SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Each week we study and discuss a different sutta or Dhamma text

Moderator: mikenz66

SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Dec 28, 2010 1:57 am

SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta: To Anuradha
translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu

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


I have heard that on one occasion the Blessed One was staying near Vesali, in the Great Wood, at the Hall of the Gabled Pavilion. At that time Ven. Anuradha was staying not far from the Blessed One in a wilderness hut.

Then a large number of wandering sectarians went to Ven. Anuradha and on arrival exchanged courteous greetings with him. After an exchange of friendly greetings & courtesies, they sat to one side. As they were sitting there, they said to Ven. Anuradha, "Friend Anuradha, the Tathagata — the supreme man, the superlative man, attainer of the superlative attainment — being described, is described with [one of] these four positions: The Tathagata exists after death, does not exist after death, both does & does not exist after death, neither exists nor does not exist after death."

When this was said, Ven. Anuradha said to the wandering sectarians, "Friends, the Tathagata — the supreme man, the superlative man, attainer of the superlative attainment — being described, is described otherwise than with these four positions: The Tathagata exists after death, does not exist after death, both does & does not exist after death, neither exists nor does not exist after death."

When this was said, the wandering sectarians said to Ven. Anuradha, "This monk is either a newcomer, not long gone forth, or else an elder who is foolish & inexperienced." So the wandering sectarians, addressing Ven. Anuradha as they would a newcomer or a fool, got up from their seats and left.

Then not long after the wandering sectarians had left, this thought occurred to Ven. Anuradha: "If I am questioned again by those wandering sectarians, how will I answer in such a way that will I speak in line with what the Blessed One has said, will not misrepresent the Blessed One with what is unfactual, will answer in line with the Dhamma, so that no one whose thinking is in line with the Dhamma will have grounds for criticizing me?"

Then Ven. Anuradha went to the Blessed One and on arrival, having bowed down to the Blessed One, sat to one side. As he was sitting there he said to the Blessed One: "Just now I was staying not far from the Blessed One in a wilderness hut. Then a large number of wandering sectarians came and... said to me, 'Friend Anuradha, the Tathagata — the supreme man, the superlative man, attainer of the superlative attainment — being described, is described with [one of] these four positions: The Tathagata exists after death, does not exist after death, both does & does not exist after death, neither exists nor does not exist after death.'

"When this was said, I said to them, 'Friends, the Tathagata — the supreme man, the superlative man, attainer of the superlative attainment — being described, is described otherwise than with these four positions: The Tathagata exists after death, does not exist after death, both does & does not exist after death, neither exists nor does not exist after death.'

"When this was said, the wandering sectarians said to me, 'This monk is either a newcomer, not long gone forth, or else an elder who is foolish & inexperienced.' So, addressing me as they would a newcomer or a fool, they got up from their seats and left.

"Then not long after the wandering sectarians had left, this thought occurred to me: 'If I am questioned again by those wandering sectarians, how will I answer in such a way that will I speak in line with what the Blessed One has said, will not misrepresent the Blessed One with what is unfactual, will answer in line with the Dhamma, and no one whose thinking is in line with the Dhamma will have grounds for criticizing me?'"

"What do you think, Anuradha: Is form constant or inconstant?"

"Inconstant, lord."

"And is that which is inconstant easeful or stressful?"

"Stressful, lord."

"And is it proper to regard what is inconstant, stressful, subject to change as: 'This is mine. This is my self. This is what I am'?"

"No, lord."

"Is feeling constant or inconstant?"

"Inconstant, lord."...

"Is perception constant or inconstant?"

"Inconstant, lord."...

"Are fabrications constant or inconstant?"

"Inconstant, lord."...

"Is consciousness constant or inconstant?

"Inconstant, lord."

"And is that which is inconstant easeful or stressful?"

"Stressful, lord."

"And is it proper to regard what is inconstant, stressful, subject to change as: 'This is mine. This is my self. This is what I am'?"

"No, lord."

"What do you think, Anuradha: Do you regard form as the Tathagata?"

"No, lord."

"Do you regard feeling as the Tathagata?"

"No, lord."

