vinasp wrote: But, the Buddha never says that seeing is impermanent, or suffering. Why?
Because seeing is not fabricated, it is not a sankhata. It does not cease while
one is alive.
vinasp wrote: Take, for example, "eye-consciousness", this is fabricated, it is something
which has been made, constructed. When it was first made, that is called its
arising. While it persists, that is called its staying. When it vanishes, that
is called its passing away.
vinasp wrote: It only arises once, for most of us this was many years in the past. It will
only pass away once, when we become enlightened. Between these events it
persists or stays.
vinasp wrote: All I am attempting to do is to discover the truth about the Nikaya teachings.
vinasp wrote: And can you cite a passage from the Nikaya's which shows that seeing and
eye-consciousness are the same thing?
vinasp wrote: Does it? Can you cite a passage which shows that?
And even if you can, this would not be the complete and permanent cessation
which would follow from the cessation of the six-spheres.
Dmytro wrote:Hi Vincent,vinasp wrote:What does "eye" mean here?
"Eye" here is a wrong traditional English translation.
Pali term "cakkhu" here means "sight".
Recently published Margaret Cone's Pali-English dictionary gives in the "cakkhu" article following meanings:
cakkhu, 1. the eye; the organ of sight; the faculty of seeing, sight;...
Here the last meaning applies.
As for "cakkhu" (eye)", etc., Sue Hamilton discusses this issue at length in Identity and Experience: The Constitution of the Human Being According to Early Buddhism (pp. 7-35). She concludes that these six do not refer to the physical organs.
vinasp wrote: Nana said: "An arahant still experiences the six spheres. MN 121: ..."
MN 9 said:
"There would. When a disciple of the noble ones discerns the six sense media, the origination of the six sense media, the cessation of the six sense media, and the way of practice leading to the cessation of the six sense media, then he is a person of right view... who has arrived at this true Dhamma. ..."
Would you care to explain this apparent contradiction?
vinasp wrote: Would you care to explain this apparent contradiction?
Nanananda wrote:The medley of wrong views, current among those of other
sects, is the product of the six sense-bases dependent on con-
tact. The Buddha's vision, on the other hand, seems to be an
all-encompassing lustre of wisdom, born of the cessation of the
six sense-bases, which in effect, is the vision of Nibbāna. This
fact is further clarified in the sutta by the statement of the Bud-
dha that those who cling to those wrong views, based on name-
and-form, keep on whirling within the saṃsāric round because
of those very views.
D I 45, Brahmajālasutta.This paragraph clearly brings out the distinction between
"They all continue to
experience feeling coming into contact again and again with the
six sense-bases, and to them dependent on contact there is feel-
ing, dependent on feeling there is craving, dependent on craving
there is grasping, dependent on grasping there is becoming, de-
pendent on becoming there is birth, and dependent on birth, de-
cay, death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, grief and despair come to
be. But when, monks, a monk knows, as they truly are, the aris-
ing, the going down, the satisfaction, the peril and the stepping
out concerning the six sense-bases, that monk has a knowledge
which is far superior to that of all those dogmatists."
those who held on to such speculative views and the one who
wins to the vision made known by the Buddha. The former were
dependent on contact, that is, sensory contact, even if they pos-
sessed worldly higher knowledges. Because of contact orig-
inating from the six sense-bases there is feeling. Because of
feeling they are lured into craving and grasping which make
them go round and round in saṃsāra.
The emancipated monk who keeps to the right path, on the
other hand, wins to that synoptic vision of the six sense-bases,
replete in its five aspects. That is what is known as the light of
wisdom. To him, all five aspects of the six sense-bases become
clear, namely the arising, the going down, the satisfaction, the
peril and the stepping out. That light of wisdom is considered
the highest knowledge, precisely
The reference to the formula of dependent arising in the
above passage is highly significant. It is clear proof of the fact
that the law of dependent arising is not something to be ex-
plained with reference to a past existence. It is a law relevant
to the present moment.
vinasp wrote: Your explanation makes no sense to me. Does what you call "the full development
of the noble eightfold path", result in the cessation of ignorance - or not?
vinasp wrote: Which is correct, the DO formula, which says that the six-spheres cease, or
MN 121 which says that they are still present?
vinasp wrote: So, the noble eightfold path leads to the cessation of ... the six internal
vinasp wrote:Hi Nana,
If ignorance has ceased for this arahant, then according to the DO formula
the six-spheres have also ceased.
I agree that the arahant still has the five actual senses and a mind.
Which is correct, the DO formula, which says that the six-spheres cease, or
MN 121 which says that they are still present?
Kind regards, Vincent.
vinasp wrote: There clearly is an apparent contradiction.
You may wish to reconsider your statement above in light of how Dependant Cessation is crafted in the Pali. The Pali grammatical structure of the Dependant Cessation schema allows a downstream cessation effect to be either concurrent with the cessation of avijja or far, far in the future (see idappaccayata and SN 12.49 - 50 on idappacayata, but the possibility of temporal disjunction only shows in the Pali, not in the English translations).
"As a huge blazing fire, with no more fire wood added,...
Goes down to reach a state of calm,
When saïkhàras calm down,
One is called `extinguished'."
From the particular context in which the verse occurs, it seems that this imagery of the fire is a restatement of the image of the lotus unsmeared by water. Though the embers are still smouldering, to the extent that they are no longer hungering for more fuel and are not emitting flames, they may as well be reckoned as `extinguished'.
This cooling off happens just before death, without igniting another spark of life. When Màra comes to grab and seize, the arahant lets go. The pain of death with which Màra teases his hapless victim and lures him into another existence, becomes ineffective in the case of the arahant. As he has already gone through the supramundane experience of deathlessness, in the arahattaphalasamàdhi, death loses its sting when at last it comes. The influx-free deliverance of the mind and the influx-free deliverance through wisdom enable him to cool down all feelings in a way that baffles Màra.
So the arahant lets go of his body, experiencing ambrosial deathlessness. As in the case of Venerable Dabba Mallaputta, he would sometimes cremate his own body without leaving any ashes. Outwardly it might appear as an act of self-immolation, which indeed is painful. But this is not so. Using his jhànic powers, he simply employs the internal fire element to cremate the body he has already discarded.
This, then, is the Buddha's extraordinary solution to the problem of overcoming death, a solution that completely outwits Màra.
 Ud 92, Pañhamadabbasutta.
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