anatta and cetana and conditions for right view

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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby mikenz66 » Mon Nov 26, 2012 6:53 pm

Dear Robert,
robertk wrote:
mikenz66 wrote:Hi Robert,

I don't mean that one can achieve sati at all times, if at all. I probably should not use "mindfulness" but some more generic term like "pay attention".

Mike

Dear Mike
the thing is, is that this idea that paying attention leads somehow to mindfulness needs to be examined. Attention arises with kusala and akusala and if we agree that akusala is more likley to arise (which it is) then all someone is doing by having more attention is increasing some special type of akusala or even magnifying the idea of a self who can control awareness to go here, arise there..

Of course. This is an important issue, and it's clear that such wrong view can be a serious problem. However, it is something that most teachers certainly do address (putting aside whether they get it exactly right...). No-one reputable that I'm aware of teaches "control of aggregates (or cittas)". All talk about causes an conditions for the arising of sati/samadhi/panna/etc.

Perhaps you could provide a clear canonical (or commentarial) reference for your assertion that:
akusala is more likley to arise (which it is)

and we could discuss how that might apply.



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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby dhamma follower » Tue Nov 27, 2012 2:27 am

Greeting Alex,

And why isn't proper practice with right view are the conditions for more of it. Do you expect person who never meditates to have the same sati as someone who was, lets say, a meditating bhikkhu for 20 years?


The question is: what is proper practice in term of paramatha dhamma?

Is staying in a kuti or a meditation hall, trying to focus on something, or having the idea that "I can direct sati while walking, sitting" what you call proper practice? All these things, when done with the idea that sati can arise at will, are more likely to be akusala moments rooted in wrong view. Is akusala the practice?

Also, your comment above implies that as long as we decide to have some activities called meditation, sati will be there. Is it so, or sati arises by its own conditions? What is the characteristics of sati, precisely? Here is the description on sati in the Atthasalini:

The Atthasalini then gives another definition of mindfulness:
... Mindfulness has "not floating away" as its characteristic, unforgetfulness as its function, guarding, or the state of facing the object, as its manifestation, firm remembrance (sanna) or application in mindfulness as regards the body, etc., as proximate cause. It should be regarded as a door-past from being firmly established in the object, and as a door-keeper from guarding the door of the senses.


Nina commented:

As we have seen, the Atthasalini states that the proximate cause of mindfulness is ill remembrance (sanna) or the four applications of mindfulness (satipatthana). There can be mindfulness of the nama or rupa which appears because of firm remembrance of all we learnt from the teachings about nama and rupa. Listening is mentioned in the scriptures as a most important condition for the attainment of enlightenment, because when we listen time and again, there can be firm remenbrance of the Dhamma. Mindfulness is different from remembrance, sanna. Sanna accompanies every citta; it recognizes the object and "marks" it, so that it can be recognized again. Mindfulness, sati, is not forgethe of what is wholesome. It arises with sobhana cittas. But when there is sati which is non-forgetfuI of dana, sila, of the object of calm or, in the case of vipassana, of the nama and rupa appearing at the present moment, there is also kusala sanna which remembers the object in the fight way, in the wholesome way.


http://www.vipassana.info/cetasikas28.html


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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby dhamma follower » Tue Nov 27, 2012 2:47 am

Alex123 wrote:Hello Dhamma follower,

dhamma follower wrote:- why sitting on a cushion should be chosen as opposed to going to the market after listening to the right Dhamma?


Less external stimulation that can provoke defilements. Even when it comes to considering the Dhamma, it is easier to do it in a quite rather than loud and chaotic environment.


Defilement is also object of satipatthana:

"And how does a monk remain focused on the mind in & of itself? There is the case where a monk, when the mind has passion, discerns that the mind has passion. When the mind is without passion, he discerns that the mind is without passion. When the mind has aversion, he discerns that the mind has aversion. When the mind is without aversion, he discerns that the mind is without aversion. When the mind has delusion, he discerns that the mind has delusion. When the mind is without delusion, he discerns that the mind is without delusion.

