Can Enlightenment Be A Ruse?

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
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manas
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Re: Can Enlightenment Be A Ruse?

Post by manas » Thu Jun 26, 2014 1:36 am

No_Mind wrote: Everyone in this Forum wants Nirvana. It is a want no doubt about it.
Hi nomind,

feel free to voice your misunderstandings in the hope that they will get clarified, but please don't speak for me, or anyone else here, about what they 'want'. We can speak for ourselves.

manas
Knowing this body is like a clay jar,
securing this mind like a fort,
attack Mara with the spear of discernment,
then guard what's won without settling there,
without laying claim.

- Dhp 40

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No_Mind
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Re: Can Enlightenment Be A Ruse?

Post by No_Mind » Thu Jun 26, 2014 1:40 am

manas wrote:
No_Mind wrote: Everyone in this Forum wants Nirvana. It is a want no doubt about it.
Hi nomind,

feel free to voice your misunderstandings in the hope that they will get clarified, but please don't speak for me, or anyone else here, about what they 'want'. We can speak for ourselves.

manas
I apologize Manas. I thought all Buddhists want to be enlightened. I stand corrected. Not everyone in this Forum wants Enlightenment.

Am I correct in assuming all here are Buddhists or should I change that assumptions also?

:anjali:
I know one thing: that I know nothing

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manas
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Re: Can Enlightenment Be A Ruse?

Post by manas » Thu Jun 26, 2014 2:44 am

No_Mind wrote:
I apologize Manas. I thought all Buddhists want to be enlightened. I stand corrected. Not everyone in this Forum wants Enlightenment.

Am I correct in assuming all here are Buddhists or should I change that assumptions also?

:anjali:
No worries. Personally, i would be very happy with stream entry in this lifetime, but as for the cessation of craving altogether, I am not currently aspiring for that. Just to let you know, in this tradition stream entry is regarded as a stage of enlightenment, so to be specific, yes i am seeking enlightenment, just not Nirvana at present.

kind regards
manas
Knowing this body is like a clay jar,
securing this mind like a fort,
attack Mara with the spear of discernment,
then guard what's won without settling there,
without laying claim.

- Dhp 40

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No_Mind
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Re: Can Enlightenment Be A Ruse?

Post by No_Mind » Thu Jun 26, 2014 3:30 am

manas wrote: yes i am seeking enlightenment, just not Nirvana at present.
Many think enlightenment and Nirvana are one and same http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=1818

I just use them colloquially to mean the same thing. No clue if they are the same. I would after all term them a red herring.
I know one thing: that I know nothing

LXNDR
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Re: Can Enlightenment Be A Ruse?

Post by LXNDR » Thu Jun 26, 2014 4:50 am

SarathW wrote:
LXNDR wrote:quotation corrected

i modified my statement a bit, but the import hasn't changed much, that if there's any inconsistency or confusing tenet in a teaching, it's not the teacher who is at fault but the students who just don't understand, and this way you can explain any nonsense any teacher might feed you
If some one give you a real apple and a fake apple (Toy), Can you make out the difference?
The same way an intelligent person with practice will find out who is the right teacher.
this is why i fully agree that buddhism IS a religion - too much is based on faith because intelligent people who CAN understand the teaching beyond doubt and have direct knowledge of its truths are in short supply

even such basic truth as dukkha is not immediately perceptible

it's interesting that you need to get awakened to the truth which should drive you to the awakening

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Mkoll
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Re: Can Enlightenment Be A Ruse?

Post by Mkoll » Thu Jun 26, 2014 6:38 am

No_Mind wrote:Do I seem to be vehement in this post, do I seem to be arguing or do I seem to be calmly sharing a view.
If you're not vehement, you're surely enthusiastic about coming to share your new views with everyone on Dhamma Wheel. Also, not putting question marks at the end of questions does not make you "not vehement" either. ;)
No_Mind wrote:Does it seem that this position I hold came from wrong information or my own understanding.
You've already admitted you could be completely wrong on page two. So I'll go with answers A and B.
No_Mind wrote:Do I seem to have any doubt or do I seem perfectly serene.
Again, you've admitted that you could be completely wrong so obviously you have doubt.
No_Mind wrote:Is my faith shaken or is it that now when I have realized that Nirvana means perfect manifestation of Eight Fold Path I have decided to rededicate myself with ten times the effort to his Dharma.
That's elementary. But I'm glad you know it now. May your practice be fruitful!
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa

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No_Mind
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Re: Can Enlightenment Be A Ruse?

