the great rebirth debate

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
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Spiny O'Norman
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Spiny O'Norman » Tue Dec 21, 2010 10:51 am

Alex123 wrote: It is my understanding that "to live is to suffer" and that "suffering is inseparable from existence".
I think there is support for that idea in the suttas, most obviously that birth, ageing and death are included in descriptions of dukkha - unless one interprets this to mean that it is the mental suffering associated with these events rather than the events themselves.

Spiny

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Spiny O'Norman
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Spiny O'Norman » Tue Dec 21, 2010 10:54 am

Alex123 wrote:Why do we need the Buddha if we are guaranteed parinibbāna at death?
Do the suttas actually support this idea of paranibbana as annihilation? I thought that "what happens to a Tathagata at death?" was one of the Buddha's unanswered questions?

Spiny

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Alex123
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Alex123 » Tue Dec 21, 2010 5:03 pm

Cloud wrote:from the teachings of Ajahn Chah:
Even the Buddha experienced these things, he experienced comfort and pain, but he recognized them as conditions in nature. He knew how to overcome these ordinary, natural feelings of comfort and pain through understanding their true nature. Because he understood this “natural suffering” those feelings didn’t upset him.
Both joy and sorrow, both pleasure and pain, are dukkha if we have not released the mind from all wrong view. Really these are the same thing (i.e. pleasure and pain); it is only through our delusions of permanence, stability and self that we make distinction and suffer.

But Cloud, in YOUR OWN post it says that "Even the Buddha experienced these things, he experienced comfort and pain,"

Pain is included into Dukkha.

With metta,

Alex
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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clw_uk
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by clw_uk » Tue Dec 21, 2010 5:06 pm

But Cloud, in YOUR OWN post it says that "Even the Buddha experienced these things, he experienced comfort and pain,"

Pain is included into Dukkha.

With metta,

Alex

Pain is a word we have to use when talking conventionally, like self


from my own exp. I can say I am feeling pain for sake of a label and yet not experience dukkha


metta :anjali:
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Alex123
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Alex123 » Tue Dec 21, 2010 5:07 pm

Spiny O'Norman wrote:
Alex123 wrote:Why do we need the Buddha if we are guaranteed parinibbāna at death?
Do the suttas actually support this idea of paranibbana as annihilation? I thought that "what happens to a Tathagata at death?" was one of the Buddha's unanswered questions?

Spiny

IMHO the suttas say this:

Nibbana is not annihilation of an existing Being. The problem in the question of "what happens to a Tathagata at death?" is the assumption that Tathagata is an existing being that is either survives eternally or is annihilated after death. When one posits a Self, one then can hold such positions as self survives death, or death is the end of the Self, or hold some agnostic position. The problem is the Self-View.

Parinibbana is complete ending of the 5 khandhas without anything remaining. It is not an annihilation because there is no One to be annihilated in the first place.
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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Alex123
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Alex123 » Tue Dec 21, 2010 5:09 pm

Hi CLW,

clw_uk wrote:
But Cloud, in YOUR OWN post it says that "Even the Buddha experienced these things, he experienced comfort and pain,"

Pain is included into Dukkha.

With metta,

Alex

Pain is a word we have to use when talking conventionally, like self

So if the Buddha was severely physically hurt, He didn't feel pain?


clw_uk wrote: from my own exp. I can say I am feeling pain for sake of a label and yet not experience dukkha
metta :anjali:
it is like tasting lots of salt and not finding it salty.


I am not aware that an Arahant is invulnerable to pain and physical discomfort.

Pain is included into Dukkha.

Thus Arhats/Buddha do feel Dukkha to some degree.
"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."

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tiltbillings
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by tiltbillings » Tue Dec 21, 2010 5:15 pm

Alex123 wrote: Thus Arhats/Buddha do feel Dukkha to some degree.
They feel pain, but is it dukkha - that is, is the sensation of pain tied up with the wanting, the grasping after, and not wanting, the pushing away, associated with the concept of a self? Or are they free of that? If they are not free of that, it is not much of an awakening.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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tiltbillings
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by tiltbillings » Tue Dec 21, 2010 5:18 pm

Alex123 wrote: Parinibbana is complete ending of the 5 khandhas without anything remaining. It is not an annihilation because there is no One to be annihilated in the first place.
Since a tathagata, even when actually present, is incomprehensible, it is inept to say of him – of the Uttermost Person, the Supernal Person, the Attainer of the Supernal – that after death the tathagata is, or is not, or both is and is not, or neither is nor is not SN III 118
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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clw_uk
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by clw_uk » Tue Dec 21, 2010 5:19 pm

Alex

So if the Buddha was severely physically hurt, He didn't feel pain?
I dont know I wasnt in his head


it is like tasting lots of salt and not finding it salty.
Pain is just a different sensation to pleasure, a label used to describe a different sensation. I know my self that it doesnt have to be dukkha

I am not aware that an Arahant is invulnerable to pain and physical discomfort.
So because your not aware, it must be false?
Pain is included into Dukkha.
Dukkha is summed up as clinging to the aggregates. Non-clinging to the aggregates = no dukkha

It follows that if there is no clinging, then pain is not dukkha. Pain is not pain if you will

