Nama-rupa Confusion

Discussion of Satipatthana bhavanā and Vipassana bhavana.

Nama-rupa Confusion

Postby Uilium » Mon Jan 28, 2013 4:30 pm

Why do I hear namarupa means "name & form" or "mind&form(body)? How does name relate to mind here? Something about the consepts mind gives objects? I have confusion here...Perhaps I have realized it through experience but have not realized it intellectually yet? Is that possible?
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Re: Nama-rupa Confusion

Postby polarbuddha101 » Mon Jan 28, 2013 10:30 pm

"And what is name-&-form? What is the origination of name-&-form? What is the cessation of name-&-form? What is the way of practice leading to the cessation of name-&-form?

"Feeling, perception, intention, contact, & attention: This is called name. The four great elements, and the form dependent on the four great elements: This is called form. This name & this form are called name-&-form.

"From the origination of consciousness comes the origination of name-&-form. From the cessation of consciousness comes the cessation of name-&-form. And the way of practice leading to the cessation of name-&-form is just this very noble eightfold path: right view, right resolve, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, right concentration.


http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
"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: Nama-rupa Confusion

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Jan 28, 2013 10:34 pm

Greetings Uilium,

You've asked a tricky, yet important question... there are two main interpretations of nama-rupa - each with vastly different connotations.

For the phenomenological "name and form" interpretation, I recommend the writings of Bhikkhu Nanananda, Nanavira, and the sutta quoted above by Polar Buddha.

For the ontological "mentality and materiality" interpretation, well... I'll let someone who subscribes to that interpretation recommend you something. :)

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


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)
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Re: Nama-rupa Confusion

Postby SDC » Mon Jan 28, 2013 10:55 pm

Mind - Venerable Punnaji

Skip to 6:58 in this talk.

I hope this helps. :smile:
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Re: Nama-rupa Confusion

Postby polarbuddha101 » Mon Jan 28, 2013 11:05 pm

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Uilium,

You've asked a tricky, yet important question... there are two main interpretations of nama-rupa - each with vastly different connotations.

For the phenomenological "name and form" interpretation, I recommend the writings of Bhikkhu Nanananda, Nanavira, and the sutta quoted above by Polar Buddha.

For the ontological "mentality and materiality" interpretation, well... I'll let someone who subscribes to that interpretation recommend you something. :)

Metta,
Retro. :)


If you could provide some links to writings by Nanananda bhikkhu and Nanavira on name and form I would appreciate it. For now, I'll keep searching access to insight and see if I stumble across them.

EDIT: Also, in light of the Kaccayanagotta Sutta, I would have to agree that the phenomenological interpretation is more likely to be the one the Buddha intended. 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: Nama-rupa Confusion

Postby SarathW » Tue Jan 29, 2013 1:58 am

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Re: Nama-rupa Confusion

Postby Sylvester » Tue Jan 29, 2013 3:15 am

Everytime SN 12.15 is pressed into the service of criticising "ontological" approaches to experience, I wonder how one is supposed to explain away SN 22.62 which ends with the loud declaration that one ought to make correct ontic commitments when dealing with experience, so as to be able to clearly note the existential status of an experience -

62 (10) Pathways of Language

Setting at Såvatth¥. “Bhikkhus, there are these three pathways of language, pathways
of designation, pathways of description, that are unmixed, that were never mixed, that
are not being mixed, that will not be mixed, that are not rejected by wise recluses and
brahmins. What three?

“Whatever form, bhikkhus, has passed, ceased, changed: the term, label, and
description ‘was’ applies to it, not the term ‘is’ or the term ‘will be.’

“Whatever feeling … Whatever perception … Whatever volitional constructions …

Whatever consciousness has passed, ceased, changed: the term, label, and description
‘was’ applies to it, not the term ‘is’ or the term ‘will be.’
“Whatever form, bhikkhus, has not arisen, has not become manifest: the term, label,
and description ‘will be’ applies to it, not the term ‘is’ or the term ‘was.’

“Whatever feeling … Whatever perception … Whatever volitional constructions …
15 Whatever consciousness has not arisen, has not become manifest: the term, label, and
description ‘will be’ applies to it, not the term ‘is’ or the term ‘was.’

“Whatever form, bhikkhus, has arisen, has become manifest: the term, label, and
description ‘is’ applies to it, not the term ‘was’ or the term ‘will be.’

“Whatever feeling … Whatever perception … Whatever volitional constructions …

20 Whatever consciousness has arisen, has become manifest: the term, label, and description
‘is’ applies to it, not the term ‘was’ or the term ‘will be.’

“These, bhikkhus, are the three pathways of language, pathways of designation, path
ways of description, that are unmixed, that were never mixed, that are not being mixed,
that will not be mixed, that are not rejected by wise recluses and brahmins.

25 “Bhikkhus, even Vassa and Bañña of Ukkalå, proponents of non-causality, of the
inefficacy of action, and of nihilism, did not think that these three pathways of language,
pathways of designation, pathways of description should be criticized or scorned. For what
reason? From fear of blame, attack, ridicule, and condemnation.”


The so-called "pathways of language, pathways of designation, pathways of description" (niruttipathā adhivacanapathā paññattipathā) are described also in DN 15, where nāmarūpa together with viññāṇa are said to provide such pathways by which there is the sphere of discernment (paññāvacara).

I would really suggest that before we foist a modern or post-modern Western lens on the 2 verbs atthi and n'atthi in SN 12.15 (nominalised into atthitā and n'atthitā), at least exhaust the historical analyses done by the experts on Vedic and non-Vedic antecedents to the Buddha. Kalupahana, for one, draws out and identifies from the pre-Buddhist literature, the targets of the Buddha's critique of the atthitā and n'atthitā philosophies (see Causality : the Central Philosophy of Buddhism, Caps I and II).

Based on Kalupahana's discussion, it would appear that the 2 rival strands of pre-Buddhist philosophies were not discussing ontology as a primary focus, but atthitā in the sense of "Being" and n'atthitā in the sense of "No-Being". This reduces itself neatly into the classical categories of Eternalism and Annihilationism offered by the Commentaries.
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Re: Nama-rupa Confusion

Postby SarathW » Tue Jan 29, 2013 3:40 am

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