Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism

Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Yes
17
57%
No
13
43%
 
Total votes: 30

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Wizard in the Forest
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Re: Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Post by Wizard in the Forest » Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:39 am

This is twice that people have mentioned Bible Thumping in this subject. We aren't Christians. We're Buddhists. I get you might have an unfavorable background with Christianity and their fundamentalism but this is like comparing apples and a canary. Our confidence and faith in the Buddha grows with experience. This kind of faith is to be respected. It's because of this that people DO believe the Buddha is infallible in his words to those Disciples who DID become Arahants.
"One is not born a woman, but becomes one."- Simone de Beauvoir

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Re: Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Post by dylanj » Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:39 am

Ruud wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:35 am
I think the interesting question related to the OP would be whether the Buddha (for as much as we know him through our 'fallible' scriptures) would want us to take him as infallible. Based on for example the Kalama Sutta, I believe the answer to that is no. We can learn extremely much from the Buddha, but in the end it comes down to our confidence/faith that eventually leads to the 'knowing for oneself' that turns hearsay into experienced truth. So as long as our seeing him as infallible helps our confidence, great, but always in a spirit of investigation what is being said. If not you are not careful, infallibility can very easily leads to biblethumping
"For a disciple who has conviction in the Teacher's message & lives to penetrate it, what accords with the Dhamma is this: 'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I.'

Majjhima Nikāya 70
"From the night the Tathāgata fully awakens to the unsurpassed Right Self-awakening to the night he is perfectly extinguished in the extinction element with no fuel remaining, whatever the Tathāgata has said, spoken, explained is just so and not otherwise. Thus he is called the Tathāgata.

Itivuttaka 4.13
"Monks, whatever in the cosmos — with its devas, Maras, & Brahmas, its generations with their contemplatives & brahmans royalty & common people — is seen, heard, sensed, cognized, attained, sought after, pondered by the intellect: That do I know. Whatever in the cosmos — with its devas, Maras, & Brahmas, its generations with their contemplatives & brahmans, their royalty & common people — is seen, heard, sensed, cognized, attained, sought after, pondered by the intellect: That I directly know. That has been realized by the Tathagata, but in the Tathagata it has not been established."

AN 4.24
"There are, bhikkhus, other dhammas, deep, difficult to see, difficult to understand, peaceful and sublime, beyond the sphere of reasoning, subtle, comprehensible only to the wise, which the Tathāgata, having realized for himself with direct knowledge, propounds to others; and it is concerning these that those who would rightly praise the Tathāgata in accordance with reality would speak.

DN 1
[1] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be unfactual, untrue, unbeneficial (or: not connected with the goal), unendearing & disagreeable to others, he does not say them.

[2] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, unbeneficial, unendearing & disagreeable to others, he does not say them.

[3] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, beneficial, but unendearing & disagreeable to others, he has a sense of the proper time for saying them.

[4] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be unfactual, untrue, unbeneficial, but endearing & agreeable to others, he does not say them.

[5] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, unbeneficial, but endearing & agreeable to others, he does not say them.

[6] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, beneficial, and endearing & agreeable to others, he has a sense of the proper time for saying them. Why is that? Because the Tathagata has sympathy for living beings."

— MN 58
susukhaṁ vata nibbānaṁ,
sammā­sambud­dha­desitaṁ;
asokaṁ virajaṁ khemaṁ,
yattha dukkhaṁ nirujjhatī


Oh! extinction is so very blissful,
As taught by the One Rightly Self-Awakened:
Sorrowless, stainless, secure;
Where suffering all ceases


etaṁ santaṁ etaṁ paṇītaṁ yadidaṁ sabbasaṅkhārasamatho sabbūpadhipaṭi nissaggo taṇhakkhayo virāgo nirodho nibbānaṁ

This is peaceful, this is excellent, that is: the stilling of all preparations, the relinquishment of all attachments, the destruction of craving, detachment, cessation, extinction.

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Mr Man
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Re: Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Post by Mr Man » Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:42 am

SarathW wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:28 am
The only way to test the infallibility of the Buddha's word is to practice his teaching.
That's right. The Buddha taught so that we could be like Kondañña not so we could believe in the infallibility of every word.

