Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

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zan
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Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

Post by zan » Sun Dec 01, 2019 8:34 pm

Does anyone know of any teachers who are classical orthodox Theravada for the most part but reject flux or momentariness?

Edit:

Momentariness in Theravada is a subatomic particle theory which explains reality as being composed of extremely tiny particles called kalapas, they disappear and reappear a billion times in the blink of an eye.

Momentariness is an interpretation of the sutta rise and fall of phenomena, and a perfectly valid one. However I know some teachers reject it and instead teach that rise and fall moreso denote macro events than extremely brief, microscopic events, while still retaining orthodox views on most or all other issues. I'm looking for these teachers.

Same exact school and teaching, different scale and more zoomed out in just this one interpretation.
Last edited by zan on Sun Dec 01, 2019 9:10 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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cappuccino
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Re: Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

Post by cappuccino » Sun Dec 01, 2019 8:39 pm

are you speaking of impermanence?

one of the three marks of existence

zan
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Re: Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

Post by zan » Sun Dec 01, 2019 9:06 pm

daveblack wrote:
Sun Dec 01, 2019 8:42 pm
zan wrote:
Sun Dec 01, 2019 8:34 pm
Does anyone know of any teachers who are classical orthodox Theravada for the most part but reject flux or momentariness?
Ajahn Mun and Ajahn Pannavaddho said "the citta never dies."
Thanks but that is a different issue. My fault for not being clear enough. I'm adding an explanation of momentariness to the op.

I'm looking for teachers that are totally orthodox (eternal citta is not orthodox) except don't agree with momentariness. Momentariness in Theravada is a subatomic particle theory which explains reality as being composed of extremely tiny particles called kalapas, they disappear and reappear a billion times in the blink of an eye.

Momentariness is an interpretation of the sutta rise and fall of phenomena, and a perfectly valid one. However I know some teachers reject it and instead teach that rise and fall denote more macro events than extremely brief, microscopic events, while still retaining orthodox views on most or all other issues. I'm looking for these teachers.
Never read anything I write as an accurate statement about anything whatsoever. First, look to wiser ones than I. Look to wise texts. Unless you can confirm their accuracy from a reliable source, treat my writings like word games, nothing more.

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Sam Vara
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Re: Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

Post by Sam Vara » Sun Dec 01, 2019 9:10 pm

zan wrote:
Sun Dec 01, 2019 8:34 pm
Does anyone know of any teachers who are classical orthodox Theravada for the most part but reject flux or momentariness?
Excellent question. Gombrich (in What the Buddha Thought, pp. 70-71) expresses the view that anicca has been over-literally and anachronistically interpreted by the commentaries to mean momentariness. He takes the Buddha to mean that at a certain point things arise, and eventually they pass away, and even while they are here they change; not that everything is, at every level, in a state of objective change - flux - which exceeds what we can experience.

I've not heard or read a Theravadan teacher being this explicit about, it, though. I'd be interested to hear if anyone has, and can give details as to where.
Last edited by Sam Vara on Sun Dec 01, 2019 9:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

zan
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Re: Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

Post by zan » Sun Dec 01, 2019 9:17 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Sun Dec 01, 2019 9:10 pm
zan wrote:
Sun Dec 01, 2019 8:34 pm
Does anyone know of any teachers who are classical orthodox Theravada for the most part but reject flux or momentariness?
Excellent question. Gombrich (in What the Buddha Thought, pp. 70-71) expresses the view that anicca has been over-literally and anachronistically interpreted by the commentaries to mean momentariness. He takes the Buddha to mean that at a certain point things arise, and eventually they pass away, and even while they are here they change; not that everything is, at every level, in a state of objective change - flux - which exceeds what we can experience.

I've not heard or read a Theravadan teacher being this explicit about, it, though. I'd be interested to hear if anyone has, and can give details as to where.
Thanks for the info.
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dharmacorps
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Re: Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

Post by dharmacorps » Sun Dec 01, 2019 9:21 pm

Seems to me that there are very advanced practitioners (i.e. arahants) who interpret this quite differently, which leads me to believe it doesn't ultimately matter that much how one interprets it. But if this is for the sake of academic argument then I digress.

zan
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Re: Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

Post by zan » Sun Dec 01, 2019 10:02 pm

dharmacorps wrote:
Sun Dec 01, 2019 9:21 pm
Seems to me that there are very advanced practitioners (i.e. arahants) who interpret this quite differently, which leads me to believe it doesn't ultimately matter that much how one interprets it. But if this is for the sake of academic argument then I digress.
Thanks. Who are they?
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char101
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Re: Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

Post by char101 » Mon Dec 02, 2019 2:00 am

What you are describing is the arising and ceasing of citta, cetasika, and rupa in abhidhamma. It is better to call this sankhara (conditioned) rather than flux or momentariness to emphasize the fact that they appear and disappear depending on a condition.

