the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

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form
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the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by form » Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:32 pm

Dependant origination, Four noble truths, sense bases, five aggregates, five hindrances, seven factors of enlightenment, should the dharma be examined as a whole rather than fragments?

DooDoot
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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by DooDoot » Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:41 pm

I think they can be examined as a whole, which includes anapanasati & satipatthana.
Friends, just as the footprint of any living being that walks can be placed within an elephant’s footprint, and so the elephant’s footprint is declared the chief of them because of its great size; so too, all wholesome states can be included in the Four Noble Truths. In what four? In the noble truth of suffering, in the noble truth of the origin of suffering, in the noble truth of the cessation of suffering, and in the noble truth of the way leading to the cessation of suffering.

Now this has been said by the Blessed One: “One who sees dependent origination sees the Dhamma; one who sees the Dhamma sees dependent origination.” And these five aggregates affected by clinging are dependently arisen. The desire, indulgence, inclination, and holding based on these five aggregates affected by clinging is the origin of suffering. The removal of desire and lust, the abandonment of desire and lust for these five aggregates affected by clinging is the cessation of suffering.’

MN 28

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by chownah » Fri Oct 13, 2017 2:45 am

I think it depends on the individual. In the suttas some people got just a single lesson and they were released and some people took a very long time with exposure to alot of lessons (ananda comes to mind) before they were released.
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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by retrofuturist » Fri Oct 13, 2017 3:08 am

Greetings form,
form wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:32 pm
Dependant origination, Four noble truths, sense bases, five aggregates, five hindrances, seven factors of enlightenment, should the dharma be examined as a whole rather than fragments?
It is both reasonable and appropriate for each schema to be used in isolation or in conjunction with other teachings from the suttas.

Do recall that sutta literally means thread, and to weave a basket, you require multiple threads.

In that spirit, I find that the best Dhamma teachers aren't those who invent their own techniques or Dhamma, but rather, those that guide their readers or listeners through the suttas, bringing in references from related suttas, which can flesh out or clarify the meaning of what is said there and elsewhere in the Sutta Pitaka.

Metta,
Paul. :)
"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)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by binocular » Fri Oct 13, 2017 9:51 am

form wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:32 pm
Dependant origination, Four noble truths, sense bases, five aggregates, five hindrances, seven factors of enlightenment, should the dharma be examined as a whole rather than fragments?
What would that be, "to examine the Dhamma as a whole rather than fragments"?

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by Sam Vara » Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:13 am

Fragments can speak to us very powerfully, often because they directly address problems and preoccupations that have been afflicting us. But if we can see how these fragments are woven together into a whole teaching with a single purpose, it can offer us something else: a sense of confidence in the Triple Gem, and a desire to move on to different teachings. It's a bit like the "coherence theory" of truth; the different bits are true because they hang together and are consistent and mutually supportive.

I suspect we are fortunate if we can achieve that holistic view, however. It depends on our "reading" of the texts. Some scholars have made an impressive job of presenting the Dhamma as a consistent whole (I'm thinking mainly of Richard Gombrich, Sue Hamilton, and Nanavira here, although other people will doubtless prefer different presentations). But there are many more which are unconvincing and disappointing on that level because they achieve coherence through attributing meaning that we cannot agree with.

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by binocular » Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:45 am

Sam Vara wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:13 am
Fragments can speak to us very powerfully, often because they directly address problems and preoccupations that have been afflicting us. But if we can see how these fragments are woven together into a whole teaching with a single purpose, it can offer us something else: a sense of confidence in the Triple Gem, and a desire to move on to different teachings. It's a bit like the "coherence theory" of truth; the different bits are true because they hang together and are consistent and mutually supportive.
Interesting, I haven't thought of that. I'm a holist by nature, and I struggle with the problems that are usually pointed out for holism (primarily that a term or a claim cannot be understood or related to unless one has mastered its native context, which makes learning and understanding difficult or impossible).
Mental (or semantic) holism is the doctrine that the identity of a belief content (or the meaning of a sentence that expresses it) is determined by its place in the web of beliefs or sentences comprising a whole theory or group of theories. It can be contrasted with two other views: atomism and molecularism. Molecularism characterizes meaning and content in terms of relatively small parts of the web in a way that allows many different theories to share those parts. For example, the meaning of ‘chase’ might be said by a molecularist to be ‘try to catch’. Atomism characterizes meaning and content in terms of none of the web; it says that sentences and beliefs have meaning or content independently of their relations to other sentences or beliefs.