"Do you regard perception as the Tathagata?"

"No, lord."

"Do you regard fabrications as the Tathagata?"

"No, lord."

"Do you regard consciousness as the Tathagata?"

"No, lord."

"What do you think, Anuradha: Do you regard the Tathagata as being in form?... Elsewhere than form?... In feeling?... Elsewhere than feeling?... In perception?... Elsewhere than perception?... In fabrications?... Elsewhere than fabrications?... In consciousness?... Elsewhere than consciousness?"

"No, lord."

"What do you think: Do you regard the Tathagata as form-feeling-perception-fabrications-consciousness?"

"No, lord."

"Do you regard the Tathagata as that which is without form, without feeling, without perception, without fabrications, without consciousness?"

"No, lord."

"And so, Anuradha — when you can't pin down the Tathagata as a truth or reality even in the present life — is it proper for you to declare, 'Friends, the Tathagata — the supreme man, the superlative man, attainer of the superlative attainment — being described, is described otherwise than with these four positions: The Tathagata exists after death, does not exist after death, both does & does not exist after death, neither exists nor does not exist after death'?"

"No, lord."

"Very good, Anuradha. Very good. Both formerly & now, it is only stress that I describe, and the cessation of stress."

See also: The suttas in the Avyakata Samyutta.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... l#avyakata
User avatar
mikenz66
 
Posts: 10536
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Dec 28, 2010 2:02 am

SN 22.86 PTS: S iii 116 CDB i 936
Anuraadho Sutta: Anuraadha is Caught Out
translated from the Pali by Maurice O'Connell Walshe

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

[The Ven. Anuraadha, dwelling alone in a forest hut, is quizzed by wanderers of another sect. He takes his problem to the Buddha, who is staying at Vesali:] "I am staying, Lord, in a forest hut not far away. Now a number of wanderers of another sect came to me... and said: 'Friend Anuraadha, a Tathaagata, a superman, a man supreme, one who has gained the Highest, must be describable in [one of] four ways: a Tathaagata comes to be after death; he does not come to be after death; he both comes to be and does not come to be after death; he neither comes to be nor does not come to be after death.'[1] To this Lord, I replied...: 'A Tathaagata can be described otherwise than in these four ways...' At my reply the wanderers of another sect said: 'This monk must be a novice, not long ordained, or if he is an elder, he is an ignorant fool.' Then the wanderers, abusing me as a novice and a fool, got up and went away. Soon after they had left, Lord, I thought: 'If these wanderers were to ply me with further questions,[2] how should I answer them so as to express correctly the Blessed One's standpoint without misrepresentation, in accordance with the true doctrine, so that no follower of his teacher would incur reproach?'"

"Now what do you think Anuraadha, is the body permanent or impermanent?"

"Impermanent, Lord."...

"Well then, Anuraadha, do you equate the Tathaagata with his body,[3]... feelings,... perceptions,... mental formations,... consciousness?"[4]

"No indeed, Lord."

"Do you consider he has no body,... feelings,... perceptions,... mental formations,... consciousness?"

"No indeed, Lord."

"Then, Anuraadha, since in this very life the Tathaagata is not to be regarded as really and truly existing, is it proper for you to declare of him: 'Friends, he who is a Tathaagata... can be described otherwise than in these four ways...'?"[5]

"No indeed, Lord."

"Good, good, Anuraadha. As before, so now I proclaim just suffering and the ceasing of suffering."

Notes

1. The fourfold division of Indian Logic: a thing (1) is, (2) is not, (3) both is and is not, (4) neither is nor is not.

2. Or: "were to ask me the same question again."

3. Here, as in other similar passages, SA [SN commentary] glosses Tathaagata (SN 12.15, n. 10 [http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn12/sn12.015.wlsh.html#fn-10]) with satta "a being," to the confusion of scholars. The point seems to be that even in this life any "being," and not merely the Tathaagata, is only real in terms of conventional, not of ultimate truth (see SN 1.20, n. 8 [http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn01/sn01.020.wlsh.html#fn-8]). The difference lies in what happens after death.