"When the mind is constricted, he discerns that the mind is constricted. When the mind is scattered, he discerns that the mind is scattered. When the mind is enlarged, he discerns that the mind is enlarged. When the mind is not enlarged, he discerns that the mind is not enlarged. When the mind is surpassed, he discerns that the mind is surpassed. When the mind is unsurpassed, he discerns that the mind is unsurpassed. When the mind is concentrated, he discerns that the mind is concentrated. When the mind is not concentrated, he discerns that the mind is not concentrated. When the mind is released, he discerns that the mind is released. When the mind is not released, he discerns that the mind is not released.
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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby Alex123 » Tue Nov 27, 2012 3:15 am

Hello Dhamma Follower,

dhamma follower wrote:Defilement is also object of satipatthana


Right, but at what stage? Beginner can simply get swept away by tide of defilements. It requires a very wise person to be able to observe them.

Just like a person who just joined a gym shouldn't attempt to lift too much, same is here.

dhamma follower wrote:The question is: what is proper practice in term of paramatha dhamma?


To observe things as they occur with wisdom.

dhamma follower wrote:Is staying in a kuti or a meditation hall, trying to focus on something,


Not everyone teaches that one should focus on something. Rather, be mindful of what is present to awareness right now.


dhamma follower wrote:or having the idea that "I can direct sati while walking, sitting" what you call proper practice?


How about doing this without delusive idea of "I am doing this".


dhamma follower wrote:Also, your comment above implies that as long as we decide to have some activities called meditation, sati will be there. Is it so, or sati arises by its own conditions?


Like weight training for more strength, conditions can be set for more sati.
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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Nov 27, 2012 5:16 am

Hi DF,
dhamma follower wrote:
And why isn't proper practice with right view are the conditions for more of it. Do you expect person who never meditates to have the same sati as someone who was, lets say, a meditating bhikkhu for 20 years?


The question is: what is proper practice in term of paramatha dhamma?

Is staying in a kuti or a meditation hall, trying to focus on something, or having the idea that "I can direct sati while walking, sitting" what you call proper practice? All these things, when done with the idea that sati can arise at will, are more likely to be akusala moments rooted in wrong view. Is akusala the practice?

I thought we had got past this idea that anyone is claiming that they can "direct" sati. Things happen due to causes and conditions.

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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby dhamma follower » Tue Nov 27, 2012 6:08 am

mikenz66 wrote:Hi DF,
dhamma follower wrote:
And why isn't proper practice with right view are the conditions for more of it. Do you expect person who never meditates to have the same sati as someone who was, lets say, a meditating bhikkhu for 20 years?


The question is: what is proper practice in term of paramatha dhamma?

Is staying in a kuti or a meditation hall, trying to focus on something, or having the idea that "I can direct sati while walking, sitting" what you call proper practice? All these things, when done with the idea that sati can arise at will, are more likely to be akusala moments rooted in wrong view. Is akusala the practice?

I thought we had got past this idea that anyone is claiming that they can "direct" sati. Things happen due to causes and conditions.

:anjali:
Mike


Indeed, Mike. I think it would be helpful that any newcomer reads carefully what has been discussed before, to avoid repeating the same arguments again and again.
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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby dhamma follower » Tue Nov 27, 2012 6:28 am

Dear Alex,

First of all, please read my answer to Mike's comment above.

dhamma follower wrote:Defilement is also object of satipatthana


Right, but at what stage


At the stage where sati which is directly aware of reality arises, by conditions. Concerning the conditions for sati accompanied by panna to arise, please refer to what has been discussed before.

The question is: what is proper practice in term of paramatha dhamma?

To observe things as they occur with wisdom.




Can someone decide: I shall obverse things as they occur with wisdom? Or it is sati-panna itself which arise and understand the reality as it is when the conditions for it are sufficient?

Back to the conditions for sati and panna.

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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Nov 27, 2012 9:45 am

Hi DF,
dhamma follower wrote:Indeed, Mike. I think it would be helpful that any newcomer reads carefully what has been discussed before, to avoid repeating the same arguments again and again.

Now I'm confused. Since I've not come across anyone (sensible) teaching that "sati can arise at will" I don't see the relevance of the comment.

If there is a problem with the view of other teachers and practitioners, it must therefore be much more subtle than that.

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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby dhamma follower » Tue Nov 27, 2012 1:10 pm

mikenz66 wrote:Hi DF,
dhamma follower wrote:Indeed, Mike. I think it would be helpful that any newcomer reads carefully what has been discussed before, to avoid repeating the same arguments again and again.

