Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism

Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

One life model
0
No votes
One life model and moment to moment
6
15%
Two lives model
0
No votes
Three lives model
3
8%
Three lives model and moment to moment
8
20%
Multiple lives model
3
8%
Multiple lives model & moment-to-moment
7
18%
Moment to moment only
2
5%
Timeless/Atemporal/Structural
7
18%
Simultaneous, non-linear
4
10%
 
Total votes: 40

Circle5
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Re: Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

Post by Circle5 » Mon Apr 16, 2018 10:41 pm

The DO sutta is just one out hundreds of suttas that constitute the "higher dhamma" section of the nikayas. It is pure ridiculousness to read one sutta out of 1500 pages of higher dhamma and expect to understand how living beings technically work based just on that random sutta.

Imagine a bunch of people who have read just 1 page out of an engineering manual that attempts to explain how airplaines work and then debate to death that one page, without reading the whole book. Have you ever done such a stupid act in collage ? Has any one of your collage classmates ever done such a stupid act ?

This is the problem that keeps popping up on buddhist forums. People reading just the first sutta of the higher dhamma section of the nikayas (chapter 2,3 and half of chapter 4 of SN) and trying to figure it all out just by using this single page out of 1500.

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Re: Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

Post by aflatun » Mon Apr 16, 2018 10:44 pm

Circle5 wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 10:41 pm
The DO sutta is just one out hundreds of suttas that constitute the "higher dhamma" section of the nikayas.
If you read past the titles you'll notice that the entire portion of the SN in question is actually about DO.
"People often get too quick to say 'there's no self. There's no self...no self...no self.' There is self, there is focal point, its not yours. That's what not self is."

Ninoslav Ñāṇamoli
Senses and the Thought-1, 42:53

"Those who create constructs about the Buddha,
Who is beyond construction and without exhaustion,
Are thereby damaged by their constructs;
They fail to see the Thus-Gone.

That which is the nature of the Thus-Gone
Is also the nature of this world.
There is no nature of the Thus-Gone.
There is no nature of the world."

Nagarjuna
MMK XXII.15-16

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Re: Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

Post by DNS » Mon Apr 16, 2018 10:54 pm

Circle5 wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 10:41 pm
This is the problem that keeps popping up on buddhist forums. People reading just the first sutta of the higher dhamma section of the nikayas (chapter 2,3 and half of chapter 4 of SN) and trying to figure it all out just by using this single page out of 1500.
Who is doing that? I don't see anyone quoting one Sutta or one page and saying they have it all figured out based on one Sutta. Where do you see this?

edit: unless you are referring to Zom's post on the first page? In which case, you should quote his post so it doesn't appear that you are scolding everyone here.

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Re: Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

Post by Circle5 » Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:05 pm

Who is doing that? I don't see anyone quoting one Sutta or one page and saying they have it all figured out based on one Sutta. Where do you see this?
There is so much focus on the DO sutta, when this sutta is just a page out of many of higher dhamma. Because people only read this sutta + the opinions of modern gurus about it, they end up with all kind of strange interpretations of it. For example claiming that "birth" or "aging and death" should be understood in a momentary sense. Just look at the number of people who voted for such a thing in this very topic. This shows they have not even read the second sutta out of the "Book of causation" chapter of SN where each link is explained and even has a string of synonims attached:
“And what, bhikkhus, is aging-and-death? The aging of the various beings in the various orders of beings, their growing old, brokenness of teeth, greyness of hair, wrinkling of skin, decline of vitality, degeneration of the faculties: this is called aging. The passing away of the various beings from the various orders of beings, their perishing, breakup, disappearance, mortality, death, completion of time, the breakup of the aggregates, the laying down of the carcass: this is called death.2 Thus this aging and this death are together called aging-and-death.

“And what, bhikkhus, is birth? The birth of the various beings into the various orders of beings, their being born, descent [into the womb], production, the manifestation of the aggregates, the obtaining of the sense bases. This is called birth.3
Besides this problem of not even reading the sutta following the first one, there is also the problem of this sutta being a super small part of the explanation regarding how a living being works. It's just one page out of 1500. Even if one understands this one, there are still 1499 pages to go.

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Re: Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

Post by retrofuturist » Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:38 pm

Greetings Circle5,
Circle5 wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:05 pm
Besides this problem of not even reading the sutta following the first one, there is also the problem of this sutta being a super small part of the explanation regarding how a living being works. It's just one page out of 1500. Even if one understands this one, there are still 1499 pages to go.
Paticcasamuppada means dependent origination or dependent arising.

