Sandhaka Sutta

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Sandhaka Sutta

Postby pulga » Thu Mar 17, 2011 2:56 pm

The 52nd paragraph of the Sandhaka Sutta (M76) has a significant variant reading that the translations of the Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhi and I.B. Horner differ on:

http://uqconnect.net/slsoc/sutta/m76.pdf

I.B. Horner's translation is more thought provoking than the Ven. Bodhi's, but I can understand the justification for his rendering. I just wonder why the Buddha felt an arahant's reflection worthy of comment.
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Re: Sandhaka Sutta

Postby daverupa » Thu Mar 17, 2011 7:30 pm

The Nigantha Nataputta claimed that he had permanent knowledge of his wisdom at all times, iirc, and the Buddha was likely taking pains to explain a difference between that claim and his own experience.
    "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: Sandhaka Sutta

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Mar 17, 2011 7:36 pm

Hi Pulga,

Can you explain exactly what the difference is? Though BB states in his footnote that the BBS edition is "more elaborate" I don't see much difference between what you linked to (below) and the Nanamoli/Bodhi version. Perhaps I'm missing something...

52. “But, Master Ananda, when a bhikkhu is an arahant with taints destroyed ... is his knowledge and vision that his
taints are destroyed continuously and uninterruptedly present to him whether he is walking or standing or sleeping or awake?”
“As to that, Sandaka, I shall give you a simile, for some wise men here understand the meaning of a statement by
means of a simile. Suppose a man’s hands and feet were cut off. Would he know ‘My hands and feet are cut off’ continuously
and uninteruptedly, whether he is walking or standing or sleeping or awake, or would he know ‘My hands and feet are cut
off’ only kx, lien he reviews this fact?”
“The man, Master Ananda, would not know ‘My hands and feet are cut off’ continuously and uninterruptedly; rather,
he would know ‘My hands and feet are cut off’ only when he views this fact.”
So too, Sandaka, when a bhikkhu is an arahant with taints destroyed ... his knowledge and vision that his taints are
destroyed is not continuously and uninterruptedly present to him whether he is walking or standing or sleeping or awake;
rather, he knows ‘My taints are destroyed’ only when he reviews this fact.

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Re: Sandhaka Sutta

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Mar 17, 2011 7:38 pm

On second thoughts, I know that BB significantly updated the Nanamoli/Bodhi MN translation with new editions. My (third) edition looks the same as the quote above. Can someone with an earlier edition comment?

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Re: Sandhaka Sutta

Postby pulga » Fri Mar 18, 2011 2:55 am

mikenz66 wrote:Hi Pulga,

Can you explain exactly what the difference is? Though BB states in his footnote that the BBS edition is "more elaborate" I don't see much difference between what you linked to (below) and the Nanamoli/Bodhi version. Perhaps I'm missing something...


The link I provided has both the Horner translation and the Ñanamoli/Bodhi translation. I.B. Horner uses the BBS edition of the text in which she translates that an arahant knows "My taints are destroyed" only when he reviews this fact. The Ven. Bodhi uses the more elaborate Chatta Sangayana edition in which an arahant's cankers are as though destroyed, and moreover he knows it upon reflection.

Perhaps I'm reading more into the passage than I should, but it is interesting that an arahant doesn't actually know he's liberated unless he reflects upon it; as though the act of reflection or mindfulness exhibits a principle or truth that isn't otherwise apparent in unreflective behavior. The Horner translation seems to put more emphasis on this point.
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Re: Sandhaka Sutta

Postby mikenz66 » Fri Mar 18, 2011 3:10 am

Hi Pulga,

As daverupa says, the point here seems to be that an arahant (or the Buddha) only knows something when s/he turns her/his mind to it. This point is made in other suttas. See this discussion
The Buddha's Omniscience.
http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=132

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Re: Sandhaka Sutta

Postby pulga » Fri Mar 18, 2011 4:17 am

Hi Mike,

You and daverupa may be right; but I still think there may be something conveyed in this sutta that is not readily appreciated, sort of a glimpse into the nature of an arahant's experience. Reflection seems to be the litmus test that confirms whether or not we're liberated from the belief in a self.

Thanks for the link. I'll look it over.
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Re: Sandhaka Sutta

Postby mikenz66 » Fri Mar 18, 2011 4:31 am

Hi pulga,

I'm sure there are many things that can be learned from studying and thinking about such things. It occurs to me that the Theravada classification of insight knowledge includes the "Knowledge of Reviewing" after each fruition:
http://aimwell.org/Books/Mahasi/Progres ... #Reviewing
The duration of that threefold knowledge of maturity, path, and fruition is, however, not long. It is very short, and lasts for just an instant, like the duration of a single thought of noticing. Subsequently there arises "knowledge of reviewing." Through that knowledge of reviewing the meditator discerns that the insight leading to emergence came along with the very rapid function of noticing, and that immediately after the last phase of noticing, the path consciousness entered into the cessation (of formations). This is "knowledge reviewing the path."

He also discerns that the consciousness abided in that same state of cessation during the intervening period between the path and reviewing. This is "knowledge reviewing fruition."

He further discerns that the object just experienced is void of all formations. This is "knowledge reviewing Nibbāna."

In this connection it is said in the Path of Purification: " ‘By that path, indeed, I have come’; thus he reviews the path. ‘That blessing was obtained’; thus he reviews the fruition. 'That state has been penetrated as an object by me'; {44} thus he reviews the Deathless, Nibbāna" (Visuddhimagga, xxii, 20).


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