John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Textual analysis and comparative discussion on early Buddhist sects and texts.
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Mkoll
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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by Mkoll » Tue Dec 30, 2014 7:06 am

Sylvester wrote:Very problematic passage. Not sure if you've noticed it, but that section ends off with a recommendation that dhammā are to be abandoned. It is dhamma in the plural, typically reserved for phenomena. I'm not sure what to make of this, in the context of Dhammas (ie Norms, Laws etc) when that idea is typically expressed in the singular. :shrug:
I'd guess that is the intention but as you say, :shrug: .
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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by sphairos » Tue Dec 30, 2014 9:40 am

Dear Mkoll,

"That's the Buddha."

In short, The Buddha says, that in order to become a Buddha, you must get rid of any views, transcend everything and see everything as it is. This is sammādiṭṭhi and ariyo aṭṭhangiko maggo. There is no other way than this transcendence. They are transcendence.

And remember, that Sammādiṭṭhi-sutta (MN 9) says, that

69. "When, friends, a noble disciple understands the taints, the origin of the taints, the cessation of the taints, and the way leading to the cessation of the taints, in that way he is one of right view, whose view is straight, who has perfect confidence in the Dhamma and has arrived at this true Dhamma".

71. "When a noble disciple has thus understood the taints, the origin of the taints, the cessation of the taints, and the way leading to the cessation of the taints, he entirely abandons the underlying tendency to lust, he abolishes the underlying tendency to aversion, he extirpates the underlying tendency to the view and conceit 'I am,' and by abandoning ignorance and arousing true knowledge he here and now makes an end of suffering. In that way too a noble disciple is one of right view, whose view is straight, who has perfect confidence in the Dhamma and has arrived at this true Dhamma."

When one has directly seen everything as it is, destroyed the asavas and anusayas, made the end of suffering, then he really got "sammādiṭṭhi". Unless he is just an "unenlightened worldling" (but he may be sekha - one who strives to know)
Last edited by sphairos on Tue Dec 30, 2014 12:32 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by sphairos » Tue Dec 30, 2014 9:50 am

Dear Sylvester,

There is no problem at all. "uttaritara" is of course a comparative of "uttara". So: "he knows what's higher" ("transcend" means "be superior or better than some standard"). That means that he transcends what is lower. There is really no problem, just possible word-choices for the same meaning. That "transcends" etc. is perfectly justified he proves masterfully throughout his book and articles. But it's not Fuller alone. Many scholars and Buddhist teachers have roughly the same "views" on this. :)
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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by Mkoll » Tue Dec 30, 2014 10:59 pm

sphairos wrote:Dear Mkoll,

"That's the Buddha."

In short, The Buddha says, that in order to become a Buddha, you must get rid of any views, transcend everything and see everything as it is. This is sammādiṭṭhi and ariyo aṭṭhangiko maggo. There is no other way than this transcendence. They are transcendence.

And remember, that Sammādiṭṭhi-sutta (MN 9) says, that

69. "When, friends, a noble disciple understands the taints, the origin of the taints, the cessation of the taints, and the way leading to the cessation of the taints, in that way he is one of right view, whose view is straight, who has perfect confidence in the Dhamma and has arrived at this true Dhamma".

71. "When a noble disciple has thus understood the taints, the origin of the taints, the cessation of the taints, and the way leading to the cessation of the taints, he entirely abandons the underlying tendency to lust, he abolishes the underlying tendency to aversion, he extirpates the underlying tendency to the view and conceit 'I am,' and by abandoning ignorance and arousing true knowledge he here and now makes an end of suffering. In that way too a noble disciple is one of right view, whose view is straight, who has perfect confidence in the Dhamma and has arrived at this true Dhamma."

When one has directly seen everything as it is, destroyed the asavas and anusayas, made the end of suffering, then he really got "sammādiṭṭhi". Unless he is just an "unenlightened worldling" (but he may be sekha - one who strives to know)
And to get rid of views, transcend everything and see everything as it is, destroy the asavas, and make an end to suffering, one must fully develop the Noble Eightfold Path.

Or do you disagree?
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by vinasp » Wed Dec 31, 2014 2:25 am

Hi Mkoll,

sphairos wrote:- "It's all about vision, seeing and getting rid of any "views"

Mkoll replied:- "Yes, that is true. But the method to reach that attainment is the Noble Eightfold Path, not "getting rid of views" or "transcending views," whatever that practice may entail...."

But who is actually on the Noble Eightfold Path?

Regards, Vincent..

