Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

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coconut
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Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

Post by coconut »

frank k wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 4:57 pm

I heard Pa Auk made an excuse about MN 111 that only Sariputta was special enough to do 'jhana' in that way described in MN 111. Then take a look at AN 9.36. It's talking about everyone, not just Sariputta. And there are a number of other suttas corroborating, if one is willing to actually not be afraid to confront uncomfortable truths that challenge their faith.
I have only one question for any Pau-Auk follower. Where is "Kalapa" found in the suttas of the four nikayas?


Split from the "Ajahn Brahmavamso's Dark Jhana" thread. – Dhammanando
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Pondera
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Re: Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

Post by Pondera »

coconut wrote: Mon Nov 30, 2020 1:25 pm
frank k wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 4:57 pm

I heard Pa Auk made an excuse about MN 111 that only Sariputta was special enough to do 'jhana' in that way described in MN 111. Then take a look at AN 9.36. It's talking about everyone, not just Sariputta. And there are a number of other suttas corroborating, if one is willing to actually not be afraid to confront uncomfortable truths that challenge their faith.
I have only one question for any Pau-Auk follower. Where is "Kalapa" found in the suttas of the four nikayas?


Split from the "Ajahn Brahmavamso's Dark Jhana" thread. – Dhammanando
From what I can tell (and I haven’t done the math) this doesn’t sound too far off from your ordinary “molecule”
Kalapas are composed of eight inseparable elements of material essence in varying amounts which are:[4] Pathavi (earth), Apo (water), Tejo (fire), Vayo (air), Vanna (color), Gandha (smell), Rasa (taste), and Oja (nutrition).
Someone with time and a calculator might be interested in comparing the size of a kalapa with the size of a molecule.
said to be about 1/46,656th the size of a particle of dust from a wheel of chariot. the size of a particle of dust from a wheel of chariot.
This would require measuring the spherical surface of a piece of dust from a chariot wheel. While not exactly impossible in theory, very difficult in practice.

We can make a few assumptions. 🤔 maybe I have the time. Let’s see ... I definitely have the calculator. Do I possess the wits? That is the main question.

AHEM!!! 🤔 First: the spherical surface area of a piece of dust from a chariot wheel. Leaving aside the wheel for now, we can assume that we have a single piece of dust.

That is about a micron in diameter at the most - assuming spherical shape. 0.000001 metres. Okay. We’re off to the races.

Divide this by 46,656 ... mmm hmm 🧐

That’s: 0.000000000128 m

Mkay - moving right along 😀 let’s see how big an average aromatic particle is in diameter. Hmm 🤔

According to Google:
The diameter of a molecule, assuming it to be spherical; has a numerical value of 10-8 centimeter multiplied by a factor dependent on the compound or element.
Those familiar with scientific notation will recall that 10^-8 cm can be rewritten:

0.0000000001 metres

Our previous result:

0.000000000128 metres

Is consistent with the kalapa theory.

So, again, Buddhist thinkers at either the Buddha’s time or shortly thereafter have put forth theories that do not contradict modern day science. If we have no reason to assume that modern science is “flawed” then we can accept the theories of the Theravadins in a Abidhammic sense.

Of course, it likely never appeared in a sermon by the Buddha - however (as my intellectual endeavours have shown) the theory of the kalapa is compatible with scientific discovery (certainly where the particle is said to possess scent and basic aromatic compounds are relatively small in molecular number and - as I’ve shown - contain the same degree of “smallness” in the scientific field as the Buddhist Abhidammic field). 🧐

Remarkable that these early theorists could ration 1/46,656 - as if with certainty and (some two thousand years later) show themselves to be entirely accurate.

An awe inspiring wonder, to be sure.

Pondera 🧐
“Monk, the property of light, the property of beauty, the property of the dimension of the infinitude of space, the property of the dimension of the infinitude of consciousness, the property of the dimension of nothingness: These properties are to be reached as perception attainments.[2] The property of the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception is to be reached as a remnant-of-fabrications attainment. The property of the cessation of feeling & perception is to be reached as a cessation attainment."[3]

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
BrokenBones
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Re: Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

Post by BrokenBones »

Re OP... no they are not mentioned. However wonderful later imaginations/meditations/philosophers were in discerning kalapas... the Buddha didn't seem to think them worth a hill of beans... atomism isn't what the Buddha taught.

