An American Buddhist Tradition

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
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Kim OHara
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Re: An American Buddhist Tradition

Post by Kim OHara »

PeterB wrote:If the students think they have never experienced Dukkha then they do not understand Dukkha, and will continue to misunderstand Dukkha until they A) adopt in a formal way thiose practices prescribed by the Buddha for the realisation of the nature of Dukkha and B) internalised the meaning of Dukkha. Instead they will substite a series of poor translations...like "suffering"
Buddha Dhamma will never have mass appeal in the west. It will find those ready for it.
Hi, Peter,
I did warn you to read very carefully ... I said the majority of his/her dhamma students never experience 'dukkha', i.e.( bearing in mind the quotation marks) the students never hear the word 'dukkha'.
It was a bit naughty of me (and I'm a bit sorry) but I couldn't resist playing with language in a post about the traps of language; I figured your language skills were such that you would not only cope with it but enjoy it.
Never mind - would you like to try again? Putting my challenge plainly: I can't describe a transmission of Pali concepts to non=Pali speakers which does not involve, at some point, translating them into the local language. Can you?
:namaste:
Kim

PeterB
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Re: An American Buddhist Tradition

Post by PeterB »

As an interim, a transitional phase, it is likely to be essential that things are then translated ( probably inadequately ) into a modern european language as a step towards encouraging the internalisation of the Pali.

Hence " dukkha " rendered as "suffering ," as a rough hewed shaping of the concept...the more subtle meaning/s will come later.
If we stay at " sufferering" much will be lost.

You can "play" and be" naughty " as much as you like.

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Kim OHara
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Re: An American Buddhist Tradition

Post by Kim OHara »

PeterB wrote:As an interim, a transitional phase, it is likely to be essential that things are then translated ( probably inadequately ) into a modern european language as a step towards encouraging the internalisation of the Pali.

Hence " dukkha " rendered as "suffering ," as a rough hewed shaping of the concept...the more subtle meaning/s will come later.
If we stay at " sufferering" much will be lost.
So you favour my Option 1 initially, to be followed asap by Option 2?
Kim wrote:Option 1: 'Dukkha' is translated as 'suffering' by one who teaches in English and the majority of his/her dhamma students never experience 'dukkha'.
Option 2: 'Dukkha' is presented as a new word by the teacher, explained at length when it is introduced (there's your translation), and then used continually within the group. 'Dukkha', from that point onwards, functions as an English word (since it is a word used in conversations and books in English), and in fact it becomes a 'loan word' like 'espresso' and 'cafe' and 'verandah'. One could say that it has thereby been 'translated' (literally 'carried across'), albeit in a different way, into English.
Once we know we are in agreement here, we can get off this detour and rejoin the main track of the topic, knowing that the transmission of the dhamma must, as I said, be affected by translation into the new local language.
:namaste:
Kim

PeterB
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Re: An American Buddhist Tradition

Post by PeterB »

I have read your views Kim O Hara , you have read mine, whether they are in agreement is not particularly important.
:anjali:

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appicchato
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Re: An American Buddhist Tradition

Post by appicchato »

Ahhh, the internet... :popcorn:

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Kim OHara
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Re: An American Buddhist Tradition

Post by Kim OHara »

appicchato wrote:Ahhh, the internet... :popcorn:
Never mind, bhante, it's as impermanent as everything else ... perhaps more impermanent, actually :smile:
And I think we can get back to the topic now. Perhaps someone would like to pick up on Pannsikhara's point a few posts back: "Another major issue in my eyes is simply that of vocab, particularly of mental states, and states of non-usual consciousness. We've largely pathologized these in English, it seems."
:namaste:
Kim

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Kim OHara
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Re: An American Buddhist Tradition

Post by Kim OHara »

This lecture by Gombrich - http://www.ocbs.org/index.php?option=co ... Itemid=121 is relevant to this thread, I think.

Thanks to Pilgrim for starting a thread about it here http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=7091.
:namaste:
Kim

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