if you witness a crime

Textual analysis and comparative discussion on early Buddhist sects and texts.
frank k
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Re: if you witness a crime

Post by frank k » Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:17 pm

perception/sanna involves memory and ideas. Otherwise there's nothing to differentiate from bare sensory viññana at the 6 sense doors. 'a poisonous snake' as a perception, without memory and ideas, would have nothing to differentiate itself from a realistic fake snake made out of plastic or a coiled up rope that looks like a snake from a distance.
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suaimhneas
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Re: if you witness a crime

Post by suaimhneas » Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:21 pm

frank k wrote:
Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:07 pm
suaimhneas wrote:
Sun Aug 25, 2019 6:33 pm
Surely you agree concepts and ideas are in V&V? How can there be speech without these? Surely, these are speech fabricators? Unless one is like a zombie and mindless mouthing off empty syllables.
Yes, of course concepts and ideas have to be part of V&V,
but concepts and ideas are also part of sanna/perception.
So taking a metta V&V, 'may you be happy' in first jhana,
and a metta 'may you be happy' in the form of just paying attention (manasi karoti) to a sanna/perception,

they both have meaning, idea, concept, 'thought'. But in second jhana, it's a just a perception without a verbal word needing to label it.
OK, good. Thanks for clarifying.I think I agree with that.

It seems V&V doesn't have to be all of thought. There must be a certain amount of thought associated with sanna beyond first jhana, but it seems to be more in connection with recognition. I recognize my breathing has ceased. I recognize I am experiencing the sphere of nothingness. There is recognition/perception of the experience/object which comes with associated ideas.

It seems to me that the thought referred to in V&V can be more indirect and symbolic (maybe somewhat higher level in that sense). The mind can manipulate and combine the mental symbols without simultaneously experiencing what they represent. That's what language and speech does: words are symbols of images/ideas/concepts of experience.

And then in second jhana, as you say, there still seems to be perception/recognition and the ideas associated with that perception (but not the actual mental words).

suaimhneas
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Re: if you witness a crime

Post by suaimhneas » Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:26 pm

frank k wrote:
Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:17 pm
perception/sanna involves memory and ideas. Otherwise there's nothing to differentiate from bare sensory viññana at the 6 sense doors. 'a poisonous snake' as a perception, without memory and ideas, would have nothing to differentiate itself from a realistic fake snake made out of plastic or a coiled up rope that looks like a snake from a distance.
Sure, a big part of speech and language is relating and manipulating symbols and ideas. Language/speech is twice-removed from reality. The ideas directly associated with/generated by perception/experience are once-removed. The thought in V&V can, I think, be one more step removed. Below this, things are more direct (direct perception of experience and recognition of objects in the experience as ideas).
Last edited by suaimhneas on Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:49 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: if you witness a crime

Post by suaimhneas » Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:37 pm

frank k wrote:
Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:11 pm
yes, and yes.
I would say as you're firing off vaca, each word, before you say it out loud, is simultaneously happening with a mental recitation of that same word.
Just because you don't pre-rehearse an entire sentence or paragraph in your mind, before rapid firing each word, doesn't mean the mental unspoken word isn't there, otherwise you would be mispronouncing and misremembering words right?
There seems to be a fair bit of verbal mental machinery whirring away just below conscious level. Whether I fire out some words out my mouth in a conversation or fire them out internally in mental speech, that mental machinery, chugging away in the background quietly assembling the content, doesn't noticeably feel any different to me. Those background mental cogs and gears (just below the level of speech content) do seem to me the likely candidate for vaci sankhara (the machinery busy fabricating the speech, i.e. the speech-fabricator :) ).

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Volo
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Re: if you witness a crime

Post by Volo » Mon Aug 26, 2019 3:41 am

frank k wrote:
Sun Aug 25, 2019 6:25 pm

The point is, if V&V were just "application of mind and sustaining of mind", in first jhana, then the Buddha would have designated first jhana as noble silence. This is why SN 36.11 talks of speech ceasing in first jhana.
Speech is not possible in the first jhāna, that is what Buddha says in SN 36.11, but what causes speech ceases only in the second one, therefore it's "higher" noble silence.
Because it's possible to speak from jhana, but one does not.
Could you provide reference for that?

