Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

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zan
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Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

Post by zan » Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:11 pm

Did the Buddha ever state flatly that he had no grasping (lobha) and aversion (dosa) whatsoever? Or did he list the things that he no longer felt grasping or aversion for and it is implied or could be inferred that he still had grasping and aversion for other things that he didn't mention?

I've read that lobha and dosa are only the negative aspects of grasping and aversion. If that is the case, then is it stated or implied that the Buddha still had lobha and dosa but only positive types? Or did he uproot all lobha and dosa in totality; positive, negative, neutral or any other way it could be understood? Was he 100% free of all lobha and dosa? Did he have zero desire for anything whatsoever and zero aversion to anything whatsoever without any subtle meanings involved or complicated, nuanced interpretation; could such a statement be made or is it found in the suttas?

Please provide sutta references.
Never read anything I write as an accurate statement about anything whatsoever. Look to wiser ones than I. Look to wise texts. Look elsewhere. See my writings like word games, nothing more.

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Sam Vara
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Re: Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

Post by Sam Vara » Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:00 pm

“What do you think, prince? Is it not possible that a fever born of greed—physical or mental—might arise in that householder or householder’s son, burning him so he sleeps badly?” “Yes, sir.”

“The greed that burns that householder or householder’s son, making them sleep badly, has been cut off at the root by the Realized One, made like a palm stump, exterminated, and unable to arise in the future. That’s why I sleep well.

What do you think, prince? Is it not possible that a fever born of hate … or a fever born of delusion—physical or mental—might arise in that householder or householder’s son, burning him so he sleeps badly?” “Yes, sir.”

“The delusion that burns that householder or householder’s son, making them sleep badly, has been cut off at the root by the Realized One, made like a palm stump, exterminated, and unable to arise in the future. That’s why I sleep well.”
AN 3.35

https://suttacentral.net/an3.35/en/sujato

With regard to whether the Buddha had desire for anything (as opposed to specifically harmful things) there is this:
In this world—with its gods, Māras and Brahmās, this generation with its ascetics and brahmins, gods and humans—the Realized One is the undefeated, the champion, the universal seer, the wielder of power. That’s why he’s called the ‘Realized One’.

Directly knowing the whole world as it is,
and everything in it,
he is detached from the whole world,
disengaged from the whole world
.
https://suttacentral.net/an4.23/en/sujato

zan
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Re: Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

Post by zan » Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:16 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:00 pm
“What do you think, prince? Is it not possible that a fever born of greed—physical or mental—might arise in that householder or householder’s son, burning him so he sleeps badly?” “Yes, sir.”

“The greed that burns that householder or householder’s son, making them sleep badly, has been cut off at the root by the Realized One, made like a palm stump, exterminated, and unable to arise in the future. That’s why I sleep well.

What do you think, prince? Is it not possible that a fever born of hate … or a fever born of delusion—physical or mental—might arise in that householder or householder’s son, burning him so he sleeps badly?” “Yes, sir.”

“The delusion that burns that householder or householder’s son, making them sleep badly, has been cut off at the root by the Realized One, made like a palm stump, exterminated, and unable to arise in the future. That’s why I sleep well.”
AN 3.35

https://suttacentral.net/an3.35/en/sujato
Thank you! So does this mean he had no desires or aversions at all? Or just didn't have negative ones?

For example if he saw someone who needed instruction on how to suffer less would he desire to help them? Would he feel aversion toward their suffering or to the idea of not helping them?

Or was he totally free from grasping and aversion to the point that he would feel neither for this person and would help them for some other reason?
Never read anything I write as an accurate statement about anything whatsoever. Look to wiser ones than I. Look to wise texts. Look elsewhere. See my writings like word games, nothing more.

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Sam Vara
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Re: Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

Post by Sam Vara » Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:23 pm

zan wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:16 pm
Thank you! So does this mean he had no desires or aversions at all? Or just didn't have negative ones?

