Ingram, et al - "Hard Core Dharma" & claims of attainment

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Ingram, et al - "Hard Core Dharma" & claims of attainment

Postby tiltbillings » Tue Jan 27, 2009 10:26 am

This thread is for the discussion of the so-called "hard core Dharma" and the claims of attainment. It is several threads on these topics that have been merged.
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Daniel M. Ingram - Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby upekkha » Thu Mar 05, 2009 5:38 pm

Hello fellows,
This is bound to be a thread which will "spice" things up.

I have stumbled upon the website of an MD from the US who claims to be an arahant, at first glance i dismissed it.
Some weeks later I stumbled upon it again googling "nirodha samapatti", and he seems to give detailed descriptions of how it is entered, exited, etc, from personal experience.

In any case, after reading the book written by this man, I became thoroughly convinced he is speaking from actual personal experience.

the book is available freely here: http://www.interactivebuddha.com/mctb.shtml

Though it is indeed very uncommon for meditators in our day and age to talk about attainments, he claims during the time of the Buddha himself there were no such taboos, obviously starting with Gotama himself, who named himself "The Awakened One", and in the texts themselves attainments are thoroughly discussed.

This man also breaks the taboo that enlightenment is extremely impossible, or that it is only attained by people who have renounced the house hold life.

He has practiced according to the teaching of the late Venerable Mahasi Sayadaw from Burma (noting practice).

I highly recommend reading his book, and/or listening to these 'podcasts' in which he was interviewed, which I found to be very, very, helpful.

Podcast 1 / 3 ("You can do it!"): http://personallifemedia.com/podcasts/2 ... 20-do/play
Podcast 2 ("Enlightened teachers"): http://personallifemedia.com/podcasts/2 ... tened/play
Podcast 3 ("Models of enlightenment"): http://personallifemedia.com/podcasts/2 ... odels/play

'An essay about arahats' - http://www.interactivebuddha.com/arahats.shtml

I recommend that those wanting to listen to this podcast skip the first minute, which is basically some commercials by a sponsor of the 'radio'.

To those wanting to comment on this thread, you are certainly welcome to do so, but be aware that if you haven't read some of the book, or preferably listened to the 3 podcasts, you will be lacking much of the 'juice'.

be happy :)

I am an arahat with mastery of the formed jhanas, formless realms, Nirodha Samapatti, and a few other traditional attainments.

I am one of the few teachers I know of who will talk about high-level practice directly and unambiguously without relying on dogma, making things taboo or coating simple truths in mystery. I assume that most practitioners are mature enough to handle straight-forward and honest answers. My fundamental assumption is that many more people will be empowered to realize that they can master these things if they are out in the open.

I am interested in spiritual awakening, green building, medicine, dance, yoga, gardening, car repair, travel, music, poetry, and living a fun and useful life. Current projects include helping with the Dharma Overground, building a strawbale house, and learning about permaculture.

I draw primarily from the teachings of the Buddha as they have come down to us in the various traditions, particularly the Theravada, and have trained under teachers from all the major Buddhist traditions over the last 11 years. Within the Theravada, my primary influence is the Mahasi Sayadaw tradition of insight meditation from Burma, and I have been given permission to teach by Sayadaw U Pandita, Junior in that lineage.
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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Thu Mar 05, 2009 6:42 pm

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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby nathan » Thu Mar 05, 2009 9:39 pm

Daniel Ingram and now also Kenneth Folk are two people who speak of 'having set down the burden' and along with many other knowledgeable and longstanding practitioners of several buddhist traditions are of the thinking that there is a benefit to a forum for free and open discussion about the path of practice. I think that this is a good thing. It seems that this is not a main focus for Dhamma Wheel so it is good that there is this other forum for such discussions and it is probably most accommodating to all who share this forum to do our best to respect all of Theravada tradition that is in keeping with the Dhamma and Vinaya of the Buddha. Most monastic traditions including most Theravada traditions do not discuss accomplishments and full awakening from the point of view of having accomplished the full awakening with lay followers and I can see the wisdom in this. I do not think that this noble silence means there is any dearth of well accomplished bhikkhus in the Theravada tradition. It is simply another practice, one more thing to let go off, the raft itself.