One major motivation for holism has come from reflections on the natures of confirmation and learning. As Quine observed, claims about the world are confirmed not individually but only in conjunction with theories of which they are a part. And, typically, one cannot come to understand scientific claims without understanding a significant chunk of the theory of which they are a part. For example, in learning the Newtonian concepts of ‘force’, ‘mass’, ‘kinetic energy’ and ‘momentum’, one does not learn any definitions of these terms in terms that are understood beforehand, for there are no such definitions. Rather, these theoretical terms are all learned together in conjunction with procedures for solving problems.

Holism, Mental and Semantic
(emphasis mine)
The fragmented view mentioned earlier would be similar to semantic molecularism or atomism.

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by Bundokji » Fri Oct 13, 2017 12:19 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:13 am
Fragments can speak to us very powerfully, often because they directly address problems and preoccupations that have been afflicting us. But if we can see how these fragments are woven together into a whole teaching with a single purpose, it can offer us something else: a sense of confidence in the Triple Gem, and a desire to move on to different teachings. It's a bit like the "coherence theory" of truth; the different bits are true because they hang together and are consistent and mutually supportive.

I suspect we are fortunate if we can achieve that holistic view, however. It depends on our "reading" of the texts. Some scholars have made an impressive job of presenting the Dhamma as a consistent whole (I'm thinking mainly of Richard Gombrich, Sue Hamilton, and Nanavira here, although other people will doubtless prefer different presentations). But there are many more which are unconvincing and disappointing on that level because they achieve coherence through attributing meaning that we cannot agree with.
Coherence is our attempt to find order. We usually come up with theories to explain phenomena, and this includes control of conditions (which ultimately cannot be controlled) and reliance on metaphysical assumptions (that things exist independently) which Buddhism seems to disagree with.
“It happened that a fire broke out backstage in a theater. The clown came out to inform the public. They thought it was a jest and applauded. He repeated his warning. They shouted even louder. So I think the world will come to an end amid the general applause from all the wits who believe that it is a joke.”
Søren Kierkegaard

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by Sam Vara » Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:09 pm

Bundokji wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 12:19 pm

Coherence is our attempt to find order.
Or is, perhaps, the order that we find, the order that is there whether we attempt to find it or not.

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by binocular » Fri Oct 13, 2017 4:37 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:09 pm
Bundokji wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 12:19 pm
Coherence is our attempt to find order.
Or is, perhaps, the order that we find, the order that is there whether we attempt to find it or not.
I think this falls under the heading of bestial topics of conversation.

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by Sam Vara » Fri Oct 13, 2017 5:16 pm

binocular wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 4:37 pm
I think this falls under the heading of bestial topics of conversation.
Why so?

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by binocular » Fri Oct 13, 2017 6:20 pm

kinds of bestial topics of conversation: conversation about kings, robbers, & ministers of state; armies, alarms, & battles; food & drink; clothing, furniture, garlands, & scents; relatives; vehicles; villages, towns, cities, the countryside; women & heroes; the gossip of the street & the well; tales of the dead; tales of diversity, the creation of the world & of the sea; talk of whether things exist or not.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
I find talking about how the world is or isn't ordered falls under the heading "creation of the world & of the sea" and "talk of whether things exist or not."

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by Sam Vara » Fri Oct 13, 2017 7:44 pm

binocular wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 6:20 pm
kinds of bestial topics of conversation: conversation about kings, robbers, & ministers of state; armies, alarms, & battles; food & drink; clothing, furniture, garlands, & scents; relatives; vehicles; villages, towns, cities, the countryside; women & heroes; the gossip of the street & the well; tales of the dead; tales of diversity, the creation of the world & of the sea; talk of whether things exist or not.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
I find talking about how the world is or isn't ordered falls under the heading "creation of the world & of the sea" and "talk of whether things exist or not."
Ah, sorry - I understand now. But I wasn't referring to the creation of the world and sea, or the existence of things. I was referring to the coherence of what the Buddha thought and taught. Not really a matter of ontology or speculative history, but the extent to which the teachings hang together as a unity.

