On Verification

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
budo
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Re: On Verification

Post by budo »

Bundokji wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 8:52 pm

In order to agree on what constitutes adhamma, we should agree on what constitutes dhamma.
I don't even need to read the rest of your response, because we can end the debate right here and save time. The Buddha defined what constitutes dhamma:

Dhamma: dialogues, narratives of mixed prose and verse, explanations, verses, spontaneous exclamations, quotations, birth stories, amazing events, question & answer sessions."
"Then there is the case where a monk studies the Dhamma: dialogues, narratives of mixed prose and verse, explanations, verses, spontaneous exclamations, quotations, birth stories, amazing events, question & answer sessions.
Whether you believe in the Buddha or not, or what the Buddha is saying is true or not, proveable or not, if the suttas are authentic or not, if the translations are authentic or not, are all:

irrelevant and another topic all together..
Bundokji
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Re: On Verification

Post by Bundokji »

budo wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 8:59 pm Whether you believe in the Buddha or not, or what the Buddha is saying is true or not, proveable or not, if the suttas are authentic or not, if the translations are authentic or not, are all:

irrelevant and another topic all together..
Indeed. We can believe in whatever we want, but in the public sphere, supporting/justifying our conclusions with evidence is often required. If someone told you that they believe in Einstien's theory, and they use it to discredit other ways of explaining things, and when you ask them why, they simply say because Einstein said so, you would not take them seriously. or would you?
And the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus, saying: "Behold now, bhikkhus, I exhort you: All compounded things are subject to vanish. Strive with earnestness!"

This was the last word of the Tathagata.
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Manopubbangama
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Re: On Verification

Post by Manopubbangama »

SDC wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 4:16 pm
Manopubbangama wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 3:43 pm Your guy, Harold Musson, was far more agile in slipping his ideas into his writings, and it actually takes a bit more work to tease out the fact that his ideas don't fit into the puzzle
He is pretty forthcoming that he does not mean to fit the puzzle.
I think his ideas are good to the extent that it leads people to dhamma and energizes them to study more. I have no issue with the man, but even before we address his ideas, we have to take a look at the implications: that for 2600 years straight, going back to the time of the Buddha, all of the Ariya got everything entirely wrong, and then an English monk finally uncovered the glaringly obvious Heiddegerian/Sartean existentialist truth of the Buddha's teachings before committing suicide, thereby becoming perhaps the first sottapana in at least 2000 years, like a Lawrence of Arabia (Sri Lanka?) for Buddhism.

I'm not saying this is "wrong" or "right" I'm just pointing out that this is indeed an implication of accepting his theory: it also implies that if he is not right about his views, than he is a rather plane fellow whose contributions to Buddhism is extremely tiny and unimportant, in the big picture. Its basically one or the other.
Last edited by Manopubbangama on Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:17 pm, edited 4 times in total.
budo
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Re: On Verification

Post by budo »

Bundokji wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:07 pm
budo wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 8:59 pm Whether you believe in the Buddha or not, or what the Buddha is saying is true or not, proveable or not, if the suttas are authentic or not, if the translations are authentic or not, are all:

irrelevant and another topic all together..
Indeed. We can believe in whatever we want, but in the public sphere, supporting/justifying our conclusions with evidence is often required. If someone told you that they believe in Einstien's theory, and they use it to discredit other ways of explaining things, and when you ask them why, they simply say because Einstein said so, you would not take them seriously. or would you?

:strawman:

The whole purpose of this topic is Buddhadasa and adhamma, and if someone told me what Buddhadasa said along the lines of

"You don't have to read Einstein's thesis, if you discover the theory of relativity yourself", I would respond with:

"Gee thanks!"
Bundokji
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Re: On Verification

Post by Bundokji »

budo wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:09 pm "You don't have to read Einstein's thesis, if you discover the theory of relativity yourself"
Even though this is not an accurate analogy of what ven. Buddhadasa said, I fail to see anything wrong with the above statement :coffee:

Peace
And the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus, saying: "Behold now, bhikkhus, I exhort you: All compounded things are subject to vanish. Strive with earnestness!"