Since this is abhidhamma, one candidate for your criteria is probably Ajahn Chah lineage since AFAIK Ajahn Chah books rarely mentions abhidhamma teachings. According to https://americanmonk.org/vinaya-compari ... llowances/, Wat Pah Pong which is the monastery of Ajahn Chah rejects Abhidhamma in most cases.

zan
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Re: Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

Post by zan » Mon Dec 02, 2019 2:04 am

char101 wrote:
Mon Dec 02, 2019 2:00 am
What you are describing is the arising and ceasing of citta, cetasika, and rupa in abhidhamma. It is better to call this sankhara (conditioned) rather than flux or momentariness to emphasize the fact that they appear and disappear depending on a condition.

Since this is abhidhamma, one candidate for your criteria is probably Ajahn Chah lineage since AFAIK Ajahn Chah books rarely mentions abhidhamma teachings. According to https://americanmonk.org/vinaya-compari ... llowances/, Wat Pah Pong which is the monastery of Ajahn Chah rejects Abhidhamma in most cases.
Thanks. Momentariness is the correct term. There's even a point of controversy within the Pali Canon itself where the term is used in the English translation and many authors use this term when discussing this topic. It is a translation of the Pali "khanika".

The term "sankhara" does not necessarily denote the doctrine of flux or momentariness.

Also thanks for recommending those teachers.
Last edited by zan on Mon Dec 02, 2019 3:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
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robertk
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Re: Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

Post by robertk » Mon Dec 02, 2019 3:30 am

Momentariness is the correct term. There's even a point of controversy within the Pali Canon itself where the term is used in the English translation and many authors use this term when discussing this topic. It is a translation of the Pali "ksana
Perhaps you can give the contest for where ksana is used.
I am familiar with khanika, not this term.

zan
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Re: Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

Post by zan » Mon Dec 02, 2019 3:47 am

robertk wrote:
Mon Dec 02, 2019 3:30 am
Momentariness is the correct term. There's even a point of controversy within the Pali Canon itself where the term is used in the English translation and many authors use this term when discussing this topic. It is a translation of the Pali "ksana
Perhaps you can give the contest for where ksana is used.
I am familiar with khanika, not this term.
Whoops! Good catch. Thanks. Fixed.
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Dhammanando
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Re: Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

Post by Dhammanando » Mon Dec 02, 2019 6:19 am

zan wrote:
Sun Dec 01, 2019 8:34 pm
Does anyone know of any teachers who are classical orthodox Theravada for the most part but reject flux or momentariness?
I don't think it's possible. In classical Theravāda momentarism is a fundamental component of the commentarial apparatus and underscores nearly everything. Even Vinaya rules, for example, get analysed on momentarist presuppositions.

An example from Ajahn Thanissaro's account of the second saṅghādisesa rule (touching a woman with lustful intent):
Intention. The Vibhaṅga explains the term overcome with lust as meaning "impassioned, desiring, a mind bound by attraction." Altered, it says, can refer in general to one of three states of mind — passion, aversion, or delusion — but here it refers specifically to passion.

The Commentary adds a piece of Abhidhamma analysis at this point, saying that altered refers to the moment when the mind leaves its state of pure neutrality in the bhavaṅga under the influence of desire. Thus the factor of intention here can be fulfilled not only by a prolonged or intense feeling of desire, but also by a momentary attraction.
“Keep to your own pastures, bhikkhus, walk in the haunts where your fathers roamed.
If ye thus walk in them, Māra will find no lodgement, Māra will find no foothold.”
— Cakkavattisīhanāda Sutta

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Dhammanando
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Re: Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

Post by Dhammanando » Mon Dec 02, 2019 6:30 am

Removed off-topic posts - those concerned with teachers who neither were, nor ever claimed to be, exponents of "classical Theravada" (i.e. the form of Theravāda which treats the Abhidhamma and commentaries as authoritative on doctrine).
“Keep to your own pastures, bhikkhus, walk in the haunts where your fathers roamed.
If ye thus walk in them, Māra will find no lodgement, Māra will find no foothold.”
— Cakkavattisīhanāda Sutta

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Re: Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

Post by sunnat » Mon Dec 02, 2019 8:08 am

A deeper appreciation of anicca is had by the experience of bhanga nana. U ba Khin talks about the activation of anicca, which is apt. When the entire body has dissolved, when the knots of clinging are loosened, there is the experience of rapid, continuous arising and passing away throughout the mind-body phenomenon. It is like foam. A mass of bubbles vibrating. Flux.

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robertk
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Re: Classical, orthodox Theravada teachers who reject flux?

Post by robertk » Mon Dec 02, 2019 8:13 am

sunnat wrote:
Mon Dec 02, 2019 8:08 am
A deeper appreciation of anicca is had by the experience of bhanga nana. U ba Khin talks about the activation of anicca, which is apt. When the entire body has dissolved, when the knots of clinging are loosened, there is the experience of rapid, continuous arising and passing away throughout the mind-body phenomenon. It is like foam. A mass of bubbles vibrating. Flux.
These sort of strange experiences are likely to be born out of concentration type practices.

Actual moments of vipassana are, not surprisingly, momentary.

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