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by paul » Fri Oct 13, 2017 8:25 pm

“The essence of the Buddha's teaching can be summed up in two principles: the Four Noble Truths and the Noble Eightfold Path. The first covers the side of doctrine, and the primary response it elicits is understanding; the second covers the side of discipline, in the broadest sense of that word, and the primary response it calls for is practice. In the structure of the teaching these two principles lock together into an indivisible unity called the dhamma-vinaya, the doctrine-and-discipline, or, in brief, the Dhamma. The internal unity of the Dhamma is guaranteed by the fact that the last of the Four Noble Truths, the truth of the way, is the Noble Eightfold Path, while the first factor of the Noble Eightfold Path, right view, is the understanding of the Four Noble Truths. Thus the two principles penetrate and include one another, the formula of the Four Noble Truths containing the Eightfold Path and the Noble Eightfold Path containing the Four Truths.
Given this integral unity, it would be pointless to pose the question which of the two aspects of the Dhamma has greater value, the doctrine or the path. But if we did risk the pointless by asking that question, the answer would have to be the path. The path claims primacy because it is precisely this that brings the teaching to life. The path translates the Dhamma from a collection of abstract formulas into a continually unfolding disclosure of truth. It gives an outlet from the problem of suffering with which the teaching starts. And it makes the teaching's goal, liberation from suffering, accessible to us in our own experience, where alone it takes on authentic meaning.”—-“The Noble Eightfold Path”, Bikkhu Bodhi.

The integral unity of the dhamma should be understood, and the key to doing so is verification in daily life.
Note: The conclusion should not be drawn that right view is a fixed component, it is continually evolving dependent on the input of insight.

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by Bundokji » Sat Oct 14, 2017 8:10 am

paul wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 8:25 pm
Note: The conclusion should not be drawn that right view is a fixed component, it is continually evolving dependent on the input of insight.
Thanks paul,

If right view is not a fixed component, then having any sort of conclusion (fixed views) causes learning to stop. Is not the attempt to find coherence is the attempt to reach a conclusion (an end of suffering)?

I can see how the above leads to self improvement (through evolving), but i cannot understand how it leads to end suffering.

Why the above is not self contradictory?
“It happened that a fire broke out backstage in a theater. The clown came out to inform the public. They thought it was a jest and applauded. He repeated his warning. They shouted even louder. So I think the world will come to an end amid the general applause from all the wits who believe that it is a joke.”
Søren Kierkegaard

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by paul » Sat Oct 14, 2017 11:28 am

There is a contradiction between the path, which is conditioned, and nibbana, which is unconditioned. In MN 22 it describes how after reaching the further shore, the raft of the dhamma is abandoned. When I say that right view is evolving, it refers to the period of crossing over, when the raft of the dhamma is being utilized. When right view sees the four noble truths, then the further shore has been reached. It is unrealistic and not profitable to exclusively direct your practice to the stage of having reached the further shore, when the majority of the time in the crossing over period you are dealing with refining fabrications which entail the evolution of right view. People who talk of their practice solely in terms of the end of suffering, haven't implemented the dhamma experientially, they are standing on the shore discussing what's over the horizon. Sila is the foundation of the practice, and it requires an effort of will.

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by Saengnapha » Sun Oct 15, 2017 4:52 am

paul wrote:
Sat Oct 14, 2017 11:28 am
There is a contradiction between the path, which is conditioned, and nibbana, which is unconditioned. In MN 22 it describes how after reaching the further shore, the raft of the dhamma is abandoned. When I say that right view is evolving, it refers to the period of crossing over, when the raft of the dhamma is being utilized. When right view sees the four noble truths, then the further shore has been reached. It is unrealistic and not profitable to exclusively direct your practice to the stage of having reached the further shore, when the majority of the time in the crossing over period you are dealing with refining fabrications which entail the evolution of right view. People who talk of their practice solely in terms of the end of suffering, haven't implemented the dhamma experientially, they are standing on the shore discussing what's over the horizon. Sila is the foundation of the practice, and it requires an effort of will.
I have a hard time with this conception of a path, which you call conditioned (I agree) that you use to reach nibbana, which is not conditioned(supposedly). By using simple Buddhist logic, that which is conditioned has a cause. How can a path ever cause nibbana which is causeless, as they say? You might say path is a provisional teaching that is to be discarded, but it doesn't follow that the conditioned leads to the unconditioned. While I agree with you about the conceptual position of standing on the other shore talking about the end of suffering, isn't it more appropriate to forget about the other shore and be present to your own experience, whatever that may be, and not have the other shore be a goal? Your presentation of all this seems to be predicated on a lot of suppositions and beliefs. And, no amount of will is going to end up 'on the other shore'. The whole picture needs an adjustment for your viewing pleasure.