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Re: if you witness a crime

Post by frank k » Mon Aug 26, 2019 3:29 pm

But your speech fabricator still needs the mental unspoken words as point of comparison.
Think about when you slur a word, or you mispronounce it, or you say it with a slight accent unintentionally because you were conversing with foreigners, you notice that right away.
I understand what you're saying about the language being one step removed from the underlying thought, but an oral tradition, for it to work, those mental words need to be there as the reliable reference, memorized correctly not just for oneself but for the future preservation.

vitakka and vicara is money. It's the currency of Dhamma. It's the words of the Dhamma, it's Dhamma-vitakka. All the key dhamma you've memorized, before you practice, and you run the instructions through your memory, what form is it in? I don't think anyone would recollect anatta lakkhana sutta in a subverbal form without the words. It's in the form of, "rupam bhikkhave, anatta. rupam ca hidam ....", also known as dhamma-vitakka.

Vitakka accounts for some amount of thinking, such as, "wait a minute, I think I just chanted that slightly wrong, was it supposed to be rupa, or rupam?". Vicara would be exploring the topic of vitakka in more detail, such as examining the meaning of the pali words as you're chanting it.

It doesn't make sense to work with V&V that's subverbal. Then you can't differentiate it from a collection of sañña/perceptions that one pays attention (manasi karoti) to.



suaimhneas wrote:
Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:37 pm
frank k wrote:
Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:11 pm
yes, and yes.
I would say as you're firing off vaca, each word, before you say it out loud, is simultaneously happening with a mental recitation of that same word.
Just because you don't pre-rehearse an entire sentence or paragraph in your mind, before rapid firing each word, doesn't mean the mental unspoken word isn't there, otherwise you would be mispronouncing and misremembering words right?
There seems to be a fair bit of verbal mental machinery whirring away just below conscious level. Whether I fire out some words out my mouth in a conversation or fire them out internally in mental speech, that mental machinery, chugging away in the background quietly assembling the content, doesn't noticeably feel any different to me. Those background mental cogs and gears (just below the level of speech content) do seem to me the likely candidate for vaci sankhara (the machinery busy fabricating the speech, i.e. the speech-fabricator :) ).
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frank k
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Re: if you witness a crime

Post by frank k » Mon Aug 26, 2019 3:37 pm

What SN 36.11 says about first jhana, is that vocalized speech has ceased. It doesn't say, it's impossible to vocalize speech while in first jhana, or any other jhana for that matter.
Study AN 9.41 carefully, and SN 40 1-9 carefully, you'll see the various jhanas being interrupted with impurities.
In second jhana for example, the impure second jhana is interrupted by V&V. IMpure first jhana interrupted by sanna/perceptions of kaama/sensuality.
So obviously while one is in jhana, it's possible to have thoughts of sensuality, it's possible in 4th jhana to do piti/rapture if one wanted to, but if you do, then you no longer meet the requirement for that jhana.

This is born out by experience. If you can do a high quality 2nd jhana for example, it's not impossible to think, or to speak, but there's an extremely strong inertia and momentum that you don't want to break out of because its so blissful.

Volo wrote:
Mon Aug 26, 2019 3:41 am
frank k wrote:
Sun Aug 25, 2019 6:25 pm

The point is, if V&V were just "application of mind and sustaining of mind", in first jhana, then the Buddha would have designated first jhana as noble silence. This is why SN 36.11 talks of speech ceasing in first jhana.
Speech is not possible in the first jhāna, that is what Buddha says in SN 36.11, but what causes speech ceases only in the second one, therefore it's "higher" noble silence.
Because it's possible to speak from jhana, but one does not.
Could you provide reference for that?
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Volo
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Re: if you witness a crime