For example if he saw someone who needed instruction on how to suffer less would he desire to help them? Would he feel aversion toward their suffering or to the idea of not helping them?

Or was he totally free from grasping and aversion to the point that he would feel neither for this person and would help them for some other reason?
Have a look at the last bit of my post. Apologies: I was editing it to add that bit in but our posts crossed! It appears his desirelessness was universal.

Whether the motivating factor for helping suffering beings is called desire or something more elevated like "compassion" is perhaps just a matter of semantics, but there may be a real difference. I'm afraid that attempting to answer that is above my pay grade!

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Re: Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

Post by zan » Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:33 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:23 pm
zan wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:16 pm
Thank you! So does this mean he had no desires or aversions at all? Or just didn't have negative ones?

For example if he saw someone who needed instruction on how to suffer less would he desire to help them? Would he feel aversion toward their suffering or to the idea of not helping them?

Or was he totally free from grasping and aversion to the point that he would feel neither for this person and would help them for some other reason?
Have a look at the last bit of my post. Apologies: I was editing it to add that bit in but our posts crossed! It appears his desirelessness was universal.

Whether the motivating factor for helping suffering beings is called desire or something more elevated like "compassion" is perhaps just a matter of semantics, but there may be a real difference. I'm afraid that attempting to answer that is above my pay grade!
Fascinating thank you!
Never read anything I write as an accurate statement about anything whatsoever. Look to wiser ones than I. Look to wise texts. Look elsewhere. See my writings like word games, nothing more.

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Re: Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

Post by Polar Bear » Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:40 pm

He obviously retained a mild preference for drinking water, eating food, urinating and defecating, meditating, teaching as opposed to dying of dehydration, starvation, bladder or intestinal explosion, not meditating and not teaching.

The Jains for example would go all the way to total abandonment by practicing asceticism for many years, restricting their food intake until eventually they would stop drinking and eating all together and sit in one place until they died. The Buddha did not recommend this.

:anjali:
"I don't envision a single thing that, when developed & cultivated, leads to such great benefit as the mind. The mind, when developed & cultivated, leads to great benefit."

"I don't envision a single thing that, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about such suffering & stress as the mind. The mind, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about suffering & stress."

zan
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Re: Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

Post by zan » Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:28 pm

Polar Bear wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:40 pm
He obviously retained a mild preference for drinking water, eating food, urinating and defecating, meditating, teaching as opposed to dying of dehydration, starvation, bladder or intestinal explosion, not meditating and not teaching.

The Jains for example would go all the way to total abandonment by practicing asceticism for many years, restricting their food intake until eventually they would stop drinking and eating all together and sit in one place until they died. The Buddha did not recommend this.

:anjali:
Interesting points. How do the suttas reconcile this with the above statements? Perhaps it is implied that the function of a Buddha or arahant simply is to teach, eat, drink, etc. And that these things are wholly unconnected to desire/preference/like/want or aversion/dislike? Rather like a flame gives light but does not desire to allow a book to be read nor feel aversion for people not being able to see it's light.
Never read anything I write as an accurate statement about anything whatsoever. Look to wiser ones than I. Look to wise texts. Look elsewhere. See my writings like word games, nothing more.

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Re: Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

Post by paul » Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:38 pm

Without the skilful desire which is central to right effort and the ardency that is repeatedly mentioned in the Satipatthana sutta, it would be impossible to develop the path:
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html

zan
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Re: Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

Post by zan » Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:45 pm

paul wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:38 pm
Without the skilful desire which is central to right effort and the ardency that is repeatedly mentioned in the Satipatthana sutta, it would be impossible to develop the path:
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
Naturally, but what about after the path is fully realized? The above statements make it unequicovally clear that the Buddha had no desire or aversion and was wholly detached from the world. So after that, what reasoning is given to do the things in polar bear's post?

Again I believe it is just what Buddhas and arahants do. No desire or aversion, just a natural function like a candle gives light.

Saying he had desire, skillful or otherwise, contradicts the above sutta quotes.