Now I'm confused. Since I've not come across anyone (sensible) teaching that "sati can arise at will" I don't see the relevance of the comment.

If there is a problem with the view of other teachers and practitioners, it must therefore be much more subtle than that.

:anjali:
Mike


This is precisely the core of the arguments so far. The teachers/students may not say: “we can make sati to arise at will”, but the very idea that one has to select some activities (like meditation) to develop sati implies that one thinks that sati will arise more often because one intends to be aware. When Alex said:

And why isn't proper practice with right view are the conditions for more of it. Do you expect person who never meditates to have the same sati as someone who was, lets say, a meditating bhikkhu for 20 years?


It is clear that he meant conventional meditation brought about sati.

Other than listening to the right Dhamma from wise friend, and wise consideration, which are also conditioned and have nothing to do with intention, no specific activity is mentioned as the condition for the arising of sati-panna in vipassana bhavana.

And when someone think that proper practice is involved with specific activities, instead of practice being only moments of right understanding which can happen independently of places/activities, the wrong understanding is already there, so speaking about “proper practice with right view” doesn’t make sense at all.

It is what AS said of understanding having to be very precise, not just words.

Actually, when I first listened to her, the subtlety of this point didn't click yet. I also thought that she was teaching about anatta like other teachers, only more radically. Yet, it turned out my understanding was not right, just of the words....

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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby Alex123 » Tue Nov 27, 2012 2:11 pm

Hello DF,

dhamma follower wrote:This is precisely the core of the arguments so far. The teachers/students may not say: “we can make sati to arise at will”, but the very idea that one has to select some activities (like meditation) to develop sati implies that one thinks that sati will arise more often because one intends to be aware. When Alex said:

Alex wrote:And why isn't proper practice with right view are the conditions for more of it. Do you expect person who never meditates to have the same sati as someone who was, lets say, a meditating bhikkhu for 20 years?



If it is cold, one can put more cloth on and feel warmer. If it is hot, one dresses in lighter close. If one is thirsty, one quenches thirst by drinking.
If one is hungry one quenches hunger by eating.

dhamma follower wrote:Other than listening to the right Dhamma from wise friend, and wise consideration, which are also conditioned and have nothing to do with intention, no specific activity is mentioned as the condition for the arising of sati-panna in vipassana bhavana.


It does involve intention to open the book, and keep reading it. Or it involves even more intentional activity such as booking a plane ticket to Bangkok and traveling there.
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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby beeblebrox » Tue Nov 27, 2012 2:33 pm

There are quite a few references to the sitting in suttas. It's one of the possible parts for a practice. If a person reads about it, and then goes on to try it... then that is one of the conditions taking root. If the person is resistant about it, then that means it's not one of the proper conditions. It's that simple.

There's no need to argue about it, or to debate about which is better than what. I think that one of the signs of a good practice (or a good listening) is when there is less struggle against others, i.e., less dukkha due to clinging. That is the main point of the four noble truths... I think it should be obvious.

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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Nov 27, 2012 6:58 pm

Hi DF,

dhamma follower wrote:
mikenz66 wrote:Hi DF,
dhamma follower wrote:Indeed, Mike. I think it would be helpful that any newcomer reads carefully what has been discussed before, to avoid repeating the same arguments again and again.

Now I'm confused. Since I've not come across anyone (sensible) teaching that "sati can arise at will" I don't see the relevance of the comment.

If there is a problem with the view of other teachers and practitioners, it must therefore be much more subtle than that.

:anjali:
Mike


This is precisely the core of the arguments so far. The teachers/students may not say: “we can make sati to arise at will”, but the very idea that one has to select some activities (like meditation) to develop sati implies that one thinks that sati will arise more often because one intends to be aware. When Alex said:

I have no idea why you equate setting up causes and conditions with "control". And, as I've said, exactly the same objection (making choices with the idea that they will lead to better understanding) applies to your approach.
dhamma follower wrote:Other than listening to the right Dhamma from wise friend, and wise consideration, which are also conditioned and have nothing to do with intention, no specific activity is mentioned as the condition for the arising of sati-panna in vipassana bhavana.

