Arahants and magic tricks

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
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Bundokji
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Re: Arahants and magic tricks

Post by Bundokji »

binocular wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 5:17 pm If I would have to guess, I'd say they are -- but it doesn't matter for them. Sensory illusions are relevant for people who need to get things done in the world. Assuming that arahants don't have to, for example, build bridges and ships nor measure liquid contents in transparent containers, the optical illusions connected with water and other fluids are irrelevant to them.
Do you consider ships and bridges sensory illusions?
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.
binocular
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Re: Arahants and magic tricks

Post by binocular »

Bundokji wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 6:00 pm
binocular wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 5:17 pm If I would have to guess, I'd say they are -- but it doesn't matter for them. Sensory illusions are relevant for people who need to get things done in the world. Assuming that arahants don't have to, for example, build bridges and ships nor measure liquid contents in transparent containers, the optical illusions connected with water and other fluids are irrelevant to them.
Do you consider ships and bridges sensory illusions?
Huh?

Optical illusions connected with water and other fluids are relevant to those people who need to build ships and bridges, for example (those illusions have to do with measuring depth of the water, for example).
Hic Rhodus, hic salta!
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Bundokji
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Re: Arahants and magic tricks

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binocular wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 6:15 pm Optical illusions connected with water and other fluids are relevant to those people who need to build ships and bridges, for example (those illusions have to do with measuring depth of the water, for example).
So, if i understand you correctly, the notion of objective reality and its utility in constructing things is irrelevant to the Arahant.
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.
binocular
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Re: Arahants and magic tricks

Post by binocular »

Bundokji wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 6:20 pmSo, if i understand you correctly, the notion of objective reality and its utility in constructing things is irrelevant to the Arahant.
Sure. The arahant has no things to do and no places to be, unlike ordinary people.
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Bundokji
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Re: Arahants and magic tricks

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binocular wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 6:22 pm Sure. The arahant has no things to do and no places to be, unlike ordinary people.
But you might be equating relevance with ability. When sensual passion is no longer a motive, this might unleash abilities that are not known to ordinary people. Usually, insight is associated with the senses becoming exceptionally clear.
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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Mahabrahma
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Re: Arahants and magic tricks

Post by Mahabrahma »

chownah wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 2:58 pm ...
Just keep your mind set on the Dharma. Magic and Transcendental powers, although they can be helpful, are secondary to the philosophy that will emancipate you from the suffering of this world. In any case, pursue Metta and nothing else, Chownah.
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Re: Arahants and magic tricks

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Bundokji wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 7:04 pmBut you might be equating relevance with ability. When sensual passion is no longer a motive, this might unleash abilities that are not known to ordinary people. Usually, insight is associated with the senses becoming exceptionally clear.
I think it would be easier and quicker to just become an arahant oneself than to try to come to a conclusion by speculating about the exact scope of an arahant's abilities.
"There are these four unconjecturables that are not to be conjectured about, that would bring madness & vexation to anyone who conjectured about them. Which four?

"The Buddha-range of the Buddhas[1] is an unconjecturable that is not to be conjectured about, that would bring madness & vexation to anyone who conjectured about it.

"The jhana-range of a person in jhana...[2]

"The [precise working out of the] results of kamma...

"Conjecture about [the origin, etc., of] the world is an unconjecturable that is not to be conjectured about, that would bring madness & vexation to anyone who conjectured about it.

"These are the four unconjecturables that are not to be conjectured about, that would bring madness & vexation to anyone who conjectured about them."

Notes
1. I.e., the range of powers a Buddha develops as a result of becoming a Buddha.
2.
I.e., the range of powers that one may obtain while absorbed in jhana.

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

So there, thread topic rendered moot.
Hic Rhodus, hic salta!
binocular
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Re: Arahants and magic tricks

Post by binocular »

Mahabrahma wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 10:53 pm
chownah wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 2:58 pm...
Just keep your mind set on the Dharma. Magic and Transcendental powers, although they can be helpful, are secondary to the philosophy that will emancipate you from the suffering of this world. In any case, pursue Metta and nothing else, Chownah.
Did you hear that, Chownah? You're receiving such valuable teaching and guidance here, Chownah!
Hic Rhodus, hic salta!
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Bundokji
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Re: Arahants and magic tricks

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binocular wrote: Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:00 am I think it would be easier and quicker to just become an arahant oneself than to try to come to a conclusion by speculating about the exact scope of an arahant's abilities.
I thought Arahants have ended becoming. Now, while this might be technically true, to render your statement moot because of it might be cheap debating trick
So there, thread topic rendered moot.
If you truly believe your own statement, you would not have had an input on the possibility of the Arahant being subject to sensory delusion. Your input was explained through information available to us about Arahants and through deductive reasoning. I do not personally think your approach resembles what the Buddha warned against. Your reasoning was based on relevance and i responded by warning against equating relevance with abilities. It is a disciplined approach to knowledge, something the Buddha encouraged.
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.
chownah
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Re: Arahants and magic tricks

Post by chownah »

Mahabrahma wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 10:53 pm
chownah wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 2:58 pm ...
Just keep your mind set on the Dharma. Magic and Transcendental powers, although they can be helpful, are secondary to the philosophy that will emancipate you from the suffering of this world. In any case, pursue Metta and nothing else, Chownah.
My views on the buddha's teachings mentioning magic and transcendental powers do not get in the way of my pursuing the end of suffering.