However I'm curious as to where or how this is explained in the suttas.
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Re: Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

Post by retrofuturist » Wed Oct 03, 2018 12:35 am

Greetings Zan,
zan wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:45 pm
Saying he had desire, skillful or otherwise, contradicts the above sutta quotes.

However I'm curious as to where or how this is explained in the suttas.
Somewhere in the suttas there's a simile given about walking to the other side of the park, to demonstrate the difference between skilful and unskillful desire or intention.

I had a quick look, but can't find it. I'll take another look but if anyone knows the sutta in question do please feel free to share.

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: Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

Post by Polar Bear » Wed Oct 03, 2018 1:33 am

zan wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:28 pm

How do the suttas reconcile this with the above statements?
I’m not aware that they do. There are similar things too, like some suttas where the Buddha says he delights in seclusion and others where he says you shouldn’t delight in anything. I just chalk it up to language being a bit messy and that it’s okay to be a little loosely goosey when describing psychological states.
"I don't envision a single thing that, when developed & cultivated, leads to such great benefit as the mind. The mind, when developed & cultivated, leads to great benefit."

"I don't envision a single thing that, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about such suffering & stress as the mind. The mind, when undeveloped & uncultivated, brings about suffering & stress."

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Re: Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

Post by chownah » Wed Oct 03, 2018 2:33 am

zan wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:45 pm
paul wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:38 pm
Without the skilful desire which is central to right effort and the ardency that is repeatedly mentioned in the Satipatthana sutta, it would be impossible to develop the path:
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
Naturally, but what about after the path is fully realized? The above statements make it unequicovally clear that the Buddha had no desire or aversion and was wholly detached from the world.
When you refer to the "above statements" I assume that you are referring to:
“What do you think, prince? Is it not possible that a fever born of greed—physical or mental—might arise in that householder or householder’s son, burning him so he sleeps badly?” “Yes, sir.”

“The greed that burns that householder or householder’s son, making them sleep badly, has been cut off at the root by the Realized One, made like a palm stump, exterminated, and unable to arise in the future. That’s why I sleep well.

What do you think, prince? Is it not possible that a fever born of hate … or a fever born of delusion—physical or mental—might arise in that householder or householder’s son, burning him so he sleeps badly?” “Yes, sir.”

“The delusion that burns that householder or householder’s son, making them sleep badly, has been cut off at the root by the Realized One, made like a palm stump, exterminated, and unable to arise in the future. That’s why I sleep well.”

I think that a careful reading shows that this indicates that the buddha has cut off greed and cut off delusion......it does not seem to support your assertion that "the Buddha had no desire or aversion and was wholly detached from the world."

Perhaps more importantly, the buddha taught how WE as unawakened beings can enter onto the path towards awakening......he doesn't seem to say much about his condition which I think is an indication that it is not important for US to enter onto the path towards awakening (which I think is all that the buddha taught).
chownah

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Re: Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

Post by cappuccino » Wed Oct 03, 2018 2:41 am

you need a , somewhere

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Re: Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

Post by zan » Wed Oct 03, 2018 3:34 am

chownah wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 2:33 am
zan wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:45 pm
paul wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:38 pm
Without the skilful desire which is central to right effort and the ardency that is repeatedly mentioned in the Satipatthana sutta, it would be impossible to develop the path:
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
Naturally, but what about after the path is fully realized? The above statements make it unequicovally clear that the Buddha had no desire or aversion and was wholly detached from the world.
When you refer to the "above statements" I assume that you are referring to:
“What do you think, prince? Is it not possible that a fever born of greed—physical or mental—might arise in that householder or householder’s son, burning him so he sleeps badly?” “Yes, sir.”

“The greed that burns that householder or householder’s son, making them sleep badly, has been cut off at the root by the Realized One, made like a palm stump, exterminated, and unable to arise in the future. That’s why I sleep well.