I understood that the conditions for sati were (CMA II, 5, Bhikkhu Bodhi commentary, Page 86):
Bhikkhu Bodhi wrote:It's proximate cause is strong perception (thirasanna) or the four foundations of mindfulness.

http://books.google.com.au/books?id=hxo ... 86&f=false


dhamma follower wrote:And when someone think that proper practice is involved with specific activities, instead of practice being only moments of right understanding which can happen independently of places/activities, the wrong understanding is already there, so speaking about “proper practice with right view” doesn’t make sense at all.

It is what AS said of understanding having to be very precise, not just words.

Actually, when I first listened to her, the subtlety of this point didn't click yet. I also thought that she was teaching about anatta like other teachers, only more radically. Yet, it turned out my understanding was not right, just of the words....

Clearly there are a lot of steps in the argument (from the suttas/abhidhamma, to the late commentary interpretation of the abhidhamma, to the interpretation of Khun Sujin) that others are practising the wrong way. So it's far from clear to the rest of us how to judge the accuracy of these arguments.

If you could point to a sutta/abhidhamma/commentary passage that spells out this problem, that would be very helpful.

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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby dhamma follower » Wed Nov 28, 2012 2:14 am

Dear Mike,

I have no idea why you equate setting up causes and conditions with "control"


I don’t. No control whatsoever, even this “setting up causes and conditions” is conditioned. The thing is: it is conditioned by right understanding or wrong understanding?
Why one selects “doing meditation” ? What are the conditions for sati in that process?

Let’s see what the Buddha says:

(7) And what is the food for mindfulness and full awareness?
Wise attention (yoniso manasikāra),84 should be the answer.
Wise attention, too, bhikshus, is with food, I say, not without food.
(8) And what is the food for wise attention?
Faith (saddhā)85 should be the answer.
Faith, too, bhikshus, is with food, I say, not without food.
(9) And what is the food for faith?
Listening to the true Dharma (saddhamma-s,savana)86 should be the answer.
Listening to the true Dharma, too, bhikshus, is with food, I say, not without food.
(10) And what is the food for listening to the true Dharma?
Associating with true individuals (sappurisa,saṁseva)87 should be the answer


Avija sutta 10.61

If one is clear that intention is not and doesn’t bring about sati, why select meditation as an activity? What's in there?

Clearly there are a lot of steps in the argument (from the suttas/abhidhamma, to the late commentary interpretation of the abhidhamma, to the interpretation of Khun Sujin) that others are practising the wrong way. So it's far from clear to the rest of us how to judge the accuracy of these arguments.

If you could point to a sutta/abhidhamma/commentary passage that spells out this problem, that would be very helpful.


It would need too many quotes and citations. Let’s see if we can get there using basic, fully recognized concepts:
- There’s no person, only rupa, citta and cetasikas. Agree?
- So when we talk about practice (or anything), actually we are talking about the working of rupa, citta and cetasikas. Agree?
- Rupa can not practice, it doesn’t know anything, it is incapable of panna. Agree?
- Only citta and cetasikas can be actually said to be the “practice” then. Agree?
- Can the citta which is seeing, hearing, smelling... is said to be the practice? Clearly, no, they can only does their respective function of seeing, hearing....
- There are many kinds of citta: akusala cittas, kusala cittas unaccompanied by panna, kusala cittas accompanied by panna. Agree?
- There’s only one citta arising at one moment with its object. Agree?
- At moments of akusala cittas, or kusala cittas unaccompanied by panna. Can it said to be the moment of practice? Clearly the answer is no. Agree.
- So what do we get here: Only moments of kusala cittas accompanied by panna can be said to be the practice, and more precisely, only sati-panna cetasikas them-selves constitute the practice, together with other path factors. And here, we should come back to the question: what are the conditions for them to arise?

I don’t see any of the above steps out of the content of the Sutta-Abhidhamma. If you don’t agree with any of the points above, please let me know.

There is, of course, samatha bhavana, which has its own conditions too. But we can spare that for now, unless you want to open a new thread for it.

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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby dhamma follower » Wed Nov 28, 2012 2:23 am

Dear BBB,

beeblebrox wrote:There are quite a few references to the sitting in suttas. It's one of the possible parts for a practice. If a person reads about it, and then goes on to try it... then that is one of the conditions taking root. If the person is resistant about it, then that means it's not one of the proper conditions. It's that simple.

