Trusting Precedence of Texts

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thang
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Trusting Precedence of Texts

Post by thang » Sat Sep 22, 2018 7:43 am

The generally accepted criteria for trusting precedence of teachings is as follows.

1. Sutta (suttas and vinaya)
2. Suttanuloma (facts in accordance with sutta and vinaya)
3. Acariyavada (old commentaries and teacher's tradition)
4. Attanomati (modern commentaries, views and our own view)

Modern days people seem to trust (4) than others.
They read (4) first and judge the Suttas and Old commentaries according to their own views.

If you catch the snake by the tail, then no one will be able to help you !

* Hint: Studying Pali is very helpful to directly access Suttas and Old Commentaries.
Last edited by thang on Sat Sep 22, 2018 8:30 am, edited 2 times in total.
"Bhikkhus, whatever the Tathāgata speaks, utters, or expounds
in the interval between
the night when he awakens to the unsurpassed perfect enlightenment
and the night when he attains final nibbāna,
all that is just so and not otherwise"
;

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JamesTheGiant
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Re: Trusting Precedence of Texts

Post by JamesTheGiant » Sat Sep 22, 2018 7:55 am

That's probably because the suttas are often obscure to new readers, in difficult language, dreadfully repetitive, and expensive to access in a paper book.

But modern commentaries, what you call Attanomati, are written in modern language that we can easily grasp, the issues examined are more precisely directed at current issues and concerns, they're often free, and they are not repetitive. They're designed for readability, not for chanting and transmission in an oral tradition.

I try to read 10 pages per day of suttas, and I'm on my second time through the nikayas, but I must admit it's more fun reading modern dhamma books.

But yes, the suttas are the primary thing, and should be the main source.

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Sam Vara
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Re: Trusting Precedence of Texts

Post by Sam Vara » Sat Sep 22, 2018 8:03 am

Even if we read the suttas direct, we inevitably filter the meaning through the views we have. Most practitioners, especially in the West, acquired their views a long time before they acquired copies of the suttas, so it's hard to set views aside. Rather than seeing four sources of teaching which can be separately accessed as per the OP, I think there are bits of all four floating around in the minds of most those who practice.

thang
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Re: Trusting Precedence of Texts

Post by thang » Sat Sep 22, 2018 8:15 am

JamesTheGiant wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 7:55 am
That's probably because the suttas are often obscure to new readers, in difficult language, dreadfully repetitive, and expensive to access in a paper book.
This is the point where we need effort.
JamesTheGiant wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 7:55 am
But modern commentaries, what you call Attanomati, are written in modern language that we can easily grasp, the issues examined are more precisely directed at current issues and concerns, they're often free, and they are not repetitive. They're designed for readability, not for chanting and transmission in an oral tradition.
Obviously those advantages are there, but we have to be very careful about their views. Many modern scholars interpret the meaning based on their views and cherry pick suttas and commentaries to prove their views.
JamesTheGiant wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 7:55 am
but I must admit it's more fun reading modern dhamma books.
If we have not read suttas, modern writers easily catch and seduce us into their views.
JamesTheGiant wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 7:55 am
But yes, the suttas are the primary thing, and should be the main source.
Must be. We should first validate whether modern books are in compliance with the suttas. Many are not.
"Bhikkhus, whatever the Tathāgata speaks, utters, or expounds
in the interval between
the night when he awakens to the unsurpassed perfect enlightenment
and the night when he attains final nibbāna,
all that is just so and not otherwise"
;

binocular
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Re: Trusting Precedence of Texts

Post by binocular » Sat Sep 22, 2018 8:57 am

thang wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 7:43 am
The generally accepted criteria for trusting precedence of teachings is as follows.

1. Sutta (suttas and vinaya)
2. Suttanuloma (facts in accordance with sutta and vinaya)
3. Acariyavada (old commentaries and teacher's tradition)
4. Attanomati (modern commentaries, views and our own view)

Modern days people seem to trust (4) than others.
They read (4) first and judge the Suttas and Old commentaries according to their own views.

