A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths - what can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
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kirk5a
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Re: A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Post by kirk5a » Thu Apr 04, 2013 1:08 pm

taintless wrote:Well this is really interesting, as far as I see there are two issues:

1) The possibility that we and/or I have misunderstood what the state of an Arahat is.

AND

2) Whether or not these criticisms can really be levied against the Hardcore Dharma movement adherents.

Number 2 is possible for me because I spent a large amount of time following the community at the Dharma Overground, and I noticed that kind of behavior that I mention. Number 1 however means something different, if it is truly the case that we and/or I are misinterpreting what it means to be an Arahat, then the rest of the criticisms may be pointless. Not invalid but pointless, merely because they really are making progress along the path.
For an Arahant, there is no arising of greed, hatred, delusion. Period. Done. There is no uncertainty about that.
"Seeing thus, the instructed disciple of the noble ones grows disenchanted with form, disenchanted with feeling, disenchanted with perception, disenchanted with fabrications, disenchanted with consciousness. Disenchanted, he becomes dispassionate. Through dispassion, he is fully released. With full release, there is the knowledge, 'Fully released.' He discerns that 'Birth is ended, the holy life fulfilled, the task done. There is nothing further for this world.'

"This, monks, is called a monk whose cross-bar is thrown off, [10] whose moat is filled in, whose pillar is pulled out, whose bolt is withdrawn, a noble one with banner lowered, burden placed down, unfettered.

"And how is a monk one whose cross-bar is thrown off? There is the case where a monk's ignorance is abandoned, its root destroyed, made like a palmyra stump, deprived of the conditions of development, not destined for future arising. This is how a monk is one whose cross-bar is thrown off.

"And how is a monk one whose moat is filled in? There is the case where a monk's wandering-on to birth, leading on to further-becoming, is abandoned, its root destroyed, made like a palmyra stump, deprived of the conditions of development, not destined for future arising. This is how a monk is one whose moat is filled in.

"And how is a monk one whose pillar is pulled out? There is the case where a monk's craving is abandoned, its root destroyed, made like a palmyra stump, deprived of the conditions of development, not destined for future arising. This is how a monk is one whose pillar is pulled out.

"And how is a monk one whose bolt is withdrawn? There is the case where a monk's five lower fetters are abandoned, their root destroyed, made like a palmyra stump, deprived of the conditions of development, not destined for future arising. This is how a monk is one whose bolt is withdrawn.

"And how is a monk a noble one with banner lowered, burden placed down, unfettered? There is the case where a monk's conceit 'I am' is abandoned, its root destroyed, made like a palmyra stump, deprived of the conditions of development, not destined for future arising. This is how a monk is a noble one with banner lowered, burden placed down, unfettered.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
"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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Re: A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Post by Dinsdale » Thu Apr 04, 2013 1:45 pm

kirk5a wrote:Since all that is felt is included within dukkha, clearly the dukkha referred to there which has been ended is mental dukkha, the second arrow. Parinibbana is the end of the first arrow.
"Bhikkhus, there are these two Nibbana-elements. What are the two? The Nibbana-element with residue left and the Nibbana-element with no residue left.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .irel.html
And yet the description of the Nibbana-element with no residue seems also to apply here and now, in this life:

"Now what, bhikkhus, is the Nibbana-element with no residue left? Here a bhikkhu is an arahant... completely released through final knowledge. For him, here in this very life, all that is experienced, not being delighted in, will be extinguished. That, bhikkhus, is called the Nibbana-element with no residue left."

I'm still not clear about whether the 1st arrow ( physical pain ) is dukkha for a Buddha.
Buddha save me from new-agers!

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kirk5a
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Re: A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Post by kirk5a » Thu Apr 04, 2013 2:44 pm

porpoise wrote:
And yet the description of the Nibbana-element with no residue seems also to apply here and now, in this life:

"Now what, bhikkhus, is the Nibbana-element with no residue left? Here a bhikkhu is an arahant... completely released through final knowledge. For him, here in this very life, all that is experienced, not being delighted in, will be extinguished. That, bhikkhus, is called the Nibbana-element with no residue left."

I'm still not clear about whether the 1st arrow ( physical pain ) is dukkha for a Buddha.
all that is experienced, not being delighted in, will be extinguished
Future tense.
Ven. Thanissaro translation of the verses that follow:
These two proclaimed
by the one with vision,
Unbinding properties the one independent,
the one who is Such:[3]
one property, here in this life
with fuel remaining
from the destruction
of the guide to becoming,
and that with no fuel remaining,
after this life,
in which all becoming
totally ceases.
"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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daverupa
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Re: A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Post by daverupa » Thu Apr 04, 2013 3:40 pm

porpoise wrote:I'm still not clear about whether the 1st arrow ( physical pain ) is dukkha for a Buddha.
SN 1.38 & SN 4.13 discuss this.
I have heard that on one occasion the Blessed One was staying near Rajagaha at the Maddakucchi Deer Reserve. 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.
"Unperturbed" seems to be the key term here.
  • "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.

- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]

Nyana
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Re: A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Post by Nyana » Thu Apr 04, 2013 7:08 pm

Alex123 wrote:
Ñāṇa wrote:
Alex123 wrote:It does sounds like Buddha was angry at Devadatta.
Do you not think it's possible to rebuke, reprove, reprimand, censure, criticize, or admonish someone without being angry?
It seems to me that there has to be certain degree of disliking of a wrong behavior in order to say something like he did to Devadatta.
Does disliking or denouncing wrong behavior require the presence of anger?

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Alex123
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Re: A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Post by Alex123 » Thu Apr 04, 2013 7:55 pm

Ñāṇa wrote:Does disliking or denouncing wrong behavior require the presence of anger?
I believe that dislike is anger, although to a much smaller 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..."

Nyana
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Re: A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Post by Nyana » Thu Apr 04, 2013 8:06 pm

Alex123 wrote:
Ñāṇa wrote:Does disliking or denouncing wrong behavior require the presence of anger?
I believe that dislike is anger, although to a much smaller degree.
I don't share your belief.

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Alex123
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Re: A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Post by Alex123 » Thu Apr 04, 2013 8:08 pm

Ñāṇa wrote:
Alex123 wrote:
Ñāṇa wrote:Does disliking or denouncing wrong behavior require the presence of anger?
I believe that dislike is anger, although to a much smaller degree.
I don't share your belief.
Dislike and anger both push away or reject something.

We can agree to disagree.
"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..."

lojong1
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Re: A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Post by lojong1 » Thu Apr 04, 2013 8:21 pm

Then there is knowledge of cause and effect.

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Polar Bear
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Re: A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Post by Polar Bear » Thu Apr 04, 2013 8:22 pm

Maybe it's not so much that the buddha personally dislikes bad actions but that he understands where they lead and so makes it very clear to others that certain actions are extremely detrimental to the person doing them out of compassion to that person and out of compassion to those who might follow suit in doing bad actions if the buddha doesn't put his foot down and let people know that they are terribly non-conducive to living the holy life and lead to one's long term harm and suffering. Sometimes people only understand a stern reaction and so the buddha gives one even though in his mind he is unperturbed, calm, neither liking nor disliking the way it is, at peace, cooled. Or perhaps you're just wrong Alex.
"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."

Nyana
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Re: A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Post by Nyana » Thu Apr 04, 2013 8:53 pm

Alex123 wrote:Dislike and anger both push away or reject something.
There are a number of Buddhist practices which include developing revulsion toward things that induce craving and clinging. E.g. the list of perceptions described in AN 7.46 (AN 7.49 in NDB). If developing dislike and revulsion in this way required developing anger, then these practices would be unskillful and never result in liberation.

lojong1
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Re: A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Post by lojong1 » Thu Apr 04, 2013 10:19 pm

Then there is the Unnabha paradox.

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Alex123
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Re: A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Post by Alex123 » Thu Apr 04, 2013 10:33 pm

Ñāṇa wrote:
Alex123 wrote:Dislike and anger both push away or reject something.
There are a number of Buddhist practices which include developing revulsion toward things that induce craving and clinging. E.g. the list of perceptions described in AN 7.46 (AN 7.49 in NDB). If developing dislike and revulsion in this way required developing anger, then these practices would be unskillful and never result in liberation.
Maybe revulsion to counteract craving is equal in force to craving so that net result is zero.

Example: Lets say that craving is 5 units of force to the left. If one develops 5 units of force to the right (anger) then the net result is zero.

Or to put it in another way: -5 + 5 = 0
"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..."

Nyana
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Re: A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Post by Nyana » Thu Apr 04, 2013 10:53 pm

lojong1 wrote:Then there is the Unnabha paradox.
If you're referring to SN 51.15, it's hardly a paradox. Rather, it's a matter of differentiating between what is skillful and what is unskillful. Chanda (desire) in the context of developing the noble path is skillful.

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Re: A Critique of the Hardcore Dharma Movement.

Post by Nyana » Thu Apr 04, 2013 10:59 pm

Alex123 wrote:Maybe revulsion to counteract craving is equal in force to craving so that net result is zero.

Example: Lets say that craving is 5 units of force to the left. If one develops 5 units of force to the right (anger) then the net result is zero.
I think you'd be hard-pressed to find any recommendations for developing anger or aggression as a practice or as part of the path in the Nikāyas. Anger is regarded as unskillful, and unskillful mental qualities don't lead to liberation. For example, the well known verse from Dhammapada 1.5:
  • Hatred never ends through hatred.
    By non-hate alone does it end.
    This is an ancient truth.

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