Phenomenology question - view about the world

Exploring modern Theravāda interpretations of the Buddha's teaching.

Witch view is correct ?

Option 1
3
21%
Option 2
11
79%
 
Total votes: 14

Sylvester
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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by Sylvester » Mon Sep 12, 2016 4:04 am

SDC wrote:
Sylvester wrote:
If, friends, internally the eye is intact but no external forms come into its range, and there is no corresponding conscious engagement (tajja samannāhāra = attention), then there is no manifestation of the corresponding section of consciousness. If internally the eye is intact and external forms come into its range, but there is no corresponding conscious engagement, then there is no manifestation of the corresponding section of consciousness. But when internally the eye is intact and external forms come into its range and there is the corresponding conscious engagement, then there is the manifestation of the corresponding section of consciousness.

MN 28
Strange, but it appears that external sense objects can exist independently of consciousness and attention...
But does that constitute being independent of mind especially in regards to Dhp 1? Where is this "range" located?
Hi SDC

As for the "range" (āpātha), pls check out its formulaic usage in eg-
Bhikkhus, in regard to forms cognizable by the eye, if in any bhikkhu or bhikkhunī lust still exists and has not been abandoned, if hatred still exists and has not been abandoned, if delusion still exists and has not been abandoned, then even trifling forms that enter into range (āpātha) of the eye obsess the mind, not to speak of those that are prominent. For what reason? Because lust still exists and has not been abandoned, hatred still exists and has not been abandoned, delusion still exists and has not been abandoned. The same in regard to sounds cognizable by the ear ... mental phenomena cognizable by the mind.

SN 35.231


As for Dhp 1, I go for the prosaic interpretation that ties it back to SN 22.79 -
And why, bhikkhus, do you call them volitional formations? ‘They construct the conditioned,’ bhikkhus, therefore they are called volitional formations. And what is the conditioned that they construct? They construct conditioned form as form; they construct conditioned feeling as feeling; they construct conditioned perception as perception; they construct conditioned volitional formations as volitional formations; they construct conditioned consciousness as consciousness. ‘They construct the conditioned,’ bhikkhus, therefore they are called volitional formations.
Certainly, it seems difficult to map "mind" directly to "volitional formations", but I treat verse as being more liberal than formal suttas.

:anjali:

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by chownah » Mon Sep 12, 2016 4:25 am

SamKR wrote:
chownah wrote:
chownah wrote:I think it is impossible to know which view is correct....knowing this is out of range. If someone has found a way to know this I would like to hear it.
chownah
Its the same old arguements again and again. All conjecture, all construal. Impossible to know. If it was possible to know it would be known and the arguements would cease. The continuation of the argument keeps reaffirming that it is impossible to know.
chownah
One approach (and I think that would be the best approach) is to drop all conjectures and construing (which by nature are uncertain) and have certainty only about that which can be directly known as they are without any need of any interpretations. Both options in the OP can not be directly known, and are mere conjectures/construing (except the part "The "external world" has no substance").
I think the approach you describe is good....but you don't even need to go that far. If people want to conjecture and construe it is probably ok if they do as long as they remember that they are just conjecturinlg and construeing. If they keep this in mind then the path is still open for them to discern how this arises and so they then have a path to perhaps discern the aggregates in action. If they don't accept that it is conjecture and construal then I think the path will lead them to "only this is truth and all else is false" and to wrong view at least as I see wrong view.
My approach is that in this type of discussion that people begin and end their post with a disclaimer that re-affirms that the six sense bases are not adequate to discern and that all that is to be said or has been said is just conjecture and construal or something to that effect or similar.......then just go ahead and conjecture and construe to you hearts content.
chownah

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by Dinsdale » Mon Sep 12, 2016 4:48 am

Nicolas wrote:My view is that the Middle Way is to go beyond these ideas of "existence" or "non-existence", which are meaningless terms in a sense, and to look at things from a phenomenological perspective, paṭiccasamuppāda.
Sure, dependent arising and conditionality. But that requires the presence of sense-objects, and sense-objects imply something "out there".

For example in the Sabba Sutta, the All is described as the sense-bases and their objects. But without visible form, sounds, smells etc there would be no experience.