Post by No_Mind » Thu Jun 26, 2014 1:50 pm

Mkoll wrote:
No_Mind wrote:Do I seem to be vehement in this post, do I seem to be arguing or do I seem to be calmly sharing a view.
If you're not vehement, you're surely enthusiastic about coming to share your new views with everyone on Dhamma Wheel. Also, not putting question marks at the end of questions does not make you "not vehement" either. ;)
You like potato and I like potahto !!
Mkoll wrote:
No_Mind wrote:Does it seem that this position I hold came from wrong information or my own understanding.
You've already admitted you could be completely wrong on page two. So I'll go with answers A and B.
You like tomato and I like tomahto !!
Mkoll wrote:
No_Mind wrote:Do I seem to have any doubt or do I seem perfectly serene.
Again, you've admitted that you could be completely wrong so obviously you have doubt.
You say laughter and I say larfter
You say after and I say arfter !!
Mkoll wrote:
No_Mind wrote:Is my faith shaken or is it that now when I have realized that Nirvana means perfect manifestation of Eight Fold Path I have decided to rededicate myself with ten times the effort to his Dharma.
That's elementary. But I'm glad you know it now. May your practice be fruitful!
Since you are from USA I believe you are well versed with the song. If I ever visit "Kalifornia" will drop in on you and we can discuss Dhamma.
:toast:
I know one thing: that I know nothing

vesak2014
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Re: Can Enlightenment Be A Ruse?

Post by vesak2014 » Thu Jun 26, 2014 2:47 pm

No_Mind wrote: Someone here few days back warned me of rebirth in lower realms if I did not immediately stop being an agnostic and became an atheist.
Hi No_Mind, I never meant to say so, you have been misunderstood. I meant only to give you some information, not to frighten you. This is also the reason I didn't answer your questions on that thread of yours. I said the choice is yours. I didn't expect you to argue. It is about faith, conviction, saddha, something no one can be forced to believe.

Enlightenment (in buddhist context) is a ruse only for those who don't understand or don't have any idea. You are from India, the birthplace of Buddhism, yet you look for the answer on western forum. It is not a problem at all, I'm just expressing how ironic dhamma ending age can be. The place where buddhism was flourish and now buddhism have become minority. You seem to be serious with your inquiries about enlightenment. Let me try to shed light for you.

Since Theravada is almost all about commentary, earlier I thought there is no Theravada monk who looks at the four main nikayas anymore. Until I found from a thread someone pointed out on this thread :
Nyana wrote:Given your penchant for reading Vedic views into the dhamma there's probably very little point in trying to clarify this issue. But here are a couple of contemporary Theravāda authors who refute your ideas about consciousness and nibbāna:

Nibbana is not Viññāṇa. Really, it just isn’t by Ven Sujato.

The Mind Stilled: 33 Sermons on Nibbāna by Ven. Ñāṇananda.
[ I'm not sure if Ven Nanananda's view of Nibbana is the same as Ven Sujato's. I haven't gone through the 33 audio talks, too much to go through for me. I tried to listen some yet I didn't get any of his points. But from the title, "Mind Stilled", it suggests the same idea. So I guess they have the same view. ]
Ven Sujato's understanding of nibbana can be found just right there is suttas, yet it doesn't seem to be popular. What popular in the mainstream Theravada these days is the Burmese Vipassana movement, besides the Thai Forest tradition. Even among thai buddhist monks I heard there is view that vipassana is a kind of shortcut to enlightenment compared to samatha. There is samatha-vipassana dichotomy. Discounting Noble 8-fold Path to Noble 7-fold Path is also a contribution of vipassana movement. No wonder many newcomers got lost. The problem is that they don't known they've got lost.

Those who rely on commentary and don't investigate the suttas usually only know the exposition of nibbana or epithet of nibbana, that's the farthest they know, they are stuck. The entire Buddhist path (the theory) is still a big mystery for them. "End of suffering", "free from greed, hatred, delusion", "cessation of craving", they are only expositions. "Unconditioned", "deathless", they are only epithets. Expositions and epithets, they are the other words used by the Buddha to say something about nibbana.
This is where the problem lays. The problem can be seen from the way, the technique to accomplish it. A quite famous monk from a well known lineage on his video (someone posted on another thread) says to abandon craving (tanha). A famous burmese vipassana teacher taught to observe feeling (vedana), resorting to indifferent feeling so that there will be no craving. Anyone who understands, or at least considers the law of dependent origination can see the problem in those approaches. Now compare it with what Ven Sujato said. Since it doesn't seem to be so popular, probably many theravadins never heard it before. He said: "cessation of consciousness".
Take a look at a very good sutta quote someone replied on the same thread:
kirk5a wrote:SN 12.51 wrote:
"When there is utterly no consciousness, with the cessation of consciousness, would name-and-form be discerned?"
"No, venerable sir."
This is the more complete quote of the sutta:
SN 12.51 wrote:SN 12.51
When there is utterly no consciousness, with the cessation of consciousness, would name-and-form be discerned?”

“No, venerable sir.”

“When there is utterly no name-and-form … no six sense bases ... ... no contact ... no feeling ... no craving ... no clinging ... no existence … no birth, with the cessation of birth, would aging-and-death be discerned?”

“No, venerable sir.”

“Good, good, bhikkhus! It is exactly so and not otherwise! Place faith in me about this, bhikkhus, resolve on this. Be free from perplexity and doubt about this. Just this is the end of suffering.”
Now you can see what the Buddha's instruction is and what those vipassana-fever teachers' is. The Buddha taught to work on (resolve on) the lowest of the chain of the dependent origination, while today's teachers teach to work on somewhere in the middle of the chain of dependent origination. The Buddha taught to destroyed the root - to make like a palmyra stump, deprived of further arising, while today's teachers teach to destroy the stem or branch.