But many need help finding the raft and with keeping it afloat. Most of the practitioners on the Dhamma Overground forum are not constrained by the rules which are in effect for many ordained bhikkus but still many are very sincere and faithful to their teachings, most are either traditional lay followers or those with a strong secular interest. The aims are specific, well focused and well pursued in this environment which they have developed for that purpose. There is now strong support for a vigorous and energetic practice for those who are keen to make good progress with samatha-vipassana.

If you have questions for these gentlemen I suggest you ask your questions directly. If you are clear and polite in your address I am quite sure that they would be happy to answer any of your questions directly. There is now this forum for discussing practice, primarily vipassana, which serves the purpose of being a place for discussing practices, the experience of practices and accomplishments of practices:


Dhamma Overground
http://dharmaoverground.wetpaint.com/

Dharma Overground Homepage
The Dharma Overground is a resource for the support of hardcore meditation practice. It is a place where everything related to the support of practice may flourish, including where to go on retreats, what techniques may lead to what, an in depth look at the maps of possible states and stages, discussions about how to determine what experience was what, and in general anything that has to do with actually practicing rather than what typically occurs in standard meditation circles.
But whoever walking, standing, sitting, or lying down overcomes thought, delighting in the stilling of thought: he's capable, a monk like this, of touching superlative self-awakening. § 110. {Iti 4.11; Iti 115}
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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby Ben » Thu Mar 05, 2009 10:31 pm

With all due respect to Mr Ingram, its not my cup of tea.
I think there is a bit more than dogma behind the embargo of ariyans declaring their attainment. It seems to me, through my own inconsequential experience, but also the experiences of other people who have walked on the path, is that humility seems to be a bi-product of progress.
For those of you who find inspiration in Mr Ingram's words, I wish you every success.
Metta

Ben
Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.

Taṃ nadīhi vijānātha:
sobbhesu padaresu ca,
saṇantā yanti kusobbhā,
tuṇhīyanti mahodadhī.

Sutta Nipata 3.725

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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby David N. Snyder » Thu Mar 05, 2009 10:41 pm

Ben wrote:
It seems to me, through my own inconsequential experience, but also the experiences of other people who have walked on the path, is that humility seems to be a bi-product of progress.

I agree. I think the reason the Buddha mentions that he is fully awakened is because the Dhamma had died-out and he was restoring the Dhamma. But now we are in his dispensation and there is no need to announce attainments and in fact I am sure those with attainments would not have an interest in proclaiming their status either.
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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby upekkha » Fri Mar 06, 2009 12:02 am

hey guys,

I think you are right in the sense that it simply would not be so helpful or even logical in certain ways that such attainments were announced in most householder lineages and even Buddhist sanghas.

Though I find it encouraging that some people are just open about it, It's very good in the sense of being a source of inspiration,

Ben, I was just in London and remembered you recommended "The Quiet Mind" and got a hold of it, I found it quite interesting, specifically the last chapter in which Coleman describes his practice under U Ba Khin,
It was even more interesting because I was browsing through Daniel's book during the same period, and I found that Coleman also describes attaining to a certain stage in the path (that is, having experienced fruition).

Also, when Goenkaji describes later stages of the path, he certainly makes it clear that he is speaking from experience, but when he's asked he prefers to avoid the answer directly.
I understand that it might confuse most people who are at the beginning of the path, but when you see he hints at it directly at certain times it's just obvious..
Same about U Ba Khin.. in the talks I've read he's certainly talking from personal experience..

what do you think?
Last edited by upekkha on Fri Mar 06, 2009 12:39 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby Dhammanando » Fri Mar 06, 2009 12:19 am

Hi Upekkha,

upekkha wrote:'An essay about arahats' - http://www.interactivebuddha.com/arahats.shtml


In which Ingram states:

    In short, the Limted Emotional Range Model, the Limited Possible Action Model, and the Limited Possible Thought Model of enlightenment are all completely off the mark and have nothing to do with actual perception of the Truth of Things.