What do you think, prince? Is it not possible that a fever born of hate … or a fever born of delusion—physical or mental—might arise in that householder or householder’s son, burning him so he sleeps badly?” “Yes, sir.”

“The delusion that burns that householder or householder’s son, making them sleep badly, has been cut off at the root by the Realized One, made like a palm stump, exterminated, and unable to arise in the future. That’s why I sleep well.”

I think that a careful reading shows that this indicates that the buddha has cut off greed and cut off delusion......it does not seem to support your assertion that "the Buddha had no desire or aversion and was wholly detached from the world."

Perhaps more importantly, the buddha taught how WE as unawakened beings can enter onto the path towards awakening......he doesn't seem to say much about his condition which I think is an indication that it is not important for US to enter onto the path towards awakening (which I think is all that the buddha taught).
chownah
That and when I asked if that maybe was pointing only to certain types of desire or aversion sam vera was already posting this:
In this world—with its gods, Māras and Brahmās, this generation with its ascetics and brahmins, gods and humans—the Realized One is the undefeated, the champion, the universal seer, the wielder of power. That’s why he’s called the ‘Realized One’.

Directly knowing the whole world as it is,
and everything in it,
he is detached from the whole world,
disengaged from the whole world
.
So that is not my assertion but rather is a flat, unambiguous statement: he is detached... disengaged from the whole world. I fail to see how someone could be disengaged and detached from the whole world but still have any desire or aversion whatsoever.

I think he was as perfect as these statements demand he be seen as: desireless and without aversion. There are doubtless many other suttas that speak of him in ways that make it extremely difficult or even impossible to argue that he had desires or aversions. And there are surely suttas that seem to imply that he did have desire and aversion.

However, it seems easier to find unambiguous statements about him having absolutely no desire or aversion than it is to find ones that are as unambiguous that state the opposite.

For example: "detached from the whole world"

Statements like this are common and varied in language enough that we can assume it was meant as such because it is said in many different ways with different words used.

You are unlikely to find "has great desire to help the whole world."

Or

"has deep aversion toward incorrect understanding of the Dhamma and beings suffering."

Or something similar.

The canon does not make firm, sweeping statements that clearly state such things about him having desire or aversion but does frequently go in the opposite direction.

I think a Perfect One does not have these qualities and helps people because it is simply the way they are.
Never read anything I write as an accurate statement about anything whatsoever. Look to wiser ones than I. Look to wise texts. Look elsewhere. See my writings like word games, nothing more.

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Re: Did the Buddha ever state flatly...

Post by zan » Wed Oct 03, 2018 3:44 am

retrofuturist wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 12:35 am
Greetings Zan,
zan wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:45 pm
Saying he had desire, skillful or otherwise, contradicts the above sutta quotes.

However I'm curious as to where or how this is explained in the suttas.
Somewhere in the suttas there's a simile given about walking to the other side of the park, to demonstrate the difference between skilful and unskillful desire or intention.

I had a quick look, but can't find it. I'll take another look but if anyone knows the sutta in question do please feel free to share.

Metta,
Paul. :)
Thank you. Is it as direct about the Buddha as the many firm statements that seem to clearly state that The Buddha had no desire whatsoever? Like does it specify that the Buddha specifically had skillful desire. If so, are there any suttas that clarify how he both had desire but also was detached and disengaged from the whole world?

I see no reason why he couldn't be totally free of desire and aversion and still teach others to use skillful desire to achieve enlightenment and become free from even skillful desire as well but I do not have enough knowledge of the suttas to be certain.

SN 51.15 has Ananda addressing this very problem: how does one get rid of desire using desire? A person thinks this is impossible but Ananda explains that once you reach the goal the desire that got you there is gone, having been fulfilled. This seems to imply, again, that once one reaches arahantship, they will no longer have desire, and, specifically, it implies that even skillful desire used to walk the path will cease.
Never read anything I write as an accurate statement about anything whatsoever. Look to wiser ones than I. Look to wise texts. Look elsewhere. See my writings like word games, nothing more.

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