Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths - what can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
markandeya
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Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Post by markandeya » Sat Aug 04, 2018 5:07 pm

Hi Budo
Yeah, the dhamma of ~2.5 thousand years ago, straight from the horses mouth, the ONE pure dhamma.
Are you saying that there has only ever been one Buddha, the historical awakening of Siddharta, that he was the first ever human being to attain enlightenment and since then no others.Your post also seems to have written off all the other traditions at the same time in your OP.

If so , and I am not challenging but what brings you that conclusion.



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Re: Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Post by DooDoot » Sat Aug 04, 2018 11:10 pm

MN 115 says there is only one self-awakened Buddha in a world-system. If a mind attained enlightenment by following the teachings of others, how could it be a "SammasamBuddha"? :shrug: SN 56.11 says Buddha realisation was of things never heard before.

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Re: Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Post by markandeya » Sun Aug 05, 2018 4:52 am

Yes Buddha is not two

and world system is ones OWN cosmology, its not meaning anything like the Christ version of one saviour of the world.

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Re: Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Post by budo » Sun Aug 05, 2018 7:08 pm

I'm saying that there is only one truth, and that truth distorts over time until it is refreshed again.

Because there is only one truth, there are many falses, so falses always win and grow over time, and that's why the one truth needs to be refreshed. The entity behind the truth is irrelevant, but the one truth is rare and so it's usually one entity that discovers the one truth between long gaps of time periods.

In other words, it's easy to be wrong, and extremely difficult to be right.

All theories, all sciences, are just distorted proximities of the one truth, be it called string theory, the buddha dhamma, or whatever you want to call it. In this timeline we call it "Buddha dhamma", in another timeline it can have another name.

Because the source of the one truth has died over 2.5 thousand years ago, we only have distorted copies of it, like the game broken telephone. The next Buddha will refresh the one truth again.

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Re: Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Post by DooDoot » Sun Aug 05, 2018 9:37 pm

markandeya wrote:
Sun Aug 05, 2018 4:52 am
and world system is ones OWN cosmology, its not meaning anything like the Christ version of one saviour of the world.
Na... no evidence for this... :roll: For me, if I personally engaged in such discursive imaginings, it would be childish, immature & dishonest for me. I would suggest to do some basic intellectual research on the term 'ekissā lokadhātuyā' (and inform us of your results).

The evidence is found in the Great Pyramids, Bible, Taoism, Vedas, etc. There is no historical evidence of the Four Noble Truths/Dependent Origination and Three Characteristics/Emptiness taught before Gotama Buddha. Since all past Buddhas referred to in a few suttas improbably arose in India; it appears there were probably no Buddhas before Gotama, despite references in the suttas. I think only a mind clinging with blind faith to scriptures would ignore the historical evidence there were no Buddhas before Gotama. I doubt among men living in caves; without the evolution of sensual pleasures (to lose infatuation with); Buddhas would arise. Just like for Jews the Messiah only comes to Jews in Israel; similarly, the religious propaganda for the later Indian Buddhists was Buddhas only arise in India.

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Re: Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Post by markandeya » Sun Aug 05, 2018 10:48 pm

Thanks for your reply Budho. I am only asking for clarity of context, hopeful something good will come out it.
I'm saying that there is only one truth, and that truth distorts over time until it is refreshed again.

To define the question better, are you saying since Gotama Buddha there has not been anyone that has achieved enlightenment, since that time. If so what is the tested method to verify this and by what means can this be known and accepted as a concrete fact, just to make sure its not just an idea. I just want to be clear. And how is it refreshed.

Its something I heard but havent read it as I dont do mass study of suttas, I have a limited amount of texts that form the basis which seems to provide everything I need, so forgive my lack of full sutta knowledge. The story was near to the end of Gotama's life and what I heard or read if true some time ago was that he said his teachings will be misrepresented before the coals on his funeral pyre would be cold. If any one could find this would be helpful for future reference.

again you mention the word theory, I dont see suttas or any text as theory, the translations and commentary can be classed more as the theory and that has a limitation but not totally useless.
Because the source of the one truth has died over 2.5 thousand years ago, we only have distorted copies of it, like the game broken telephone. The next Buddha will refresh the one truth again.
Who is we, and again what is the verification that there have not been any Buddhas or awakenings since 2,500 years ago. Is there a possibility that they are kept in lineages even if in small percentages of true knowers.

Can the pali texts give an exact account of the Buddhas teachings, because Gotama did not write them or even speak in Pali, if they were not written by an enlightened person they maybe subject to defect, im just looking at possibilities, to make sure we are finding the exact teaching as given 2,500 years ago.

is there any dates when the Buddha is coming, is it predicted in the suttas, what happens between 2,500 years ago and the next Buddha for practitioners. Is enlightenment possible in the present day and age.