4. The identification of a person with "consciousness" is strongly condemned by the Buddha's rebuke to "Saati the fisherman's son" in MN 38 [http://www.mahindarama.com/e-tipitaka/Majjhima-Nikaya/mn-38.htm].

5. Anuraadha was of course wrong to say that a Tathaagata can be described otherwise than in one of these four ways, since he cannot after death be described at all. He would have been right to deny that any one of the four ways of description (n. 1) was correct, but not to suggest that there is any other possible description. We may note that the "wanderers of another sect" were obviously extremely well informed about the Buddha's teaching (even though they did not really understand it!), and laid a careful trap for Anuraadha. They had the terminology off pat, and were only too ready to pounce on a seeming weakness.
User avatar
mikenz66
 
Posts: 10536
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Dec 28, 2010 5:41 am

I like the understated insults in this Sutta. In the Nanamoli/Bodhi translation:
The those wanderers of other sects, having denigrated the Venerable Anuradha with the terms "newly ordained" and "fool", rose from their seats and departed.

:anjali:
Mike
User avatar
mikenz66
 
Posts: 10536
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Dec 28, 2010 9:53 pm

I've read this sutta before, but it had not fully registered that the "wanderers of other sects" were actually correct to criticise Ven Anuradha's answer. I recall a few other suttas where Bhikkhus give the wrong answer, and are corrected by the Buddha, and also a few where they don't know the answer, and have to ask.

Assignment: Provide some references to suttas where the Buddha corrects or provides an answer.

:anjali:
Mike
User avatar
mikenz66
 
Posts: 10536
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby phil » Tue Dec 28, 2010 11:45 pm

Hi Mike and all



This sutta is kind of timely for me, as you might have seen at DSG before I left (not sure you still go there) I have been struggling with what I consider to be a premature move of understanding on the part of some people there to insist that people don't exist.. I feel we have to grow very gradually into that kind of understanding - very, very, very gradually. So while in meditation practice one (not me at this point) may develop understanding of the characteristics of conditioned elements like in this sutta, I personally feel that contact with this kind of sutta (and of course Abhidhamma) can push people into trying to go too far with casual statements of ultimate non-existence of beings etc. Of course not denying the great treasure that this teaching is, just that in my opinion we are sometimes too eager to get our grubby paws all over the treasure. On the other hand, maybe I am lazy about pushing understanding deeper...I certainly love reading suttas in SN 22 and SN 35, which are almost all of this nature, but when I read them I kind of read from a very respectful distance...

This is just my "problem", I think, though I wouldn't call it a problem....

p.s I didn't address the assignment, I'm sure others will. But nice idea assigning a specific task like that. :smile:
Last edited by phil on Wed Dec 29, 2010 12:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
Kammalakkhano , bhikkhave, bālo, kammalakkhano pandito, apadānasobhanī paññāti
(The fool is characterized by his/her actions/the wise one is characterized by his/her actions/Wisdom shines forth in behaviour.)
(AN 3.2 Lakkhana Sutta)
User avatar
phil
 
Posts: 666
Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2009 5:08 am
Location: Tokyo

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Dec 29, 2010 12:19 am

Hi Phil,

Interesting point. I agree that such things are to be realised, not insisted on...

Besides, it's clear that in suttas such as this the Buddha is talking about the Tathagata. Similar things are said about arahants in other suttas. The only passage I can recall that might be applied to a non-arahant is:
SN 5.10 Vajira Sutta: Sister Vajira
Just as when, with an assemblage of parts, there's the word, chariot, even so when aggregates are present, there's the convention of living being.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html


:anjali:
Mike
User avatar
mikenz66
 
Posts: 10536
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby Anicca » Wed Dec 29, 2010 12:23 am

Can I ever relate to being worthy of the "subtle" insults, well deserved - I earned 'em!

mikenz66 wrote:Assignment: Provide some references to suttas where the Buddha corrects or provides an answer.