What do you think it is that arises?
What do you think it is that the arisen is dependent upon?
Is the function of paticcasamuppada in the Dhamma to be a model for "how a living being works"?

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)

"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: Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

Post by pilgrim » Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:57 pm

DNS wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 7:12 pm

Buddhaghosa (Theravada) and Vasubandhu (Mahayana) both discussed a 3 life model. Either they both came up with the 3 life model on their own or extrapolated it from the teachings, thus the controversy ever since.

And the Abhidhamma discusses momentary mental events in detail, which makes sense from our own analysis of thoughts and their fleeting nature.
I believe the 3 Life Model is drawn from the 2nd authority which is Suttānuloma as inferred by the MahaNidana sutta, then Acariyavada, the opinions of Commentators. :anjali:

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Re: Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

Post by Circle5 » Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:58 pm

retrofuturist wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:38 pm
Greetings Circle5,
Circle5 wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:05 pm
Besides this problem of not even reading the sutta following the first one, there is also the problem of this sutta being a super small part of the explanation regarding how a living being works. It's just one page out of 1500. Even if one understands this one, there are still 1499 pages to go.
Paticcasamuppada means dependent origination or dependent arising.

What do you think it is that arises?
What do you think it is that the arisen is dependent upon?
Is the function of paticcasamuppada in the Dhamma to be a model for "how a living being works"?

Metta,
Paul. :)
Partly yes. It's meant to be a summary of how a living being works and how rebirth works. A summary of how this big mass of suffering keeps perpetuating itself. It partially explains how the aggregates work. It's not meant to be a complete explanation of how things work since it's just 1 page out of 1500 of higher dhamma. But many people treat it as such. In order to understand how things work, much more than a single sutta is needed.

As a matter of fact, the whole chapter where this sutta is found called "book of causation" will leave one in a big fog after reading it. It's main purpose is to make the person notice the conditionality between things. Only in the "book of aggregates" will one's head get cleared of fog and one will find a detailed explanation of how beings technically work.

When Buddha explained the highed dhamma to people, he always did it in a specific order. First he explained causation, then aggregates, then sense bases, etc. and only at the end did he explain the difficult teachings about no-self. This is the order in which he explained things to people in the suttas, people who then became stream enterers.

Today, we see people taking this DO sutta, spinning it in a billion ways (sometimes even inventing a new philosopy around it that totally contradicts buddhism), thinking this is the secret to understanding the dhamma, when this sutta is such a small piece of the puzzle that should not be taken out of context of the whole teaching.

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Re: Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

Post by SDC » Tue Apr 17, 2018 12:08 am

DNS wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 3:11 pm
mikenz66 wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 7:14 am
But that would mean that Thanissaro and Retro would tick the same box, which really doesn't make sense. Their views are quite distinct.
Okay, I updated the poll; so now we all need to re-vote to since updating the poll reset all numbers back to 0.
Dude! :x

Option 8: Timeless/Atemporal/Structural

David, I take the flagrant rejection of this model as a personal insult. :tongue:

For those unfamiliar with this model, see Ven.'s Nanavira, N. Nanamoli and Ariyavamsa. As I understand it, instead of attempting to explain a sequence - whether it be over the course of one, two or three lives, psychologically through "mind moments", or through some hybrid of the two - this model does not involve sequence at all. It does not explain any sort of process. Instead it describes the structure of suffering: the full arrangement of the different 'layers/factors' of that suffering, and how they, in pairs, depend on one another irrespective of time.
...Just as two sheaves of reeds might stand leaning against each other, so too, with name-and-form as condition, consciousness; with consciousness as condition, name-and-form. With name-and-form as condition, the six sense bases; with the six sense bases as condition, contact…. Such is the origin of this whole mass of suffering.