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by DooDoot » Sun Oct 15, 2017 5:43 am

Saengnapha wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 4:52 am
I have a hard time with this conception of a path, which you call conditioned (I agree) that you use to reach nibbana, which is not conditioned(supposedly).
I say there is no contradiction because what is conditioned is not necessarily suffering. The path is the gradual penetration & tasting of Nibbana, until arahantship. The enterer of the path both (simultaneously) uses the conditioned will (to abandon craving) & experiences Nibbana (liberation). While the factors of the path are conditioned, they are not suffering.
In MN 22 it describes how after reaching the further shore, the raft of the dhamma is abandoned.
MN 22 appears to be about not quarreling over the Dhamma. I suggest to read it in context. AN 6.2 says the Dhamma is never abandoned. In AN 6.2, it is said all Buddhas, past, present & future, honor/respect the Dhamma.
Past Buddhas,
future Buddhas,
& he who is the Buddha now,
removing the sorrow of many —

all have dwelt,
will dwell, he dwells,
revering the true Dhamma.
This, for Buddhas, is a natural law.

Therefore one who desires his own good,
aspiring for greatness,
should respect the true Dhamma,
recollecting the Buddhas' Teaching.

SN 6.2
:candle:
dealing with refining fabrications
SN 36.11 describes the refining of most fabrications as samadhi (jhana) rather than enligthenment. In enlightenment, wholesome sankhara are not clung to. A mind and life can never be free of sankhara. The definition of Nibbana in MN 26 includes the "calming of sankhara" (sabba-sankhara-samatho) rather than the "destruction of sankhara".
By using simple Buddhist logic
According to the Kalama Sutta, Pali Buddhism does not rely on logic. When a person is thirsty and then finds cool water, they do not concern themselves about whether the water is 100% pure. They just drink the cool water, similar to how the stream-enterer is described in SN 13.1 as having destroyed 99% of suffering.
How can a path ever cause nibbana which is causeless, as they say?
When the path is entered, all doubts like this will vanish. A stream-enterer has 0% doubt about the path & the core teachings.
it doesn't follow that the conditioned leads to the unconditioned.
The conditioned leads to the unconditioned, as the Pali suttas say.
isn't it more appropriate to forget about the other shore and be present to your own experience
The suttas say in many places the path is about getting rid of thoughts & ideas connected to "your own" ("I-making" & "my-making"). When the mind intentionally gives up, prevents & stops thoughts of "your own" & "my own", this intentional act is conditioned. This conditioned act results in a clear mind (samadhi), which can then see the truth. When the truth is seen, the defilements are cut. When defilements are cut, the unconditioned peace, which was always there but covered by defilements, is known or revealed. The suttas say the Truth & Nibbana is something "revealed" or "discovered" (rather than "conditioned" or "created").
And, no amount of will is going to end up 'on the other shore'.
According to the suttas, this view appears both wrong & to not believe in the Buddha-Dhamma. The suttas say "the will" is one of the four nutriments of life. Life cannot exist or function without nutriment (which are to be used with wisdom). The 2nd & 6th factors of the Noble Path particularly describe using "the will" for the purpose of "abandoning".
The whole picture needs an adjustment for your viewing pleasure.
If I want to watch a movie for pleasure, I must give up distractions & pay attention to the movie. Similarly, for the path to give rise to "vipassana" (clear seeing or clear viewing), an act of will is required to give up distractions; which can include giving up excessive/unbalanced willfulness. No act of will is required for seeing or viewing but an act of will is required to keep the mind free from the obstacles/hindrances to seeing/viewing. This is the path. The suttas say the path is a path of abandoning or giving up. This path of abandoning is conditioned & it leads to the unconditioned, exactly as the Lord Buddha shared compassionately & benevolently with those who have faith & trust in Him. :meditate:

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by Saengnapha » Sun Oct 15, 2017 6:38 am