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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by Mkoll » Wed Dec 31, 2014 2:51 am

vinasp wrote:Hi Mkoll,

sphairos wrote:- "It's all about vision, seeing and getting rid of any "views"

Mkoll replied:- "Yes, that is true. But the method to reach that attainment is the Noble Eightfold Path, not "getting rid of views" or "transcending views," whatever that practice may entail...."

But who is actually on the Noble Eightfold Path?

Regards, Vincent..
How does one get on the Noble Eightfold Path?
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by vinasp » Wed Dec 31, 2014 3:27 am

Hi Mkoll,

Mkoll said:- "How does one get on the Noble Eightfold Path?"

That is a good question. AN 7.54 gives some clues:

"The uninstructed run-of-the-mill person doesn't discern view, doesn't discern the origination of view, doesn't discern the cessation of view, doesn't discern the path of practice leading to the cessation of view, and so for him that view grows. He is not freed from birth, aging, & death; from sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, and despairs. He is not freed, I tell you, from suffering & stress.

[The puthujjana (above) is not on the Noble Eightfold Path, but the noble disciple (below) is on the path. How did he get there? By penetrating the four truths.]

But the instructed disciple of the noble ones discerns view, discerns the origination of view, discerns the cessation of view, discerns the path of practice leading to the cessation of view, and so for him that view ceases. He is freed from birth, aging, & death; from sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, and despairs. He is freed, I tell you, from suffering & stress."
[part of AN 7.54 (BB, TNDB), AN 7.51 (Thanissaro - ATI).]

Regards, Vincent.

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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by Mkoll » Wed Dec 31, 2014 3:43 am

vinasp wrote:Hi Mkoll,

Mkoll said:- "How does one get on the Noble Eightfold Path?"

That is a good question. AN 7.54 gives some clues:

"The uninstructed run-of-the-mill person doesn't discern view, doesn't discern the origination of view, doesn't discern the cessation of view, doesn't discern the path of practice leading to the cessation of view, and so for him that view grows. He is not freed from birth, aging, & death; from sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, and despairs. He is not freed, I tell you, from suffering & stress.

[The puthujjana (above) is not on the Noble Eightfold Path, but the noble disciple (below) is on the path. How did he get there? By penetrating the four truths.]

But the instructed disciple of the noble ones discerns view, discerns the origination of view, discerns the cessation of view, discerns the path of practice leading to the cessation of view, and so for him that view ceases. He is freed from birth, aging, & death; from sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, and despairs. He is freed, I tell you, from suffering & stress."
[part of AN 7.54 (BB, TNDB), AN 7.51 (Thanissaro - ATI).]

Regards, Vincent.
How does one penetrate the four truths?
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa

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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by vinasp » Wed Dec 31, 2014 3:55 am

Hi Mkoll,

Mkoll said: - "How does one penetrate the four truths?"

Suffering = views.

Regards, Vincent.

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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by Mkoll » Wed Dec 31, 2014 4:04 am

vinasp wrote:Hi Mkoll,

Mkoll said: - "How does one penetrate the four truths?"

Suffering = views.

Regards, Vincent.
Huh? Is that an answer to a "how" question?
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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by Sylvester » Wed Dec 31, 2014 4:29 am

sphairos wrote:Dear Sylvester,

There is no problem at all. "uttaritara" is of course a comparative of "uttara". So: "he knows what's higher" ("transcend" means "be superior or better than some standard"). That means that he transcends what is lower. There is really no problem, just possible word-choices for the same meaning. That "transcends" etc. is perfectly justified he proves masterfully throughout his book and articles. But it's not Fuller alone. Many scholars and Buddhist teachers have roughly the same "views" on this. :)

Hi sphairos

Might you be able to offer some passages where this comparative adjective uttaritara is not adnominal but can be read verbally?

I think treated logically and grammatically, the object in the sentence which the Buddha knows as something superior is alluded to in the next clause as "taṃ pajānanaṃ" (that understanding). This understanding is contrasted to "ime diṭṭhiṭṭhānā" (these bases for views) criticised in the preceding analyses of each specific view. If the object of the Buddha's knowing is taṃ pajānanaṃ in the Pali, then Fuller's interpretation of uttaritara as the verb "transcends" introduces a totally different object, namely the inferior diṭṭhiṭṭhānā. I am quite unconvinced that we can take liberties like this with the text.

OK, let's dispense with my over-scrupulous grammatical analysis and accept that the phrase can be translated and interpreted as Fuller suggests of "transcends". Does the text actually support Fuller in saying that view/diṭṭhi is transcended or to be transcended? Actually, this is one of the most common mistakes made in reading DN 1. The standard reading implies that DN 1 sets out 62 views. This is incorrect. There are actually only about 10 * groups of views/diṭṭhi but 62 bases for views/diṭṭhiṭṭhānā that are used to construct the total of 10 types of diṭṭhi.