Here's four corrections:
MN 22 Alagaddupama Sutta: The Snake Simile
Now on that occasion a monk called Arittha, formerly of the vulture killers, had conceived this pernicious view: "There are things called 'obstructions' by the Blessed One. As I understand his teaching, those things are not necessarily obstructive for one who pursues them."
...
"Is it true, Arittha, that you have conceived this pernicious view: 'There are things called "obstructions" by the Blessed One. As I understand his teaching those things are not necessarily obstructive for him who pursues them'?" — "Yes, indeed, Lord, I understand the teaching of the Blessed One in this way that those things called 'obstructions' by the Blessed One, are not necessarily obstructive for him who pursues them."
6. "Of whom do you know, foolish man, that I have taught to him the teaching in that manner?
...


SN 12.12 Phagguna Sutta: To Phagguna
... After these words, the venerable Moliya-Phagguna addressed the Exalted One as follows:
"Who, O Lord, consumes[1] the nutriment consciousness?"
"The question is not correct," said the Exalted One.
...


Ud 3.3 Yasoja Sutta: About Yasoja
... Then a third time, when the night was far advanced, at the end of the third watch, as dawn was approaching and the face of the night was beaming, Ven. Ananda arose from his seat, arranged his robe over one shoulder, stood facing the Blessed One with his hands placed palm-to-palm over his heart, and said to him: "The night, lord, is far advanced. The third watch has ended. Dawn is approaching and the face of the night is beaming. The visiting monks have been sitting here a long time. May the Blessed One greet them."
Then the Blessed One, emerging from his imperturbable concentration, said to Ven. Ananda, "Ananda, if you had known, you would not have spoken like that. I, along with all 500 of these monks, have been sitting in imperturbable concentration."
...


SN 45.2 Upaddha Sutta: Half (of the Holy Life)
... Ven. Ananda said to the Blessed One, "This is half of the holy life, lord: admirable friendship, admirable companionship, admirable camaraderie."
"Don't say that, Ananda. Don't say that. Admirable friendship, admirable companionship, admirable camaraderie is actually the whole of the holy life.
...


metta
Anicca
 
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 4:11 am
Location: Edmond, Oklahoma

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby Anicca » Wed Dec 29, 2010 12:29 am

mikenz66 wrote:Assignment: Provide some references to suttas where the Buddha corrects or provides an answer.

And four provided answers:

SN 36.15 Santaka Sutta: To Ananda (1)
..."What are the feelings, O Lord? What is the origin of feelings, what is their cessation and the way leading to their cessation? What is the gratification in feelings? What is the danger in feelings? And what is the escape from them?"
...


SN 54.13 Ananda Sutta: To Ananda
... Then Ven. Ananda went to the Blessed One and, on arrival, bowed down to him and sat to one side. As he was sitting there he addressed the Blessed One, saying, "Is there one quality that, when developed & pursued, brings four qualities to completion? And four qualities that, when developed & pursued, bring seven qualities to completion? And seven qualities that, when developed & pursued, bring two qualities to completion?"
...


SN 44.10 Ananda Sutta: To Ananda
... Then, not long after Vacchagotta the wanderer had left, Ven. Ananda said to the Blessed One, "Why, lord, did the Blessed One not answer when asked a question by Vacchagotta the wanderer?"
...


AN 2.18 Ekamsena Sutta: Categorically
Then Ven. Ananda went to the Blessed One and, on arrival, having bowed down to him, sat to one side. As he was sitting there, the Blessed One said to him, "I say categorically, Ananda, that bodily misconduct, verbal misconduct, & mental misconduct should not be done."
"Given that the Blessed One has declared, lord, that bodily misconduct, verbal misconduct, & mental misconduct should not be done, what drawbacks can one expect when doing what should not be done?"
...


metta
Anicca
 
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 4:11 am
Location: Edmond, Oklahoma

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby phil » Wed Dec 29, 2010 12:34 am

mikenz66 wrote:Hi Phil,

Interesting point. I agree that such things are to be realised, not insisted on...