This was the last word of the Tathagata.
budo
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Re: On Verification

Post by budo »

Bundokji wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:14 pm
budo wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:09 pm "You don't have to read Einstein's thesis, if you discover the theory of relativity yourself"
Even though this is not an accurate analogy of what ven. Buddhadasa said, I fail to see anything wrong with the above statement :coffee:

Peace
It pretty much is, he said someone who has never heard or seen the Tripitaka (aka the dhamma) and who investigates suffering will know it better than someone who reads the Tripitaka (the dhamma). That would make them a Buddha my friend. Which is exactly the problem, if I was as smart as Einstein (or Buddha) I wouldn't need to read his work, and yet here we are! Seeking his help!

Hence why singleton discoverers are rare beings in the world!
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Re: On Verification

Post by Bundokji »

budo wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:17 pm It pretty much is, he said someone who has never heard or seen the Tripitaka (aka the dhamma) and who investigates suffering will know it better than someone who reads the Tripitaka (the dhamma). That would make them a Buddha my friend. Which is exactly the problem, if I was as smart as Einstein (or Buddha) I wouldn't need to read his work, and yet here we are! Seeking his help!

Hence why singleton discoverers are rare beings in the world!
The crux of his message is not against the text:
Much though he recites the sacred texts, but acts not accordingly, that heedless man is like a cowherd who only counts the cows of others—he does not partake of the blessings of the holy life.

Little though he recites the sacred texts, but puts the Teaching into practice, forsaking lust, hatred, and delusion, with true wisdom and emancipated mind, clinging to nothing of this or any other world—he indeed partakes of the blessings of a holy life.
I also happen to like the following Zen proverb:
A donkey carrying a pile of holy books is still a donkey
And the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus, saying: "Behold now, bhikkhus, I exhort you: All compounded things are subject to vanish. Strive with earnestness!"

This was the last word of the Tathagata.
budo
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Re: On Verification

Post by budo »

Bundokji wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:26 pm
budo wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:17 pm It pretty much is, he said someone who has never heard or seen the Tripitaka (aka the dhamma) and who investigates suffering will know it better than someone who reads the Tripitaka (the dhamma). That would make them a Buddha my friend. Which is exactly the problem, if I was as smart as Einstein (or Buddha) I wouldn't need to read his work, and yet here we are! Seeking his help!

Hence why singleton discoverers are rare beings in the world!
The crux of his message is not against the text:
Much though he recites the sacred texts, but acts not accordingly, that heedless man is like a cowherd who only counts the cows of others—he does not partake of the blessings of the holy life.

Little though he recites the sacred texts, but puts the Teaching into practice, forsaking lust, hatred, and delusion, with true wisdom and emancipated mind, clinging to nothing of this or any other world—he indeed partakes of the blessings of a holy life.
I also happen to like the following Zen proverb:
A donkey carrying a pile of holy books is still a donkey
It doesn't negate what he said, which is pure non-sense unless you're a Paecceka Buddha or SammaSam Buddha. Also good thing this isn't a Zen forum, maybe that's where Buddhadasa belongs.
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SDC
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Re: On Verification

Post by SDC »

Sorry for not keeping up with my own thread. Work got busy today.

I guess what I’m getting at is criteria for labeling (and I’m beyond Buddhadasa at this point). This question is for all: to what degree can someone or something be written off as wrong prior to that personal investigation? And based on what?

While a clear meaning is hard to come by as we get into certain finer points of the suttas, into interpretation, there are broad strokes that are absolute red flags. For instance, a writer doesn’t even need to get into the meaning of a term in order to alter its significance in a more general understanding. Like, if someone were to say, “Nibbana is impossible”, that alters what will always be an uncontested agreement as far as that general understanding is concerned. No one that is looking to describe the Dhamma would say something so extreme. No one who wants to be taken seriously would try to alter that general understanding of such a broad concept. Though understanding will eventually get to the point where that whole general framework is in place, but meaning of it begins to differ among those pursuing how it applies. The scholar will attempt to take accounts of experience in order to give meaning, but the practitioner will, with the scholar’s help, look within in order to see how things apply, how they stand.

