Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

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Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby robertk » Fri Jul 30, 2010 2:34 am

One of the moderators of Dhammawheel suggests that Sujin Boriharnwanaket teachings are as 'out there' as the ideas of Daniel 'the arahant" Ingram.

Tilt Billings: '[some]with good reason as any, consider the Sujin take on things, especially vipassana meditation, equally out there as Ingram's approach."

I would like to see the evidence for this.

Lets look at some of Ingram's ideas first:


Daniel: "
For the sake of discussion, and in keeping with standard Buddhist thought, awareness is permanent and unchanging."


"It is also said that, "All things arise from it [referring to awareness], and all things return to it,' though again this implies a false certainty about something which is actually impenetrably mysterious and mixing the concept of infinite potential with awareness is a notoriously dangerous business. We could call it 'God,' 'Nirvana,' 'The Tao,' 'The Void,' 'Allah,' 'Krishna,' 'Intrinsic Luminosity,' 'Buddha Nature,' 'Buddha,' 'Bubba' or just 'awareness' as long as we realize the above caveats, especially that it is not a thing or localized in any particular place and has no definable qualities. Awareness is sometimes conceptualized as pervading all of this while not being all of this, and sometimes conceptualized as being inherent in all of this while not being anything in particular. Neither is quite true, though both perspectives can be useful."

"While phenomena are in flux from their arising to their passing, there is awareness of them. Thus, awareness is not these objects, as it is not a thing, nor is it separate from these objects, as there would be no experience if this were so. By examining our reality just as it is, we may come to understand this.

"Further, phenomena do not exist in the sense of abiding in a fixed way for any length of time, and thus are utterly transitory, and yet the laws that govern the functioning of this utter transience hold. That phenomena do not exist does not mean that there is not a reality, but that this reality is completely inconstant, except for awareness, which is not a thing. This makes no sense to the rational mind, but that is how it is with this stuff."
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Jul 30, 2010 4:12 am

Greetings Robert,

How is Samma Samadhi as a component of the Noble Eightfold Path regarded in the teachings of Sujin Boriharnwanaket?

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


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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby robertk » Fri Jul 30, 2010 4:14 am

It is an essential factor retro.
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Jul 30, 2010 5:14 am

Cool. Thanks Robert.

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: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jul 30, 2010 7:02 am

I would like to see the evidence for this.
You have never seen any critiques of the Sujin style of practice? A scholarly example is found here is an abstract of a paper given at the 2nd International Conference of Sri Lanka Association for Buddhist Studies - 17-19 of November 2006: http://www.beyondthenet.net/SLABS/abstr ... art_57.doc Obviously they are out there. As for myself, finding nothing appealing about her teachings, I do not care.

robertk wrote:It is an essential factor retro.
How are Samma Samadhi and Samma Sati actualized/cultivated? Does not Sujin criticize practices such as the Mahasi Sayadaw style? Is this msg wrong: viewtopic.php?f=18&t=2551&p=35840&hilit=+Sujin#p35840 ?
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby robertk » Fri Jul 30, 2010 9:36 am

there seem to 3 points you are bringing up:

1. a Matthew kosuta (not sure who he is: is he the person you referred to on teh otehr thread who has 'an informed opinion"?)said that according to Sujin, "Cetana as a cetasika is said to only arise, as with all paramattha dhamma, due to “conditions and accumulations”, a person as anatta cannot will another anatta constituent into being. Kamma as traditionally understood in the Sutta literature is thus negated."

Do you think kamma is negated because of the anattaness of elements such as cetana? In fact Sujin's talks on kamma and vipaka range into hundreds of recorded hours. Kamma and its results are given great emphasis, I would say.

2. Some of Sujin's students have questioned the Mahasi technique. But does that mean she is 'out there', as you put it. I think you would have to provide evidence from the texts, what if the criticisims had some justification based on scripture.

I should note that a book by another Burmese 'master' that dissed mahasi technique is banned in burma, so it seems to be a sensitive topic, but I am happy to participate if you want to say anything. Either we can do it here or on that topic you gave a link to (thanks for that).

3. How does one cultivate samma samdhi and Samma sati according to Sujin?
I make a new topic to discuss this in detail. viewtopic.php?f=19&t=5167
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jul 30, 2010 9:49 am

robertk wrote:there seem to 3 points you are bringing up:

1. a Matthew kosuta (not sure who he is: is he the person you referred to on teh otehr thread who has 'an informed opinion"?)said that according to Sujin, "Cetana as a cetasika is said to only arise, as with all paramattha dhamma, due to “conditions and accumulations”, a person as anatta cannot will another anatta constituent into being. Kamma as traditionally understood in the Sutta literature is thus negated."