* using the organisation into 10 classes employed in BB‘s translation.

And nowhere does Fuller slip more spectacularly on this than in Chap 4. Despite noting that -

1. the Stream-Enterer is diṭṭhisampanna (accomplished in views) by having Right View; and
2. the Stream-Enterer is diṭṭhiṭṭhānappahāyina (free from the bases of views),

he goes on to introduce the transcending of views as normative of Right View, when the texts simply point to the giving up of the bases of views. And this is confirmed by a more careful reading of DN 1, where the Buddha rejects the 62 bases for views, in favour of knowledge. If you look at the types of views in DN 1 (discounting the dreadful eel-wrigglers), you can see the underlying epistemological methods used to arrive at views from the bases of views. Those views depend on a mixture of Induction and synthetic a priori reasoning (borrowing from Kant for the latter). None of these methods, in Western logic, guarantee truth, and it's something that the Buddha was zooming in for criticism.

If Fuller had not slipped up and had instead argued that the texts actually advocate knowledge over bases of views, I would have little to quarrel with his otherwise magisterial work.
Last edited by Sylvester on Wed Dec 31, 2014 1:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by vinasp » Wed Dec 31, 2014 4:36 am

Hi Mkoll,

By seeing that 'suffering' means 'mental formations', which includes ' views'.

The stream-winner has eliminated whichever of the 62 views he was holding.

In most cases this would be the eternalist view. All 62 views depend on the 'view of self' (sakkaya ditthi).

Regards, Vincent.

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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by Mkoll » Wed Dec 31, 2014 4:54 am

vinasp wrote:Hi Mkoll,

By seeing that 'suffering' means 'mental formations', which includes ' views'.

The stream-winner has eliminated whichever of the 62 views he was holding.

In most cases this would be the eternalist view. All 62 views depend on the 'view of self' (sakkaya ditthi).

Regards, Vincent.
Same question...how?

How does one come to "seeing that 'suffering' means 'mental formations', which includes ' views'."?
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa

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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by vinasp » Wed Dec 31, 2014 5:36 am

Hi Mkoll,

You seem to think that all members of DW should believe in literal rebirth.

What about those who, like myself, find it to be improbable, or even perhaps impossible.

How can we make ourselves believe it?

Regards, Vincent.

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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by Mkoll » Wed Dec 31, 2014 7:32 am

vinasp wrote:Hi Mkoll,

You seem to think that all members of DW should believe in literal rebirth.

What about those who, like myself, find it to be improbable, or even perhaps impossible.

How can we make ourselves believe it?

Regards, Vincent.
Whoa, that came out of the blue! Will you answer my question if I answer yours?

Firstly, I wouldn't say that I think all members of DW should believe in literal rebirth. I can't recall ever having the thought arise, "I wish everybody on DW believed in literal rebirth," or anything remotely like that. It's just that when individual members make posts about it that I want to respond to, I do. This happens quite often so I may come across as some kind of rebirth crusader. But the thing is that I don't recall ever creating a thread about rebirth, I only respond to others bringing it up. BTW, I had no idea you were skeptical about it because you're not aggressive about it and I respect that.

As far as views on rebirth, I don't see that it is about belief let alone forcing oneself to believe. I see it as an instance of "safeguarding the truth" as per the Canki Sutta. I've used the phrase working hypothesis before and it's a decent description. If one is skeptical, I guess that it's a matter of changing one's working hypothesis from "one life" or "I don't know" to "rebirth." That came rather naturally for me but I can definitely see how it could be difficult. Or one could just leave the whole matter alone and practice, but I think those who can do this are rare because the important question will likely keep cropping up in the mind unless it is appeased.

Everybody's different of course so YMMV.
MN 95 wrote:"Bharadvaja, first you went by conviction. Now you speak of unbroken tradition. There are five things that can turn out in two ways in the here-&-now. Which five? Conviction, liking, unbroken tradition, reasoning by analogy, & an agreement through pondering views. These are the five things that can turn out in two ways in the here-&-now. Now some things are firmly held in conviction and yet vain, empty, & false. Some things are not firmly held in conviction, and yet they are genuine, factual, & unmistaken. Some things are well-liked... truly an unbroken tradition... well-reasoned... Some things are well-pondered and yet vain, empty, & false. Some things are not well-pondered, and yet they are genuine, factual, & unmistaken. In these cases it isn't proper for a knowledgeable person who safeguards the truth to come to a definite conclusion, 'Only this is true; anything else is worthless."