So where is the line drawn and how definitive should one be when they broach the subject especially if they have not verified through their own experience?
"As fruits fall from the tree, so people too, both young and old, fall when this body breaks." - Raṭṭhapāla (MN 82)
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Aloka
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Re: On Verification

Post by Aloka »

Manopubbangama wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:07 pm
Another thing that I find interesting, are the behavioural patterns of the Buddhadasa followers; unique, to say the least.

I don't think any of it can withstand scrutiny, which adds to the fiercely hermetic and defensive-cult like Aura that this internet tribe creates around the seat of their leader.

Heavens, Mr Manopubbangama! Who are the members of this mysterious cultish tribe...and what is the color of their Aura?

Do tell!

:coffee:
budo
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Re: On Verification

Post by budo »

SDC wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 10:26 pm Sorry for not keeping up with my own thread. Work got busy today.

I guess what I’m getting at is criteria for labeling (and I’m beyond Buddhadasa at this point). This question is for all: to what degree can someone or something be written off as wrong prior to that personal investigation? And based on what?

While a clear meaning is hard to come by as we get into certain finer points of the suttas, into interpretation, there are broad strokes that are absolute red flags. For instance, a writer doesn’t even need to get into the meaning of a term in order to alter its significance in a more general understanding. Like, if someone were to say, “Nibbana is impossible”, that alters what will always be an uncontested agreement as far as that general understanding is concerned. No one that is looking to describe the Dhamma would say something so extreme. No one who wants to be taken seriously would try to alter that general understanding of such a broad concept. Though understanding will eventually get to the point where that whole general framework is in place, but meaning of it begins to differ among those pursuing how it applies. The scholar will attempt to take accounts of experience in order to give meaning, but the practitioner will, with the scholar’s help, look within in order to see how things apply, how they stand.

So where is the line drawn and how definitive should one be when they broach the subject especially if they have not verified through their own experience?
(Typing from phone so can't keep things clean)

I find it funny how people criticize theory while at the same time get their information also theoretically (like zen books, buhadassa, etc.)

People aren't thinking at a meta level, or birds eye view, so they keep falling into logical traps.

So I will keep this response as meta-level as meta-level can be.

At the end of the day, your question has nothing to do with dhamma.

If a truth is so rare it can only be uncovered by one being once every "big bang" creation period let's say, doesn't matter if it's the theory of relativity, or the four noble truths, then whatever reference (in programming called a pointer) closer to it in time is closer to that truth and less dilluted by the decay of time (impermenence).

So if you don't believe in the suttas, you may as well give up Buddhism because then there's no Buddha, no awakened beings, no jhana, no nothing, just the mundane life.

You may place your bets in other religions but since they're also faith based and prone to the decay of time, you're faced with the exact same issues as Early Buddhism.

So if you're going to take up a faith, you need to go all in, 100%, test it out and either keep it whole package or discard it whole package. It doesn't mean you can't test it out in bits over time, but at some point you're going to have to make a decision, because if the faith has a final goal then being a "cafeteria" buddhist where you pick and choose is just going to waste your time.

Destroying the first 3 fetters means "Going all in" like in poker, all chips are on the table, there is no going back. You can't be on the fence.

You can test the theory out first through logic and process of elimination, but that method is limited and handicapped by your reasoning skills and intelligence levels, as many people constantly fall into logical traps over and over.

The second method is to follow the instructions word for word in the instructions manual, if you're constantly doubting the manual you're always going to start over, lose momentum, and then blame the manual or the interpretation instead of yourself.

I'm personally way past that stage, both on a logical level, and experiential level, the 3 fetters destroyed I can never believe in a mundane ritual (chanting, candles, etc..), a mundane lifestyle and view

The universe can be a simulation within a simulation, turtles all the way down, it took humans only 100 years to make virtual reality with AI that can replicate reality, therefore trying to figure out the universe is a complete waste of time, I just want OUT of this mundane existence and that exit means:

The only way to win, is to not play the game - stilling all fabrications, mental, verbal, and bodily.

The juice is simply not worth the squeeze, let someone else be a slave and be a vegan caring about empty simulations. You've existed for eternity, you've done all that sacrificing already, the only thing you haven't done is STOPPED being RESTLESS.

