Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

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mikenz66
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Re: Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

Post by mikenz66 » Mon Oct 31, 2011 7:39 pm

Ñāṇa wrote:
mikenz66 wrote:Hi Dave,
daverupa wrote: I'd like to see a Sutta with only paramattha language, as pertains to bhavana. Can one be provided?
From my point of view there are hundreds, starting with the second discourse:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
*Sigh* :tongue: How is any word of that discourse paramattha Mike?
Well, sorry, but I really have trouble figuring out what Dave is trying to ask, so I pointed out, yet again, that that whole discourse is framed in terms of khandhas, not in terms of "conventional beings".

I have been trying to avoid the term "paramattha" but I assumed that this was the sense that Dave was using it. Another possible reply would have been that there in no "paramattha" in the suttas in this sense...

:anjali:
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Re: Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

Post by Nyana » Mon Oct 31, 2011 7:56 pm

mikenz66 wrote:Well, sorry, but I really have trouble figuring out what Dave is trying to ask, so I pointed out, yet again, that that whole discourse is framed in terms of khandhas, not in terms of "conventional beings".

I have been trying to avoid the term "paramattha" but I assumed that this was the sense that Dave was using it. Another possible reply would have been that there in no "paramattha" in the suttas in this sense...
No need to apologize to me Mike. I think you're a pretty straight up guy. But for what it's worth, I'd suggest that your other possible reply is probably more accurate: there in no "paramattha" in the suttas in this sense...

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Re: Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

Post by daverupa » Mon Oct 31, 2011 9:59 pm

mikenz66 wrote: that whole discourse is framed in terms of khandhas, not in terms of "conventional beings".
My point is perhaps too subtle to appear meaningful:
...to be seen as it actually is with right discernment as: 'This is not mine. This is not my self. This is not what I am.'

"Seeing thus, the well-instructed disciple of the noble ones grows disenchanted...
Talk of khandas, and then instantly a reference to a being. The whole discourse is not framed in terms of khandas, else there could be no reference to a being such as a disciple; it is not framed in purely ultimate terms because no Sutta is - throughout the Suttas the Buddha teaches without using such affectations.

The abhidhamma et al, whence the two truth idea, attempts such affectations. The Buddha never does. This is really the whole of the point: understanding Sutta-based bhavana cannot proceed via these sorts of interpolated dichotomies without such artifice becoming obfuscatory because such artifice always intervenes between the Buddha's words and the reader's understanding. Some artifice (English is not Pali, for example) is unavoidable for most; but keeping these things thin on the ground is of paramount importance, is it not?
  • "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: Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

Post by mikenz66 » Tue Nov 01, 2011 1:43 am

daverupa wrote: My point is perhaps too subtle to appear meaningful:
...
Perhaps. It's certainly too subtle for me to be particularly concerned with...

:anjali:
Mike

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Re: Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

Post by retrofuturist » Tue Nov 01, 2011 1:50 am

Greetings Mike,

If I understand Dave's point correctly, adding "interpolated dichotomies" (Dave's words), which are sankharas (my words), runs counter to the intent to 'progress through a series of "peeling away layers of delusion"' (your words).

Less is more, more or less.

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Re: Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

Post by tiltbillings » Tue Nov 01, 2011 1:57 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Mike,

If I understand Dave's point correctly, adding "interpolated dichotomies" (Dave's words), which are sankharas (my words), runs counter to the intent to 'progress through a series of "peeling away layers of delusion"' (your words).

Less is more, more or less.

Metta,
Retro. :)
But how much of a dichotomy actually is there? The conventional language and the more precise language are talking about the same thing; they are often used together, but without understanding the differences, mistakes can be made. So, what is actually meant by dichotomy here? I thought this has already been settled.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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Re: Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

Post by retrofuturist » Tue Nov 01, 2011 1:59 am

Greetings Tilt,

I don't know, you'll have to ask Dave... I was just hoping to rephrase Dave's comments to assist Mike in understanding the point that Dave is attempting to communicate. Facilitation, as it were.

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Re: Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

Post by tiltbillings » Tue Nov 01, 2011 2:00 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Tilt,

I don't know, you'll have to ask Dave... I was just hoping to rephrase Dave's comments to assist Mike in understanding the point that Dave is attempting to communicate. Facilitation, as it were.

Metta,
Retro. :)
I think dave has missed the point on this.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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Re: Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

Post by mikenz66 » Tue Nov 01, 2011 2:22 am

Hi Retro,

Personally, I see Dave's point as merely being picky about the language. In my opinion, has little relevance. Others clearly disagree, but if they were going to look at it seriously they'd need to carefully examine the Pali syntax.

:anjali:
Mike

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Re: Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

Post by daverupa » Tue Nov 01, 2011 2:42 am

It's a matter of small degrees becoming large degrees, but I'll not press the point. It's obviously not something others are interested in pursuing.

:alien:
  • "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: Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

Post by tiltbillings » Tue Nov 01, 2011 4:50 am

daverupa wrote:It's a matter of small degrees becoming large degrees, but I'll not press the point. It's obviously not something others are interested in pursuing.
Not :alien:

more like: Image
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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Re: Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

Post by chownah » Tue Nov 01, 2011 12:49 pm

mikenz66 wrote:Hi Dave,
daverupa wrote: I'd like to see a Sutta with only paramattha language, as pertains to bhavana. Can one be provided?
From my point of view there are hundreds, starting with the second discourse:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

:anjali:
Mike
Mikenz66,
I just had an idea....maybe a bad one......you indicate that this sutta uses only paramattha language......it seems to me that if there are "two truths" then the truth of this sutta could be expressed in non-paramattha terms.....it seems unlikely to me but I thought that maybe trying to do this would yield some foothold on some kind of understanding....maybe not.....just an idea......I've been sort of brainstorming on this two truths idea and when I brainstorm often what washes up onshore is just flotsam and jetsum of the discardable kind.....
chownah

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Re: Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

Post by Sylvester » Thu Nov 03, 2011 7:00 am

To add to Karunadasa's listing of suttanta ideas of 2 truths, there is also the division between pariyayena (with elucidation/metaphorical) versus nippariyayena (without elucidation/literal) used.

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Re: Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

Post by tiltbillings » Thu Nov 03, 2011 7:04 am

Sylvester wrote:To add to Karunadasa's listing of suttanta ideas of 2 truths, there is also the division between pariyayena (with elucidation/metaphorical) versus nippariyayena (without elucidation/literal) used.
And I know that you would be delighted to expand in that in clear, concise English.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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Re: Two "truths"/"descriptions" and meditation in the suttas

Post by Sylvester » Thu Nov 03, 2011 7:16 am

Sorry, that will have to wait until the World Tipitaka site is up again. I tried accessing it just now, to use its search engine to generate all the suttanta occurences of these 2 words. My browser went into a seizure because of that site.

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