Again I am just searching for the right context so not to misunderstanding anything.

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Re: Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Post by budo » Sun Aug 05, 2018 11:03 pm

markandeya wrote:
Sun Aug 05, 2018 10:48 pm
Thanks for your reply Budho. I am only asking for clarity of context, hopeful something good will come out it.
I'm saying that there is only one truth, and that truth distorts over time until it is refreshed again.

To define the question better, are you saying since Gotama Buddha there has not been anyone that has achieved enlightenment, since that time.
There is a difference between a Buddha and a regular arahant, there's a difference between Mogallana who developed all his powers and a regular arahant. There are several types of arahant, Mogallana was one of the highest. Therefore one can be enlightened but cannot teach nor see beings in other planes of existence. Only a Buddha has developed all perfections to the highest level, thus only the Buddha can teach with highest purity.
If so how what is the tested method to verify this and by what means can this be known and accepted as a concrete fact, just to make sure its not just an idea. I just want to be clear. And how is it refreshed.
You can only verify for yourself through practice and meditation, and I believe the buddha said how to judge someone's information. But at the end of the day you have to test it out for yourself through practice.
Its something I heard but havent read it as I dont do mass study of suttas, I have a limited amount of texts that form the basis which seems to provide everything I need, so forgive my lack of full sutta knowledge. The story was near to the end of Gotama's life and what I heard or read if true some time ago was that he said his teachings will be misrepresented before the coals on funeral pyre would be cold. If any one could find this would be helpful for future reference.
Yes, everything is impermanent.

again you mention the word theory, I dont see suttas or any text as theory, the translations and commentary can be classed more as the theory and that has a limitation but not totally useless.
Anything that is not direct experience is a theory, just an idea with no personal experience to back it up.

The point of my original post was that obviously people are going to attain enlightenment in the buddha's presence and hearing the words directly coming out of his mouth versus 2.5 thousand years later in written form and after several councils. Just like someone who worked with Albert Einstein is more likely to understand his ideas better than 2nd hand interpreters and German to English translators.


Who is we, and again what is the verification that there have not been any Buddhas or awakenings since 2,500 years ago. Is there a possibility that they are kept in lineages even if in small percentages of true knowers.
Modern people, yes it's possible. Regardless, my main point is that there is no alive buddha right now for you to get direct spoken knowledge from. So all you have is the fallibility of non-buddhas. Therefore relying on theory is not enough.
Can the pali texts give an exact account of the Buddhas teachings, because Gotama did not write them or even speak in Pali, if they were not written by an enlightened person they maybe subject to defect, im just looking at possibilities, to make sure we are finding the exact teaching as given 2,500 years ago.
Check out Bhikkhu Analayo's work, this is his specialty.
is there any dates when the Buddha is coming, is it predicted in the suttas, what happens between 2,500 years ago and the next Buddha for practitioners. Is enlightenment possible in the present day and age.
I believe some levels of enlightenment are still possible for those who are determined to practice and not question the Buddha's teaching on Jhanas.

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Re: Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Post by DooDoot » Mon Aug 06, 2018 12:59 am

markandeya wrote:
Sun Aug 05, 2018 10:48 pm
To define the question better, are you saying since Gotama Buddha there has not been anyone that has achieved enlightenment, since that time....
Na. It appears the question was not defined better because the "theory" was wrong from the very start. There is a difference between a Buddha and a regular arahant. Also, there are several types of Buddha/Arahant. Buddhism 101 Theory. If we get the basic theory right, we won't have these constant on-going communication problems. :?
markandeya wrote:
Sun Aug 05, 2018 10:48 pm
Its something I heard but havent read it as I dont do mass study of suttas...
I think such excuses are not relevant. Its all a matter of agreeing on basic terms of communication; like when going to France and speaking the French language. MN 115 says only one SAMMASAMBUDDHA in a world-system. Currently SAMMASAMBUDDHA refers only to Gotama, as is chanted everyday in the homage to the Buddha; as follows:



A SAMMASAMBUDDHA also cannot be in female form (MN 115). Other arahants or silent Buddhas are not SAMMASAMBUDDHA.
Sammāsambuddha (Pāli), Samyaksaṃbuddha (Skt.). Perfectly Enlightened One, Supremely Awakened One; the proper title of Gotāma the Buddha, marking him out from all other beings, including the other variety of enlightened person, the paccekabuddha (prateyaka-buddha).