The Blessed One said, "What is the All? Simply the eye & forms, ear & sounds, nose & aromas, tongue & flavors, body & tactile sensations, intellect & ideas. This, monks, is called the All. "
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

And in the Loka Sutta contact arises in dependence on sense-base, sense-object and sense-consciousness. But there would be no contact without sense-objects, and sense-objects imply something "out there".

The Blessed One said: "And what is the origination of the world? Dependent on the eye & forms there arises eye-consciousness. The meeting of the three is contact...."
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

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acinteyyo
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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by acinteyyo » Mon Sep 12, 2016 6:15 am

Janalanda wrote:Witch view is correct ?

1) The "external world" [...] does not really exist.

2) The "external world" exists [...]
Both views are examples of wrong view.
SN12.15 wrote:By & large, Kaccayana, this world is supported by (takes as its object) a polarity, that of existence & non-existence. But when one sees the origination of the world as it actually is with right discernment, 'non-existence' with reference to the world does not occur to one. When one sees the cessation of the world as it actually is with right discernment, 'existence' with reference to the world does not occur to one.
There is an arising of an external world and a cessation of an external world in dependence on conditions.

The view "the external world exists" as well as its opposite view is based on conceit, on the false believe that "I am this here and that is the world there", in whatever way this may manifest. It somehow assumes permanence in what is impermanent.

With me arises my world so to say, but anyhow to jump from this to the conclusion of absolute non-existence of the world when "I am" not is denying how the world arises. And on the other hand to believe the world exists when "I am" not denies how the world ceases. The same principle applies for the other two possible combinations of existence and non-existence of the world and being.

So "when one sees the origination of the world as it actually is with right discernment, 'non-existence' with reference to the world does not occur to one. When one sees the cessation of the world as it actually is with right discernment, 'existence' with reference to the world does not occur to one".

best wishes, acinteyyo
Thag 1.20. Ajita - I do not fear death; nor do I long for life. I’ll lay down this body, aware and mindful.

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acinteyyo
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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by acinteyyo » Mon Sep 12, 2016 6:30 am

Spiny Norman wrote: Sure, dependent arising and conditionality. But that requires the presence of sense-objects, and sense-objects imply something "out there".

And in the Loka Sutta contact arises in dependence on sense-base, sense-object and sense-consciousness. But there would be no contact without sense-objects, and sense-objects imply something "out there".
This neatly supports what I tried to point out in my earlier post.

Instead of considering and giving emphasise on the implication of "out there" (of which I agree that there seems in fact to be such an implication) have you considered that along with it there comes the implication of "in here"? Has anyone given attention to the mutual dependence of these views (in here/out there) and how they play a role in the fabrication of the world and more important maybe how they represent a subject/object relationship which is nothing else but "I-making" par excellence?

What would happen or which view would arise in one who sees that relationship and how it plays out with respect to the notions of existence and non-existence?

Would there still occure the view the world exists or the view the world does not exist?

I don't think it would.

best wishes, acinteyyo
Thag 1.20. Ajita - I do not fear death; nor do I long for life. I’ll lay down this body, aware and mindful.

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by Sylvester » Mon Sep 12, 2016 8:22 am

But is the "bound" interpretation inexorable?

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by acinteyyo » Mon Sep 12, 2016 9:35 am

Sylvester wrote:But is the "bound" interpretation inexorable?
Could you please give me a hint what exactly you are referring to?
Thag 1.20. Ajita - I do not fear death; nor do I long for life. I’ll lay down this body, aware and mindful.

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by Sylvester » Mon Sep 12, 2016 11:15 am

acinteyyo wrote:
Sylvester wrote:But is the "bound" interpretation inexorable?
Could you please give me a hint what exactly you are referring to?

Hi acinteyyo

It was a point canvassed in the Timeless Model thread, where 2 variants of Phenomenology's "bound" interpretation were addressed by pointing out 3 paradoxes which cannot be explained by the bound interpretation. Here are several posts addressing one of the bound interpretations -

http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.ph ... 60#p380656

http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.ph ... 60#p380751

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acinteyyo
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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by acinteyyo » Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:14 pm

Sylvester wrote:
acinteyyo wrote:
Sylvester wrote:But is the "bound" interpretation inexorable?
Could you please give me a hint what exactly you are referring to?

