Bahiya sutras - what's the significance?

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alfa
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Bahiya sutras - what's the significance?

Post by alfa »

:namaste:

When it's repeatedly said, 'With respect to the seen, there's only the seen etc.', what does this mean to you?

I mean your insight, experience. Is this just a teaching device used by the Buddha so you'd avoid the self, or is it much more?

Or does this point to nonduality?

Discuss. :anjali:

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JamesTheGiant
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Re: Bahiya sutras - what's the significance?

Post by JamesTheGiant »

alfa wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 2:45 am
... or is it much more?
It's an intimate description of the experience of what it's like when the self disappears.

There's only the seen, seeing happens but there's no further ramification of the experience. There's no clinging or aversion and the sense of self has no fuel, and so extinguishes.
The five aggregates you know, Form Feeling Perception Volition Consciousness.
When there is only the seen (etc), there is Form Feeling Perception, but that's where it stops. Volition is suspended and so breaks the cycle.
Practising to break that cycle at Volition/Sankhara is what we're doing with Vipassana/Satipatthana/Insight meditation.

SamKR
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Re: Bahiya sutras - what's the significance?

Post by SamKR »

alfa wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 2:45 am
:namaste:

When it's repeatedly said, 'With respect to the seen, there's only the seen etc.', what does this mean to you?

I mean your insight, experience. Is this just a teaching device used by the Buddha so you'd avoid the self, or is it much more?

Or does this point to nonduality?

Discuss. :anjali:
This points to nonduality (no trichotomy of knower-knowing-known) as well as to non-desire, non-effort/non-volition/non-self.

kalyanamitta
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Re: Bahiya sutras - what's the significance?

Post by kalyanamitta »

The Bāhiya Sutta from the Udāna showcases the overcoming of papañca, conceptual proliferation. In the absence of narrative overlay, one comes to see things as they are.
:buddha1: Buddhism, contemplative practice, philosophy: https://unityinplurality.blogspot.com/ :buddha1:

chownah
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Re: Bahiya sutras - what's the significance?

Post by chownah »

JamesTheGiant wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 3:04 am
When there is only the seen (etc), there is Form Feeling Perception, but that's where it stops. Volition is suspended and so breaks the cycle.
From: Madhupindika Sutta: The Ball of Honey:
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... html#fnt-1
Now, when there is no eye, when there are no forms, when there is no eye-consciousness, it is impossible that one will delineate a delineation of contact. When there is no delineation of contact, it is impossible that one will delineate a delineation of feeling. When there is no delineation of feeling, it is impossible that one will delineate a delineation of perception. When there is no delineation of perception, it is impossible that one will delineate a delineation of thinking. When there is no delineation of thinking, it is impossible that one will delineate a delineation of being assailed by the perceptions & categories of objectification.
If the part I made red is taken as the same as "when there is only the seen etc." then it appears that form, feeling, and perception do not arise as well as the other stuff.
chownah

chownah
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Re: Bahiya sutras - what's the significance?

Post by chownah »

kalyanamitta wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 3:24 am
The Bāhiya Sutta from the Udāna showcases the overcoming of papañca, conceptual proliferation. In the absence of narrative overlay, one comes to see things as they are.
:goodpost:
Thanks,
chownah

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JamesTheGiant
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Re: Bahiya sutras - what's the significance?

Post by JamesTheGiant »

chownah wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 4:00 am
If the part I made red is taken as the same as "when there is only the seen etc." then it appears that form, feeling, and perception do not arise as well as the other stuff.
Hmm, I don't think what you made red can be taken as "when there is only the seen etc."

When it says:
"when there is no eye, when there are no forms, when there is no eye-consciousness, it is impossible that one will delineate a delineation of contact..." that sounds more like saying when there's nothing to sense in the first place then there can be no progression of khandas.
It's a different thing.

chownah
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Re: Bahiya sutras - what's the significance?

Post by chownah »

JamesTheGiant wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 4:07 am
chownah wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 4:00 am
If the part I made red is taken as the same as "when there is only the seen etc." then it appears that form, feeling, and perception do not arise as well as the other stuff.
Hmm, I don't think what you made red can be taken as "when there is only the seen etc."