There's no need to argue about it, or to debate about which is better than what. I think that one of the signs of a good practice (or a good listening) is when there is less struggle against others, i.e., less dukkha due to clinging. That is the main point of the four noble truths... I think it should be obvious.

:anjali:


I have addressed this before:

It would be a proper question to ask: what conventional meditation exactly means? Actually, AS doesn't reject any particular activity. She just asks why? It is clear that people in the suttas were sitting in jhanna. But do we have the same accumulations than the Boddha and his disciples at that time? What did the Buddha teach to his lay, house-holders followers, and what did he teach to the bikkhus who were already in the forest and who had the accumulations to be so? The word "samatha" also has different meanings. A reading into the suttas will be very different if the understanding of realities is thorough like AS's


We are talking about vipassana bhavana here.

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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Nov 28, 2012 4:50 am

dhamma follower wrote:Dear Mike,

I have no idea why you equate setting up causes and conditions with "control"


I don’t. No control whatsoever, even this “setting up causes and conditions” is conditioned. The thing is: it is conditioned by right understanding or wrong understanding?
Why one selects “doing meditation” ? What are the conditions for sati in that process?


Let’s see what the Buddha says:

(7) And what is the food for mindfulness and full awareness?
Wise attention (yoniso manasikāra),84 should be the answer.
Wise attention, too, bhikshus, is with food, I say, not without food.
(8) And what is the food for wise attention?
Faith (saddhā)85 should be the answer.
Faith, too, bhikshus, is with food, I say, not without food.
(9) And what is the food for faith?
Listening to the true Dharma (saddhamma-s,savana)86 should be the answer.
Listening to the true Dharma, too, bhikshus, is with food, I say, not without food.
(10) And what is the food for listening to the true Dharma?
Associating with true individuals (sappurisa,saṁseva)87 should be the answer


Avija sutta 10.61

If one is clear that intention is not and doesn’t bring about sati, why select meditation as an activity? What's in there?

There is, of course, the Satipatthana sutta, and the Satipatthana Samyutta...
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .soma.html
"Here, O bhikkhus, a bhikkhu, gone to the forest, to the foot of a tree, or to an empty place, sits down, bends in his legs crosswise on his lap, keeps his body erect, and arouses mindfulness in the object of meditation, namely, the breath which is in front of him.

"And further, O bhikkhus, when he is going, a bhikkhu understands: 'I am going'; when he is standing, he understands: 'I am standing'; when he is sitting, he understands: 'I am sitting'; when he is lying down, he understands: 'I am lying down'; or just as his body is disposed so he understands it.


dhamma follower wrote:
Clearly there are a lot of steps in the argument (from the suttas/abhidhamma, to the late commentary interpretation of the abhidhamma, to the interpretation of Khun Sujin) that others are practising the wrong way. So it's far from clear to the rest of us how to judge the accuracy of these arguments.

If you could point to a sutta/abhidhamma/commentary passage that spells out this problem, that would be very helpful.


It would need too many quotes and citations. Let’s see if we can get there using basic, fully recognized concepts:
- There’s no person, only rupa, citta and cetasikas. Agree?
- So when we talk about practice (or anything), actually we are talking about the working of rupa, citta and cetasikas. Agree?
- Rupa can not practice, it doesn’t know anything, it is incapable of panna. Agree?
- Only citta and cetasikas can be actually said to be the “practice” then. Agree?
- Can the citta which is seeing, hearing, smelling... is said to be the practice? Clearly, no, they can only does their respective function of seeing, hearing....
- There are many kinds of citta: akusala cittas, kusala cittas unaccompanied by panna, kusala cittas accompanied by panna. Agree?
- There’s only one citta arising at one moment with its object. Agree?
- At moments of akusala cittas, or kusala cittas unaccompanied by panna. Can it said to be the moment of practice? Clearly the answer is no. Agree.
- So what do we get here: Only moments of kusala cittas accompanied by panna can be said to be the practice, and more precisely, only sati-panna cetasikas them-selves constitute the practice, together with other path factors. And here, we should come back to the question: what are the conditions for them to arise?

I don’t see any of the above steps out of the content of the Sutta-Abhidhamma. If you don’t agree with any of the points above, please let me know.