Metta
coconut
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Re: Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

Post by coconut »

BrokenBones wrote: Wed Dec 16, 2020 5:48 am Re OP... no they are not mentioned. However wonderful later imaginations/meditations/philosophers were in discerning kalapas... the Buddha didn't seem to think them worth a hill of beans... atomism isn't what the Buddha taught.

Metta
:goodpost:

I would go further and say, not only is it not what he taught, but it even goes against his teaching and further into delusion. One is supposed to turn away from the aggregates, not go deeper into them.
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Re: Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

Post by Sabbe_Dhamma_Anatta »

The concept of Kalapa is way far much more real than
  • the Self
  • or Soul
  • or Tao
  • or Kundalini
  • or constipated jhana
  • or bio electric qi flowing through energy meridians in a jhāna meditator
  • or "PIE energy running through the energy channel loops in the body is not imaginary. It's a tangible force that throbs through every cell in your body."
  • or "lingering energy around the body for a while after death,
  • or "hells wardens will dragging one down to King Yama."
Just examples: some may not represent OP's view, and some may be related to the bunch, one way or another, perhaps except Self and Soul which are used to exemplify the more-real-ness of kalapas than these Two.


How about considering kalapa as in: "PIE energy running through the energy channel loops in the body is not imaginary. It's a tangible force that throbs through every cell in your body" :rofl:


Where in the world of suttas could one find such "delusions"? :)


Conclusion:
  • Ending up in things similar to those mentioned above very likely stems from irrational fear of classical theravada, imo. :thumbsup:

:heart:
.


🅢🅐🅑🅑🅔 🅓🅗🅐🅜🅜🅐 🅐🅝🅐🅣🅣🅐

Self ...
  • "an entirely and perfectly foolish idea" :D ~ MN22
skandha
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Re: Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

Post by skandha »

The idea of the rupa kalapa is just a convenient commentarial terminology of the indivisible characteristics of matter i.e. the four great elements in the Suttas. Further, the characteristics of the rupa kalapa does not deviate from the suttas, the characteristics of arising, persisting and cessation. The suttas may not use the term kalapa but the general ideas of the kalapa are there.
Form is like a lump of foam, Feeling like a water bubble; Perception is like a mirage, Volitions like a plantain trunk, and consciousness like an illusion
- SN 22.95
BrokenBones
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Re: Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

Post by BrokenBones »

skandha wrote: Wed Dec 16, 2020 11:23 pm The idea of the rupa kalapa is just a convenient commentarial terminology of the indivisible characteristics of matter i.e. the four great elements in the Suttas. Further, the characteristics of the rupa kalapa does not deviate from the suttas, the characteristics of arising, persisting and cessation. The suttas may not use the term kalapa but the general ideas of the kalapa are there.
If you say so... but what use are they in understanding the Dhamma... things change... I get it... such an important part of 19th century Burmese traditions that sprang up and they don't even get a passing comment from the Buddha.

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bazzaman
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Re: Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

Post by bazzaman »

Assuming "nikayas" refers to the Sutta Pitaka collections, why only four? Last time I checked there were five.
Atāṇo loko anabhissaro...

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skandha
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Re: Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

Post by skandha »

BrokenBones wrote: Wed Dec 16, 2020 11:51 pm
skandha wrote: Wed Dec 16, 2020 11:23 pm The idea of the rupa kalapa is just a convenient commentarial terminology of the indivisible characteristics of matter i.e. the four great elements in the Suttas. Further, the characteristics of the rupa kalapa does not deviate from the suttas, the characteristics of arising, persisting and cessation. The suttas may not use the term kalapa but the general ideas of the kalapa are there.
If you say so... but what use are they in understanding the Dhamma... things change... I get it... such an important part of 19th century Burmese traditions that sprang up and they don't even get a passing comment from the Buddha.