DooDoot wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 5:43 am
Saengnapha wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 4:52 am
I have a hard time with this conception of a path, which you call conditioned (I agree) that you use to reach nibbana, which is not conditioned(supposedly).
I say there is no contradiction because what is conditioned is not necessarily suffering. The path is the gradual penetration & tasting of Nibbana, until arahantship. The enterer of the path both (simultaneously) uses the conditioned will (to abandon craving) & experiences Nibbana (liberation). While the factors of the path are conditioned, they are not suffering.
In MN 22 it describes how after reaching the further shore, the raft of the dhamma is abandoned.
MN 22 appears to be about not quarreling over the Dhamma. I suggest to read it in context. AN 6.2 says the Dhamma is never abandoned. In AN 6.2, it is said all Buddhas, past, present & future, honor/respect the Dhamma.
Past Buddhas,
future Buddhas,
& he who is the Buddha now,
removing the sorrow of many —

all have dwelt,
will dwell, he dwells,
revering the true Dhamma.
This, for Buddhas, is a natural law.

Therefore one who desires his own good,
aspiring for greatness,
should respect the true Dhamma,
recollecting the Buddhas' Teaching.

SN 6.2
:candle:
dealing with refining fabrications
SN 36.11 describes the refining of most fabrications as samadhi (jhana) rather than enligthenment. In enlightenment, wholesome sankhara are not clung to. A mind and life can never be free of sankhara. The definition of Nibbana in MN 26 includes the "calming of sankhara" (sabba-sankhara-samatho) rather than the "destruction of sankhara".
By using simple Buddhist logic
According to the Kalama Sutta, Pali Buddhism does not rely on logic. When a person is thirsty and then finds cool water, they do not concern themselves about whether the water is 100% pure. They just drink the cool water, similar to how the stream-enterer is described in SN 13.1 as having destroyed 99% of suffering.
How can a path ever cause nibbana which is causeless, as they say?
When the path is entered, all doubts like this will vanish. A stream-enterer has 0% doubt about the path & the core teachings.
it doesn't follow that the conditioned leads to the unconditioned.
The conditioned leads to the unconditioned, as the Pali suttas say.
isn't it more appropriate to forget about the other shore and be present to your own experience
The suttas say in many places the path is about getting rid of thoughts & ideas connected to "your own" ("I-making" & "my-making"). When the mind intentionally gives up, prevents & stops thoughts of "your own" & "my own", this intentional act is conditioned. This conditioned act results in a clear mind (samadhi), which can then see the truth. When the truth is seen, the defilements are cut. When defilements are cut, the unconditioned peace, which was always there but covered by defilements, is known or revealed. The suttas say the Truth & Nibbana is something "revealed" or "discovered" (rather than "conditioned" or "created").
And, no amount of will is going to end up 'on the other shore'.
According to the suttas, this view appears both wrong & to not believe in the Buddha-Dhamma. The suttas say "the will" is one of the four nutriments of life. Life cannot exist or function without nutriment (which are to be used with wisdom). The 2nd & 6th factors of the Noble Path particularly describe using "the will" for the purpose of "abandoning".
The whole picture needs an adjustment for your viewing pleasure.
If I want to watch a movie for pleasure, I must give up distractions & pay attention to the movie. Similarly, for the path to give rise to "vipassana" (clear seeing or clear viewing), an act of will is required to give up distractions; which can include giving up excessive/unbalanced willfulness. No act of will is required for seeing or viewing but an act of will is required to keep the mind free from the obstacles/hindrances to seeing/viewing. This is the path. The suttas say the path is a path of abandoning or giving up. This path of abandoning is conditioned & it leads to the unconditioned, exactly as the Lord Buddha shared compassionately & benevolently with those who have faith & trust in Him. :meditate:
Reading your responses, I can see why the Mahayana teachings became so popular and why they refute so many of your views. The gradual path is always about overcoming, purification, abandonment. It doesn't acknowledge everything as having the same Buddhanature from the beginning and bases its 'structure' around a time and space approach which always separates samsara and nibbana. This is why the Mahayana advanced schools like Zen and Dzogchen where conceptual thinking was allowed to dissolve effortlessly in their contemplative states, not to be pondered on endlessly. Sutra learning took a backseat to direct experience. To me, looking at the whole experience of Buddhism in the world is a fluid one, not one that is 2500 years of age and broken into sects arguing with one another. Being a scholar is one thing, being a practitioner is quite another.