If, friend, one were to remove one of those sheaves of reeds, the other would fall, and if one were to remove the other sheaf, the first would fall. So too, with the cessation of name-and-form, the cessation of consciousness; with the cessation of consciousness, the cessation of name-and-form. With the cessation of name-and-form, the cessation of the six sense bases; with the cessation of the six sense bases, cessation of contact…. Such is the cessation of this whole mass of suffering.” -SN 12.67
With all the classic arguments in support of this timeless model aside, I think the most potent comes from one's own struggles to hold the entirety of experience together as a being a part of a process or sequence. Because no matter how accurate any process/sequential model of DO seems to be, all fail to take into account just how exactly one is supposed to observe sequence at all. If a direction of viewing a sequence is available, then the source of that direction cannot be part of the sequence being observed, i.e. a thing cannot simultaneously be occurring and watching itself occur. That direction will always be towards whatever is there and thus can never itself be observed. Models that involve sequence exclude this direction of view, but not purposefully - they are so utterly familiar with things be there that they never question that direction. This results in condoning the existence of something beyond the sequence (self) by assuming it to be sequential in an unwatchable, and negligible manner. Because no matter what one does when attempting to find a proper intersection of observation and process, it all gets muddled in an infinite regress. Every attempt to fold the whole thing together as part of a broader sequence, results in even that being subject to the same paradox of having that direction coming from outside that which has been designated as "the sequence"; it can literally go on without end, without ever reaching an intersection of observation and process.

The structural interpretation leaves all of this as it is, accepts the arisen, yet flawed logic involved, but rejects the prospect that any further meaning be drawn from the sequence. Since sequential/process models involve intentional motion from thing to thing in front of an observer, and call it time, they thrive on one's tendency to search. I posit that this sequential search is nothing but craving, and only when ventures down those sequential rabbit holes are abandoned, can a structural search emerge. One takes the flawed picture as it is and uses it to find what the flaw implies, not where it leads. Discerning the implication reveals what that picture is based upon, while following it does nothing but embed it further, since adherence to the movement is a major flaw in itself. I should probably shut up now...

That is why I reject all 7 options in David's pole. :computerproblem:

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Re: Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

Post by Zom » Tue Apr 17, 2018 12:14 am

That's how I understand it.
I don't know why all the fuss about it.
Because suttas never go into details, and people do want them -)
Gombrich makes the interesting observation (I'm not sure if it's true) that DO is unique in that there is an account of the Buddha saying that it is deep and extremely hard to understand. (This is to Ananda at the start of the Maha Nidana Sutta).
Actually, it is not hard to understand - and this is why Ananda did say that his phrase. However, Buddha gave a reply, meaning, that his understanding of it is not as profound as arahant's understanding, and indeed, there is a huge difference between stream-enterer and arahant's vision. Arahant is endowed with perfect full-fledged samadhi, seeing things in a mystic, "unthinkable" way (acinteyya). I guess this is what Buddha meant by that his reply to Ananda.
this model does not involve sequence at all. It does not explain any sort of process. Instead it describes the structure of suffering: the full arrangement of the different 'layers/factors' of that suffering, and how they, in pairs, depend on one another irrespective of time.
Ye. When beings cling, they continue to exist. When they exist, they are born again and again. And when they are born again and again, they suffer and die again and again .) And - (following Upanisa sutta), when they suffer and die so much, eventually they start to gain faith in Dhamma... and then they practise... and because of that they gain joy... etc etc etc... and finally enlightenment 8-) No need to apply "n-lives scheme" to explain anything here.
Last edited by Zom on Tue Apr 17, 2018 12:30 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

Post by Circle5 » Tue Apr 17, 2018 12:17 am

See ? This is what I'm speaking about...

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Re: Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

Post by SDC » Tue Apr 17, 2018 12:47 am

Circle5 wrote:
Tue Apr 17, 2018 12:17 am
See ? This is what I'm speaking about...
I had meant to dedicate my post to you in good fun. :D

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Re: Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

Post by cappuccino » Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:01 am

aflatun wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 10:03 pm
cappuccino wrote:
Mon Apr 16, 2018 9:59 pm
people over estimate the importance of DO
I believe you're underestimating it.
I underestimated how unimportant it is.

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Re: Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

Post by Dhammarakkhito » Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:26 am

seeingthroughthenet.net/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/The-Law-of-Dependent-Arising_LE_Rev_1.0.pdf
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"Just as the ocean has a single taste — that of salt — in the same way, this Dhamma-Vinaya has a single taste: that of release."
— Ud 5.5

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Re: Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

Post by cappuccino » Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:30 am

becoming a stream enterer is not about dependent arising

it's rather about seeing arising and ceasing

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Re: Which view on DO resonates with you the most?

Post by retrofuturist » Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:35 am

Greetings SDC,
SDC wrote:
Tue Apr 17, 2018 12:08 am
Option 8: Timeless/Atemporal/Structural
As per my response here, that's what I would have selected too.

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)

"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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