Value of interfaith studies

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths - what can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
Upeksha
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Re: Value of interfaith studies

Post by Upeksha » Fri Feb 23, 2018 10:22 pm

DooDoot wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 10:17 pm
Upeksha wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 9:49 pm
Maybe the issue here is that Gombrich is a historian and you are not really interested in engaging with historical arguments (which is fine btw - if you're a practitioner, I agree it is better to simply meditate on DO). He was famous well before the internet even existed and has been a well regarded scholar for many decades. History is of course contested and everyone has the right to offer alternative interpretations. But if you're going to critique him, you probably need to do so within the context of his own discipline.
I have already critiqued him elsewhere. His ideas are ridiculous to me. As for taking a 'historical' approach, this is equally irrelevant.
I think it is pretty relevant if you are going to critique a historian.

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DooDoot
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Re: Value of interfaith studies

Post by DooDoot » Fri Feb 23, 2018 10:23 pm

Upeksha wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 10:22 pm
I think it is pretty relevant if you are going to critique a historian.
Unrelated to Buddhism. DO has about experienceable mental arisings rather than about history.

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Sam Vara
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Re: Value of interfaith studies

Post by Sam Vara » Fri Feb 23, 2018 10:27 pm

Will wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 7:28 pm


To your first point, no. As to how to cultivate, my only guess (not much more than that) is stay with intense one-minded focus (ekagrata) (once one gets to the 4th jnana) and non-attachment. The latter is more helpful I suspect.

Yes, conceptual pondering is valuable & needed to help us drain our swamp of vices like craving, stupidity & anger. However, during that long, many lives process, attachment to any of a number of mental or devotional factors usually occurs. That is where the danger of attachment can weaken, even vitiate our work. I think that is why Buddha taught much about Renunciation being a powerful tool for both purification and eventual Bodhi.
Yes, that all makes sense to me. Many thanks, Will. :anjali:

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Will
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Re: Value of interfaith studies

Post by Will » Fri Feb 23, 2018 11:09 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 10:27 pm
Will wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 7:28 pm


To your first point, no. As to how to cultivate, my only guess (not much more than that) is stay with intense one-minded focus (ekagrata) (once one gets to the 4th jnana) and non-attachment. The latter is more helpful I suspect.

Yes, conceptual pondering is valuable & needed to help us drain our swamp of vices like craving, stupidity & anger. However, during that long, many lives process, attachment to any of a number of mental or devotional factors usually occurs. That is where the danger of attachment can weaken, even vitiate our work. I think that is why Buddha taught much about Renunciation being a powerful tool for both purification and eventual Bodhi.
Yes, that all makes sense to me. Many thanks, Will. :anjali:
My typo missed - should be 4th jhana, not jnana
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- AN 10.1

Upeksha
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Re: Value of interfaith studies

Post by Upeksha » Fri Feb 23, 2018 11:44 pm

DooDoot wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 10:23 pm
Upeksha wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 10:22 pm
I think it is pretty relevant if you are going to critique a historian.
Unrelated to Buddhism. DO has about experienceable mental arisings rather than about history.
1. The point is that it is related to the object of your criticism.
2. DO is also about the arising, abiding and ceasing of phenomenal and discursive things - including events such as the Buddha's discourses. Ironically, by denying any connection between Buddhist doctrine and history, you are turning the Buddha's discourses into something immune or separate from DO.

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DooDoot
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Re: Value of interfaith studies

Post by DooDoot » Sat Feb 24, 2018 2:46 am

Upeksha wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 11:44 pm
DO is also about the arising, abiding and ceasing of phenomenal and discursive things - including events such as the Buddha's discourses.
I think some sutta references are required to support the rather vague statement above because when I read the suttas DO is about the arising of sorrow, lamentation, pain, grief, despair & the whole mass of suffering. For example:
And what is dependent co-arising? From ignorance as a requisite condition come fabrications. From fabrications as a requisite condition comes consciousness. From consciousness as a requisite condition comes name-&-form. From name-&-form as a requisite condition come the six sense media. From the six sense media as a requisite condition comes contact. From contact as a requisite condition comes feeling. From feeling as a requisite condition comes craving. From craving as a requisite condition comes clinging. From clinging as a requisite condition comes becoming. From becoming as a requisite condition comes birth. From birth as a requisite condition, then aging & death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress & despair come into play. Such is the origination of this entire mass of stress & suffering.