Since the three "models" dismissed by Ingram constitute most of what the suttas have to say about the character of arahants, the "arahantship" of which he speaks cannot be that taught by the Buddha.

Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu
    ...and this thought arose in the mind of the Blessed One:
    “Who lives without reverence lives miserably.”
    Uruvela Sutta, A.ii.20

    It were endless to dispute upon everything that is disputable.
    — William Penn Some Fruits of Solitude,
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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby upekkha » Fri Mar 06, 2009 12:25 am

Hi Dhammanando,

Well, if I ever become an arahant in this lifetime I'll be sure to let you know which descriptions held up :)

I think anyone who has not realized the entire Dhamma for oneself cannot know what is truth and what is false.. specifically in the matter of what is true about being enlightened.
It is my opinion that the suttas can certainly show us the right direction in which to practice and find out.

Ofcourse that being said, we can only speculate. In regards to the quote.. the models of enlightenment, it certainly makes sense to me that an arahant is not limited in action, thought, etc.. ofcourse you would probably not kill people or do immoral things, not because one is simply limited..
It is supposed to be liberation.. these models such as the limited possible action model, or limited possible thought model sound more like bondage to me.

but that's just my opinion, and I certainly cannot tell you from personal experience.. but some people can.. there are quite a few people who have reached the goal in our day and age,
obviously most won't say it outloud, mostly from practical reasons i believe, they are all over the spiritual map, different traditions etc..
If one is lucky enough to meet such people then you can ask.. or just once when one will become liberated, or enlightened, to some degree or to arahathood, however we call it, those questions will answer themselves :)

TheDhamma,
I think you are right about the Buddha, and also I think the same might apply today because many people believe enlightenment is impossible, or close to impossible, surely not in this lifetime, even many of those who practice.
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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby nathan » Fri Mar 06, 2009 12:42 am

Ben wrote:With all due respect to Mr Ingram, its not my cup of tea.
I think there is a bit more than dogma behind the embargo of ariyans declaring their attainment. It seems to me, through my own inconsequential experience, but also the experiences of other people who have walked on the path, is that humility seems to be a bi-product of progress.
For those of you who find inspiration in Mr Ingram's words, I wish you every success.
Metta

Ben
The Dharma Wheel forum is by no means Dr. Ingram's personal and private domain. He appears to be pleased to deal with all of these personal issues comfortably there. I advise we do likewise, take such questions to him, and not add to anyone's discomforts here or elsewhere unnecessarily. I'm not advocating or endorsing any one persons point of view, anywhere. As a member of several online communities I attempt to foster only respectful and kind hearted discussions where and how it is appropriate and suitable.

The rules and standards for bhikkhu DhammaVinaya are more cautious and particular than any rules for lay followers, frequently because it is the worldly who cause the troubles. In the Buddhas day these standards of purity for bhikkhus were not confused with standards for lay followers and there could be concerns that these are frequently both misunderstood and confused by many now in the time where the Dhamma has been brought into the same open scrutiny as all the rest of the world. I think within the traditions and the lessons learned within them there are ways of doing things that can also stand the tests of time.

