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50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 9:41 am
by Rhino
50 years ago (27.6.1959) the English Bhikkhu Nanavira Thera attained sotapatti (stream-winner):
NAMO TASSA BHAGAVATO ARAHATO SAMMĀSAMBUDDHASSA

—Ekam samayam Ñānavīro bhikkhu Būndalagāme viharati araññakutikāyam. Tena kho pana samayena Ñānavīro bhikkhu rattiyā pathamam yāmam cankamena āvaranīyehi dhammehi cittam parisodheti, yathāsutam yathāpariyattam dhammam cetasā anuvitakketi anuvicāreti manasānupekkhati. Atha kho Ñānavīrassa bhikkhuno evam yathāsutam yathāpariyattam dhammam cetasā anuvitakkayato anuvicārayato manasānupekkhato virajam vītamalam dhammacakkhum udapādi, Yam kiñci samudayadhammam sabbam tam nirodhadhammanti.
So dhammānusārī māsam hutvā ditthipatto hoti.
(27.6.1959)

'Atthi Kassapa maggo atthi patipadā yathā patipanno sāmam yeva ñassati sāmam dakkhīti, Samano va Gotamo kālavādī bhūtavādī atthavādī dhammavādī vinayavādīti.'


'Ditthivisūkāni upātivatto,
Patto niyāmam patiladdhamaggo,
Uppannañāno 'mhi anaññaneyyo
Eko care khaggavisānakappo'

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HOMAGE TO THE AUSPICIOUS ONE, WORTHY, FULLY AWAKENED

—At one time the monk Ñānavīra was staying in a forest hut near Bundala village. It was during that time, as he was walking up and down in the first watch of the night, that the monk Ñānavīra made his mind quite pure of constraining things, and kept thinking and pondering and reflexively observing the Dhamma as he had heard and learnt it. Then, while the monk Ñānavīra was thus engaged in thinking and pondering and reflexively observing the Dhamma as he had heard and learnt it, the clear and stainless Eye of the Dhamma arose in him: 'Whatever has the nature of arising, all that has the nature of ceasing.'
Having been a teaching-follower for a month, he became one attained to right view.[1]
(27.6.1959)

There is, Kassapa, a path, there is a way by following which one will come to know and see for oneself: 'Indeed, the recluse Gotama speaks at the proper time, speaks on what is, speaks on the purpose, speaks on Dhamma, speaks on Vinaya.' [D. 8: i,165]

'I have gone beyond the writhings of view.
With the path gained I have arrived at assurance.
Knowledge has arisen in me and I am no longer to be guided by another.'
-- [Knowing this,] let him fare lonely as the unicorn! [Suttanipāta 3,21 (verse 55, page 9)]
More about Nanavira:
http://www.nanavira.org/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nanavira_Thera

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 4:57 pm
by woini
The venerable did self-inflicted euthanasia on himself, suffering from terminal illness.

Does Buddhism - Theravada condone euthanasia?

Can a sotapanna inflict or allow euthanasia?

I have heard conflicting opinions.

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 5:55 pm
by tiltbillings
English Bhikkhu Nanavira Thera attained sotapatti (stream-winner):
Says who?

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 6:18 pm
by clw_uk
tiltbillings wrote:
English Bhikkhu Nanavira Thera attained sotapatti (stream-winner):
Says who?

I think he says so himself in one of his letters or books

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 6:27 pm
by tiltbillings
clw_uk wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
English Bhikkhu Nanavira Thera attained sotapatti (stream-winner):
Says who?

I think he says so himself in one of his letters or books
Which likely puts him in violation of the Vinaya, but it is all too easy for one to assume that one's experiences are more than they are. It happens all the time. How was Nanvira's supposed attainment verified, by whom?

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 6:30 pm
by clw_uk
Which likely puts him in violation of the Vinaya, but it is all too easy for one to assume that one's experiences are more than they are. It happens all the time. How was Nanvira's supposed attainment verified, by whom?

:shrug:

How does it get verified by others anyway?

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 6:33 pm
by tiltbillings
How does it get verified by others anyway?
You might want to actually learn about the tradition you are supposedly following.