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
:alien:
Upeksha wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 11:44 pm
Ironically, by denying any connection between Buddhist doctrine and history, you are turning the Buddha's discourses into something immune or separate from DO.
Obviously not. DO according to what I have read in the suttas is a diagnosis of how suffering psychologically arises. It transcends "recorded scholarly history" because DO exists & operates even when people are not aware of it.
And what, bhikkhus, is dependent origination? ‘With birth as condition, aging-and-death comes to be’: whether there is an arising of Tathagatas or no arising of Tathagatas, that element still persists, the stableness of the Dhamma, the fixed course of the Dhamma, specific conditionality. A Tathagata awakens to this and breaks through to it. Having done so, he explains it, teaches it, proclaims it, establishes it, discloses it, analyses it, elucidates it. And he says: ‘See! With birth as condition, bhikkhus, aging-and-death.’

https://suttacentral.net/en/sn12.20
DO is unrelated to any Brahman or other human doctrine because it exists in nature before any doctrines were invented or discovered. On the very 1st occasion in history when suffering occurred, it occurred due to DO. If an animal, like a dog, monkey or elephant, or a Homo Erectus caveman or cavewoman grieved the loss of its offspring in the year 2,000,000BC, this grieving occurred due to DO. The Brahmans & Samanas may have dabbled in meditative concentration but none of them, according to recorded history, discerned how suffering arises & how suffering can be completely eradicated.

Upeksha
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Re: Value of interfaith studies

Post by Upeksha » Sat Feb 24, 2018 5:08 am

DooDoot, thankyou for the dialogue.

I think we can both agree on this statement: you do not think that there is any value in interfaith studies, I think there is.

:anjali:

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Pseudobabble
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Re: Value of interfaith studies

Post by Pseudobabble » Sat Feb 24, 2018 1:02 pm

DooDoot wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 8:11 pm
Pseudobabble wrote:
Fri Feb 23, 2018 1:31 pm
Whether you have doubts is a separate matter from whether you are correct or not.
Since you don't know what is correct, what is the point of you posting this?
Your response conflated your confidence in your understanding with the correctness of that understanding, which is a categorical error of reasoning. Your opinions, interpretations, or judgements do not determine the fact.

I posted because do not feel it is appropriate confidently to present the views of a respected scholar as 'very confused', when you yourself are making obvious categorical errors of reasoning.


I do however agree with your interpretation, if it is adequately represented by:
DooDoot wrote: DO according to what I have read in the suttas is a diagnosis of how suffering psychologically arises.
"Does Master Gotama have any position at all?"

"A 'position,' Vaccha, is something that a Tathagata has done away with. What a Tathagata sees is this: 'Such is form, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is feeling, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is perception...such are fabrications...such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.'" - Aggi-Vacchagotta Sutta


'Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return.' - Genesis 3:19

'Some fart freely, some try to hide and silence it. Which one is correct?' - Saegnapha

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DooDoot
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Re: Value of interfaith studies

Post by DooDoot » Sun Feb 25, 2018 1:12 am

Pseudobabble wrote:
Sat Feb 24, 2018 1:02 pm
Your response conflated your confidence in your understanding with the correctness of that understanding, which is a categorical error of reasoning.
Why? I have never read this idea in Buddhism.
Pseudobabble wrote:
Sat Feb 24, 2018 1:02 pm
Your opinions, interpretations, or judgements do not determine the fact.
While this may be true, it also applies to everything you post. Buddhism is an experiential tradition. If you are unable to at least practise or verify my opinion in your own experience, it remains pointless to have a discussion. For example, if your opinion is "salt is sweet", I can taste salt to verify for myself that salt is sweet. But when i experience salt is salty rather than sweet, I can disagree with you. This is how the Buddha taught, as follows:
The fact that when greed is present within you, you discern that greed is present within you; and when greed is not present within you, you discern that greed is not present within you: that is one way in which the Dhamma is visible in the here-&-now, timeless, inviting verification, pertinent, to be realized by the wise for themselves.

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
:alien:
Pseudobabble wrote:
Sat Feb 24, 2018 1:02 pm
I posted because do not feel it is appropriate confidently to present the views of a respected scholar as 'very confused', when you yourself are making obvious categorical errors of reasoning.
I have made no error of reasoning. I am allowed to not respect the scholar. The scholar is not even a Buddhist. In summary, the non-Buddhist ideas you have posted also applies to yourself. In short, it simply gives the impression you are not practising Buddhist meditation. Imo, the following is non-sense:
Gombrich: " My conclusion is that Frauwallner and Hwang are right, and the Buddha's chain originally went back only five links, to thirst. (It could also go back six, seven, or eight links - nothing hangs on the difference.) Then, at another point, the Buddha produced a different causal chain to ironize and criticise Vedic cosmogony, and noticed that it led very nicely into the earlier chain - perhaps because it is natural for the creation of the individual to lead straight on to the six senses, and these, via 'contact' and 'feeling', to thirst. It is quite plausible, however, that someone failed to notice that once the first four links become part of the chain, it's negative version meant that in order to abolish ignorance one first had to abolish consciousness!"

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