© 2016 Encyclopedia.com | All rights reserved.
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budo wrote:
Sun Aug 05, 2018 11:03 pm
There is a difference between a Buddha and a regular arahant, there's a difference between Mogallana who developed all his powers and a regular arahant. There are several types of arahant, Mogallana was one of the highest. Therefore one can be enlightened but cannot teach nor see beings in other planes of existence. Only a Buddha has developed all perfections to the highest level, thus only the Buddha can teach with highest purity.
The Buddha called Sariputta the one equal to him as a teacher but Sariputta did not have any supernormal powers. My impression is the supernormal powers of Mogallana don't change the definition of 'Arahant' (but i could be wrong). Mara has supernormal powers.

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Re: Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Post by markandeya » Mon Aug 06, 2018 6:38 am

Thanks again for your answers Budho and willingness to discuss, lets test the metal of your theory or statement.

I am struggling with a few things, firstly are you limiting Buddha to an historical person, that lived 2,500 years ago. Is there any reference within the suttas that says that he is limited to that time era and that he will perfect his teachings at a later linear time date sometime in the future, when someone meets him in person and has a dhamma conversation with him.
There is a difference between a Buddha and a regular arahant
Are there any examples of arahats being liberated from the cycle of samasra and over coming greed, hatred and delusion, would that not be enough, in the suttas there are many examples of the people hearing directly from the Buddha and becoming awakened, would this not be considered as also becoming Buddha~ awake, so by your idea it seems that not even people who heard from him directly have attained enlightenment and become Buddha, as there is only one, a historical person fixed in time, unless there is a difference between enlightened state and Buddha.

Buddha is one, arahat seems to be a term to describe a state, a level of accomplishment, saint works but only to some limiting degree. I dont see how anyone can become Siddharta Gotama who attained enlightenment but can become ( bad wording) Buddha~awake if its seen in transpersonal state. it seems to me that what your saying is that everything is fixed into personal states as beings fixed within a linear timeline. When there is something more subtle and expansive going on, where the vāda relate to all 3 lokas emanating from Tathāgata.

My pali is not good enough but perhaps we can look more into the meaning of vāda as speech as you say is needed, and by hearing that speech directly from the Buddha for perfection as described in the suttas. I can do this from a Sanskrit point of view but I am sure its there in the pali. Can Sanskirt words help, Tathāgata, the highest title that the Buddha gave to himself is after all a Sanskrit word.

vāda is translated wrongly as theory or doctrine in academic studies and among general understanding, this is where the main confusion comes, as vāda does not mean theory or doctrine, its speech vāc and according to Sanskrit translations vāda has 4 quarters, all relating to the lokas, from gross, mental, subtle to Absolute. Lokas here again is always within the context of conscious abodes, not planets or external universal world systems that we have in empirical sciences, this may lead to flat round earths debates, which has nothing to do with Dhamma cosmology.

Bikkhu bodhi translates lokas as spheres, as conscious dimensions rather than external objective planetary systems and the world as land mass.


Karma Loka, sense sphere
Rupa Loka , mind sphere
Arupa Loka immaterial sphere
Lokuttara Transcendent to spheres, world transcendent.

This builds up the correct picture of what is meant by oral tradition based on vāda which leads to direct experience and awakening and leading to Tathāgata. Any pali equivalents that you or other members can find to Sanskrit maybe a worthy study for people that rely on external verification's and could promote a better understanding of Buddha Dhamma and not limiting it to being reliant on Historical personalities and categories.

As I understand Maha Mogallana and Venerable Sariuptra were attendants of the Buddha, Moon and Sun, this has esoteric significance within the lokas, due to Tathāgata not being able to directly communicate with the world, I prefer to think of the word loka as state of existence rather than planetary definition, which is where there seems to be some confusion.
You can only verify for yourself through practice and meditation, and I believe the buddha said how to judge someone's information. But at the end of the day you have to test it out for yourself through practice.
I agree, although the word judge may not fit into dhamma, sounds a bit to much like a courtroom saga. Thats for mundane intellectuals and teddy bears who have a habit of talking to themselves and chasing shadows. Quite a concern, but best to leave them in the corner until they turn around and see wider perspective, we can only hope.....
Anything that is not direct experience is a theory, just an idea with no personal experience to back it up.

While I agree, as Buddha Dharma is totally based on experience rather than artificial intellectual construction, that just causes debates and mundane mental proliferation, which I am assuming from your initial intent is part of your post, which I agree, but am confused with somethings. Intellectual and has little relation to vāda, some but very little and nothing at all if only stuck in that domain. vāda impacts directly on conscious experience, but some need a certain amount of theory it due to social conditioning and habits of modes of education and some engage to bring a bit more clarity to the table within the mundane mental speculators and so called intellectuals of academics, Again here we need a correct understanding of vāda to get down to the real essence of what is oral tradition and speech of Buddha.