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Re: Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Post by Mr Man » Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:54 am

Ruud wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:35 am
I think the interesting question related to the OP would be whether the Buddha (for as much as we know him through our 'fallible' scriptures) would want us to take him as infallible. Based on for example the Kalama Sutta, I believe the answer to that is no. We can learn extremely much from the Buddha, but in the end it comes down to our confidence/faith that eventually leads to the 'knowing for oneself' that turns hearsay into experienced truth. So as long as our seeing him as infallible helps our confidence, great, but always in a spirit of investigation what is being said. If not you are not careful, infallibility can very easily leads to biblethumping
:goodpost:

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Re: Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Post by dylanj » Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:58 am

Mr Man wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:54 am
Ruud wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:35 am
I think the interesting question related to the OP would be whether the Buddha (for as much as we know him through our 'fallible' scriptures) would want us to take him as infallible. Based on for example the Kalama Sutta, I believe the answer to that is no. We can learn extremely much from the Buddha, but in the end it comes down to our confidence/faith that eventually leads to the 'knowing for oneself' that turns hearsay into experienced truth. So as long as our seeing him as infallible helps our confidence, great, but always in a spirit of investigation what is being said. If not you are not careful, infallibility can very easily leads to biblethumping
:goodpost:
"For a disciple who has conviction in the Teacher's message & lives to penetrate it, what accords with the Dhamma is this: 'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I.'

Majjhima Nikāya 70
"From the night the Tathāgata fully awakens to the unsurpassed Right Self-awakening to the night he is perfectly extinguished in the extinction element with no fuel remaining, whatever the Tathāgata has said, spoken, explained is just so and not otherwise. Thus he is called the Tathāgata.

Itivuttaka 4.13
"Monks, whatever in the cosmos — with its devas, Maras, & Brahmas, its generations with their contemplatives & brahmans royalty & common people — is seen, heard, sensed, cognized, attained, sought after, pondered by the intellect: That do I know. Whatever in the cosmos — with its devas, Maras, & Brahmas, its generations with their contemplatives & brahmans, their royalty & common people — is seen, heard, sensed, cognized, attained, sought after, pondered by the intellect: That I directly know. That has been realized by the Tathagata, but in the Tathagata it has not been established."

AN 4.24
"There are, bhikkhus, other dhammas, deep, difficult to see, difficult to understand, peaceful and sublime, beyond the sphere of reasoning, subtle, comprehensible only to the wise, which the Tathāgata, having realized for himself with direct knowledge, propounds to others; and it is concerning these that those who would rightly praise the Tathāgata in accordance with reality would speak.

DN 1
[1] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be unfactual, untrue, unbeneficial (or: not connected with the goal), unendearing & disagreeable to others, he does not say them.

[2] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, unbeneficial, unendearing & disagreeable to others, he does not say them.

[3] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, beneficial, but unendearing & disagreeable to others, he has a sense of the proper time for saying them.

[4] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be unfactual, untrue, unbeneficial, but endearing & agreeable to others, he does not say them.

[5] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, unbeneficial, but endearing & agreeable to others, he does not say them.

[6] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, beneficial, and endearing & agreeable to others, he has a sense of the proper time for saying them. Why is that? Because the Tathagata has sympathy for living beings."

— MN 58
susukhaṁ vata nibbānaṁ,
sammā­sambud­dha­desitaṁ;
asokaṁ virajaṁ khemaṁ,
yattha dukkhaṁ nirujjhatī


Oh! extinction is so very blissful,
As taught by the One Rightly Self-Awakened:
Sorrowless, stainless, secure;
Where suffering all ceases


etaṁ santaṁ etaṁ paṇītaṁ yadidaṁ sabbasaṅkhārasamatho sabbūpadhipaṭi nissaggo taṇhakkhayo virāgo nirodho nibbānaṁ

This is peaceful, this is excellent, that is: the stilling of all preparations, the relinquishment of all attachments, the destruction of craving, detachment, cessation, extinction.

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Re: Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Post by Ruud » Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:00 am

Wizard in the Forest wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:39 am
This is twice that people have mentioned Bible Thumping in this subject. We aren't Christians. We're Buddhists. I get you might have an unfavorable background with Christianity and their fundamentalism but this is like comparing apples and a canary. Our confidence and faith in the Buddha grows with experience. This kind of faith is to be respected. It's because of this that people DO believe the Buddha is infallible in his words to those Disciples who DID become Arahants.
I do not disagree with you at all. I was trying to express something similar but apparently did a bad job. What I tried to say is that having confidence in the infalibility of the Buddha is good and very useful, I just wanted to point out that that has to be balanced with a healthy dose of investigation and practical engagement. Otherwise the confidence is at risk of becoming blind faith, which does nothing.