In terms of any disciples or followers awakenings there are many other perfections aside from the full awakening which may occur before during or after this; perfections of paramis, faculties, forms of analysis and understanding, capacities and abilities which are not the same as full awakening but also great accomplishments beneficial for the path. While all perfections are expressed in the Buddha, this is not so for ANY of the rest of us and it is up to question what qualities of awakening it may be that we might lack to provide us with the best balance in our lives for a full release from being and becoming. Each for oneself. Aside from that what use is the scrutiny of rules and standards, practices and precepts. I look to all good instruction to fall in line with the rest of the path, the whole path, set out by the Buddha. What falls off that path I hardly take notice of at all because it is not the path I seek to be on. I find purification to be one great task and renunciation to be another. They support each other but are not always practiced at the same time. I would like to think that as a practice these both can be perfected but I also think the degree to which I can purify this wet sack of meat and make it entirely presentable to others is always going to need all the help I can get. This body, mind and life is my burden and it never makes it lighter for me by looking to any other to carry my load. It is enough that I need not carry everyone else's.
:smile:
metta and upekkha
Last edited by nathan on Fri Mar 06, 2009 12:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
But whoever walking, standing, sitting, or lying down overcomes thought, delighting in the stilling of thought: he's capable, a monk like this, of touching superlative self-awakening. § 110. {Iti 4.11; Iti 115}
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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby Ben » Fri Mar 06, 2009 12:55 am

Hi Upekkha

Its been a few years since I read the Quiet Mind and shortly afterwards it went to a friend's home and never returned.
My memory, which isn't infallible, of the book is that I recollect that Coleman describes a meditative experience but i didn't get the impression that he attained or inferred some attainment or the other. My impression was that he gave a very eloquent explanation of the meditative experience.

As for Goenkaji, I remember him replying to one questioner who asked whether he was enlightened with 'no'. When further questioned as to what stage he had reached he suggested his interlocutor to concentrate on getting established in the Dhamma so that he could enjoy the taste of nibbana for himself. I am convinced that Sayagi U Ba Khin and Goenkaji teach from a depth of experience that is far beyond my own experience, but I don't think its particularly useful to either speculate about a teacher's attainment or make it known as it is a distraction from the main game, that is, one's own practice.
Kind regards

Ben
Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.

Taṃ nadīhi vijānātha:
sobbhesu padaresu ca,
saṇantā yanti kusobbhā,
tuṇhīyanti mahodadhī.

Sutta Nipata 3.725

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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby upekkha » Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:00 am

Hi Ben,

I just finished reading it a few days ago,
I can quote it later if you wish but he describes something as (in his own words) "the moment of my enlightenment" and "the experience of nirvana", and describes how U Ba Khin instructed him on how to teach Vipassana to others.. so.. you might have forgotten or missed that part :)
It basically makes much sense to me that U Ba Khin would only authorize people who are highly realized.. or atleast entered the stream.

anywho,
but I don't think its particularly useful to either speculate about a teacher's attainment or make it known as it is a distraction from the main game, that is, one's own practice.


I agree with you on this one. but I think as the Buddha found it useful to proclaim he was enlightened, and so were the other students of his.. same goes for today for me anyway.
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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby nathan » Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:05 am

Dhammanando wrote:
    In short, the Limted Emotional Range Model, the Limited Possible Action Model, and the Limited Possible Thought Model of enlightenment are all completely off the mark and have nothing to do with actual perception of the Truth of Things.

Since the three "models" dismissed by Ingram constitute most of what the suttas have to say about the character of arahants, the "arahantship" of which he speaks cannot be that taught by the Buddha.

Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu
Thank you for making this clear Ven. Dhammanando. It has been my thinking also however I see no merit in taking issue with others over their thinking on this. These models are always limited models next to the teachings on the eightfold path to my conceptions of the teachings and of the nature of a perfect freedom from being and becoming, that is all I know and I long for the release that is free in all ways. It would be most beneficial to have made clear what freedoms pertain to those with the full awakening.
Last edited by nathan on Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:21 am, edited 2 times in total.
But whoever walking, standing, sitting, or lying down overcomes thought, delighting in the stilling of thought: he's capable, a monk like this, of touching superlative self-awakening. § 110. {Iti 4.11; Iti 115}
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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby upekkha » Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:05 am

Hi Bhikkhu Pesala,

The link you posted is full of people flaming and silly ignorant stuff like that.. anyway, some people there seem to be quite logical, and i found this response of Daniel (from 2007, before an open forum was established) quite interesting.

