I believe that the classical Theravada path is the only correct interpretation of the Pali Canon (I'm flexible on flux and a few other points, but other than that, it's pretty clearly a straightforward detailed explanation of what the Buddha taught).
Therefore, I see the Mahayana ideas that go this route (and only those ideas, not all Mahayana fit this bill) as essentially heterodox extrapolations that negate the Pali Canon entirely by using logic to circumvent it's teachings. This brings into one line of thought the Mahayana and the secular arguments against Buddhism, as both are merely extrapolations that turn the Buddha's teachings against the religion itself and invalidate all of Buddhism.
Basically I've lost faith due to following logic. It happens to be Mahayana, but their logic is self refuting and makes literally all of Buddhism pointless, and logic that disproves the faith is, for all intents and purposes, secular.
I want to get back to my old practice that I've been doing for nearly twenty years now, but that I've come to see as pointless.
The Mahayana have many treatises to ostensibly prove their superiority and disprove classical Theravada (and extremely strangely, all of Buddhism). Are there any such things in the Theravada that do the reverse? Have any authors in history written in defense of orthodox Theravada on this topic?
What advice would any classical Theravada adherents give me to get back on the path?
Treatises or other writings would be great! I'd also appreciate personal posts that defend the classical Theravada position on this topic. Any other advice also would be welcome, but logic to fight logic seems like a straightforward solution.
If you're formulating a rebuttal of the classical position and are about to challenge the classical Theravada position in some way, please read the bottom of this post. Everyone else, the post ends here
Please and thank you!
I've no interest in people trying to teach me how Suttanta or Mahayana points are correct and the classical Theravada position is wrong. Further, this type of post that challenges the classical position is not allowed in this sub forum, so please keep these feelings to yourselves.
The Abhidhamma and Classical Theravada sub-forums are specialized venues for the discussion of the Abhidhamma and the classical Mahavihara understanding of the Dhamma. Within these forums the Pali Tipitaka and its commentaries are for discussion purposes treated as authoritative. These forums are for the benefit of those members who wish to develop a deeper understanding of these texts and are not for the challenging of the Abhidhamma and/or Theravada commentarial literature.
Posts should, where appropriate, include support from a reference or a citation (Tipitaka, commentarial, or from a later work from an author representative of the Classical point-of-view).
Posts that contain personal opinions and conjecture, points of view arrived at from meditative experiences, conversations with devas, blind faith in the supreme veracity of one's own teacher's point of view etc. are all regarded as off-topic, and as such, will be subject to moderator review and/or removal.
-Guidelines for the Classical Theravada Sub Forum
This site is mostly Suttanta, and Suttanta is generally in agreement with one or more Mahayana points that do not exist in classical Theravada, or that directly refute or seek to disprove a classical Theravada position. Since most users are Suttanta, it seems they don't even realize they are refuting the classical positions. The orthodox, on this site, is considered the heretic. Hence, nearly every classical Theravada post that I make has some Suttanta adherent trying to convince me or others that the classical position is wrong. I can see where this is not always deliberate, as some users probably don't even know that they are not supposed to challenge the classical position in this subforum, and, perhaps more often, do not even know that their position is not the classical position that has defined Theravada for millennia. Nevertheless, this is the one place where classical Theravada is considered correct and authoritative, and where Suttanta or Mahayana or other proselytizing is disallowed, as is challenging the classical position(s). Please respect that.
I've also zero interest in people trying to teach me how Mahayana is the correct understanding and that it never negates or disproves Buddhism (the Heart Sutra alone is nearly impossible to get around on this issue, to say nothing of the mountains of other texts that support this reading). Regardless of the correctness or incorrectness of my assumptions on the Mahayana, I am looking for renewal of faith in classical Theravada and nothing else.