There is nothing to disagree with in the above. We all agree that individual citta are not controllable. The disagreement seems to be to do with the conditions for the arising of kusala cittas. Obviously you agree that the conditions for their arising can be influenced, otherwise you wouldn't bother doing anything. We agree that sila and listening to the Dhamma is a good thing to do, right?

Where is the argument, then, that doing the things described in the Satipatthana sutta and various other suttas, commentaries, and so on are a wrong interpretation of the training? (Of course, I'm not disagreeing that any of these things could be done wrongly.) Where is this clearly explained in the Canon or Commentary?

dhamma follower wrote:There is, of course, samatha bhavana, which has its own conditions too. But we can spare that for now, unless you want to open a new thread for it.

The same arguments apply. No teacher I know of teaches that one can will oneself into jhana...

:anjali:
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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby dhamma follower » Wed Nov 28, 2012 6:46 am

Dear Mike,

Where is the argument, then, that doing the things described in the Satipatthana sutta and various other suttas, commentaries, and so on are a wrong interpretation of the training? (Of course, I'm not disagreeing that any of these things could be done wrongly.) Where is this clearly explained in the Canon or Commentary?


We are all the time doing the things described in the Satipatthana sutta, whether inside a meditation center, in a forest, or in our daily life at home. So this sutta can be understood:

- either as an instruction whereby one tries to induce sati while doing those things, which is the one upon which the idea of "proper practice" and "conventional meditation" is based. But this interpretation goes against what we have agreed so far that sati can not be induced at will, but arises by conditions, which is the ones described in the avija sutta. If this interpretation is to be considered true, it would mean the Buddha has contradicted him-self.

- either as a description of one's daily life (specifically, a bikkhu, in that context) and the objects that sati-panna can arise and be aware of, when conditions for it to arise are sufficient. This interpretation is the one suggested by AS, and it is in conformity with the Buddha's teaching on anattaness via D.O.

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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Nov 28, 2012 9:16 am

dhamma follower wrote:- either as an instruction whereby one tries to induce sati while doing those things, which is the one upon which the idea of "proper practice" and "conventional meditation" is based. But this interpretation goes against what we have agreed so far that sati can not be induced at will, but arises by conditions, which is the ones described in the avija sutta. If this interpretation is to be considered true, it would mean the Buddha has contradicted him-self.

Not at all. In my opinion your statement is an extrapolation from the Buddha's teaching that the aggregates (or rupa+citta) cannot be controlled to a particular interpretation that denies that there is any possibility of development by making choices about the conditions. The argument, if true, would also apply to to the path you choose to follow.
dhamma follower wrote:- either as a description of one's daily life (specifically, a bikkhu, in that context) and the objects that sati-panna can arise and be aware of, when conditions for it to arise are sufficient. This interpretation is the one suggested by AS, and it is in conformity with the Buddha's teaching on anattaness via D.O.
[/quote]
And there's nothing wrong with that, either. Just another choice...

:anjali:
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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Nov 28, 2012 9:46 am

Hi DF,

As I have said, many teachers point out that one can cultivate wrong view with practice. For example, here are some (edited to remove some of the repetition) comments from Ajahn Amaro's Q&A session:
http://feeds.amaravati.org/sundaytalks3
Ajahn Amaro: Let's get real - Q and A (2012)09/11/12 10:21
http://www.amaravati.org/podcast/1_late ... nd%20A.mp3

About 30:00:
As long as our practice is "me trying to do something, ... me developing insight ... me meditating three hours a day...", as long as that is bought into and believed in, the mind is getting committed to bhava-tanha, that clinging to "I and me and mine". But if that's let go of, there can still be meditating three hours a day, or whatever, there can still be the cultivation of the wholesome, the letting go of the unwholesome, but it's not done from a basis of "I and me and mine". So the practice of right effort is in four parts: Restraining the unwholesome from arising; If the unwholesome has arisen, letting it go; Cultivating the wholesome; If the wholesome has arisen, maintaining it. So there's a lot of doing. There's cultivating and restraining, there's a lot of doing going on, but the mind is not conceiving a doer, and owner. So it's a subtle area of practice. But what its pointing to is that there are two levels of truth. There's the conventional truth, that there's me here, and you over there, ... but if we don't recognise that as just a conventional truth then that's an obstruction... but on the level of ultimate truth there are just patterns of nature arising and passing away...