Besides, it's clear that in suttas such as this the Buddha is talking about the Tathagata. Similar things are said about arahants in other suttas. The only passage I can recall that might be applied to a non-arahant is:
SN 5.10 Vajira Sutta: Sister Vajira
Just as when, with an assemblage of parts, there's the word, chariot, even so when aggregates are present, there's the convention of living being.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html


:anjali:
Mike


Interesting. But wouldn't you say that even if they don't directly address the issue of existence/non-existence of beings, all the suttas in SN 35 that teach about "the all" being eye, visible object, eye consciousness etc or suttas in SN 22 that teach about the khandas according to the three characteristics get at the ultimate non-existence of people? Maybe this is a different kettle of fish that I shouldn't be opening here, but my personal doubt is not about whether the Buddha teaches about the ultimate non-existence of beings, but that we shouldn't aspire to that understanding too easily....

I probably have completley missed the point of the sutta, can't the ultimate existence or non-existence of the Tathagata be extended to the ultimate existence or non-existence of people?
Kammalakkhano , bhikkhave, bālo, kammalakkhano pandito, apadānasobhanī paññāti
(The fool is characterized by his/her actions/the wise one is characterized by his/her actions/Wisdom shines forth in behaviour.)
(AN 3.2 Lakkhana Sutta)
User avatar
phil
 
Posts: 666
Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2009 5:08 am
Location: Tokyo

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby Anicca » Wed Dec 29, 2010 12:55 am

phil wrote:Interesting. But wouldn't you say that even if they don't directly address the issue of existence/non-existence of beings, all the suttas in SN 35 that teach about "the all" being eye, visible object, eye consciousness etc or suttas in SN 22 that teach about the khandas according to the three characteristics get at the ultimate non-existence of people? Maybe this is a different kettle of fish that I shouldn't be opening here, but my personal doubt is not about whether the Buddha teaches about the ultimate non-existence of beings, but that we shouldn't aspire to that understanding too easily....

I probably have completley missed the point of the sutta, can't the ultimate existence or non-existence of the Tathagata be extended to the ultimate existence or non-existence of people?

Isn't this related to the not-self vs. no-self debate?

Ajahn Geoff is sometimes maligned because of emphasising the not-self over no-self.

When it comes to the semantics proper of describing either the Tathagata or Nibbana - I just go sit patiently for the right understanding to come.

I have been very patient.

Lots more sitting before I weigh in on that kind of debate - and by that time it'll probably not be of concern anymore ... :thinking:

metta
Anicca
 
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 4:11 am
Location: Edmond, Oklahoma

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Dec 29, 2010 1:23 am

Hi Phil,

Certainly one can argue that the "self" of a worldling is an illusion but I think that the arahant's unfathomability is more than that:

Dhammapada http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .budd.html
420. He whose track no gods, no angels, no humans trace, the arahant who has destroyed all cankers — him do I call a holy man.


:anjali:
Mike
User avatar
mikenz66
 
Posts: 10536
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Dec 29, 2010 5:09 am

Looks like Anicca is currently at the top of the class...

:anjali:
Mike
User avatar
mikenz66
 
Posts: 10536
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Dec 29, 2010 5:13 am

Comments from Bhikku Bodhi (BB) and the Commentary (Spk).

"Friend Anuradha, when a Tathagata is describing a Tathagata---the highest type of person, the supreme person, the attainer of the supreme attainment ...

BB: Tathargato uttamapuriso paramapuiso paramapattiptto.
This should establish that "the Tathagata" here is not just "a being", but a Buddha or an arahant; the expression recurs at
SN 44:9 http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
The four theses are all rooted in a conception of the Tathagata as a self. The commentaries explain the first as eternalism, the second as annihilationism, the third as a syncretic view (partial-eternalism), the fourth as evasive scepticism.
Two whole chapters in SN deal with the three issues,
the Vacchagottasamyutta
SN 33 http://awake.kiev.ua/dhamma/tipitaka/2S ... ggo-e.html
and the Abyakatasamyutta
SN 44 http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .html#sn44
see also
SN 16.12
User avatar
mikenz66
 
Posts: 10536
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby phil » Wed Dec 29, 2010 11:36 am

mikenz66 wrote:Hi Phil,

Certainly one can argue that the "self" of a worldling is an illusion but I think that the arahant's unfathomability is more than that:

Dhammapada http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .budd.html
420. He whose track no gods, no angels, no humans trace, the arahant who has destroyed all cankers — him do I call a holy man.