An interesting read is the series Achieving transcendence by Ron Wijjenwantha who tries to explore some of the reasons why people are not becoming enlightened, it forms some basis but is a bit to technical.

The point of my original post was that obviously people are going to attain enlightenment in the buddha's presence and hearing the words directly coming out of his mouth versus 2.5 thousand years later in written form and after several councils. Just like someone who worked with Albert Einstein is more likely to understand his ideas better than 2nd hand interpreters and German to English translators.
I get your point, again there has to be some rediscovery of vāda, which will help with essence of sutta. Your comments on Einstein while I understand what your saying is not scientific.
Modern people, yes it's possible. Regardless, my main point is that there is no alive buddha right now for you to get direct spoken knowledge from. So all you have is the fallibility of non-buddhas. Therefore relying on theory is not enough.


Well at least there is some hope. How does one get enlightened without the physical appearance of the original one true Buddha 2,500 years ago, there maybe some danger of contradiction arising.
Check out Bhikkhu Analayo's work, this is his specialty
Nice monk, I have only listened to few things, I think he is trying to specialize within the Academic field, let's hope he can bring some clarify to theorists and empirical studies, who are looking for verification in the wrong way. I will keep him in mind for some reference, but I may not be able to go to much in depth, I only have a few simple texts for practice which is enough. If you could be more specific on how the Pali suttas are infallible without the presence of Siddharta Gotama The One and Only True Buddha ( sounds a bit Church Clergy Christ like) would save me hours of listening and wading through all that he says.
I believe some levels of enlightenment are still possible for those who are determined to practice and not question the Buddha's teaching on Jhanas.
What level of enlightenment is available to those who do not question the teachings on Jhana's, the beatific states, and what is the teachings and practices that support jhana cultivation, or do people just sit and sit patiently and wait for something to happen. I have read elsewhere that you promote this which is very good and your attainments are interesting, so there should be correlation of insights and knowledge, so it will be beneficial if you can give more Sasana. Could you start a thread on your insights on Jhana cultivation.

One question that pops up is , what happens when a person attains some level of enlightenment as you put it, but doesnt reach the final goal of freedom from samsara, what happens next, do they stay in the world system waiting for the second coming of Buddha.

:anjali:

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Re: Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Post by budo » Mon Aug 06, 2018 9:17 am

markandeya wrote:
Mon Aug 06, 2018 6:38 am
Thanks again for your answers Budho and willingness to discuss, lets test the metal of your theory or statement.

I am struggling with a few things, firstly are you limiting Buddha to an historical person, that lived 2,500 years ago. Is there any reference within the suttas that says that he is limited to that time era and that he will perfect his teachings at a later linear time date sometime in the future, when someone meets him in person and has a dhamma conversation with him.

This is not relevant to what I said earlier, that one closer to the source of truth is more likely to get enlightened compared to a truth that has been distorted and corrupted by time.

There is no "later date", an individual who has attained full enlightenment is not reborn. A new Buddha will arise in the future. As you said you are not familiar with Buddhism, perhaps you should study it first as I am not interested in going over the basics and writing essays.

Are there any examples of arahats being liberated from the cycle of samasra and over coming greed, hatred and delusion, would that not be enough, in the suttas there are many examples of the people hearing directly from the Buddha and becoming awakened, would this not be considered as also becoming Buddha~ awake, so by your idea it seems that not even people who heard from him directly have attained enlightenment and become Buddha, as there is only one, a historical person fixed in time, unless there is a difference between enlightened state and Buddha.
The point of my earlier response is that not all arahants can teach or know how to teach, and there are even silent buddhas who do not teach and even if they do, their teaching is not powerful enough to last. Again, basic buddhism information, look up the paramita https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P%C4%81ramit%C4%81
Buddha is one, arahat seems to be a term to describe a state, a level of accomplishment, saint works but only to some limiting degree. I dont see how anyone can become Siddharta Gotama who attained enlightenment but can become ( bad wording) Buddha~awake if its seen in transpersonal state. it seems to me that what your saying is that everything is fixed into personal states as beings fixed within a linear timeline. When there is something more subtle and expansive going on, where the vāda relate to all 3 lokas emanating from Tathāgata.
This is off topic and irrelevant to my original post, a Buddha is not an arahant, he does not enter a path. Read about the paramitas https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P%C4%81ramit%C4%81


The simple answer is that the Buddha has perfected the paramitas and has tremendous power to enlighten people on the spot, whereas a regular Arahant may not have the energy to deal with people, they may be introverted.