Hi acinteyyo

It was a point canvassed in the Timeless Model thread, where 2 variants of Phenomenology's "bound" interpretation were addressed by pointing out 3 paradoxes which cannot be explained by the bound interpretation. Here are several posts addressing one of the bound interpretations -

http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.ph ... 60#p380656

http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.ph ... 60#p380751
Thank you for the links Sylvester, but unfortunately I cannot really comprehend what the "bound" interpretation is.
I bowed out of the Timeless Model thread exactly because I couldn't follow those ideas any longer.

If your question was addressed at me, maybe you want to formulate it in a different way so that I can relate to it?
Thag 1.20. Ajita - I do not fear death; nor do I long for life. I’ll lay down this body, aware and mindful.

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by SDC » Mon Sep 12, 2016 2:01 pm

Janalanda wrote:So you agree with me ? The living parents will continue to exist and manifest as a condition for phenomenons that appear in other living persons phenomenological world ?
Not really.

Like I said there is already too much implied in the question itself that I do not agree with. It assumes both POVs maintain an equal priority and that the significance of death is identical in both cases. So IMO any answer ends up in favor of this framework. But don't let my opinion dissuade you because I do not have the final say.

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by Janalanda » Mon Sep 12, 2016 2:20 pm

SDC wrote:
Janalanda wrote:So you agree with me ? The living parents will continue to exist and manifest as a condition for phenomenons that appear in other living persons phenomenological world ?
Not really.

Like I said there is already too much implied in the question itself that I do not agree with. It assumes both POVs maintain an equal priority and that the significance of death is identical in both cases. So IMO any answer ends up in favor of this framework. But don't let my opinion dissuade you because I do not have the final say.
Does the phenomenological world of your parents exist independent of your phenomenological world ? If you die, if your phenomenological world disappears - will your parents and their phenomenological world continue to exist ?

What you are saying is that your view does not need to be logic. That your view is above logic. That your view is dependent on other views like "priority" or "significance" not on logic. I too was caught up in this view on time, saying that only my phenomenological world exist and not that of others. My girlfriend even cried once when I was holding this view and all I could say was something like: " I'll have less greed and I'll be better because of holding this view ". But this view is wrong view and like any wrong views it has it's downside namely, lack of compassion.

For an outsider, it looks quite ridiculous to say only your phenomenological world exist. Without a lot very complicated framework built on long phenomenology books, a person can not believe such a view. Just like islam or christianity make no sense without the bible or the coran. There is a disciple who had this view too and Buddha got him out of it. I will search that story and post it.

Remember the road to stream entry is not about acquiring a particular view but about letting go of views. It's like cutting your way through a jungle of views. And what is keeping a person from that is attachment to views, but this is always hard to spot. There is no need for long, complicated phenomenology books to acquire a right view. If there was a need for such a thing, that would be in the suttas already. For thousands of years nobody needed such things. Buddha said his teachings are complete, with nothing needed to add on them. Things added on them like the commentaries or long phenomenology books only lead further away from the truth. They construct a new view to witch to get attached to. There is no need for such new views, especially a view that does not submit to logic and common sense but claims to be above that, independent of logic and common sense, making sense only in its own framework.

In the end... It all goes down to this: Does Janalanda phenomenological world exist, or does only your phenomenological world exist ? If you die, will my phenomenological world continue to exist ? If you die in front of me, will that manifest as a condition in my phenomenological world despite the fact that you can't see that, that it will not manifest in your phenomenological world ? It's simple, it's common sense.

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by Nicolas » Mon Sep 12, 2016 3:00 pm

Sylvester wrote:[...]
Many thanks for the detailed answer! :anjali:
Spiny Norman wrote:Sure, dependent arising and conditionality. But that requires the presence of sense-objects, and sense-objects imply something "out there". [...] And in the Loka Sutta contact arises in dependence on sense-base, sense-object and sense-consciousness. But there would be no contact without sense-objects, and sense-objects imply something "out there".
Agreed, but things "out there" are only relevant to minds; "in there" and "out there" go together. I align with acinteyyo's response.