Post by Volo » Mon Aug 26, 2019 4:27 pm

frank k wrote:
Mon Aug 26, 2019 3:37 pm
What SN 36.11 says about first jhana, is that vocalized speech has ceased. It doesn't say, it's impossible to vocalize speech while in first jhana, or any other jhana for that matter.
Provide sutta evidences. Thanks.
Study AN 9.41 carefully, and SN 40 1-9 carefully, you'll see the various jhanas being interrupted with impurities.
In second jhana for example, the impure second jhana is interrupted by V&V.
I have already replied to this before (in some of your many topics). I will repeat: if I say "while I was alone in the room, my friend entered" it doesn't mean that if there are both of us, it would still be called "alone". Once somebody entered, I'm not alone. In the same way Moggallāna's words "While I dwelt therein perception and attention accompanied by sensuality assailed me" doesn't mean he was in jhāna and perceived sensuality. Once it aroused he left the jhāna. It is also clear from the Buddha's reply to him, that Buddha didn't consider that state to be jhāna.
IMpure first jhana interrupted by sanna/perceptions of kaama/sensuality.
Please, provide pali term for "impure jhāna".

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Re: if you witness a crime

Post by frank k » Mon Aug 26, 2019 6:15 pm

1. You can look up the relevant pali for SN 36.11 yourself. I'm not your servant. You're the one claiming it says "it's impossible to speak while in first jhana", the burden of proof is on you. I'm pointing out what it actually says is "speech has ceased in first jhana".

2. You obviously didn't read AN 9.41 carefully or even at all. Of course once the jhana is interrupted by impurity, it no longer meets the criteria for that particular jhana. The point is that within those 4 jhanas, one has free will, the ability to select the perceptions they attend and activities they do while in jhana. It's not a frozen wrong samadhi as VRJ (vism. redefinition of jhana) describes.

3. I'm using the term 'impure jhana' here for convenience. The Buddha doesn't say one way or the other, but its implied. IA place where he does use the term impure samadhi (parisuddha), is in the vinaya in reference to moggallana hearing sounds from imperturbable samadhi. The purpose of the 4 jhanas is to give the beginner a gradual training in samadhi that ensures samadhi is of high enough quality to see dukkha and realize nirvana. In other words, its both a gradual training and a quality assurance test to make sure samadhi is of minimum quality.

Volo wrote:
Mon Aug 26, 2019 4:27 pm
frank k wrote:
Mon Aug 26, 2019 3:37 pm
What SN 36.11 says about first jhana, is that vocalized speech has ceased. It doesn't say, it's impossible to vocalize speech while in first jhana, or any other jhana for that matter.
Provide sutta evidences. Thanks.
Study AN 9.41 carefully, and SN 40 1-9 carefully, you'll see the various jhanas being interrupted with impurities.
In second jhana for example, the impure second jhana is interrupted by V&V.
I have already replied to this before (in some of your many topics). I will repeat: if I say "while I was alone in the room, my friend entered" it doesn't mean that if there are both of us, it would still be called "alone". Once somebody entered, I'm not alone. In the same way Moggallāna's words "While I dwelt therein perception and attention accompanied by sensuality assailed me" doesn't mean he was in jhāna and perceived sensuality. Once it aroused he left the jhāna. It is also clear from the Buddha's reply to him, that Buddha didn't consider that state to be jhāna.
IMpure first jhana interrupted by sanna/perceptions of kaama/sensuality.
Please, provide pali term for "impure jhāna".
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BKh
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Re: if you witness a crime