As for the rest of your post, it is not relevant to my original post, and not something I am interested in. Not because I agree or disagree, but because it is overly theoretical, sounds like mental masturbation to me, and exhausting to weed through. You see, I cannot become a Buddha because I don't have the energy to engage in things I'm not interested in :)

Even the Buddha himself did not enjoy these discourses, as he often ends interactions with the reflection
When the Buddha had given this advice he got up from his seat and left. Not long after the Buddha left, Dīghāvu passed away. Then several mendicants went up to the Buddha, bowed, sat down to one side, and said to him: “Sir, the lay follower named Dīghāvu, who was advised in brief by the Buddha, has passed away. Where has he been reborn in his next life?” “Mendicants, the lay follower Dīghāvu was astute. He practiced in line with the teachings, and did not trouble me about the teachings. With the ending of the five lower fetters, he’s reborn spontaneously. He’ll be extinguished there, and is not liable to return from that world.”
and
"Monks, the clansman Pukkusati was wise. He practiced the Dhamma in accordance with the Dhamma and did not pester me with issues related to the Dhamma. With the destruction of the first five fetters, he has arisen spontaneously [in the Pure Abodes], there to be totally unbound, never again to return from that world."
Ask me about my meditation and I'll help you with that, but don't ask someone who is against fishing to go fishing, someone who is against mental masturbaton to mentally masturbate.

Cheers
Last edited by budo on Mon Aug 06, 2018 9:26 am, edited 1 time in total.

markandeya
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Re: Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Post by markandeya » Mon Aug 06, 2018 9:20 am

Thanks Budho

I still think your avoiding the question.

i didnt say I dont know much about Buddhism, although I am always learning, I said I dont know every single sutta.

My questions remain unanswered and you have swerved from the question about needing to hear from a the One True teacher in linear time, 2500 years ago.

ajahn luang por chah said one can learn all the dhammas just by being obervant of a tree, but you seem to saying one needs to listen to some messiah figure and since that date 2500 year ago every teacher in Buddha Dhamma tradition is a watered down version.

But you claim to be a meditation teacher :shrug:

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Re: Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Post by budo » Mon Aug 06, 2018 9:29 am

markandeya wrote:
Mon Aug 06, 2018 9:20 am
Thanks Budho

I still think your avoiding the question.

i didnt say I dont know much about Buddhism, although I am always learning, I said I dont know every single sutta.

My questions remain unanswered and you have swerved from the question about needing to hear from a the One True teacher in linear time, 2500 years ago.

ajahn luang por chah said one can learn all the dhammas just by being obervant of a tree, but you seem to saying one needs to listen to some messiah figure and since that date 2500 year ago every teacher in Buddha Dhamma tradition is a watered down version.

But you claim to be a meditation teacher :shrug:

:anjali:
All I said is that theory is useless because the theory has expired over time like organic orange juice being cheapened into fanta, and that meditation is the only way to produce natural orange juice in a time of fanta theory. In fact your laung reference aligns with what I said, that you are better to learn the dhamma from meditating than reading theoretical texts.

Everything else is your own projection and assumptions.

Point to me where I claimed to be a meditation teacher, I only said ask me about things I'm interested in. Do you see how you yourself distort reality and words here and now? If you are so quick to distort things, what makes you think the dhamma in theory hasn't also been distorted?

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Re: Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Post by markandeya » Mon Aug 06, 2018 9:54 am

Sutta and sasana has been distorted by theory, they are not the same thing.

this doesnt meant that sutta and sasana is limited to that distortion

My questions based on your OP have still not been answered. Although I appriciate any effort to deal with these things and point towards practice.

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Re: Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Post by budo » Mon Aug 06, 2018 9:56 am

markandeya wrote:
Mon Aug 06, 2018 9:54 am
Sutta and sasana has been distorted by theory, they are not the same thing.

this doesnt meant that sutta and sasana is limited to that distortion

My questions based on your OP have still not been answered. Although I appriciate any effort to deal with these things and point towards practice.
Perhaps meditation will answer your questions instead of text & theory

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Re: Off topic from: If you think you're going to get anywhere with theory

Post by markandeya » Mon Aug 06, 2018 10:07 am

Budho

There is no need for me to verify, I dont study theory, I have some simple texts and practice, its enough for me. I am half agreeing with you but I am asking for explanation in public statement that you have made.

If you want to avoid it thats fine.

i dont need any essays, a few syllables is enough for me

:anjali:

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