All you have to do is stop moving, from without and from within.

Good luck
Last edited by budo on Tue Mar 19, 2019 11:29 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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DooDoot
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Re: On Verification

Post by DooDoot »

budo wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:09 pm The whole purpose of this topic is Buddhadasa and adhamma, and if someone told me what Buddhadasa said along the lines of

"You don't have to read Einstein's thesis, if you discover the theory of relativity yourself", I would respond with:

"Gee thanks!"
The purpose of this topic appears to be for the abandoning of "hollow" unsubstantiated slanderous speech. :geek:

The sutta say to judge a bhikkhu, the bhikkhu must be observed thoroughly.

Selecting one or two sentences of translated teachings given to laypeople does not form the basis of judging a bhikkhu.

Since the book called Handbook for Mankind is very hard core lokuttara Theravada in its subject matter, it is obviously not "Zen". How can the following book chapters not be "Theravada"?
1. Looking at Buddhism
2. The True Nature of Things
3. Three Universal Characteristics
4. Grasping and Clinging
5. The Threefold Training
6. The Things We Cling To
7. Insight by the Nature Method
8. Insight by Organized Training
9. Emancipation from the World

Handbook for Mankind
Did you, Budo, read the entire book before making your hollow litigious allegations? :geek:
budo wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 7:25 pm
Buddhadasa said:
Though a person may never have seen or even heard of the Tipitaka, if he carries out detailed investigation every time suffering arises and scorches his mind he can be said to be studying the Tipitaka directly, and far more correctly than people actually in the process of reading it. These may be just caressing the books of the Tipitaka everyday without having any knowledge of the immortal Dhamma, the teaching contained within them.
The above is an isolated out of context quote from one particular teaching circumstance. The claim about Buddhadasa by Budo is false. Since Ajahn Buddhadasa translated volumes of sutta from Pali into Thai, obviously he was not against the suttas.

The above excerpt from Handbook from Mankind was merely saying it is better to study inner suffering than study sutta without exploring suffering. Buddhadasa is merely criticising mere intellectual study, similar to the impression of SDA's & Budo's activities on this forum. Since Budo is often posting about their personal claims to jhana, the impression is Budo has not studied the reality of suffering & clinging, as Buddhadasa taught. Its totally ironic the poster named 'Budo' claims to adhere to Dhamma-Vinaya yet this very same 'Budo' makes public declarations of jhana when Vinaya strictly forbids this :shock: :roll: . Buddhadasa taught the following in Handbook for Mankind, which I imagine Budo might possibly object to:
Anyone who becomes so pleased with and infatuated by the attainment of deep concentration, this sitting with body rigid and devoid of all sensation, that he is unable to progress further in vipassana, is in a most pitiable position.

http://www.buddhanet.net/budasa11.htm
The allegations about Buddhadasa by Budo are, imo, unsubstantiated, heedless & false. :|
budo wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:27 pmIt doesn't negate what he said, which is pure non-sense unless you're a Paecceka Buddha or SammaSam Buddha. Also good thing this isn't a Zen forum, maybe that's where Buddhadasa belongs.
Again, more hollow non-sense. Not only does Thailand generally regard Buddhadasa as a great Theravada scholar but so do its contemporary great scholars, such as P.A. Payutto. If Buddhadasa was not considered a great Theravada scholar in Thailand, why did Thailand choose him to represent Thailand at the 6th Buddhist Council in Rangoon Burma in 1954? :shrug: Its amusing to read an internet based Jewish householder from Canada or the USA or wherever that posts about counterfeit upadana jhana (that is probably used to escape the nagging of his wife :D ) claiming they know & understand one of Thailand's most decorated & renowned monks, namely, Bhikkhu Buddhadasa. The translations & works of Buddhadasa fill a whole room in the Thai National library as well as in Buddhadasa's monastery called Suan Mokkh. Buddhadasa translated volumes of Pali suttas into the Thai language, including a series of translations called "From His Own Lips". :roll:
budo wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 8:59 pmDhamma: dialogues, narratives of mixed prose and verse, explanations, verses, spontaneous exclamations, quotations, birth stories, amazing events, question & answer sessions."
The fact that there are so few (only a handful) a birth stories (in later language) among thousands of suttas show the above quote is questionable. The Dhamma is defined as what is visible here & now. MN 38 makes not only this clear but makes it clear the noble disciple does not assert something is true merely because the Buddha said it. Abrahamic ideas of apostasy appear to have no place in Buddhism. MN 38 says:
“Bhikkhus, knowing and seeing in this way, would you speak thus: ‘The Teacher is respected by us. We speak as we do out of respect for the Teacher’?”—“No, venerable sir.”—“Knowing and seeing in this way, would you speak thus: ‘The Recluse says this, and we speak thus at the bidding of the Recluse’?”—“No, venerable sir.”—“Knowing and seeing in this way, would you acknowledge another teacher?”—“No, venerable sir.”—“Knowing and seeing in this way, would you return to the observances, tumultuous debates, and auspicious signs of ordinary recluses and brahmins, taking them as the core of the holy life?”—“No, venerable sir.”—“Do you speak only of what you have known, seen, and understood for yourselves?” —“Yes, venerable sir.”