If you catch the snake by the tail, then no one will be able to help you !
I started out with the suttas. And look where that got me.
Every person we save is one less zombie to fight. -- World War Z

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DooDoot
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Re: Trusting Precedence of Texts

Post by DooDoot » Sat Sep 22, 2018 9:33 am

It does not matter if we read the suttas because we may not understand what we read. I think it is best to always keep the basic Dhamma refuge in mind, namely, sanditthiko akaliko ehipassiko opanayiko paccattam vedittabbo vinnuhiti. Studying sutta for any purpose, apart from here-&-now liberation, I think you catch the snake by the tail.
But there are here, O monks, some noble sons who study the Teaching; and having studied it, they examine wisely the purpose of those teachings. To those who wisely examine the purpose, these teachings will yield insight. They do not study the Teaching for the sake of criticizing nor for refuting others in disputation. They experience the purpose for which they study the Teaching; and to them these teachings being rightly grasped, will bring welfare and happiness for a long time. And why? Because of their right grasp of the teachings.

Alagaddupama Sutta: The Snake Simile

binocular
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Re: Trusting Precedence of Texts

Post by binocular » Sat Sep 22, 2018 9:49 am

DooDoot wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 9:33 am
Studying sutta for any purpose, apart from here-&-now liberation,
That's what I did.
I think you catch the snake by the tail.
And that's how it turned out. But maybe the snake by which I was bitten wasn't the Dhamma after all ... although the bite is still festering.
Every person we save is one less zombie to fight. -- World War Z

thang
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Re: Trusting Precedence of Texts

Post by thang » Sat Sep 22, 2018 9:54 am

DooDoot wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 9:33 am
I think it is best to always keep the basic Dhamma refuge in mind, namely, sanditthiko akaliko ehipassiko opanayiko paccattam vedittabbo vinnuhiti.
Dhamma is mainly the Buddha Vacana, though someone can't read and understand. When someone needs to clarify something, he should have to consider trusting precedence.
DooDoot wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 9:33 am
Studying sutta for any purpose, apart from here-&-now liberation, I think you catch the snake by the tail.
When you studying for here-&-now liberation, it is not good to grasp modern views over Buddha Vacana.
"Bhikkhus, whatever the Tathāgata speaks, utters, or expounds
in the interval between
the night when he awakens to the unsurpassed perfect enlightenment
and the night when he attains final nibbāna,
all that is just so and not otherwise"
;

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DooDoot
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Re: Trusting Precedence of Texts

Post by DooDoot » Sat Sep 22, 2018 10:00 am

thang wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 9:54 am
Dhamma is mainly the Buddha Vacana
If the above was true, why are there warnings in the suttas about false teachings & disappearance of teachings? In reality, the only way to know if something is truly Buddha Vacana is by verification by liberation. This is the 2nd Refuge of sanditthiko akaliko ehipassiko opanayiko paccattam vedittabbo vinnuhiti.
thang wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 9:54 am
When you studying for here-&-now liberation, it is not good to grasp modern views over Buddha Vacana.
The term "modern views" means nothing. You appear to not even know what "nama" means yet you wish to lecture others about liberation.

thang
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Re: Trusting Precedence of Texts

Post by thang » Sat Sep 22, 2018 10:13 am

DooDoot wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 10:00 am
thang wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 9:54 am
Dhamma is mainly the Buddha Vacana
If the above was true, why are the warnings in the suttas about false teachings?
Warnings are there for thinking before someone grasp later additions and modern criticisms.
DooDoot wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 9:33 am
In reality, the only way to know if something is truly Buddha Vacana is by verification by liberation.
Liberation can't verify anything. It should be corrected as "veryfication by wisdom".
DooDoot wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 9:33 am
thang wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 9:54 am
When you studying for here-&-now liberation, it is not good to grasp modern views over Buddha Vacana.
The term "modern views" means nothing.
If someone has already grasped modern views, he will not be able to see any meaning.
"Bhikkhus, whatever the Tathāgata speaks, utters, or expounds
in the interval between
the night when he awakens to the unsurpassed perfect enlightenment
and the night when he attains final nibbāna,
all that is just so and not otherwise"
;

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DooDoot
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Re: Trusting Precedence of Texts

Post by DooDoot » Sat Sep 22, 2018 10:20 am

thang wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 10:13 am
Liberation can't verify anything. It should be corrected as "veryfication by wisdom".
Anything that is true Dhamma must result in liberation. The Buddha said: "As the great ocean has one taste, the taste of salt; the Dhamma has one taste; the taste of liberation/freedom". The taste of Dhamma is liberation. Ajahn Chah taught often about this.
So this holy life, bhikkhus, does not have gain, honour, and renown for its benefit, or the attainment of virtue for its benefit, or the attainment of concentration for its benefit, or knowledge and vision for its benefit. But it is this unshakeable deliverance of mind that is the goal of this holy life, its heartwood, and its end.”