Metta
Buddhism being a living tradition is dynamic and is not isolated from the trends of the times. The trends of the time is such that the Theravadins developed the idea of the kalapa and the Sarvastivadins in northern India developed the idea of the paramanu. I suspect there are also other schools of Indian thought that followed this trend of atom-ism at the time. Both the Theravada and Sarvastivada pay importance to the Abhidhamma where the analysis of phenomena to it's minute details is a common theme eventhough as far as I know the Pali Abhidhamma does not use the term kalapa. Though no doubt the spirit of precise analysis come down from the Buddha himself and his disciples. He may not have used the term kalapa but he used terms like lakkhana (characteristics) or dhatu vibhanga (analysis of elements). It's use in the Dhamma is the clear comprehension of phenomena by way of thorough analysis. The suttas always recommend us to be contemplate phenomena internally, externally both internally and externally. So we play with contemplating phenomena at it's minutest detail and also step back and look at it from a larger perspective.
Form is like a lump of foam, Feeling like a water bubble; Perception is like a mirage, Volitions like a plantain trunk, and consciousness like an illusion
- SN 22.95
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Ceisiwr
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Re: Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

Post by Ceisiwr »

skandha wrote: Thu Dec 17, 2020 12:27 am
Buddhism being a living tradition is dynamic and is not isolated from the trends of the times. The trends of the time is such that the Theravadins developed the idea of the kalapa and the Sarvastivadins in northern India developed the idea of the paramanu. I suspect there are also other schools of Indian thought that followed this trend of atom-ism at the time. Both the Theravada and Sarvastivada pay importance to the Abhidhamma where the analysis of phenomena to it's minute details is a common theme eventhough as far as I know the Pali Abhidhamma does not use the term kalapa. Though no doubt the spirit of precise analysis come down from the Buddha himself and his disciples. He may not have used the term kalapa but he used terms like lakkhana (characteristics) or dhatu vibhanga (analysis of elements). It's use in the Dhamma is the clear comprehension of phenomena by way of thorough analysis. As the suttas always recommend us to be contemplate phenomena internally, externally both internally and externally, we play with contemplating phenomena at it's minutest detail and also step back and look at it from a larger perspective.
Its very much found in Sarvāstivāda and Sautrāntika. In terms of Theravāda its found developed in later texts such as the ṭīkās and the Abhidhammattha-saṅgaha. You won’t find it in the suttas or the Abhidhamma texts. In the Visuddhimagga Ven. Buddhaghosa merely muses about what would be the case if atomism were true:
89. 3. By particles: in this body the earth element taken as reduced to fine dust and powdered to the size of the smallest atom31 might amount to an average doóa measure full; and that is held together32 by the water element measuring half as much. Being maintained33 by the fire element, and distended by the air element, it does not get scattered or dissipated. Instead of getting scattered or dissipated, it arrives at the alternative states of the female and male sex, etc., and manifests smallness, bigness, length, shortness, toughness, rigidity, and so on.
But later he goes on to say:
72. [Q. 9] Then it follows that Nibbána, too, has the kind of permanence [claimed] of the atom and so on.
[A.] That is not so. Because of the absence of any cause [that brings about its arising].

[Q. 10] Because Nibbána has permanence, then, these [that is, the atom, etc.] are permanent as well.
[A.] That is not so. Because [in that proposition] the characteristic of [logical] cause does not arise. [In other words, to say that Nibbána is permanent is not to assert a reason why the atom, etc., should be permanent]

[Q. 11] Then they are permanent because of the absence of their arising, as Nibbána is.
[A.] That is not so. Because the atom and so on have not been established as facts.
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/aut ... on2011.pdf

Personally I don’t subscribe to the theory.
Paññaṃ nappamajjeyya, saccamanurakkheyya, cāgamanubrūheyya, santimeva so sikkheyyā’ti
“One should not neglect wisdom, should preserve truth, cultivate relinquishment and train for peace.”