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Re: the inter-relationship between different aspects of dharma, seeing it as a whole

Post by DooDoot » Sun Oct 15, 2017 8:38 am

Saengnapha wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 6:38 am
I can see why the Mahayana teachings became so popular
The Mahayana teachings are very broad, such as believing in deities or Bodhisattva, such as Green Tara, White Tara, Yellow Jumbhala, Avalokiteśvara, etc. Mahayana is the 'great' or 'broad' vehicle because it creates less lofty doctrines (such as 'non-duality' or 'non-conceptuality') that can appeal to a broader range of people. It is obvious the original teachings of the Buddha were not widely popular because the Dhammapada states: "Blind is the world; here only a few possess insight. Only a few, like birds escaping from the net, go to realms of bliss."
Saengnapha wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 6:38 am
and why they refute so many of your views.
This statement needs to be substantiated with evidence. However, this would form another topic. You are welcome to post actual Mahayana teachings (rather than make unsubstantiated comments) on another thread and we can have a discussion or debate. Madhyamaka was refuted previously. Sunnata is obviously not dependent origination as Madhyamaka claims because Nibbana is also sunnata but Nibbana is not dependent origination nor is Nibbana the same as samsara. Dhammapada 153 & 154; SN 22.99, etc, clearly state samsara is the opposite of Nibbana.
Saengnapha wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 6:38 am
It doesn't acknowledge everything as having the same Buddhanature
Did Genghis Khan & Joseph Stalin have Buddhanature? Many Pali suttas say unambiguously all beings do not have the capacity for awakening (MN 26; AN 10.95; Dhp 59 & 174). The Pali suttas appear to exclude the idea of universal Buddhanature.
Saengnapha wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 6:38 am
from the beginning and bases its 'structure' around a time and space approach which always separates samsara and nibbana.
Samsara & Nibbana are obviously different & opposite, as the Lord Buddha taught in many suttas (Dhp 153 & 154; SN 22.99; etc). A mind enslaved & tormented by craving, clinging & suffering is obviously different to a mind at total peace.
Saengnapha wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 6:38 am
This is why the Mahayana advanced schools like Zen and Dzogchen where conceptual thinking was allowed to dissolve effortlessly in their contemplative states, not to be pondered on endlessly.
This is not correct or true, according to the suttas (MN 111), which state even in the ekkaggata citta of jhana there is some intention. This intention exists because the mind does not reject the bliss of jhana but decides to abide in it. Regardlesss, conceptual thinking does not dissolve effortlessly without an act of will. Merely sitting in a meditation posture is an act of will. Letting the mind be quiet is an act of will. To believe there is no act of will is similar to when a Christian argues: "The devil made me do it". It is like when a sexual adulterer blames the other party. The mind can choose whether to allow the conceptual thoughts to dissolve or stop the dissolution of conceptual thought. This choice is an act of will; similar to the act of will when an adulterer allows another person to sexually seduce them. The person seduced by a sexual aggressor cannot say they had no will.
Saengnapha wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 6:38 am
Sutra learning took a backseat to direct experience.
Sutta is the direct experience of the Buddha and not of others who believe they practice a path without any will/intention. As I previously said, the mind accepting/choosing/non-rejecting the peace of meditation is an act of will.
Saengnapha wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 6:38 am
To me, looking at the whole experience of Buddhism in the world is a fluid one
.
This comment has no substance.
Saengnapha wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 6:38 am
not one that is 2500 years of age and broken into sects arguing with one another.
The core Pali suttas are not a sect nor are they broken. This is what this topic is about; the interrelationship or integrity of the core sutta teachings. The suttas have been preserved for 2500 years.
Saengnapha wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 6:38 am
Being a scholar is one thing, being a practitioner is quite another.
The core suttas are totally reflective of enlightened practise. According to the suttas, to reject the suttas is indicative of unenlightened practice. This is obvious. Enlightened practitioners are the Noble Sangha. Each member of the Noble Sangha has the same experience is the Lord Buddha & same experience as described in the suttas about enlightenment.
Past Buddhas,
future Buddhas,
& he who is the Buddha now (today),
removing the sorrow of many —

all have dwelt,
will dwell, he dwells,
revering the true Dhamma.
This, for Buddhas, is a natural law.

Therefore one who desires his own good,
aspiring for greatness,
should respect the true Dhamma,
recollecting the Buddhas' Teaching.

SN 6.2

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