MN 29
(6) “Just as the great ocean has but one taste, the taste of salt, so too, this Dhamma and discipline has but one taste, the taste of liberation. This is the sixth astounding and amazing quality that the bhikkhus see in this Dhamma and discipline…

https://suttacentral.net/an8.19/en/bodhi
:smile:
thang wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 9:54 am
If someone has already grasped modern views, he will not be able to see any meaning.
I already said this above idea means nothing. It is meaningless. First you must define exactly what the term "modern views" means. :smile:
thang wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 10:13 am
If someone has already grasped modern views, he will not be able to see any meaning.
The old Thai monk Ajahn Chah taught what most Buddhists believe are "modern views". :smile:
Ajahn Chah wrote:Now, how do we know that it's a bhava? It's a bhava (sphere of existence) because of our clinging to the idea that those trees are our own, that that orchard is our own. If someone were to take an ax and cut one of the trees down, the owner over there in the house ''dies'' along with the tree. He gets furious, and has to go and set things right, to fight and maybe even kill over it. That quarreling is the ''birth.'' The ''sphere of birth'' is the orchard of trees that we cling to as our own. We are ''born'' right at the point where we consider them to be our own, born from that bhava. Even if we had a thousand apple trees, if someone were to cut down just one it'd be like cutting the owner down.

http://www.ajahnchah.org/book/Flood_Sensuality1.php

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salayatananirodha
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Re: Trusting Precedence of Texts

Post by salayatananirodha » Sun Sep 23, 2018 1:01 am

if suttas are well translated they are immensely beneficial and you can observe that directly. You could even be completely new and hear one line and attain stream entry or at least take refuge. Or you could hear a verse as a worldling and it ruminate in your mind and you find the path. This still happens today, even tho you dont have the song-bird like voice of the buddha. Its unfortunate that later texts are upheld over the suttas, but a lot of it has to do with poor translation
http://obo.genaud.net/dhamma-vinaya/pts/an/05_fives/an05.156.hare.pts.htm wrote:'Monks, these five things
lead to the stability,
non-confounding,
to the non-disappearance of Saddhamma.

What five?[ed1]

Herein, monks, the monks master a well-grasped saying,
well-arranged as to word and letter;
monks, when it is so well-arranged,
the meaning also is a good deduction.

This, monks, is the first thing
that leads to the stability,
non-confounding,
to the non-disappearance of Saddhamma....
16. 'In what has the world originated?' — so said the Yakkha Hemavata, — 'with what is the world intimate? by what is the world afflicted, after having grasped at what?' (167)

17. 'In six the world has originated, O Hemavata,' — so said Bhagavat, — 'with six it is intimate, by six the world is afflicted, after having grasped at six.' (168)

- Hemavatasutta


links:
https://www.ancient-buddhist-texts.net/index.htm
http://thaiforestwisdom.org/canonical-texts/
http://seeingthroughthenet.net/
https://www.dhammatalks.org/index.html

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salayatananirodha
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Re: Trusting Precedence of Texts

Post by salayatananirodha » Sun Sep 23, 2018 1:06 am

The Buddha said we would do well to memorize what he said, and repetition leads to remembering. Hearing the same teaching a second time can lead to attainment whereas hearing it once doesn't. The benefits of any text anyway are going to be less without developing mindfulness thru jhana meditation, observing precepts, moderation in eating, chaste conduct, etc
16. 'In what has the world originated?' — so said the Yakkha Hemavata, — 'with what is the world intimate? by what is the world afflicted, after having grasped at what?' (167)

17. 'In six the world has originated, O Hemavata,' — so said Bhagavat, — 'with six it is intimate, by six the world is afflicted, after having grasped at six.' (168)

- Hemavatasutta


links:
https://www.ancient-buddhist-texts.net/index.htm
http://thaiforestwisdom.org/canonical-texts/
http://seeingthroughthenet.net/
https://www.dhammatalks.org/index.html

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