When it says:
"when there is no eye, when there are no forms, when there is no eye-consciousness, it is impossible that one will delineate a delineation of contact..." that sounds more like saying when there's nothing to sense in the first place then there can be no progression of khandas.
It's a different thing.
The sutta says "Then, Bāhiya, you should train yourself thus: In reference to the seen, there will be only the seen." It does not say with reference to the seen there is an eye, there are forms, there is eye consciouness. If there will be only the seen then something must be ruled out....something which one usually associates with seeing is being ruled out. If it is not the eye,forms, and eye consciousness then what is it?
chownah

SarathW
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Re: Bahiya sutras - what's the significance?

Post by SarathW »

JamesTheGiant wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 3:04 am
alfa wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 2:45 am
... or is it much more?
It's an intimate description of the experience of what it's like when the self disappears.

Agree.
That is how I see it too.

=======
then, Bāhiya, there is no you in connection with that. When there is no you in connection with that, there is no you there. When there is no you there, you are neither here nor yonder nor between the two. This, just this, is the end of stress."[2]

Through hearing this brief explanation of the Dhamma from the Blessed One, the mind of Bāhiya of the Bark-cloth right then and there was released from effluents through lack of clinging/sustenance.

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Bhikkhu Pesala
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Re: Bahiya sutras - what's the significance?

Post by Bhikkhu Pesala »

Not just quibbling. How can a non-existent thing like the self disappear? What one should say is, “When the illusion of self is penetrated.”

The same teaching is given to Mālukyaputta:

“Ettha ca te Mālukyaputta diṭṭha suta muta viññātesu dhammesu diṭṭhe diṭṭhamattaṃ bhavissati, sute sutamattaṃ bhavissati, mute muta­mattaṃ bhavis­sati, viññāte viññāta­mattaṃ bhavissati.”

“Mālukyaputta! As phenomena are seen, heard, thought of, or known, just let them be as they are seen, heard, thought of, or known at that moment. When you see, you just see it; when you hear, you just hear it; when you think, you just think it; and when you know, you just know it.”

Here it shows that defilements are denied any opportunity to arise when sense-objects cannot gain entry beyond the six sense-doors. The question then arises as to how to exert in repelling defilements when sense-objects do appear at the six sense-doors. Therefore the Buddha lays down the gist of the task of insight meditation in relation to the four modes of seeing, hearing, thinking, and knowing. Here we should note that the senses of smell, taste, and touch are included in the category of thought (muta) for the sake of brevity. Meditation on the three characteristics of impermanence, unsatisfactoriness, and not-self centres on these four modes of seeing, hearing, thinking, and knowing. These senses and sense-objects are not “I”, “Mine”, or “My self.” The objects just appear for a moment at the sense-doors and the meditator just sees or hears them for that moment, and nothing more. This is the essence of the insight meditation method.
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Bundokji
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Re: Bahiya sutras - what's the significance?

Post by Bundokji »

If you think that the Bahiya sutta is a description of how you should see things, then there is no significance that i can personally see. We have been doing that all the time.

In general, when we read the words of the wise, we ought to misunderstand him due to gaps in our knowledge. From the perspective of an unenlightened being reading the Bahiya sutta,/ means that what is left out is even more important than what it is in. When a well developed mind reads it, it contains all that is needed for liberation.

I don't remember which sutta was it, but a member of other sects was downplaying the significance of the Buddha's teachings by reducing it to "teaching only about suffering" in which the Buddha explained the huge amount of knowledge and abilities required that culminates in ending suffering, describing the member of the other sect as a fool.

Both over=simplifying and complicating are the ways of the world. I do feel that the Bahiya sutta can be misused to over-simplify the significance of the Buddha's teachings.

All in my opinion.
And the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus, saying: "Behold now, bhikkhus, I exhort you: All compounded things are subject to vanish. Strive with earnestness!"

This was the last word of the Tathagata.

SarathW
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Re: Bahiya sutras - what's the significance?