I do not have a history with christianity or anything. I, possibly inappropriately, used the biblethumping expression to indicate the kind of blind faith I was pointing at. I did not mean any harm by it.
Dry up what pertains to the past,
do not take up anything to come later.
If you will not grasp in the middle,
you will live at peace.
—Snp.5.11,v.1099 (tr. Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhi)

Whatever is will be was. —Ven. Ñānamoli, A Thinkers Notebook, §221

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Re: Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Post by dylanj » Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:02 am

It's definitely true that such faith & confidence should be based on personal investigation.
susukhaṁ vata nibbānaṁ,
sammā­sambud­dha­desitaṁ;
asokaṁ virajaṁ khemaṁ,
yattha dukkhaṁ nirujjhatī


Oh! extinction is so very blissful,
As taught by the One Rightly Self-Awakened:
Sorrowless, stainless, secure;
Where suffering all ceases


etaṁ santaṁ etaṁ paṇītaṁ yadidaṁ sabbasaṅkhārasamatho sabbūpadhipaṭi nissaggo taṇhakkhayo virāgo nirodho nibbānaṁ

This is peaceful, this is excellent, that is: the stilling of all preparations, the relinquishment of all attachments, the destruction of craving, detachment, cessation, extinction.

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Mr Man
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Re: Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Post by Mr Man » Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:06 am

dylanj wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:58 am
Mr Man wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:54 am
Ruud wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:35 am
I think the interesting question related to the OP would be whether the Buddha (for as much as we know him through our 'fallible' scriptures) would want us to take him as infallible. Based on for example the Kalama Sutta, I believe the answer to that is no. We can learn extremely much from the Buddha, but in the end it comes down to our confidence/faith that eventually leads to the 'knowing for oneself' that turns hearsay into experienced truth. So as long as our seeing him as infallible helps our confidence, great, but always in a spirit of investigation what is being said. If not you are not careful, infallibility can very easily leads to biblethumping
:goodpost:
"For a disciple who has conviction in the Teacher's message & lives to penetrate it, what accords with the Dhamma is this: 'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I.'

Majjhima Nikāya 70
"From the night the Tathāgata fully awakens to the unsurpassed Right Self-awakening to the night he is perfectly extinguished in the extinction element with no fuel remaining, whatever the Tathāgata has said, spoken, explained is just so and not otherwise. Thus he is called the Tathāgata.

Itivuttaka 4.13
"Monks, whatever in the cosmos — with its devas, Maras, & Brahmas, its generations with their contemplatives & brahmans royalty & common people — is seen, heard, sensed, cognized, attained, sought after, pondered by the intellect: That do I know. Whatever in the cosmos — with its devas, Maras, & Brahmas, its generations with their contemplatives & brahmans, their royalty & common people — is seen, heard, sensed, cognized, attained, sought after, pondered by the intellect: That I directly know. That has been realized by the Tathagata, but in the Tathagata it has not been established."

AN 4.24
"There are, bhikkhus, other dhammas, deep, difficult to see, difficult to understand, peaceful and sublime, beyond the sphere of reasoning, subtle, comprehensible only to the wise, which the Tathāgata, having realized for himself with direct knowledge, propounds to others; and it is concerning these that those who would rightly praise the Tathāgata in accordance with reality would speak.

DN 1
[1] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be unfactual, untrue, unbeneficial (or: not connected with the goal), unendearing & disagreeable to others, he does not say them.

[2] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, unbeneficial, unendearing & disagreeable to others, he does not say them.

[3] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, beneficial, but unendearing & disagreeable to others, he has a sense of the proper time for saying them.

[4] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be unfactual, untrue, unbeneficial, but endearing & agreeable to others, he does not say them.

[5] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, unbeneficial, but endearing & agreeable to others, he does not say them.

[6] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, beneficial, and endearing & agreeable to others, he has a sense of the proper time for saying them. Why is that? Because the Tathagata has sympathy for living beings."

— MN 58
What are you trying to do? Why not be like Kondañña?
Last edited by retrofuturist on Fri Jun 22, 2018 9:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Ad-hominem attack removed

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Re: Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Post by dylanj » Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:09 am

Mr Man wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:06 am
What are you trying to do? Why not be like Kondañña?
I am trying to be like Kondañña.
"Go forth, o bhikkhus, for the good of the many, for the happiness of the many, out of compassion for the world, for the benefit, for the good, for the happiness of gods and men. Let not two go by one way. Preach the doctrine that is beautiful in its beginning, beautiful in its middle, and beautiful in its ending. Declare the holy life in its purity, completely both in the spirit and the letter." ~ Mahavagga, Vinaya Pitaka.
Why don't you address the relevance of the quotes I provided to your belief that the Buddha suggested we should not view him as infallible?
susukhaṁ vata nibbānaṁ,
sammā­sambud­dha­desitaṁ;
asokaṁ virajaṁ khemaṁ,
yattha dukkhaṁ nirujjhatī


Oh! extinction is so very blissful,
As taught by the One Rightly Self-Awakened:
Sorrowless, stainless, secure;
Where suffering all ceases


etaṁ santaṁ etaṁ paṇītaṁ yadidaṁ sabbasaṅkhārasamatho sabbūpadhipaṭi nissaggo taṇhakkhayo virāgo nirodho nibbānaṁ

This is peaceful, this is excellent, that is: the stilling of all preparations, the relinquishment of all attachments, the destruction of craving, detachment, cessation, extinction.