As I have mentioned in similar situation on another blog, if Theravada Buddhism is so unlikely to be effective in your opinions, why follow it? If the most taboo topic is success, doesn't that seem strange? If freedom is actually viewed instead as bondage and limitation, doesn't that strike you as odd? If all things are empty before, aren't they just as empty after? If you unsure of the time of your death, do you want to have spent it practicing and inquiring or acting like juveniles on a junior high school playground?

For those interested in the story about Sayadaw U Pandita, Junior, (not to be confused with Sayadaw U Pandita of Panditarama in Burma, though they are in the same lineage) he was the abbot of the Malaysian Buddhist Meditation Centre in Penang, Malaysia (a Mahasi Center) when I did my last retreat there in April, 2003, and during that time I made very good progress. I told him that I hadn't really taught much for 6 years and was thinking of teaching again. He looked me straight in the eye, and with an unusually loud voice said, "GOOD!" That's the story of getting permission to teach.

Now, it might be mentioned that the Mahasi tradition considers second path to the the minimum requirement to teach. Later, on that same retreat, he told a long story of a monk in Burma, and at the end looked at me (there were only two of us there for that dharma talk), and said, "So, the moral of that story is, don't go around saying you are an arahat or have powers." I failed to follow his advice on that point, and the outcome has been very mixed, as noticed here. Thus, consider that perhaps, just perhaps, you are maligning someone who is, in fact, not completely delusional, and just might actually have some insights, and might actually be enlightened, offenses that traditional Buddhism considers to have karmic consequences. I am not saying don't be reasonably skeptical, but perhaps some sense of basic human respect might be valuable, perhaps even on its own merits.

Anyone interested in talking about meditation? I don't tend to stick around for long on these types of sites if I am not welcome, but I do know a lot that is practical about how to do insight and concentration practices, should someone be interested.


and


If you have any questions or thoughts on them, let me know. I know more than most the full force of how bad an idea it can be to claim the things I do, but so far the bad has been outweighed by the good, in general terms, and it does select for a certain audience of adults that can get over that point and move on to how to practice well. And so you find me here, at nearly 5am, having just worked hard for 12 hours as an attending physician in the 9th busiest trauma referral emergency department in the US, trying to find a few people who care about applying the dharma and mastering what the Buddha said should be mastered and are not freaked out by the concept that it can actually be done and there are those of use who have done it.

I dream of the good old days, when the Buddha and the others sat around talking about these things in straightforward terms, people were open about what they had attained, what strengths they had to offer the community, and everything was very practical and down to earth.

As to following the advice of the wise, as per the other post, in general I did follow his advice with everything I had for around 20-22 hours a day during that retreat. He kept basically asking me to go ahead and finish the thing up, and so I did. Curious that it should be such a source of controversy when all I want to do is help people do exactly the same thing.

Daniel


Further, if you begin to look at what realization entails, the maps are not all the same. There are the limited emotional range models, such as those you speak of, in which the 10 defilements are eliminated progressively in the four paths. There are the limited possible action models, in which enlightened beings progressively seem to lose the ability to engage in very specific and somewhat arbitrary acts, though seem to be able to engage in others, such as eating. Then there are the models that are not so straightforward, such as that found in the Shorter Discourse on Voidness, and these require a more sophisticated understanding to make good sense of, particularly lines such as that relating to the arahat, where it says, "however there remains that suffering inherent in the six sense doors and conditioned by life." And finally we have models that are purely non-dualistic, such as those that say, "In the hearing just the heard, in the seeing just the seen, in the thinking, just the thought," etc.