Post by SarathW »

Not just quibbling. How can a non-existent thing like the self disappear?
I think what James meant was "self-view dissapear" or "Self identification deasspear"
But I agree with your point.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”


chownah
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Re: Bahiya sutras - what's the significance?

Post by chownah »

dhammapal wrote:
Sun Oct 13, 2019 3:19 am
The Bahiya sutta isn't about raw bare attention, it's more wise than that. Read John D. Ireland's notes to Udana 1.10 (I don't have it handy right now).
I couldn't find his notes but I did find his translation and at the very end it has:
Then, on realizing its significance, the Lord uttered on that occasion this inspired utterance:


Where neither water nor yet earth
Nor fire nor air gain a foothold,
There gleam no stars, no sun sheds light,
There shines no moon, yet there no darkness reigns.

When a sage, a brahman, has come to know this
For himself through his own wisdom,
Then he is freed from form and formless.
Freed from pleasure and from pain.
What does this mean?....and especially what does this mean with respect to "for you in the seen is merely what is seen....etc."? Notice that it says "for you" (for bahiya himself I guess).

One clear possibility is that if one can focus precisely on phenomena and phenomena alone then the constructed fabrications of water, earth, fire, air,stars, sun, moon, and darkness will not arise and then the first paragraph of the utterance would apply. Perhaps there are other explanations.
chownah

pegembara
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Re: Bahiya sutras - what's the significance?

Post by pegembara »

JamesTheGiant wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 3:04 am
alfa wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 2:45 am
... or is it much more?
It's an intimate description of the experience of what it's like when the self disappears.

There's only the seen, seeing happens but there's no further ramification of the experience. There's no clinging or aversion and the sense of self has no fuel, and so extinguishes.
“When the illusion of self is penetrated.”

Pure objectivity of phenomenon arising and passing without the subjective feeling of "I am". Sabbe sankhara anicca/dukkha, sabbe dhamma anatta.
"When, Bahiya, for you in the seen is merely what is seen... in the cognized is merely what is cognized, then, Bahiya, you will not be 'with that.' When, Bahiya, you are not 'with that,' then, Bahiya, you will not be 'in that.' When, Bahiya, you are not 'in that,' then, Bahiya, you will be neither here nor beyond nor in between the two
"In the same way, friends, it's not that I say 'I am form,' nor do I say 'I am other than form.' It's not that I say, 'I am feeling... perception... fabrications... consciousness,' nor do I say, 'I am something other than consciousness.' With regard to these five clinging-aggregates, 'I am' has not been overcome, although I don't assume that 'I am this.'

"Friends, even though a noble disciple has abandoned the five lower fetters, he still has with regard to the five clinging-aggregates a lingering residual 'I am' conceit, an 'I am' desire, an 'I am' obsession. But at a later time he keeps focusing on the phenomena of arising & passing away with regard to the five clinging-aggregates: 'Such is form, such its origin, such its disappearance. Such is feeling... Such is perception... Such are fabrications... Such is consciousness, such its origin, such its disappearance.' As he keeps focusing on the arising & passing away of these five clinging-aggregates, the lingering residual 'I am' conceit, 'I am' desire, 'I am' obsession is fully obliterated.

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
Truly seeing things as they are - pure objectivity.
“For one whose conceit is abandoned,
whose knot of conceit is dispersed,
no knots exist
at all.

He, beyond any concept, wise,
would say, ‘I speak’;
would say, ‘They speak to me.’

Skilful,
knowing harmonious gnosis
with regard to the world,

he uses expressions
just as expressions.”

https://www.dhammatalks.org/suttas/SN/SN1_25.html
"A monk who is a Worthy One, devoid of mental fermentations — who has attained completion, finished the task, laid down the burden, attained the true goal, destroyed the fetters of becoming, and is released through right knowledge — directly knows earth as earth. Directly knowing earth as earth, he does not conceive things about earth, does not conceive things in earth, does not conceive things coming out of earth, does not conceive earth as 'mine,' does not delight in earth. Why is that? Because he has comprehended it, I tell you.

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, & from idle chatter: This is called right speech.

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