"But to what extent, Master Gotama, is there the safeguarding of the truth? To what extent does one safeguard the truth? We ask Master Gotama about the safeguarding of the truth."

"If a person has conviction, his statement, 'This is my conviction,' safeguards the truth. But he doesn't yet come to the definite conclusion that 'Only this is true; anything else is worthless.' To this extent, Bharadvaja, there is the safeguarding of the truth. To this extent one safeguards the truth. I describe this as the safeguarding of the truth. But it is not yet an awakening to the truth.

"If a person likes something... holds an unbroken tradition... has something reasoned through analogy... has something he agrees to, having pondered views, his statement, 'This is what I agree to, having pondered views,' safeguards the truth. But he doesn't yet come to the definite conclusion that 'Only this is true; anything else is worthless.' To this extent, Bharadvaja, there is the safeguarding of the truth. To this extent one safeguards the truth. I describe this as the safeguarding of the truth. But it is not yet an awakening to the truth.
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa

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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by Sylvester » Wed Dec 31, 2014 1:29 pm

vinasp wrote:Hi Mkoll,

By seeing that 'suffering' means 'mental formations', which includes ' views'.

The stream-winner has eliminated whichever of the 62 views he was holding.

In most cases this would be the eternalist view. All 62 views depend on the 'view of self' (sakkaya ditthi).

Regards, Vincent.
I think it is only proper that you first return to explaining your sankhara theory in
http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=22462" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
before launching yet again into another meandering discussion which requires us to have a PhD into your interpretation of Buddhist soteriology.

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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by dhammacoustic » Wed Dec 31, 2014 3:35 pm

daverupa wrote:A moderate cross-section:
---
Buddhist Naturalism and the Myth of Rebirth
Kenneth K. Inada
International Journal for Philosophy of Religion
Vol. 1, No. 1 (Spring, 1970), pp. 46-53
http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/4 ... id=2&uid=4" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Hi daverupa, is this really worth 40 bucksImage
Uppādā vā tathagātanaṃ anuppādā vā tathagātanaṃ, ṭhitāva sā dhātu dhammaṭṭhitatā dhammaniyāmatā idappaccayatā. Taṃ tathagāto abhisam­buj­jhati abhisameti. Abhisam­bujjhitvā abhisametvā ācikkhati deseti paññāpeti paṭṭhapeti vivarati vibhajati uttānīkaroti. ‘Passathā’ti cāha; ‘avijjāpaccayā, bhikkhave, saṅkhārā’. Iti kho, bhikkhave, yā tatra tathatā avitathatā anaññathatā idappaccayatā-ayaṃ vuccati, bhikkhave, paṭiccasamup­pādo.
:heart: namō tassa bhagavatō, arahatō, sammā sambuddhassā

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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by daverupa » Wed Dec 31, 2014 4:04 pm

Inherently? No. Contextually? Perhaps. Depends on one's interests & so forth, what percentage of daily earnings forty dollars comprises, etc.

Is this off-topic banter mysteriously relevant? Or can I move these two posts elsewhere?
  • "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]

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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by dhammacoustic » Wed Dec 31, 2014 4:50 pm

daverupa wrote:Is this off-topic banter mysteriously relevant? Or can I move these two posts elsewhere?
?

I was about to pay for it, thought I'd get an opinion first since you seem to have read it.
Uppādā vā tathagātanaṃ anuppādā vā tathagātanaṃ, ṭhitāva sā dhātu dhammaṭṭhitatā dhammaniyāmatā idappaccayatā. Taṃ tathagāto abhisam­buj­jhati abhisameti. Abhisam­bujjhitvā abhisametvā ācikkhati deseti paññāpeti paṭṭhapeti vivarati vibhajati uttānīkaroti. ‘Passathā’ti cāha; ‘avijjāpaccayā, bhikkhave, saṅkhārā’. Iti kho, bhikkhave, yā tatra tathatā avitathatā anaññathatā idappaccayatā-ayaṃ vuccati, bhikkhave, paṭiccasamup­pādo.
:heart: namō tassa bhagavatō, arahatō, sammā sambuddhassā

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Re: John Peacock: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

Post by daverupa » Wed Dec 31, 2014 4:52 pm

Well, it can be PMs to let the thread stay uncluttered, you see. As for the value, I wouldn't pay that, but I get these sorts of things for free since I work at a university. It's probably worth hunting down from a library for the cost of a photocopy.
  • "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]

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