“Good, bhikkhus. So you have been guided by me with this Dhamma, which is visible here and now, immediately effective, inviting inspection, onward leading, to be experienced by the wise for themselves. For it was with reference to this that it has been said: ‘Bhikkhus, this Dhamma is visible here and now, immediately effective, inviting inspection, onward leading, to be experienced by the wise for themselves.’

https://suttacentral.net/mn38/en/bodhi
MN 38 above appears completely the opposite to the fundamentalism of the poster that calls themselves "Budo".
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Manopubbangama
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Re: On Verification

Post by Manopubbangama »

DooDoot wrote: Tue Mar 19, 2019 11:26 pm
MN 38 above appears completely the opposite to the fundamentalism of the poster that calls themselves "Budo".
Just FYI, when you resort to ad-hominums it weakens your argument.
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Dan74-MkII
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Re: On Verification

Post by Dan74-MkII »

Budo, you've just proclaimed yourself a stream-enterer or once-returner. Have you spoken to a teacher about this in real life?

:focus:

I agree with SDC, to declare something adhamma we need to be sure it leads away from liberation. Even material pursuits, in specific cases, can bring one closer to liberation, as one can begin to see their limitations and abandon them wholeheartedly. While do so prematurely may lead one to hanker for such things while outwardly pursuiing a renunciate lifestyle. And so it is with many specific teachings and practices..

Sometimes folks seize upon one specific utterance of bikkhu and declare him to be an adhammic teacher. And yet we don't know if the utterance was faithfully recorded, what the context was, how the bikkhu actually meant it and also it needs to be said that, even if the bikkhu is wrong on a particular point, that of course doesn't make him a bad bikkhu.

Those bikkhus who teach more from experience rather than reciting the suttas, are liable to be more idiosyncratic and deviate somewhat. But teaching from experience heart to heart penetrates much deeper rather teaching something that is merely learned, since it can be adjusted to the recipient in skillful ways and misunderstandings more readily perceived and corrected. As long as where the teachings deviate does not undermine the entire Dhamma practice but promote and nourish liberation, it is the Dhamma.

Personally I look more at how the bikkhu (or a bikkhuni) conduct themselves, live their lives, treat other people, ie sila than whether they could be caught teaching something idiosyncratic. Are the teachings helpful or do they lead away from liberation is the only question that really matters, IMO. And in all but the most blatant cases, this question is quite tricky to answer.
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Aloka
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Re: On Verification

Post by Aloka »

budo wrote:
I'm personally way past that stage, both on a logical level, and experiential level, the 3 fetters destroyed I can never believe in a mundane ritual (chanting, candles, etc..), a mundane lifestyle and view
Maybe it would be a good idea to read Sn 4.3 Dutthatthaka Sutta: Corrupted.

Excerpt:

Whoever boasts to others, unasked,
of his practices, precepts,
is, say the skilled,
ignoble by nature —
he who speaks of himself
of his own accord.

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
:anjali:

.
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