Dhātuvibhaṅga Sutta
skandha
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Re: Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

Post by skandha »

Ceisiwr wrote: Thu Dec 17, 2020 12:39 am
skandha wrote: Thu Dec 17, 2020 12:27 am
Buddhism being a living tradition is dynamic and is not isolated from the trends of the times. The trends of the time is such that the Theravadins developed the idea of the kalapa and the Sarvastivadins in northern India developed the idea of the paramanu. I suspect there are also other schools of Indian thought that followed this trend of atom-ism at the time. Both the Theravada and Sarvastivada pay importance to the Abhidhamma where the analysis of phenomena to it's minute details is a common theme eventhough as far as I know the Pali Abhidhamma does not use the term kalapa. Though no doubt the spirit of precise analysis come down from the Buddha himself and his disciples. He may not have used the term kalapa but he used terms like lakkhana (characteristics) or dhatu vibhanga (analysis of elements). It's use in the Dhamma is the clear comprehension of phenomena by way of thorough analysis. As the suttas always recommend us to be contemplate phenomena internally, externally both internally and externally, we play with contemplating phenomena at it's minutest detail and also step back and look at it from a larger perspective.

Its very much found in Sarvāstivāda and Sautrāntika.
So do you mean terminology equating to atom, like kalapa, paramanu, cunna are used in the Sarvastivada agamas? I presume the Sautrantika is just a subset of the Sarvastivada who focus on the sutras so would use the same agamas.
Ceisiwr wrote: Thu Dec 17, 2020 12:39 am In terms of Theravāda its found developed in later texts such as the ṭīkās and the Abhidhammattha-saṅgaha. You won’t find it in the suttas or the Abhidhamma texts. In the Visuddhimagga Ven. Buddhaghosa merely muses about what would be the case if atomism were true:
89. 3. By particles: in this body the earth element taken as reduced to fine dust and powdered to the size of the smallest atom31 might amount to an average doóa measure full; and that is held together32 by the water element measuring half as much. Being maintained33 by the fire element, and distended by the air element, it does not get scattered or dissipated. Instead of getting scattered or dissipated, it arrives at the alternative states of the female and male sex, etc., and manifests smallness, bigness, length, shortness, toughness, rigidity, and so on.
But later he goes on to say:
72. [Q. 9] Then it follows that Nibbána, too, has the kind of permanence [claimed] of the atom and so on.
[A.] That is not so. Because of the absence of any cause [that brings about its arising].

[Q. 10] Because Nibbána has permanence, then, these [that is, the atom, etc.] are permanent as well.
[A.] That is not so. Because [in that proposition] the characteristic of [logical] cause does not arise. [In other words, to say that Nibbána is permanent is not to assert a reason why the atom, etc., should be permanent]

[Q. 11] Then they are permanent because of the absence of their arising, as Nibbána is.
[A.] That is not so. Because the atom and so on have not been established as facts.
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/aut ... on2011.pdf

Personally I don’t subscribe to the theory.
I would not subscribe to the theory if it posits a position of permanence of non arising. That would be against the characteristics of the conditioned - arising, cessation, persist while changing. However if the theory was just about the refinement and precision of breaking down the characteristics of the material aggregate then there is no problem.
Form is like a lump of foam, Feeling like a water bubble; Perception is like a mirage, Volitions like a plantain trunk, and consciousness like an illusion
- SN 22.95
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Ceisiwr
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Re: Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

Post by Ceisiwr »

skandha wrote: Thu Dec 17, 2020 1:43 am
So do you mean terminology equating to atom, like kalapa, paramanu, cunna are used in the Sarvastivada agamas? I presume the Sautrantika is just a subset of the Sarvastivada who focus on the sutras so would use the same agamas.
Not the Agamas (as far as I have read) but their Abhidharma. The Sautrāntikas weren’t nearly as purist as claimed. Although they rejected the Sarvāstivādin Abhidharma and claimed to rely on the sutras only in the end they developed their own Abhidharma of sorts. No Buddhist can really escape an Abhidharma/Abhidhamma of some kind for the suttas/Agamas, in the end, will be explained and elaborated upon.

In all likelihood the later Theravādin texts which accept this idea likely got it from these two schools of thought.
I would not subscribe to the theory if it posits a position of permanence of non arising. That would be against the characteristics of the conditioned - arising, cessation, persist while changing. However if the theory was just about the refinement and precision of breaking down the characteristics of the material aggregate then there is no problem.
The problem is that it takes qualities (earth, fire etc) and turns them into “material things”. This forgets that rupa was likely used by the Buddha to mean “image” or “representation” rather than “matter”. It’s also hard to maintain in face of modern atomic theory. Modern atoms, for example, don’t always have nutritive essence and neither do they have temperature (fire). They also aren’t momentarily existent.
Paññaṃ nappamajjeyya, saccamanurakkheyya, cāgamanubrūheyya, santimeva so sikkheyyā’ti
“One should not neglect wisdom, should preserve truth, cultivate relinquishment and train for peace.”