:anjali:
Mike


Hi Mike

Thanks, I'd never thought the "self" of the Tathagata, the identity of the Tathagata being more unfathomable than anyone else, but the text does indeed seem to be saying that. No further questions here. :smile:
Kammalakkhano , bhikkhave, bālo, kammalakkhano pandito, apadānasobhanī paññāti
(The fool is characterized by his/her actions/the wise one is characterized by his/her actions/Wisdom shines forth in behaviour.)
(AN 3.2 Lakkhana Sutta)
User avatar
phil
 
Posts: 666
Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2009 5:08 am
Location: Tokyo

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby phil » Wed Dec 29, 2010 11:41 am

Anicca wrote:
phil wrote:Interesting. But wouldn't you say that even if they don't directly address the issue of existence/non-existence of beings, all the suttas in SN 35 that teach about "the all" being eye, visible object, eye consciousness etc or suttas in SN 22 that teach about the khandas according to the three characteristics get at the ultimate non-existence of people? Maybe this is a different kettle of fish that I shouldn't be opening here, but my personal doubt is not about whether the Buddha teaches about the ultimate non-existence of beings, but that we shouldn't aspire to that understanding too easily....

I probably have completley missed the point of the sutta, can't the ultimate existence or non-existence of the Tathagata be extended to the ultimate existence or non-existence of people?

Isn't this related to the not-self vs. no-self debate?

Ajahn Geoff is sometimes maligned because of emphasising the not-self over no-self.

When it comes to the semantics proper of describing either the Tathagata or Nibbana - I just go sit patiently for the right understanding to come.

I have been very patient.

Lots more sitting before I weigh in on that kind of debate - and by that time it'll probably not be of concern anymore ... :thinking:


Hi Anicca

Right, I agree with you, let's wait for the right understanding to come. As Mike said in an earlier post, the not-self or no-self is to be realized, not ...I forgot how he put it, but I would say....not taken as a starting condition for developing understanding...

For me, there has to be beginning to look for perception of anicca, I haven't even gotten there yet. It's the starting point of developing liberating insight, if I understand correctly.


By the way, if your user name is anicca, why doesn't it keep changing? Haha. Maybe you've heard that one already...
Kammalakkhano , bhikkhave, bālo, kammalakkhano pandito, apadānasobhanī paññāti
(The fool is characterized by his/her actions/the wise one is characterized by his/her actions/Wisdom shines forth in behaviour.)
(AN 3.2 Lakkhana Sutta)
User avatar
phil
 
Posts: 666
Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2009 5:08 am
Location: Tokyo

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby Anicca » Wed Dec 29, 2010 4:11 pm

phil wrote:By the way, if your user name is anicca, why doesn't it keep changing?

Oh, it changes - Anicca to anicca to annica to Annica to annicca to ... everything goes round and round in this circle game! :tongue:

mikenz66 wrote:Looks like Anicca is currently at the top of the class...


Please, help me down! Heights scare me.
I'm taking a seat at the back of the room.

metta
Anicca
 
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 4:11 am
Location: Edmond, Oklahoma

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Dec 29, 2010 7:14 pm

OK class, pay attention! :reading:

Some comments from the Commentary suggesting that the Venerable was panicked into giving an incorrect response:

"When this was said, the Venerable Anuradha said to those wanderers ... he describes them apart from these four cases: ... "

Spk: It is said that he thought: "These are hostile enemies of the Teaching. The Teacher would not describe (the Tathagata) as they say. He must have described him in some other way."
User avatar
mikenz66
 
Posts: 10536
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby Anicca » Wed Dec 29, 2010 8:45 pm

I came across this regarding the mind, Nibbana and the Tathagata (he later mentions SN 22.85 The Yamaka Sutta as well as our Anuradha Sutta) ...

from: Straight from the Heart: Thirteen Talks on the Practice of Meditation by Venerable Acariya Maha Boowa Ñanasampanno - The Conventional Mind, The Mind Released
It's not something that can be expressed like conventional things in general, because it's not a conventional reality. It lies solely within the range of those who are non-conventional, who know their own non-conventionality. For this reason, it can't be described.
Those pesky hindrances - got my mouth watering for that "indescribably delicious" Mounds bar ... oops back to topic ...

mikenz66 wrote:OK class, pay attention! :reading:
Some comments from the Commentary suggesting that the Venerable was panicked into giving an incorrect response:
"When this was said, the Venerable Anuradha said to those wanderers ... he describes them apart from these four cases: ... "
Spk: It is said that he thought: "These are hostile enemies of the Teaching. The Teacher would not describe (the Tathagata) as they say. He must have described him in some other way."