Post by BKh » Wed Aug 28, 2019 5:52 am

santa100 wrote:
Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:21 pm
Sam Vara wrote:
Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:16 pm
If I see anything like that, I will probably do so. But this looks like a case of people disagreeing over the accuracy of translations, which are apparently made in good faith. The standards of proof for "corruption" and "misconduct" would appear to be higher. The best approach when one finds a translation with which one disagrees is to quietly revert to a translation one is happier with.
There was actually a real case last year that was definitely more serious than just "accuracy of translations". I notified SC about the error and it did take them quite a while to finally fixed it, which was kinda a surprise. They never replied back to me to explain why the phrase was left out in the first place! which makes me wonder what'd happen if I simply "minded my own business" and not making some noise and spreaded the info. out on a public record.
You sent your correction to a Gmail address that I don't think anyone was checking. As soon as someone reported the error to the proper place (the "report errors" thread on the discussion forum) the mistake was corrected without any hesitation. As with any project of its size, there have been hundreds of errors. It's odd that you present this as such a scandal, when in fact you reported the error to the wrong place and the mistake was indeed corrected immediately when brought to their attention.
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suaimhneas
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Re: if you witness a crime

Post by suaimhneas » Wed Aug 28, 2019 12:19 pm

frank k wrote:
Mon Aug 26, 2019 3:29 pm
But your speech fabricator still needs the mental unspoken words as point of comparison.
Think about when you slur a word, or you mispronounce it, or you say it with a slight accent unintentionally because you were conversing with foreigners, you notice that right away.
I understand what you're saying about the language being one step removed from the underlying thought, but an oral tradition, for it to work, those mental words need to be there as the reliable reference, memorized correctly not just for oneself but for the future preservation.
I still don't see a great deal of difference between physical and mental speech. If I'm internally mentally rehearsing some words in a foreign language that I'm trying to learn, some part of my mind will pick up on grammatical or syntax errors. That's the same for physical speech. This mental checker isn't mental speech per se but part of the underlying speech generation mechanism.

Going back to my earlier mention of psychological theories of speech production with usually three phases in such theories: conceptualization (involving the gathering together of ideas and concepts and meaning behind the speech), formulation (where this meaning is structured and syntax and words linked to the concepts) and, finally, the articulation stage (where the speech is actually expressed). Mental or physical speech articulation doesn't feel hugely different to me. I'd assume the background syntax checker is part of the formulation stage in the mind.

In your viewpoint, I think merely physical articulation ceases in first jhana (not mental articulation) and certainly not the formulation and conceptualization stages. And, then, in second jhana, the articulation and formulation stages and a least some of the conceptualization part of the mind would quiet (hence, lumping these all into vaci sankhara)? I tend to veer in the direction of thinking that both articulation and formulation stages cease in first jhana with the conceptualization stage ceasing in the second jhana, but wouldn't be too dogmatic on this (this could be wrong).

vitakka and vicara is money. It's the currency of Dhamma. It's the words of the Dhamma, it's Dhamma-vitakka. All the key dhamma you've memorized, before you practice, and you run the instructions through your memory, what form is it in? I don't think anyone would recollect anatta lakkhana sutta in a subverbal form without the words. It's in the form of, "rupam bhikkhave, anatta. rupam ca hidam ....", also known as dhamma-vitakka.

Vitakka accounts for some amount of thinking, such as, "wait a minute, I think I just chanted that slightly wrong, was it supposed to be rupa, or rupam?". Vicara would be exploring the topic of vitakka in more detail, such as examining the meaning of the pali words as you're chanting it.

It doesn't make sense to work with V&V that's subverbal. Then you can't differentiate it from a collection of sañña/perceptions that one pays attention (manasi karoti) to.
Frank, I definitely think there's some merit to your argument. If the question is posed: "can you *prove* using the suttas that mental speech is *not* part of V&V?", then I've yet to see a convincing argument to show it's not. Failure to prove a negative isn't the same thing as proving a positive though.

The oral tradition argument you make is an interesting one. You seem to be implying that actually mentally chanting the words of suttas is strongly associated with first jhana in the suttas. So what's the best evidence in this regard? What are the relevant parts of which suttas? Or for this oral tradition line of argument in general?

