The causes for wisdom

An open and inclusive investigation into Buddhism and spiritual cultivation

Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Feb 07, 2013 6:59 pm

robertk wrote:I was reading something Sujin Boriharnwanaket says that makes a lot of sense to me.
She said that one can have subtle craving for kusala and that shifts one away from the present:

"
If one thinks that one should rather have objects other than the present one, since these appear to be more wholesome, one will never study the object which appears now. And how can one know their true nature when there is no study, no awareness of them? So it must be the present object, only what appears now. This is more difficult because it is not the object of desire. If desire can move one away to another object, that object satisfies one's desire. Desire is there all the time. If there is no understanding of lobha as lobha, how can it be eradicated? One has to understand different degrees of realities, also lobha which is more subtle, otherwise one does not know when there is lobha. Seeing things as they are. Lobha is lobha. Usually one does not see the subtle lobha which moves one away from developing right understanding of the present object."

And, of course, no teacher I know of would disagree with that.

But what I have never understood is why the KS followers appear think that they are the only ones who have thought deeply about these issues, that they are the only ones whose choice of approach is less susceptible to these problems, and that the rest of the Theravada community has lost it's way.

:anjali:
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby daverupa » Thu Feb 07, 2013 7:05 pm

AN 4.159 wrote:"And yet it is by relying on conceit that conceit is to be abandoned.
    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.
- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Feb 07, 2013 7:06 pm

robertk wrote:
Sujin is saying that even right now if lobha is not understood, especially in regard to the path, then that could hinder progress.
Sure, but the reality is, of course, that greed, hatred, and delusion only come fully to an end with full awakening. In the meantime this is stuff which we have to deal with, even as an ariya shy of full awakening, which is why there is sila and bhāvanā as well as study.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Feb 07, 2013 7:09 pm

daverupa wrote:
AN 4.159 wrote:"And yet it is by relying on conceit that conceit is to be abandoned.
Brilliant. That deserves a lengthy discussion. This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Mr Man » Thu Feb 07, 2013 7:29 pm

mikenz66 wrote:
But what I have never understood is why the KS followers appear think that they are the only ones who have thought deeply about these issues, that they are the only ones whose choice of approach is less susceptible to these problems, and that the rest of the Theravada community has lost it's way.



Hi mikenz66, the ideas originate from ks, possibly it is because of where ks devoloped these ideas. The "where" being Thailand.
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Feb 07, 2013 7:46 pm

Mr Man wrote:
mikenz66 wrote:
But what I have never understood is why the KS followers appear think that they are the only ones who have thought deeply about these issues, that they are the only ones whose choice of approach is less susceptible to these problems, and that the rest of the Theravada community has lost it's way.



Hi mikenz66, the ideas originate from ks, possibly it is because of where ks devoloped these ideas. The "where" being Thailand.
Could you, would you, be kind enough to elaborate on this rather cryptic response?
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Mr Man » Thu Feb 07, 2013 8:02 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
Mr Man wrote:
mikenz66 wrote:
But what I have never understood is why the KS followers appear think that they are the only ones who have thought deeply about these issues, that they are the only ones whose choice of approach is less susceptible to these problems, and that the rest of the Theravada community has lost it's way.



Hi mikenz66, the ideas originate from ks, possibly it is because of where ks devoloped these ideas. The "where" being Thailand.
Could you, would you, be kind enough to elaborate on this rather cryptic response?


It didn't mean to cryptic honest. Possibly because Khun Sujin's ideas where shaped by that environment (Thailand).

There is some paradox here which, considering the subject, is not surprising. The idea that meditation is not for lay people and strong emphasis on developing parami is fairly standard fair but Khun Sujin has kind of turned this on its head with a deep commitment to get to the essence of the teaching in contrast to the possibly superficial religion, which is all around. There is an acceptance of the religion of her culture but also a rejection.

Hopefully my explanation has not caused more confusion tilt.
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Feb 07, 2013 8:11 pm

Mr Man wrote:
It didn't mean to cryptic honest. Possibly because Khun Sujin's ideas where shaped by that environment (Thailand).

There is some paradox here which, considering the subject, is not surprising. The idea that meditation is not for lay people and strong emphasis on developing parami is fairly standard fair but Khun Sujin has kind of turned this on its head with a deep commitment to get to the essence of the teaching in contrast to the possibly superficial religion, which is all around. There is an acceptance of the religion of her culture but also a rejection.