Do you think kamma is negated because of the anattaness of elements such as cetana? In fact Sujin's talks on kamma and vipaka range into hundreds of recorded hours. Kamma and its results are given great emphasis, I would say.
So, Kevin, a follower of Sujin and a claimant of being ariya, says there is no choice: viewtopic.php?f=13&t=3740&hilit=Perfections&start=560#p56622

2. Some of Sujin's students have questioned the Mahasi technique. But does that mean she is 'out there', as you put it. I think you would have to provide evidence from the texts, what if the criticisims had some justification based on scripture.
Huh? Last sentence not at all clear.

I should note that a book by another Burmese 'master' that dissed mahasi technique is banned in burma, so it seems to be a sensitive topic, but I am happy to participate if you want to say anything. Either we can do it here or on that topic you gave a link to (thanks for that).
That really does not address the issue, however.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby robertk » Fri Jul 30, 2010 10:00 am

[quote="tiltbillings]So, Kevin, a follower of Sujin and a claimant of being ariya, says there is no choice: http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f= ... 560#p56622

.[/quote]
I think kevins claim's should be left aside. As to whether he represents Sujin correctly, that can also be left aside.

How about discussing directly with me here or citing any of Sujin's translated books (which are all available freely on the internet at abhidhamma.org, vipassana.info, zolag.co.uk and several other sites.
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jul 30, 2010 10:03 am

robertk wrote:[quote="tiltbillings]So, Kevin, a follower of Sujin and a claimant of being ariya, says there is no choice: viewtopic.php?f=13&t=3740&hilit=Perfections&start=560#p56622

.[/quote]
I think kevins claim's should be left aside. As to whether he represents Sujin correctly, that can also be left aside. [/quote]Interesting to leave aside a claim of attainment by following Sujin's methods.

[quote]How about discussing directly with me here or citing any of Sujin's translated books (which are all available freely on the internet at abhidhamma.org, vipassana.info, zolag.co.uk and several other sites.[/quote]
So, since you are the /Sujin expert here is there choice? Can one develop vipassana by the choice of cultivating concentration and mindfuylness as is taught by Mahasi Sayadaw according to Sujin's teachings?
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby robertk » Fri Jul 30, 2010 10:06 am

This thread started in the classical section as it was replying to Tilts observation that "sujin's teaching was 'out there'. and I am only interested in replying from a classical Theravada perspective.

Why has it been moved to free for all?
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jul 30, 2010 10:10 am

robertk wrote:This thread started in the classical section as it was replying to Tilts observation that "sujin's teaching was 'out there'. and I am only interested in replying from a classical Theravada perspective.

Why has it been moved to free for all?
Is Sujin solidly in line with Buddhaghosa and his discussuion of meditation and, for example, dry insight?
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jul 30, 2010 10:17 am

Robert,

Is Ven Dhammanando wrong here?: viewtopic.php?f=18&t=2551&p=35840&hilit=+Sujin#p35840
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby robertk » Fri Jul 30, 2010 10:23 am

tiltbillings wrote:
robertk wrote:This thread started in the classical section as it was replying to Tilts observation that "sujin's teaching was 'out there'. and I am only interested in replying from a classical Theravada perspective.

Why has it been moved to free for all?
Is Sujin solidly in line with Buddhaghosa and his discussuion of meditation and, for example, dry insight?


yes, I would say exacly in line with Buddhaghosa. Let's leave ven. Dhammanando out of this as he appears to be inactive on this site.
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jul 30, 2010 10:30 am

robertk wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
robertk wrote:This thread started in the classical section as it was replying to Tilts observation that "sujin's teaching was 'out there'. and I am only interested in replying from a classical Theravada perspective.

Why has it been moved to free for all?
Is Sujin solidly in line with Buddhaghosa and his discussuion of meditation and, for example, dry insight?


yes, I would say exacly in line with Buddhaghosa.
So, she would have no problem with those practices, such as taught by U Ba Khin and Mahasi Sayadaw, which are derived from the Visuddhimagga. Good to hear.