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by SDC » Mon Sep 12, 2016 3:16 pm

Janalanda wrote: It's simple, it's common sense.
Ok. :thumbsup:

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by Nicolas » Mon Sep 12, 2016 3:55 pm

Sylvester wrote:
My view is that the Middle Way is to go beyond these ideas of "existence" or "non-existence", which are meaningless terms in a sense, and to look at things from a phenomenological perspective, paṭiccasamuppāda.
It looks like you're thinking of SN 12.15. Perhaps this bit?
This world, Kaccana, for the most part depends upon a duality—upon the notion of existence and the notion of nonexistence.
I would draw attention to how this sentence is actually framed in the Pali -
Dvayanissito khvāyaṃ, kaccāna, loko yebhuyyena—atthitañceva natthitañca.
I think BB may have been reluctant in acknowledging it, but what is discussed are not the simple abstract nouns atthitā (existence) or natthitā (non-existence). The text clearly says "atthitaṃ" and "natthitaṃ" (the nasal being transformed to ñ when it is in sandhi with a consonant).

When these 2 words have been declined like this, they are no longer simple nouns. The nasal transforms the simple nouns into proper nouns. "Atthitaṃ" and "natthitaṃ" are known as nominatives of label, and should be translated as "Existence" and "Non-Existence".

So, SN 12.15 would not be dismissing "existence" and "non-existence" as being unfit perspectives; had it done so, the Buddha would be contradicting Himself by implying that idappaccayatā is an unfit perspective. What SN 12.15 is criticising is the Upanisadic notions of Existence and Non-Existence tied to the cosmogony of selfhood. SN 12.48 records a fuller account of this Upanisadic debate, and helps us locate the debate to the one recorded in the Chandogya Upanisad 6.2.


:anjali:

PS - let it not be said that I'm going the full gamut into 'substance' and 'essence'. I'm only pointing out the simple existential predication that runs throughout Dependent Arising.
Sylvester,
This is very interesting, thank you. If you are so inclined and have the time, could you develop the following part (in a new topic or not)? I am not familiar with the Chandogya Upanisad, and so am lacking perspective/information when reading SN 12.15 and SN 12.48.
Sylvester wrote:What SN 12.15 is criticising is the Upanisadic notions of Existence and Non-Existence tied to the cosmogony of selfhood. SN 12.48 records a fuller account of this Upanisadic debate, and helps us locate the debate to the one recorded in the Chandogya Upanisad 6.2.
Thanks :anjali:

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by Dinsdale » Mon Sep 12, 2016 4:30 pm

acinteyyo wrote:
Spiny Norman wrote: Sure, dependent arising and conditionality. But that requires the presence of sense-objects, and sense-objects imply something "out there".

And in the Loka Sutta contact arises in dependence on sense-base, sense-object and sense-consciousness. But there would be no contact without sense-objects, and sense-objects imply something "out there".
This neatly supports what I tried to point out in my earlier post.

Instead of considering and giving emphasise on the implication of "out there" (of which I agree that there seems in fact to be such an implication) have you considered that along with it there comes the implication of "in here"? Has anyone given attention to the mutual dependence of these views (in here/out there) and how they play a role in the fabrication of the world and more important maybe how they represent a subject/object relationship which is nothing else but "I-making" par excellence?

What would happen or which view would arise in one who sees that relationship and how it plays out with respect to the notions of existence and non-existence?

Would there still occure the view the world exists or the view the world does not exist?

I don't think it would.

best wishes, acinteyyo
Interesting point. I wonder if the Bahiya Sutta passage is relevant here, it seems to describe liberation from the assumption of "me" as a subject, the assumption of an "in here" as opposed to an "out there".

But there is then the question of how we interpret "in the seen, just the the seen".
http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f= ... hiya+sutta

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by acinteyyo » Mon Sep 12, 2016 5:43 pm

Spiny Norman wrote: Interesting point. I wonder if the Bahiya Sutta passage is relevant here, it seems to describe liberation from the assumption of "me" as a subject, the assumption of an "in here" as opposed to an "out there".

But there is then the question of how we interpret "in the seen, just the the seen".
http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f= ... hiya+sutta
The Bahiya Sutta goes even further when it states
When there is no you in connection with that, there is no you there. When there is no you there, you are neither here nor yonder nor between the two.
No "in here", no "out there", no “inbetween“.
However I cannot follow your line of thought why you think there is then a question on how to interpret the "in the seen, just the seen" passage.

What is the problem you see?
Thag 1.20. Ajita - I do not fear death; nor do I long for life. I’ll lay down this body, aware and mindful.