Dhātuvibhaṅga Sutta
skandha
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Re: Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

Post by skandha »

Ceisiwr wrote: Thu Dec 17, 2020 1:56 am
The problem is that it takes qualities (earth, fire etc) and turns them into “material things”. This forgets that rupa was likely used by the Buddha to mean “image” or “representation” rather than “matter”. It’s also hard to maintain in face of modern atomic theory. Modern atoms, for example, don’t always have nutritive essence and neither do they have temperature (fire). They also aren’t momentarily existent.
Yes, I agree. I feel there is too much focus with rupa as "material things" out there. Rupa to me is at the experiential level on the senses within the body, the sense impressions. Image or form is in fact a literal translation of the term rupa. Materiality I presume is used to focus on the sensuality of it.
Last edited by skandha on Thu Dec 17, 2020 2:14 am, edited 1 time in total.
Form is like a lump of foam, Feeling like a water bubble; Perception is like a mirage, Volitions like a plantain trunk, and consciousness like an illusion
- SN 22.95
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Ceisiwr
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Re: Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

Post by Ceisiwr »

skandha wrote: Thu Dec 17, 2020 2:07 am
Ceisiwr wrote: Thu Dec 17, 2020 1:56 am
The problem is that it takes qualities (earth, fire etc) and turns them into “material things”. This forgets that rupa was likely used by the Buddha to mean “image” or “representation” rather than “matter”. It’s also hard to maintain in face of modern atomic theory. Modern atoms, for example, don’t always have nutritive essence and neither do they have temperature (fire). They also aren’t momentarily existent.
Yes, I agree. I feel there is too much focus with rupa as "material things" out there. Rupa to me is at the experiential level on the senses within the body, the sense impressions.
Rūpa-khandha is merely the experience of body (kayo) at contact. This helps to make sense of how we can see the “rise and fall” of it, in light of DN 15 (one of the most important suttas). Of course, even with kayo we need to be careful. Sometimes it means the physical body, other times the mind such as when the Buddha says “he touches the deathless with the body”. Fun fact, in the Upanishads kayo could mean the physical body or the Atman.
Paññaṃ nappamajjeyya, saccamanurakkheyya, cāgamanubrūheyya, santimeva so sikkheyyā’ti
“One should not neglect wisdom, should preserve truth, cultivate relinquishment and train for peace.”

Dhātuvibhaṅga Sutta
skandha
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Re: Kalāpa in the Four Nikāyas

Post by skandha »

Ceisiwr wrote: Thu Dec 17, 2020 2:11 am
skandha wrote: Thu Dec 17, 2020 2:07 am
Ceisiwr wrote: Thu Dec 17, 2020 1:56 am
The problem is that it takes qualities (earth, fire etc) and turns them into “material things”. This forgets that rupa was likely used by the Buddha to mean “image” or “representation” rather than “matter”. It’s also hard to maintain in face of modern atomic theory. Modern atoms, for example, don’t always have nutritive essence and neither do they have temperature (fire). They also aren’t momentarily existent.
Yes, I agree. I feel there is too much focus with rupa as "material things" out there. Rupa to me is at the experiential level on the senses within the body, the sense impressions.
Rūpa-khandha is merely the experience of body (kayo) at contact. This helps to make sense of how we can see the “rise and fall” of it, in light of DN 15 (one of the most important suttas). Of course, even with kayo we need to be careful. Sometimes it means the physical body, other times the mind such as when the Buddha says “he touches the deathless with the body”. Fun fact, in the Upanishads kayo could mean the physical body or the Atman.
The body (kayo) is often used to represent a collection of the whole five aggregates or combination of parts of the five aggregates.

Thanks for the fun fact of Atma kaya.
Form is like a lump of foam, Feeling like a water bubble; Perception is like a mirage, Volitions like a plantain trunk, and consciousness like an illusion
- SN 22.95
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