You talk about the real and unreal as if you have some authority with respect to that....yet you do not answer very simple questions meant to reveal what you mean when you use those terms.

chownah
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Re: Arahants and magic tricks

Post by chownah »

Bundokji wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 5:59 pm
chownah wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 3:04 pm are you suggesting that you take me to be an arahant so my experience is the defining one?....I doubt it.
Why not? Why do you think the Arahant would be different to what you described when it comes to a magic trick?
Actually I don't see that you have clarified what I mentioned in that you only refer to me talking about my experience.....are you suggesting that you take me to be an arahant so my experience is the defining one?....I doubt it.
Here is what I am wanting to be clarified:
I think you should clarify what you mean by an arahant being deceived and also what you mean by the trick working on them.
What does it mean for an arahant to be deceived?
What does it mean to say that "the trick worked" on them?

These are really simple things....if they are understood then almost assuredly your OP will be answered in short order......or course an understanding of the OP would not facilitate the wandering in the thicket of views which is this thread......are you interested in an answer to your OP or are you really just using the OP as a springboard into the thicket?
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Mahabrahma
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Re: Arahants and magic tricks

Post by Mahabrahma »

chownah wrote: Mon Sep 28, 2020 2:41 pm
Mahabrahma wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 10:53 pm
chownah wrote: Sun Sep 27, 2020 2:58 pm ...
Just keep your mind set on the Dharma. Magic and Transcendental powers, although they can be helpful, are secondary to the philosophy that will emancipate you from the suffering of this world. In any case, pursue Metta and nothing else, Chownah.
My views on the buddha's teachings mentioning magic and transcendental powers do not get in the way of my pursuing the end of suffering.

You talk about the real and unreal as if you have some authority with respect to that....yet you do not answer very simple questions meant to reveal what you mean when you use those terms.

chownah
Chownah you already know the answers and I can tell, I can sense you are very intelligent. If you want to ask me what you truly want to know, I can answer, otherwise what is the point?
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Bundokji
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Re: Arahants and magic tricks

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chownah wrote: Mon Sep 28, 2020 2:48 pm Actually I don't see that you have clarified what I mentioned in that you only refer to me talking about my experience.....are you suggesting that you take me to be an arahant so my experience is the defining one?....I doubt it.
Why not? Why do you think the Arahant would be different to what you described when it comes to a magic trick?
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.
chownah
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Re: Arahants and magic tricks

Post by chownah »

Bundokji wrote: Mon Sep 28, 2020 7:04 pm
chownah wrote: Mon Sep 28, 2020 2:48 pm Actually I don't see that you have clarified what I mentioned in that you only refer to me talking about my experience.....are you suggesting that you take me to be an arahant so my experience is the defining one?....I doubt it.
Why not? Why do you think the Arahant would be different to what you described when it comes to a magic trick?
These questions arise in you, not in me. I have not said that I think the arahannt would be different (or the same) to what I described when it comes to a magic trick....

You still have not clarified as I requested:
What does it mean for an arahant to be deceived?
What does it mean to say that "the trick worked" on them?

Simple questions....why the elaborate dodge in answering?....questions that are central to clarifying your OP.

You talk about arahants being deceived....what do you man by this?....are you stumped?
You talk about the trick working on arahants....what do you mean by this?....are you stumped?

chownah
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Re: Arahants and magic tricks

Post by Bundokji »

chownah wrote: Tue Sep 29, 2020 5:15 am These questions arise in you, not in me. I have not said that I think the arahannt would be different (or the same) to what I described when it comes to a magic trick....

You still have not clarified as I requested:
What does it mean for an arahant to be deceived?
What does it mean to say that "the trick worked" on them?

Simple questions....why the elaborate dodge in answering?....questions that are central to clarifying your OP.

You talk about arahants being deceived....what do you man by this?....are you stumped?
You talk about the trick working on arahants....what do you mean by this?....are you stumped?

chownah
I simply answered your questions with a counter question. Your questions begin with the words "what does it mean". If you do not know the meaning of words in your questions, then you can either refer to dictionary or to your own experience. As you referred to your own experience before, i asked you why the Arahant would be different. In the OP, i provided context through the example of a magician. Magician tricks are one way of describing deception in the world and the Buddha utilized it in his teachings through the sutta i referenced before. In a subsequent post, i provided the example of a mirage through referencing a verse from the dhammapada, while your questions lack context, and instead of directly discussing the OP and paying attention to context, you referred to me and whatever you think arise in my mind. :roll:

Other discussants provided answers supported by reasoning. I do not think this is speculative as long as uncertainty is acknowledged. It is a way of engaging with the teachings with awareness, not a thicket of views as you described it. It seems that your approach to the discussion presents a thicket of views by asking irrelevant questions and by ignoring context.

I suggest your re-read the OP and the subsequent discussion. If you believe that the topic is pointless, noble silence remains an option to you. Its up to you to reflect why you decided to engage in the topic in the manner you did.
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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