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Re: Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Post by Mr Man » Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:13 am

dylanj wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:09 am
Mr Man wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:06 am
Yes biblethumping. You are a Buddhist biblethumper :smile: What are you trying to do? Why not be like Kondañña?
I am trying to be like Kondañña.
"Go forth, o bhikkhus, for the good of the many, for the happiness of the many, out of compassion for the world, for the benefit, for the good, for the happiness of gods and men. Let not two go by one way. Preach the doctrine that is beautiful in its beginning, beautiful in its middle, and beautiful in its ending. Declare the holy life in its purity, completely both in the spirit and the letter." ~ Mahavagga, Vinaya Pitaka.
Why don't you address the relevance of the quotes I provided to your belief that the Buddha suggested we should not view him as infallible?
Perhaps you could do one quote at a time and explain how dylanj feels the quote is relevant to the comment. I don't think dylanj actually addressed the comment.

Oh and it is not my belief that the Buddha suggested we should not view him as infallible.

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Re: Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Post by dylanj » Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:18 am

Mr Man wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:13 am
dylanj wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:09 am
Mr Man wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:06 am
What are you trying to do? Why not be like Kondañña?
I am trying to be like Kondañña.
"Go forth, o bhikkhus, for the good of the many, for the happiness of the many, out of compassion for the world, for the benefit, for the good, for the happiness of gods and men. Let not two go by one way. Preach the doctrine that is beautiful in its beginning, beautiful in its middle, and beautiful in its ending. Declare the holy life in its purity, completely both in the spirit and the letter." ~ Mahavagga, Vinaya Pitaka.
Why don't you address the relevance of the quotes I provided to your belief that the Buddha suggested we should not view him as infallible?
Perhaps you could do one quote at a time and explain how dylanj feels the quote is relevant to the comment. I don't think dylanj actually addressed the comment.
Each of the quotes involve the Buddha declaring his infallibility and/or the value of his followers believing in his infallibility.
susukhaṁ vata nibbānaṁ,
sammā­sambud­dha­desitaṁ;
asokaṁ virajaṁ khemaṁ,
yattha dukkhaṁ nirujjhatī


Oh! extinction is so very blissful,
As taught by the One Rightly Self-Awakened:
Sorrowless, stainless, secure;
Where suffering all ceases


etaṁ santaṁ etaṁ paṇītaṁ yadidaṁ sabbasaṅkhārasamatho sabbūpadhipaṭi nissaggo taṇhakkhayo virāgo nirodho nibbānaṁ

This is peaceful, this is excellent, that is: the stilling of all preparations, the relinquishment of all attachments, the destruction of craving, detachment, cessation, extinction.

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Re: Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Post by dylanj » Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:18 am

There is actually nothing in the Kalama Sutta suggesting one should be skeptical of the Buddha. This is a misinterpretation, often based on mistranslations.
susukhaṁ vata nibbānaṁ,
sammā­sambud­dha­desitaṁ;
asokaṁ virajaṁ khemaṁ,
yattha dukkhaṁ nirujjhatī


Oh! extinction is so very blissful,
As taught by the One Rightly Self-Awakened:
Sorrowless, stainless, secure;
Where suffering all ceases


etaṁ santaṁ etaṁ paṇītaṁ yadidaṁ sabbasaṅkhārasamatho sabbūpadhipaṭi nissaggo taṇhakkhayo virāgo nirodho nibbānaṁ

This is peaceful, this is excellent, that is: the stilling of all preparations, the relinquishment of all attachments, the destruction of craving, detachment, cessation, extinction.

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Re: Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Post by Dinsdale » Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:23 am

JamesTheGiant wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 6:40 am
Yes, BUT the suttas have been changed, edited, recompiled, retconned, deleted, added, invented, and mucked around with many many times. So it's all dodgy. You just have to use your common sense, and a bit of critical analysis.
Yes, and see whether the methods of practice described lead to something worthwhile.
Buddha save me from new-agers!