You seem to ignore the last part of the first noble truth

Also the suttas where the Buddha states that when one is not adverse to a physical sensation, then there is no dukkha there
Thus Arhats/Buddha do feel Dukkha to some degree.
How could you possibly know that
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Anicca
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Anicca » Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:30 pm

SN 1.38 Sakalika Sutta: The Stone Sliver
Now at that time his foot had been pierced by a stone sliver. Excruciating were the bodily feelings that developed within him — painful, fierce, sharp, wracking, repellent, disagreeable — but he endured them mindful, alert, & unperturbed.
...
"What a naga is Gotama the contemplative! And like a naga, when bodily feelings have arisen — painful, fierce, sharp, wracking, repellent, disagreeable — he endures them mindful, alert, & unperturbed!"
...
"See a concentration well-developed, a mind well-released — neither pressed down nor forced back, nor with mental fabrication kept blocked or suppressed. Whoever would think that such a naga of a man, lion of a man, thoroughbred of a man, peerless bull of a man, strong burden-carrier of a man, such a tamed man should be violated: what else is that if not blindness?"
Seems that even under extreme pain he was not "violated" by dukha - he was "unperturbed".

metta

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clw_uk
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by clw_uk » Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:47 pm

The Ballad of Liberation from the Khandhas - Aj. Mun

Extract
"What gains total release from the five khandhas?"

"The heart, of course & the heart alone.
It doesn't grasp or get entangled.
No more poison of possessiveness,
no more delusion,
it stands alone.
No saññas can fool it into following along
behind them."

http://www.what-buddha-taught.net/Books ... andhas.htm" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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Cloud
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Cloud » Tue Dec 21, 2010 7:06 pm

This understanding of dukkha seems to be important, and until it came up in this forum I hadn't heard it mistaken.

Dukkha is not any thing of itself... dukkha is what arises when there is wrong view in combination with sight, sound, touch, smell, taste or thought. Dukkha is what arises to the unenlightened mind that sees itself as separate, craves for permanence, wants this or wants-not that, does not understand rightly the way of all dhammas as insubstantial and without self essence.

People equate dukkha with their sufferings; pain for instance. Maybe this is because of the English translation of dukkha as suffering mostly.

Dukkha is that unsatisfactoriness; frustration; stress; that which is difficult to bear. Even pleasurable things, when looked at correctly, are unsatisfactory. Pleasure arises only to fall and be replaced with Pain; that Pain arises and falls to be replaced with Pleasure. The Buddha, a Buddha, does not indulge in joy or pain; all are seen as the same, leading only to dukkha. Anicca-Dukkha-Anatta.

See Anicca-Dukkha-Anatta in all experiences, because they are all transient and bound with suffering if we take them to be other than no-self.

If one does not understand this dukkha, its cause, cessation and the way leading to its cessation, one remains bound. If this subject is one not comprehended, then it should not be passed by; it should be comprehended rightly, if one wishes to escape dukkha (of course).

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clw_uk
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by clw_uk » Tue Dec 21, 2010 7:08 pm

Cloud wrote:This understanding of dukkha seems to be important, and until it came up in this forum I hadn't heard it mistaken.

Dukkha is not any thing of itself... dukkha is what arises when there is wrong view in combination with sight, sound, touch, smell, taste or thought. Dukkha is what arises to the unenlightened mind that sees itself as separate, craves for permanence, wants this or wants-not that, does not understand rightly the way of all dhammas as insubstantial and without self essence.

People equate dukkha with their sufferings; pain for instance. Maybe this is because of the English translation of dukkha as suffering mostly.

Dukkha is that unsatisfactoriness; frustration; stress; that which is difficult to bear. Even pleasurable things, when looked at correctly, are unsatisfactory. Pleasure arises only to fall and be replaced with Pain; that Pain arises and falls to be replaced with Pleasure. The Buddha, a Buddha, does not indulge in joy or pain; all are seen as the same, leading only to dukkha. Anicca-Dukkha-Anatta.

See Anicca-Dukkha-Anatta in all experiences, because they are all transient and bound with suffering if we take them to be other than no-self.

If one does not understand this dukkha, its cause, cessation and the way leading to its cessation, one remains bound. If this subject is one not comprehended, then it should not be passed by; it should be comprehended rightly, if one wishes to escape dukkha (of course).


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kirk5a
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by kirk5a » Tue Dec 21, 2010 8:27 pm

As I understand the view being presented here, the senses are not dukkha, if not clung to.

How would this be explained, under that theory?

"And what is the noble truth of dukkha? 'The six internal sense media,' should be the reply. Which six? The medium of the eye... the ear... the nose... the tongue... the body... the intellect. This is called the noble truth of dukkha."
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/ptf/dham ... index.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230

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Cloud
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Re: the great rebirth debate

Post by Cloud » Tue Dec 21, 2010 8:34 pm

Incomplete. One can't understand with a simple definition; that is what we cling to, get stuck on. There's more to study that explains the Four Noble Truths and dukkha in more detail, and then practice is what truly gives the mind's eye a view of this truth. If you read more than you can bear on AccessToInsight, it should become much more clear; that's one very good place to study, but even better to study your own mind and its objects.

In other words, it's out of context.
Last edited by Cloud on Tue Dec 21, 2010 8:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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