I think you have an interesting and seemingly viable argument and I think you do want it to gain wider currency. It can be tough work, though, working through all your sutta references and translations (and the argumentation isn't straightforward). That's probably only something the anoraks will do or even care about. You probably need something more concise and snappier for more general readers, i.e. something like a short article/paper of a few pages concisely laying out your key arguments on this. For example, Sujato's take in a blog post on this issue is pretty easy to read (and has been read quite a lot too, I suspect, because of that). I find it to be a somewhat laboured argument though and not entirely convincing. There's plenty of scope for the other case to be put (though using language such as "crimes", even if sincerely held, is probably only going to be counterproductive).

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Re: if you witness a crime

Post by santa100 » Wed Aug 28, 2019 1:31 pm

BKh wrote:You sent your correction to a Gmail address that I don't think anyone was checking. As soon as someone reported the error to the proper place (the "report errors" thread on the discussion forum) the mistake was corrected without any hesitation. As with any project of its size, there have been hundreds of errors. It's odd that you present this as such a scandal, when in fact you reported the error to the wrong place and the mistake was indeed corrected immediately when brought to their attention.
Smell like you're one of SC's lackeys based on what you've just said above. As I repeatedly mentioned, if it was really just the Gmail address that "no one was checking", at the very least, SuttaCentral should've replied to my email to clear up everything and inform me to use the proper email/report channel next time. I got nothing from them for over a year now. And no, there's no scandal, I simply provided the fact about the kind of treatment SC did to me, SarathW, and many others who just happen to diasgree with their agenda. Just so you know, SarathW was a true DhammaWheel veteran with over 11,000 posts! DW treats him with kindness and respect, while SC simply kicked him out.

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Re: if you witness a crime

Post by frank k » Wed Aug 28, 2019 2:39 pm

suaimhneas wrote:
Wed Aug 28, 2019 12:19 pm

Frank, I definitely think there's some merit to your argument. If the question is posed: "can you *prove* using the suttas that mental speech is *not* part of V&V?", then I've yet to see a convincing argument to show it's not. Failure to prove a negative isn't the same thing as proving a positive though.

The oral tradition argument you make is an interesting one. You seem to be implying that actually mentally chanting the words of suttas is strongly associated with first jhana in the suttas. So what's the best evidence in this regard? What are the relevant parts of which suttas? Or for this oral tradition line of argument in general?

I don't understand the question:
"can you *prove* using the suttas that mental speech is *not* part of V&V?",
do you mean to ask whether the suttas prove that mental speech is part of vāca (vocalized spoken speech)?

What the suttas clearly say, such as AN 8.30, the same mental talk explicitly stated with examples of quoted sentences, is the same vitakka in first jhana.