The problem comes when one actually begins to make progress, and things get tricky once one has completed a second insight cycle and gotten to second path. One begins to notice: "cycling effortlessly through the ñanas occurs, Fruitions occur, my understanding of ultimate reality is far beyond those who have not come this far, my direct perception of the Three Characteristics is far beyond those who have not come this far, and so clearly I have attained to insights on that front, let me see what is true relating to the emotions, and investigate is something different, and if so, does if clearly fit the dogma of the standard models, or, if not, what is true?" When one gets to anagami, when one's direct perception of emptiness, luminosity, no-self, impermanence, etc. encompasses naturally and without effort the vast majority of sensate experience, then when one asks that same question, are there still the emotions, and if so, how are they different, then one begins to have to realize that the old texts where they use those models were getting at something, but they do not address it well, or perhaps something is lost in translation, as what is true is that by seeing thoughts as small, transient, part of the field of experience, causal, empty, naturally a part of life, no more and no less, just as they are, then emotions can move through in a way that is very different, much more spacious, clear, clean, quick, precise, not so prone to being contracted into them or identified with them, but that is not quite the same thing as those thoughts and emotions not arising.
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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby Ben » Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:12 am

upekkha wrote:Hi Ben,

I just finished reading it a few days ago,
I can quote it later if you wish but he describes something as (in his own words) "the moment of my enlightenment" and "the experience of nirvana", and describes how U Ba Khin instructed him on how to teach Vipassana to others.. so.. you might have forgotten or missed that part :)
It basically makes much sense to me that U Ba Khin would only authorize people who are highly realized.. or atleast entered the stream.

Yes, quite possibly I forgot that part!

upekkha wrote:anywho,
but I don't think its particularly useful to either speculate about a teacher's attainment or make it known as it is a distraction from the main game, that is, one's own practice.


I agree with you on this one. but I think as the Buddha found it useful to proclaim he was enlightened, and so were the other students of his.. same goes for today for me anyway.

However, we do have within the vinaya the rule that a monk not disclose to a layperson their attainment. While we are not talkng about ordained teachers in this thread, it is my belief that the rule sets a 'golden standard' for behaviour for all. And it seems as though some traditional Buddhist cultures have adopted it. I know of one instance, in Burma, where the declaration by a layperson of sotapanna or other fruition state was punishable by the removal of the right hand. This law was in place until at least the early 20th Century.
Metta

Ben
Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.

Taṃ nadīhi vijānātha:
sobbhesu padaresu ca,
saṇantā yanti kusobbhā,
tuṇhīyanti mahodadhī.

Sutta Nipata 3.725

Compassionate Hands Foundation (Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • Buddhist Global ReliefUNHCR
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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby Dhammanando » Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:14 am

Hi Upekkha,

upekkha wrote:Ofcourse that being said, we can only speculate. In regards to the quote.. the models of enlightenment, it certainly makes sense to me that an arahant is not limited in action, thought, etc.. ofcourse you would probably not kill people or do immoral things, not because one is simply limited..


In the suttas where the Buddha lists the actions that will never be performed by a sotapanna, and in those where he does the same for an arahant, the word he uses is "incapable" (abhabba). If one is incapable of killing, stealing etc., and not merely refraining from these out of choice, then one's range of actions can correctly be termed "limited". The arahant is incapable of these unwholesome actions because he has eliminated the mental causes that would give rise to them.

On the other hand, the arahant also becomes capable of actions that are impossible for a non-arahant, namely, non-kamma-creating beneficial actions that proceed from kiriya-cittas. And so arahantship limits one's range of actions in one respect and expands them in another. Such cittas don't arise in non-arahants.

It is supposed to be liberation..


From defilements and suffering.

these models such as the limited possible action model, or limited possible thought model sound more like bondage to me.


This may have more to do with Ingram's tendentious choice of terms to characterize the models than with the models themselves.

Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu
    ...and this thought arose in the mind of the Blessed One:
    “Who lives without reverence lives miserably.”
    Uruvela Sutta, A.ii.20

    It were endless to dispute upon everything that is disputable.
    — William Penn Some Fruits of Solitude,
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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby upekkha » Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:17 am

oh man that sounds so tough!

must have been set by putthujanas :)

as i said, for me knowing from the experience of others (buddha, his disciples, and others who have attained the same, in whatever time they are living) this just gives much inspiration to go deeper in actual practice.. and thats the best thing one can ever do, all here agree on this i believe.