Let's leave ven. Dhammanando out of this as he appears to be inactive on this site.
It is simple enough to answer if this correct or not: What the Sujinists reject is the very idea that there is such a thing as a formal method by which satipatthana and vipassana can be developed. And so their critique is not directed merely against this or that proposed satipatthana method but against all proposed methods and any conceivable method that anyone might ever care to propose. If you want I'll put it into my own words to ask the question.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby robertk » Fri Jul 30, 2010 10:49 am

It all depends what you mean by a formal method? If you mean someone sits down and listens to a teacher tell them do this or do that, concentrate on the top of your head for x amount of time, or move your hands slowly up and down, then move your awareness to this or that part of the body , walk slowly or quickly, sit for hours and focus on pain, etc. ...she would not be supportive.

If you define it as fulfilling the conditions for ariya as explained in the suttas , to wit:

'Lord, association with the upright is a limb of stream-winning. Hearing the good Dhamma is a limb of stream-winning. Applying the mind is a limb of stream-winning. Conforming to the Dhamma is a limb of stream-winning
.'
then she would be very supportive.
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jul 30, 2010 10:56 am

robertk wrote:It all depends what you mean by a formal method? If you mean someone sits down and listens to a teacher tell them do this or do that, concentrate on the top of your head for x amount of time, or move your hands slowly up and down, then move your awareness to this or that part of the body , walk slowly or quickly, sit for hours and focus on pain, etc. ...she would not be supportive.
Of course, you can caricature it this way, but there is a great deal more going on than what you are describing. Again, the Burmese mindfulness practices come out of the Visuddhimagga discussion of dry insight. The use of techniques to cultivate concentration and mindfulness are skillful means, not the real practice, which is attending to what is seen, heard, sensed, and cognized with an attentive, concentrated mind. Are you saying she would reject that?
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby robertk » Fri Jul 30, 2010 11:42 am

[quote="tiltbillings. The use of techniques to cultivate concentration and mindfulness are skillful means, not the real practice, which is attending to what is seen, heard, sensed, and cognized with an attentive, concentrated mind. Are you saying she would reject that?[/quote]

She would say the real practice is when there is sati and sampajana that knows/experiences/insights what is seen, heard, sensed, and cognized.

Khanika(momentary) samadhi is certainly present at such moments as is [yoniso] manisikara (attention) and of course one can easily have these elements- in fact one cannot stop them arising. But khanika samadhi and yoniso arise with both kusala and akusala moments.

The hard part is having the ones that come with sati-sampajana - and these factors do not arise with every moment.

Focusing and concentring and wishing will not make them arise.
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby robertk » Fri Jul 30, 2010 11:56 am

tiltbillings wrote:
robertk wrote:there seem to 3 points you are bringing up:

1. a Matthew kosuta (not sure who he is: is he the person you referred to on teh otehr thread who has 'an informed opinion"?)said that according to Sujin, "Cetana as a cetasika is said to only arise, as with all paramattha dhamma, due to “conditions and accumulations”, a person as anatta cannot will another anatta constituent into being. Kamma as traditionally understood in the Sutta literature is thus negated."

So, Kevin, a follower of Sujin and a claimant of being ariya, says there is no choice: viewtopic.php?f=13&t=3740&hilit=Perfections&start=560#p56622

[

Perhaps read this thread where one of Nina van Gorkom's articles on kamma is posted and if you agree/disagree with it tell us.(Nina is a longtime student of Sujin)
viewtopic.php?f=18&t=336&p=3220&hilit=+Gorkom#p3220
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Jul 30, 2010 12:19 pm

robertk wrote:
tiltbillings wrote: The use of techniques to cultivate concentration and mindfulness are skillful means, not the real practice, which is attending to what is seen, heard, sensed, and cognized with an attentive, concentrated mind. Are you saying she would reject that?


She would say the real practice is when there is sati and sampajana that knows/experiences/insights what is seen, heard, sensed, and cognized.

Khanika(momentary) samadhi is certainly present at such moments as is [yoniso] manisikara (attention) and of course one can easily have these elements- in fact one cannot stop them arising. But khanika samadhi and yoniso arise with both kusala and akusala moments.

The hard part is having the ones that come with sati-sampajana - and these factors do not arise with every moment.

Focusing and concentring and wishing will not make them arise.
So, following the practice outline by U Ba Khin or Mahasi Sayadaw these postive things can be developed.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Sujin Boriharnwanaket: teaching's diverge from Theravada?

Postby robertk » Mon Aug 02, 2010 10:08 am

More about kamma and anatta here:

viewtopic.php?f=18&t=5195
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