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 6:35 pm
by clw_uk
tiltbillings wrote:
How does it get verified by others anyway?
You might want to actually learn about the tradition you are supposedly following.

Isnt learning an ongoing process? And how can i learn without asking questions?

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 6:47 pm
by tiltbillings
And how can i learn without asking questions?
Interesting, given that you have lectured us enough here about the naughtiness of rebirth, but since you are willing to ask question, I can only hope you are willing to listen.

Traditionally when a monastic thinks that they have attained a level or Ariya they go to elder monks who have experience to be "tested," to see if the claim of experience meets the criteria spelled out by the tradition. It is fairly simple and it helps to prevent the not unusual trip down the garden path that can likely follow from unusual meditative experiences. We have seen the results of that here.

Ultimately, however, if you are going to take Ven Sumedho seriously, stream entry is just one more thing of which to let go. As for Nanavira, he is an interesting character, but not a very good scholar.

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 6:58 pm
by clw_uk
tiltbillings wrote:
And how can i learn without asking questions?
Interesting, given that you have lectured us enough here about the naughtiness of rebirth, but since you are willing to ask question, I can only hope you are willing to listen.

Traditionally when a monastic thinks that they have attained a level or Ariya they go to elder monks who have experience to be "tested," to see if the claim of experience meets the criteria spelled out by the tradition. It is fairly simple and it helps to prevent the not unusual trip down the garden path that can likely follow from unusual meditative experiences. We have seen the results of that here.

Ultimately, however, if you are going to take Ven Sumedho seriously, stream entry is just one more thing of which to let go. As for Nanavira, he is an interesting character, but not a very good scholar.

Thank you Tilt :smile:


Metta

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 8:38 pm
by gavesako
"Do not be a bodhisattva, do not be an arahant, do not be anything at all. If you are a bodhisattva, you will suffer, if you are an arahant, you will suffer, if you are anything at all, you will suffer."

--Ajahn Chah

:anjali:

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 8:53 pm
by acinteyyo
:goodpost:
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woini wrote:The venerable did self-inflicted euthanasia on himself, suffering from terminal illness.

Does Buddhism - Theravada condone euthanasia?

Can a sotapanna inflict or allow euthanasia?

I have heard conflicting opinions.
There is a Sutta (MN144) about the bhikkhu Channo who committed suicide. The Buddha said there are certain circumstances whether to commit suicide is a fault or not. Unfortunately I don't know exactly which circumstances but the Sutta helps to get an idea of it.

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Sat Jun 27, 2009 12:15 am
by Cittasanto
woini wrote:The venerable did self-inflicted euthanasia on himself, suffering from terminal illness.

Does Buddhism - Theravada condone euthanasia?

Can a sotapanna inflict or allow euthanasia?

I have heard conflicting opinions.
Hi Woini,
Have a look at SN 35.87 (4) Channa. BB translation it would apear Channa was already an Arahant at this time, although I think the commentary says otherwise?

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Sat Jun 27, 2009 12:16 am
by Cittasanto
gavesako wrote:"Do not be a bodhisattva, do not be an arahant, do not be anything at all. If you are a bodhisattva, you will suffer, if you are an arahant, you will suffer, if you are anything at all, you will suffer."

--Ajahn Chah

:anjali:
:anjali: :bow: :anjali: :goodpost:

Nice pic BTW

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Sat Jun 27, 2009 12:41 am
by Rhino
woini wrote:The venerable did self-inflicted euthanasia on himself, suffering from terminal illness.

Does Buddhism - Theravada condone euthanasia?

Can a sotapanna inflict or allow euthanasia?

I have heard conflicting opinions.
Hello,
Nanavira talked about it in some letters:
http://nanavira.xtreemhost.com/index.ph ... &Itemid=49
http://nanavira.xtreemhost.com/index.ph ... &Itemid=50
http://nanavira.xtreemhost.com/index.ph ... &Itemid=50

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Sat Jun 27, 2009 12:45 am
by Rhino
clw_uk wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
English Bhikkhu Nanavira Thera attained sotapatti (stream-winner):
Says who?