♦ “sādhu sādhu, anuruddha!
“Good, Anuruddha, very good.
sādhu kho tvaṃ, anuruddha,
It’s good that you think
(yaṃ taṃ mahā-purisa-vitakkaṃ) vitakkesi —
these thoughts of a great person:
(1) ‘app'-icchassāyaṃ dhammo,
(1) ‘This Dhamma is for one of few-desires,
nāyaṃ dhammo mah'-icchassa;
not for one of many-desires.
(2) santuṭṭhassāyaṃ dhammo,
(2) This Dhamma is for one who is content,
nāyaṃ dhammo a-santuṭṭhassa;
not for one who is dis-content.
(3) pavivittassāyaṃ dhammo,
(3) This Dhamma is for one who is reclusive,
nāyaṃ dhammo saṅgaṇik-ārāmassa;
not for one who who delights-in-social-gathering.
(4) āraddha-vīriyassāyaṃ dhammo,
(4) This Dhamma is for one of aroused-vigor,
nāyaṃ dhammo kusītassa;
not for one who is lazy.
(5) upaṭṭhitas-satissāyaṃ dhammo,
(5) This Dhamma is for one who has established-mindfulness,
nāyaṃ dhammo muṭṭhas-satissa;
not for one of muddled-mindfulness.
(6) samāhitassāyaṃ dhammo,
(6) This Dhamma is for one who is concentrated,
nāyaṃ dhammo a-samāhitassa;
not for one who is un-concentrated.
(7) paññavato ayaṃ dhammo,
(7) This Dhamma is for one endowed with discernment,
nāyaṃ dhammo dup-paññassā’ti.
not for one of dubious-discernment.’
tena hi tvaṃ, anuruddha,
Now then, Anuruddha,
imam-pi aṭṭhamaṃ mahā-purisa-vitakkaṃ vitakkehi —
the eighth great-person's-thought (that one) thinks:
(8) ‘nip-papañc-ārāmassāyaṃ dhammo nip-papañca-ratino,
(8) ‘This Dhamma is for one who enjoys non-proliferation-[of-objectification],-1- who delights in non-proliferation,
n-āyaṃ dhammo papañc-ārāmassa papañca-ratino’”ti.
not-for-one who enjoys & delights in proliferation-[of-objectification].’
(8 great vitakka lead to 4j)
♦ “yato kho tvaṃ, anuruddha, ime aṭṭha mahāpurisavitakke vitakkessasi,
“Anuruddha, when you think these eight thoughts of a great person, then—
tato tvaṃ, anuruddha, yāvadeva VAR ākaṅkhissasi,
whenever you want—
vivicceva kāmehi vivicca akusalehi dhammehi savitakkaṃ savicāraṃ vivekajaṃ pītisukhaṃ paṭhamaṃ jhānaṃ upasampajja viharissasi.
quite secluded from sensuality, secluded from unskillful qualities, you will enter & remain in the first jhāna: rapture & pleasure born of seclusion, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation.
♦ “yato kho tvaṃ, anuruddha, ime aṭṭha mahāpurisavitakke vitakkessasi, tato tvaṃ, anuruddha, yāvadeva ākaṅkhissasi, vitakkavicārānaṃ vūpasamā ajjhattaṃ sampasādanaṃ cetaso ekodibhāvaṃ avitakkaṃ avicāraṃ samādhijaṃ pītisukhaṃ dutiyaṃ jhānaṃ upasampajja viharissasi.
When you think these eight thoughts of a great person, then—whenever you want—with the stilling of directed thoughts & evaluations, you will enter & remain in the second jhāna: rapture & pleasure born of concentration, unification of awareness free from directed thought & evaluation—internal assurance.


======================================================
Follow the word vitakka all the way through. There isn't some special different kind of vitakka that changes meaning in first jhana. Unless the Buddha expected a time traveler 1000 years after this happened, to go back and give each bhikkhu a special instruction, "by the way, vitakka in first jhana means placing the mind and keeping it connected, not ordinary thinking."
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Re: if you witness a crime

Post by frank k » Wed Aug 28, 2019 2:48 pm

suaimhneas wrote:
Wed Aug 28, 2019 12:19 pm
I think you have an interesting and seemingly viable argument and I think you do want it to gain wider currency. It can be tough work, though, working through all your sutta references and translations (and the argumentation isn't straightforward). That's probably only something the anoraks will do or even care about. You probably need something more concise and snappier for more general readers, i.e. something like a short article/paper of a few pages concisely laying out your key arguments on this. For example, Sujato's take in a blog post on this issue is pretty easy to read (and has been read quite a lot too, I suspect, because of that). I find it to be a somewhat laboured argument though and not entirely convincing. There's plenty of scope for the other case to be put (though using language such as "crimes", even if sincerely held, is probably only going to be counterproductive).
I will work on making a concise synopsis, but there no replacement for reading the full audit.

And it's not just how many words and how short the synopsis.
B. Analayo's fallacious arguments for example, in his V&V views, doesn't take that long to read, but you have to really know the source material to follow the logic and spot the fallacy.
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BKh
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Re: if you witness a crime

Post by BKh » Wed Aug 28, 2019 4:06 pm

Smell like you're one of SC's lackeys...
Because I pointed out that you incorrectly reported an error on the site that was fixed as soon as someone reported it correctly?

It's fine to talk about a translators biases, but this particular argument doesn't hold up.
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