"That's all I have to say about that". Please allow me to borrow the Forrest Gump quote (someone has used it in this forum.)
ps: I don't know if you can understand it or it is what you are looking for. Nevertheless, may this information useful for anyone with faith in the teaching.

:anjali:

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No_Mind
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Re: Can Enlightenment Be A Ruse?

Post by No_Mind » Thu Jun 26, 2014 3:23 pm

vesak2014 wrote:I said the choice is yours. I didn't expect you to argue. It is about faith, conviction, saddha, something no one can be forced to believe.

Enlightenment (in buddhist context) is a ruse only for those who don't understand or don't have any idea. You are from India, the birthplace of Buddhism, yet you look for the answer on western forum. It is not a problem at all, I'm just expressing how ironic dhamma ending age can be. The place where buddhism was flourish and now buddhism have become minority. You seem to be serious with your inquiries about enlightenment. Let me try to shed light for you.
Vesak2014 I do not take Buddhism (or any religion/ philosophy) that seriously. I believe in Eight Fold Path but I do not have saddha of the type you describe. I do not think I can ever have unless there is some kind of a miracle (and miracles are a strict no in Buddhism). If Lord Buddha's kaya is still there somewhere in nothingness perhaps he will cause a miracle (me to have saddha)

There are several answers to why Buddhism disappeared in India - due to Brahmins, due to Shashanka of Gauda, due to rise of Vedanta, due to Islamic invaders Mahmud of Ghazni and Muhammad of Ghor etc will be some of the reasons.

There is no shame in learning Buddhism in a "Western Forum". I am more Western than Indian. There is very little Indian in me apart from my face (which will most likely be mistaken as that of a fair Hispanic in Albuquerque, NM; I can safely travel with false papers in name of Jose Garcia and no one will bat an eyelid)

If one Indian can sell the whole world steel (ArcelorMittal) why cannot another Indian learn Buddhism from rest of the world? I have no such false sense of ownership about Buddha. If the nation which ruled the waves (Britain) can buy ships from Hyundai, South Korea, I can learn Buddhism from everyone else.

But I enjoy your replies and responses :thumbsup:
I know one thing: that I know nothing

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Mkoll
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Re: Can Enlightenment Be A Ruse?

Post by Mkoll » Thu Jun 26, 2014 10:35 pm

No_Mind wrote:Since you are from USA I believe you are well versed with the song.
Actually, I had no idea it was a song. I thought it was just an expression or idiom.
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa

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No_Mind
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Re: Can Enlightenment Be A Ruse?

Post by No_Mind » Thu Jun 26, 2014 11:24 pm

Mkoll wrote:
No_Mind wrote:Since you are from USA I believe you are well versed with the song.
Actually, I had no idea it was a song. I thought it was just an expression or idiom.
Fred Astaire at his best. Enjoy

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZ3fjQa5Hls
I know one thing: that I know nothing

SarathW
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Re: Can Enlightenment Be A Ruse?

Post by SarathW » Thu Jun 26, 2014 11:27 pm

No_Mind wrote:
vesak2014 wrote:I said the choice is yours. I didn't expect you to argue. It is about faith, conviction, saddha, something no one can be forced to believe.

Enlightenment (in buddhist context) is a ruse only for those who don't understand or don't have any idea. You are from India, the birthplace of Buddhism, yet you look for the answer on western forum. It is not a problem at all, I'm just expressing how ironic dhamma ending age can be. The place where buddhism was flourish and now buddhism have become minority. You seem to be serious with your inquiries about enlightenment. Let me try to shed light for you.
Vesak2014 I do not take Buddhism (or any religion/ philosophy) that seriously. I believe in Eight Fold Path but I do not have saddha of the type you describe. I do not think I can ever have unless there is some kind of a miracle (and miracles are a strict no in Buddhism). If Lord Buddha's kaya is still there somewhere in nothingness perhaps he will cause a miracle (me to have saddha)

There are several answers to why Buddhism disappeared in India - due to Brahmins, due to Shashanka of Gauda, due to rise of Vedanta, due to Islamic invaders Mahmud of Ghazni and Muhammad of Ghor etc will be some of the reasons.

There is no shame in learning Buddhism in a "Western Forum". I am more Western than Indian. There is very little Indian in me apart from my face (which will most likely be mistaken as that of a fair Hispanic in Albuquerque, NM; I can safely travel with false papers in name of Jose Garcia and no one will bat an eyelid)

If one Indian can sell the whole world steel (ArcelorMittal) why cannot another Indian learn Buddhism from rest of the world? I have no such false sense of ownership about Buddha. If the nation which ruled the waves (Britain) can buy ships from Hyundai, South Korea, I can learn Buddhism from everyone else.

But I enjoy your replies and responses :thumbsup:
Give a big applause to these westerners who teach Buddhism to Indians and Sri Lankans.

:clap: :clap: :clap:
http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=18177
Did Arthur C Clarke say this?
http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=16297
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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