I think he says so himself in one of his letters or books
The quote in my first post is from a letter to the Colombo Thera.
During his stay in Colombo the author handed over L. 1 to the Colombo Thera. The envelope of L. 1 was inscribed: 'In the event of my death, this envelope should be delivered to, and opened by, the senior bhikkhu of the Island Hermitage, Dodanduwa. Ñānavīra Bhikkhu, 20th September 1960.' Apparently the letter had been kept at Bundala until 1964, when it was handed over already opened and its contents were then discussed. This discussion became known to others, and thus the author's attainment of sotāpatti came to be known (and accepted and denied and debated) even before his death.
Source: http://nanavira.xtreemhost.com/index.ph ... d=51#n97-2

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Sat Jun 27, 2009 1:28 am
by Ben
Dear Bhante
gavesako wrote:"Do not be a bodhisattva, do not be an arahant, do not be anything at all. If you are a bodhisattva, you will suffer, if you are an arahant, you will suffer, if you are anything at all, you will suffer."

--Ajahn Chah

:anjali:
That is an interesting quote from Luang Por Ajahn Chah. However, it appears to this deluded human being (me) that Ajahn is not only discouraging one from attaining the noblest aspirations, but also seems to be contra to the Buddha's teaching that ariya aṭṭhangika magga is the way to the end of suffering.
I would appreciate your comments.
Thank you for your kind consideration.
Metta

Ben

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Sat Jun 27, 2009 1:43 am
by woini
http://dharmafarer.googlepages.com/majjhimanikaaya" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
see M 144 pdf
suggests commentaries and Canon are opposed to suicide & euthanasia
the ven. in suttas attained enlightenment after using the knife, not before (acc. to commentaries)
it is never encouraged it is not the heinous offense it is sometimes popularly thought to be, and that the consequences of the act will vary according to circumstances—for the puthujjana they can be disastrous, but for the arahat (the Venerable Channa Thera—S. XXXV,87: iv,55-60—for example) they are nil. (acc. to Nanavira)


Is it down to Nanavira vs. commentaries ? or do other Buddhists suggest euthan. as sometimes acceptable ?

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Sat Jun 27, 2009 2:10 am
by Ben
Hi Woini,
woini wrote:Is it down to Nanavira vs. commentaries ? or do other Buddhists suggest euthan. as sometimes acceptable ?
Except for those instances in the suttas where the Buddha detailed the context of the condition of the mind of the monk who has committed suicide, I've never seen the practice of suicide justified or deemed acceptable by reputable teachers.
In my mind, Venerable Nanavira's suicide calls into question his claimed attainments.
Metta

Ben

Re: 50th Anniversary of Nanavira's sotapatti

Posted: Sat Jun 27, 2009 3:17 am
by mikenz66
Ben wrote:
gavesako wrote:"Do not be a bodhisattva, do not be an arahant, do not be anything at all. If you are a bodhisattva, you will suffer, if you are an arahant, you will suffer, if you are anything at all, you will suffer."
--Ajahn Chah
That is an interesting quote from Luang Por Ajahn Chah. However, it appears to this deluded human being (me) that Ajahn is not only discouraging one from attaining the noblest aspirations, but also seems to be contra to the Buddha's teaching that ariya aṭṭhangika magga is the way to the end of suffering.
I interpret it as a more flowery way of saying that the implied "wanting" and the "me" ("you" in the quote) are the problem.

Like in this quote:
http://www.ajahnchah.org/book/Listening ... _Words.php" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Let's consider: For what purpose are we living? What do we want from our work? We are living in this world; for what purpose are we living? We do our work; what do we want to get from our work? In the worldly way, people do their work because they want certain things and this is what they consider logical. But the Buddha's teaching goes a step beyond this. It says, do your work without desiring anything. In the world, you do this to get that; you do that to get this; you are always doing something in order to get something as a result. That's the way of worldly folk. The Buddha says, work for the sake of work without wanting anything.

Whenever we work with the desire for something, we suffer. Check this out.
Personally I have a bit of an aversion (hmm, something to work on...) to Ajahn Chah "soundbites". Often context is important...

Mike