Now, of course, you might object that Ajahn Amaro does not explain how that "me trying to do something" is let go of.

However, you write that such practice is possible:
dhamma follower wrote:... as a description of one's daily life ... and the objects that sati-panna can arise and be aware of, when conditions for it to arise are sufficient.

so evidently it can happen, given the right conditions.

:anjali:
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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby robertk » Wed Nov 28, 2012 10:28 am

I am amazed that people cite the section about mindfulness of breathing- the most difficult of all objects for samatha- as 'proving' that one should sit down crosslegged under a tree in order to develop midnfulness. Why don't they cite the sections on urinating and defecating, also in the satipatthana sutta, to prove that first one needs to do these actions in order to have mindfulness.

Lets look at the section about when looking in different directions:

2. Clear comprehension in looking straight on and in looking away from the front
Alokite = "In looking straight on." Vilokite = "In looking away from the front." Here, looking straight on [alokitam] = seeing in the direction in front of oneself [purato pekkhanam]. Looking away from the front [vilokitam] = Looking out in all other directions [anudisa pekkhanam].


And other kinds of seeing, by way of turning the eye in the direction above, in the direction beneath and in the direction behind are called looking upwards, looking downwards and looking backwards. Here those are not taken. But just these two -- looking straight on and looking away from the front -- are taken, by way of what is befitting. Or, by this method, it is said, all those are also taken.

By way of what is fitting = In the form of that which is suitable to a recluse.




Within, it is said, there certainly is no self or soul which looks straight on or looks away from the front. Still, at the arising of the thought "I shall look straight on," and with that thought the process of oscillation (vayo dhatu) originating from mind, [citta samutthana] bringing into being bodily expression [viññatti] arises. Thus owing to the diffusion of the process of oscillation born of mental activity [cittakiriyavayodhatu vipphara], the lower eyelid goes down and the upper eyelid goes up. Surely there is no one who opens with a contrivance.

Thereupon, eye-consciousness arises fulfilling the function of sight [tato cakkhu viññanam dassana kiccam sadhentam uppajjati], it is said. Clear comprehension of this kind here is indeed called the clear comprehension of non-delusion [evam sampajananam panettha asammoha sampajaññam nama]. Further, clear comprehension of non-delusion should be also understood, here, through accurate knowledge of the root (mula pariñña), through the casual state (agantuka bhava) and through the temporary state [tavakalika bhava]. First (is the consideration) by way of the accurate knowledge of the root: --

In fact what many Buddhist mean by mindfulness is some sort of attention or focusing, but what the Budhd ameant was a momentary arising of insight that sees something of the anattaness of a reality.
And tis type of mindfulness is only possible during a Buddhasasana, and only if tehre is enough accumultaed understanding based on wise consideration of correct Dhamma. Otherwise one is devloping a wrong path.

As the commentary:
The Section on the Modes of Deportment
The Buddha, after dealing in the aforesaid manner with body-contemplation in the form of respiration-meditation, in detail, said: "And further," in order to deal exhaustively with body-contemplation, here, according to the meditation on the modes of deportment [iriyapatha].

]Gacchanto va gacchamiti pajanati = "When he is going (a bhikkhu) understands: 'I am going.'[/b]"
In this matter of going, readily do dogs, jackals and the like, know when they move on that they are moving. But this instruction on the modes of deportment was not given concerning similar awareness, because awareness of that sort belonging to animals does not shed the belief in a living being, does not knock out the percept of a soul, and neither becomes a subject of meditation nor the development of the Arousing of Mindfulness.

Going. The term is applicable both to the awareness of the fact of moving on and to the knowledge of the (true) characteristic qualities of moving on. The terms sitting, standing and lying down, too, are applicable in the general sense of awareness and in the particular sense of knowledge of the (true) characteristic qualities. Here (in this discourse) the particular and not the general sense of awareness is to be taken. [b

From the sort of mere awareness denoted by reference to canines and the like, proceeds the idea of a soul, the perverted perception, with the belief that there is a doer and an experiencer. One who does not uproot or remove that wrong perception owing to non-opposition to that perception and to absence of contemplative practice cannot be called one who develops anything like a subject of meditation.
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Re: anatta and cetana (will, intention): Kamma negated?