However, we do have within the vinaya the rule that a monk not disclose to a layperson their attainment. While we are not talkng about ordained teachers in this thread, it is my belief that the rule sets a 'golden standard' for behaviour for all. And it seems as though some traditional Buddhist cultures have adopted it. I know of one instance, in Burma, where the declaration by a layperson of sotapanna or other fruition state was punishable by the removal of the right hand. This law was in place until at least the early 20th Century.
Metta

Ben
Last edited by upekkha on Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:20 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby upekkha » Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:19 am

I respect your opinion on this Dhammanando.

As I said, my belief is that all belief is still speculative until one has attained these states.. so that leaves us in the speculative field.
So if one reaches these stages, one will know for oneself which descriptions in the suttas are more valid.

Dhammanando wrote:Hi Upekkha,

upekkha wrote:Ofcourse that being said, we can only speculate. In regards to the quote.. the models of enlightenment, it certainly makes sense to me that an arahant is not limited in action, thought, etc.. ofcourse you would probably not kill people or do immoral things, not because one is simply limited..


In the suttas where the Buddha lists the actions that will never be performed by a sotapanna, and in those where he does the same for an arahant, the word he uses is "incapable" (abhabba). If one is incapable of killing, stealing etc., and not merely refraining from these out of choice, then one's range of actions can correctly be termed "limited". The arahant is incapable of these unwholesome actions because he has eliminated the mental causes that would give rise to them.

On the other hand, the arahant also becomes capable of actions that are impossible for a non-arahant, namely, non-kamma-creating beneficial actions that proceed from kiriya-cittas. And so arahantship limits one's range of actions in one respect and expands them in another. Such cittas don't arise in non-arahants.

It is supposed to be liberation..


From defilements and suffering.

these models such as the limited possible action model, or limited possible thought model sound more like bondage to me.


This may have more to do with Ingram's tendentious choice of terms to characterize the models than with the models themselves.

Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu
Last edited by upekkha on Fri Mar 06, 2009 4:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby Ben » Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:24 am

From memory the Burmese law was meant to discourage charlatains who would develop a following and harvest their wealth. I came across it in an article written by an elderly monk in the 'Light of the Buddha' a publication that was started in 1955 to commemorate the beginning of the second sasana and the coming together of the sixth Buddhist council in Burma. If you go to http://www.pariyatti.org and go to their treasures page, you should be able to download the entire series of Light of the Buddha and the Light of the Dhamma periodicals. They're well worth it.
Metta

Ben
Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.

Taṃ nadīhi vijānātha:
sobbhesu padaresu ca,
saṇantā yanti kusobbhā,
tuṇhīyanti mahodadhī.

Sutta Nipata 3.725

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Re: Dhamma book written by arahat?

Postby nathan » Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:29 am

upekkha wrote:This stuff has been passed on by so many people, with varying experience and background.
It seems quite clear this 'stuff' was passed on to Arahats, many Arahats and that they codified it and gave it the seal of their authority since which time it has been carefully tended by many fine and capable disciples since. If there are those who are said to be Arahats today then very high standards applying to fully awakened Noble Beings are rightly applied to them and no one appears to stand up to such scrutiny so when we do this we need to be very clear about what it is that we expect to note about such a one. So long as these fine points are made clear I welcome this perspective as it informs me about the teachings without the need to pass judgments on any one else. I would like to know what people have to say about their own practice but I would also like to know what the Sangha bhikkhus of the Theravada tradition have to say about what the teachings teach us as well.
:smile:
But whoever walking, standing, sitting, or lying down overcomes thought, delighting in the stilling of thought: he's capable, a monk like this, of touching superlative self-awakening. § 110. {Iti 4.11; Iti 115}
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