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by SDC » Tue Sep 13, 2016 1:07 am

Sylvester wrote:Hi SDC

As for the "range" (āpātha), pls check out its formulaic usage in eg-
Bhikkhus, in regard to forms cognizable by the eye, if in any bhikkhu or bhikkhunī lust still exists and has not been abandoned, if hatred still exists and has not been abandoned, if delusion still exists and has not been abandoned, then even trifling forms that enter into range (āpātha) of the eye obsess the mind, not to speak of those that are prominent. For what reason? Because lust still exists and has not been abandoned, hatred still exists and has not been abandoned, delusion still exists and has not been abandoned. The same in regard to sounds cognizable by the ear ... mental phenomena cognizable by the mind.

SN 35.231


As for Dhp 1, I go for the prosaic interpretation that ties it back to SN 22.79 -
And why, bhikkhus, do you call them volitional formations? ‘They construct the conditioned,’ bhikkhus, therefore they are called volitional formations. And what is the conditioned that they construct? They construct conditioned form as form; they construct conditioned feeling as feeling; they construct conditioned perception as perception; they construct conditioned volitional formations as volitional formations; they construct conditioned consciousness as consciousness. ‘They construct the conditioned,’ bhikkhus, therefore they are called volitional formations.
Certainly, it seems difficult to map "mind" directly to "volitional formations", but I treat verse as being more liberal than formal suttas.

:anjali:
Thanks for this.

Sorry for being vague, but by "located" I meant literally "where is it?" Could we say that attention in the direction of mind is the "range"? And despite that liberal treatment of Dhp 1 :tongue: could "things in mind" precede experience without the assertion that they "exist" independent of experience?

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by Sylvester » Tue Sep 13, 2016 4:57 am

Nicolas wrote: Sylvester,
This is very interesting, thank you. If you are so inclined and have the time, could you develop the following part (in a new topic or not)? I am not familiar with the Chandogya Upanisad, and so am lacking perspective/information when reading SN 12.15 and SN 12.48.
Sylvester wrote:What SN 12.15 is criticising is the Upanisadic notions of Existence and Non-Existence tied to the cosmogony of selfhood. SN 12.48 records a fuller account of this Upanisadic debate, and helps us locate the debate to the one recorded in the Chandogya Upanisad 6.2.
Thanks :anjali:
Hi Nicolas

I hope the following are helpful -

http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.ph ... 20#p391900

https://discourse.suttacentral.net/t/on ... ta/2814/12
(between posts #12 to #22)

http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.ph ... ya#p317904

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by Sylvester » Tue Sep 13, 2016 5:05 am

SDC wrote: Sorry for being vague, but by "located" I meant literally "where is it?" Could we say that attention in the direction of mind is the "range"? And despite that liberal treatment of Dhp 1 :tongue: could "things in mind" precede experience without the assertion that they "exist" independent of experience?

I'm not sure I can afford to invest time on the study of Indian theories of cognition that the Buddha may have had to work with, if I am to answer your query. But I would say that attention is unlikely to be the "range" being referred to, as that would mean that attention is mentioned twice in the MN 28 explanation for how contact arises. This would entail reading the passage as -
If, friends, internally the eye is intact but no external forms come into its range (attention), and there is no corresponding conscious engagement (attention), then ...
:anjali:

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Re: Phenomenology question - view about the world

Post by Dinsdale » Tue Sep 13, 2016 7:50 am

acinteyyo wrote:
Spiny Norman wrote: Interesting point. I wonder if the Bahiya Sutta passage is relevant here, it seems to describe liberation from the assumption of "me" as a subject, the assumption of an "in here" as opposed to an "out there".

But there is then the question of how we interpret "in the seen, just the the seen".
http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f= ... hiya+sutta
The Bahiya Sutta goes even further when it states
When there is no you in connection with that, there is no you there. When there is no you there, you are neither here nor yonder nor between the two.
No "in here", no "out there", no “inbetween“.
However I cannot follow your line of thought why you think there is then a question on how to interpret the "in the seen, just the seen" passage.

What is the problem you see?
"In the seen, just the seen" suggests that there is something to be seen.

It's as if the subject has gone ( "no you there" ) but the object remains ( "the seen" ).

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