Hopefully my explanation has not caused more confusion tilt.
That was helpful. Thanks.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby SamKR » Thu Feb 07, 2013 9:08 pm

daverupa wrote:
AN 4.159 wrote:"And yet it is by relying on conceit that conceit is to be abandoned.

:clap:
Cannot possibly be more clear than this.

AN 4.159 wrote:"This body, sister, comes into being through food. And yet it is by relying on food that food is to be abandoned.

"This body comes into being through craving. And yet it is by relying on craving that craving is to be abandoned.

"This body comes into being through conceit. And yet it is by relying on conceit that conceit is to be abandoned.

"This body comes into being through sexual intercourse. Sexual intercourse is to be abandoned. With regard to sexual intercourse, the Buddha declares the cutting off of the bridge.
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby polarbuddha101 » Thu Feb 07, 2013 9:27 pm

robertk wrote:Majjima Nikaya 64, we read: "
An untaught, ordinary person ... abides with a mind enslaved by adherence to rules and observances [silabbata-paramasa- pariyutthitena cetasa viharati]."


Unknowingly, many/most efforts we make in the spiritual realm are tied in with this fetter.

It is good to know this, because this knowing will condition dhamma-vicaya(investigation of Dhamma/dhammas) with sammaviriya (right energy) to learn what the right way is.


I'm not sure you have the proper definition of rules and observances. Bowing to statues, using incense, chanting in a dead language, these are rules and observances, rites and rituals, but watching the breath and other forms of meditation are not rituals, they are training methods and there is a big difference.

robertk: There are four types of clinging
(see visuddhimagga xvii 241-3). That of sense desire clinging, wrongview clinging, clinging to rules and
rituals, and lastly self view clinging.


Actually, it is not just clinging to wrong views that must be abandoned but clinging to all views, even right view must be let go of:

"Monks, if you were to adhere to this view — so pure, so bright — if you were to cherish it, treasure it, regard it as 'mine,' would you understand the Dhamma taught as analogous to a raft,[4] for crossing over, not for holding on to?"

"No, lord."

"If you were not to adhere to this view — so pure, so bright — if you were to not to cherish it, not to treasure it, not to regard it as 'mine,' would you understand the Dhamma taught as analogous to a raft, for crossing over, not for holding on to?"

"Yes, lord."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html


:namaste:
"I don't envision a single thing that, when developed & cultivated, leads to such great benefit as the mind. The mind, when developed & cultivated, leads to great benefit."

"I don't envision a single thing that, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about such suffering & stress as the mind. The mind, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about suffering & stress."
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby retrofuturist » Thu Feb 07, 2013 10:03 pm

Greetings,

polarbuddha101 wrote:I'm not sure you have the proper definition of rules and observances. Bowing to statues, using incense, chanting in a dead language, these are rules and observances, rites and rituals, but watching the breath and other forms of meditation are not rituals, they are training methods and there is a big difference.

Regarded purely on the physical level, these are just physical manifestations of movement - no more or less significant than the last.

Therefore, whatever it is that could be used to differentiate them into two discrete classes - "rites and rituals" and "training methods" - is unlikely to be physical either...

So what precisely is the differentiation between "rites and rituals" and "training methods"? Is it defined in the suttas or commentaries, or is it a modern distinction?

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: The causes for wisdom

Postby polarbuddha101 » Thu Feb 07, 2013 10:21 pm

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings,

polarbuddha101 wrote:I'm not sure you have the proper definition of rules and observances. Bowing to statues, using incense, chanting in a dead language, these are rules and observances, rites and rituals, but watching the breath and other forms of meditation are not rituals, they are training methods and there is a big difference.

Regarded purely on the physical level, these are just physical manifestations of movement - no more or less significant than the last.

Therefore, whatever it is that could be used to differentiate them into two discrete classes - "rites and rituals" and "training methods" - is unlikely to be physical either...

So what precisely is the differentiation between "rites and rituals" and "training methods"? Is it defined in the suttas or commentaries, or is it a modern distinction?

Metta,
Retro. :)


I'm just going off my understanding of language, society, what's actually useful and what's superfluous for the most part. But here is this part of a sutta:

"Knowing thus and seeing thus, would you return to the observances, grand ceremonies, & auspicious rites of common contemplatives & brahmans as having any essence?"