Postby robertk » Wed Nov 28, 2012 12:18 pm

Why learning and considering Dhamma is the only way for wisdom - and thus the eighfold path- to grow.
M II, no 95, Cankiisutta.

It is long, for the whole sutta:
<http://www.metta.lk/tipitaka/2Sutta-Pitaka/2Majjhima-Nikaya/
Majjhima2/095-canki-e1.html >

'Good Gotama, now, I know the realising of the truth. How is this attained? Good Gotama, teach me that attainment and realization.'

'Bharadvàja, practising, developing and making much of those same things lead to the realization of the truth. I declare that the realization of the truth is this much.'

'Good Gotama, now I know the realising of the truth. What things are of much help for realising the truth?'

'Bharadvàja, the fourfold endeavour is of much help for the realisation of the truth. If not for the fourfold endeavour, the realisation of the truth is not. Therefore the fourfold endeavour is of much help for the realisation of the truth.'

'Good Gotama, for the fourfold endeavour, what thing is of much help?'

'Bharadvàja, weighing [1] is of much help for the fourfold endeavour. Without the weighing there is no fourfold effort, therefore weighing is of much help for the fourfold endeavour.'

'Good Gotama, for weighing, what thing is of much help?'

'Bharadvàja, struggling [2] is of much help for weighing. Without that struggle there is no weighing, therefore that struggle is of much help for weighing'

'Good Gotama, for struggling, what thing is of much help?'

'Bharadvàja, interest, is of much help for struggling. Without that interest, there is no struggle, therefore that interest is of much help for struggling.'

'Good Gotama, for interest, what thing is of much help?'

'Bharadvàja, rightful speculation [3] is of much help for interest. Without the rightful speculating mind, there is no interest, therefore the rightful speculative mind is of much help for interest.'

'Good Gotama, for a rightful speculative mind, what thing is of much help?'

'Bharadvàja, examining the meanings in the Teaching, is of much help for a rightful speculative mind. Without that examining of meanings in the Teaching, there is norightful speculation, therefore examining
meanings in the Teaching is of much help for a speculative mind.'

'Good Gotama, for examining meanings in the Teaching, what thing is of much help?'

'Bharadvàja, bearing the Teaching in the mind, is of much help for examining meanings in the Teaching. Without bearing the Teaching in mind, there is no examination of meanings, therefore bearing the Teaching in mind is of much help for examining meanings in the Teaching.'

'Good Gotama, for bearing the Teaching in the mind, what thing is of much help?'

'Bharadvàja, listening to the Teaching, is of much help for bearing the Teaching in the mind. Without listening to the Teaching, there is no bearing of the Teaching, therefore listening to the Teaching, is of much help for bearing the Teaching in the mind.'

'Good Gotama, for listening to the Teaching, what thing is of much help?'

'Bharadvàja, lending ear, is of much help for listening to the Teaching. Without lending ear there is no listening to the Teaching, therefore, lending ear, is of much help for listening to the Teaching.'

'Good Gotama, for lending ear, what thing is of much help?'

'Bharadvàja, associating, is of much help for lending ear. Without association there is no lending ears, therefore associating is of much help for lending ear.'

'Good Gotama, for associating, what thing is of much help?'

'Bharadvàja, approaching, is of much help for associating Without an approach there is no association, therefore approaching is of much help for associating.'

'Good Gotama, for approaching, what thing is of much help?'

'Bharadvàja, faith, is of much help for approaching Without faith there is no approaching, therefore faith is of much help for approaching.'...

[1] Weighing is of much help for the fourfold endeavour (padhànassa kho bharadvàja tulanà bahukàrà). The fourfold endeavours are pushing the mind forward earnestly, to dispel arisen demerit to promote non arising of not arisen demerit To promote the arising of not arisen merit and to see the development and completion of arisen merit. For this kind of mental work to happen, we should mentally weigh our activities by body speech and mind. We should be aware of the activities at the six doors of mental contact.

[2] Struggling is of much help for weighing (tulanàya kho bharadvàja ussàho bahukàro hoti). This is a mental struggle. It consists of thinking and pondering to sort out the correct and comes to be right thinking.

[3] Right speculation is of much help for interest (chandassa kho Bharadvàja dhammanijjhànakhanti bahukàrà). Right speculation falls to the category of right thinking. So this is falling to the Noble Eightfold path, with right view at the foremost.
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