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Re: Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Post by Saengnapha » Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:31 am

Dinsdale wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:23 am
JamesTheGiant wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 6:40 am
Yes, BUT the suttas have been changed, edited, recompiled, retconned, deleted, added, invented, and mucked around with many many times. So it's all dodgy. You just have to use your common sense, and a bit of critical analysis.
Yes, and see whether the methods of practice described lead to something worthwhile.
What can it lead to other than more of the same? Thought structure is never going to lead to something other than itself! This is an illusion. This is part of the dream of existence. The methods of practice are part of the 'dodgy'. So is common sense and critical analysis. This is very difficult to come to terms with.

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Re: Do you believe in the infallibility of the Buddha's word?

Post by Ruud » Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:41 am

dylanj wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:39 am
Ruud wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:35 am
I think the interesting question related to the OP would be whether the Buddha (for as much as we know him through our 'fallible' scriptures) would want us to take him as infallible. Based on for example the Kalama Sutta, I believe the answer to that is no. We can learn extremely much from the Buddha, but in the end it comes down to our confidence/faith that eventually leads to the 'knowing for oneself' that turns hearsay into experienced truth. So as long as our seeing him as infallible helps our confidence, great, but always in a spirit of investigation what is being said. If not you are not careful, infallibility can very easily leads to biblethumping
"For a disciple who has conviction in the Teacher's message & lives to penetrate it, what accords with the Dhamma is this: 'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I.'

Majjhima Nikāya 70
"From the night the Tathāgata fully awakens to the unsurpassed Right Self-awakening to the night he is perfectly extinguished in the extinction element with no fuel remaining, whatever the Tathāgata has said, spoken, explained is just so and not otherwise. Thus he is called the Tathāgata.

Itivuttaka 4.13
"Monks, whatever in the cosmos — with its devas, Maras, & Brahmas, its generations with their contemplatives & brahmans royalty & common people — is seen, heard, sensed, cognized, attained, sought after, pondered by the intellect: That do I know. Whatever in the cosmos — with its devas, Maras, & Brahmas, its generations with their contemplatives & brahmans, their royalty & common people — is seen, heard, sensed, cognized, attained, sought after, pondered by the intellect: That I directly know. That has been realized by the Tathagata, but in the Tathagata it has not been established."

AN 4.24
"There are, bhikkhus, other dhammas, deep, difficult to see, difficult to understand, peaceful and sublime, beyond the sphere of reasoning, subtle, comprehensible only to the wise, which the Tathāgata, having realized for himself with direct knowledge, propounds to others; and it is concerning these that those who would rightly praise the Tathāgata in accordance with reality would speak.

DN 1
[1] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be unfactual, untrue, unbeneficial (or: not connected with the goal), unendearing & disagreeable to others, he does not say them.

[2] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, unbeneficial, unendearing & disagreeable to others, he does not say them.

[3] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, beneficial, but unendearing & disagreeable to others, he has a sense of the proper time for saying them.

[4] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be unfactual, untrue, unbeneficial, but endearing & agreeable to others, he does not say them.

[5] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, unbeneficial, but endearing & agreeable to others, he does not say them.

[6] "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, beneficial, and endearing & agreeable to others, he has a sense of the proper time for saying them. Why is that? Because the Tathagata has sympathy for living beings."

— MN 58
Again, I am not really talking about whether the Buddha was or wasn't infallible. I was pointing out that I think that the Buddha would not stimulate blind faith based on infallibility. Unbalanced believing in infallibility has a risk of becoming blind faith.

By the way, I feel your first quote actually makes my point if you quote it completely:
“Bhikkhus, for a faithful disciple who is intent on fathoming the Teacher’s Dispensation, it is natural that he conduct himself thus: ‘The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple; the Blessed One knows, I do not know.’ For a faithful disciple who is intent on fathoming the Teacher’s Dispensation, the Teacher’s Dispensation is nourishing and refreshing. For a faithful disciple who is intent on fathoming the Teacher’s Dispensation, it is natural that he conduct himself thus: ‘Willingly, let only my skin, sinews, and bones remain, and let the flesh and blood dry up on my body, but my energy shall not be relaxed so long as I have not attained what can be attained by manly strength, manly energy, and manly persistence.’ For a faithful disciple who is intent on fathoming the Teacher’s Dispensation, one of two fruits may be expected: either final knowledge here and now or, if there is a trace of clinging left, non-return.”
https://suttacentral.net/mn70/en/bodhi
So with confidence you actively intend and make a serious effort to personally fathom the teachings instead of just believing.
Dry up what pertains to the past,
do not take up anything to come later.
If you will not grasp in the middle,
you will live at peace.
—Snp.5.11,v.1099 (tr. Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhi)

Whatever is will be was. —Ven. Ñānamoli, A Thinkers Notebook, §221

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