"No, lord."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html


Meditation is training to cultivate skillful qualities and need not be accompanied by superfluous actions such as using incense etc.; not that I'm outright dismissing such a thing just that it is unnecessary (empty of anything essential) and not something to be attached to.

EDIT: I do think the Buddha would be a bit displeased with the observances, grand ceremonies, and auspicious rites that have sprang up around the practice of his teachings but that's the way of the world, it was inevitable.

:namaste:
"I don't envision a single thing that, when developed & cultivated, leads to such great benefit as the mind. The mind, when developed & cultivated, leads to great benefit."

"I don't envision a single thing that, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about such suffering & stress as the mind. The mind, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about suffering & stress."
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Mr Man » Thu Feb 07, 2013 11:26 pm

polarbuddha101 wrote:
Meditation is training to cultivate skillful qualities and need not be accompanied by superfluous actions such as using incense etc.; not that I'm outright dismissing such a thing just that it is unnecessary (empty of anything essential) and not something to be attached to.



I think it is fairly easy for (formal) meditation to become empty of anything essential and also somthing that we are attached to. And it is also possible for "rites and rituals" to be a ground for cultivating skillful qualities. It's more about what we bring to these activities and intention. To reassess is a good thing.
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby polarbuddha101 » Thu Feb 07, 2013 11:43 pm

Mr Man wrote:
polarbuddha101 wrote:
Meditation is training to cultivate skillful qualities and need not be accompanied by superfluous actions such as using incense etc.; not that I'm outright dismissing such a thing just that it is unnecessary (empty of anything essential) and not something to be attached to.



I think it is fairly easy for (formal) meditation to become empty of anything essential and also somthing that we are attached to. And it is also possible for "rites and rituals" to be a ground for cultivating skillful qualities. It's more about what we bring to these activities and intention. To reassess is a good thing.


I basically agree. But the difference being that meditation is the explicit act of or attempt at cultivating skillful qualities and abandoning unskillful ones whereas rites and rituals function as such only insofar as one undertakes them with a meditative mindset or wholesome mind state and without wrong views about what they can accomplish.

I'm not trying to say that buddhist rites and rituals should be eradicated either, I don't even think that's possible anyway, I'm just saying that they're unnecessary and weren't undertaken in the time of the Buddha as far as I know. The rites and rituals that grew up around the vast wealth that is the buddha's teaching is comparable to a pinch of salt in the river ganges, I'll gladly drink the water.

:anjali:
"I don't envision a single thing that, when developed & cultivated, leads to such great benefit as the mind. The mind, when developed & cultivated, leads to great benefit."

"I don't envision a single thing that, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about such suffering & stress as the mind. The mind, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about suffering & stress."
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Dan74 » Fri Feb 08, 2013 12:04 am

polarbuddha101 wrote:
Mr Man wrote:
polarbuddha101 wrote:
Meditation is training to cultivate skillful qualities and need not be accompanied by superfluous actions such as using incense etc.; not that I'm outright dismissing such a thing just that it is unnecessary (empty of anything essential) and not something to be attached to.



I think it is fairly easy for (formal) meditation to become empty of anything essential and also somthing that we are attached to. And it is also possible for "rites and rituals" to be a ground for cultivating skillful qualities. It's more about what we bring to these activities and intention. To reassess is a good thing.


I basically agree. But the difference being that meditation is the explicit act of or attempt at cultivating skillful qualities and abandoning unskillful ones whereas rites and rituals function as such only insofar as one undertakes them with a meditative mindset or wholesome mind state and without wrong views about what they can accomplish.

I'm not trying to say that buddhist rites and rituals should be eradicated either, I don't even think that's possible anyway, I'm just saying that they're unnecessary and weren't undertaken in the time of the Buddha as far as I know. The rites and rituals that grew up around the vast wealth that is the buddha's teaching is comparable to a pinch of salt in the river ganges, I'll gladly drink the water.

:anjali:


In a sense what you term rites and rituals can serve as a bridge between meditation and "everyday life" in that it is easier to bring a spacious clarity of meditation into a well-rehearsed activity like that than to face the "darts and arrows" in the same spirit.