Doesn't a lapse of mindfulness just heap more unskillful behavior on the Venerable Anuradha? It certainly does not excuse him, does it?

As one who does not know their own non-conventionality - I would not attempt to describe the Tathagata (or Nibbana - or the mind) other than to quote word for word the Tathagata's own description of the indescribable. Panicked or not - it seems the Venerable Anuradha attempted the "undoable".

Do the commentaries say that the Venerable Anuradha reached any certain stage of awakening? Didn't the Buddha warn against teaching when, well, paraphrasing Ajahn Boowa, "one does not know their own non-conventionality"?

metta
Anicca
 
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 4:11 am
Location: Edmond, Oklahoma

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Dec 30, 2010 8:57 am

http://www.bps.lk/olib/wh/wh011-p.html

Anatta and Nibbana -Egolessness and Deliverance
by
Nyanaponika Thera

Section 6.


The two main-types of a positive-metaphysical interpretation of Nibbana can be easily included in a considerable number of false views mentioned, classified and rejected by the Buddha. A selection of applicable classifications will be presented in what follows. This material, additional to the fundamental remarks in the preceding section, will furnish an abundance of documentation for the fact that not a single eternalistic conception of self and Nibbana, of any conceivable form, is reconcilable with the teachings of the Buddha as found in their oldest available presentation in the Pali Canon.

(a) In the Samyutta Nikaya (SN 22:86) we read: “Do you think, Anuradha, that the Perfect One (tathagata) is apart from corporeality (aññatra rupa) … apart from consciousness?” [10] — “Certainly not, O Lord.” — “Do you think that the Perfect One is someone without corporeality (arupi) … someone without consciousness?” [11] — “Certainly not, O Lord.” — “Since the Perfect One, Anuradha, cannot, truly and really, be found by you even during lifetime, is it befitting to declare: ’He who is the Perfect One, the highest being … that Perfect One can be made known outside of these four possibilities: The Perfect One exists after death … does not exist … exists in some way and in another way not … can neither be said to exist nor not to exist’?” — “Certainly not, O Lord.”

This text applies to both main-types of view which assume a self beyond the aggregates. It should be mentioned here that the commentary paraphrases the words “the Perfect One” (tathagata) by “living being” (satta). That is probably meant to show that the statements in the text are valid not only for the conventional term “the Perfect One” but also for any other terms designating an individuality.

...

[10] I.e., outside the aggregates taken singly.
[11] I.e., outside the aggregates as a whole.
User avatar
mikenz66
 
Posts: 10536
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Re: SN 22.86 Anuradha Sutta

Postby Anicca » Thu Dec 30, 2010 4:49 pm

Hi Mike!
mikenz66 wrote:http://www.bps.lk/olib/wh/wh011-p.html
It should be mentioned here that the commentary paraphrases the words “the Perfect One” (tathagata) by “living being” (satta). That is probably meant to show that the statements in the text are valid not only for the conventional term “the Perfect One” but also for any other terms designating an individuality.


Does readng this change your previous statement?
mikenz66 wrote:Certainly one can argue that the "self" of a worldling is an illusion but I think that the arahant's unfathomability is more than that ...


If "things" such as Nibbana, Tathagata and self (not that there is any "thing" - "thing" used merely as a conventional placeholder) is indescribable or unfathomable in conventional terms - can the depth of that "unfathomableness" be described as more or less?

:thinking:

metta
Anicca
 
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 4:11 am
Location: Edmond, Oklahoma

Next

Return to Study Group

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests