states of deprivation, destitution, the bad bourns are ended! I am a stream-winner, steadfast, never again destined for states of woe, headed for self-awakening!'

That statement is from this sutta:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
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Re: If a stream-winner...

Postby Kenshou » Wed May 05, 2010 4:20 am

I'd believe that you believe what you claim. :tongue:

I think that this has all been really over-romanticized. I don't believe that the requirements for stream-entry are anything that a diligent practitioner should not be able to achieve, and I am implying that I think such people exist. If I reach the end of this life without achieving that or more, then I'd be disappointed with myself.
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Re: If a stream-winner...

Postby mikenz66 » Wed May 05, 2010 5:23 am

Hi Retro,
retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Bodom,

bodom wrote:I dont want the idea in my head I can break the precepts and still achieve stream entry.


Fair enough, but on the flipside, its also worth paying heed of the caveat provided in that aforementioned reference (http://nanavira.xtreemhost.com/index.ph ... &Itemid=50 )

Nanavira Thera wrote:Why am I glad that you are shocked to learn that a sekha bhikkhu can be fond of talk (and worse)? Because it gives me the opportunity of insisting that unless you bring the sekha down to earth the Buddha's Teaching can never be a reality for you. So long as you are content to put the sotāpanna on a pedestal well out of reach, it can never possibly occur to you that it is your duty to become sotāpanna yourself (or at least to make the attempt) here and now in this very life; for you will simply take it as axiomatic that you cannot succeed.

Interesting. Similar view to Daniel Ingram... :juggling:
viewtopic.php?f=16&t=3717

Mike
Last edited by mikenz66 on Wed May 05, 2010 5:30 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: If a stream-winner...

Postby retrofuturist » Wed May 05, 2010 5:28 am

Greetings Mike,

mikenz66 wrote:Interesting. Similar view to Daniel Ingram... :juggling:
http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=3717

To the extent of saying that nobility is possible in this day and age, yes.

To the extent of redefining the classifications of nobility so that they become inconsistent with the sutta, no, not at all.

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: If a stream-winner...

Postby Zhalmed Pawo » Sat May 08, 2010 4:25 am

bodom wrote:Licchavi Sutta: To the Licchavi
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

On one occasion the Blessed One was staying near Vesali in the Gabled Hall in the Great Forest. Then Nandaka, the chief minister of the Licchavis, went to the Blessed One and on arrival, having bowed down to him, sat to one side. As he was sitting there the Blessed One said to him: "Nandaka, a disciple of the noble ones endowed with four qualities is a stream-winner, steadfast, never again destined for states of woe, headed for self-awakening. Which four?

"There is the case where the disciple of the noble ones is endowed with verified confidence in the Awakened One...in the Dhamma...in the Sangha.

"He/she is endowed with virtues that are appealing to the noble ones: untorn, unbroken, unspotted, unsplattered, liberating, praised by the wise, untarnished, leading to concentration.



Thank you.

It seems that anyone who has 'real faith' in the Three Jewels and is 'truly ethical', has attained the path of stream-entry, and is an Ariyan. No need to get rid of the first three fetters, no need to realize anatta or sunnata, no need to purify mind from attachement and hatred, for this attainment - they come later on the Magga. Also no need for vipassana at this stage.

But what does the expression "verified confidence" mean? Is it translation of saddha, or something else, like that understanding or accepting the idea of kamma well enough so as to avoid negative kamma.

Does this mean that faith induced ethics equals the first stage of Nobility?
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Re: If a stream-winner...

Postby Reductor » Sat May 08, 2010 4:43 am

Zhalmed Pawo wrote:But what does the expression "verified confidence" mean?


Before entry to the path, your views reflect the Dhamma. After sotapanna it is the Dhamma that reflects your views. Does that make sense? The actual confidence is like a man you're confident in telling you that a certain city is clean and bright. You trust him and feel no doubt. Because of that trust you visit the city, and are completely struck by how clean and bright it actually is. Although you didn't mistrust your friend, you certainly have a very good reason now to say 'yes, he was right, it is very clean and bright.'
Michael

The thoughts I've expressed in the above post are carefully considered and offered in good faith.

And friendliness towards the world is happiness for him who is forbearing with living beings. -- Ud. 2:1
To his own ruin the fool gains knowledge, for it cleaves his head and destroys his innate goodness. -- Dhp 72

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Re: If a stream-winner...

Postby retrofuturist » Sat May 08, 2010 7:04 am

Greetings,

Zhalmed Pawo wrote:But what does the expression "verified confidence" mean? Is it translation of saddha, or something else, like that understanding or accepting the idea of kamma well enough so as to avoid negative kamma.


I take it to mean that the "house-builder" has been discovered, and accordingly the path to cessation can be clearly seen.

It does not however, mean that all ten fetters have been removed, only that at least the first three have, but having seen the path, it is travelled until the destination is reached.

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: If a stream-winner...

Postby Zhalmed Pawo » Sat May 08, 2010 10:41 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings,

Zhalmed Pawo wrote:But what does the expression "verified confidence" mean? Is it translation of saddha, or something else, like that understanding or accepting the idea of kamma well enough so as to avoid negative kamma.


I take it to mean that the "house-builder" has been discovered, and accordingly the path to cessation can be clearly seen.

It does not however, mean that all ten fetters have been removed, only that at least the first three have, but having seen the path, it is travelled until the destination is reached.


Still, this is not clear to me.

What is the difference between an Ariyan person on the path of stream-entry and an Ariyan person having the fruit of stream-entry?
And what is the difference, if any, between faith-follower (saddhanusari) Ariyan and truth-follower (dhammanusari) Ariyan at this initial stage?

I am under the impression that having the fruit of stream-entry would entail that one has eradicated the three lowest fetters, or attained the Dhamma-cakkhu, the Dhamma-eye, but that having attained the path of stream-entry would not. If both types would have same attainments as per the fetters, they would be just a single category. There must be a difference somewhere.

Somehow it seems that faith-follower would be 'a weaker case' of truth-follower. The first merely has reasoned faith, as per the Licchavi Sutta, but the latter actually sees himself, like Kondanna, the first Ariyan disciple of the Buddha. Having seen the Dhamma, one has Dhamma-eye, or the house-builder is found, and thereby the three lower fetters destroyed.

Or what? :reading:
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Re: If a stream-winner...

Postby rowyourboat » Sat May 08, 2010 11:25 am

I have been puzzling about the precept issue of stream entrants for years.The suttas suggest that it is impossible to for a stream entrant to perform the really terrible deeds in retro's post above. However the description of the usual five precepts does says 'unbroken, unsplattered' etc. This method of describing suggests to me (I wonder if it is a particularly asian way of describing something) that his conduct in terms of precepts is 'not extremely bad'. However this should not be an excuse to break them. It is notable that there are no examples of stream entrants breaking precepts either (sarkani became a stream entrant at the point of death -due to drinking?!- and was a faith follower before this destined to become a stream entrant in his current life).

Shame and fear of wrong doing becomes an important factor in achieving non-returner stages according to some suttas. I think there is something about linking negative core beliefs ('I am a bad person') with acts based on craving,aversion and delusion ('..if I do') ie- developing hiri-otappa (shame and fear of wrongdoing).

The arahanth is incapable of breaking the five precepts according to the suttas (sorry no quotes available to hand).

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Re: If a stream-winner...

Postby rowyourboat » Sat May 08, 2010 11:30 am

avecca-pasadh- translated into verified confidence, also unshakeable confidence/faith call it what you will (but not blind faith)- after seeing from their own experience that there is an escape from the samsara-the rounds of existence. it would be like a man in a desert being told the way to an oasis- having gone there and quenching his thirst has confidence/faith/delight in the man who gave him instructions on how to get there.

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Re: If a stream-winner...

Postby retrofuturist » Sat May 08, 2010 12:43 pm

Greetings,

Zhalmed Pawo wrote:What is the difference between an Ariyan person on the path of stream-entry and an Ariyan person having the fruit of stream-entry?
And what is the difference, if any, between faith-follower (saddhanusari) Ariyan and truth-follower (dhammanusari) Ariyan at this initial stage?


I thought I had already posted the following, but I appear to be mistaken. Have a look at this and http://nanavira.xtreemhost.com/index.ph ... &Itemid=51 - hopefully it will address your questions.

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: If a stream-winner...

Postby Zom » Sat May 08, 2010 1:19 pm

Some more for this topic -)
A fragment from my Q-and-A session (June 2009) with Ajahn from Thai Dhammayut Nikaya. He is said to have supernatural powers and considered by some thai lay people as arahant; don't remember what is his name ;-/):

Q: Some people say that when person becomes a sotapanna, he sees and experiences nibbana for a short moment, but after that (insight) he doesn’t see it. What can you say about that?

A: This is not nibbana. This is only emptiness. Putthujana understands emptiness on one level. Sotapanna – on another. Sakadagami – on more deep level. Anagami – on yet more deep level.

Q: But this is not yet nibbana, is it?

A: Yes.

Q: So his knowledge is not the knowledge of arahant, even a little bit?

A: Yes. Sotapanna, Sakadagami, Anagami – they don’t have this yet. Nibbana is not emptiness. Nibbana is when you let go of body and mind. Emptiness is still body and mind.

Q: It is said that Sotapanna will be born 6 more times (7 if we count this life). Also it is said that he destroys a fetter called “doubt” (about Buddha-Dhamma-Sangha). That means that he can’t have doubts about that. But when he is born in the next life, how it happens that he has no doubts? Does he have some memories about this attainment? Or is this some kind of “inexplicable blind faith”? It is normal for any person to have doubts when he first hears about Buddha teachings in his life, because he has no past-life memory and he has no experience yet.

A: He is born and he has khandhas, and he will have doubts. Because this is natural. But his mind has already changed.

Q: So will he have doubts but not so strong enough to lead him off the path?

A: Yes, he can’t follow another path. He still has doubts in his khandhas, because he has sannya and sankhara. But he has no doubts in his mind. Mind is on the path to nibbana.

Q: Do I understand correctly that deep inside his mind he has no doubts, but on the level of ideas he has doubts?

A: His mind is developed up to the higher level. He sees Dhamma. Those who see Dhamma, see Buddha. This is the level of Sotapanna.

Q: So these doubts are on the level of ideas and intellect, but not on a more deep level, am I right?

A: Yes. Khandhas of Putthujana (ordinary person) and Sotapanna are the same. But their minds differ.

Q: Is it possible that a person who hears Dhamma and understands it on a deep level becomes a Sotapanna without knowing it, while Buddha sees that and may say that now he is a Sotapanna?

A: Yes, sometimes this can happen like that. Sometimes people don’t know how to name it. They have no name for it.

Q: Some say that there are 4 types of Ariyas. Others say about 8 types – that sotapattimagga and sotapattiphala are different persons, not a single one. What is your point of view?

A: There are 8 types. Sotapattimagga and Sotapatiphala.

Q: So, for example, Sotapatimagga can be like that for months or years, and then he realizes the truth and becomes Sotapattiphala. Am I right?

A: Yes, you understand correctly. Path (for example) can take up a month or a year. And then you get phala. You understand everything correctly.
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Re: If a stream-winner...

Postby retrofuturist » Sat May 08, 2010 1:23 pm

Greetings Zom,

Interesting - thanks for sharing.

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: If a stream-winner...

Postby Zhalmed Pawo » Sat May 08, 2010 9:39 pm

retrofuturist wrote:
Zhalmed Pawo wrote:What is the difference between an Ariyan person on the path of stream-entry and an Ariyan person having the fruit of stream-entry?
And what is the difference, if any, between faith-follower (saddhanusari) Ariyan and truth-follower (dhammanusari) Ariyan at this initial stage?


I thought I had already posted the following, but I appear to be mistaken. Have a look at this and http://nanavira.xtreemhost.com/index.ph ... &Itemid=51 - hopefully it will address your questions.


Thank you Retro (again), but sadly this does not answer my questions. You indeed had posted that link before, about two pages before, but it made as little sense to me then as it does now. Sorry. Maybe I'm just daft, or maybe the text simply does not answer my questions. Who knows... :cry:

To put this briefly: As there are eight types of Ariyans, the four pairs, one in the path and one having the fruit, I am asking that what exactly is the difference between the Ariyans who are (1) on the path, and (2) having the fruit, of stream entry? This is, after all, a very simple question, and surely there are Suttas that can inform us. This cannot be that difficult, can it? :tongue: (Yes yes, I know this is difficult, for otherwise I wouldn't have to ask these things... :mrgreen: )

Considering that the stream-entrants just might be the statistical majority of all the Ariyans on this planet, one would suppose that there might be quite a lot of material about these initial stages. Material based on the Suttas, that is.
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Re: If a stream-winner...

Postby retrofuturist » Sat May 08, 2010 11:37 pm

Greetings ZP,

From the link I provided, it seems that samādhi is required to complete fruition...

Now, one who has this paññā can, simply by developing his paññā, at the same time develop his samādhi; and when these have reached sufficient strength (more is required for each successive stage) the attainment of fruition takes place. Although the development of paññā is, of necessity, partly discursive (or intellectual), in the actual attainment of fruition (sotāpatti, etc.) the mind becomes steady (since samādhi has been automatically developed together with paññā, and the two now combine as equal partners—see M. 149: iii,289)—and there is direct intuition instead of discursive thinking. So in all attainment of fruition there is samādhi. But it is also possible for the ariyapuggala to develop his samādhi separately by means of ānāpānasati etc., and this is, in fact, the pleasantest way of advancing (for some people, however, it is difficult, and they have to grind away at vipassanā practice—i.e. development of paññā). In this way, a far greater degree of samādhi is developed than is actually necessary for the attainment of fruition


whereas path works like this...

SN 25.1: Cakkhu Sutta
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

At Savatthi. "Monks, the eye is inconstant, changeable, alterable. The ear... The nose... The tongue... The body... The mind is inconstant, changeable, alterable.

"One who has conviction & belief that these phenomena are this way is called a faith-follower: one who has entered the orderliness of rightness, entered the plane of people of integrity, transcended the plane of the run-of-the-mill. He is incapable of doing any deed by which he might be reborn in hell, in the animal womb, or in the realm of hungry shades. He is incapable of passing away until he has realized the fruit of stream-entry.

"One who, after pondering with a modicum of discernment, has accepted that these phenomena are this way is called a Dhamma-follower: one who has entered the orderliness of rightness, entered the plane of people of integrity, transcended the plane of the run-of-the-mill. He is incapable of doing any deed by which he might be reborn in hell, in the animal womb, or in the realm of hungry shades. He is incapable of passing away until he has realized the fruit of stream-entry.

"One who knows and sees that these phenomena are this way is called a stream-enterer, steadfast, never again destined for states of woe, headed for self-awakening."

You would expect than that the gap between path and fruition would be less for the kāyasakkhi (body-witness) than the Dhamma-follower and Faith-follower... but in my mind this accounts for some of the reason why, in the suttas, people attained stream entry so quickly... i.e. many were already reasonably accomplished in samadhi (albeit wrong samadhi) and once they attained right view courtesy of the Dhamma, the fruition would have been comparatively easy.

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: If a stream-winner...

Postby Sambodhi in Oz » Fri Jun 11, 2010 6:02 pm

The sotapati maggatha person and sotapati falath person while being two are essentially one since a person is a sotapati maggatha person only for split of second or something like that just when he relaises the fruitation.

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Re: If a stream-winner...

Postby Alex123 » Fri Jun 11, 2010 7:42 pm

retrofuturist wrote:
I venture to think that if you actually read through the whole of the Vinaya and the Suttas you would be aghast at some of the things a real live sotāpanna is capable of. As a bhikkhu he is capable of suicide (but so also is an arahat—I have already quoted examples); he is capable of breaking all the lesser Vinaya rules (M. 48: i,323-5; A. III,85: i,231-2); he is capable of disrobing on account of sensual desires (e.g. the Ven. Citta Hatthisāriputta—A. VI,60: iii,392-9); he is capable (to some degree) of anger, ill-will, jealousy, stinginess, deceit, craftiness, shamelessness, and brazenness (A. II,16: i,96). As a layman he is capable (contrary to popular belief) of breaking any or all of the five precepts (though as soon as he has done so he recognizes his fault and repairs the breach, unlike the puthujjana who is content to leave the precepts broken).

There are some things in the Suttas that have so much shocked the Commentator that he has been obliged to provide patently false explanations (I am thinking in particular of the arahat's suicide in M. 144: iii,266 and in the Salāyatana Samy. 87: iv,55-60 and of a drunken sotāpanna in the Sotāpatti Samy. 24: v,375-7).


Unfortunately I don't know how to convert from PTS references to the other increasingly common format, so post this mainly in the hope that someone who can, is able to provide references to the above suttas.

Metta,
Retro. :)




Some finds:

AN I,95
Dveme, bhikkhave, dhammā sekhassa bhikkhuno parihānāya saṃvattanti. Katame dve? Kodho ca upanāho ca… makkho ca paḷāso ca… issā ca macchariyañca… māyā ca sāṭheyyañca… ahirikañca anottappañca. Ime kho, bhikkhave, dve dhammā sekhassa bhikkhuno parihānāya saṃvattanti’’.

Monks, these pairs of qualities in a monk who is a learner conduce to his falling away. What two?
Anger and malevolence, hypocrisy and spite, envy and grudging, deceit and trechery, immodesty and unscrupulousness.



Bhikkhus, what is that unique characteristic of one come to righteousness or view? When he does any wrong, it becomes manifest to him, and he instantly goes to the Teacher or a wise co-associate in the holy life and declares and makes it manifest and makes amends for future restrain,
http://metta.lk/tipitaka/2Sutta-Pitaka/ ... ta-e1.html


So one with right view CAN do wrong. But of course it is without wrong view. As to MN115: it rejects that a sekha can commit 5 heineous crimes. It doesn't reject all wrongdoing such as "Anger and malevolence, hypocrisy and spite, envy and grudging, deceit and trechery, immodesty and unscrupulousness." that a sekha monk can do and go to ruin (disrobe?) on account of such actions, parihānāya saṃvattanti.

In AN 6:60, one can achieve signless concentration (animittaṃ cetosamādhi) and still disrobe on account of sensual pleasures.

Question: Who can reach animittaṃ cetosamādhi? Is it the same as signless liberation?


In VsM XXI,71 it says that
And here the signless liberation should be understood as the noble path that has occurred by making nibbana its object through the signless
aspect. For that path is signless owing to the signless element having arisen, and it is a liberation owing to deliverance from defilements.33


33. One who is pursuing insight by discerning formations according to their sign by means of the contemplation of impermanence and resolves according to
the signless aspect thus, "Where this sign of formations is entirely non-existent, that is, the signless nibbana" joins insight leading to emergence with the path. Then the path realizes nibbana for him as signless. The signless aspect of nibbana is not created by the path or by insight; on the contrary, it is the establishment of the individual essence of nibbana, and the path is called signless because it has that as its object.
I was not; I was; I am not; I do not care."
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Re: If a stream-winner...

Postby dhamma follower » Sat Jun 12, 2010 5:09 am

Dear all,

There's booklet titled "what is Buddhism" in wich Ajhan Naeb, a lay woman who taught meditation at Boonkanjanaram center in Pattaya in the 60s to 80s. In one interview in this book, she recalls vividly her four months of practice before attaining Nibbana for the first time, then a second time afterwards. It is very inspiring and informative. Obviously, there's such a certainty about the experience that we understand why doubt is erased. Unfortunately, I have not been able to find an internet version of it. They told me the booklets can be bought in some bookshops in Bangkok, but I don't know which one exactly. The best would be go to practice there and get the book, or better still, "get" Nibbana so you don't need the book anymore :smile:

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Re: If a stream-winner...

Postby mikenz66 » Sat Jun 12, 2010 6:07 am

Thanks DF,

Ajahn Naeb is in Jack Kornfield's book on "Living Buddhist Masters", which I think has changed name as many are no longer living. You can read the section here:
http://books.google.co.nz/books?id=8InE ... eb&f=false

Khun Sujin (some followers of whom can be found on the yahoo group http://groups.yahoo.com/group/dhammastudygroup/) was one of her students.

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