Of course there are many other good reasons for performing them too. But since we are on the subject of meditation...
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Feb 08, 2013 12:46 am

Greetings Dan,

Dan74 wrote:In a sense what you term rites and rituals can serve as a bridge between meditation and "everyday life" in that it is easier to bring a spacious clarity of meditation into a well-rehearsed activity like that than to face the "darts and arrows" in the same spirit.

Of course there are many other good reasons for performing them too. But since we are on the subject of meditation...

Well actually, the topic is about "the causes for wisdom".

Since "attachment to rites and rituals" (as compared to say, "absence of meditation") is one of the three fetters that binds us to avijja (ignorance) and prevents stream-entry, possibly it's a more important (and less beaten to death) subject of discussion on a topic addressing "the causes for wisdom".

The topic, and forum in general, needn't always be framed as a relentless defense of sitting meditation and people's chosen practices (as it has been for much of the last 18 pages of discussion).

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: The causes for wisdom

Postby Alex123 » Fri Feb 08, 2013 1:22 am

robertk wrote:Sujin is saying that even right now if lobha is not understood, especially in regard to the path, then that could hinder progress.


Lobha is fully understood by anagami who becomes an arhat (or at arahattamaggaphala). So don't put the cart in front of the horse. I don't know about you, but this is way above my level to worry about.
"dust to dust...."
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Alex123 » Fri Feb 08, 2013 1:29 am

robertk wrote:Majjima Nikaya 64, we read: "
An untaught, ordinary person ... abides with a mind enslaved by adherence to rules and observances [silabbata-paramasa- pariyutthitena cetasa viharati]."

Unknowingly, many/most efforts we make in the spiritual realm are tied in with this fetter.


In Ancient India there were rites and rituals such as ox-duty ascetism and such. Not many people do this. Not everyone believes in facing east and lighting special stick of incense as real aid to enlightenment during meditation.


It is strange that the Buddha would teach something that hinders awaking in his own path, don't you think?
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Feb 08, 2013 1:31 am

retrofuturist wrote:
The topic, and forum in general, needn't always be framed as a relentless defense of sitting meditation and people's chosen practices (as it has been for much of the last 18 pages of discussion).
Except the problem is that the "causes of wisdom" as being advocated by robertk in this thread violates the TOS: "There are a broad spectrum of approaches to, and interpretations of, the Dhamma. Please refrain from wholesale dismissal of a particular view, approach, or teaching style ," and sitting meditation is worth the defense.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: The causes for wisdom

Postby Dan74 » Fri Feb 08, 2013 2:30 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Dan,

Dan74 wrote:In a sense what you term rites and rituals can serve as a bridge between meditation and "everyday life" in that it is easier to bring a spacious clarity of meditation into a well-rehearsed activity like that than to face the "darts and arrows" in the same spirit.

Of course there are many other good reasons for performing them too. But since we are on the subject of meditation...

Well actually, the topic is about "the causes for wisdom".



Paul, I am probably not in the mood for your sense of humour but people were discussing rites and ritual - so why the seemingly smartarse comment?

retrofuturist wrote:Since "attachment to rites and rituals" (as compared to say, "absence of meditation") is one of the three fetters that binds us to avijja (ignorance) and prevents stream-entry, possibly it's a more important (and less beaten to death) subject of discussion on a topic addressing "the causes for wisdom".

And here you go!

If someone is performing a ritual, does it mean (s)he is attached? And if so, could it still be useful before stream-entry?


The topic, and forum in general, needn't always be framed as a relentless defense of sitting meditation and people's chosen practices (as it has been for much of the last 18 pages of discussion).

Metta,
Retro. :)


A long time ago I was debating with Tilt, unable to understand his seemingly vehement attack on Mahayana sectarianism and particularly the term "Hinayana". Then he shared that due to this sectarian propaganda, to effectively slander, the avenue of exploring Theravada remained closed to him for some time. In essence he was denied an opportunity to explore this amazing tradition. A travesty, wouldn't you agree?

I think all ill-informed attacks on a tradition, a lineage or practice, do precisely that - misinform and deny people an opportunity to explore through slander. I am not defensive about my chosen practice - you are reading me entirely wrong. After 10 years I am completely at home with it. Any inadequacies are my own. But I think it is a good idea to correct misinformation and sectarianism when we see it. I try to do the same within my chosen tradition too.
_/|\_
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